[Ed. note: As you might’ve guessed or hoped for, this post goes into detail about the end of season 4 of Stranger Things.]
After its release stranger things 4 Part 2 was awesome, and not just because of the running time. In the final set of episodes, the entire cast of characters finally met Hawkins and defeated Vecna - sort of.
Though they survived the battle, war still looms in a very real way as Vecna’s efforts to merge the reversed and normal worlds pose a greater threat than ever now that four rifts between worlds are threatening the city that they are love, deface. There’s also the inverted particle monster/shadow that Joyce and Hopper saw in Russia.
All of this sets up a pretty big final season for the streaming juggernaut in which I’m sure the Upside Down monsters will be worse than ever. Of course, knowing that the end is so near, each remaining question feels a little more weighty than it otherwise would. While stranger things known for bloating some episode lengths, there’s still a (relatively) limited window of opportunity to complete everyone in the cast’s travels. And that’s all before we dive into solving her latest Upside Down problem.
What happened to Vecna?
Although the ground attack by Nancy, Robin, and Steve successfully incapacitated Vecna, they both shot him out of a window and burned it extensively – by the time they got outside it was gone, leaving only a soot stain on the upturned floor.
Does that mean Vecna is really dead? No, at least not according to Will. His inverted Spidey senses told him that One/Vecna/Henry is still very much alive. “Now that I’m here, at Hawkins, I can feel it. And it hurts, but it’s still alive,” Will said to Mike. “It’s weird knowing now who it was all along. But I can still remember what he thinks and how he thinks. And he won’t stop. je. Not before he’s taken everything and everyone. We have to kill him.”
What does this mean for Hawkins?
A few days after Vecna’s attack, many Hawkins residents are already moving away from the “earthquake” that caused massive cracks in the town. The Upside Down seems to be invading our world as vines weave their way through the cracks and buildings, thunderstorms gather, Upside Down dust begins to rain, and the infected soil kills the plants around the city.
Will’s Upside Down Spidey sense lets him know the storm clouds are gathering. And soon everyone in the city is looking up, trying to understand what is happening now. While our cast of main characters certainly knows better than regular townsfolk what’s in the air and beneath their feet, they don’t seem any better placed to stop it – yet. As Eleven looks back at the town in the final moments of Episode 9, it’s clear that the Upside Down is starting to take over Hawkins. As Vecna told Eleven, “This is just the beginning. The beginning of the end. You’ve already lost.”
is maxi dead
No, but Eleven can’t find them, even in her own headspace. Max lasted as long as she could, but Eleven’s victory in the Psychic Duel and Steve, Nancy, and Robin’s victory in the Upside Down came too late. He had already started killing Max, hanging her in the air, and systematically breaking her bones. When Vecna was finished, Max fell and awoke from the trance, but told Lucas that she couldn’t hear or feel anything. She died shortly thereafter.
El refused to accept this and used her powers to bring Max back to life – up to a point. We last see Max in the hospital where she is in a coma and the doctors are unsure if she will wake up again. When El touches her hand to merge with her, she finds Max’s brain space completely empty. Where Max’s spirit went – and whether it can return to her body – is one of the biggest questions of the final season. Although I have a hard time believing that this is the last time we see Max stranger things.
Will Hopper and El still have matching haircuts in Stranger Things 5?
Who knows. Maybe during this time they will really push it and let it grow together. You could even complete the look with matching father daughter outfits.
OK seriously, what’s up with Will?
Although Will was finally able to show Mike his art and persuade him, it almost immediately caused Will to roar sadly himself as he looked out the window. Describing the thought process behind his painting, Will spoke about how hard it is to be different from other people and was quite emotional about it.
Although Mike didn’t know what Will was going through all season, Jonathan (fresh off the grass) finally chimed in. While preparing Eleven’s sensory deprivation tank/pizza freezer, Jonathan Will said he was saddened by how far apart they had come. “I don’t want you to forget I’m here. I will always be here no matter what because you are my brother and I love you,” Jonathan said. “There’s nothing in this world – absolutely nothing – that could ever change that.”
Unfortunately, after a hug, Will went back to supporting roles and we didn’t get a resolution to what was going on with him throughout the season. In Part 1, as he melancholically comforted Mike, he again spoke about El in a way that felt like he was speaking about fears he has himself. “Sometimes it’s just scary to open up and say how you feel,” he told Mike in a charged moment on episode 5. “What if the people you care about the most don’t like the truth ?
While he could I was just so out of shape with the issues in Mike and El’s relationship, is it possible that something is still going to happen with him and his own coming of age story? Some believe it’s developing into a story about Will coming out to his friends and family. But off stranger things 4it’s unclear.
Will Nancy and Steve get back together?
Just when you thought stranger things done with a love triangle, let’s go back to studying amorous trigonometry. After spending the entire season trying to find the perfect girl, Steve finally made it clear to Nancy that she was the one in his fantasies of raising six Harringtons and traveling across the country. Hearing this, Nancy seemed intrigued, or at least flattered.
She was certainly keen to defend how much Steve had “grown up” to Jonathan, her boyfriend from whom she was estranged (physically and emotionally). stranger things 4. Although they eventually ended up back together at Hawkins, the season ended with the two dancing around awkwardly when together they still make sense. He apologized to Nancy for being distant, but also still lied about his plans to hopefully attend the same college as her. And it’s clear that this season’s events have caused Nancy to reconsider her feelings towards Steve. All things considered, there doesn’t seem to be clear skies for Jonathan and Nancy, Vecna or not.
Where will the Russians calculate?
It was all season before the kids learned that Joyce, Murray, and Hopper were in the Soviet Union, not to mention aiding the fight against Vecna’s forces by attacking monsters linked to the Hive Mind. Ultimately, the Hopper rescue mission to Russia was crucial, but it often felt pretty helpful for the rest of the season.
Still, important discoveries have been made: the Soviets continue to contact the Upside Down and appear to have made better progress than Brenner in figuring out exactly what their business is and how to tame their monsters. Joyce and Hopper stumbled upon a (now-vanished) lab containing Demodogs, other Upside Down monsters, and a “particle monster” resembling the primitive form of the Mind Flayer.
Is the American military still looking for Eleven?
Although they were neutered as a plot element when Eleven crashed their helicopter in the Nevada desert, they were (for a time) very concerned about how Eleven would handle their powers. Now that she’s come to herself and Hawkins, Indiana has seemingly turned into a giant gateway, you’d think the military would have a bone to pick – and/or an apology for not helping them prevent it! What better time to fix fences and work together than the end of the world?
Will season 5 have a time warp?
Although the last moments of stranger things 4 seem about to go right back into battle, it’s likely that there will be a time warp. For starters, Mike said El felt like she wasn’t ready to fight Vecna again and so she might need to train more with Yoda to access the true depth of her powers. Also, Vecna is still recovering, and if Max is to get in on the action, she’ll need to heal her body in addition to helping Eleven find her missing spirit.
The Duffer brothers have said in interviews that a time warp is likely, in part because they have to offset the fact that the cast continues to grow. “I’m sure we’re going to time warp,” Ross Duffer said TV Line in June 2022, recalling the fact that the young stars are aging quickly. “Ideally we would have shot [seasons 4 and 5] Back to back, but there just wasn’t a practical way to do it. So those are all discussions that we will have with our writers as we open the space.”
True, it is difficult to imagine that Hawkins’ foundation can withstand to With so much time passing between seasons, surely El would have more time to train and Max time to recover.
No seriously – will we ever get “Running Up That Hill” out of our heads?
Now there’s a heavy synth remix in the mix? hoo boy To the resurgence of Kate Bush!