Warning: This article contains spoilers for Stranger Things season 3.
Although Netflix has yet to officially renew Stranger Things for season 4, it's really inevitable - and here's everything we know about the next season to date. Stranger Things is a show unlike any other, a fantastic blend of teenage adventure, classic horror tropes, and '80s nostalgia. The first season released in 2016, and it became an instant hit. Season 3 is now available to stream on Netflix, and the show still has a bright future ahead of it.
When showrunners Matt and Ross Duffer signed up with Netflix, they assumed they'd only get a single season; in fact, they'd originally planned to kill Eleven in season 1, and had to do extensive rewrites so the story could continue. Since then, though, they've developed a long-term strategy that means they've already decided how Stranger Things will end. As star David Harbour noted at San Diego Comic-Con 2017, the Duffer brothers don't want their show to outstay its welcome.
Netflix hasn't officially renewed Stranger Things for a fourth season, but in this case, it's essentially a formality. The decision was probably made as far back as 2017, when it was reported Netflix wanted to shoot seasons 3 and 4 back-to-back. The streaming giant was understandably concerned about the aging of the teenage stars, but the show's writers and producers insisted they'd just mature the series as their actors grew up.
Stranger Things Season 4 Release Date Info
While Stranger Things season 4 is a certainty, it's impossible to say when it will release. The first season dropped in July 2016 and the second in October 2017; there was then an unexpected two-year wait for season 3 in July 2019. According to Netflix, that's largely because they've given the Duffer brothers as much freedom to work on the scripts as they need. "It’s a hand-crafted show," Netflix VP of original content Cindy Holland told IndieWire at the TCA press tour in 2018.
As such, we can expect Stranger Things season 4 to release anywhere between late-2020 and mid-2021.
Stranger Things Season 4 Story Details
The end of Stranger Things season 3 saw the kids go their separate ways, but a mid-credits scene revealed that the Russians are still conducting experiments with the Upside Down, so presumably the gang will get back together again. Matters will surely be complicated by the loss of Eleven's powers, which no doubt won't be as easy to reverse as Mike hopes. No doubt the Mind Flayer's plans will continue to advance; the Upside Down monster has been described as the show's Moriarty figure, the mastermind behind everything the kids are destined to endure.
In an interview back in 2017, the Duffer brothers suggested that season 4 may be the end of Stranger Things. Producer and director Shawn Levy has since hinted that there may yet be a fifth season, but either way, it's clear the Duffers are coming towards the end of their story.
Stranger Things Season 4 Cast
The cast will change a little in Stranger Things season 4, due to the death of David Harbour's Jim Hopper. That will result in a very different dynamic for the adult cast, including Winona Ryder's Joyce Byers, Natalie Dyer's Nancy Wheeler, and Charlie Heaton's Jonathan Byers. Stranger Things season 4 will see the return of Millie Bobby Brown's Eleven, Finn Wolfhard's Mike Wheeler, Gaten Matarazzo's Dustin Henderson, Caleb McLaughlin's Lucas Sinclair, and Noah Schnapp's Will Byer.