Season 3 of Netflix's highly acclaimed Stranger Things is finally here folks!
After an almost two-year wait since we last visited Hawkins back in October 2017 it's finally time to join Joyce, Jim, Eleven, Mike and co. on another 80s-themed sci-fi adventure.
Stranger Things 3 continues the story we've followed for the past two seasons.
With new threats, characters and relationships to captivate us, season 3 is looking like it'll be a real treat but just who are the main players in the cast for the new season and episode 8? [spoilers ahead]
What happens in episode 8?
Episode 8 sees the final confrontation between our gang of young heroes and the vicious Mind Flayer.
The almost vomit-inducing opening scene sees Eleven's leg get fixed after the bite from the Mind Flayer in the previous episode.
The season 3 finale sees the gang going on the offensive in an effort to finally defeat the Mind Flayer.
While the kids take refuge in the Starcourt Mall, Jim, Joyce and Murray infiltrate the secret Russian base in order to close the gate into the Upside Down.
Billy Hargrove returns to the Starcourt Mall to wreak havoc alongside the dominant Mind Flayer.
The climactic final episode sees Billy killed as he stands up to the mighty Mind Flayer. More tragically though, Jim Hopper is killed in a heart-wrenching moment as Joyce manages to shut the gate to the Upside Down.
Who are the main cast members in episode 8?
Millie Bobby Brown as Eleven/Jane Hopper
Who is Eleven? Eleven is arguably the central character in Stranger Things as her discovery in season 1 eventually led to what the gang hoped would be the end of the threats from the infamous Upside Down. Eleven has psychokinetic abilities after years of being experimented on at the Hawkins Laboratory before escaping in season 1. It's revealed that Eleven is, in fact, Jane Ives, the daughter of Terry Ives. However, after being adopted by Jim Hopper she takes on his surname.
What else has Millie Bobby Brown been in? Like Finn Wolfhard, Brown's acting career is starting to pick up and her role in Stranger Things has no doubt helped with that. Her first film role came earlier this year in Godzilla: King of the Monsters and she's expected to reprise that role in 2020's Godzilla vs Kong.
David Harbour as Jim Hopper
Who is Jim Hopper? Hopper is Hawkins' police chief. After Eleven is found at the Hawkins laboratory, Hopper takes custody of the young girl to look after as his own to give him a fresh start after troubled relationships in the past drove the police officer to alcoholism.
What else has David Harbour been in? Most recently, you're likely to have seen David Harbour in the 2019 reboot of Hellboy, or at least trailers for it, as it bombed hard at the box office. Roles Harbour will likely look back with a bit more fondness include Brokeback Mountain, Quantum of Solace and The Equalizer.
Winona Ryder as Joyce Byers
Who is Joyce Byers? Joyce Byers is the mother of the ever-unfortunate Will Byers and his brother Jonathan. Byers has been present in a central role since season 1 of Stranger Things and that continues into the new series as her love affair with police chief Jim Hopper takes centre-stage in season 3.
What else has Winona Ryder been in? Winona Ryder has received Golden Globe end Screen Actors Guild nominations for her role in Stranger Things but the Netflix series is far from the only thing she's appeared in. Ryder's first major role came in the instantly recognisable Beetlejuice and his since gone on to star in the likes of Edward Scissor Hands, Alien Resurrection and 2009's Star Trek reboot.
Dacre Montgomery as Billy Hargrove
Who is Billy Hargrove? Billy is the older and abusive step-brother of Max Mayfield. The mullet-sporting lifeguard is careless, rash and easily dislikable and is the subject of the Mind Flayer's sinister plan in season 3.
What else has Dacre Montgomery been in? Montgomery's biggest film role to date came as the Red Ranger in 2017's Power Rangers movie. In the world of TV, Stranger Things is his only work so far.
The rest of the cast in episode 8
Finn Wolfhard as Michael 'Mike' Wheeler
Who is Mike Wheeler? Mike Wheeler is the son of Karen and Ted Wheeler. He's joined in the show by his two sisters one of whom is Nancy who we'll get to shortly. Mike starts life in the show as one of four friends alongside Will Byers, Dustin Henderson and Lucas Sinclair. After he and his friends discover Eleven, he starts to develop feelings for her which is something that is likely to cause rifts in the group as season 3 rolls around.
What else has Finn Wolfhard been in? Despite only being 16-years-old, Wolfhard already boasts an impressive filmography that features both IT and IT: Chapter 2 with future rolls also coming up in The Goldfinch, The Addams Family remake and 2020's Ghostbusters.
Maya Hawke as Robin
Who is Robin? Robin is an 'alternative' girl, not really fitting in with the crowd. She's seen to be bored of her job at the ice cream parlour until she stumbles onto one of Hawkins' sinister secrets.
What else has Maya Hawke been in? Hawke's biggest role to date came in the BBC miniseries Little Women. However, there is a promising future on the cards with a role in Quentin Tarantino's Once Upon a Time in Hollywood which is set to hit cinema screens later in 2019.
Joe Keery as Steve Harrington
Who is Steve Harrington? Harrington begins Stranger Things as the boyfriend of Nancy Wheeler and spends the early episodes trying to further exclude school outcast Jonathan Byers, a move he later regrets. In season 2, he is befriended by Dustin.
