Fans of the wildly successful show Stranger Things will have no doubt been thrilled when Netflix confirmed it would return for a fourth season. Although filming for season four actually began in early 2020, the pandemic forced the production to shut down. Gaten Matarazzo, who plays Dustin Henderson explained in an interview that filming is “definitely a slower process than usual, which is really saying something because we take our sweet time making the show anyway.” Production resumed in stages from September of last year, with the delays resulting in a provisional release date at the end of 2021.
Following the finale of season three, titled ‘The Battle of Starcourt’, the fourth season of Stranger Things is among the most anticipated horror releases of this year. For fans who can’t wait until the end of the year, let’s take a look at what we know so far about the upcoming season.
The opening episode of season four is going to be titled ‘Chapter One: The Hellfire Club’, the name taken from the Dungeons and Dragons club from the show. If it follows the same format as earlier seasons, a year should have passed since the season three finale, meaning that we should be resuming the action in 1986. The vast majority of fan favourite characters are set to return, with Noah Schnapp (Will), Millie Bobby Brown (Eleven) Caleb McLaughlin (Lucas), Gaten Matarazzo (Dustin), Finn Wolfhard (Mike) and Sadie Sink (Max) all confirmed to be back. The creators have also revealed that Brett Gelman (Murray) and Priah Ferguson (Erica) have been promoted to the main cast line up; so expect to see much more of them in season four. Merchandise and gifts based on the central cast of Stranger Things confirms the continued focus on these characters for the upcoming season.
David Harbour will be returning as Chief Hopper, as shown in a short teaser trailer following months of speculation from fans over whether we would see his character again. Show creators the Duffer brothers confirmed in a statement that “It’s not all good news for our “American”; he is imprisoned far from home in the snowy wasteland of Kamchatka, where he will face dangers both human…and other.”
Even more exciting for horror fans is the recent announcement that the iconic Robert Englund will make a guest appearance in the show. The legendary horror actor who played Freddy Kruger in the original film series is a fan favourite who always brings a maniacal, fun and frightening performance to his projects. The production’s social media accounts gave us some clues about Englund’s role in November last year, stating he would play a “disturbed and intimidating man who is imprisoned in a psychiatric hospital for a gruesome murder in the 1950s.”
Robert Englund aka Victor Creel is a disturbed and intimidating man who is imprisoned in a psychiatric hospital for a gruesome murder in the 1950s. pic.twitter.com/QsuaGTVqDf
— Stranger Things (@Stranger_Things) November 20, 2020
As for the plot, there have been a few details released for fans to theorise. The official synopsis from Netflix explains “A new horror is beginning to surface, something long buried, something that connects everything…”. This idea of how different elements of previous seasons is sure to spark fans imaginations and has been a topic of theories and debates since the revelation.
Following the mall scene, we saw that Eleven had lost her telepathic powers at the close of season three. Teaser trailers have shown Dr. Brenner in the lab which hints that we may see more of Eleven’s history and backstory – perhaps giving us more details on her powers and how she might attempt to get them back. The Upside Down also features heavily in the teaser trailers, suggesting it is going to be a key setting for this season. In March a set photo was leaked of a trailer park being engulfed in tendrils from the Upside Down in Griffin, Georgia. Also with regard to setting, the Duffers have stated that as the story continues, it is “going to open up a little bit… not necessarily in terms of scale, in terms of special effects, but open up in terms of allowing plotlines into areas outside of Hawkins”.
We’ll be following the progress of Stranger Things season four with excitement as it appears the show’s creators have big plans for the characters and plot. Finn Wolfhard has promised that the new season is “the darkest season there’s ever been. Every year, it gets amped up. Every year it gets funnier and darker and sadder, and everything.”
Do you have any theories on Stranger Things season four? Do you think we could potentially say goodbye to major characters – or see the return of others? Let us know your thoughts!