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Eleven, born Jane Ives, also known as El, is one of the main characters of the series Stranger Things. A young girl with many psychokinetic gifts, Eleven has a mysterious past and is believed by Mike to be their best clue into finding Will.

Background

Birth and Afterbirth

Eleven's birth name is Jane Ives. She is the daughter of Terry Ives, a test subject in the MK Ultra program, and immediately after her birth, she was taken and raised by Dr. Martin Brenner, to whom she refers to as "Papa". However, according to her aunt, 'Jane isn't real'. There are no birth certificates or medical records of her existence, allowing her to be the 'perfect human test subject'.

Psychic Training

After reaching a pre-teen age, Eleven is trained by the government in the form of the Hawkins National Laboratory, where they name her Eleven by a tattoo in her arm to show her place as a subject. In her tests, they wished to bring out her greatest psychic skills. Initially, she was tested in simple tasks who required the simple use of her abilities, but eventually was tested and trained into trying to kill a cat with her mind, and after finally managing to kill two guards using her powers as a weapon, she was directed into trying to enter the Upside Down in a reconnaissance mission, but ends up finding the Monster. After she returns there a second time, she accidentally allows the Monster to escape into our world from the Upside Down. In this process, a permanent hole is torn between our world and the Upside Down. In the ensuing chaos, she escapes Hawkins Laboratory and flees into the nearby town of Hawkins.

Synopsis

Season One

After fleeing the Laboratory, Eleven finds herself inside Ben's cafe. There, she steals food. Initially angry at her, Ben has a change of heart and lets her stay, giving her food. He calls for the social assistance in order to come and take her. Eventually, they are found by the "bad men" of the Laboratory, who try to take Eleven back and kill Ben. Eleven uses her powers to escape and they change the scene in order to make it look like a suicide. Lost in the forest, and scared, she is found by Mike, Lucas and Dustin. ("The Vanishing of Will Byers")

The trio is divided in what to do with her. Lucas and Dustin want to call the police and are a bit afraid of her, but Mike decides against this and hides her in his basement. She indicates her name is Eleven because of her 011 tattoo. Eventually, she shows recognition of Will's picture in a wall. Mike calls for the other two in order to show them this, but when they threaten to tell his parents about her, she uses telekinesis to close the door and stop them, telling them that anyone who discovers about her isn't safe. ("The Weirdo on Maple Street")

Alone at Mike's house, she remembers her experience at the Laboratory after seeing a Coke in the television. She decides to help the other three into finding Will, and lead them into the Byers' house, claiming Will is there. Lucas and Dustin claim that she is lying. Soon, they find the police rescuing Will's body from the water. Seeing the scene, Mike turns against her, completely upset, claiming that she lied to him, and upset with her, picks up his bike and flees. ("Holly, Jolly")

The Body S01-E04 SS 001

Eleven connects with Will

In the basement, Eleven proves that she was not lying by using the walkie-talkie in order to project Will's voice singing "Should I Stay or Should I Go?". She tells them that Will is in his house but not our world's version, telling them about the Upside Down, which the boys understand through the RPG concept of the Vale of Shadows. The boys decide to use Mr. Clarke's ham radio in order to talk with Will properly, as the connection through the walkie-talkie is very thin. They went to the school for the assembly over Will's death, as this were the conditions given by Mr. Clarke to use it. When Troy and his friend laugh and joke over Will's death, Mike attacks Troy just to be saved by Eleven, who freezes him and makes him pee himself. They turn the radio on, and Eleven opens full connection to Will. However, they are incapable of speaking to him and can only overhear his conversation with his mother and the attack from the Monster who comes afterwards it. As the radio was also exhausted, it bursts in flames as she passes out. ("The Body")

The Flea and the Acrobat S01-E05 SS 001

Eavesdropping

During Will's funeral, Mr. Clarke answers the boys questions about parallel dimensions and tells them that it is only possible with a massive amount of energy, and such energy would cause interference in electromagnetic fields nearby. In Mike's basement, Dustin discovers the compasses are not pointing to the true north and concludes it is a side-effect of the Portal opening. They try to find it, but Eleven, afraid of returning to the place from where she ran away, changes the compasses' directions in order to deliberately make them lost. She remembers her eavesdropping on a Russian agent inside the Laboratory before finding the Monster. With them lost, Lucas turns on her with Mike defending her. A fight ensues and Eleven knocks Lucas unconscious with telekinesis before fleeing. ("The Flea and the Acrobat")

The Flea and the Acrobat S01-E05 SS 003

Lucas is knocked down

Now lost in the streets of the town, Eleven enters a supermarket store and pick up several boxes of waffles. An employee tries to stop her from fleeing, and therefore, stealing the boxes, but Eleven is faster and uses telekinesis to guard her, before breaking the doors of the store with her powers. ("The Monster")

