Running Up That Hill by Kate Bush tops music charts thanks to Stranger Things

Sadie Sink
Stranger Things 4 brought another 80s classic back to the charts this weekend. Pic credit: ©

Warning: This article contains spoilers for Stranger Things Season 4, Volume 1.

Stranger Things began its tale in 1983 and has followed the children as they grow up, gain new friends, and face new evils, human or otherwise. While many things throughout the show are consistent and important, one thing sticks out to fans: The music. 

Season 1 showed the importance of The Clash’s Should I Stay or Should I Go between Jonathan Byers and his missing brother, Will Byers. Throughout the first season, the song was featured to represent Will trying to break through from the Upside Down. 

This time around, the writers took 1985 hit Running Up That Hill by Kate Bush and brought it back to the charts, all while it plays a vital role in Max’s storyline this season.  

Running Up That Hill at No. 1 after Stranger Things 4 release

Max is still mourning the loss of her stepbrother Billy throughout Season 4 and seems to find solace by listening to Running Up That Hill. The song frequently plays in her storyline and even saves her life, as her friends use it to break her free of Vecna’s spell.

After the release of Season 4 on Friday, Deadline reports that Running Up That Hill claimed the No. 1 spot on the iTunes chart this weekend. USA Today has the song at 13 on Spotify’s Worldwide Top 200, 42 on iTunes Top 100: Global, and 10 on iTunes’ Top 100: UK.

When Running Up That Hill was first released, it was Kate Bush’s biggest hit of the time and the first single off her album Hounds of Love. It would reach 30 on the Billboard Hot 100 when first released. In 2020, Meg Meyers’ covered the song and brought it to No. 1 on Billboard’s Rock Airplay chart.

This isn’t the first time the hit show has brought back a song from decades past.

In Season 3, producers brought back the theme song to the fantasy film The NeverEnding Story by Limahl. YouTube revealed that searches for the music video went up 800% after the Stranger Things episodes came out.

Winona Ryder pushed for Kate Bush’s music in Stranger Things

Although it may not have ultimately been up to her, Winona Ryder previously admitted that she was a big fan of having Kate Bush’s music on the show and dropped hints on set to have her music included. 

Winona revealed, “I’ve been obsessed with her since I was a little girl. I’ve also for the last seven years been dropping hints on set wearing my Kate Bush T-shirts.” 

Winona said that Bush was a “hero of mine’ and comforted her during school. 

Whether or not Winona Ryder is the reason for Running Up That Hill being on Season 4, it looks like fans agree that the song is a hit based on its new placement on the charts at almost 40 years old. 

Stranger Things Season 4 Volume 1 is now streaming on Netflix. Volume 2 will be released on July 1.

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