Stranger Things season 4 fan theories: Who is going to die? What is Will painting? The 11 best predictions for the final episodes

Who will survive the battle with Vecna in Stranger Things season 4 volume 2? We explore the wildest and most heartbreaking fan theories about what might happen in the final 2 episodes.

By Alex Fletcher Published: 30 June 2022 - 10.42am

Splitting Stranger Things season 4 into two volumes hasn’t been good for our anxiety levels – Steve! Nancy! El! The cliffhanger ending to volume 1 has left us counting down the days until July 1 and the release of the final two episodes.

However, the break between the two volumes has encouraged fans to get their detective hats on and start looking for clues about the fate of Hawkins and our Dungeons and Dragons-loving heroes.

Twitter, Reddit and TikTok is filled with Easter Egg-spotting, wild fan theories and some heartbreaking predictions about what may lay ahead.

Here is a roundup of the best and most outlandish Stranger Things fan theories…

1. Eight will return

Linnea Berthelsen as Eight/008 in Stranger Things Season 2 Netflix

Season 4 Volume 1 took us deep into the origins of Hawkins Labs and Dr Brenner’s experiments. We learned the story of 001/Henry Creel and how Eleven fought him and, after defeating him, opened a gate to the Upside Down and turned him into Vecna.

The one person missing from the Hawkins Lab story was 008/Kali Prasad. Eleven and Kali teamed up in season 2, but 008 wasn’t seen in any of the flashback sequences in season 4.

Kali escaped Hawkins Lab and dedicated her life to fighting injustices for all who suffered at the hands of Dr Brenner’s team.

A lot of fans have predicted that Linnea Berthelsen will return to Stranger Things as Kali in either season 4 or season 5 to help Eleven, which might help even the odds slightly in any future showdowns with Vecna.

2. Eddie's guitar will save the world

Joseph Quinn as Eddue Munson in Stranger Things season 4 Netflix

The power of music was a significant theme running through season 4 as the Hawkins gang discovered that it was the best tool for saving people from Vecna’s clutches.

Kate Bush’s Running Up That Hill was enough to save Max’s life (and send the pop icon racing back up the charts), but with Nancy under Vecna’s spell at the end of volume 1, fans believe it might be guitar-slaying Hellfire Club leader Eddie who comes to the rescue.

The theory is that the footage in the trailer of Eddie wielding his guitar and smashing out a solo could be part of a rescue mission. Perhaps his axe skills are powerful enough to protect the gang as they take down Vecna and rescue Nancy?

3. Someone is going to die before season 5

Joseph Quinn as Eddue Munson in Stranger Things season 4 Netflix

Stranger Things fans are bracing themselves for heartache in Volume 2. Most fan theories believe that one of the lead cast won’t make it out of the final two episodes in season 4.

Nancy, Steve (those Demo-Bats bites have us concerned), Lucas, Will and Max appear to be the main contenders. However, newcomer Eddie, probably has the shortest odds of making it through episode 8 and 9.

The show has a habit of killing off popular side characters in every series – Barb! Bob! Alexei! – and Eddie’s chat with Steve about him not being heroic felt like some worrying foreshadowing of a moment when the long-haired rocker might save the day.

Stranger Things season 4: Meet the new cast

In an interview with Variety, co-creator Matt Duffer revealed that fans shouldn't be conerned about Steve's Demo-bat bites, admitting that was included because he has an obessession with the creatures at the moment.

"I wouldn’t worry about the bat thing," he said.

"If he’s going to die, it’s not going to be from the bat thing."

 

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4. Will was taken by Vecna, not the Demogorgon, in season 1

Dedicated fans have gone back to season one after watching season 4 and there is a very strong argument to suggest that the show’s creators, the Duffers, planned Vecna right from the start.

A fan who rewatched season one has pointed out that Will’s disappearance fits with Vecna’s usual patterns – and there is even a clock chiming when Will falls off his bike in the opening episode.

