STRANGER THINGS 3 Receives First Look Photos As Duffer Brothers Tease A "Theme Of Change" For The New Season

STRANGER THINGS 3 Receives First Look Photos As Duffer Brothers Tease A "Theme Of Change" For The New Season

Stranger Things 3 is being described as the Duffer brother's "most unapologetically fun season" yet. But the series creators also teased that the upcoming season will be the most "horrifying and intense."

It was a pretty big week for Stranger Things as Netflix released a series of character posters and a fun partnership with Coca-Cola that will see the temporary revival of New Coke. We also got to see Billy Hargrove, played by Dacre Montgomery, shirtless by a pool as part of a new clip for Season 3.

Closing out the week, EW shared some exclusive first look photos from the upcoming season, as well as some commentary Matt Duffer, who created the series alongside his brother, Ross.

“We wanted to explore the theme of change. The season takes place during the last summer before high school. The kids are growing up, and that transition is going to be messy and awkward and painful. Are they able to grow up without growing apart?

This sentiment was teased heavily in the trailer for Stranger Things 3 as it featured brief clips of Mike (Finn Wolfhard) reminding the audience, "We're not kids anymore. What did you think, we're just going to sit in my basement all day and play games for the rest of our lives.?" While the context was missing, what Mike is heard saying rings true. The kids of Hawkins, Indiana have grown quite a bit from when we first saw them in 2016. And while it has only been three years, they've undergone the most change from season two to season three. That's evident in the trailer for Season 3.

Matt Duffer was quick to remind fans that despite all the personal changes the characters are going through, the Mind Flayer still poses a threat to Hawkins. "Oh, and their hometown is still a hot spot for a lot of interdimensional terror. “Eleven closed the Gate, but the Mind Flayer is still alive in the Upside Down,” he teased. “It will find another way into Hawkins.… It’s just a matter of time.”

In a separate article, Ross and Matt Duffer called Season 3 "our most unapologetically fun season," but added "it is also our most horrifying and intense season. It's this wild mix of tones that we think really sets this season apart." While they didn't get into specifics, the brothers revealed some films that inspired Stranger Things 3:
  • Fast Times at Ridgemont High
  • The Thing
  • Romancing the Stone
  • Midnight Run
  • Indiana Jones
  • Jurassic Park
  • The films of David Cronenberg
That's a pretty solid list, but also interesting to see that none of the films from 1985 (Back to the Future, The Goonies, The Breakfast Club, Weird Science, to name a few) made the list. While they may not have served as inspiration, the Duffer brothers are known to incorporate fun easter eggs that reference the time period; New Coke, for instance, which came out in 1985, will apparently be featured within the season.

Some of the cast also weighed in on their character dynamics this season. David Harbour, who struggled with raising Eleven in season two, must now navigate parenthood as the telekinetic teen is now in a relationship with Mike. “It thrusts him into a discussion with Joyce [Winona Ryder],” Harbour said. “She’s able to offer me some advice on how to deal with being a single parent and how to, like, you know, stop being so damn controlling.” 

“This season, Hopper does a lot of really big, like, action-y things,”
he added. “But he’s fatter than you’ve ever seen him and less capable of hurting people, but a little more capable because he’s just like a big elephant.”

And yes, fans will get to see more of Steve and Dustin team up. The two formed an unlikely bond in Season 2 and apparently we'll get more of that in Season 3. 

Stranger Things Season 3 premieres on Netflix on July 4.
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