This article contains significant Stranger Things season 4 spoilers.
It’s good to know that Stranger Things’ fifth season will have shorter episodes than its predecessor.
It’s good to know that Stranger Things’ fifth season will have shorter episodes than its predecessor. Duffer brothers – Stranger Things’ co-creators – confirmed on the Happy Sad Confused podcast that season 5 won’t be as long as season 4.
Matt Duffer said we don’t expect [Season 5] to be as long because it’s almost a two-hour ramp-up before our kids get drawn into the supernatural mystery this season. It’s going to be moving fast, I’m not sure if it’ll be 100 mph at the start of Season 5, but I’m sure it’ll be fast.”
That’s fantastic news to me, dear reader. In our review, we said Stranger Things season 4 was a “triumphant horror-fueled return.” The show’s lengthy episodes didn’t bother me either, as they were necessary for its multi-narrative approach and character development, especially for newcomers like Joe Quinn’s Eddie Munson (RIP).
Nevertheless, Stranger Things 5 is returning to the show’s roots with its shorter episodes. The reasons for this are numerous.
In Hawkins, the show’s central characters have been reunited after spending the entirety of season 4 apart.
Season 5 won’t have to cover multiple locations if the Indiana town is the only location where the story takes place. The episodic runtimes of season 5 will be significantly shortened because there will be no myriad narratives to follow.
We are genuinely in the endgame with Stranger Things season 5 set to be the last in the mainline series – the Duffer brothers plan to make one or two spin-offs.
In season five, the Hawkins gang will fight Vecna and the Upside Down’s other horrifying creatures for the last time, so we won’t see much character development or the introduction of new characters.
I’m okay with that. Stranger Things season 5 should focus on the protagonists’ fight against the Upside Down. As the season 5 credits roll for the final time, we want our heroes’ stories to be wrapped up satisfyingly.
There are some fundamental questions Stranger Things needs to answer in its fifth season. Max is still alive, right? Vecna has disappeared. Where is he? How does The Shadow work? When Henry Creel (aka Vecna) first arrived in the Upside Down, it was a stormy wasteland; why did it become such a dark, dingy place? What is the reason for Upside Down‘s seeming adherence to 1984? Can we expect to see number eight – aka Kali Prasad?
Season 5 demands action – Hawkins and company taking the fight to the Upside Down in a bid to save the world – while simultaneously focusing on the core group of heroes we’ve been following since the Netflix show premiered in July 2016.
You won’t need episodes longer than an hour if you focus on this merry band. According to their Happy Sad Confused podcast discussion, the Duffer brothers plan a lengthy Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King-style finale for the show’s final season.
The season 5 overarching storyline will also be tighter and more cohesive as it focuses on one location and follows Stranger Things’ main characters. Season 5 will evoke the tone, aesthetic, and tight-knit feeling of the show’s first season by keeping the gang together and collaborating more closely.
For Stranger Things to remain relevant and fulfill the Duffer brothers’ ambitions for their story, it had to evolve as a television show. With each season, the series has become more expansive and creative.
Fans hold a special place in their hearts for Stranger Things’ first season. Despite being released at the right time, Stranger Things’ mix of 80s nostalgia, original story, and talented cast made it an overnight sensation in 2016. Even though it wasn’t extravagant by any means, it became a global phenomenon nonetheless.
In Season 5, the story should follow the blueprint of the first season, focusing on a core group of characters fighting for the world’s survival against a supernatural threat. As a result, it will have shorter episode runs than season 4, with runtimes of 45 to 55 minutes each.
Depending on the story they wish to tell, the Duffer brothers may decide to write another supersized season for the show’s fifth and final entry. Even so, I think a season of shorter episodes would be a fitting and satisfying ending to the series. Duffers won’t hear me complain if that’s their choice.
Check out our Stranger Things season 4 volume 2 ending explanation. Explore one fan favorite’s potential departure for season 5.