Stranger Things Season 4’s unconventional structure and delivery model proves that streaming can transcend traditional TV show and film structures.

Netflix changed the way we watch TV and movies, but it wasn’t until stranger things Season 4 that the streaming giant has finally broken long-standing TV and film format rules. As the original streaming platform, Netflix’s subscription and binge models have been major disruptors to many of the mainstream approaches in television and film production, however stranger things Season 4 finally proves what streaming really can do.

As one of the first major streaming exclusive shows stranger things‘ Popularity was huge for Netflix, paving the way for the numerous exclusive, big-budget streaming shows that are now available. In spite of stranger things‘ industry-changing effect, it was still just an eight-episode story you could imagine releasing on every premium TV channel, with the binge model’s only major difference being that audiences didn’t have to wait a week, to see new episodes. In the time since Season 1, many people have begun to question whether the binge model is the best way for streaming services to release content. While stranger things Season 4 stayed with that model (for the most part), making some other fundamental changes to the show that could have far greater implications for future content.


Also see: Stranger Things: Biggest Unanswered Questions and Secrets after Season 4

stranger things Season 4’s two-part release and extra-long episodes (particularly the finale) finally free streaming from antiquated show formats driven by old revenue models. Movies and TV are all taking shape due to the necessary monetization requirements. For example, film runtimes, a defensive issue with directors, are often decided by their ability to sell tickets, sometimes even resulting in additional time being slashed to allow for more showings in a single day (and thus sell more tickets) . Meanwhile, TV shows are structured the way they are because TV stations need to sell ad space, which means they need to create attractive content in multiple short steps to get audiences to watch TV repeatedly at specific times, leaving advertisers for ad space meanwhile want to pay commercial break.

Eleven, Will and Mike in Stranger Things

Networks like HBO and Showtime have introduced a premium model that offers more flexibility in show structure, meaning longer episode running times and fewer episodes overall to deliver tighter stories. But even in the streaming age, the old structures still existed, even if a show on Netflix doesn’t have to attract advertisers (although that’s changing) and ticket sales don’t have to play a role in a film’s runtime. stranger things Season 4’s decision to release in two segments with significantly increased episode running times, particularly for the season finale, which had the running time of a feature film, finally shows how streaming shows and movies can be designed to be story-driven rather than central there are concerns about running times or episode numbers or any anachronisms of old revenue models.

During much of stranger things plays like a traditional show, the longer running times allow each of the separate character groups to focus properly, while a traditionally structured show might need to focus mostly on the kids in Hawkins, while Eleven’s Arc and Joyce and Hopper’s Russian adventure would get trimmed . stranger things Season 4 isn’t unconventional enough to completely shake up traditional story structures and release models common to Netflix, but it does show what’s possible with streaming. Coupled with the massive success of shared universe franchises like the MCU or the streaming success of the war of stars Shows on Disney+ are blurring the lines between blockbuster movies and TV shows more than ever. We’ve only seen the tip of the iceberg of what’s possible when stories don’t have to conform to the demands of anachronistic revenue models.

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