The town Hawkins, Indiana isn't safe just yet, and a beloved hero will still be helping figure things out. The popular Netflix series is about to start filming new episodes, and Stranger Things Season 3 will have a lot more Steve Harrington. Steve is a fan favorite from the show, known for fighting demo-dogs, giving terrible dating advice, and revealing his Farrah Fawcett hair secrets. On Sunday, the cast and crew for the popular Netflix series appeared on a panel for PaleyFest at the Dolby Theater to discuss the show's future. Executive producer John Levy announced Steve would have more of a role in future episodes, capitalizing on enthusiasm for the character.
In the first season of Stranger Things, Steve was known most for being Nancy's controlling boyfriend. While he eventually picked up on the whole monster-invasion situation and got it together, he could be a bit of a jerk. The second season gave the character a new, post-breakup arc — by turning him into everyone's dad. Steve's unexpected babysitter role inspired an entire meme called Dad Steve, and after the season premiered fans online were living for this character development.
"We'll definitely get to see some more of Steve Harrington in season three, and I'll just say we won't be abandoning the Dad Steve magic," Levy said during the panel according to The Hollywood Reporter. "I don't want to say much more, but I literally feel that we were walking along and we stumbled onto a gold mine with Dad Steve."
Steve and Nancy split in the beginning of Season 2, and it was sort of a relief. Instead of spending too much time on the love-triangle plot, the show used the heartbreak to give Steve more depth and push him toward a different story. Teaming up with the kids and armed with a spiked baseball bat, he became one of the season's unlikely heroes. It's a better developed, funnier arc for Steve, and fans are glad the character was done justice. In Season 3, the producers should give both Nancy and Steve the chance to explore more meaningful plot lines instead of just rehashing their romance, and it seems like that's the plan.
However, there is romance on the horizon, and the producers also revealed that Eleven and Mike would be in a relationship at the beginning of the season. The two tween characters have been close since the beginning of the series, but Eleven disappeared at the end of the first season. In the last episode of the second season, the two finally reunited at the school dance.
Max, Season 2's new character, will also be dating Lucas. However, the producers did hint that both these middle school romances will definitely complicate the friend group. "Mike and Eleven and are going strong, so that's a relationship that continues, and same with Mad Max and Lucas. But again, they're like 13 or 14-year-old kids, so what does romance mean at that stage of life?" Levy said. "It can never be simple and stable relationships and there's fun to that instability."
The cast doesn't have the scripts yet — Millie Bobbie Brown, who plays Eleven, reportedly learned about the relationship on the red carpet. The producers did reveal the third season would go into production soon, but the show doesn't yet have a release date. "We are going back to work this month," Levy said. In early January David Harbour, who plays Sheriff Hopper, said in an interview with Collider that the show was slated to film in March or April and the new season would have eight episodes.
The Hollywood Reporter also shared some additional details the producers revealed on the panel. The series will also have two new recurring characters. One will be Lucas' sister, Erica, whose hilarious one-liners made her a social media sensation. The new season will give Erica a more significant role and establish her as a series regular. The show will also introduce a new character, Robin, a woman who learns of the town's hidden secrets. Levy also revealed that the show will have new 1980s references, including Back to the Future.
Stranger Things is one of the biggest breakout hits on Netflix so far, and it's second season didn't disappoint. The show is under even more pressure from fans going into Season 3, but it seems like the show runners have good ideas for the new season. At the very least, bringing back more of Steve in his babysitter dad role is going to make fans happy.