WARNING: This article contains SPOILERS for Stranger Things season 4, volume 2.
Stranger Things season 4, volume 2 is now available on Netflix, but there are still some stories to be told before Stranger Things ends, prompting questions of whether Stranger Things season 5 is the last. In an unprecedented decision for the streaming platform, Netflix decided to split Stranger Things season 4 in two, with the first seven episodes being released at the end of May, followed by the two-part, feature-length finale that now arrives on the streaming platform. Unlike previous seasons, the Stranger Things season 4 ending did not reset the story and wrap up the conflicts but rather set up what will be Eleven and her friends’ most difficult battle yet – saving Hawkins and the entire world.
As expected, Stranger Things season 4, volume 2 explored more about the previous reveal that Vecna was Number One, and it showed how the villain was able to make the Upside Down his own. In a way, Vecna (Henry) had been Stranger Things‘ villain since season 1, as he created the Mind-Flayer. As such, it became easy to predict that Vecna was setting up to be Stranger Things‘ final boss, and thus he could not be defeated at the end of Stranger Things season 4. This was proved correct at the end of volume 2, as Vecna is not only still alive but also on a mission to end the world.
After three seasons of deeply hidden mysteries, never solved deaths, and cover-up stories for what was happening in Hawkins, Stranger Things season 4 represents a point of no return for the story of the show. Hawkins is merging with the Upside Down, and it will take more than last-minute plans and Eleven closing one or two gates to save the town and the world. Vecna was able to cause a lot of trouble for the main characters, including Max’s death in Stranger Things, and the situation has now escalated, as shown in the final shot of season 4. There may not have been as many Stranger Things season 4 deaths as some were expecting, but the season did increase the stakes for the already confirmed Stranger Things season 5.
Yes, Stranger Things season 5 will be last. In February 2022, before Stranger Things season 4, volume 1 dropped, the show’s creators, Matt and Ross Duffer, revealed in an open letter that Stranger Things would end with season 5. The Duffer brothers pointed out that the plan had always been for Stranger Things to last to “four or five seasons,” and the former option was not possible because season 4 would get too packed. That explanation adds to how long Stranger Things season 4’s final two episodes were, with “The Piggyback” running for almost two and a half hours. It is still not possible to say how many episodes Stranger Things season 5 will have or when will Stranger Things season 5 premiere, but the show’s next season is indeed its final one. Despite Stranger Things being Netflix’s flagship for the past six years, the show is close to finishing the story it set out to tell. Not only did the story risk becoming too repetitive and with no resolution for the mysteries of Hawkins and the Upside Down, but Stranger Things season 4 is reportedly one of the most expansive seasons of television ever produced – with a reported budget of $30 million per episode.
In the same open letter that announced Stranger Things season 5 will be the last, the Duffer brothers also hint at possible Stranger Things spinoffs, as they stated that “there are still many more exciting stories to tell within the world of Stranger Things.” The creators later confirmed that they are indeed developing a Stranger Things spinoff concurrently with season 5. However, the duo highlighted that the planned spinoff is “going to be different than what anyone is expecting, including Netflix.” Curiously, it seems that the only person who knows what exactly the Stranger Things spinoff is going to be like is Finn Wolfhard, who plays Mike in Stranger Things, and that is because the actor “correctly guessed what it was going to be about.”
Not many shows get to have a proper ending, so it is good that the Duffer brothers have been planning for Stranger Things to end on season 5 for a while now. Fortunately, audiences might not have to say goodbye to that world for too long, as at least that one spinoff is in early development. It remains to be seen how Stranger Things season 5 will wrap up Eleven and her friend’s story and if it will set up any other TV shows.
Next: Why THAT Character Died In The Stranger Things Season 4 Finale
Stranger Things season 4 is now streaming on Netflix.
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