With less than two weeks to go before the third season of Stranger Things premieres, Netflix felt fans needed one more reason to will July 4 to come sooner: by releasing the final trailer for the upcoming season. And it’s a doozy. A dark, dismal doozy.
First of all, it’s nearly three minutes long so it almost feels like they were preparing viewers for a big-screen actioner, as things somehow get even more terrifying in the town of Hawkins. The gang is all back—Eleven (Millie Bobby Brown), Mike (Finn Wolfhard), Lucas (Caleb McLaughlin), Will (Noah Schnapp) and Dustin (Gaten Matarazzo), to Hopper (David Harbour) and Joyce (Winona Ryder) to Nancy (Natalia Dyer), Jonathan (Charlie Heaton), Steve (Joe Keery), Max (Sadie Sink) and Billy (Dacre Montgomery), who may have the most integral role this season of all.
The trailer opens with a haunting voice declaring, “You let us in … and now you are going to have to let us stay.” A perplexed Eleven thought she closed the gate to the Upside Down for good, but Will wonders if it somehow ended up locked there with them.
Let’s just say if the rag-tag crew thought they had to fight hard before, this time around, the evil monster from the Upside Down—which seems stronger and scarier than ever before—is putting them to the test. We see an axe-wielding Jonathan, Nancy with her handy-dandy shotgun, Steve holding a container of green slime, before we hear that same haunting voice from the beginning vowing, “We are going to end you, we are going to end your friends … and then we are going to end everyone.” Who is this “we” you speak of, ominous voiceover?
“No matter what happens, we have to stop him together,” said Mike. And he ain’t kidding. The trailer ends with one of those classic Hollywood sequences, where the group hides from an unseen monster hunting for its prey, then we see its giant claw, and, bam! The scene cuts to black while we’re left listening to the creature’s chilling roar.
If the trailers aren’t enough, here’s what you need to know about Stranger Things‘ newest season, based on Netflix’s description: “It’s 1985 in Hawkins, Indiana, and summer’s heating up. School’s out, there’s a brand new mall in town, and the Hawkins crew are on the cusp of adulthood. Romance blossoms and complicates the group’s dynamic, and they’ll have to figure out how to grow up without growing apart. Meanwhile, danger looms. When the town’s threatened by enemies old and new, Eleven and her friends are reminded that evil never ends; it evolves. Now they’ll have to band together to survive, and remember that friendship is always stronger than fear.”
Somehow, the stakes seem higher, the setting darker, and Hawkins (and perhaps the rest of the world?) feels more apocalyptic than in past seasons. What began as a Goonies-like mystery quickly evolved into a frantic, Ghostbusters-like second season, to what now appears to be a full-blown edge-of-your-seat horror flick where we don’t know who’ll make it out alive. Whew.