One thing that has become increasingly obvious to Stranger Things fans, now that the first part of season four is out on Netflix, is that Will Byers (Noah Schnapp) is…not straight. However, Schnapp himself and co-star Millie Bobby Brown say that they don’t want to put a label on it.
The evidence has been mounting since the first season, but in season four, it seems more clear than ever. Byers chooses Alan Turing as a hero to deliver a presentation on in school, and recoils when a girl shows interest in him. He also says to Mike (who many fans believe Will has a crush on); “Sometimes, I think it’s just scary, to open up like that — to say how you really feel, especially to people you care about the most. Because what if — what if they don’t like the truth?”
In a recent interview with Variety, Schnapp and Brown were asked about it. Schnapp responded; “I feel like they never really address it or blatantly say how Will is. I think that’s the beauty of it, that it’s just up to the audience’s interpretation, if it’s Will kind of just refusing to grow up and growing up slower than his friends, or if he is really gay.”
“Can I just say, it’s 2022 and we don’t have to label things,” Brown added. “I think what’s really nice about Will’s character is that he’s just a human being going through his own personal demons and issues. So many kids out there don’t know, and that’s OK. That’s OK to not know. And that’s OK not to label things.”
Schnapp agreed; “I find that people do reach to put a label on him and just want to know, so badly, like, ‘Oh, and this is it.’ He’s just confused and growing up. And that’s what it is to be a kid.” The reaction online has overwhelmingly been from people disappointed at the show’s lack of queer representation. Maya Hawke reportedly had to push for Robin to come out in season three.
However, David Harbour (who plays Hopper), said in a separate interview; “If you’ve been watching the show, you should know that Will is not interested in El (Millie Bobby Brown). He’s interested in someone else in the group.” Later, Harbour added, “Will wants to be in the basement with Mike playing D&D for the rest of his life.”
Check out our guide to the best sci-fi series.