All the tweens have paired up in Season 3 of Stranger Things. Mike and Eleven are in full on puppy love, whereas Lucas and Max have settled into being that couple that bickers all the time. Dustin says he's found someone too, but his girlfriend Suzie just happens to live out of state, okay? She's definitely real. No, he doesn't have a picture of her. But she's real, and if you believe him you want to know who plays Suzie on Stranger Things.
Warning: Spoilers ahead for Stranger Things Season 3.
Guess what guys, she exists. Gabriella Pizzolo plays the oft-mentioned but little seen Suzie. When Dustin arrives back in Hawkins after being away at camp for the summer, he boasts that she's super smart and prettier than Phoebe Cates (in case you forgot it was the '80s). All that bragging has his friends doubting her existence, but once he finally gets through to Suzie on his epic homemade ham radio, she can no longer be denied.
Pizzolo doesn't appear much in Season 3, but she makes the most of her screen time by introducing everyone to the nickname "Dusty-buns" and inducing an impromptu singalong. And Pizzolo breaking into song is perfectly fitting, because she's already made a name for herself on Broadway. She may be relatively new to television, but she seems very at home on stage.
Stranger Things won't be Pizzolo's TV debut, though it's the biggest onscreen project she's been a part of so far. According to IMDB, she appeared in the series BrainDead for one episode, as well as the TV remake of Beaches. She took part in the short Broadway Kids Against Bullying: I Have A Voice and then lent said voice to the show Butterbean's Café. However, theater is where Pizzolo has done the majority of her work.
Per Playbill, Pizzolo made her Broadway debut in Matilda the Musical in 2013, playing the title role. After that, she went on to take over the role of Small Alison in Fun Home in 2015. Before that, she was an understudy for three characters in the show, so she had to be prepared to play a variety of characters at a moment's notice. She spoke highly of her time with the show during an interview with Broadway World, citing her favorite part as "getting to work with all of the incredible, talented people and getting to do what I love to do the most." She added, "I'm just so honored."
The role of Small Alison was a complicated and emotional one, but according to Pizzolo, getting into character was very natural. Once she was on stage, she told Broadway World that everything just fell into place, thanks to her fellow actors. They could easily make her feel like she was Alison and they were her family.
Pizzolo may not have needed to plumb those same depths as Dustin's out of state girlfriend on Stranger Things, but if Suzie ever decides to come to Hawkins, then it sounds like she'll be more than capable of digging deeper into the character. Now that we know she's real.