‘Stranger Things’ Officially Replaced, Netflix Heading in New Direction

in Entertainment, Updates

Stranger Things stars Gaten Matarazzo, Finn Wolfhard, and Sadie Sink

Credit: Netflix

Update: Stranger Things has officially begun filming for its fifth and final season. Netflix’s Wednesday is also expected to begin filming on its second season later this spring.

There have been few shows that have become more popular than Netflix’s Stranger Things over the last six years.

Stranger Things, a highly popular science fiction-horror franchise created by the Duffer Brothers, has captivated audiences with its nostalgic homage to 1980s pop culture, compelling characters, and supernatural mysteries.

Will Byer and the rest of the Hawkins team of heroes look up as a storm approaches their hometown at the end of season 4 of Stranger Things.
Credit: GamesRadar

The core of the franchise is the original TV series, which premiered on Netflix in 2016. Set in the fictional town of Hawkins, Indiana, during the 1980s, the show kicks off with the mysterious disappearance of a young boy named Will Byers (Noah Schnapp). As his friends and family search for him, they uncover a series of supernatural events involving a secret government laboratory, a young girl with psychokinetic abilities known as Eleven (Millie Bobby Brown), and a parallel dimension called the Upside Down.

The show brilliantly blends elements of horror, supernatural, and coming-of-age drama, making it a massive hit. It continued with two more seasons, each building on the mysteries and characters introduced in the first season. Stranger Things 2 (2017) delved deeper into The Upside Down and introduced new threats, while Stranger Things 3 (2019) focused on the group of friends navigating the challenges of growing up while dealing with supernatural forces. Finally, Stranger Things 4 was released in May of last year and received critical acclaim for its nine episodes, which dealt with a new threat for both the Earth and The Upside Down.

Stranger Things broke numerous streaming records in each of its debuts, including Season 4’s debut, which saw 286.79 Million hours viewed in its premiere weekend. Though fans have hoped that the popular show would continue forever, Netflix has confirmed that it will be moving on in a different direction soon.

Stranger Things 4 ensemble cast
Credit: Netflix

The Stranger Things cast has been headlined by numerous young and talented actors, including Millie Bobby Brown as Eleven, Finn Wolfhard as Mike Wheeler, Gaten Matarazzo as Dustin Henderson, Caleb McLaughlin as Lucas Sinclair, Noah Schnapp as Will Byers, Winona Ryder as Joyce Byers, David Harbour as Chief Jim Hopper, Natalia Dyer as Nancy Wheeler, Charlie Heaton as Jonathan Byers, Joe Keery as Steve Harrington, Sadie Sink as Max Mayfield, Maya Hawke as Robin Buckley (introduced in Season 3), Priah Ferguson as Erica Sinclair (introduced in Season 2). However, just like any good thing, it must come to an end at some point.

Though Stranger Things Season 5 has been confirmed– and writers have reportedly returned to work to begin crafting the final season— the streaming platform has already been looking towards the future when Stranger Things is no more. The popular television show has a prequel stage play– Stranger Things: The First Shadow— that features an all-new cast, and the Duffer Brothers have already confirmed that they’re working on a spinoff series for the television show, but no other details have been given at this time.

stranger things cast
Credit: Netflix

So, what does Stranger Things‘ replacement plan look like? Well, it seems the company will rely heavily on Jenna Ortega and her hit series. It was recently reported that Netflix was attempting to expedite the production of both Stranger Things and Wednesday, but with Stranger Things nearing its conclusion, there’s a growing buzz about what series might step in to fill the void it leaves behind, and it seems that Wednesday is going to be positioned as Netflix’s new flagship show, with multiple reports indicating that the streaming platform hopes to have multiple more seasons with Jenna Ortega before the show reaches a conclusion.

The first season of Wednesday achieved a remarkable milestone by surpassing one billion viewers, trailing only behind Stranger Things Season 4 and Squid Game in terms of popularity. The continued narrative development and expansion in upcoming seasons provide Wednesday with a significant advantage and the potential to become an even bigger phenomenon than Stranger Things before it’s all said and done.

Jenna Ortega as Wednesday Addams in Wednesday
Credit: MGM Television / Netflix

Netflix needs a replacement, and it’s clear that Wednesday will get the first shot. The television series’ first season went about as well as the streaming platform could’ve hoped, and now fans are already lined up and anxiously awaiting Season 2 of the program. Netflix needs to have content perform at a high rate if it’s going to keep its controversial password rules in place and maintain an audience, so it will be interesting to see if Wednesday is able to do just that as it moves into the role of becoming Stranger Things‘ official replacement atop the Netflix charts in the future.

You can currently stream Stranger Things and Wednesday on Netflix.

What do you hope the future holds for the Stranger Things franchise and Netflix? Let Inside the Magic know in the comments!

This article was originally published on October 2, 2023.

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