Stranger Things season 4 episode runtimes are in – and we’re in for a long, long ride

Netflix has revealed the broadcast times for the nine episodes of the fourth season of Stranger Things.

The first part of Season 4 of Stranger Things will debut on Netflix in a week today (May 27), with the first seven episodes of the season dropping next. The second installment will follow on July 1 and will consist of only two episodes.

It was kind of weird that Netflix decided to break the fourth season of Stranger Things in two to begin with, not to mention opting to stop at seven episodes of a nine-episode run – but now we know why. Those last two episodes? Well, they’re basically movies.

As revealed on the official Netflix blog, Tudum, the seventh episode of the season, which was not shown to critics in advance, will arrive in 98 minutes (or one hour and 38 minutes).

The remaining two episodes, which are slated to drop in July, are just as meaty. The eighth episode of the season is 75 minutes long, which is one hour and 25 minutes, while the season finale will be almost two and a half hours long. Ouch…

This means that the show’s fourth season, while technically only nine episodes in all, will be over 13 hours long. For comparison, you could watch all the Mission: Impossible films in the same period, and you would still have 10 minutes to make yourself a cup of coffee…

Mike, Dustin and Max look shocked at something off-camera in Stranger Things season 4

(Image credit: Netflix)

An oversized season

Perhaps we shouldn’t be surprised by this news. Everything about the build-up to the new season of Stranger Things suggested Netflix executives gave its creators, the Duffer Brothers, carte blanche to go and explore whatever they wanted, no matter how long or expensive it took.

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A report released a few weeks ago pegs the cost of each episode of Stranger Things season 4 at $30 million per episode, which means the show’s final bill is $270 million.

For comparison, the final season of Game of Thrones cost $15 million per episode, while Disney Plus’ megahit Star Wars spin-off The Mandalorian costs about the same for each episode.

Stranger Things still has a season past its fourth run and, let’s face it, the hit TV series is unlikely to get any shorter or cheaper in its final flourish. Netflix accountants must be pretty nervous about what The Duffer Brothers are cooking up…

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