Netflix's Stranger Things season four has so much to unpack from volume one as we await the second volume's release date, July 1st, but there's a moment from the teasers and trailer we have yet to witness…Eddie Munson seriously dominating on his guitar in the Upside Down.
Eddie is a fantastic character, complete with an iconic hairstyle and even more iconic denim/leather jacket complete with a patch showcasing artwork for the 1984 Dio album, The Last in Line. The patch itself was actually donated by the estate of late Dio lead singer Ronnie James Dio, specifically his wife. The character of Eddie is in love with metal music such as Metallica, Dio, Motörhead (patch on the front of his jacket), and Judas Priest as he owns a poster in his room of the art from their album Defenders of the Faith from 1984. According to costume designer Amy Parris, the type of metal that Eddie favors or leans into the most is wizard metal. Dio has long been influenced by and connected to imagery that connects back to fantasy such as Dungeons and Dragons and similar themes of adventures and battles.
When thinking about Stranger Things, a consistent and important part of the series has been the link to fantasy and D&D. Eddie will likely end up back in the world of Vecna based on the importance music now plays in helping those trapped in this villain's clutches comes from favorite songs or melodies. At first, the thought process directed me towards thinking it was a version of Journey's "Separate Ways (Worlds Apart)" from their 1983 album Frontiers but the emphasis on keyboard in the song seems to signify it was used mainly for the trailer for volume one. It could be used as a song to help rescue Nancy from the terror of the bloody pool and the memory of Barb's death because this was a time when the band would be mainstream enough that it would be recognizable to her and others not accustomed to listening to the genre.
Thinking through other bands like Judas Priest with songs like "The Sentinel" and "Defenders of the Faith" or other albums from Dio like The Last in Line, none truly made a lot of sense. Many songs felt like they could be close, like "Egypt (The Chains Are On)" or "Sacred Heart" and I might be surprised and hear one of them instead, but the imagery in the music video and popularity of "Holy Diver" makes Dio a high-level candidate in this theory. Many suggestions are online from TikTok videos about him possibly playing some Iron Maiden or Black Sabbath. While we won't be sure about the song until a clip comes out or we wait for volume two, I have a lot of hope in my theory. Eddie playing a song on the fly like that would be something he knows by heart or plays often on his beloved guitar.
Stranger Things loves to often pay attention to the crumbs and little details in past seasons and there's no exception with this one. Eddie has become a central character in this season, with attention to detail for him going to the lengths of getting artwork from the band itself for his jacket and being offered even some vintage t-shirts as well for the character to use. It feels like a bigger part of his character overall and if it's not at least some song from Dio, I'll be highly surprised since I'm hoping to hear those iconic cords from "Holy Diver" on July 1st.