Netflix has unveiled the running times for all nine episodes of the fourth season of Stranger Things.
The first part of Stranger Things season four will debut on Netflix a week today (May 27), with the season’s first seven episodes dropping then. The second installment will follow on July 1 and include just two episodes.
It was bizarre enough that Netflix decided to break the fourth season of Stranger Things in half to begin with, let alone its choosing to stop at seven episodes of a nine-episode run – but now we know why. Those final two episodes? Well, they’re basically movies.
As revealed on Netflix’s official blogTudum, the season’s seventh episode, which has not been shown to reviewers ahead of time, will come in at a whopping 98 minutes (or one hour and 38 minutes).
The two remaining episodes, which are due to drop in July, are both just as meaty. The season’s eighth episode comes in at 75 minutes, or one hour and 25 minutes, while the season finale is going to be almost two-and-a-half hours. Yikes…
That means the show’s fourth season, despite technically only being nine episodes in all, will run to over 13 hours. For comparison, you could watch every film in the Mission: Impossible series in the same time period, and you would still have 10 minutes left to make a cup of coffee…
A supersized season
We perhaps shouldn’t be surprised by this news. Everything in the build-up to the new season of Stranger Things has suggested that Netflix executives have given its creators, the Duffer Brothers, carte blanche to go and explore whatever they liked, no matter the time or cost required.
A report released a few weeks ago put the cost of every episode in Stranger Things season 4 at $30 million per episode, meaning the final bill for the series came to a staggering $270 million.
By way of comparison, the final season of Game of Thrones cost $15 million per episode, while The Mandalorian, Disney Plus’ megahit Star Wars spin-off, cost around the same for each episode.
Stranger Things has one season left to go after its fourth run and, let’s face it, it’s unlikely that the hit TV series will become shorter and cheaper in its final flourish. The accountants at Netflix must be rather nervous about what The Duffer Brothers will cook up…