The season two trailer debut for Stranger Things stole the show at San Diego Comic-Con this year, but the original version that almost aired was missing one key component. Even with all of the fantastic panels, first-looks, teasers, and announcements that were released for other beloved and upcoming projects in TV and film, this debut stands on its own. The trailer in itself was mind-blowingly perfect, and a certain song featured in the footage set it over the edge - Michael Jackson's "Thriller" and the iconic voice of Vincent Price.
"Darkness falls across the land, the midnight hour is close at hand, creatures crawl in search of blood, to terrorize y'all's neighborhood"
Just the first few lines of Vincent Price's narration are an outstanding choice for the show's narrative along with the footage that was debuted. "Thriller" continues to set the tone for the theme of the season as we are shown the setting as Halloween in the early 1980s. You might think the song was chosen before the footage was added in considering how well it matches, but that was certainly not the case.
Stranger Things series producer Shawn Levy revealed to io9 that gaining the rights to use "Thriller" was seemingly impossible and pulling it off came down to the wire:
“It was the hardest thing I’ve ever had to pull off as a producer. It’s very, very hard, for reasons I won’t go into. We were rejected repeatedly — for months — and a month ago, it was over. And we had another trailer that was being shipped to San Diego [Comic-Con], and it did not have that song. And the [Duffer] Brothers and I would watch it, and it just really ate away at us, ’cause we knew it was a good trailer, but with "Thriller" it's next level. And, so, I basically decided to be a massive pain in the a**, and I went back into bull-headed producer mode. And I figured out a way to work out a deal to license "Thriller". So that was a really happy day — the day we pulled off that licensing arrangement.”
It is pretty difficult to imagine the trailer nailing the intensity level without the inclusion of "Thriller" but somewhere out there a trailer was created with a totally different song that made its way to #SDCC2017. Due to Levy's persistence and the Duffer Brothers' knack for what works on-screen, they won over the rights to the 1983 classic hit.
Despite the overload of new information fans gathered from the trailer, many questions remain for the members of Hawkins, especially that of Will Byers and his connection to the Upside Down, or how that link might threaten his friends and family. With the season two premiere on the horizon, expect #Netflix to unveil more clever marketing campaigns and hopefully more footage featuring killer songs.
Stranger Things season 2 hits Netflix on October 27, 2017.
What do you think about the inclusion of "Thriller" in the season 2 trailer? Tell us in the comments below!