Stranger Things season 3 will be set in 1985 and will explore more of Steve Harrington's protective instincts first shown in season 2. Arguably Netflix's most popular original production, Stranger Things has taken the world by storm in its two seasons thus far with a distinctly eighties flavor in terms of visuals, themes and soundtrack. This nostalgia element has a become a critical element of the show, allowing for a myriad of pop culture references, Easter eggs and Spielberg-esque storytelling.
Another well-received feature of Stranger Things has been the evolution of character Steve Harrington. Initially, Steve resembled something close to the archetypal popular high school jock but his relationship with Nancy helped uncover a deeper, more emotional side to the character. This development continued into season 2 when, as Steve and Nancy's relationship started to crumble, the character began to develop closer ties to the central group of kids, in particular Dustin. This babysitting version of Steve proved very popular and ultimately led to the magnificently-haired teen receiving a brutal beating from Dacre Montgomery's metalhead thug, Billy.
Executive producer Shawn Levy has now confirmed that Stranger Things season 3 will continue both its eighties setting, 1985 to be specific, and the paternal development of Steve Harrington. Speaking at a PaleyFest panel of cast and crew (via THR), Levy confirmed the 1985 setting and stated:
"We'll definitely get to see some more of Steve Harrington in season three, and I'll just say we won't be abandoning the Dad Steve magic. I don't want to say much more, but I literally feel that we were walking along and we stumbled onto a gold mine with Dad Steve."
This confirmation will likely come as a double dose of good news for many Stranger Things fans. The show's eighties setting has helped Stranger Things stand out among the competition and moving into 1985 will allow for the inclusion of even more iconic pop culture references such as Back To The Future, glam metal and, most intriguingly, The Goonies. It'll be interesting to see whether any of the gang think that Mikey looks familiar. The further inclusion of 'Dad Steve' is also positive news because, as Levy himself claims, the show accidentally struck gold with their decision to introduce that side of the character.
However, some viewers will be hoping that Steve isn't just relegated to babysitting duty in Stranger Things season 3, as there are plenty of other worthy avenues his character could explore. Some have theorized that, in order to keep Steve's character around beyond his high school education, Hopper might take on the youngster as a trainee police officer, possibly even becoming his deputy. Additionally, Steve had a terrible time towards the end of Stranger Things season 2, getting cheated on, dumped and beaten up within a short space of time. Many fans might feel Steve deserves a new love interest next season to give him a happier ending this time around.
Stranger Things season 3 is due for release in 2019 on Netflix.