The second season of Netflix's spooky, nostalgic, and instant hit Stranger Things can't come soon enough. But until Season 2 arrives a few days before Halloween, there are always some spoilers to hold fans over. It's been a long 14 months since the first season made its glorious debut, and star Gaten Matarazzo (Dustin) knows that giving up some hints is the least the crew could do for its committed fanbase.
When the story returns, it's likely the big questions will be answered: Why did Will (Noah Schnapp) throw up a slug and what happened to Eleven (Millie Bobby Brown)? While the trailer proves these mysteries will be addressed in a matter of time, the Indiana gang rocked by the deadly Upside Down will have more issues on their hands in no time. Matarazzo gives Season 2 hints, including new characters, the fate of a lost character, and how the beloved ones have grown.
Fans quickly grew to love the Goonies-like crew of the show. But according to Matarazzo, they'll be dealing with some newcomers soon. "I’m excited for fans to see how the characters interact with other characters that they haven’t really interacted with before," the 15-year-old says. "Little crossovers between groups of different people in the show [are] gonna be really cool." Dustin will certainly be a part of that. "My character has some really cool interactions and he changes a lot throughout the season," he says.
Creators Matt and Ross Duffer have hinted at the introduction of new characters before.
"We would introduce some new characters, but follow this group," Matt previously told Collider. "We fell in love with the kids and all of our actors, so we want to stay with them." With such a dynamic story, there are certainly lots of opportunities to meet new characters. Some could be part of the group that fans never knew existed (perhaps to be revealed in episode nine, "The Lost Brother"). New characters could very well be other kids or residents of Hawkins as well.
And of course, there's the possibility of new characters coming from other towns. "We will venture a little bit outside of Hawkins... the opening scene does not take place in Hawkins," Matt also previously revealed. As teased in the Season 2 poster, maybe more characters will come from the Upside Down. (As Cinema Blend pointed out, the Dungeons and Dragons game played in Season 1's finale could hint at a new monster.)
Still, characters established in Season 1 will remain the stars. Except for one, of course.
Fans are still wondering: What happened to Barb (Shannon Purser)? There's good news and bad news for fans holding out for Barb's revenge. According to Matarazzo, "there will be justice for Barb." The Upside Down captured and killed Nancy's (Natalia Dyer) innocent best friend, and it will have hell to pay. "She has passed, she is dead, but we will be going into her story," the actor reveals.
Sadly, though, Barb's chances of somehow surviving like Will did are basically nonexistent. "[That] would be a little far-fetched, I think," he says. "The character was written to die, to have a defenseless, underdog killed to show nobody is safe." No trending hashtag could change their minds. "Bringing her back would defeat the purpose of showing innocent people being killed," he says. Hopefully Barb will be Hawkins' only member killed by the Upside Down.
And since it doesn't seem Season 2 will pick up right when Season 1 left off (because, let's face it: puberty), the boys will have matured a bit and fans will get to know each of them better. "We get to see [Dustin] grow as a character rather than just in a group," he says. And fans have a lot of catching up to do with Will beyond getting to know him through flashbacks.
"You get to see a lot of Will," he says. "Last season he was gone, this season he’s back and you get to see how he’s dealing with it. He really is just the center of attention, I gotta say." And according to the actor, his co-star is crushing it. "I’m really excited for people to see him."
These two aren't the only ones who have evolved. Over the summer, some cast members teased how their characters would be when they return in Season 2. While Eleven (Millie Bobby Brown) is still living off Eggos, she's sad without the guys. Mike (Finn Wolfhard) takes a break as the group leader, and Will, of course, has the Upside Down aftermath to deal with.
Regardless of new characters and plots, one thing is certain: Too much has already happened for anyone to remain the same.