Fans have been speculating for years that Will may be gay and have a crush on his best friend Mike, portrayed by Finn Wolfhard.
Will Byers has had a rough time in both the real world and the Upside Down across four seasons of "Stranger Things," but he's also been struggling with something else that's been eating him up.
Throughout this latest season of the smash hit Netflix series, Noah Schnapp's character has been hinting at something that he's keeping to himself, with many speculating it has to do with the character's sexuality. Will is the only of the young leads to have not had a romantic relationship on the show.
Fan speculation has been that Will is struggling because he's gay and doesn't know how to come out. As hard as it can be for some members of the LGBTQ+ community to be their authentic selves in 2022, it was exponentially more difficult to do in the 1980s.
A few key scenes also had fans thinking that Will's situation is even more complicated, as he's also developed romantic feelings for his best friend Mike, portrayed by Finn Wolfhard. Mike, however, is in a relationship with Millie Bobby Brown's Eleven.
So is there any truth to the rumors or could Will be harboring a different secret? For a while now, Schnapp has been saying that he doesn't know either, telling Variety in May that Will's sexuality is "up to the audience's interpretation."
Now, though, he's ready to be a little more direct about just what's going on. "I mean, it's pretty clear this season that Will has feelings for Mike," Schnapp told Variety in a new interview. He said the Duffer Brothers have been "pulling that out" throughout the series.
"For Season 4, it was just me playing this character who loves his best friend but struggles with knowing if he’ll be accepted or not, and feeling like a mistake and like he doesn’t belong," Schnapp said. "Will has always felt like that."
The young actor revealed that one of the season's most powerful scenes was actually a direct result of the moment between Will and Mike where Will basically told Mike how he felt without really telling him -- he instead was talking about Eleven's feelings for Mike.
Because of how that scene played out, and how Will's older brother Jonathan (Charlie Heaton) responded, the Duffers added the scene where Jonathan basically tells Will that he knows Will's truth and he still loves him and will be there for him -- all without ever explicitly stating anything.
"It was only until after I did the scene of me in the van, where they saw me crying and the protectiveness that you see with Jonathan looking in the rearview mirror. They were like, we need a scene with that," Schnapp explained.
"So they wrote it as we were filming," he continued. "It’s also very important for people to see that Will is not alone — because all we ever see of him is struggling and feeling depressed and that he can’t be himself."
Schnapp also addressed the recent mini-feud he found himself embroiled in with Doja Cat when he shared her DMs asking him to help her slide into the DMs of this season's "Stranger" breakout star, Joseph Quinn. Quinn's metalhead Eddie Munson quickly became a fan favorite.
"I posted that not thinking too much of it, but obviously it hurt her feelings. So, as I should, I apologized," Schnapp said, sharing additionally that Doja was "totally okay with it, and was like, "I’m sorry how I reacted.'"
"It was all good. I love her. I’m like the biggest fan of her music, and I told her that. I was like, you’re literally my role model," he added. "It’s all good."
He then emphasized that "people make such a big deal out of everything when it’s on the internet, but, like, in reality, it’s like a two minute thing."
In looking ahead to the fifth and final season, Schnapp said that he's hopeful for a coming out scene for Will. He said that the Duffers told him "that they're going to focus more on Will and build that storyline."
So, he's also hoping they'll cover his weird connection to the Mind Flayer, how he can still sense Vecna and more. "I've always been wondering, why was Will the first victim and the first one captured?" he mused. "I just want to see it all tie in and all work out."