If you thought you were anxious to know whether or not Jim Hopper is dead or alive on Stranger Things, that's nothing compared to how the actor playing him feels since, according to him, he's in the exact same boat as the rest of us. While appearing on The Late Show with Seth Meyers this week, David Harbour teased Hopper's fate on Stranger Things in a very unexpected way. Because while he claims to know very little about what becomes of his character (if anything) next season, he decided that the best way to get answers would be to go right to the source. So he FaceTimed the Duffer Brothers right then and there to get to the bottom of things.
But before he picked up the phone, Harbour respected the integrity of his fans and gave a fair warning before discussing the major spoilers of Season 3. “If you don’t want to know about this stuff, I guess turn down the [volume]," he warned, while Meyers added, “But, also, try to keep up with culture as it happens." After that, though, all bets were off, as the actor began to speculate what happened to Hopper at the end of Stranger Things 3.
Speaking of what's to come, Harbour seemed determined to have viewers believe that he still doesn't know what ultimately happened to Hopper and if he's still alive. So what do you do when you don't know the answer to something? You contact your boss, which is precisely what Harbour did by whipping out his phone and FaceTiming Stranger Things creators Matt and Ross Duffer.
Of course, the Duffer Brothers did their best to dodge the question altogether. But in the end, they did have one comment to make on the matter: “We’re still figuring it out.”
Hopper's journey appeared to be over at the end of Season 3 after he sacrificed himself in order for the gate between Hawkins and the Upside Down to be closed. Hopper was presumed dead in the explosion. However, a post-credits scene revealed that the Russians had a prisoner in their custody that they referred to as "the American," leading fans to theorize that it could be Hopper.
“I was like, ‘Oh, clearly I’m the American,'” Harbour told Meyers during the segment. “And then I haven’t gotten many phone calls.” But even if Hopper isn't the American, there are still a few different ways he could still be alive. The Stranger Things 4 teaser featured Hopper's cabin in the Upside Down with a light inside that seemed to be turning on and off. Could Hopper have jumped into the portal just before it closed, leaving him trapped in the Upside Down? It's a solid theory and one that fans are hoping to see come to fruition when Season 4 drops.
Back in July, the Duffer Brothers discussed the topic more in depth with Entertainment Weekly, warning fans that it's dangerous to assume anything when it comes to this show. “You definitely should not assume anything,” Matt teased when asked if Hopper could be the mystery American in Russia. “The line that Russian guard said is purposely intended to spark debate. We need people to ask the very questions that you’re asking.”
So basically, fans still can't say for sure what becomes of poor Hopper, though if Harbour is feeling so bold as to FaceTime the Duffer brothers on-camera, at least we know he's still in contact with the showrunners.