Netflix released its first look at Stranger Things 4 with a trailer that gifted fans a major update on one of their favorite characters. No, it's not Eleven, Dustin, or even Steve Harrington. Instead, our first dive into the upcoming fourth season of Stranger Things takes us to Jim Hopper. Yes, that's right, Hopper is alive — and bald. But while alive, it seems safe to say that Hopper may not be altogether well.
In the first trailer for Stranger Things 4, series creators Matt and Ross Duffer brings fans to what appears to be a frozen Russian tundra where armed Russian guards oversee a group of prisoners hard at work on building a railroad. Fans of the series will likely remember the third season ended with Hopper appearing to sacrifice himself to save Joyce, Eleven, and the gang at the Soviet lab underneath Starcourt Mall. While viewers never actually see Hopper die as the gateway to the Upside Down closes, it's made abundantly clear that he's missing in the season's final scenes.
In a statement released to Deadline alongside the new trailer, the Duffer brothers confirmed that Hopper is still alive. "We're excited to officially confirm that production on Stranger Things 4 is now underway — and even more excited to announce the return of Hopper," the entertainment news outlet reported the Duffer brothers wrote.
But although he's alive, Hopper appears to be far from Hawkins, Indiana, and far from being out of trouble. "It's not all good news for our 'American,'" the Duffer brothers' statement read. "He is imprisoned far from home in the snowy wasteland of Kamchatka, where he will face dangers both human… and other." (Fans may remember that the show hinted at a move away from Hawkins when announcing a fourth season in September.)
While the Stranger Things 4 trailer released Friday didn't give viewers a peek at Eleven, Mike, Will, Joyce, or anyone back in the United States, the Duffer brothers told Deadline things aren't all good there either. "Meanwhile, back in the states, a new horror is beginning to surface, something long buried, something that connects everything," the brothers' statement read.
The Stranger Things creators vowed that the series' fourth season was "shaping up to be the biggest and most frightening season yet." However, with filming only just recently reported to have begun, it remains unclear when Stranger Things 4 will hit Netflix, although many media outlets have guessed a late 2020 release date.
Until then, the Duffer brothers have one piece of advice for fans: "pray for the American," the told Deadline in a statement.