‘Stranger Things’ Fans Question Whether Will Byers’ Friends Forgot About His Birthday During Season 4

Did ‘Stranger Things’ Season 4 Hint That Will's Friends Forgot His Birthday
Noah Schnapp as Will Byers. Courtesy of Netflix

A mistake or a clue? Stranger Things season 4 introduced fans to a new villain and some spooky storytelling — but it was a possible onscreen mix-up that had everyone talking.

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After the new season debuted on Friday, May 27, viewers were quick to point out potential subtext for Will’s (Noah Schnapp) distant behavior.

“They forgot will’s birthday. I’m f–king crying,” one social media user tweeted alongside a screenshot of the footage taken of Eleven (Millie Bobby Brown) at the skating ring in episode 2. The date on the tape reads March 22, which Joyce (Winona Ryder) previously confirmed as Will’s birthday during season 2.

The official account for the Stranger Things writer’s room previously seemed to tease that Will’s birthday may get forgotten by others, tweeting in March 2020, “Some friends forget to play dnd and some forget birthdays, it happens.”

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In response to the connection, some fans pointed out that this explains why Will is so upset throughout the season. “IT WAS WILL’S BIRTHDAY AND THEY DIDNT EVEN MENTION. HE WAS JUST THIRD WHEELING MIKE AND ELEVEN THE WHOLE DAY. ON HIS BIRTHDAY. U CAN SEE IT SAID MARCH 22 ON THE VIDEO CAMERA. I THINK THE SHOW FORGOT,” one person wrote via Twitter.

Did ‘Stranger Things’ Season 4 Hint That Will's Friends Forgot His Birthday
Millie Bobby Brown as Eleven and Noah Schnapp as Will Byers. Courtesy of Netflix

Other social media users, however, questioned whether the mistake was intentional. “Gonna speak my mind… i dont believe that the duffers forgot about will’s birthday or messed it up. they’ve had three whole years to make this season. they took care of every single detail and it’s too weird that they chose march 22nd out of ALL dates to be a coincidence,” a commentator tweeted.

Will’s story line in season 4 has been a topic of conversation since the show started streaming on Friday. During volume 1, some viewers speculated that Will is preparing to reveal romantic feelings for his best friend Mike (Finn Wolfhard).

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Schnapp, 17, for his part, noted that he appreciated how the show has approached Will’s sexuality. “I feel like they never really address it or blatantly say how Will is,” the actor told Variety on Monday, March 30. “I think that’s the beauty of it, that it’s just up to the audience’s interpretation, if it’s Will kind of just refusing to grow up and growing up slower than his friends, or if he is really gay.”

His costar Brown, 18, also praised creators Matt and Ross Duffer for allowing Will to explore his identity throughout the years. “Can I just say, it’s 2022 and we don’t have to label things,” she declared. “I think what’s really nice about Will’s character is that he’s just a human being going through his own personal demons and issues. So many kids out there don’t know, and that’s OK. That’s OK to not know. And that’s OK not to label things.”

For Schnapp, it wouldn’t make sense to have Will discuss his feelings about romance until the character is ready. “I find that people do reach to put a label on him and just want to know, so badly, like, ‘Oh, and this is it,’” he added. “He’s just confused and growing up. And that’s what it is to be a kid.”

Season 4 of Stranger Things is streaming on Netflix.

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