Stranger Things season four has been teased by the creators and the stars of the Netflix show who have been openly discussing the direction the series could go in. One key point of contention has been the future of Chief Hopper (played by David Harbour) after his tragic ending in series three. But one theory suggests he could still be alive in the Upside Down – here’s what you need to know.
Did Hopper go through Upside Down in time travel twist?
WARNING: This article contains spoilers for Stranger Things season 3.
The finale of Stranger Things season three saw the whole band of Hawkins characters come together to defeat the Mindflayer.
Chief Hopper’s responsibility in the final battle was to close the gate to the Upside Down once and for all.
The Battle for Starcourt saw Hooper face Russian hitman Grigori (Andrey Ivchenko) at the machine that the Russians built to reopen the gate to the Upside Down.
The fierce encounter ends with Hopper killing Grigori by shoving him into the machine but trapping himself in the room as a result.
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This means that Joyce Byers (Winona Ryder) is forced to trigger an explosion to close the gate with Hopper still in the room.
As the show flashes forward, it becomes clear that Hopper is dead as we see Eleven (Millie Bobby Brown) mourning him and the Byers preparing to move away from Hawkins.
There was a glint of hope that Hopper might not be completely gone, however, as the post credits scene for the show revealed Russians discussing “The American.”
There has been much discussion as to which character this could be with everyone from Mayor Larry Kline (Cary Elwes) to Dr Brenner (Matthew Modine) being labelled as potential options.
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However, many are hoping it will in fact be Hopper who has found a way to survive.
One theory is Hopper did not die in the explosion but was instead pulled into the gate of the Upside Down.
As fans of the show know, people have been trapped in the Upside Down unable to communicate with the real world before, ever since Will Byers (Noah Schnapp) went missing in series one.
The popular fan theory that Hopper could be in the Upside Down comes from Reddit user Stangerthingsideas.
The user posted: “My suspicion is he didn’t die and he hopped into the Upside Down entrance because he has been in there before and knows how to survive. They also never showed his dead body or him disintegrating so he went in there.”
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Viewers have also pointed out that just before the explosion happens, Hopper looks back at the gate as if considering it.
Hopper was also one of the few people to enter the Upside Down and come back out in series one so he will know it is possible to survive in it.
Throughout the sci-fi show, Eleven has been able to be connect to the Upside Down but given that she has lost her powers at the end of series three, she won’t be able to do this to see if Hopper is still alive.
Therefore, this all points to the fact Hopper could still be alive in the Upside Down, waiting for someone to find him.
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Actor Harbour told Entertainment Weekly he is hopeful that Hopper is still alive and kicking.
He said: “I mean that, of course, is my hope too. It seems pretty crazy though.
“You know, that machine went off and blew up and Hopper seemed to be trapped there. He did glance around a little bit, but he seemed to be trapped and the machine exploded.”
Fans will just have to wait and see if any more information is released about the twist.
Stranger Things series 3 is now available to stream on Netflix.
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