The reviews are in for the third season of Netflix’s sci-fi nostalgia fest Stranger Things, and it’s good news for fans of Eleven and the gang.
Critics have lavished praise upon the new run of the 80s-set series, with the show already certified ‘fresh’ on Rotten Tomatoes with a 93% approval rating.
The regular promises from creators the Duffer Brothers, as well as the core cast, that the show would be scarier and gorier appear to be justified, with multiple reviews praising “gruesome” elements of “body horror” within the story.
Plot details are still fairly scarce, with Netflix handing critics a detailed list of topics to avoid in their reviews so that surprises would be preserved.
What viewers are allowed to know in advance is that summer has come to Hawkins, Indiana, and that the relationship between Finn Wolfhard’s Mike and Millie Bobby Brown’s Eleven is in full swing.
Meanwhile, Nancy (Natalia Dyer) and Jonathan (Charlie Heaton) are working as interns at the local paper and Cary Elwes has joined the cast as a rather slimy mayor.
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Naturally, the town doesn’t stay quiet for very long.
Here’s what some of the positive reviews had to say...
Radio Times: “The equal of its predecessor in terms of pure enjoyment but still eventually devastating, with a shocking and emotionally-charged conclusion that will ring out on social media for weeks to come.”
Variety: “I left [season 3] assured that as long as the series keeps pushing beyond what initially made it work, it will have more story left in the tank yet.”
Empire: “The John Carpenter-inspired body horror combined with a Body Snatchers subplot succeeds in changing things up and the characters benefit enormously from the season’s more mischievous tone.”
Metro: “It has a lot to offer and it delivers in nearly everything it has promised us over the past year-and-a-half.”
IndieWire: “Pretty fun, very bright, and streamlined to deliver sensory overload.”
Den of Geek: “The creep factor is back in a big way this year, and the fear will manifest both in the story’s action sequences as well as Eleven’s forays into the dark corners of her mental void.”
Stranger Things 3 did not get away scot-free, however, with some reviews pointing out that the show isn’t perhaps as willing to innovate as it should be to ensure its future.
The Hollywood Reporter: “It is, indeed, bigger and not better. It's also bigger and not deeper.”
Daily Telegraph: “Over-familiarity is the biggest issue in an eight-part series that refuses to stray from the Goonies-meets-Stephen King formula.”
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Stranger Things 3 will be available on Netflix from 4 July.