Spoiler alert: this article contains spoilers for Season 4, Vol. 2 of Stranger Things.
Spanning nearly four hours, Season 4, Episodes 8 and 9 of Stranger Things offers a slick resolution to the main storylines, including Jim Hopper's (David Harbour) time in a labor camp in Kamchatka, Russia, Eleven's (Millie Bobby Brown) grappling with the abrupt loss and recovery of her powers, and the continuing threat posed by the brand new baddie, Vecna (Jamie Campbell Bower).
Several characters die in Season 4, Vol. 2 of 'Stranger Things.' Here's the ending explained.
Eddie Munson (Joseph Quinn) puts up quite the fight, delivering a jaw-dropping guitar solo, driving his bike across the Upside Down, and relentlessly cheering up Dustin Henderson (Gaten Matarazzo) when the going gets heavy. He goes out as a hero in Season 4, Episode 9. Max (Sadie Sink) enters into a coma. Hopper kills the creature that has kept the Russian prisoners preoccupied for so long. What else happens at the end of Season 4, Vol. 2?
As a casual conversation between Will (Noah Schnapp) and Mike (Finn Wolfhard) at the tail end of Season 4, Episode 9 of Stranger Things seems to suggest, Vecna somehow manages to defy the rule of physics and survive the sustained murder attempt Eleven, Robin (Maya Hawke), Steve (Joe Keery) and the other kids orchestrate against him. At one point, Vecna goes up in flames. Apparently, this isn't going to stop him from transforming Hawkins, Ind., from the inside out.
Did Vecna die in Season 4, Vol. 2 of 'Stranger Things'?
"[One] is not [dead and rotting," Will tells Mike. "Now that I'm here, in Hawkins, I can feel him. And he's hurting. But he is still alive. It's strange, knowing now who it was the whole time, but I can still remember what he thinks, and how he thinks. And he's not going to stop. Ever. Not until he's taken everything. And everyone. We have to kill him."
As the scene seems to suggest, Vecna is already busy hatching his next masterplan. Will he come up with something new in Season 6? There's no way of telling at this stage. Alive or not, Vecna has already done quite a bit of damage — as Hawkins, Ind., has now been wrecked by a series of weirdly timed natural disasters.
Which couples weather the storm Season 4 of 'Stranger Things' poses?
Lucas Sinclair (Caleb McLaughlin) and his sister, Erica (Priah Ferguson), pay a visit to Max. The ending of Season 4 of Stranger Things finds Max in the hospital. She is still battling the coma.
Jonathan (Charlie Heaton) and Nancy (Natalia Dyer) seemingly make up, even though sparks are flying between Nancy and Steve. Mike (Finn Wolfhard) and Eleven seem to be together. Robin finally gets to talk to her longstanding crush, Vickie (Amybeth McNulty).
At the end of Season 4, Episode 9, Eleven spins a bottle. She and the others visit Max at the hospital. Hopper and Joyce stop by.
But the idyllic reunion quickly gives way to something altogether more harrowing. A white, snowflake-like substance starts to fall from the sky, a volcano eruption-like phenomenon can be seen in the background, and the sky is swiftly turning black. As the scene suggests, Vecna isn't about to waste any time.
Season 4 of Stranger Things is available on Netflix now.