Nostalgia is still a thing

A commentary on the latest season of Stranger Things.

We have waited more than three years for Hawkins to be back and its nostalgia wave hits us right in the face.

In this article, I will go through some mention-worthy points of the latest season. If you want a recap of what happened or a comment on all the easter eggs, there are many of those.

So strap in and start your Synthwave playlist for a sightseeing tour of Stranger Things Season 4.

[Attention: Spoilers Ahead]

The 80s are back

STRANGER THINGS. (L to R) Natalia Dyer as Nancy Wheeler, Gaten Matarazzo as Dustin Henderson, Joe Keery as Steve Harrington, Joseph Quinn as Eddie Munson, Maya Hawke as Robin Buckley, Priah Ferguson as Erica Sinclair, Sadie Sink as Max Mayfield, and Caleb McLaughlin as Lucas Sinclair in STRANGER THINGS. Cr. Courtesy of Netflix © 2022

Season 3 has left us quite unsettled. Billy is dead, the Group is split up and some of the guys moved out of town. It seems that we need some time to get back in the 80s game. Music and iconic 80s elements and hairstyle bring us right on the way.
And as soon as we arrived the duffer brother do what they did best. Redoing the same thing we have had before, and we still like it!
Being in High School is different and it becomes harder to stay true to his own style. As Lucas Sinclair finds out as he is trying to approach another popularity Level by entering the basketball Team.

We are taken slowly into the story, and the first real incident happens at the end of episode 1.

Eddy, the newly introduced long-haired, heavy-metal guy just wants to be nice to cheerleader Chrissy. She has problems and scary daydreams. But what are the odds, that Eddy will be the only witness as she gets killed by a demon out of the upside-down. Eddy doesn´t know this yet, but of course, we do, because we are as smart as the Gang. Eddy soon finds out what is going on in…

The Boat House Scene

STRANGER THINGS. (L to R) Joseph Quinn as Eddie Munson, Joe Keery as Steve Harrington, Maya Hawke as Robin Buckley, Sadie Sink as Max Mayfield, and Gaten Matarazzo as Dustin Henderson in STRANGER THINGS. Cr. Courtesy of Netflix © 2022

This scene is a great example of how well the writers were able to repeat their own structure, without letting us notice. And they do this by simply letting us know, that we have seen it all before. Steve explains to startling Eddy, that they know what is happening, and that they have all done it before. And instead of blindly redoing seasons 1-3 they use a technique that is often used by screenwriters. During the last battle when the hero has been prepped up with all his weapons, the authors then take all of his toys away. Letting him or her no time to think to decide. This way a character’s true strength is revealed. Are they able to improvise? As in stranger things, in season 4 Eleven is not part of the battle so far. This is a huge disadvantage and a new situation. The Gang will have to deal with the Upside Downers themselves. And they do so by being…

Fearless Investigators

STRANGER THINGS. (L to R) Maya Hawke as Robin Buckley, Joe Keery as Steve Harrington, Priah Ferguson as Erica Sinclair, Natalia Dyer as Nancy Wheeler, and Sadie Sink as Max Mayfield in STRANGER THINGS. Cr. Courtesy of Netflix © 2022

Needless to say, monster hunting is a scary business.
They have all done this before, except last time they had a girl with superpowers with them.
Even then it is still surprising how little fear Steve, Dustin, Robin, and all the others show when it comes to looking for the Monsters. Maybe they have been in shock after the rotten finale of season 3, or it is due to the fact that everyone acts heroic in the eye of an overpowering evil overlord, except Eddy. Who, in contrast to being the leader of the Hellfire Club, now wants to be part of the Gang. Too bad for him, that he already has a Fan-Group following him…

The Basketball Boys

STRANGER THINGS. Mason Dye as Jason Carver in STRANGER THINGS. Cr. Courtesy of Netflix © 2022

Eddy himself is not only a Monster-Snack-To-Be.
To keep the group running and the audience up in tension, Sinclairs Basketball Group is starting to hunt down our main characters since their leader Jason Carver was Chrissy’s boyfriend. They strive to become a gang of looting maniacs seeking revenge and I am looking forward to how they will interfere with the Group in the next season.

The Great Discovery:

STRANGER THINGS. (L to R) Vecna in STRANGER THINGS. Cr. Courtesy of Netflix © 2022

As the final episode approaches we realize what some viewers might have anticipated, that 1 a.k.a. Peter Ballard is not only the nice guy he wants us to think but is the evil overlord that inhabits the Upside down and has more than one reason to haunt Eleven throughought season 1-3.
What remains a mystery is where Vecna got his powers from? Besides him having them as a child we will have to wait for the next season to answer this. In the meantime we can think about…

Hoppers Immortaility

This is my biggest critical point with this otherwise adorable season.
It is a monster series, and of course, they are going to kill people, but the amount of Human-to-Human violence has gone rogue in season 4.
Hopper, the nice chief detective, winner of hearts who has finally found his family and some kind of happiness is not only beamed away into a Russian prison but is tortured, in every single episode.

STRANGER THINGS. David Harbour as Jim Hopper in STRANGER THINGS. Cr. Courtesy of Netflix © 2022

He has been quite damaged at the end of season 3, but now he is beaten up, gets rips broken, gets suffocated, gets his foot broken, gets beaten up, survives an explosion, drives a speeder through snow without shoes and helmet, gets beaten up again by the bad guys, gets fed but doesn´t eat(?), gets beaten up by his cell-mate until in the end he is just gently scratched by the Demogorgon.
To Hopper, it seems, humans are much more of a threat than monsters.

Stranger Things Volume 2

As some might know, the fourth season of Stranger Things is released in two volumes. Volume 1 reached us on May 27, 2022, and volume 2 is viewable starting July 1, 2022. Volume 2 contains only two final episodes of season 4 in feature film length.

Why season 4 is split up like this is unsure. The Duffer Brothers told Variety in an interview, that they felt the season finale was too big, to be released altogether.

To me, it sounds like a production compromise, to get more time to finish the hundreds of effect shots that are well planned and take an enormous time to be realized.

Still, I am psyched to see the final episode and welcome the decision, to let Stranger Things end, after season 5.

Stay Safe

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