In the summer of 2016, Netflix released Stranger Things. Creators Matt and Ross Duffer were inspired by a number of movies from their childhood in the 1980s. The show was both set in that decade and heavily influenced by popular culture of the time period. From the synthesizer-heavy soundtrack to specific references to everything from Stephen King and Star Wars, the series brought a joyful nostalgia to viewers of a certain age, despite the dark and frightening plot.
The series told the story of a small town that was shaken by the disappearance of 12-year-old Will Bowers. Will's friends try to find him, befriending a mysterious and powerful little girl called Eleven. While there was a happy ending for Will in that he returned home, the last few seconds of season 1 made it clear he might not be safe from The Upside Down, the dark mirror world where he was held captive.
According to HollywoodLife, David Harbour (Jim Hopper) dropped a few hints about season 2 during a cast panel at the Fan2Sea Comic-Con cruise.
“It’s a year later in the story, so there are several things that happened last year, like Will has come back. There are certain people in the town that know what happened, and then certain people that don’t know what happened. So there’s a lot of fall out with who knows what.”
With the exception of Chief of Police Jim Hopper, as well as Martin Brenner and the scientists of Hawkins Laboratory, nearly the entire story of the first season revolved around the Byers and Wheeler families and friends. So most of the rest of the town is in the dark about what happened. Especially the adults, which was a part of the 1980s feel. Many 80s horror and fantasy movies were about kids on their own, with little to no help from adults.
Harbour also spoke to the addition of actor Sean Astin, as a former classmate of Hopper and Joyce Byers. “We have Sean Astin… he’s Winona’s new boyfriend... much to the chagrin to the Chief of Police.” So it would seem that a love triangle is in the works.
Astin was a breakout child star in 1985 for his role as Mikey in Goonies. He's certainly not the first 80s star to join the cast of Stranger Things, Winona Ryder starred in several movies during the second half of the decade including Beetlejuice, Heathers, and Great Balls of Fire. Nor is Astin the only 80s star joining the show in season 2, Beverly Hills Cop and Aliens star Paul Reiser has been added to the cast as well.
Harbour confirmed once again that there will be justice for Barb, which has been a constant refrain since the show aired. While Barb is certainly dead, she is not forgotten. “The question and the feelings that Nancy has that no one ever cares about her friend Barb, are very much present in the beginning of the season.”
Season 2 of Stranger Things will be released on Netflix later in 2017. Keep an eye on Screen Rant for more information.