‘Stranger Things’ season 4 could run into a problem with Winona Ryder

Chris Smith

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Stranger Things is easily one of the most popular shows in Netflix history and the company isn’t done with it just yet. A few days ago we learned that season 4 will start filming soon, which might mean Netflix plans to release it as soon as next year. The fight against the scary creatures from the Upside Down is certainly not over, especially considering how season 3 ended, and the showrunners might have plenty of stories left to tell. But the kids are growing up fast, which means Stranger Things might evolve beyond the ’80s in the upcoming seasons.

Season 3 takes place in 1985, and there’s no telling when the action takes us next. For that reason, people have realized that the show has a fantastic, hilarious Winona Ryder/Lucas paradox that needs to be explained.

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I’m not talking about Lucas Sinclair, played by Caleb McLaughlin in the series, but of Ryder’s Lucas. The actress, who plays Joyce Byers in the Netflix show, made her Hollywood debut in 1986 in a rom-com called Lucas. She was only 15 at the time, but her performance was good enough to catch the attention of Hollywood and she appeared in a couple of well-known dark comedies including Bettlejuice (1988) and Edward Scissorhands (1990).

It’s very likely that those ’80s kids, including Joyce’s son Will and his friends, would want to watch these movies. That’s because Stranger Things made it clear so far that it loves pop culture, and the show is filled with amazing references — Vulture has a great collection for season 3.

So what happens when the kids realize that young Ryder looks a lot like Joyce, especially given all the paranormal things they’ve witnessed in recent years? Will they think there’s some connection between Winona and Joyce? On the other hand, doppelgangers do exist in real life, so that’s one way to address the problem.

Hopefully this will be explained in the series, rather than being completely ignored. If this type of paradox sounds familiar, that’s because we’ve seen similar ones in a different universe, Marvel’s MCU, where certain characters happen to look a lot like famous actors from iconic films that are part of the MCU’s own pop culture. Yes, we’re talking mostly about Samuel L. Jackson, but he’s not the only one.

It’s obviously not known whether the showrunners will bother to address the matter in Stranger Things seas 4. Mashable pointed out the paradox to Stranger Things executive producer Shawn Levy, though the exec didn’t say whether real-life Winona has anything to do with the Upside Down.

That’s really funny, and I suppose it’s possible? We’re definitely trying to make the show as quickly as we can. We’re not in control of those things, but we don’t want to bullshit about those things.

That means we’ll just have to wait for Stranger Things 4 to hit Netflix to see how they deal with this particular paradox.

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