Caleb McLaughlin has revealed that he has faced racism after portraying Lucas Sinclair in Stranger Things. The actor appeared at the Heroes Comic Con Belgium convention over the weekend and revealed his experiences as a Black actor on the much-loved Netflix show.
“It definitely took a toll on me as a younger kid,” the actor said in a video captured by an attendee. “My very first Comic-Con, some people didn’t stand in my line because I was Black. Some people told me, ‘Oh I didn’t want to be in your line because you were mean to Eleven.'”
He added, “Even now, some people don’t follow me or don’t support me because I’m Black. Sometimes overseas, you feel the racism, you feel the bigotry. Sometimes it’s hard to talk about and for people to understand, but when I was younger, it definitely affected me a lot.”
“When I was younger, it definitely affected me a lot because — this is a deep conversation right now — you’re like: ‘Why am I the least favorite? The least amount of followers? I’m on the same show as everybody from Season 1,’” Caleb said.
Caleb has the least amount of followers among the main Stranger Things kids. While 15.4 million people are following Caleb, Gaten has 18.7 million followers, Finn 26.3 million, Noah 27.6 million, and Millie 58.5 million.
“My parents had to be like: ‘It’s a sad truth, but it’s because you’re the Black child on the show,’” Caleb remembered. “Wow, that’s crazy. Because I was born with this beautiful chocolate skin I’m not loved?”
“Because I was born with this beautiful chocolate skin, I’m not loved,” he said. “But that’s why with my platform, I want to spread positivity and love because I do not give hate back to people who give hate to me.”