Netflix is teaming up with Dark Horse to publish a line of comics based on Stranger Things, with the first series set to launch this September. These comics will reveal the untold stories of the hit Netflix series; first up is a miniseries that will reveal just what happened to Will Byers in the Upside-Down.
Stranger Things is one of the most popular shows on Netflix, and is a fascinating blend of supernatural horror with pop nostalgia. Netflix has recognized the unlimited potential of this powerhouse brand, recently ordering a Stranger Things videogame from Telltale. But it seems the streaming service is also taking a hot tip from the Star Wars franchise, signing up to a new series of comics that will expand on the Stranger Things story.
Netflix has come to an agreement with Dark Horse, which will see the comic book publisher launch a series of comics. According to Dark Horse, this is the beginning of "a multi-year publishing line" that will allow fans "an opportunity to explore the mysterious world of Hawkins, Indiana." The first miniseries, written by Jody Houser and with art by Stefano Martino, will explore the story of Noah Schnapp's Will Byers, who disappeared into the Upside-Down at the beginning of season 1.
Just how did he escape the Demogorgon? And how did he learn to communicate with his mother using the phone and lights? A preview image suggests he'll actually have an early encounter with Eleven.
Only a few days ago, it was revealed that Netflix had also partnered with Penguin to launch a series of Stranger Things novels. The first of those, to be published next spring, will essentially be a prequel story focused around Eleven's mother Terry and the MKUltra program.
Netflix is clearly aiming to take a similar approach to the one enjoyed by Lucasfilm. The Star Wars franchise is best known for its blockbuster movies, but the galaxy is really fleshed out in a range of popular comics and New York Times bestselling novels. If this attempt is successful, Netflix could potentially launch a franchise that will outlive even the Duffer brothers; the Star Wars books and comics flourished in the '90s, even though at the time George Lucas had no intention of making more Star Wars movies.
The story of Stranger Things could thus continue, even when the Duffer brothers have finished telling their tale and are ready to move on.