SPOILER WARNING - Continue at your own risk!
Stranger Things Season 4 is over after nine episodes. With each episode lasting over an hour, fans got to witness and experience one of the longest Stranger Things seasons in a long while. There’s so much to unveil behind Stranger Things’ plot.
From Will Byers indirectly and informally coming out, to Jim Hoppers and Joyce Byers reuniting, and even Vecna getting burnt to a crisp, the story is only getting more compelling as the Hawkins squad of evil-fighting heroes save the world from Vecna.
As Season 4 concludes, the final question about Season 5’s antagonist and leading plot hook remains. And the final episode provided everything fans needed to expect from the following season and, ultimately, the last battle the Hawkins squad would ever face.
Ending on an altered version of “where’s waldo,” Vecna vanishes at the ending of Season 4. In summary, Vecna attempts to kill Max Mayfield but fails halfway leaving her real body crippled and bleeding. Due to interference by an awakened Eleven, Vecna fails to complete the ritual to the very end.
After all the trouble and fighting in both Max and Vecna’s mind realms, the antagonist gets choked by Eleven, but before she can snap his evil goals, the makeshift world slowly disappears.
Because Eleven gained control of Vecna, all his minions and tentacles stopped, allowing Nancy Wheeler, Steve Harrington, and Robin Buckley to stop Vecna in the Upside Down with Molotov cocktails.
They throw the flaming bottles at the tranced, conjuring Vecna to bring him out of the mind spell and into reality.
Burning, sizzling, and stumbling, Vecna, in his proper form, is forced back by the fire and shotgun barrels courtesy of Nancy and falls back into a window, out of the house, and three stories down to the ground.
Presumably dead, the trio venture downstairs to find the injured Vecna gone. Four chimes come from the clock inside the house, signaling the emergence and connection of worlds between Hawkins and the Upside Down.
Again, Vecna is nowhere to be seen, yet the ground ruptures open, showing Hawkins, destroyed and decimated. The finale symbolizes Vecna’s survival and the start of the end of the world in Stranger Things.
Why does Vecna need to kill four people?
Vecna’s the conjurer, the spellcaster, the man behind all the schemes in Stranger Things. Unlike Eleven, Vecna didn’t have the power to open gates to and from the Upside Down.
He was able to absorb the strength of others, and only in doing so could he take a portion of Eleven’s powers. But not without a requirement could Vecna ever open a large enough gate.
Vecna needs to kill four people as a part of his power to connect all four corners of Hawkins and open a city-wide hell gate spanning like a cross.
He can open gates like Eleven with the power he’s acquired, but he needs the four deaths to bring destruction to the world.
He doesn’t want to open a door to the real world; he wants to break the barrier and connect both realms to wreak havoc across Hawkins first, then the world.
Every character Vecna has killed in Stranger Things Season 4
In Vecna’s successful pursuit of bridging both worlds in Season 4, the antagonist’s killed a handful of people in the process. To complete the ritual, Vecna’s killed Chrissy, Fred, Patrick, and sort of Max. Although Eleven did bring Max back to life, it was too late for her to undo Vecna’s spell, and her heart stopped for a minute, technically killing her.
Eddie Munson died in a battle against the Upside Down bats. The spell caused Hawkins’ grounds to rupture, killing Jason, who was passed out after getting knocked out by Lucas in a fight, and twenty-two other people due to the earthquakes across the city.
Besides the recent deaths, Vecna, formerly known as Henry Creel, killed his mom and sister. After arriving under Dr. Martin Brenner’s care, he killed fifteen gifted kids, alongside the nurses, doctors, and guards. So, in total, Vecna’s killed roughly over fifty people.
Who Might Vecna Kill Next in Season 5?
Since Vecna feeds off negativity like guilt, sadness, and pain, while also sapping off the memories of his victims, there are a few theories about who he might target next.
Vecna’s already marked Nancy but hasn’t killed her yet. Nancy also resents her action after leaving Barbara alone near the pool to die in Season 1. As Max said, once you’re marked, you can’t really escape. So, in theory, it could also mean Nancy still is connected to Vecna.
Lucas is connected to Max and could be Vecna’s next victim. After all, Lucas couldn’t protect Max like he said he would and let her die in the first place for a minute. She’s still alive thanks to Eleven, but her coma could’ve been avoided if Lucas had put a little more strength into his punches against Jason. This grief might lead to Lucas being Vecna's next victim.
Dustin might be a potential victim because he failed to protect Eddie. Dustin wanted to save Eddie and fight alongside him, but he couldn’t make it in time, and he died. Dustin’s guilt and sorrow overcame him when he gave Eddie’s uncle his nephew’s necklace as a token of his death, meaning he could still feel a massive burden over his shoulders for the loss of his closest friend.
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Will might be back in Vecna’s grasp in Season 5. After escaping the Demogorgon, shadow monsters, and mind flayer, Will’s connection with Vecna is stronger than ever, considering both worlds are bridged. Will’s presence might allow Vecna to easily control him, or even worse, kill him.
But these are only fan theories. If you really want to know who Vecna makes his victim next, you'll have to wait for Stranger Things Season 5 coming out in the Summer of 2024.
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Featured image courtesy of Netflix.