Ever since its debut, Stranger Things has cannily combined themes of adolescent friendship and nostalgia with some moments of genuine terror. Season 3 of the show went darker than ever, introducing creatures from a nightmare realm that could destroy the entire world. According to Finn Wolfhard, who plays the role of Mike Wheeler in the series, the upcoming season is going to be the darkest one yet.
"Every season it gets darker. Really, I will say with Season 3 I was like, this is the darkest season that there'll ever be, like the exploding rats and everything. But really, Season 4 so far, it's the darkest season there's ever been. Every year, it gets amped up. Every year it gets funnier and darker and sadder, and everything. Every year, they amp it up."
This is far from the first time that Stranger Things season 4 has been singled out for its dark themes. Previously, Gaten Matarazzo, who plays Dustin, had remarked, "I think most would probably say it's the scariest [season] out of the previous three." Joe Keery, who plays Steve Harrington, has echoed that sentiment, stating "I think that this year - and I know I say this every single year - but this is definitely going to be a lot scarier than prior years, because last year was pretty dark."
The last season of Stranger Things ended on something of a downer note. The inter-dimensional demon-king that the children had dubbed the "Mindflayer" had been sealed away and prevented from entering our world, but at the cost of the life of Billy Hargrove, while Detective Jim Hopper had somehow found himself locked up in a Russian prison.
It seems the fourth season of the show is set to really step things up in terms of showing the true power of the Mindflayer, and how it will go about its desire to take over the world from its lair in the Upside-Down. The director and producer of the show, Shawn Levy, had previously explained how the long delay in the filming of Season 4 had actually allowed the show's creators and writers, the Duffer brothers, to turn out an exceptional set of screenplays for the upcoming episodes.
"I'll just say the [global lockdown] definitely massively delayed shooting and therefore the launch of our current Season 4, date still TBD. But it impacted very positively by allowing the Duffer brothers, for the first time ever, to write the entire season before we shoot it and to have time to rewrite in a way that they rarely had before so the quality of these screenplays are exceptional, maybe better than ever."
Created by the Duffer Brothers, Stranger Things stars Winona Ryder, Millie Bobby Brown, David Harbour, Finn Wolfhard, Gaten Matarazzo, Caleb McLaughlin, Noah Schnapp, Natalia Dyer, Charlie Heaton, Joe Keery, Priah Ferguson, Cary Elwes, Jake Busey, Maya Thurman-Hawke and Ethan Thurman-Hawke. Season 4 has yet to receive a release date. Check out the entire interview with Finn Wolfhard at CBC.