upside down
May 21, 2019

The return of New Coke? Stranger things have happened.

Coca-Cola is bringing back the infamous and widely-hated drink for a limited time as part of a partnership with the Netflix series Stranger Things, The Wall Street Journal reports.

Beginning this Thursday, cans of New Coke will be available in a Stranger Things package sold on the Coca-Cola website. Stranger Things' upcoming third season is set during 1985, the year when Coke rolled out its unpopular new formula that was discontinued after just 79 days. New Coke will evidently appear in several episodes of Stranger Things, and Coca-Cola says it invited Netflix to visit its archives "to study New Coke packaging, memorabilia, advertising."

About 500,000 cans of New Coke will be made available, Variety reports, after a six-month process that involved digging up the old formula and faithfully recreating the can design. Matt and Ross Duffer, the creators of the show, evidently brought up the idea of a New Coke return as a joke during a meeting with Netflix — but everyone else legitimately thought it was a good idea.

Barry Smyth, Netflix’s head of partnership marketing, told The New York Times that at a 2017 meeting, "We asked the question, ‘What would really blow it out of the water for this campaign?’ They jokingly said, 'Bring back New Coke.' They thought it was a joke. We took it as a brief." Netflix approached Coke with the idea.

Beyond this Thursday, Stranger Things-themed vending machines will give out free cans of New Coke in some select cities, beginning in New York on May 23. Stranger Things's third season hits Netflix on July 4. Brendan Morrow

March 20, 2019

The world of Hawkins, Indiana is about to turn upside down — again.

Netflix on Wednesday debuted the first trailer for the third season of Stranger Things, which teases a summer theme, trouble for one particular character, and a downright horrifying new creature.

After an extended opening sequence in which the gang uses Eleven's powers to play a prank on Dustin, we see footage of the kids living it up over the summer after two seasons set during the fall. But they're getting older, as the trailer makes abundantly clear when Mike defensively declares, "we're not kids anymore." It seems something will threaten to tear the group apart during the season, with Will looking wistfully at a photo of a more innocent time — that time being season 2.

The trailer also teases the introduction of a new mall in Hawkins, which promises to be a central location, as well as a new character in Mayor Kline, played by Cary Elwes. But what's the season's central conflict? Well, the trailer features a brief shot of Billy Hargrove in the shower with some sort of infection on his arm, and it concludes with Jonathan being confronted by a horrifying new creature, which looks like the Demogorgon mixed with something out of The Thing. Could that infection have actually transformed Billy into this monster? Or might Billy become possessed much like Will was last season?

We'll find out when the third season of Stranger Things premieres on July 4. Watch the trailer below. Brendan Morrow

February 7, 2018

Do you remember the good "old days?" Well, President Trump sure does, and things aren't like they used to be! On Wednesday, he returned to one of his favorite topics — the stock market — after having been oddly silent on the subject throughout the recent tumult:

The Dow Jones Industrial Average dropped 666 points Friday, fueled in part by a good (great) January jobs report, which "sparked … inflation fears and worries that interest rates could rise faster than expected," USA Today writes. On Monday, the Dow dropped nearly 1,200 points in the largest single-day point plunge in history. By Tuesday's closing, it had bounced back up over 550 points — no thanks to Trump's scolding about its "big mistake." Jeva Lange

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