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Stranger Things Season 5 Is Going To Hit The Ground Running, According To Duffer Brothers

It goes without saying that "Stranger Things" is one of the most popular shows Netflix has ever put out, but here's one number to back that up: the most recent season, its fourth, obliterated the record for most-watched English show in its first month, beating out "Bridgerton" Season 2 to rack up 781.04 hours watched–and it only needed 17 days to do it (via IndieWire).

However, "popular" does not mean "perfect." The most common complaint about "Stranger Things" Season 4 is the length. Every episode clocks in at well over an hour, with the super-sized Season 4 finale coming in at two hours and thirty minutes. Plenty of critics complained that Season 4's pacing was slow.

"This past season could have been four hours shorter, and it probably would have been more fun if it was," wrote Jeff Rounder of the Houston Press.

"There is so much empty space in this extravagant, sprawling, indulgent season that entire episodes feel like they exist merely to churn water while waiting for their own climax so everyone can move on to the real thing happening in the next episode," agreed Emma Stefansky of Thrillist.

Henry T. Casey of Tom's Guide pointed out that because Netflix rewards shows for total hours watched, that incentivizes shows to make their episodes longer–to the detriment of the show's quality.

If you count yourself among the fans of "Stranger Things" who thought Season 4 started too slowly or had too much filler, here's some good news about Season 5.

Matt Duffer says Season 5 will be fast paced, with no fluff

The Duffer Brothers spoke about "Stranger Things" Season 5 in an interview last month with Collider.

Matt Duffer explained that because of "Stranger Things" Season 4's ending, "Stranger Things" Season 5 is set up to start quickly. He compared the end of "Stranger Things" Season 4 with "The Empire Strikes Back," which ends on a somber note for the heroes and sets up "Return of the Jedi."

"In an unusual, for us at least, Season 5 is going to start pedal to the metal," Matt Duffer said. "We're not going to do the ramp-up. There's no time. There's no normalcy, obviously, once you've reached the end of four. That's not like there's going to be time to explore our characters' love life and how is Steve's dating going? There's going to be none of that, it's just going to be going 100 miles an hour from the beginning."

That's welcome news for anyone who thought Season 4 had some cuttable moments.

Elsewhere in the interview, the Duffers gave an idea of what that faster-paced Season 5 might look like.

There's a lot of ground to cover in Stranger Things 5

First and foremost, "Stranger Things" 5 is going to pick up shortly after the events of "Stranger Things 4." That makes sense, as "Stranger Things 4" ended with a massive earthquake that nearly destroyed Hawkins. That's already about as high stakes as you can get.

There's also a compelling mystery and a strong villain already in place. As the Duffers explained, "Stranger Things" still hasn't fully revealed the nature of the Upside Down. In Season 4, it was revealed that Upside Down Hawkins is stuck in time. That's a tantalizing tidbit that will be explored more fully going forward. There's also the series' Big Bad, the Mind Flayer, which still hasn't been defeated.

Still, that doesn't mean that the show will ignore its characters and their relationships–always one of the show's calling cards. The Duffers emphasized that unlike last season, now all of the main characters have been reunited in Hawkins. That means there will be some resolution for characters whose relationships have been tested, like Hopper (David Harbour) and Joyce (Winona Ryder), Will (Finn Wolfhard) and Eleven (Millie Bobby Brown), and Jonathan (Charlie Heaton) and Nancy (Natalia Dyer).

It's always difficult for a beloved show to deliver a satisfying finale, but committing to a faster-paced Season 5 with less fluff is a great start.