Stranger Things has proven to be a phenomenal success for Netflix. The homage to ’80s horror and sci-fi proved to be something audiences responded to and clearly continue to want more of. With all the success the show has had and attention it has garnered for the young cast, anticipation for season 2 is at an all time high.
Though there are few details available, it is known that the show will expand its cast with familiar faces, like Sean Astin, Paul Reiser, and comedian Brett Gelman. The newcomers will, of course, join returning cast members Millie Bobby Brown, Finn Wolfhard, Winona Ryder, David Harbour, Gaten Matarazzo, and Caleb McLaughlin (sorry, Barb). What the characters will be up to and what they’ve learned from their encounter with the Demogorgon and the Upside Down remains unclear at the moment, and will likely stay that way until season 2 premieres.
Still, that didn’t stop Vanity Fair from asking the cast and its executive producer about what audiences can expect Stranger Things returns. While at the BAFTA’s annual tea party, they spoke with producer and director Shawn Levy about the show moving forward. Levy said:
“Season 2 is bigger and potentially darker in its stakes. The threat, which in Season 1 was to Will Byers, has grown. That’s all I’m going to say! But, I will say Season 2 has a bigger cast and is definitely loyal to the kind of magical storytelling that we established in the first season. It’s character-based and still about our core group of characters.”
That is admittedly not a lot to go on, but Levy’s comments do track with what most creators try to do with a popular property their second time at bat. While it’s not uncommon to hear second seasons or sequels attempting to expand upon the story and its world, often times adding new characters and challenges, the idea that the show plans to go darker will likely be even more familiar to audiences. Still, if the Duffer Brothers maintain their willingness to embrace pop cultural homages, then it tracks to think they might be modeling Stranger Things season 2 (in tone, anyway) after an ’80s sequel that famously went darker with terrific results: The Empire Strikes Back.
Wolfhard, who plays Mike Wheeler on the series, echoed Levy’s statements to a certain degree, suggesting that now that the heavy lifting of defining who the main characters are is done, the show will be able to explore their maturation as the series grows along with them.
“Now that we’ve done a season, we know exactly about our characters. We are very conscious of them and can take them to the next level. I think we’ve grown up a little bit, and our characters have too. They have been through a lot and have used those experiences to help them grow and to be stronger in Season 2.”
For now, these insinuations of a darker tone and greater breadth and depth will have to tide audiences over, as it seems unlikely Netflix or the Duffers are going to offer much in the way of concrete information for the second season. While that makes waiting more of a challenge, it will likely only help build anticipation for the return of one of 2016’s biggest hits.
Stranger Things season 2 is scheduled to premiere sometime in 2017.
Source: Vanity Fair