Major spoilers follow the end of the fourth season of Stranger Things.
Stranger Things star Sadie Sink doesn’t know if her character – Max Mayfield – will return for the series’ fifth and final season.
Talking to Limit (Opens in a new tab)Sink confirmed that she was not told whether Max lived or died after her fateful encounter with Vecna in the final episode of the fourth season of Stranger Things. The character was last seen in a medical coma at Hawkins Hospital after a Vecna attack that effectively killed Max for a full minute.
However, Eleven used her powers to miraculously revive Max, although it is unclear whether Max will recover from her injuries – or if she is alive. Before the credits even begin at the end of Season 4, Eleven enters the void to try to locate Max, but is unable to. It is possible, then, for Max to be emotional and survive only on a life support machine. And as revealed by Sink, she feels just as wronged about her character’s fate as a fan of the popular Netflix show.
Asked if the Duffer Brothers, the creators of Stranger Things, had confirmed if Max would return for its fifth and final season, Sink said, “They’ve been very secretive about season five in general. We had a conversation. We had a conversation. He called me before we I’m reading episode nine because in the script it literally says that Max is dying.So they called me ahead and were like, “Just warn you, this is there, so you’re not really shocked.”
“I have no idea what’s coming in Five and what it’s like. Max’s story is up in the air, because she’s clearly in a coma and Eleven can’t find her in the void. So who knows where she is and what condition she is in.”
Since Stranger Things Season 4, Volume 2 came out on Netflix on July 1, fans have been desperate to know if Max dies in Episode 9. After the release of Volume 2, “Max’s death in Stranger Things 4” was one of the most talked about terms. Search it on Google – The query has only gone down in Google Trends in the last 24 hours. Other notable questions also included who died in the fight against Vecna, and you can read the Season 4 concluding commentary on Volume Two to learn more.
For more Stranger Things content, check out why the hit Netflix series isn’t the most popular show of the year yet. Alternatively, watch the musical mix Stranger Things that works so well as the actual Broadway show.
Analysis: Will Max survive her ordeal and appear in Season 5?
It would be a shocking entry point for Stranger Things season five if Max didn’t survive. After all, the Duffer brothers suggested that the show’s final season would feature a major time jump (per TVLine (Opens in a new tab)), so we should expect a year or two to pass before we reunite with Eleven and company.
It is possible, then, that the Hawkins Hospital doctors could have told our heroes there was nothing they could do for Max, and thus turned off her life support. How emotional would it be if Season 5 began with her funeral? It’ll be a huge punch for fans to hope it works, plus it’ll give the likes of Eleven and Lucas something more to fight for before their final showdown with Upside Down, Vecna and Mind Flayer/The Shadow.
Alternatively, season five could begin with Max in a coma and the gang battling to maintain her life support systems despite hospital staff admitting there’s little they can do for her. Given her fan-favorite status, and the significant role Max has played in the series so far, this would be the most likely scenario out of the two we’ve suggested.
If the Duffer brothers choose the last of these options, they are allowed to use Max in a manner similar to Will. As the Season 4 finale revealed, Will still has a connection to the Upside Down from earlier in the series. If Max awakens from her coma, she may develop a connection to the Upside Down (or perhaps Vecna specifically if she’s the only survivor from one of his attacks) that will be vital in helping Eleven and the company defeat the hostile forces on the show once and for all.
It will be some time before we find what we have for sure. In her conversation with Deadline, Sink confirmed that she doesn’t know when filming will begin on Season 5 of Stranger Things, before saying that she doesn’t think the Duffer brothers will be “in a rush” to script it. So the answers surrounding Max’s fate will continue to be awaited for some time.