With two trailers already released, the long-awaited Season 4 of the Netflix series Stranger Things is closer than ever.

Yet despite the immense hype, we’re still in the dark about a LOT of important details like, y’know, where the plotline picks up from. Even simple things like a release date haven’t been confirmed thus far.

With all this in mind, here’s your complete roundup of what we do know about the upcoming Season 4 of Stranger Things on Netflix.

When will Stranger Things Season 4 premiere in Australia?

Season 4 of Stranger Things was confirmed by Netflix in September, 2019, so it’s not a matter of if, but when.

“We’re excited to officially announce that production for Stranger Things 4 is now underway – and even more excited to announce the return of Hopper!” Stranger Things creators Matt and Ross Duffer told Entertainment Weekly in 2020.

Fast forward to May, 2021, and we finally have a trailer for the upcoming season.

Star Finn Woldfard did let slip in a video call that Season 4 should be released “sometime next year”, but it’s not exactly clear whether he just messed up and meant later this year, of if he really did mean that we’ll have to wait until 2022.

What clues are in the Stranger Things Season 4 trailers?

Two of four trailers for Stranger Things have dropped so far. We know that because the descriptions of the first two read “001/004” and “002/004”, respectively.

The first trailer is deliberately cryptic, and we really don’t get to see much. What we can see is at least part of the season will bet set in some kind of Soviet Russian gulag (more on this later).

Meanwhile, the second trailer appears to show that Martin Brenner, the director of Hawkins National Laboratory and surrogate father of Eleven, is alive. That’s because we can hear him call out to Eleven at the very end of the clip.

The last we saw of him was in the Season 1 finale, to this is a pretty big revelation.

There’s also the first teaser, which really only showed a Stranger Things logo. But it was enough for fans to ruminate about the potential ways in which Jim Hopper somehow survived the dramatic Season 3 finale.

Who is returning in Stranger Things Season 4?

Obviously Eleven, played by Millie Bobby Brown, is still in the mix. And from the above trailers, it really does look like we’ll see her with Hopper in ~some capacity~ during Season 4.

Meanwhile, according to the cast list for the first episode (entitled “Chapter 1: The Hellfire Club”), we know Joyce Byers, Mike Wheeler, Dustin Henderson, Lucas Sinclair, Will Byers, Max Mayfield, Nancy Wheeler, Jonathan Byers and Steve Harrington will all be returning.

Whether they’ll play prominent parts throughout Season 4 remains to be seen, however.

Who are the new characters in Stranger Things Season 4?

With the second trailer appearing to be set in some kind of Soviet gulag, it’s no surprise to see a couple of Russian names among the new characters.

Among them are Dmitri (played by Game of Thrones‘ Tom Wlaschiha) and Yuri (played by Nikola Đuričko).

Meanwhile, Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. actor Joel Stoffer will play Warden Hatch, while Sherman Augustus is set to play Lt. Colonel Sullivan.

Other recurring characters will be Victor Creel, a disturbed man who has been imprisoned in a psychiatric hospital, played by Robert Englund, and Virginia Creel, played by Tyner Rushing.

Variety has also reported on a few more recurring characters in and around Hawkins High School who are set to make their debut in Season 4.

They include Vickie, a “cool, fast-talking band nerd” and love interest played by Amybeth McNulty, Patrick, a popular basketball jock played by Myles Truitt, beloved guidance counselor Ms. Kelly, played by Regina Ting Chen, and Chrissy, the most popular girl in school and its star cheerleader, played by Grace Van Dien.

What happened at the end of Season 3?

The last season of Stranger Things ended on a huge cliffhanger. In the season finale, we saw Hopper, Joyce, and Murray head into the secret Russian lab to turn off the machine attempting to re-open the portal.

However this ultimately saw Hopper sacrifice his life in the process. The fact that the creators themselves have confirmed that Hopper is returning really makes you wonder what’s going to happen.

During the final credits, we were treated to a bonus scene set in Kamchatka, a cold and remote region in the far east of Russia. This setting sure looked like what we saw in the second trailer for Season 4.

Why there was such a delay for Season 4 of Stranger Things?

The production of Season 4 of Stranger Things has been plagued with delays due to the pandemic (no pun intended!).

In March 2020, production of all Netflix original shows and movies was halted due to the coronavirus pandemic. Filming for Stranger Things wasn’t resumed until September of that year.

In late 2020, Natalia Dyer (who plays Nancy Wheeler) told Vogue that we need to strap in for the long haul.

“I can’t say a lot, except that it’s going to be a while before it comes out, [but] it will definitely be worth it,” she said.

The upside to this is that the Duffer brothers have had even more time to perfect their script.

“[The delays] impacted very positively by allowing the Duffer brothers, for the first time ever, to write the entire season before we shoot it and to have time to rewrite in a way that they rarely had before so the quality of these screenplays are exceptional, maybe better than ever,” executive producer (and occasional director) Shawn Levy told Collider.

What time period will Stranger Things Season 4 cover?

While the last three seasons of Stranger Things were set in the 1980s, there’s a possibility that Season 4 could jump forwards or backwards in time.

The second trailer does give off vibes slightly earlier than the 1980s, and the fact that it’s set to feature Hopper could mean that, if he really did die in the last episode of last season, then we’ll be seeing an earlier part of his life.

But, like with all things Stranger Things, we’ll really have to wait and see.

How old is the Stranger Things cast now?

The cast has aged a couple of years since Season 1 of Stranger Things., which can obviously make filming a show about a bunch of young school kids tricky.

Millie Bobby Brown (Eleven) is 17, Finn Wolfhard (Mike Wheeler) is 18, Gaten Matarazzo (Dustin) is 18, Noah Schnapp (Will Byers) is 16, and Season 2 newcomer Sadie Sink (Max Mayfield) is 19.

The Stranger Things creators have spoken about likely ending things with Season 4, meaning this will be the final season. What, no Season 5?

“I don’t know if we can justify something bad happening to them once a year,” Matt Duffer told Vulture a few years ago.

It would also make sense if the actors could no longer believable play high school kids to just wrap things up. But as always, we’ll have to wait and see.

We’ll be sure to keep this article updated as more info about Season 4 of Stranger Things emerges. Watch this space!

Image: Supplied