Wolfhard, best known for playing Mike on the popular Netflix series, recently appeared on CBC Listen, and provided fans with a few crumbs regarding what they can expect from the highly-anticipated upcoming season. “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,” he said. “Every year, it gets amped up. Every year it gets funnier and darker and sadder, and everything. Every year, they amp it up.”
Wolfhard’s outlook seems to align with what Gaten Matarazzo, who plays Dustin, had to say about Season 4 in an interview with US Weekly last month. “Yikes,” Matarazzo said, adding, “I think most would probably say it’s the scariest [season] out of the previous three, which I love because it’s very fun to film.”
The dark tone of Season 3 was evident when Max’s stepbrother Billy Hargrove sacrificed himself for Eleven after he became possessed by the Mind Flayer. In the season finale, Jim Hopper appeared to give up his life when Joyce was forced to close the gate to the Upside Down while he was still in harm’s way.
On Valentine’s Day last year, Stranger Things released a brief video titled “From Russia with love.” The clip shows that Hopper is still alive, but has somehow found himself in a prison camp in Russia.
While the pandemic forced Stranger Things to halt production early last year, executive producer Shawn Levy said the time off gave the Duffer Brothers the opportunity to fine-tune the scripts, and get themselves in a place heading into Season 4 that they have never been before.
“I’ll just say the pandemic definitely massively delayed shooting and therefore the launch of our current Season 4, date still TBD,” Levy told Collider last year. “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.”