6 Things We Know About Stranger Things Season 4

Noah Schnapp, Caleb McLaughlin, Millie Bobby Brown, Finn Wolfhard, Sadie Sink, Charlie Heaton, and Natalia Dyer are coming back for more in Stranger Things.
Noah Schnapp, Caleb McLaughlin, Millie Bobby Brown, Finn Wolfhard, Sadie Sink, Charlie Heaton, and Natalia Dyer are coming back for more in Stranger Things.
Netflix

Production on season 4 of Netflix's hit sci-fi series Stranger Things may be on hold due to the coronavirus pandemic, but that hasn't stopped diehard fans from theorizing about what might go down when the series returns.

How many other children did Hawkins Lab experiment on? Has the gate to the Upside Down been closed for good? Did Robin and Steve get jobs at the video store? Only time will tell on those vital matters, but here are some things we know for sure about the next season. Obviously, *spoilers* for all aired episodes of Stranger Things abound.

1. Hopper is alive!

David Harbour in season 3 of Stranger Things.Netflix

Netflix released the first teaser for Stranger Things's fourth season on Valentine's Day, which confirmed what many fans have hoped for since the conclusion of the third season: Chief Hopper is alive! The post-credits scene of the last season took viewers to a Russian prison, where one prison guard references an American prisoner before feeding another very unlucky captive to the Demogorgon. The moment had fans hoping that Hopper had somehow survived the explosion that closed the gate to the Upside Down, and the video confirmed the suspicion that Hopper is indeed alive. However, it seems he is imprisoned at some type of labor camp, and we have yet to learn how his storyline will connect back to the rest of the characters.

2. We'll learn more about Hopper's past.

David Harbour in Stranger Things season 3.Netflix

During a panel at Comic Con Liverpool, David Harbour told fans that the next season of Stranger Things will reveal secrets from his character's past. He explained, "In Season 2, Eleven goes into the basement of the cabin and there’s five boxes, one of which is has stuff from Hawkins Lab, one of which says ‘Dad,’ one of which says ‘Vietnam,' one says ‘New York’ … so there are three things that we’ve established in this scene and if they don’t pay off that means that [the Duffer Brothers] are bad writers … I know specifically that in season 4 we will give you a big, huge reveal about Hopper’s backstory." 

3. One minor character may be returning.

Ross Partridge attends the 2016 premiere of Netflix's Stranger Things in Los Angeles.David Livingston/Getty Images

In March, Netflix released a video on showing the cast of Stranger Things gathering for a table read of season 4. At one point in the video, Ross Partridge can be seen. If that name doesn't sound familiar, he is the actor who plays Lonnie Byers, Joyce's estranged ex-husband and her sons' absent father. Lonnie hasn't made an appearance since the first season, so it will be interesting to find out why he has returned.

4. Parts of season four were filmed in New Mexico.

Millie Bobby Brown and Sadie Sink in Stranger Things.Netflix

According to Collider, parts of Stranger Things's fourth season were filmed in New Mexico. The location shift makes sense, as the end of season 3 saw the Byers family moving away from Hawkins with Eleven. Stranger Things is set in Indiana but primarily filmed in Atlanta, Georgia, so it's possible that New Mexico is just a new filming location and not the new fictional setting. Nonetheless, it makes you wonder where Joyce, Will, Jonathan, and Eleven will be moving to, and how it will affect the dynamic between the characters left behind in Hawkins.

5. Stranger Things is about to get a lot "scarier."

Maya Hawke, Joe Keery, and Gaten Matarazzo in Stranger Things.Netflix

Joe Keery, who plays Steve Harrington, recently spoke with Total Film Magazine about the upcoming season of Stranger Things. “Oh man, it’s pretty amazing—the Duffer brothers have really done it again,” Keery said. “I think that this year—and I know I say this every single year—but this is definitely going to be a lot scarier than prior years, because last year was pretty dark.”

