Gaten Matarazzo on the set of Stranger Things 5. pic.twitter.com/YrJcaveJ7V
— 21 (@21metgala) January 11, 2024
Dustin was a close friend of Eddie and was there for his final moments so it makes sense that he visits his gravesite. He is honoring his friend by wearing his Hellfire Club T-shirt and appears to be wearing Eddie's rings as well.
While Stranger Things fans have held out hope for Eddie's return in the final season, a glimpse at the leaked images suggests that the likelihood is slim. Instead, it appears that Eddie's death will serve as a pivotal element in the character plot, specifically focusing on Dustin's journey as he copes with the loss of his close friend.
Previously, the Duffer Brothers have said that Dustin's storyline in season 5 will mirror Max's experience when she grappled with grief for her brother Billy. Max was experiencing trauma and became a target for Vecna following her visit to Billy's grave.
Dustin's potential targeting by Vecna, who preys on those facing trauma, promises to be a crucial plot point in the final season. This twist adds suspense to Dustin's journey as he copes with Eddie's death, blending personal struggles with the supernatural elements typical of Stranger Things.
In a previous interview with TV Insider Gaten Matarazzo talked about how he thinks Eddie's death will affect Dustin.
“[Dustin] has dealt with loss in the past. He’s seen horrible things, but to have a very close friend of his brutally die, not just there in front of him, but directly with him is [another thing]. The one thing that I’m always thinking about going into it is that we don’t necessarily see it happen, but Dustin would’ve had to have left [Eddie] there to get out and leave himself.
And that’s something that I was thinking about during the scene with Eddie’s uncle. Because of the leg injury and because of Dustin’s lack of upper body strength, he would’ve needed to leave [Eddie’s] body there while needing to get out himself. And if they’re going to play with that, it’s something I’ll be thinking about quite a lot.”