What else has Joe Keery been in? Keery has seven film credits to his name but the biggest is 2017's Molly's Game that also starred Jessica Chastain, Idris Elba, Kevin Costner and Michael Cera. In terms of TV roles, Keery has appeared in four shows but the biggest is easily Stranger Things.
Noah Schnapp as Will Byers
Who is Will Byers? Will is the show's central character in season 1 after he goes missing in the mysterious dimension known as the Upside Down. In season 2, Will gets more bad luck after he becomes the host for the Mind Flayer.
What else has Noah Schnapp been in? Schnapp's acting career got off to an impressive start with roles in Bridge of Spies, The Peanuts Movie and The Angry Birds Movie. His only major TV role is in Stranger Things but has also appeared in an episode of Liza on Demand in 2018.
Sadie Sink as Maxine 'Max' Mayfield
Who is Max Mayfield? Max, who is introduced in season 2, is the younger step-sister of Billy Hargrove and is the tomboy of the group, instantly catching the attention and affection of both Lucas and Dustin. Eventually, it's Lucas she decides on.
What else has Sadie Sink been in? The highlight of Sink's film career so far has been appearing alongside Brie Larson and Woody Harrelson in The Glass Castle while her TV career features roles in the likes of The Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt and American Odyssey.
Gaten Matarazzo as Dustin Henderson
Who is Dustin Henderson? Dustin is one of the long-time friends of Mike, Lucas and Will. His character, much like Gaten Matarazzo has cleidocranial dysplasia which causes him to lisp. Season 3 starts with Dustin returning from summer camp ahead of the gang's fresh adventure in the new season.
What else has Gaten Matarazzo been in? As things stand, Matarazzo's career features just his appearances in Stranger Things and his work on the series The Blacklist.
Caleb McLaughlin as Lucas Sinclair
Who is Lucas Sinclair? Lucas Sinclair is one of Will Byers' friends and naturally joined the hunt for him when Will disappeared in season 1. Lucas was wary of Eleven shortly after her escape from the labs but has since befriended her. Season 2 saw Lucas become the love interest for Max Mayfield.
What else has Caleb McLaughlin been in? The highlight of McLaughlin's fledgeling film career so far is the voice role of Tico the Squirrel in the upcoming Dora and the Lost City of Gold. His TV career has been more prominent so far but his biggest role is by far Stranger Things.
Natalia Dyer as Nancy Wheeler
Who is Nancy Wheeler? Nancy Wheeler is the older sister of Mike and when we last saw her, she had just broken up with Steve Harrington in favour of a new relationship with Jonathan Byers.
What else has Natalia Dyer been in? Dyer's first-ever film role came in 2009's Hannah Montana movie which also happens to be the most recognisable movie in her filmography. Stranger Things is the 24-year-old's only TV credit so far.
Charlie Heaton as Jonathan Byers
Who is Jonathan Byers? Jonathan is the older brother of Will and the son of Joyce. He is close with his family but an outcast at school. The aspiring photographer starts dating Nancy Wheeler at the end of season 2.
What else has Charlie Heaton been in? Heaton as appeared in several films to date, the biggest of which is easily the X-Men spin-off The New Mutants which is currently in post-production. Heaton's TV roles aside from Stranger Things include appearances in the BBC's Casualty and ITV's Vera.
Francesca Reale as Heather
Who is Heather? Heather, who is introduced in season 3, is a popular lifeguard in Hawkins and becomes the central figure in a dark new mystery.
What else has Francesca Reale been in? Reale is set to appear alongside Stranger Things co-star Natalia Dyer in Yes, God, Yes which is set to release later this year and will be her first film role. In TV, Reale has appeared in 16 episodes of Haters Back Off and also a single episode of Blue Bloods before a possibly career-changing role in Stranger Things.
Caro Buono as Karen Wheeler
Who is Karen Wheeler? Karen is the mother of Nancy, Mike and toddler Holly.
What else has Cara Buono been in? Buono's first film role came in Gladiator but not 2000's Ridley Scott masterpiece but the 1992 Rowdy Harrington effort. Other major film roles in her career include appearances in 2003's Hulk and 2015's Paper Towns. Her extensive TV career includes roles in shows such as The Sopranos, Mad Men and of course, Stranger Things.
Cary Elwes as Mayor Kline
Who is Mayor Kline? Kline is set to take on the role of an antagonist in season 3. The Hawkins mayor, much like most politicians is only concerned with his own image, rather than helping the people of the town. The new mall we've seen in the trailers was his brainchild.
What else has Cary Elwes been in? Elwes's career has been a busy one to date. Arguably his most iconic role came in 2004's Saw and has also appeared in the likes of Robin Hood: Men in Tights and the 1994 live-action remake of The Jungle Book where he appears alongside Game of Thrones' Lena Heady as well as Sam Neill and John Cleese.
Brett Gelman as Murray Bauman
Who is Murray Bauman? Bauman assists Jim and Joyce in their work to uncover the reason behind the Russian involvement in Hawkins' new Starcourt Mall.
What else has Brett Gelman been in? Gelman will be most recognisable for his recent role in Phoebe Waller-Bridge's Fleabag.
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