Netflix renews Stranger Things - should Universal bring it back, too?

September 30, 2019, 4:50 PM · To the surprise of no one who watches TV or the entertainment business, Netflix announced today that it is bringing its sci-fi/fantasy/horror/1980s-nostalgia hit, Stranger Things, back for a fourth season.

For theme park fans, Stranger Things has been drawing new fans to Universal's Halloween Horror Nights in Orlando and Hollywood for the past two years. Last year's house covered the first season of the show, while this year's production covered the past two seasons. With a fourth season now on the way, that raises the question: what could Universal do with another year of Stranger Things?

Netflix did not announce a release date for Stranger Things 4, but it seems highly unlikely that the season will drop in time for Universal to use it as the basis for a Halloween Horror Nights house next year. Universal didn't give season 3 a full treatment this year, so it's possible that Universal could just focus on the Starcourt Mall to squeeze another house before the fourth season drops.

But should Universal keep bringing back any single franchise to Horror Nights year after year after year? One of Horror Nights' great selling points is that it provides a fresh line-up of houses every year. Do fans really want to see Stranger Things at Halloween Horror Nights for three or four years in row?

I'm sure some do. At that point, though, it's worth asking if Universal shouldn't just invest then in creating a year-round attraction based on Stranger Things, the way that it did in Hollywood for The Walking Dead.

Or maybe Universal shouldn't do that just the way that it did for The Walking Dead. Stranger Things is a very different franchise than The Walking Dead, even if both blew up to become pop culture phenomena. Many of fans the old-school Halloween Horror Nights aren't especially fond of what they see as non-horror IP taking slots in the event. Maybe a walk-through maze isn't the best use of the Stranger Things IP in a theme park attraction?

If you believe that, what would you rather see Universal do with this franchise? Should Stranger Things continue as an annual house in Halloween Horror Nights? Should it become a year-round maze (like, or perhaps replacing, The Walking Dead Attraction? Should Universal design some other type of theme park attraction for Stranger Things? Or is it time for Universal to walk away and take a break from Stranger Things?

On your way to debate this in the comments, here is the Stranger Things maze from Hollywood in 2018:

And this year's Stranger Things house from Orlando:

Universal Orlando tickets Buy Tickets: For discount tickets to Universal's theme parks, visit our Universal Orlando tickets and Universal Studios Hollywood tickets pages.

Replies (6)

September 30, 2019 at 5:52 PM

They should nix the Borne stunt show for Stranger Things. In the old terminator store there's a Hawkins Lab Easter egg.

September 30, 2019 at 10:15 PM

One things for sure: they're definitely not gonna just drop it completely. Have you seen how many HHN attendees are wearing Stranger Things shirts and hats? This ain't going away any time soon.

September 30, 2019 at 10:16 PM

Why is the Stranger Things house in orlando lightyears better than Hollywood's version?

October 1, 2019 at 9:07 AM

I think Universal sees the value in having a bankable IP for HHN. The events do need to continuously provide new content year to year, but it order for it to grow, it needs to attract the GP, which a franchise like Stranger Things can do. While a majority of the guests that attend HHN go for the overall event, there are plenty that want to go just to see their favorite IP, so they would be foolish not utilizing a franchise like Stranger Things if a financially viable agreement is feasible.

October 1, 2019 at 4:14 PM

Since next year will be the 30th anniversary in Orlando I want them to go big on original houses. All the characters that have been there over the years like the Caretaker, Jack, Chance...etc should get a house. I love Stranger Things but I think next year they can skip it. I would love an AHS house again which I think would still be a huge draw and it would avoid the repetitiveness of that happened with walking dead. They can bring back Stranger Things for HHN 31.

October 1, 2019 at 5:02 PM

Stranger Things and Ghostbusters are what got me to go to HHN in Orlando for the first time. I've been interested in the event for probably at least 20 years, but these IPs are what finally got me to go. Both IPs really deserve their own year round attractions but in the meantime, HHN is a welcome addition!

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