What years are Stranger Things Season 1 and Season 2 set in?

will mike dustin and lucas of stranger things season 2
Will, Mike, Dustin, and Lucas in the Netflix show Stranger Things. Pic credit: Netflix

With the recent release of the Netflix sci-fi series Stranger Things 3, viewers saw their favorite cast of characters had grown up a bit.

The third season was set in the summer of 1985. It was released a few years after the previous season concluded too.

So what years were Stranger Things Season 1 and Season 2 set in? Keep in mind, there may be some minor spoilers for those who have yet to watch the first two seasons.

 Stranger Things’ first season set in the early 80s

Most fans of Stranger Things love the nostalgic references that the series brings from the 1980s. It all started with Stranger Things Season 1, where viewers first learned about Eleven, a young girl with a mysterious origin and special abilities.

They also met a terrifying monster, along with seeing the Upside Down. The show, which arrived in July of 2016 is considered a “love letter to 1980s sci-fi.”

Stranger Things Season 1 takes place in November 1983. It’s just ahead of Christmastime in Hawkins, Indiana. Viewers see plenty of references to things like ET or Star Wars and hear popular songs from the time period.

Among the tracks on the season’s playlist are Hazy Shade of Winter by The Bangles, Sunglasses at Night by Corey Hart, and Should I Stay or Should I Go by The Clash.

Stranger Things Season 2 picks up a year later

Netflix released the second season of the series on October 27, 2017. The kids are still plodding about and having fun in the mid-1980s in Season 2 of Stranger Things. The year is now 1984, and it’s right near Halloween. Once again, Will Byers is our focal point and Eleven is a major character.

Pop culture references in the new season include things like Ghostbusters, as the kids don the costumes, and also mimic some movie concepts to try to nab aliens.

There’s international tension going on, but also tension from another world. Netflix released a 1984 teaser video for the season which involves other references too.

Runaway by Bon Jovi, Time After Time by Cyndi Lauper, and Every Breath You Take by The Police were among the musical offerings to help bring the season’s setting more validity. Fans had a bit of a break from their favorite show when the season ended too.

The third season features summertime adventure

It was over two years before the Netflix show returned, with a July 4, 2019 release date. Fans immediately binged with great joy.

It’s the summer of 1985 when the characters are seen in Stranger Things Season 3. The thing is, the kid actors are growing up and the season two took years to release. So when they seem slightly older, they are slightly older than how they’d look a year later.

The new season brings references to Star Wars, Day of the Dead, and everyone’s crush of the time, actress Phoebe Cates, among others. Viewers are treated to popular music from the time including Material Girl by Madonna, Cold as Ice by Foreigner, and Never Surrender by Corey Hart.

With that in mind, should a fourth season occur, and it feels like it should, we’d have to expect it to be set in 1986. Viewers can’t get enough of the series, that’s for sure. Will we see Stranger Things go to the early 90s? Fans probably would mind one bit!

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