Stranger Things 4 was an emotional rollercoaster and ended with a cliffhanger. Now brace yourself for more thanks to a new theory which suggests that season 5 will not have a happy ending, especially for Eleven and Mike.
In the end, Vecna finally got his claws into Max's mind. Although El saved Max from dying, she wasn't able to prevent Vecna from breaking all of her bones as she was in a comatose state. Max is seen laying unconscious in a hospital bed at the end of season 4. The episode concludes with a haunting revelation: the Upside Down is encroaching into the real world, through a colossal earthquake that splits the ground in half.
The ending of season 4 has left fans wondering about Vecna's fate and Max's well-being. Hence they are turning to the internet in search of theories regarding the future of the Hawkins group. A theory shared on Reddit's r/FanTheories explores a potential conclusion for Stranger Things 5 which could rescue Hawkins from the Upside Down but poses challenges for the relationship between Eleven and Mike.
The theory says "Eleven should take Vecna's place as the new ruler of the Upside Down and make it into a paradise," posited Reddit user u/oliness. "As long as she stays [in our world], a gate will continue to open. She is like a DnD sorcerer, and a link to the UD. As long as she stays, a gate will continue to open. Therefore, the show can't end with her living happily ever after with Mike, and only using her powers sparingly if at all.
The idea tying it all up is that the UD is a subtle world. How it looks is the result of the thoughts and emotions of the beings who access it. This is why before 001 was banished it was a wasteland, and then when Will was captured it looked like 1983 Hawkins. And why sometimes people locate themselves in their own memories when they're there."
The author further adds, "This means that as long as there are sorcerers who are born with these powers, there will be chaos as the UD erupts into Hawkins and the wider world. Therefore, the end of Eleven's character arc shouldn't be her forgetting her powers and being normal, it should be her becoming a Mentor archetype. As new children are born who can access the UD, she can contact them and teach them to do good - as she has decided not to follow 001 and 008 into evil. If Henry had had this, he may have become good. And future children like him can be guided by Eleven."
So according to the theory, because of El's powers, she can't remain on Earth without strange things — like unwanted gate openings and the arrival of new monsters — continuing to happen to the people that she loves. "Mike accepts that he can't be with Eleven," the theory concludes. "The end of Eleven's character arc shouldn't be her forgetting her powers and being normal, it should be her becoming a Mentor archetype [from within the Upside Down]."
For most of Stranger Things fans it will be a bittersweet ending as the Hawkins' crew will be safe, but Eleven will have to sacrifice and live in the Upside Down.