Netflix posts horrifying ‘Stranger Things’ cooking videos to YouTube

12:00 a.m. Sunday, Oct. 23, 2016 Austin360

Au jus-tice for Barb? Delicious, devilish dishes inspired by Netflix’s “Stranger Things” are only a press-play away.

The streaming entertainment service has uploaded two videos in a series dubbed “Netflix Kitchen” to YouTube. That sounds charming. Can you find recipes for Orange Is the New Blackberry Pie? Daredeviled Eggs, maybe made with Luke Cage-free eggs? No, the dishes served up so far are equally clever but hideously darker. Kinda like “Stranger Things,” come to think of it.

Receiving the lion’s share of the online chatter: French Onion Barb, a soup inspired by and fashioned in the post-mortem likeness of the horror show’s fan-favorite ancillary character, the bespectacled Barb Holland. A savory, cheesy delight that resembles the corpse of a dead teenager slain by an extra-dimensional demogorgon, the recipe calls back to the scene where psychic sweetheart Eleven (played by Millie Bobby Brown) discovers the goo-covered, slug-infested remains of the show’s resident wet blanket (played by Shannon Purser) in the dark Upside-Down realm.

So, just to be clear, this is French onion soup with a pizza dough version of Barb’s head floating at the top of the bowl. Also, covered in lightly toasted Swiss cheese. Also, you’re supposed to make a little bread replica of Barb trying to escape her death at the bottom of an empty, netherworld swimming pool and affix it to the side of the bowl. Yum!

Significantly less evocative of cannibalism and flesh decay but equally suitable for your Halloween weekend party: the “Demogorgon Pie,” an ornate pastry inspired by the aforementioned monster terrorizing the world of “Stranger Things.” A flaky fall treat, that pumpkin-cherry-blackberry pie is flanked on all sides by almond-encrusted crust flaps, meant to mimic the demogorgon’s gaping, “Little Shop of Horrors”-esque maw.

The recipes are both on Netflix’s YouTube channel, and I’m eagerly awaiting potential future installments. Can anyone say “Winona Ryder’s A-Z Christmas Cookies”? Seems like a good use of gumdrops.

This election cycle is a trying time for many Americans. Caught between “Make America Great Again” and “I’m With Her,” some of us just don’t know where to turn. Many Americans have pledged to flee to the Great White North if their least-favored presidential candidate wins, a sentiment heard almost every four years.

But let’s not kid ourselves. Canada’s pretty cool. We’ve got that country to thank for Drake, ice hockey, instant replay, the athletic cup, basketball (James Naismith was Canadian-American) and the paint roller, among other things. Our polite Canadian friends like us, too. In fact, they think America’s pretty great already.

Living up to their “nice to a fault” stereotype, a group of Canadians has started a social media campaign to encourage Americans this election season. In a video titled “Tell America It’s Great,” Toronto-based creative agency the Garden Collective rounds up a bunch of Canadians, who earnestly and unironically tell Americans what they love about the U.S.A.

“Hey, guys! We’re just up here in Canada talking about how great you guys are down there, and we thought we’d just send you a little bit of a love note,” one man in the video says to start things off.

Among the things these particular Canadians like about us, according to the video:

The video was posted to the “Tell America It’s Great” website on Oct. 13. The hashtag #TellAmericaThatItsGreat was started as a twist on Donald Trump’s “Make America Great Again,” Garden Collective founder Shari Walczak told the New York Times. “We look at (the election) through a Canadian lens, but all of us have friends, family and colleagues who live in America,” he said. “We realized they’re immersed in it day-in and day-out and how awful that must feel.”

— Jake Harris, American-Statesman staff

Austin has now joined the ranks of Los Angeles, New York, London, Paris, Amsterdam, Aspen, Barcelona, Charleston, Cabo and Chicago as cities graced by Gwyneth Paltrow’s stamp of approval.

Paltrow’s lifestyle blog, Goop, added Austin to its collection of city guides, complete with suggestions of things to do, bars to visit and restaurants to sample, which presumably means everything Gwyneth Paltrow would do and buy here. (Remember when she included $956 toilet paper in her holiday gift guide?)

Goop praised Austin for its music and food, along with its “well programmed airport with live performances and surprisingly good barbecue spots.” While we agree with Gwyneth and her staff, equating our “unique personality” with our airport is a somewhat superficial way to appreciate this great city. Also, as you click through the guide, it might seem increasingly detached from everyday life here to some.

The guide lauds the outdoor activities and fitness opportunities that are uniquely Austin, which we don’t dispute. But it also explains that the Colorado River breezes away stereotypes of a hot and humid climate (which is just flat-out wrong). There are also zero music shops listed in this guide; not even Waterloo Records gets an honorable mention.

— Jackie Wang, American-Statesman staff

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