It’s been nearly six years since the first season of ‘Stranger Things’ debuted on Netflix, and in that time it’s earned seven Emmys and countless hearts throughout the world.
Fans love the program because it sends them on an emotional rollercoaster, with ’80s nostalgia hitting you right in the feelings as you try to catch all the intricacies while following intricate group relationships.
Season 4 has a lot going on. So much so that many people choose to revisit the entire thing, discovering fresh hidden elements and Easter Eggs with each watch.
So we decided to compile a compilation of such treasures to give you even more reasons to love the series. Enjoy!
#1 Ms. Kelly’s Clock Necklace
Chrissy, Max, and other kids receive treatment from Ms. Kelly, the guidance counselor at Hawkins High, for migraines, hallucinations, and depression. Each student is going through some sort of trauma and is feeling some guilt, which Vecna can take advantage of. When they get visions of a grandfather clock and hear chimes and ticking, the students know he is around.
Eddie informs the Hellfire Club that Vecna has disciples who assist him in carrying out his commands, including picking his targets. Ms. Kelly is wearing a clock pendant, which suggests that the arch-lich may have some sort of hold over her.
#2 The Numbers For Surfer Boy Pizza And The Nina Project Really Work
Season 4 introduces more characters and plot twists, such as the enigmatic Nina project of Dr. Brenner and Argyle, Jonathan’s friend who works at Surfer Boy Pizza. The two are implicitly connected when Argyle’s delivery fan transports Mike, Will, and Jonathan as they look for information regarding the Nina project and what it has to do with Eleven’s abilities.
Two smart Easter eggs also connect the two; viewers can really phone the number on the Surfer Boy Pizza van’s side as well as the number scrunched up within the agent’s pen to experience additional interactive content.
#3 Skull Rock Looks Like Vecna’s D&D Lair
As a tradition, Dustin and the Hawkins children give the season 4 antagonist they fight the name of a D&D monster; in this case, the lich Vecna. While Stranger Things omits some details about D&D’s Vecna, he does use his victims’ secrets against them. Dustin is quite similar to the notorious wizard who turned lich after desiring greater power because he is unaware of the origins of Vecna’s powers or his connection to the Hawkins National Laboratory.
After Chrissy dies, Eddie Munson flees to Skull Rock, which is remarkably similar to Citadel Cavitius, Vecna’s hideout after being exiled. It turns out that not far from it is also an entrance to the Upside Down.
#4 All The Sherlock Holmes Quotes
Dustin and Steve love to quote from The World’s Greatest Consulting Detective, but did they have to read Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s works in high school? No super detective is required to understand why it might be anything else.
The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes, a television series on A&E that starred Jeremy Brett as Holmes and David Burke as Watson, debuted in 1984. It was extremely well-liked at the time and ran for ten years, exposing Sherlock Holmes to an entirely new generation of admirers. Dustin’s unexpectedly sophisticated use of Holmes quotes elevates his silly persona, and Steve’s use of Dustin’s quotes to win over Nancy makes him the goofy one.
#5 Horror Movie References
Beginning with Vecna’s victims having hideously distorted bodies like in The Exorcist while presenting himself as an intelligent villain who dwells in a huge creaky Victorian like Pinhead in Hellraiser, Stranger Things season 4 makes allusions to several classic horror films. The popular students throw a milkshake on Eleven, imitating the moment in Carrie where the prom queen gets pigs’ blood thrown on her to the amusement of her friends.
The corridor that Nancy and Robin use to visit Victor Creel at Pennhurst Mental Asylum is remarkably similar to the one Clarice Starling uses to speak with Hannibal Lecter in The Silence of the Lambs. Given that Robert Duvall plays Creel, there is also a reference to movies. The actor who played the iconic horror character Freddy Kreuger, Robert Englund, plays Creel, making him another cinematic reference. The area where Peter Ballard takes Eleven in the seventh episode also resembles Freddy’s eerie boiler room.
#6 Phone Booth Graffiti
A reference to Steven Spielberg’s E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial may be seen engraved above Dustin’s head on the phonebooth when he needs to make a call. The Spielberg classic about a little kid who finds an alien and decides to defend it from government cronies was frequently referenced in Season 1’s plot. Even Eleven dressing up in a wig and using bikes to escape Hawkins Lab employees were featured in the season.
Because Eleven (the “E.T.” in this case) is returning home this season, this hidden detail is a little more specific. She is going back to where it all started by using Hawkins National Laboratory to access her memories for the Nina project.
#7 The Hellfire Club Is A Reference To X-Men
Mike and Dustin play Dungeons & Dragons as a part of the Hawkins High Hellfire Club, which is led by metalhead Eddie Munson, who doesn’t like how everyone in the school thinks of them as freaks for doing so. The Hellfire Club originally appears in 1980’s The Uncanny X-Men #129 as an exclusive secret society at odds with the X-Men.
It’s viewed as an opponent of heroes like the X-Men and has a club consisting of affluent villains, not too dissimilar from the Hellfire Club Eddie Munson established. Even though they had their own goals, some of them, like Emma Frost, went on to become superheroes and disproved her critics. In a similar manner, Eddie finally needs to change Hawkins’ perception of him to something other than a cowardly drug dealer.
#8 Will’s Sexuality
“It’s not my fault you don’t like girls”, Mike yelled at Will earlier in the series when he was spending most of his time with Eleven, one of numerous signs that his best friend might be gay. Will is seen carrying an Alan Turing poster in season 4 for a school assignment. Alan Turing was a well-known mathematician who was detained for being gay in early 20th-century England.
When Will leaves his house with Mike, Jonathan, and Argyle, he’s certain to grab the enigmatic artwork. Eleven says that he “likes someone” because of all the time he spent on the painting. While some fans will surely believe that the Will mystery in Stranger Things hurts Robin’s story, others will appreciate that he gets to reveal who he is in his own time.
#9 Eleven’s Door Left Open Exactly 3 Inches As Per Hop’s Instruction
Eleven has always cared deeply about Hopper, so much so that even though he doesn’t quite meet the requirements, she decides to make him the focus of her research on a well-known historical character. Despite the fact that Eleven’s loss of Hop was among her most difficult experiences, his impact on her life is still clearly visible in season 4.
When Eleven had guests over in season 3, Hopper instructed her to always leave her room door open by three inches. She continues doing this in season 4, revealing small but important information that highlights how much Hopper means to his adopted daughter.
#10 Doctor Brenner’s Crossword Puzzle
Doctor Brenner sits down and starts a crossword puzzle that takes him exactly 10 minutes to finish on September 8th, 1979, the day when Eleven is said to have killed all of the children who are being examined in Hawkins National Laboratory. One word stands out as he quickly travels down the rows and columns, filling up every square: “etiological”.
Etiological is defined as providing a history of something to explain a cause or reason for its creation, which is essentially what season 4 does with so many characters. It delves into Vecna’s beginnings, his impact on the Upside Down, Henry Creel, One, and even Eleven’s early involvement with the Nina project. “Kali,” the name of Eleven’s sister Eight, is another answer in the puzzle.