When is Stranger Things season 2 released on Netflix? Who’s in the cast? What’s going to happen?

Netflix's breakout sci-fi series is returning for more this Halloween – watch ALL the new trailers, check out the new characters and try to guess what's going to happen right here

Stranger Things 2

Stranger Things, Netflix’s breakout sci-fi horror series, is back for a second series in 2017, and it can’t come soon enough.

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With the return of the series confirmed last year, fans have had months to wait for the second instalment. Well, it’s not long now…

Here’s everything we know about Stranger Things season 2 on Netflix. For more exclusive content, download the Radio Times special Stranger Things digital edition now.

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Updated 18th October 2017


When is Stranger Things season 2 released on Netflix?

The second season of Stranger Things would be released on Halloween in 2017 according to a teaser trailer revealed during the Super Bowl in February.

However, a poster reveal for the new season later confirmed that the actual Stranger Things season 2 release date is Friday 27th October, four days before Halloween on 31st October.

This makes sense for Netflix, which prefers to release its big shows on Fridays. However, it has occasionally broken this rule before, most notably with House of Cards season five on a Tuesday (30th May).

Stranger Things’ release date means fans could have already binged on the whole season before Halloween itself.

Is there a trailer?

Check out the first full trailer for Stranger Things season 2 below, and see what we spotted in the new footage here.

There’s also a new teaser, with an eerie shot of the pool where Barb met her unfortunate end (or did she?)

Another full trailer was released during Comic-Con, complete with Vincent Price, Michael Jackson and all manner of brilliant 80s horror references.

Then there was this third and final trailer released, appropriately, on Friday the 13th. We’ve got chills, and it’s not just because of the snowy setting.

Millie Bobby Brown also introduced a special clip ahead of Comic Con London, showing Eleven apparently escaping the Upside Down.

How many of of the season one cast are returning for season two?

All of the main cast of kids are back, including Millie Bobby Brown as Eleven along with co-stars co-stars Gaten Matarazzo, Caleb McLaughlin and Finn Wolfhard. A picture from the read-through showed the gang back together (although you’ll need to to flip the screen to see it).

Who will be joining the cast for season two?

Child actress Sadie Sink (below) is joining the show as Max, “a tomboy with a complicated history and a suspicious streak”. Australian actor Dacre Montgomery is also joining the cast as Max’s older brother Billy, “a classic girlfriend-stealing bad boy”.

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But it’s not just new teens; show bosses have also confirmed that Paul Reiser, Linnea Berthelsen and Sean Astin will be joining the team.

How many episodes will there be?

Stranger Things will return with nine episodes, one more than the eight eps of season one.

A teaser trailer (above) revealed the episode titles for all nine instalments. They are:

MadMax
The Boy Who Came Back To Life
The Pumpkin Patch
The Palace
The Storm
The Pollywog
The Secret Cabin
The Brain
The Lost Brother

When is Stranger Things season 2 set?

The action takes place in 1984, a year on from the events of season one (season 1 spoilers to follow).

“It’s a year later in the story, so there are several things that happened last year, like Will has come back,” said actor David Harbour, who plays Chief Hopper. “There are certain people in the town that know what happened, and then certain people that don’t know what happened. So there’s a lot of fall out with who knows what.”

Hence the Ghostbusters costumes in the trailer above – that movie was released in 1984, along with Gremlins, Aliens AND Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom. Basically, the creators won’t be short of movie references.

What’s going to happen in season two?

UPDATE: A new feature in US magazine Entertainment Weekly has given us a preview of how the season will play out. Check it out here.

Director Shawn Levy said that the series will deal with what it means to try and ‘return to normal’ after what happened in season one.

“Will Byers was in that Upside Down for a while,” he says. So Season two is about this determined desire to return to normalcy in Hawkins, in the Byers family, in that group of friends, and it’s the struggle to reclaim normalcy and maybe the impossibility of it.”

Executive producer Dan Cohen adds that they are planning to be more ambitious in season two: “We’ll be doing more than just a rehash of season one. We’re coming back with a few new characters, expanding storylines and mythologies, so it’ll feel like the stakes are raised.

“We want a sequel that feels like it’s bigger and badder and darker, while answering more of the questions and getting deeper into what’s going on. [Writers The Duffer Brothers] want it to be that great sequel that is satisfying and yet expands the world.”

The actors too have been teasing how season two will differ from the first offering: Finn Wolfhard, who plays Mike, says that the series will be “more horror oriented”, with the tone taking a darker turn.

Check out our favourite current fan theories and predictions for the new season here,  including the suggestion that Eleven could be set for a family reunion when the show finally returns…

Will Barb be in season two?

It’s one of fans’ most important questions, and the creators know that poor Barb Holland is still on viewers’ minds.

Writer Ross Duffer appeared to be unequivocal when asked about her fate last year. “I mean, yes ― yes, she’s dead. I thought we were pretty clear about that,” Matt Duffer said. “There’s a slug hanging out of her mouth ― out of her dead corpse. And then if you were still confused, [Chief Jim] Hopper finds her in the nest, also very dead.”

However, brother Matt Duffer promised that there would be some “justice” for her character – even if off screen. “Barb will not be forgotten. We’ll make sure there’s some justice for Barb. People get very frustrated, understandably, that the town doesn’t seem to be really dealing with Barb. That stuff is all happening. We’re just not spending any screen time on it.”

Will Stranger Things end after season two?

No! Writers the Duffer brothers have said they know where the story is going for at least season three, and add they have a whole story arc planned for “more than three seasons”.

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And, in another interview, the creators let slip that a third season is already in the works. Given that Netflix tend to book in their biggest shows in pairs, we can assume that Stranger Things season four is highly likely.