It’s been more than two years since season 3 of Stranger Things premiered on Netflix, and although it looks like we’ll still have quite a while to wait for season 4, we now have some hints about where the next arc of the hit series will take audiences. Basically, things are going to get even scarier for the gang from Hawkins, Indiana, when the show returns in 2022.
Netflix released a pair of teasers for Stranger Things season 4 during its first-ever Tudum event — a livestream that put a spotlight on some of its biggest upcoming projects and featured trailers, release date announcements, and other promotional elements for Stranger Things, The Witcher, Bridgerton, Cowboy Bebop, and other series. The pair of Stranger Things teasers not only contained some new footage from the upcoming season, but also hinted at a haunted-house vibe for the show’s next arc.
In a trailer titled “Creel House,” a family is shown moving into a new, big house in the year 1959, only to experience ominous flickering of lights and what appears to be a malevolent presence. Things get real dark, real quick in the teaser for the season, which appears to show the aftermath of the husband/father murdering his family. The trailer then flashes forward to 1986, and shows Dustin Henderson (Gaten Matarazzo), Lucas Sinclair (Caleb McLaughlin), Max Mayfield (Sadie Sink), and everyone’s favorite surrogate dad, Steve Harrington (Joe Keery), breaking into the house to investigate, well … something.
The preview ends with a shot of an old clock and the announcement that season 4 will premiere at some point in 2022.
On its own, the “Creel House” trailer is pretty creepy, but the release of the trailer was preceded by another brief teaser for the new season that was even more enigmatic.
Just a day earlier, Netflix released a 12-second video on Twitter promoting the Tudum event that featured a series of old news clippings being scanned from an archive. The clippings reported on the details of a grisly murder that occurred years earlier, with the killer apparently blaming a “vengeful demon” for the shocking murders.
The two videos, taken together, actually make some interesting connections about what to expect from season 4.
003. Tudum. Tomorrow. pic.twitter.com/XstukcMPld
— Stranger Things (@Stranger_Things) September 24, 2021
In November 2020, Netflix announced that horror veteran Robert Englund would be joining the cast of the series for the new season, playing a character named “Victor Creel.” The character was described as “a disturbed and intimidating man who is imprisoned in a psychiatric hospital for a gruesome murder in the 1950s.”
This description, combined with the fact that the actor playing the husband/father in the “Creel House” trailer actually looks like a young Englund, suggests that he’s playing the same character almost 30 years later — when season 4 of Stranger Things is set.
— Robert B. Englund (@RobertBEnglund) November 20, 2020
The strange events we see occurring in the house in 1959 also share some similarities with what Joyce Byers (Winona Ryder) experienced in her own home in the show’s first season — events we later learned were indicative of a a thinning barrier between our world and the dark dimension known as The Upside Down.
With the Hawkins gang investigating Creel House, it appears that a door between our world and The Upside Down might have been opened in the past, and likely played a role in Victor Creel’s murder of his family almost three decades earlier. How that will play into the season’s overall story arc — and how Eleven (Millie Bobby Brown), Jim Hopper (David Harbour), and the rest of the cast will become involved — remains a mystery, of course.