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Note: This article contains spoilers from Stranger Things 4: Volume 1. Proceed with caution if you’re not caught up.
Much has been said about the arrival of Eddie “The Freak” Munson (played by Joseph Quinn) in Stranger Things 4, including the inspiration the beloved new character takes from Damien Echols of the West Memphis Three. Among the litany of memorable Eddie scenes from the first volume of the Netflix series’ fourth season is a woods-set meeting with fellow series newbie and Hawkins High cheerleader Chrissy Cunningham (played by Grace Van Dien), who unfortunately meets a grisly end at the hands of Vecna shortly after.
Speaking with TVLine on the scene in question, which sees Eddie and Chrissy meeting up for drug-related reasons due to the former unknowingly showing symptoms of a Vecna targeting, series creators Matt and Ross Duffer revealed they were surprised enough by the palpable chemistry between the two characters to regret the premiere episode kill-off.
— Stranger Things 4 (@StrangerNews11) May 29, 2022
As Ross explained, the scene in the woods was actually shot after the completion of Chrissy’s uniquely unsettling death scene and was done fairly late into the overall Season 4 production. Matt, meanwhile, connected the feeling of seeing how well the two characters played off of each other to the inherent difficulties of previously killing off fan-favorite characters like Sean Astin’s Bob Newby.
“We always have those moments [of ‘What have we done?’],” Matt told the publication in an interview shared over the weekend. As for the woods scene, Matt added, much of the credit for its heavily rewatchable success goes to the actors themselves.
“It was just one of those fortunate scenes where we were able to have two cameras rolling capturing them simultaneously,” he said. “Joe was doing a lot of stuff kinda spontaneously, and we were getting these amazing reactions from Grace.”
— Grace Van Dien (@GraceVanDien) May 30, 2022
Special praise was given to Van Dien, who managed to get viewers “to care” despite only appearing in a small number of scenes. The filmmakers also have intentions of working with Van Dien again in the future, though specifics are unclear.
With Stranger Things 4: Volume 1 having now been out in the world for a little over a week, we’re now less than a month away from the premiere of Volume 2, which is comprised of two supersized episodes titled “Papa” and “The Piggyback,” respectively. The latter was recently confirmed to span just under two and a half hours in length. The Duffer Brothers recently teased that “everybody is in danger” going into Volume 2, per Variety.
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