Stranger Things saison 4

Stranger Things season 4 review: Hawkins teen crisis

While the fans have the fangs, and the series promises to show their teeth, season 4 of Stranger Things is it a success? Guaranteed spoiler-free review.

Since its launch in 2016, Stranger Things has established itself as a huge success for Netflix. It was at the time when most of the series of the platform were born from a real artistic ambition, and when the latter still had to prove itself in France. Now well established in living rooms around the world, the N Rouge is no doubt hoping that the return of the child prodigy will restore its image. Guaranteed spoiler-free review.

At a time when the SVOD offer shows a heavy setback in its progress, this new burst of episodes is timely. We find our characters three years after the battle of Star Court, when they have to face the arrival at high school and all the hassles of adolescence. Finally, three years for the spectators, since the plot plunges us only a few months after the summer which changed their lives forever.

Stranger Things
Joyce also has her work cut out for her. Credits: Netflix

Will, Jonathan, Joyce and Eleven moved to California. In a small, sunny town, they try to adapt to this new environment, and some are visibly having more difficulty. Eleven, now named Jane, must face the cruelty of her comrades and all that without magical powers. She also experiences the difficulty of living in a long-distance relationship while Mike is still in Hawkins.

In Indiana precisely, the formerly inseparable group is also broken up. Mike and Dustin have joined the high school “weirdos” as Lucas hangs out with popular basketball players. For her part, Max withdrew into herself after Billy’s death.

A status quo that will be upset when a new tragedy strikes the small town. Our little investigators are certain, it is not the work of a human. Have the doors to the Upside Down been reopened?

The world in four dimensions

Hawkins was the epicenter of the story so far. Although we briefly explored Chicago in Season 2, Stranger Things this time sees things in a big way. The intrigues here are multiple, transporting us as well in Russia, as in California and even in Nevada.

An astronomical amount of information for a sprawling narration, but which the scriptwriters master to perfection. The viewer navigates between these dimensions without ever experiencing the slightest turbulence. Season 4 is a monster of suspense that nothing can resist, and especially not the sleep of the spectators. The fans of Stranger Things should have trouble turning off the TV. The weekend could be tough.

Hopper Stranger Things Season 4
Hopper is in deep trouble. Credits: Netflix

Especially since their brains will be put to the test. We indeed find the dynamics of the first round of episodes, a well-crafted investigative story that contributes to this feeling of permanent tension. If the first episode sounds more like a return to school, things get tough from the second chapter.

Cliffhangers, reversals and big scares, nothing is spared us in what looks more and more like an emotional roller coaster. The experience could even be discouraged for people with heart problems or sensitive souls.

A successful quilt

While our characters mature in this season, the series also makes some changes in its mood and tone. Where the fantastic and the strange tinged the plot so far, it is this time the horror that invites itself to the doors of Hawkins. Inspiration Goonies Where AND has disappeared, we now draw more on the side of classic horror.

The creators have also confided that they drew inspiration from Wes Craven, and in particular Freddie: Claws of the Night. The most observant will notice that a nod to the movies slipped into one of the episodes of this first volume.

In cinematographic mechanics too, it is difficult not to notice this mutation. Volume 1 borrows from 80s slashers, while maintaining its visual identity. The camera rolls are still there, but the lines between the Upside Down and the real world are becoming increasingly blurred.

stranger things season 4
The new BFFs of the series. Credits: Netflix

Gore is no longer reserved for creatures of the upside down world, sensitive souls abstain. Whether Stranger Things never really crosses the line – the series shocks, but does not seek to traumatize – the horror gives it a second wind.

Without saying too much about the plot, we will simply say that these seven episodes surprised us in many ways. The Duffer brothers have understood that their audience has grown in three years, they intend to offer them some thrills for this grandiloquent return.

On the other hand, they do not forget the other inspirations that already infused the series, romantic comedy meets fantasy and science fiction, no doubt, we are always at home. Stranger Things. The retro atmosphere of the late 80s is also still present, for our greatest pleasure.

Almost a historic film (yes the 80s, that was a long time ago) that the youngest spectators will be able to experience as a dive into another world: where the Internet did not exist, and where the mullet cut was cool. If we can be afraid of sometimes bordering on an overdose, this fourth season carefully manipulates the ingredients that punctuate its story, to focus on what ultimately matters most: its characters in search of identity.

endearing friends

They’ve made a nice change from the dreamy kids who used to play Dungeons & Dragons in the Wheeler family basement. Puberty has done its work, and the spectator suddenly takes on a look of old age.

Acne blooms on youthful faces, small downs settle above the lips and the voices are more rocky, it is indeed the hour of adolescence. This blessed period of the first emotions for our favorite teenagers also and above all rhymes with trauma.

This is also the main theme of these new episodes, the exploration of the stigmata of previous seasons. This is particularly the case with Max, played by the extraordinary Sadie Sink. Already brilliant, the young actress pays homage to this new score brilliantly.

All these beautiful people are doing well. The electric Gaten Matarazzo has established himself as a benchmark in the role of service comedian, while Caleb McLaughlin offers more density to his Lucas character. Noah Schnapp is the sweet bond for this new season, having been abused in many ways since the series launched.

Eddie Stranger Things season 4
The new kid on the block, which we already love. Credits: Netflix

Among the newcomers, it is Joseph Quinn in the skin of Eddie who stands out. It offers a nice comedic counterpoint as the dramatic momentum of the plot becomes more insistent. On the other hand, we do not escape the more melodramatic sequences, with grandiloquent speeches on the strength of friendship, forgiveness and love.

This is undoubtedly what makes Stranger Things a real comforter, the screenwriters explore its honeyed moments without complex, as the Amblin films of the 80s could do.

This first part of season 4 is an undisputed success. Despite the length of these episodes, this first volume has some under the pedal. A single shadow darkens the picture: the prospect of having to wait a little over a month to find out what happens next. The final episode promises to be daunting, especially when you know that it will easily exceed the two-hour mark. Summer will be hot and downright creepy. Netflix and the Duffer Brothers treat us, highly July 1!

In the meantime, to refresh your memory, you can watch our recap of previous seasons above.

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