From the start, Netflix’s Stranger Things has redefined the sci-fi horror genre while borrowing from ’80s classics like The Goonies. It is about redemption, self-discovery and the absolute struggle for good against evil. Along the way, we had deaths. So many deaths. Some got stuck, like in Billy, and some just seemed like the end. Monsters, dastardly goons, innocent bystanders, and Joyce’s boyfriend were all in full swing. July 1, 2022 is almost upon us, and we all have to wonder who will make it out alive and run forever on that hill in the desperate hope of making a deal with God. After the release of the epic Stranger Things Season 4 Part 2, it became clear that we better have some tissues handy because not everyone is coming back to Hawkins.
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Noah Schnapp (Will Beyers) has warned everyone to expect deaths. It’s plural, friends. By breaking down the trailer, following the narrative structures of previous seasons, and sifting through what we already know, we can place odds on who will make it out alive and who we have to say goodbye to.
1000 to 1 odds of survival
Robin, Will and Steve are definitely on the chopping block. At least one of these three will die. If I had to bet, my money would be on Steve. The trailer practically seals the fate of at least one of these three. The Duffer Brothers love a good redemptive character arc, and Steve, who wasn’t even supposed to be on the show since Stranger Things season 1, had one of the best.
Not only is he a loyal friend to this ragtag bunch, but he’s brave under fire, tough, smart, and funny as hell. His death would have the most impact on the band and the public. He has a few wounds from the Upside Down and has also inhaled much of the atmosphere there. I desperately hope I’m wrong, but I think Steve is going to die. He lived on borrowed time, after all.
I don’t feel Robin’s death as much because she has to live to mourn Steve. Although she raises the alarm that this battle might be different from the previous one, she is relatively safe. On the other hand, Will has built something, and I think he’s going to come out with the band and give his life to save Mike. It will look something like, “You saved me once. Now it’s my turn.”
Mike should also watch his back as he is El’s boyfriend, the best friend of the whole group and probably a romantic interest for Will. His death would have a lasting impact on everyone and could be the reason El gets his powers back.
The season’s sleeper pick, Eddie Munson, will be the unexpected savior as he takes on the forces of darkness. A sky darkened with flashes of red in a scene from the Stranger Things Season 4 Volume 2 trailer that shows Eddie standing atop a structure and playing his guitar with decided enthusiasm in the Upside Down. Now, it’s doubtful he actually kills Vecna, but his guitar playing may be the catalyst for the others to escape or Eleven to gain the upper hand. Like I said before, the Duffer Brothers love writing redeeming characters, and Eddie worries he’s a coward. He can pick up the guitar in an effort to show he can be a hero, and he won’t be terrified of running by Vecna.
80% chance of survival
Jim Hopper seemed to die once already, and the odds of him dying again are high considering everything he escapes with Joyce and Murray. He seems quite removed from most of the action in the trailer though, and it feels like a loophole to kill him off again. He’s a heroic guy, and there’s no way he’s not helping the kids if there is a way, though. He’s already said he’d give his life to save El. Coupled with the fact that Eleven needs something big to get her powers back and her death seems pretty plausible.
Nancy is in more trouble than others as she is under Vecna right now, but she is not dead yet. Although her chances aren’t perfect, she has a chance of surviving. My prediction is that she will survive because Steve will come to save her and die saving her. Her death wouldn’t have as much of an impact as others, so I think the group’s Velma is safe for now.
90% chance of survival
Murray Bauman is a doofus, but he often stumbles back into the right thing. It’s a cockroach that will almost certainly survive; however, his closeness to Hopper lowers his chances. On the other hand, Joyce proved to be incredibly capable and brave. She’s devoted to Hopper and her kids, and I have no doubt that her adorable, sassy attitude and mama bear will continue to get her out of trouble.
I’m sure this one comes as a shock to everyone, but I’m confident Max will survive. This does not mean that it will be the same. The odds are stacked against her as it seems unlikely that anyone will survive multiple contacts with Vecna, and her letters to those close to her seem ominous. We don’t know what’s in those letters yet, and the Duffers rarely do things haphazardly. This detail will most certainly factor into the Stranger Things finale. Sadie Sink has done a fantastic job this season, and I wouldn’t be surprised to see her letters being an integral part of season 5. Also, Dacre Montgomery (Billy) is set to be in chapter nine Piggybank, part two of Stranger Things Season 4 part 2 ending. He will save his sister.
100% chance of survival
Lucas and Erica seem to be in a lot of trouble as we see them entering the Creel house with Max. Still, the wise-cracking Erica is virtually untouchable, and Lucas fights back against what is almost certainly some kind of bullying lookalike. Vecna can read minds, and he would be the perfect foil for Lucas, who wanted to fit in and be popular. Dustin and his adorable singing are safe. He will be forever changed by the events of Season 4 Part 2.
Something major happens to snap Eleven out of her inability to access her powers. We know that grief and anger are powerful conduits, and what better way to access your crazy side than to watch your friends and family die. She’s the only one strong enough to defeat Mindflayer and Vecna, so she’s needed in Season 5 of Stranger Things.
Vecna will survive in one form or another. There’s a Season 5 of Stranger Things, and it needs a big bad guy. Plus, there’s the ominous voiceover in the trailer rejoicing at his victory. This could, however, be a head game in favor of Eleven. We know he’s a master manipulator, so I predict he forces El El to watch all his friends die, but it’s all just a trick. He thinks it will break her, but it has the opposite effect and it’s ultimately the breakthrough she needs. Unfortunately, this may be the season that does not end with a victory. Our group may have to retreat and live to fight another day. At least those who are still able to withdraw. Stranger Things Season 4 Part 2 will air on July 1, 2022.
Tracy Palm Tree
As the editor of Signal Horizon, I love watching and writing about genre entertainment. I grew up with old school slashers, but my real passion is television and all things weird and ambiguous. My work can be found here and Travel Weird, where I am the editor.
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