When the Stranger Things Season 2 trailer dropped during the Super Bowl, most of us completely lost our minds over all the new footage — throwbacks to Ghostbusters and Close Encounters, Eleven's return and one hulking new monster that makes the Demogorgon look pretty insignificant. It seems as though something (or someone) has ripped apart the dimensions even further, and the Upside Down is officially making its way to Hawkins.
The trailer has given us plenty to ponder, and mainly revolves around Will. However, there is one blink-and-you'll-miss moment that has given us the most to think about — a fleeting glimpse at a CCTV monitor which, when you pause to look, features Will dressed in a hospital gown talking to a man in a white coat.
So, how do we know it's Will in the chair, and not Eleven? Well for one, it looks just like Will, and it's likely the woman sitting next to him is Joyce (Winona Ryder) — although her face is obscured. This also seems to be the only time Winona is featured in the trailer.
Is Will With Brenner at the Hawkins National Laboratory?
The first question we have is: is Will is at the Hawkins National Laboratory? From this image, it would certainly seem so. It also looks like Will is in the clutches of the sinister government agency that are entirely responsible for the events of Season 1; experimenting on Eleven, giving her powers and ripping a hole in the fabric of reality, summoning the Demogorgon. Will is lying in a medical chair, dressed in a similar way to Eleven during the first half of Season 1 — in a hospital gown with some kind of contraption attached to her head to monitor data from the agency's experiments. Thus far, all signs point to the agency who wreaked havoc during Stranger Things's last outing.
The fact that Joyce is there leads me to believe that Will has been struggling with horrifying visions since his return — this is indicated by the drawings and images of Will in the trailer. It also leads me to believe they went willingly, and are perhaps working alongside the sinister government agency to help stop the encroaching #UpsideDown. Alternatively, the agency may have promised to help Will in return for his insight into the other dimension — and his compliance in their experiments.
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Will is also the only person we see being monitored by the CCTV cameras (as far as we can tell), which indicates his importance. Plus, that level of security, as well as what the other screens are monitoring, further prove that this is the Hawkins National Laboratory, as opposed to a hospital, for example.
Finally, fans on Reddit have been querying whether or not the man in the white coat is Dr. Brenner (Matthew Modine), who was last seen being mauled by the #Demogorgon, but was not confirmed to be dead. It's been speculated for a while now whether or not he would return. The Duffer Bros. offered no help, telling IGN:
“I would say that if we were going to kill Brenner… as an audience member watching the show, if that was his death, that would be very unsatisfying to me – when the monster jumps on him and we cut away… He would deserve much more than that as an ending. So yes, there’s a possibility of seeing him again.”
So is the man in the white coat Dr. Brenner? It doesn't look much like him, but that doesn't mean Brenner won't return for Season 2 at all.
Does Will Have Powers?
If we cast our minds back to the end of Season 1, Will was rescued from the Upside Down, but seemed to be experiencing some unpleasant side effects. After flashing in and out of the Upside Down and throwing up a couple of slugs, it looked like this experience had effected him tremendously. Remember that Season 2 opens a whole year after the events of Season 1, which means Will has been dealing with this for some time now.
It's heavily hinted in the trailer that Will is the one responsible for the drawings of the creature we see at the end — this is indicated in the final shot when we see the back of Will's head, opening the door onto the giant arachnid. We know that Will can see into other dimensions, so perhaps he is seeing an entirely different dimension to that of the Demogorgon. While Eleven had to use sensory deprivation to pass through worlds, Will only need open his eyes.
However, thanks to the #StrangerThings Twitter page, it looks like Will's demons won't be staying put in their dimensions — perhaps his ability to move between them creates a bridge for the Demogorgon 2.0 to cross. Sunday's red clouds look eerily similar to the blazing red sky in the trailer.
It is also plausible that Will might be the one to find Eleven, who is seemingly still trapped in the Upside Down.
Even though the trailer was only 30 or so seconds long, it gave us a huge amount of information. If that really is Will in the chair, it raises a lot of questions about where, why and how he got there — and indicates that he may take Eleven's place as the central mystery of Season 2. Stranger Things returns to #Netflix on Halloween, so for now we just have to wait and speculate.