‘Stranger Things 5’ Left Incomplete, Unable to Rejoin Netflix for Years

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A person with a buzzcut and wearing a white sleeveless top is shown yelling intensely. Bright sparks and light erupt behind them in what appears to be a dramatic action scene. The background includes arched structures, suggesting an indoor setting.

Credit: Netflix

Things are moving slow on the Stranger Things front, and now, we have further confirmations of a possibly delayed production.

A young woman dramatically expressing anger or frustration with an outstretched hand toward the camera, surrounded by a crowd of onlookers in a sunny, outdoor setting.
Credit: Netflix

Since its 2016 debut on Netflix, Stranger Things has captivated audiences with its unique tapestry of science fiction, horror, and coming-of-age narratives. The series centers on Eleven (Millie Bobby Brown), a young girl with telekinetic powers, who arrives in the seemingly ordinary town of Hawkins, Indiana.

There, she forms an enduring bond with a group of courageous friends – Mike Wheeler (Finn Wolfhard), Dustin Henderson (Gaten Matarazzo), Lucas Sinclair (Caleb McLaughlin), and Will Byers (Noah Schnapp). Their seemingly ordinary lives are upended as they uncover a terrifying secret: the Upside Down, a parallel dimension harboring monstrous creatures.

Over four seasons, the characters have confronted unimaginable threats, forging an unbreakable bond and discovering their inner strength. Each season has raised the stakes, culminating in epic battles and the emotional return of a beloved character, Hopper (David Harbour), in Season 4. This crescendo of events has intensified anticipation surrounding the upcoming final season.

Two young boys stand in a barren landscape, looking concerned. one wears a neck brace and a plaid shirt, the other a checkered shirt. open sky and dry ground stretch behind them.
Credit: Netflix

A recent glimpse into the filming process offers a tantalizing preview. The image depicts a tense scene featuring Nancy (Natalia Dyer) and Jonathan (Charlie Heaton) in the back of a van seemingly branded with the logo of the local radio station, WSQK 94.5 FM “The Squawk.” Additionally, Joe Keery’s character Steve Harrington and Maya Hawke’s Robin Buckley are seen in what appear to be backstage shots.

Plot details for Season 5 are understandably shrouded in secrecy. However, the cliffhanger ending of Season 4, with Vecna creating a permanent rift between Hawkins and the Upside Down, suggests a monumental confrontation unlike any the group has faced before.

Adding an intriguing layer is Eleven’s regained power. After a grueling ordeal forcing her to confront past traumas, Eleven has not only recovered her telekinetic abilities but also gained a remarkable new power – resurrection. The full extent and impact of this power in Season 5 remain to be seen, particularly considering its use in seemingly bringing Max Mayfield (Sadie Sink) back from the brink of death.

Max Mayfield (Sadie Sink) in a trance in 'Stranger Things' Season 4
Credit: Netflix

While hinting at the possibility of future spin-offs, series co-creator Ross Duffer has emphasized that Season 5 marks the conclusion of the core narrative centered around Eleven, Dustin, Lucas, Hopper, and their interconnected stories. This bittersweet sentiment adds a poignant layer to the excitement surrounding the final chapter of Stranger Things.

“This season – it’s like season one on steroids,” Ross Duffer stated to The Guardian. “It’s the biggest it’s ever been in terms of scale, but it has been really fun, because everyone’s back together in Hawkins: the boys and Eleven interacting more in line with how it was in season one. And, yes, there may be spin-offs, but the story of Eleven and Dustin and Lucas and Hopper, their stories are done here.”

Eleven and Will Byers in Stranger Things season 4.
Credit: Netflix

Most recently, we found out that Stranger Things 5 would not be done filming until January 2025 at the earliest. The production would have wrapped much sooner if it were not due to the SAG/AFTRA strike.

With a 2025 wrap date, and the fact that we know some scenes in season four took up to 5 months to edit, even a 2025 premiere seems like it may not be possible, which leads 2026 to be a strong contender for the release year of Stranger Things 5.

TV enthusiast Relay shared that cast members have noted that they still do not have all of the scripts for the final season, as it is a massive production, and not all scripts are complete.

Caleb McLaughlin and Gaten Matarazzo said that Stranger Things 5 is a MASSIVE production and they still do not have all the scripts.

They also said they are filming out of order so it’s hard for them to piece together, they also eluded to the fact that there is a lot of…

While this is not bad news, per say, it does further prove that Stranger Things 5 is still in the thick of it, and there is still a lot to complete before the show can wrap. If the overall story arc of the show is still being tweaked via the unreleased scripts, that could be a hint of a further delay that could push production back.

Stranger Things 5: Unveiling Secrets and Bringing Closure

While plot details for Stranger Things season 5 are closely guarded, a few tantalizing hints have surfaced to fuel fan anticipation.

The season’s opening lines, hinting at a chilling atmosphere with cold wind, groaning trees, and a child’s song, set the stage for “Chapter One: The Crawl.” This ominous introduction aligns perfectly with the series’ signature blend of suspense and horror, suggesting viewers can expect a continuation of that thrilling formula.

A deeper exploration of Will Byers’ character appears imminent. Given his unique connection to the Upside Down, his role as a “lynchpin” between the two worlds is likely to be further explored.

Season 4 saw a more limited presence for Will, with the focus shifting to Eleven and Vecna. However, the revelation of Will’s sexuality and his renewed connection to the Mind Flayer at the season’s end points towards a more prominent role for him in season 5.

The Duffer Brothers, the series creators, have confirmed this, stating that Will will be “what ties the whole series together.” This expanded role promises to explore not only Will’s evolving identity but also his journey into young adulthood.

Acknowledging that Will’s character arc has been underdeveloped in previous seasons, the Duffers plan to rectify this. Season 5 will not only delve into Will’s sexuality but also showcase his “coming into his own as a young man.”

stranger things
Credit: Netflix

This shift aims to compensate for the past seasons where Will served primarily as a marker of the other characters’ growth while experiencing minimal development himself. Noah Schnapp’s exceptional talent has been underutilized, and season 5 promises to capitalize on his skills by giving Will a central role in the final chapter.

Responding to fan requests, the Duffer brothers have hinted at a deeper exploration of the Upside Down’s lore. While previous seasons maintained an air of mystery surrounding this alternate dimension, season 5 promises to codify its mythology. Fans can expect a season rich in world-building and answers to long-standing questions about the Upside Down’s origins and nature.

The young cast of 'Stranger Things' - L to R: Natalia Dyer (Nancy Wheeler), Joe Keery (Steve Harrington), Gaten Matarazzo (Dustin Henderson), Maya Hawke (Robin Buckley), Sadie Sink (Max Mayfield), and Caleb McLaughlin (Lucas Sinclair) staring in shock
Credit: Netflix

The season will incorporate time jumps, with an initial jump of one year to acknowledge the aging cast. Additionally, the casting of Linda Hamilton (Terminator) suggests another potential time jump, though details remain under wraps. The Duffers have also acknowledged the presence of “last remaining questions” that will be addressed in season 5. These lingering mysteries promise significant revelations that will shape the final chapter of the Stranger Things saga.

In conclusion, Stranger Things season 5 offers a thrilling and revelatory experience for fans. Will Byers’ central role, a deeper dive into the Upside Down’s lore, and answers to lingering mysteries all contribute to the anticipation surrounding this highly awaited final season.

Would you be sad if Netflix did not release Stranger Things 5 until 2026?

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