The Margin: Hopper is alive! Netflix drops ‘Stranger Things’ season four trailer

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“Stranger Things” just turned Valentine’s Day upside down.

Netflix’s NFLX, +0.49%  sci-fi hit appeared to kill off fan-favorite character Jim Hopper last season. The small-town sheriff (played by David Harbor) turned surrogate father for Eleven (Millie Bobbi Brown), the young girl with the paranormal powers at the heart of the series, appeared to sacrifice himself to save Joyce (Winona Ryder), the kids, and the entire planet, frankly, from a machine that the Russians had built to open a door between our world and the Upside Down, a monster-filled dimension.

But wait -— a scene at the end of the last season revealed that the Russians were holding an unnamed American hostage. And Netflix’s new teaser posted to Twitter TWTR, -0.31%   on Friday morning revealed the prisoner to be the indomitable Sheriff Hopper.

The camera pans over a Russian prison camp in the snow, before pulling in close to one man working on a railroad — it’s a bald and gaunt, but still determined-looking Hopper.

Watch it here:

“Stranger Things” fans lost their minds, with hashtags and phrases including “Hopper Is Alive,” #StrangerThings4 and #SheriffHopper trending after Netflix tweeted the 50-second teaser entitled “From Russia with love.” It had been viewed almost 5 million times and drawn almost 13,000 comments by late Friday morning.

Netflix hasn’t announced a release date for the new season yet.

Related: ‘Stranger Things’ fans are flocking to buy this item

“Stranger Things” and its endearing mix of 1980s nostalgia, suspense and likable child-turned-teen actors has become one of the streaming service’s biggest hits. Netflix reported that 40.7 million household accounts had watched at least part of Season 3 within the first four days of its July 4, 2019 launch — which was “more than any other film or series” in its catalog, the company said, though it generally does not disclose precise viewing numbers.

Watch: How investors can tell which company could win the streaming wars

So Netflix inked a new multiyear film and series deal with “Stranger Things” creators and showrunners the Duffer Brothers last fall for a reported nine figures, according to the Hollywood Reporter.

Read more: Netflix renews ‘Stranger Things’ and hands its showrunners a reported nine-figure contract

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