Warning: Spoilers for season 1 of "Stranger Things" below. Read at your own risk.
Now that Netflix has officially renewed "Stranger Things," it's the perfect time to speculate about the next season.
Show writers and creators Matt and Ross Duffer will return to handle nine new episodes that will debut in 2017. They've already hinted at things to come in a season 2 teaser video that lists the titles of the upcoming episodes: "Madmax," "The Boy Who Came Back to Life," "The Pumpkin Patch," "The Palace," "The Storm," "The Pollywog," "The Secret Cabin," "The Brain," and "The Lost Brother." The story will take place in the fall of 1984, but who or what will be the focus of the new adventure has yet to be revealed.
Here's what we think could be in store for our favorite characters.
Barb's death will matter.
Nancy Wheeler's best friend Barb (Shannon Purser) met a gruesome death after the monster nicknamed Demogorgon dragged her from a lame high school party to the Upside Down world. Will her untimely demise make a difference in the next season?
"Barb will not be forgotten," co-creator Matt Duffer said in an interview earlier this month. "We'll make sure there's some justice for Barb. People get very frustrated, understandably, that the town doesn't seem to be really dealing with Barb."
Duffer added that season 1 takes place over the course of just six or seven days. "It's a really short period of time," he said. "So part of what we want to do with hypothetical season 2 is to explore the repercussions of everything that happened."
Creepy Dr. Brenner is alive.
The last time we saw Dr. Brenner (Matthew Modine), the man responsible for Eleven's psychic training, he was being attacked by the Demogorgon in the climatic final episode of season 1. But we didn't actually see him die.
"I would say that if we were going to kill Brenner as an audience member watching the show, if that was his death, that would be very unsatisfying to me -- when the monster jumps on him and we cut away," co-creator Matt Duffer said in an interview. "He would deserve much more than that as an ending. So yes, there's a possibility of seeing him again."
Eleven is a new kind of being.
Eleven (Millie Bobby Brown) created a gateway between the real world and the Upside Down by making contact with the Demogorgon while in a psychic trance. At the end of season 1, she sacrificed herself to kill the Demogorgon and save her friends. But we're left wondering. Is she dead, transported to the Upside Down or maybe something else entirely?
After all, why did Police Chief Jim Hopper (David Harbour) leave food, including Eleven's favorite brand of frozen waffles, in a box in the woods? What if Eleven is alive and well living in "the secret cabin," or perhaps as some sort of Eleven-Demogorgon hybrid creature?
Eleven's dad is the Demogorgon.
It's never fully explained who Eleven's real father might be. Her mother got pregnant during Dr. Brenner's MK Ultra experiments, but was she impregnated during a psychic trip to the Upside Down? Was Eleven's father even human?
Sure, Eleven calls Dr. Brenner "Poppa," but she could just be imprinting on the only father figure she's ever known. Either way, this could lead to an interesting new character for season 2.
Nancy, the Byers family and Chief Hopper are all infected.
Remember when Dr. Brenner warned Chief Hopper not to take off his Hazmat suit while searching for Will Byers (Noah Schnapp) in the Upside Down? Both Hopper and Will's mom Joyce (Winona Ryder) took off their protective suits to revive an almost dead Will. Nancy Wheeler (Natalia Dyer) wasn't wearing any protective gear during her brief visit to the Upside Down. Jonathan Byers (Charlie Heaton) never made it to the other realm, but he sure got a lot of Demogorgon drool in his mouth while fighting off the monster in his living room.
In the last episode, we see Will cough up a weird pollywog creature, the same kind that used him as a human host in the Upside Down. That makes us wonder if everyone who visited the Upside Down is now infested with the same squirmy mini-Demogorgon pollywogs. Also, if they do have pollywogs inside them, does this mean they can travel to and from the Upside Down at will?
Chief Hopper is part of the secret government agency.
Hopper clearly made a deal with Dr. Brenner for access to the Upside Down after he and Joyce were caught breaking into the mysterious US Department of Energy facility. What did the deal include besides giving up Eleven's location?
In the final episode, Hopper catches a ride in the same car he spotted earlier in the season as he uncovered the truth of Will's fake corpse. We have to wonder if Hopper has gone to the dark side.
Who and where are the other psychic kids?
If Eleven got her name from the 011 tattoo on her wrist, where are all the kids tattooed 001 through 010? Does this mean these kids are hidden away in other facilities? Did they have trouble adjusting to their psychic abilities? Do they all have the same father? Here's hoping we get more information about Dr. Brenner's paranormal research and that Eleven isn't alone.