Will Byers may be at the heart of Netflix's hit story, but that's just one more reason Stranger Things season 5 could kill him.
While it might break viewers' hearts, from the clues the series has left so far, Stranger Things season 5 will likely kill off Will Byers. Stranger Things season 5 has a lot going for it. When viewers last saw the Stranger Things hero, they were preparing for their second duel against Vecna, as the villain was narrowly defeated by Eleven (and in the process) in the season 4 finale.
Season 5 now has a lot of unanswered questions to explain, from whether or not Stranger Things has a plan for Argyll, to whether or not Steve Harington will survive another showdown in The Upside Down. However, the fate of these supporting characters pales in comparison to the forgotten heroes of Stranger Things. Will Byers has been at the center of Stranger Things since the show's pilot run. His kidnapping was at the heart of season 1's story, his possession was at the heart of Stranger Things season 2, and season 4 finally gave Will some screen time and fleshed out his tormented character. Unfortunately, this may Because Stranger Things season 5 will kill Will.
Will Is Still Connected To Vecna
While the army has brought some sadness to Eleven, the biggest villain in Stranger Things season 4 is Vecna, the evil overlord of the Upside-Down. Vecna's backstory reveals that he's the architect of the Upside-Down, the never-before-seen puppeteer who has been designing the events of Stranger Things to ensure that he will one day fight again with Ten after losing the psychological battle to her all those years ago. A confrontation. However, it's dire news for a Stranger Things supporting star with strong ties to the Upside-Down and its inhabitants. Since Stranger Things season 1, Will has been associated with the Upside Down, and therefore Vecner.
While it wasn't clear until season 4 that Will's connection to the Upside-Down meant he was connected to Vecna, there were clues to this fact in earlier seasons. In Stranger Things season 2, Will is actually possessed by the inhabitants of the Upside Down, and in season 3, he says he can sense the presence of mind flayers. Will's connection to Vecna always meant he'd be a big part of defeating the villain in Stranger Things' final season, But his psychic connection to the unstoppable killer could mean Will Byers won't be immune to seeing Vecna beaten forever.
Will's Secret Love For Mike
If there's one character trait that marks Will's dying, it's his unrequited love for his casual best friend Mike. While "Stranger Things" season 5 should try to avoid the infamous "bury your gay" tropes, the fact that Will is involved in a love triangle with the show's leading men and women is not good for his health. Originally, Steve died in Stranger Things season 1 to help the show foster Nancy and Jonathan's romance, and while that supporting character would live to another day, there are at least indications that Nancy may eventually meet to one (or both) of the suitor love stories.
Instead, in Stranger Things season 4, Mike made it clear more than ever that he was ignorant of Will's feelings for him. At the same time, Mike's unwavering loyalty to Eleven makes Will's unreciprocated affection doubly clear, which unfortunately makes his character's kill more likely. After all, the love interest of Joyce's mother Bob was brutally murdered in Stranger Things Season 2 paved the way for Hopper and Joyce's awkward Season 3 romance, so it's already pretty clear that Stranger Things will even kill off a much-loved side character in favor of a character pairing.
Will Is The Most Innocent Stranger Things Kid
Since Eleven was born in Stranger Things' Hawkins Lab, the poor kid saw a lot of blood and brutality at an appalling age. However, she wasn't the only Stranger Things kid who lost her innocence early in the show's run. Max is a runaway teenage girl who is bullied by her stepbrother Billy, who she also witnessed abused by his father. Mike, Dustin, and Lucas were violently bullied by sociopath Troy in Stranger Things season 1, and while Will did spend weeks in the Upside Down, he still managed to keep what they had lost over the years childlike innocence.
Stranger Things Began With Will's “Death"
The earliest episodes of Stranger Things revolved around Will's disappearance, which was discovered midway through season 1 when his body was discovered in a devastating twist. This shocking revelation was quickly undone when the body was revealed to be fake (leading to Stranger Things fan theories about the return of the dead character, regardless how improbable it is). While this plot proved to be misleading, it could also set the stage for how the entire series ends. In a neat twist, Stranger Things season 5 could end with Will's actual death, just as season 1 began with his apparent death.
Stranger Things 5 Focuses Heavily On Will
Perhaps the biggest clue to Will's fate lies in the Duffer brothers' July 2022 comments to Stranger Things season 5. After the release of Season 4 Part 2, Matt Duffer admitted that "Will is going to be a big player, focused, really all I can say about Season 5, in his journey" and added Season 5 focuses on his coming of age. Like many of the threads above, this could be seen as evidence that Will's battle with Wickner in season 5 will force him to make the ultimate sacrifice for his friend.
Why This Stranger Things Season 5 Theory Could Be Wrong
While there are many reasons to think Will will be exiting Stranger Things season 5, viewers needn't worry. 'Stranger Things' has gotten better at dealing with queer characters since Robin appeared in season 3 And the "bury your gay" tropes can be avoided by keeping Will alive, and his innocence could be the key to defeating Vecna. In the Stranger Things season 4 finale, Will the Wise seemed to be the only one who realized that giving up was exactly what Weckner wanted Hawkins' crew to do, so it was possible the character would not only survive, but even save His friends and his hometown in the final season.