Following the trend of AMC’s aftershows on Breaking Bad, The Walking Dead and Better Call Saul, Netflix is going into that with Stranger Things. Titled Beyond Stranger Things, the show will recap and explore what all goes on in season two of the hit show with cast and crew members.
On paper, this makes sense. People can’t get enough Stranger Things and it’s a show that is complex and is worth a recap on what happened. It’s a show that creates dialogue and intrigue at what everyone thinks will happen.
My issue is how exactly is this going to work in a binge watching format. On AMC, when a show has an episode every week, it’s tailored to an aftershow because you can do one after every episode.
With Netflix and Stranger Things, people have different ways of binge watching shows. Some go one episode at a time, some will do a couple episodes and at some point keep going and many will take the entire first day and watch the entire new season.
First, Netflix recommends that people watch the entire season of Stranger Things before watching Beyond Stranger Things because of spoilers in season two. With Beyond Stranger Things, it will automatically play after the final episode of season two. And no matter how much Netflix promotes and warns to not watch Beyond Stranger Things until after the season, not everyone is going to follow that and will be upset at being spoiled.
It’s also never made clear exactly what the format is for Beyond Stranger Things. Is it one long episode that recaps the entire season or is there one for each of the nine episodes? Judging by the guest list for Beyond Stranger Things, it would indicate they are doing one for each episode.
“The series features Stranger Things creators Matt and Ross Duffer, executive producer Shawn Levy, and the cast — Sean Astin, Linnea Berthelsen, Millie Bobby Brown, Natalia Dyer, Brett Gelman, David Harbour, Randy Havens (the teacher!), Charlie Heaton, Joe Keery, Gaten Matarazzo, Caleb McLaughlin, Dacre Montgomery, Paul Reiser, Noah Schnapp, Sadie Sink, and Finn Wolfhard, along with special guests!”
That’s a stacked group and it would be hard to believe that there would be a one hour recap to cover the entire season with all those people. So I’m assuming that there will be an episode of Beyond Stranger Things per episode of Stranger Things. That means you watch the season and then after you’re finished, you’re supposed to go back to the first episode and recap that?
I appreciate Netflix for experimenting and trying new things, because we may not have had Stranger Things, but this seems like it won’t work. An aftershow is a difficult sell in this format. I’ll give it a chance but I’m definitely more looking forward to the show than the aftershow.