After 3 long years, Stranger Things is finally back and bigger than ever. This season is split into Volume 1 and 2 with the latter coming out on July 1st. The series has outdone itself once again and the storytelling is the best it’s ever been. The Duffer Brothers took big swings and didn’t miss. With many episodes being the length of a feature film, there’s a lot to take in with this very special season.

For the first time ever, the show did something new and risky by choosing to have some of the main characters never interact with one another. Will, Jonathan, and Eleven never interact with Lucas, Dustin, Nancy, Steve, or Robin. While this may seem like a bad choice, fear not, the split story works really well and helps to progress the story. There are many storylines in play this season.  My personal favourites are Hopper’s arc in Russia and the classic Hawkins gang but this way of storytelling doesn’t affect the plot or take away from the other storylines.

The acting this season is, as always, stellar. It’s great to see the cast we know and love back together. However, Sadie Sink as Max is the real MVP this time around. Max has a more prominent role this season and her storyline is a big focus of the first few episodes. Sink shows a new side of Max and gives a very emotional performance that stands out from the rest. Don’t get me wrong, the rest of the cast does an excellent job, but Sadie Sink stands out.

This season is also the scariest one yet. The jump-scares are more frequent and there is a lot of body horror here so if that makes you a bit squirmy, you might now want to watch this season before going to bed. Vecna is the show’s scariest villain yet and his ominous presence is felt throughout the season. There is also a special treat for horror fans this season as horror legend Robert Englund (the man behind Freddy Krueger) makes a surprise appearance.

Overall, Stranger Things 4 Vol.1 is an excellent start to the penultimate season. Each episode feels like a mini-movie and we are so privileged to be able to witness the masterful storytelling of the Duffer Brothers. They’ve done it again!