Throughout the full series of Stranger Things, The Duffer Brothers have been teasing the fans, over the fact that Will Byers may not be heterosexual after all. In this discussion I am going to presume he is homosexual, after all the hints and teases over the years. So rather than figuring out and looking back at the hints, I wanted to ask the question - should the character, Will Byers, come out as gay?
For some of you, it is a simple answer, with a clear and simple… YES! I believe this is because we live in the progressive and understanding 21st Centerury. But to them I ask, was the world that accepting in the 80s?
Figure 1 shows the american public and their own opinions on whether same sex relationships should be legal or not.
The graph starts in the year 1977, and it’s an even split for 43% each (which is still bad for the community at that time).
The graph ends with the year 2012 with 63% believing that it should be legal.
However, our main focus should be the year when Stranger Things 4 takes place, which is 1896. And, unfortuantely, this is one of the worst years for gay and lesbian relationships, as majority of the public are against the idea of them. They would rather see gay and lesbian relationships be illegal then too see them happy within themselves.
In figure 2, we see another graph about how the american public pervieve the morality over same sex relationships. The results are once again shocking, basically saying that in 1986, one in every two american citizen thought same sex relations were “Always Wrong”.
So, how does this realate back to Will Byers? Will Byers is a 15 year old boy who has been brought up in a small town in probably the worst years alive for same sex couples. Nothing against the rest of the Hawkins Crew, but they have also probably been brought up with these anti-gay views implemented into their mindsets.
Robin Buckley, another LGBT character in the show has only ever told Steve – one of the more maturer characters of the group. From what it seems, he is the only one that knows and that she can’t openly be herself.
To conclude, I think that Will shouldn’t openly come out as gay mainly because of the negagive implications it could have on himself and his friendships. I think he might tell Mike as his trusted best friend but I am still unsure of how Mike would react. If he was born in todays world, then he would be acceptedand loved but unfortuantely he was born in the 80s and this was the reality for any closteted person back then.