Brett Gelman, who first entered our hearts lampooning Billy Crystal on Comedy Bang Bang, is now one of the most in-demand character actors in the business. In the midst of his Fleabag role scoring him awards acclaim, the actor’s popped up on HBO’s Camping, Netflix’s Love, and the latest season of Mr. Mercedes. Now, Deadline reports that Netflix has promoted his Stranger Things character, reclusive conspiracy journalist Murray Bauman, to a series regular.
This doesn’t come as much of a surprise, as Gelman’s kooky renegade dovetails perfectly with the show’s continued delving into the supernatural consequences of governmental and scientific malfeasance. He also played a much larger role than expected in the show’s third season, especially considering his season 2 introduction was a relatively minor subplot. Furthermore, the show teased his inflated role with a season 3 easter egg: a phone number leading to an answering machine from Murray.
“If this is Joyce—Joyce, thank you for calling, I’ve been trying to reach you,” he says in the message. “I have an update. It’s about—well, it’s about—it’s probably best if we speak in person. It’s not good or bad but it’s something.”
The announcement follows a season 4 teaser that showed us David Harbour’s Hopper alive and bald in the wintry depths of Russia. It also arrives with a cute behind-the-scenes video showing the cast gathering for a reading of the show’s fourth season.
There’s not much to it, but it’s nice to see the gang together, even if serves as yet another reminder of the crushing weight of time. It also gives us a chance to again reflect on the title of the fourth season’s first episode, “The Hellfire Club,” which we unpacked here.
Stranger Things 4 is slated to drop sometime this year.