6. The first episode is titled "The Hellfire club."

Sadie Sink, Noah Schnapp, Millie Bobby Brown, Finn Wolfhard, and Caleb McLaughlin in Stranger Things.Netflix

A reported by The Independent, the Stranger Things writers have revealed the title for the first episode of season 4: "Chapter One: The Hellfire Club." Sounds ominous!

Looking to Downsize? You Can Buy a 5-Room DIY Cabin on Amazon for Less Than $33,000

Five rooms of one's own.
Five rooms of one's own.
Allwood/Amazon

If you’ve already mastered DIY houses for birds and dogs, maybe it’s time you built one for yourself.

As Simplemost reports, there are a number of house kits that you can order on Amazon, and the Allwood Avalon Cabin Kit is one of the quaintest—and, at $32,990, most affordable—options. The 540-square-foot structure has enough space for a kitchen, a bathroom, a bedroom, and a sitting room—and there’s an additional 218-square-foot loft with the potential to be the coziest reading nook of all time.

You can opt for three larger rooms if you're willing to skip the kitchen and bathroom.Allwood/Amazon

The construction process might not be a great idea for someone who’s never picked up a hammer, but you don’t need an architectural degree to tackle it. Step-by-step instructions and all materials are included, so it’s a little like a high-level IKEA project. According to the Amazon listing, it takes two adults about a week to complete. Since the Nordic wood walls are reinforced with steel rods, the house can withstand winds up to 120 mph, and you can pay an extra $1000 to upgrade from double-glass windows and doors to triple-glass for added fortification.

Sadly, the cool ceiling lamp is not included.Allwood/Amazon

Though everything you need for the shell of the house comes in the kit, you will need to purchase whatever goes inside it: toilet, shower, sink, stove, insulation, and all other furnishings. You can also customize the blueprint to fit your own plans for the space; maybe, for example, you’re going to use the house as a small event venue, and you’d rather have two or three large, airy rooms and no kitchen or bedroom.

Intrigued? Find out more here.

[h/t Simplemost]

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The Psychological Tricks Disney Parks Use to Make Long Wait Times More Bearable

© Jorge Royan, Wikimedia Commons // CC BY-SA 3.0
© Jorge Royan, Wikimedia Commons // CC BY-SA 3.0

No one goes to Disneyland or Disney World to spend the day waiting in line, but when a queue is well-designed, waiting can be part of the experience. Disney knows this better than anyone, and the parks' Imagineers have developed several tricks over the years to make long wait times as painless as possible.

According to Popular Science, hacking the layout of the line itself is a simple way to influence the rider's perspective. When a queue consists of 200 people zig-zagging around ropes in a large, open room, it's easy for waiting guests to feel overwhelmed. This design allows riders to see exactly how many people are in line in front of them—which isn't necessarily a good thing when the line is long.

Imagineers prevent this by keeping riders in the dark when they enter the queue. In Space Mountain, for example, walls are built around the twisting path, so riders have no idea how much farther they have to go until they're deeper into the building. This stops people from giving up when they first get in line.

Another example of deception ride designers use is the "Machiavellian twist." If you've ever been pleasantly surprised by a line that moved faster than you expected, that was intentional. The signs listing wait times at the beginning of ride queues purposefully inflate the numbers. That way, when a wait that was supposed to be 120 minutes goes by in 90, you feel like you have more time than you did before.

The final trick is something Disney parks are famous for: By incorporating the same level of production design found on the ride into the queue, Imagineers make waiting in line an engaging experience that has entertainment value of its own. The Tower of Terror queue in Disney World, which is modeled after a decrepit 1930s hotel lobby down to the cobwebs and the abandoned coffee cups, feels like it could be a movie set. Some ride lines even use special effects. While waiting to ride Star Wars: Ride of the Resistance in Galaxy's Edge, guests get to watch holograms and animatronics that set up the story of the ride. This strategy exploits the so-called dual-task paradigm, which makes the line feel as if it's going by faster by giving riders mental stimulation as they wait.

Tricky ride design is just one of Disney's secrets. Here are more behind-the-scenes facts about the beloved theme parks.

[h/t Popular Science]