During the ambush of Mike and Dustin by Troy, Mike finally decides to jump down into the water to spare Dustin, but Eleven intervenes. She saves Mike, bringing him safely back to land, breaking Troy's arm in the process. The bullies flee while she reconciles with both Mike and Dustin. ("The Monster")

They return to Mike's house but Hawkins comes for her as the "bad men" enter the house. The trio narrowly escapes alongside Lucas, with Eleven saving them using telekinesis. Joyce, Hopper, Jonathan and Nancy, now knowing of Eleven's existence, communicate with the group through the walkie-talkie and comes to their rescue in the junkyard. The united group breaks in the middle school and produce a salt-water bathtub to serve as a sensory-deprivation tank where Eleven can astral project herself into the Upside Down. It works and she finds Barbara's corpse as well as Will, still alive, and tells him to stay strong because his mother is going to rescue him. ("The Bathtub")

The Upside Down S01-E08 SS 001

Eleven's sacrifice

In order to get a passage through the main portal in the Laboratory, Hopper tells the "bad men" about Eleven's location. In the middle school, Eleven and Mike make a final approach and they kiss, with Mike inviting her to be his pair at the ball. She accepts as the bad men break into the school, attacking them. They are captured but Eleven successfully kills most of them using biokinesis to bleed them to death, but they are taken hostage regardless. Dr. Brenner states they will take her back to take care of her, but she refuses and calls for Mike. At this moment, the blood in the scene attracts the Monster who breaks into the school and starts a massacre, killing Dr. Brenner in the process. The boys hide in the Science Lab, but the Monster breaks into the place. He is almost to kill them before Eleven intervenes, her eyes now red due to the overuse of her powers. She pins it against a wall and immobilizes Mike so he will not intervene. Eleven tells them goodbye before sacrificing herself in order to destroy the Monster, tearing him apart, but she herself disappears afterwards, leaving Mike in tears. ("The Upside Down")

A month later, during the Christmas, Hopper flees the office with Christmas' party leftovers, including waffles, and leave them in the woods in a concealed box, an obvious gift for Eleven, who everyone presumes to be dead. ("The Upside Down")

Personality

Due to being raised in lab, El is quiet and reserved. She has severe claustrophobia stemming from the room she would be regularly locked up if she didn't comply to Dr. Brenner's demands. Despite her difficulty speaking, El is a quick learner, explaining the concept of the Upside Down using a game board and using her abilities to manipulate compasses. She has a fondness for Eggo Waffles.

Powers and Abilities

Eleven has a vast array of natural psychical powers she was born with, but most of them were sleeping from the beginning. Her training in the Hawkins National Laboratory allowed her to develop her powers better, and along the series she has shown them progressively. However, her powers exhaust her physically and she starts to bleed from her nose and, in extreme cases, from her ears, if she uses them too much. Her powers include:

  • Telekinesis – Her most recurrent power, Eleven has shown control of telekinesis into an impressive degree. Initially able to destroy a Coke using her telekinesis, she eventually developed her ability from moving objects like doors or toys, and acquired the power to destroy things with it with little concentration. She was also able to hold Mike in the air with her powers, pin the Monster against a wall, flip a van in the air and focus her telekinesis in multiple targets at once.
  • Psychometry – Eleven is able to acquire information through indirect methods. She has shown to be able to recognize people taken to the Upside Down, as she recognized both Will and Barbara in photos although she never met them before.
  • Telepathy – Eleven can also telepathically communicate with other people in their minds, as well as them can speak to her in this line of mental talk.
  • Sound Mimicry – She is able to project people's current speak into sound-emitting electronic objects. She was able to project Will's voice singing in the walkie-talkie, and was able to do it in a larger scale using Mr. Clarke's ham radio. During her training, she performed the same with a man with sound amplifiers, and after this, with a Soviet soldier.
  • Astral Projection – Eleven is able to mentally travel to the Upside Down. Although she cannot truly enter the place in body, she can transport her mind there while floating in a sensory-depriving bathtub or in any water place where she is not bothered by outside interferece. While performing this, she can still communicate with the outside world and people there while, at the same time, acting in the Upside Down, showing she has a great skill in this ability.
  • Biokinesis – To a minor extent, Eleven is able to use telekinesis specifically to manipulate lifeforms. She made Troy piss himself, and later, she broke his arm using her mind. During her tests, she was compelled into killing a cat with her mind, and later killed a guard by snapping his neck mentally. During the battle in the Hawkins Elementary, she killed several agents by making them bleed to death, and was eventually able to kill the Monster using this ability, although she seemingly died afterwards.
  • Eletromagnetic Control – Eleven was able to briefly change the north to where the compasses were pointing to in order to drive the boys out of the way, so they would not find the portal. However, this was a minor alteration, and is debatable if it was telekinesis or eletromagnetic control.

Memorable Quotes

  • "Papa?"
  • "Friends Don't Lie."

Relationships

  • Lucas Sinclair - Friend
  • Mike Wheeler - Friend
  • Dustin Henderson - Friend

Gallery

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