Warning: Major Stranger Things S3 Spoilers
Netflix hasn’t yet extended the series for another season, but executive producer Shawn Levy is positive that Stranger Things season 4 will take place. I was quite excited when the creators, Duffer Brothers, started to talk about where the plot is going “I think the biggest thing that’s going to happen is it’s going to open up a bit, not necessarily in terms of scale, in terms of special effects, but open up in terms of allowing portals into areas outside of Hawkins”, said Matt Duffer.
Stranger things S3 ending was an unpleasant ride for fans of Hopper, Eleven, and plenty of the other residents in Hawkins, Indiana. At the end of Stranger Things 3, El reads a note her adoptive father Jim Hopper, which he wrote earlier this season. His work for the speech prepared to give Mike and El about feelings and boundaries. Hopper’s speech to El becomes the voiceover for Stranger Things 3’s closing montage. It’s in the message the show gives us as an ending takeaway (while also making us weep because he’s gone). Like most fans, you’ll be wrapping up your binge-watch session soon (if you haven’t already done so). But, I am sure you will be left with a question – What can you expect with season 4 of Stranger Things?
Stranger Things has always been about supernatural experiences and heroic exploits, but this season it was also about teenage angst. They put the entire dynamic of the show on Kids, and they all are rapidly maturing. Its lead characters would be unrecognizable if they were all adults. It simply wouldn’t be Stranger Things any more with an adult cast. As Hopper rightly asserts, it’s time to move on.
At its core, Stranger Things is a story about loss. One of the key motifs in this Grand Theme is how it treats its main cast of characters: some were killed off (Barb Holland, Bob Newby, and Billy Hargrove). Most of us believed that Hopper could still be alive, and well, so do I believe that all these characters we’ve seen throughout the season will play important roles in the next season to save Hopper.
Eleven lost her powers because of the bite; the mind flayer was causing its human puppets to absorb chemicals. I don’t think Eleven’s powers will come back by the start of Season 4. Eleven is with Joyce, and I imagine she’ll be struggling from being separated to Mike and grieving over Hopper.
Is Will being an actual character? I totally understand, yet I really empathized with Will. I think it’s a subtle touch, but I believe that his lack of use in the show was a conscious decision to show the effects of trauma from the past two seasons. We learn over the course of the episodes that Will is still somehow psychically linked to the Upside Down, and there’s no reason to assume that should change just because he leaves Hawkins.
That pretty much just leaves to the relationships — specifically Nancy and Jonathan and Eleven and Mike — when they’re apart? In season 3, Jonathan has gone from a rebel outcast to a sensible worker who wants to hold on to his job. He’s becoming more conventional as things get weirder around him. Even the experiences Nancy and Jonathan have had with Hawkins have forced them to mature — perhaps too early for their own good.
My hunch is that the Duffers brothers already have season 4 mapped out. They perhaps knew where it was moving before they finished season 3, so all those unanswered questions from Season 2 and the whole of Season 3 will perhaps take place to a big resolution in the next season. So those are the broad strokes of how I think ‘the bite’ and Hopper’s being alive could explain the plot of season 4.