Stranger Things 4: 10 MVPs Of The Season

Content Warning: SPOILERS Ahead For Stranger Things 4

Stranger Things 4 has proven to be one of the most exciting seasons yet for the Netflix original series, with the entire cast of beloved characters returning for yet another adventure involving the supernatural horrors of the Upside Down and the villainous Vecna.

Though every character has their moment to shine throughout the latest batch of episodes, certain protagonists prove to be far more useful in the fight against Vecna ​​than others. In fact, a handful of the main cast proves to be among the most valuable tools in taking down StrangerThings‘ latest supervillain.


Dustin Henderson

Dustin Henderson smiling on the couch

Gaten Matarazzo returns as fan-favorite character Dustin Henderson who, in this season, works tirelessly to prove that the leader of his high school’s Dungeons and Dragons club, Eddie Munson, is innocent of a string of murders occurring in Hawkins. Along the way, he is caught up in the plot of the villainous Vecna–and the subsequent plan to bring him down.

As always, Dustin has proved to be endlessly quotable this season, lending some levity to an otherwise dire situation. Though his contributions don’t prove as crucial to the plot as in previous seasons, Dustin still manages to piece together very important parts of Vecna’s puzzle and takes part in the dangerous trip to the Upside Down to stop the powerful villain.

dr owens

Paul Reiser once again appears as Dr. Owens, one of StrangerThings‘ most underrated characters. Owens is seen to be a partner of Dr. Brenner, working to help Eleven regain her powers and often keeping Brenner at bay when the dangerous scientist threatens to push his daughter too far.

Though his screentime in the fourth season of the series is much smaller than in others, Reiser’s character still makes massive contributions to the main group. He is largely responsible for the restoration of Eleven’s powers, at the expense of his own career. By the season’s end, he is even presumed to have been taken captive by the government for helping eleven to escape their clutches. At least he attempted to do the right thing in the end.

Nancy Wheeler

Nancy Wheeler in Stranger Things Season 4

Nancy Wheeler, one of the smartest members of the main cast of StrangerThings, is back in action in the fourth season. Portrayed by Natalia Dyer, Nancy leads the Hawkins-based group in unraveling the mystery of Vecna ​​and formulates their ultimate plan to defeat the master of the Upside Down once and for all.

Nancy can always be relied upon to put together the bigger story that no one else sees. Over the course of this season, she pieces together enough about Vecna’s backstory that give her friends a fighting chance, and even acts as their de facto leader in their assassination attempt on the villain. Without her help, Vecna ​​would undoubtedly have succeeded in his ultimate goal of destroying the world.

Eddie Munson

Eddie Munson Upside Down Stranger Things Song

Joseph Quinn joins the cast of StrangerThings as Eddie Munson, the leader of Hawkins High’s Hellfire Club. After a mysterious string of murders is pinned on him, Eddie goes on the run, eventually teaming up with the protagonists to stop Vecna ​​from claiming any more victims.

Though Eddie is initially set up as a character that isn’t to be trusted, he ultimately proved invaluable to the team. He gives the group much-needed information about Vecna’s method of killing and even distracts a group of demonic bats from the Upside Down in “the most metal concert ever.” In the end, he proves his true heroism by sacrificing his life to buy the others more time.

Murray Bauman

Stranger Things trailer Murray radio

Brett Gelman portrays one of StrangerThings‘ most unique (and meme-worthy) characters, Murray Bauman. The conspiracy theorist of the group, Murray sets Joyce on her quest to the USSR, joining her along the way to save his friend Hopper.

Much to the audience’s delight, Murray has far more screentime than ever before in this season, proving his usefulness in more ways than one. The character’s ability to speak fluent Russian proves invaluable on Joyce’s mission to save Hopper–and his karate skills come in handy as well.

Joyce Byers

Stranger Things Season 4 Joyce

In Stranger Things 4, Winona Ryder’s Joyce Byers goes further than ever before, traveling to the USSR on a hunch that Hopper may indeed be alive and captive there. Teaming up with Murray Bauman, she works tirelessly to make her way to save her lost lover, hitting countless dead ends along the way.

Joyce once again proves to be an unstoppable force of nature when it comes to her loved ones. Unwilling to yield to the idea that she may be unable to save Hopper, Joyce moves heaven and earth to make it to Russia to reunite with him. Throughout this season, Joyce proves not for the first time that she is a valuable asset in any mission the group might face.

Jim Hopper

Stranger Things Season 4 David Harbor as Jim Hopper Russian Prisoner

Presumed dead at the end of season 3, David Harbour’s Jim Hopper re-emerges in a Russian gulag at the beginning of the new season, spending the next several episodes attempting to escape. Over the course of the season, Hopper not only manages to evade Soviet clutches but also takes down threats stemming from the Upside Down along the way.

As audiences have come to expect, Hopper is not one to take his fate laying down. He faces obstacle after obstacle in trying to escape the gulag and is eventually victorious in his efforts. However, he also again proves his heroism by returning to fight the escaped creatures, slaying one with a sword in a truly epic fashion.

Steve Harington

Steve Harrington in the water looking off dramatically

Fan-favorite character Steve Harrington, played by Joe Keery, is once again babysitting the younger members of the cast in this season, joining them as they travel to the Upside Down in order to stop Vecna ​​from taking any more lives. Along the way, he deals with his resurfacing feelings for Nancy Wheeler, wishing he had been a better boyfriend to her when he’d had the chance.

Steve does his absolute best to help his friends throughout this season, constantly putting his life on the line to further their goals. Much to fans’ dismay, Steve comes within inches of death on several occasions over the latest batch of episodes, but never wavers in his determination, even going so far as to confront Vecna ​​face-to-face alongside Nancy and Robin.

Max Mayfield

Max Mayfield outside looking curious

Sadie Sink returns as Max Mayfield, who is still reeling from her stepbrother Billy’s death in season 3. Enveloped with guilt, Max finds herself as Vecna’s latest target, eventually becoming the last victim necessary to open the gate from Hawkins to the Upside Down. This then leads to Max and her friends working diligently to keep Vecna ​​from adding her to his expanding list of victims.

Max is a true standout in Stranger Things 4, cementing her place as one of the most courageous and unshakeable members of the group. She is willing to sacrifice herself as bait in order to give the others a chance to kill Vecna, and ultimately pays a dire price for her heroism. Fans will have to wait for the show’s fifth and final season to see if Max ever awakes from her coma or dies for her heroic deeds.


Eleven in Stranger Things Season 4

Millie Bobby Brown once again portrays Eleven, the one hero powerful enough to confront Vecna. Beginning this year’s journey in California with the Byers family, Eleven eventually teams up with Dr. Brenner and Dr. Owens to help restore her powers and confront the rising evil that threatens to destroy Hawkins–and the world.

Over the course of these nine episodes, Eleven takes further steps to become the world’s most powerful superhuman. As the only one capable of standing against Vecna, she confronts the monster on several occasions, eventually besting him in the finale. Though she still has a long way to go in honing her powers, Eleven is still a formidable force to be reckoned with, as well as the team’s most valuable asset.

NEXT: 10 Plot Twists That Everybody Saw Coming In Stranger Things

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