Stranger Things season three, released on July 4th, broke the Netflix record for most-viewed series in the first four days (40.7 million household accounts watched the new season since its global launch). The streaming giant is also hopeful that fans do more than just sit back and passively watch.
It’s estimated consumers spend $122 billion a year on entertainment-linked merchandise, and Netflix and partner brands want to ride the profitable wave of brightly-colored, questionably-styled-hair, nostalgic fun.
In fact, Netflix shook on deals with over 75 brands, putting the participating companies, fans and itself in a win-win-win situation, as the streaming service hopes to drive more subscriptions and greater fan excitement through the partnerships.
The focus of the brand activations is mostly the trendy, bitchin ’80s nostalgia, so let’s look at the most honorable mentions.
Eggo waffles producer Kellogg’s has had an ongoing partnership with Netflix and this time around, offered the fans a major ‘80s throwback with their retro ads, promoting the show’s character, Eleven’s, favorite food, which is certainly also a favorite treat from many viewers’ childhood. Maybe we’ll all start bickering with our siblings again to “leggo my Eggo.”
Hasbro Gaming invited the show fans to put their cell phones down and gather around a table to play retro-inspired games “Dungeons & Dragons” (which the characters play in the first episode of the sci-fi series) and “Trivial Pursuit Back to The 80’s Edition.” The latter incorporates Stranger Things-themed questions in addition to topics like pop culture, music, technology, trends and more.
Schwinn released another limited edition Stranger Things bike, inspired by the “iron horse” of Lucas Sinclair (Caleb McLaughlin). The retro-bike was sold out almost immediately, we assume to escape the Upside Down.
Those who missed out on the outrageous footwear designs of the 80’s have the chance to go back in time. “Nike x Stranger Things Air Tailwind 79 OG” collection of flashy sneakers looks like it’s been pulled from the ’80s time capsule. The sports brand and Netflix collaborated on a special Stranger Things Three sneaker edition so the fans can be “stranger” head to toe.
The vinyl figurines maker offers to purchase the entire Stranger Things crew, including Jim
To celebrate the new season of the show, Lego released a lego set and a retro-poster, which imitates one of the original Stranger Things season one posters, showing Mike, Dustin and Lucas finding Will’s (all drawn as Lego characters, of course).
Levi’s Fall/Winter 2019 capsule collection pieces are replete with graphics from the Netflix series, including “One summer can change everything” (a central theme for season three) and “Camp Know Where.” Completely casual but so “psych.”
Major League Baseball
MLB is no stranger to Stranger Things, and during Major Leagues, the show made 13 appearances at ballparks across the country, offering Stranger Things MLB gear and merchandise, as well as an immersive experience of visiting the Upside Down–the extra-dimensional spot where nothing is as it seems.
Baskin-Robbins turned its ice-cream shop in Burbank, California into “Scoops Ahoy,” exactly mimicking the shop from Netflix show’s third season. The fans can grab a scoop or two at the store from July 2 to July 14.
Target’s “You ready to party like it’s 1985?” campaign offers to “go retro with [its] totally rad collections” of “Splashtown, USA,” “Grillin’ & Chillin,'”, “Style to the Max” and “Cool at School” merch. And by the way, Target is another location where “Scoops, Ahoy” ice-cream is available for purchase.
H&M launched a global capsule collection with Stranger Things, complete with retro logo T-shirts and swimwear. What can we say, “one summer can change everything.”
Instant before Instagram filmmaker, Polaroid was certainly in luck with the show, as it presented a perfect opportunity for the brand to play on the1980s nostalgia and re-introduce its retro products and a limited-edition instant camera inspired by Stranger Things, with unique filters and frames that feel totally “stranger.”
Shutterstock also didn’t miss out on a chance to remind us of its library of “strange stock,” as a part of the brand’s “It’s Shutterstock” campaign. The video was designed as a preview for Stranger Things season three, and, of course, made 100 percent of Shutterstock assets. See for yourself.
Coca-Cola made a bold move with bringing back a once failed new Coke recipe and is on a mission to sell 500,000 limited-edition cans of “New Coke,” as well as a New Coke Throwback Collection of limited-edition apparel.
Actually, nothing strange about this one. The Upside Down Whopper is well, what it sounds like it is. It’s the original Whopper, stuffed with the same ingredients, served upside down in exclusive packaging.
And finally, one of the latest partnerships between Netflix and Microsoft gave birth to Windows 1.0-inspired app that lets users experience the graphical user interface they first publicly released