Is Will Byers gay? Stranger Things fans are questioning his sexuality
25 May 2022, 17:13 | Updated: 25 May 2022, 17:21
Fans have been speculating about Will Byers' sexuality ever since Stranger Things first came out.
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Stranger Things fans are certain that Will Byers is gay and now the cast appear to have confirmed the long-running theories.
Ever since Stranger Things debuted, fans have speculated that Will Byers is gay and in love with Mike. After Will disappears in season 1, Joyce tells Hopper that he's been bullied and says: "He's a sensitive kid...Lonnie [Will's father] used to say he was queer, called him a fag." Will's sexuality is never discussed further but viewers think that he is written as queer.
Speculation about Will's sexuality amped up in season 3 and, based on what the cast have said, it looks as though we may get answers in season 4. Noah Schnapp, David Habour and Finn Wolfhard have all now commented on Will's sexuality.
In Stranger Things 3, Noah feels left out when the rest of his friends start romantic relationships with girls. In episode 3, Mike and Lucas are sulking in Mike's basement after falling out with Eleven and Max. Will tries to play Dungeon and Dragons with them but they're totally disinterested. Eventually, Will snaps and leaves. Mike chases after him and they have an argument.
"You're destroying everything, and for what?", Will screams. "So you can swap spit with some stupid girl?
"El's not stupid. It's not my fault you don't like girls," Mike responds. He pauses before following up with: "I'm not trying to be a jerk, ok? But we're not kids anymore. I mean, what did you think, really? That we were never going to get girlfriends? That we're just going to sit in my basement playing games for the rest of our lives?"
Mike's comment sparked a flurry of tweets speculating that Will is gay.
WILL IS GAY MIKE SAID HE DOESNT LIKE GIRLS I HAVE WON #StrangerThings— ًocean dude ST3 SPOILERS (@fallauay) July 4, 2019
Is Will Byers gay?
As it stands, Will has never explicitly stated his sexual preference in Stranger Things, and the homophobic bullying that he receives for being 'sensitive' or 'different' is not treated with much scrutiny. It is assumed that it's just kids, and his father, being mean.
Mike's comment, however, is more ambiguous. It's not entirely clear if he is just scolding Will for calling Eleven "a stupid girl", or if he is merely stating a fact. Mike clearly regrets saying it but doesn't take it back either, which seems odd.
What have the Stranger Things cast said?
Noah Schnapp, who plays Will, has commented on Will's sexuality before.
Writing on Instagram in response to a fan after season one dropped, he wrote: "So I thought it would be time to jump into the conversation. I've been reading stuff for a while. I think everyone here is missing the point. An author called Gary Schmidt came to speak at our school this week and he said that good stories aren't supposed to leave you with answers because then you never question yourself and you forget about it. A good book, or a good show leaves a lot of unanswered questions but makes you think. Which is what you are all doing."
"For me, Will being gay or not is besides the point," he wrote. "Stranger Things is a show about a bunch of kids who are outsiders and find each other because they have been bullied in some way or are different."
He continued: "Does being sensitive, or a loner, or a teenager who likes photography, or a girl with red hair and big glasses, make you gay? I'm only 12 but I do know we all relate to being different. And that's why I think the Duffers wrote the show the way they did. So you can ask all these questions. I hope the real answer never comes out!"
However, it now looks like David Harbour and Finn Wolfhard have confirmed that Will is indeed gay and has a crush on Mike. In a new video for Netflix Latinoamérica David and Finn discuss a theory that suggests Eleven and Will will start a romance in season 4 and they immediately shut it down.
David says: "If you've been watching the show you should know that Will is not interested in El. He's interested in someone else in the group." Finn agrees by saying: "Yeah, you'll see soon...who he's interested in." and David then adds: "He's very interested."
They then say that Will's relationship with Eleven is like a brother/sister relationship, before David says: "Will wants to be in the basement with Mike playing D&D for the rest of his life," and Finn ends by saying: "Exactly, and he's said that."
While their comments are still open for interpretation, it does seem likely that David and Finn are hinting that Will does indeed have a crush on Mike.
It looks as though we will have to wait until season 4 drops to find out if Will's sexuality is explored in any further detail.
Read more about Stranger Things here:
- Stranger Things 4 trailer: 7 huge details and clues you missed
- Jamie Campbell Bower joins Stranger Things 4 cast alongside 11 new characters
- Stranger Things 4 will feature a huge Hopper backstory reveal
- Stranger Things 4 reveals mysterious new phone number in Russian fan package
- Stranger Things 4 new teaser trailer confirms return of Dr Brenner
- Finn Wolfhard says Stranger Things 4 is "really messed up"