The first 8 minutes of Netflix’s ‘Stranger Things’ are strange indeed — in a good way

Netflix is known for letting its viewers dive deep into hours-long TV binges, where the resolution to cliffhangers often waits just a click away. However, that’s not to say that the streaming service doesn’t know how to tease. A day ahead of the premiere of the new supernatural series Stranger Things, Netflix has dropped a suspenseful and enigmatic first look.

Called The Vanishing of Will Byers, the sneak peek offers viewers a chance to watch the first eight-plus minutes of the creepy series, in which a young boy named Will Byers (played by Noah Schnapp) goes missing. While the series will focus on Will’s friends, family, and local law enforcement seeking out answers and discovering a supernatural mystery, the first look centers mainly on Will himself as it sets the stage for the events to come. We also get plenty of hints about the connection to top-secret government experiments, but the actual forces involved remain obscured, piquing our curiosity.

A so-called “love letter” to ’80s supernatural classics, Stranger Things has numerous familiar elements of horror from empty corridors to a phone receiver left hanging by its cord with the dial tone buzzing. Light is also used very intentionally; throughout the sneak peek, whenever bulbs begin flickering, there seems to be trouble ahead.

In addition to Schnapp, the ensemble cast includes Winona Ryder, David Harbour, Finn Wolfhard, Millie Brown, Gaten Matarazzo, Caleb McLaughlin, Natalia Dyer, Cara Buono, Charlie Heaton, and Matthew Modine. The series is written and directed by brothers Matt and Ross Duffer, who serve as co-showrunners and executive producers as well.  Shawn Levy and Dan Cohen also executive produce, while Levy also directs.

Prepare yourself for Stranger Things to hit Netflix on July 15. It’ll make you want to sleep with the lights on — or, on second thought, avoid them altogether.

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