Noah Schnapp Confirms Will Is Gay & Stranger Things 5 Might Explore His Sexuality

“Obviously, we hope for a coming out scene.”

Noah Schnapp Confirms Will Byers Is Gay & 'Stranger Things 5' Might Explore His Sexuality

Spoilers ahead for Stranger Things Season 4. Ask any Stranger Things fan and they’ll tell you the cast gave their best performances in Season 4. It’s why fans are disappointed that among the 13 Emmy nominations the show nabbed, not one was for the cast’s acting. Sadie Sink trended “Running Up That Hill” in her standout performance as Max Mayfield who was *this* close to being murdered by Vecna (the first time around, at least); Joseph Quinn’s Eddie Munson delivered a heartbreaking (and improvised) final speech. And while Noah Schnapp’s scenes were less mortality-related, the actor delivered a pained performance as Will Byers in which he seemed to finally confess his feelings for his best friend Mike Wheeler (Finn Wolfhard).

“It’s pretty clear this season that Will has feelings for Mike,” Schnapp told Variety, adding that the creators have “slowly, slowly” been growing that storyline and “intentionally pulling that out over the past few seasons.” Schnapp continued, “I think for Season 4, it was just me playing this character who loves his best friend but struggles with knowing if he’ll be accepted or not, and feeling like a mistake and like he doesn’t belong. Will has always felt like that. All his friends, they all have girlfriends and they all fit into their different clubs. Will has never really found anywhere to fit in. I think that’s why so many people come up to me and tell me that they love Will and they resonate with him so much, because it’s such a real character.”

It looks like Will will be the focus of Season 5 — with his personal journey as well as his ties with the Upside Down’s bad guys. Schnapp is also hopeful that many of the questions about Will will be resolved in the show’s final season. “Obviously, we hope for a coming out scene,” Schnapp said. “And I also want to see them address this connection to the Mind Flayer and how that fits into the world. And I’ve always been wondering, why was Will the first victim and the first one captured? I just want to see it all tie in and all work out. So I’m excited to see what happens.”

Stranger Things characters Will, Jonathan, and Mike. Netflix

Will’s sexuality has long been in question, and one particular Season 4 van scene felt a lot like a confession, so much so that it sent fans back into the “Is he or is he not gay?” frenzy. While Schnapp previously avoided addressing Will’s sexuality, saying it should be up to the audience’s interpretations, Schnapp now says that after Season 4, there should no longer be any ambiguity.

In the van scene, Will, Mike, Will’s brother Jonathan (Charlie Heaton), and Argyle (Eduardo Franco), are in a pizza van on their way to save Eleven (Millie Bobby Brown), aka Mike’s girlfriend. Mike was feeling a little bit unsure of his relationship so Will assuaged his doubts with a speech that ended up bringing him to tears.

“These past few months, she’s been so lost without you,” Will says. “She’s so different from other people, and when you’re different, sometimes, you feel like a mistake. But you make her feel like she’s not a mistake at all. Like she’s better for being different. And that gives her the courage to fight on. If she was mean to you or she seemed like she was pushing you away, it’s because she’s scared of losing you ... El needs you, Mike. And she always will.” Will then turned to the side and cried. While Mike didn’t notice, Jonathan, who was driving, did.

Speaking about the van scene to Variety, Schnapp said, “This scene was really important for [Will], because it really solidified that truth, that he loves his best friend and he doesn’t know how to tell him.” He also confirmed that Will was “dealing with a little bit of jealousy” when Mike started focusing more on his girlfriend than playing D&D.

Noah Schnapp and Charlie Heaton, who play brothers Will and Jonathan.Netflix

Schnapp also spoke about another scene that could pave the way for Will’s coming out in the future. After Jonathan noticed his younger brother crying, he talked to him in private to tell him he accepts Will. “I don’t want you to forget that I’m here,” Jonathan tells Will in the scene. “And I’ll always be here. No matter what. Because you’re my brother. And I love you. And there is nothing in this world, OK, absolutely nothing, that will ever change that.” The emotional scene, which ended with a hug between the brothers, was apparently not in the original script.


According to Schnapp, the creators wrote the scene after the van scene, “where they saw me crying and the protectiveness that you see with Jonathan looking in the rearview mirror.” He added, “It’s also very important for people to see that Will is not alone — because all we ever see of him is struggling and feeling depressed and that he can’t be himself. Jonathan is talking to him in code — it’s just the perfect way to tell someone like Will that he cares about him and he accepts him no matter what. I think it was really wholesome.”