‘He’s gay and he loves Mike’

Stranger Things Star Noah Schnapp finally says the quiet part about the series’ blockbuster fourth season out loud – and fans couldn’t be happier. In a new interview with Variety, the 17-year-old actor confirmed that his alter ego, Will Byers, longs to be more than friends with his childhood friend Mike Wheeler (Finn Wolfhard). “Now it’s 100% clear that he’s gay and he loves Mike,” Schnapp notes, adding that Stranger Things creators Matt and Ross Duffer have gradually made it clear over the course of the show’s run. “It was a slow arc. I think it’s made so beautiful because it’s so easy to make a character like just suddenly being gay.”

Will’s true feelings were strongly implied throughout the season, appearing in a crucial scene from the penultimate episode, where he comforts his friend after Mike opens up about his fear of losing his girlfriend, Eleven (Millie Bobby Brown).

“The last few months she’s been so lost without you,” Will says, speaking clearly of himself. “She is so different from other people, and when you are different you sometimes feel like a mistake. But you make her feel that she is not a mistake at all … and that gives her the courage to fight on. … So yes, El needs you Mike: and she always will. “

Fans took that sequence as a confirmation of Will’s sexuality, though Schnapp initially insisted on giving a definitive answer. “I feel like they never really address it or openly say how Will is,” the actor said in another Variety interview from May. “I think it’s the beauty of it that it’s just up to the audience’s interpretation whether it’s Will just refusing to grow up and growing up slower than his friends, or whether he’s really gay.”

Noah Schnapp and Finn Wolfhard in season 4 of Stranger Things.  (Photo: Lent by Netflix)

Noah Schnapp and Finn Wolfhard in season 4 of Stranger Things. (Photo: Lent by Netflix)

But with the fifth and final season on the horizon, Schnapp no ‚Äč‚Äčlonger keeps Will’s identity a secret. “Years ago in season 1, I did not know where Duffers wanted to go with this character,” he says in his latest Variety interview. “So I was kind of figuring it out with the audience. But now that I’ve talked to them and seen the show, I know what they want with it.”

Schnapp also reveals that another key moment in Will’s journey – his emotional conversation with his older brother, Jonathan (Charlie Heaton), in the season 4 finale – was immediately invented. “It was only after I made the scene with me in the van where they saw me crying and the protection you see with Jonathan looking in the rearview mirror. They were like, we need a scene with it. So they wrote it while we were filming. “

“It’s also very important for people to see that Will is not alone,” Schnapp continues. “Because all we’re ever seeing of him is fighting and feeling depressed, and that he can not be himself. Jonathan is talking to him in code – it’s just the perfect way to tell someone like Will that he keeps of him and he accepts him no no matter what. I think it was really healthy. “

On Twitter, fans are both excited that Will is finally living by his truth, and amazed that it is somehow a surprise.

Stranger Things currently streaming on Netflix.

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