Season 4 of Netflix’s wildly popular show Stranger Things comes out this Friday, May 27th, after a nearly three-year hiatus.
As reported by Variety, Netflix has added a new warning card to the show following the tragic mass shooting at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas which left 19 children and two teachers dead.
“We filmed this season of ‘Stranger Things’ a year ago,” the warning card reads. “But given the recent tragic shooting at a school in Texas, viewers may find the opening scene of episode 1 distressing. We are deeply saddened by this unspeakable violence, and our hearts go out to every family mourning a loved one.”
Netflix has already released the opening scene of Season 4—you can watch it right here—though it was released prior to the tragic school shooting (though long after countless other similarly horrific shootings across the United States at schools, movie theaters, nightclubs, grocery stores and elsewhere).
The warning will appear before the recap that precedes the opening of Season 4, Episode 1.
Netflix has also added “Warning: Contains graphic violence involving children,” as well as “disturbing images” to the show’s description.
I won’t spoil the opening scene of Season 4, Episode 1 here. As the warning suggests, it involves violence toward children. This is nothing new for Stranger Things, though it is no less disturbing for its familiarity.
While adding the warning is probably a good idea—there’s no harm in giving viewers a heads up—I’m not sure how much steps Hollywood takes will matter in the end. There is nothing about a fictional depiction of violence that could possibly rival the horror of actual real-world violence. There is nothing in Stranger Things that could ever come close to the terror and tragedy of the events at Robb Elementary.
Variety also reports that Lifetime pushed the release of McKenna Grace’s The Bad Seed Returns and that CBS pulled the season finale of FBI. Plans were changed for the red carpet premieres of Physical and The Orville: New Horizons as well. I can understand all of this in terms of pure optics, but it changes nothing in the end. Nobody was going to be harmed by any of these shows or movies to begin with.
In any case, I’ll be reviewing Stranger Things starting tomorrow. Other shows to look forward to include Obi-Wan Kenobi which also lands tomorrow as well as The Boys Season 3 which comes to Amazon Prime Video next week and the aforementioned The Orville: New Horizons which is now a Hulu exclusive.