Stranger Things is an American science fiction horror web television series created by the Duffer Brothers and released on Netflix. The siblings also serve as executive producers with Shawn Levy and Dan Cohen. The first season, broadcast in 2016, stars Winona Ryder, David Harbour, Finn Wolfhard, Millie Bobby Brown, Gaten Matarazzo, Caleb McLaughlin, Natalia Dyer, Charlie Heaton, Cara Buono, and Matthew Modine, with Noah Schnapp and Joe Keery in recurring roles. For the second season, Schnapp and Keery were made series regulars, as were newly cast Sadie Sink, Dacre Montgomery, Sean Astin, and Paul Reiser, with Priah Ferguson appearing in a recurring role. Maya Hawke joined the cast for the third season, while Ferguson was promoted to a series regular.
Set in the fictional town of Hawkins, Indiana, in November 1983, the first season focuses on the investigation into the disappearance of a young boy amid supernatural events occurring around the town, including the appearance of a girl with psychokinetic abilities who helps the missing boy's friends in their search. The second season, titled Stranger Things 2, is set one year later in October 1984 and deals with the characters' attempts to return to normality and the aftermath of the events from the first season. The third season, titled Stranger Things 3, is set in July 1985 and focuses on the characters growing up amidst several threats during the Fourth of July.
The Duffer Brothers developed the series as a mix of investigative drama alongside supernatural elements portrayed with childlike sensibilities. They set the series in the 1980s and created an homage to the pop culture of that decade. Several themes and directorial aspects were inspired and aesthetically informed by the works of Steven Spielberg, John Carpenter, and Stephen King, among others, including several films, anime, and video games.
The first season of eight episodes premiered on Netflix on July 15, 2016. It received critical acclaim for its characterization, pacing, atmosphere, acting, soundtrack, directing, writing, and homages to 1980s films. The second season consisting of nine episodes was released on October 27, 2017. A third season consisting of eight episodes was released on July 4, 2019. In September 2019, the show was renewed for a fourth season. The Duffer Brothers have said that Stranger Things is likely to end after its fourth or fifth season. The series has received 31 Primetime Emmy Award nominations, including for Outstanding Drama Series, and four Golden Globe Award nominations, and it won the Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series in 2016.