It was worse. Just a giant pile of sad, right before your eyes.
Aaron Sims Creative did a lot of concept art for Stranger Things, and one thing the artists there came up with was a version of Barb's death that was even more depressing than the one we actually got.
Aaron Sims told Screen Crush what the plan used to be. "Based on our original discussion with the Duffers on this design, we wanted to go really graphic with it to highlight the horrific aspects of Barb being eaten, and something then growing on top of her — thus, the ribs poking out of her stomach in the first shot."
And, oh, did it get even worse for poor Barb. Why is something crawling out of her mouth? Because, according to Sims, "In the script for that episode, there was specifically a description of a spider coming out of her mouth, which we incorporated into the design of that second shot." He went on to say there's no explanation, just what was in the script.
Original Concept Art for @StrangerThings ... Barb's demise The beauty of working with the show creators #DufferBros, allowing us to go 'dark & disgusting' with scenes from the #upsidedown #weareallbarb #strangerthings #digitalart #zbrush #conceptart #netflix #barb2.0 #demogorgon #disgusting #decay #digitalpaint @aaronsimscreative
Apparently the reason these concepts went unused was because Barb's body was too unrecognisable in this state and "it wasn't an issue of it being too graphic, but rather, that the viewer needed to see something that was very recognisably dead".
We disagree. This is very clearly a dead Barb. And it bums us out. Here's hoping season two really does bring some justice.