It’s been nearly a year since the last Stranger Things finale, and we’re still not over the death of Joseph Quinn’s Eddie Munson. In a glorious sequence, the teenage metalhead shredded Metallica’s “Master of Puppets” on his electric guitar in the Upside Down before a swarm of Demobats got to him. But we have to wonder whether or not the Duffer Brothers really killed off the fan-favorite character for good ahead of Stranger Things Season 5.
Over the many months since the Season 4 finale, fans (us included) have had the time to ponder about the death of Eddie Munson. Let’s talk through the question of whether he’s truly gone for good, based on what we know and have theorized.
How Eddie Munson Could Have Survived
Eddie’s final scene in Season 4, which he broke down with CinemaBlend in a 2022 interview, was a tragic but very heroic moment for the Stranger Things character. While his fate looked pretty locked in considering we watched him being ripped apart by those Demobats, a popular theory that’s circulated the internet could explain a scenario where Eddie lives.
Since the Dungeons and Dragons character known as Kas the Bloody-Handed – a vampiric lieutenant of Vecna – was named during Eddie’s game early in the season, some fans think the bats will turn Eddie into a vampire and he’ll return for the final season (via Mashable). One Reddit user even theorized how the use of the songs “Master of Puppets” and “Spellbound” are indicators of this plot point coming our way.
Additionally, when Netflix revealed that the title of the premiere episode of Season 5 would be “Chapter One: The Crawl” on Twitter back in November, fans suggested it was referencing “Master of Puppets” and thus Eddie again since one lyric is “come crawling faster.” Lots of intriguing theories out there!
Why Eddie Munson Likely Died
However, there’s also plenty of evidence pointing to Eddie Munson not rising from the grave before the end of the beloved Netflix series. The Duffer Brothers sounded pretty concrete about Eddie’s death when they spoke on the subject to the Happy Sad Confused podcast. As Matt Duffer shared:
We saw Eddie as a bit of a doomed character. Even imagining the flip side of that where he does survive the battle is not a great life awaiting Eddie back in the right side up either. He was always really designed from the get-go as a doomed character.
As Matt Duffer also said, the hope as writers was to create a character audiences would root for in Eddie so that when he died the impact would be there. As Ross Duffer elaborated:
He was always going to be a tragic character. There was never any other arc for him and there was no ‘how do you survive this’? At the very end, you see people still drawing devil horns on his head. No one in Hawkins is going to accept a supernatural explanation for any of this. He would have wound up in jail and this fantasy that he would have been able to walk and graduate sadly was not ever a realistic outcome for him.
There we have it. Based on those answers, it sounds like Eddie Munson was always meant to appear in the show in Season 4 only. Of course, you never know what’s going to happen on Stranger Things. The final season, even though its production has been impacted by the writers’ strike, will certainly deliver a lot of shocks and surprises for fans. Here’s hoping the creators don’t kill off more fan-favorite characters, like Steve Harrington as fans fear!
There’s plenty of time before we have to cry over the Stranger Things series finale. In the meantime, check out what’s new on Netflix to binge next.