There’s one thing that you really should know about the Stranger Things 4 finale, even before you end up watching it: It’s long. Really long. This is an episode set to run for two and a half hours. In other words, it’s a movie. The end of season 4 is longer than a lot of big-budget films are.
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Now, let’s go ahead and get into the next big question: Why is it so long? Why couldn’t the Duffer Brothers just split this thing up into two or even three different episodes? There are plenty of arguments here but in an interview with Variety, Ross Duffer explained that it’s really about structure more so than anything else:
“Reel one is build-up dread. Reel two is action, chaos. And then, reel three is our traditional coda, come down after all of that. You didn’t really want to break it after just the build-up. It wouldn’t feel like a satisfying episode. So, at a certain point we just said, ‘Well, it’s just a mega episode.’ If someone wants to pause it, they can!'”
All of this is true, and there really is no denying that you want to tell stories that suit your vision. Of course, that’s still going to be a lot for viewers to sit through.
This finale should prove to be a real test for Netflix when it comes to how future writer-producers can go about structuring their own episodes. Stranger Things basically gets this sort of leeway because it is enormously successful. We are, after all, talking about one of the biggest shows on all of TV! It also generated huge viewership with the first volume of season 4.
What we’re trying to say here is rather simple: There are going to be more long episodes coming.
Why do you think the Stranger Things 4 finale is so long?
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This article was written by Jessica BunBun. Be sure to follow her on Twitter.