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Ahead of the Stranger Things 4 premiere at the end of May, Netflix announced that the wildly popular '80s-inspired series would come to an end after a fifth and final season. While two episodes of the latest season still remain, don't expect them to end on a happy or definitive note. "Usually at the end of a season, we tie things up with a nice bow, before a little tease that says, 'Hold on, something is unraveling,'" co-creator Matt Duffer explained to Empire for the magazine's latest issue (now on sale). "As we move into Season 5, we won't have to do that. There won't be a reset from where we finish this season."
Vol. 2 of Stranger Things 4 is slated to premiere on Netflix Friday, July 1 (you can watch the teaser trailer here) with a pair of jumbo-sized adventures that will make the first seven look like a leisurely walk in the park. The finale in particular is a beast, clocking in at two-and-a-half hours and containing "more FX shots than the entirety of Season 3," Matt teased, later adding: "Volume 2 really takes what we did in Volume 1 and ramps everything up."
His brother and fellow series co-creator, Ross Duffer, promised "an hour-long chunk in the final episode that just doesn't stop. It's the most complicated thing we've ever attempted to do." The penultimate chapter, on the other hand, "is all tension and dread with a runtime that would be long even for a movie. Then — well, everything goes to hell..."
Based on the footage available to us so far, it looks like our separated heroes will reunite, properly arm themselves (Red Dawn-style... Wolverines!), and bring the fight to Vecna. A resident of the Upside Down, the show's antagonist was revealed to have deep ties to the town of Hawkins in Episode 7.
"One of our favorite things in horror films is seeing our protagonists be proactive," Ross said. "You know in The Lost Boys when they decide to go after the vampires? It's fun to see people come up with a plan and try to outsmart the villain. That's what Volume 2 is about. But, of course, not everything goes to plan..."
And for those of you still jamming out to Kate Bush's "Running Up That Hill (A Deal with God)," start preparing yourself for what is sure to be an emotional reprisal of the song in the Season 4 finale. According to Ross, the track enjoys a "really special spot" in Episode 9. "She's been nothing but cool," he said of Bush. "We keep going back to her like, 'Can we use the song here? How about here?' I hope we're not annoying!"
The Duffers both wrote and directed the two episodes of Vol. 2.