“Stranger Things” season four, part one: The beginning to an end

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Willow Bowen, Reporter

“Stranger Things,” an ’80s inspired show created by The Duffer Brothers, has just released part one of a fourth season on May 27, 2022.

“Stranger Things” follows the story line of a group of friends: Mike Wheeler, Dustin Henderson, Will Byers, and Lucas Sinclair. When their friend Will goes missing, the group of friends meet Eleven, a girl with telekinetic powers that has escaped from a secretive experimental lab. Living in the small town of Hawkins, Illinois, they soon start to notice more and more strange occurrences happening all around them ever since the disappearance of their friend (Will). With the help of Jim Hopper (the Chief of Police) and Joyce Byers (Will’s mother), the kids are able to have guidance through the horror of their lives. Throughout the seasons you see this group of friends fight monsters like the Demogorgon, Mind Flayer, and in season four, a being called Vecna. If you haven’t watched the fourth season part one yet, then you’re in luck because this will be a spoiler-free review. Although, I will be talking about topics shown in the trailers released. 

If you weren’t scared while watching “Stranger Things” during the previous seasons, then you will be now. While I was watching, I noticed that this season has a way darker and more sinister tone. The jump from the bright colored and fun Starcourt Mall shown in season three to the gray reality of the upside down is chilling. There were a few times I was even caught off guard by some of the scenes used. In one of the trailer clips, you even see the character Max (Sadie Sink) rising into the air quite literally defying the laws of gravity. Seeing this was like experiencing something straight out of “The Exorcist.” Another spooky thing that viewers can expect to see this season is a darker side of Eleven (Millie Bobby Brown). The audience truly hasn’t seen the side they are about to show. Big steps were taken because this is not the vibrant and upbeat season that we have just come from. 

Something that makes this show so popular with its viewers is the way the characters are able to touch the audiences hearts. I personally think that the chemistry that the characters have with one another will never die and it continues to thrive throughout season four, part one. One thing that I was disappointed with though was the amount of screen time character Will Byers (Noah Schnapp) is given. He’s honestly a very neglected character who has so much potential of being more than the kid who was trapped in the upside down. I would also say that this has been a similar problem for Lucas Sinclair (Caleb McLaughlin) in the past, but I’ve actually seen an increased amount of story his character is getting. On a positive note though, the shows did introduce more characters including Argyle (Eduardo Franco) and Eddie Munson (Joseph Quinn). These characters have been receiving a lot of love from the audience and I think creating lovable characters is one of this show’s specialties. You will be on the edge of your seat the whole time, praying that your favorite character is spared from harm’s way.

“Stranger Things” is the perfection of cinematography and musical scores. Sometimes I even think that the music created by composers Ilaiyaraaja, Kyle Dixon, and Micheal Stein for the show could literally bring me to tears. The soundtrack is one of the best that I had ever heard in all existence. I haven’t experienced the ’80s but somehow this music makes me nostalgic for what it was like. The song that I think has the best representation of the show is “Kids” and every sound makes you feel emotional. The song of this season that brought the show to life is “Running Up That Hill” by Kate Bush and I thought this was a really beautiful song that played during the scenes. The cinematography is also something that I hold close to my heart: it’s easy to be biased when the show even makes riding a bike cinematic. The scene in the trailer that shows Max looking into what looks like a part of the upside down is truly horrifying and beautiful at the same time. Instead of the expected blue haze of the upside down we are engulfed in red everywhere with the image of debris scattered in the air. I don’t think I’m ever disappointed with the cinematography of the show. 

I would say that the long wait of three years was definitely worth it. I was on the edge of my seat for almost the entire time of season four part one. “Stranger Things” genuinely holds a close place in everyone’s heart that watches it and I feel like I can say that with confidence. Even though the show has taken a darker approach, I still feel the lighthearted essence that each and every character brings. This season is a beginning to an end because sadly it’s been confirmed that next season will be the final. It is definitely exciting to start seeing everything piece together making one big connection.

I would give season four part one a 5/5 rating. It truly does deserve it, and if you were disappointed with this season, you have to look at the bigger picture and how things are developing. I highly recommend this show to anyone reading but keep in mind it does have a PG-13 rating. Have fun watching and enjoy it while it lasts.