Netflix has released a batch of new photos from the upcoming “Stranger Things” season, revealing everything from new faces to beloved characters to a spooky house and ... a Brigham Young University pennant.
The ‘Stranger Things’ BYU connection
Cougar fans, especially, might have noticed one photo in particular that shows a blue and white BYU pennant on the wall behind the character Will, who sits in a bedroom alongside characters Mike (Finn Wolfhard), Jonathan (Charlie Heaton) and Argyle, a new character played by Eduardo Franco.
The BYU pennant isn’t too much of a surprise. Cougar pride made its appearance during the third season of “Stranger Things,” when fans were introduced to Dustin’s girlfriend from science camp, Suzie (Gabriella Pizzolo), who is a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and lives in Salt Lake City, the Deseret News reported. During the Season 3 finale where Dustin (Gaten Matarazzo) and Suzie sang the theme from “The Neverending Story” while simultaneously saving the world, a BYU pennant could be spotted on Suzie’s wall.
The new “Stranger Things” photo, released Wednesday, shows a different wall with a different blue and white BYU pennant. But it still appears to be the science-loving Suzie’s room, as it shows the radio Suzie used to communicate with Dustin, and a poster of the planets. The 80s-style wallpaper the BYU pennant hangs on is also briefly seen in Suzie’s room during the Season 3 finale, meaning Suzie could very well have two BYU pennants hanging in her room (who knew she was such a Cougar fan?)
But the new photo of Suzie’s room also indicates a bigger picture for the upcoming season of “Stranger Things”: The storyline is expanding well beyond Hawkins.
Will ‘Stranger Things’ Season 4 visit Salt Lake City?
When “Stranger Things” fans met Suzie for the first time in Season 3, it was through a radio call between Suzie and Dustin, who were communicating from Salt Lake City and Hawkins, Indiana, respectively.
The new Season 4 photo shows major “Stranger Things” characters in Suzie’s room, meaning they have taken a trip to Salt Lake City. A Utah-based storyline in Season 4 isn’t completely far-fetched since we see Eleven and Will packing things up and moving with Joyce Byers to California at the end of the third season. We’ve known for a while that the fourth season expands the world of “Stranger Things” — a 2019 teaser for the season came with the tagline: “We’re not in Hawkins anymore.”
The photo also indicates that Suzie will have more of a role in the fourth season, which, considering the popularity of her one scene with Dustin in the Season 3 finale, can only be a good thing.
When does ‘Stranger Things’ Season 4 hit Netflix?
The new season will be released in two parts, with the first five episodes hitting Netflix on May 27 and the remaining four streaming on the platform beginning July 1, the Deseret News reported. We now also know the hit series will end after Season 5.
- “Seven years ago, we planned out the complete story arc for ‘Stranger Things,’” creators Matt and Ross Duffer wrote in a letter to fans. “At the time, we predicted the story would last four to five seasons. It proved too large to tell in four but — as you’ll see for yourselves — we are now hurtling toward our finale.
- “It’s been a little while,” they continued. “With nine scripts, over eight-hundred pages, almost two years of filming, thousands of visual effects shots and a runtime nearly twice the length of any previous season, ‘Stranger Things 4’ was the most challenging season yet, but also the most rewarding one. Everyone involved is incredibly proud of the results, and we can’t wait to share it with you. Given the unprecedented length, and to get it to you as soon as possible, Season 4 will be released in two volumes.”
What else do we know about ‘Stranger Things’ Season 4?
The “Stranger Things” cast has been open about the new season being scarier than the rest.
Last year, “Stranger Things” star Finn Wolfhard said Season 4 is “the darkest season there’s ever been,” the Deseret News reported. Similarly, Wolfhard’s co-star, Matarazzo, also said it was the “scariest” out of all the seasons and more “mature” in tone.
The “Stranger Things” creators are now confirming that Season 4 does, in fact, take a darker turn.
- “We can’t do ‘The Goonies’ anymore,” “Stranger Things” co-creator Ross Duffer told Netflix’s Tudum publication, noting how the stars have grown up since the show’s debut in July 2016. “And so, suddenly, we’re leaning much harder into that horror movie territory that we love. It was fun to make that change.”
Season 4 will pick up six months after the epic Starcourt Mall battle between the Hawkins kids and Mind Flayer in Season 3, Variety reported.
- “Struggling with the aftermath, our group of friends are separated for the first time — and navigating the complexities of high school hasn’t made things any easier,” the official Netflix description for the season reads. “In this most vulnerable time, a new and horrifying supernatural threat surfaces, presenting a gruesome mystery that, if solved, might finally put an end to the horrors of the Upside Down.”
Season 4 will also reveal a big secret about Jim Hopper, Hawkins’ chief of police who was presumed dead at the end of Season 3 but is actually a prisoner in Russia, the Deseret News reported.
- “We get to see a lot of Hopper at his most vulnerable, we’re gonna reveal a lot of backstory points that we’ve only hinted at,” actor David Harbour, who plays Hopper, previously told Entertainment Tonight. “We’re gonna see a lot of these different threads, and also, we get to see a rebirth of him.”
Based on another Season 4 teaser, we also know it will delve more into Eleven’s past and introduce fans to a slew of new characters, the Deseret News reported.