Finn Wolfhard Weighs in on Will’s Love for Mike in Stranger Things
Finn Wolfhard Weighs in on Will’s Love for Mike in 'Stranger Things'
Questions about Will's sexuality have ramped up with the start of season four.
Stranger Things has captivated audiences since the monster-centric supernatural series first premiered on Netflix back in 2016, but as we creep towards the final two episodes of the season, one of the main questions on fans' minds has been something much more human: Is Will Byers gay?
Finn Wolfhard, who plays Mike Wheeler, Will's best friend and the person many have speculated the now-15-year-old character is in love with, is the latest cast member to weigh in on Will’s sexuality.
Digital Spy recently asked the actor if he thinks Will’s feelings towards Mike are “shifting towards a more endearing, kind of heartfelt, romantic affection.” Unlike other actors who have tip-toed around the question a bit, Wolfhard answered affirmatively.
“Yeah. I think you find out slowly through the season, Will’s kind of love towards Mike, and I think it’s a really beautiful thing.”
Questions about Will’s sexuality have persisted since the early days of the show, particularly before the Netflix hit introduced any queer characters at all. He fits a lot of stereotypes, and the show’s reluctance to canonize his potential queerness has been of frustration to fans as the character has gotten older.
In particular, the seemingly wishy-washy comments from cast and crew declining to label Will have been the topic of debate since the first chunk of the final season came out last week.
“I feel like they never really address it or blatantly say how Will is,” Schnapp recently told Variety. “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.”
Many fans have pointed out that with conservatives fighting to roll back acceptance for LGBTQ+ people, now is not an ideal time for media to embrace the concept of no labels for queer people. At best, it goes over the heads of viewers embracing a heteronormative world; at worst, it reinforces the idea that being quiet about being gay so as not to upset the status quo is preferable.
At the same time, stories can take time to unfold, and characters — especially young characters — can take time to figure out who they are. And it’s understandable that actors and writers may not want to give that up ahead of the narrative itself.
With two episodes remaining before Stranger Things season 4 comes to an end, there’s still time for Will to figure some things out and share them with both his friends and the audience at home — if the show lets him.
Stranger Things season 4 is now streaming on Netflix.