By THOUSIF INC
This fourth season is divided into an uneven heap of long and longer episodes.
The seven droppings this week range from 63 to 98 minutes.
Then two more will drop in July, clocking in at nearly 1.5 and 2.5 hours, the latter longer than most feature films.
In the summer of 2016, the first season had a quaintness in both story and format (despite the gore).
It was reminiscent of the Stev(ph)ens Spielberg and King.
However, it also was a delicious and taut set of hour-ish chapters that felt like addictive, unmissable, old-fashioned TV.
It might have been the zenith of the binge-watch and the best use to which Netflix ever put the "just let it roll to the next episode" brilliant-slash-diabolical technical flourish.
Stranger Things is ungainly, bulked up by more extravagant and ambitious "wow" effects sequences.
Even if it were not, just as you can sometimes watch a successful author's books get fatter and more deferentially edited.
This show has entered the sphere in which, if there were ever any rails to fly off, they are likely long gone.
The budget has ballooned, the running time has ballooned, and there is more-more-more of everything.
Four stories began with the fracture at the end of season 3.
However, they are separated by geography, making the divisions stricter than usual.
There is an Eleven story, a Joyce-and-maybe-Hopper story, and a Mike/Will/Jonathan story.
All of those are located in different places outside the central part of Hawkins.