Metallica has embraced the “Stranger Things” collaboration – a rarity for the band.

Patricia DeLuca, Senior Managing Editor

August 9, 2022

2 Min Read
Promotional image for "Stranger Things 4."
Promotional image for "Stranger Things 4."Netflix

Gen Z is now listening to thrash metal. During the fourth season of “Stranger Things,” rock band Metallica’s classic track, “Master of Puppets,” was featured in a now-pivotal scene from the series. Since the episode’s airing last month, the single – first released in 1986 – saw a 400% increase in streams and has garnered a new generation of Metallica fans. 

We could chalk this up to The Netflix Effect, as classic brands and artists are getting a new lease of life thanks to the streaming platform. However, the Metallica collaboration is different. The San Francisco-based band isn’t known for jumping on trends. Some may remember how the quartet, which formed in 1981, resisted making music videos for MTV (back when bands needed to make videos) until 1989 with “One” from the album, “… And Justice for All.” While Metallica has licensed its brand for publishing, spirits and apparel lines with Billabong and J. Balvin (most with a tie-in to a charity), it’s rare when the band licenses songs from its catalog.   

Since the resurgence of “Master of Puppets,” Metallica has dueted the song with “Stranger Things” wearing Hellfire Club baseball T-shirts on its TikTok channel and invited actor Joseph Quinn (“Eddie Munson” of “Stranger Things”) to jam with them backstage at Lollapalooza in Chicago, where they played the song as clips from the series flashed in the background. Metallica also released a collaboration with Netflix for a line of “Hellfire Club” T-shirts

Related:Strange Times: What Movie Production Stalls Could Mean for Streaming

So, why did Metallica run with the “Stranger Things” ball? They’re fans of the series. In the TikTok clip with Quinn, vocalist/guitarist James Hetfield says how he and his family bond watching the series. Tye Trujillo, son of Metallica bassist Robert Trullijo, played guitar on the remastered track for the series’ soundtrack. It’s truly a family affair for Metallica, perhaps the most organic collaboration for the band outside of instrument endorsements like Yousician, where you can learn to play songs from the band’s catalog – including “Master of Puppets” – from Hetfield and guitarist Kirk Hammett. 

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Stranger Things

About the Author(s)

Patricia DeLuca

Senior Managing Editor, License Global

Patricia DeLuca currently serves as License Global's Senior Managing Editor.

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