There are lots of theories around the connections between Will and Vecna and the parallels between young Henry Creel and Will. This might explain why the date of Will’s disappearance is so significant to the Upside Down and could also be worrying news for the Byers family…

5. The school counsellor was working for Vecna

Regina Ting Chen as Ms Kelly in Stranger Things season 4 Netflix

Ms Kelly was a connecting factor between the many victims of Vecna, and a set of youngsters suffering from trauma and anxiety would constitute the perfect hunting ground for the Freddie Krueger-esque monster.

But could Ms Kelly be more than just a loose connection and be working for Vecna?

Eagle-eyed fans spotted a clock necklace she wears, which is Vecna’s calling card for victims. And as she gets information about pupils' fears and worries, it would make sense if Vecna was using her to feed on Hawkins’ young population.

6.  Erica will kill Vecna

Priah Ferguson as Erica Sinclair, Gaten Matarazzo as Dustin Henderson and Caleb McLaughlin as Lucas Sinclair Netflix

In the Hellfire Club's game of Dungeons and Dragons at the start of season 4, it was Erica and Dustin who conquered Vecna. We’ve seen Dustin play a crucial role in saving Max and strategising how to take on this year’s villain, but some fans believe it will be Erica who is the hero and resolves how to defeat the villain. Her confidence and bravado would be a good match for a villain who preys on insecurities and anxiety.

7.  Robin knows the song to save Nancy

In the scene where Robin borrows one of Nancy’s old outfits, Maya Hawke’s character poked around Nancy’s belongings. It felt like a throwaway comedic moment between the odd couple, but the scene could have greater significance in battle with Vecna.

Natalia Dyer as Nancy Wheeler and Maya Hawke as Robin in Stranger Things season 4 Netflix

Fans believe it will be Robin who knows the song that will help the gang rescue Nancy from the villain’s clutches, because she was looking through all the cassettes in her bedroom.

8. What is Will painting?

The mysterious unseen painting which Will has secretly been working on looks likely to be a significant plot point in the final two episodes of season 4.

In the brief glimpses of his paintwork, fans have spotted similarities in his drawing to the ones that Max sketched after being captured by Vecna.

One theory is that Vecna captured Will back in season one and still has a connection with the young Byers boy – which might explain the significance of the date he disappeared on the Upside Down.

Will the painting reveal secrets that will help the gang conquer Vecna? Or does the connection between Will and Vecna have potentially fatal consequences?

9.  Eddie is 010

This theory is a bit of a stretch considering his behaviour and actions so far in season 4, but some fans believe that D&D lover Eddie could have been one of the Hawkins Lab experiments.

A comment he made about previously having a buzzcut and the fact he wears a watch, which might cover his number tattoo, are the only clues to back up this argument.

10. Eleven, I am your father

Jamie Campbell Bower with Millie Bobby Brown in Stranger Things Season 4 Netflix

The first episode in Volume 2 is titled ‘Papa’. We expect this means we might finally get definitive answers on Eleven’s parents.

We know who El’s mother was, but the details about how Eleven got her powers, the identity of her father and origins are still murky and unclear.

One reddit theory picking up steam is the idea that One might have been used by Brenner to not only give the other subjects powers, but to create them. Which could make Henry Creel/Vecna, Eleven’s father…

It might explain why he was trying to tempt Eleven to join him and work in bringing down humankind in season 4.

11. Alpha and Omega

In an interview with The Hollywood Reporter, Vecna actor Jamie Campbell Bower, revealed a clue that he spotted that might hint at how Stranger Things is heading towards a light v dark showdown in season 5.

"I got so deep that the fact that Millie is 011 and I’m 001; in Greek, one and 11 are Alpha and Omega, which is light and dark. It’s everything, " said Bower.

"I remember going up to Matt and Ross and being like, ‘I’ve just discovered that there’s Alpha and Omega. What does it mean? Is this purposeful, or is this just happenstance?’ I won’t tell you their answer!"

Stranger Things season 4 volume 2 is released on Friday, 1 July.

Watch Stranger Things season 4 volume 1 now on Netflix.