We’re never going to forgive the Duffer Brothers for this.
Stranger Things Season 4 Episode 9 Recaps are discussed in this article. If you thought the last episode, “Papa,” was tense, you might want to sit down for this two-and-a-half-hour long finale of Stranger Things Season 4, which is titled “The Piggyback.” It’s an epic conclusion to the season, and it’s here. Let’s not waste any time and get straight to that conclusion; there is a lot to discuss here.
Stranger Things Season 4 Episode 9 Recaps
The protagonists, along with Yuri, start the episode in Russia, where they are getting ready for what they believe would be a successful return to the United States. Inside the safehouse, the much-anticipated meeting between Joyce (Winona Ryder) and Hop (David Harbour) finally takes place. Joyce brings up the fact that they still need to go on their date at Enzo’s, and Hopper admits that he has been daydreaming about his double order of breadsticks, lasagna, and delicious “Cheeanti.” Joyce then asks him whether he has been dreaming of anything else, and then the two of them have a kiss for the first time.
However, it is not long before they are halted in their conversation by the phone call from the United States that they have been anticipating. Ellen, the right-hand agent of Dr. Owens (Paul Reiser), played by Paris Benjamin, is the one who tells Hop that the Doc is “indisposed” and that El (Millie Bobby Brown) and Joyce’s kids “gone off to fight some evil in Hawkins.” Joyce has an idea: the particles they saw in the detention center are all connected in some way, forming a hive mind. If they are able to infiltrate the facility undetected and destroy the particles, there is a chance that they will cause the hive mind sufficient harm to give the children an advantage.
While Hopper, Joyce, and Murray (Brett Gelman) make their way to the prison, Antonov (Tom Wlaschiha) remains behind to make sure that Yuri (Nikola Djuricko) launches Katinka no matter what. When they reach the prison, they find that the demodogs and the shadow particles have escaped from the tanks, and all of the guards have been killed. In addition, the demodogs have taken over the prison. They find out from a guard who is only just hanging on to a life that the particles were ingested by the demodogs, which are now spreading havoc throughout the prison.
Hopper devises a cunning but perilous strategy, which is to draw the monsters down into the pit, start a fire from above, and pray like hell that this provides El and the kids an advantage. He decides to use himself as bait and go after one demodog that he spots eating the flesh of a dead Soviet guard when it is alone in the laundry area. Hopper uses a whistle to grab the animal’s attention before beginning to drag it down the hallway as the demodog follows closely behind him. The strategy is now off to a successful (although stressful) start as a result of this development.
Let’s shift our focus to El and the rest of the Lenora crew, who has also devised a plan to shield Max (Sadie Sink) and the rest of the Hawkins crew from harm while keeping a safe distance. Max will have him in her head as she is attacked by Vecna, played by Jamie Campbell Bower. Naturally, El possesses the same power as before and has experience penetrating brains. Therefore, she will employ the tactic of piggybacking: after entering Max’s head, Max will transport her to Vecna, where she will engage in some battles of the mind with Vecna.
Once more, Argyle, played by Eduardo Franco, and the dedication he has shown to his art come in helpful. In order to construct El’s sensory deprivation tank, he is aware of the exact location, which is Surfer Boys Pizza, where they can acquire an improvised tub and 600 pounds of salt. They are now making history as they engage in what is believed to be the first-ever mental battle to take place inside of a pizza dough freezer.
After all of that, we have finally arrived in Hawkins, which is where the war is set to start. The strategy is reviewed one more time by Nancy (Natalia Dyer), Robin (Maya Hawke), Steve (Joe Keery), Dustin (Gaten Matarazzo), and Eddie (Joseph Quinn).
The first step is for them to arrive at the Upside Down, where Erica (Priah Ferguson) will give Max and Lucas (Caleb McLaughlin) a signal when it is time for them to take their positions. In the second phase, Max will trick Vecna into entering his trance in the creel family home’s attic by using a lure. In the third phase, Dustin and Eddie will distract the bats so that they may escape.
In the fourth phase, Nancy, Robin, and Steve enter Vecna’s lair once the bats have been cleared out and… flambé. After Max, Lucas, and Erica have arrived at the Creel house, Steve’s gang makes their way into the Upside Down by climbing the improvised bedsheet rope that is installed in Eddie’s trailer. Dustin and Eddie begin fastening the trailer in an effort to make it as bat-proof as is reasonably possible while appearing simultaneously fierce and adorable in the makeshift war gear that they are wearing. At the very same moment, Steve, Nancy, and Robin all set out in the direction of the Creel residence.
At the same time, our California team is getting ready for war back at Surfer Boys Pizza. Will (Noah Schnapp) and Jonathan (Charlie Heaton) are in the process of putting the finishing touches on El’s salty pizza dough fridge when they have a heart-to-heart conversation that has been long overdue.
Will’s anguish and yearning can be seen written all over his face as he watches Mike (Finn Wolfhard) and El smiling together, as witnessed by Jonathan. Will receive an apology from Jonathan for the past years’ worth of stoned and distant behavior on Jonathan’s part. Jonathan tells Will that he doesn’t want him to forget that he’ll always be there for him because he loves him, “and there is nothing in this world, absolutely nothing in this world that can change that.” Jonathan is adamant that he Will not forget this.
Back in Hawkins, Steve, Robin, and Nancy are making their way through the woods while attempting to prevent triggering the hive mind by stepping on any of the slithery vines. Because Robin is scared that they may get lost, she dashes ahead, leaving Steve and Nancy alone. This, of course, is a recipe for feelings to develop between the two of them. That fantasy Steve shared with her in which he had six teeny-tiny nuggets?
Steve affirms that everything was accurate, but the person left out the most crucial detail, which is that Nancy was present. She has never been absent from the scene. Nancy glances at him (again, with barely disguised heart eyes), but before she can say anything, Robin comes running back and says that they aren’t lost — the Creel house is just up ahead. Before she can say anything else, Nancy stares at him (again, with barely disguised hearty eyes).
During this time, Lucas, Max, and Erica had prepared themselves for the first phase. When a man out walking his dog stops to take a closer look at Erica, she quickly dashes outside to the decrepit jungle gym so that she may inform Nancy, Steve, and Robin.
Everyone in the room should let out a collective groan since it’s the gentleman from the Hawkins town meeting that started the manhunt for the Hellfire club in the town. He then gives information to Jason (Mason Dye), the character who causes the most trouble during Season 4, by informing him and his thugs that he discovered a Hellfire club member at the murder house. Inside the home, Lucas and Max are patiently awaiting the signal that will allow them to advance to Phase 2. When Lucas hesitantly shoots his shot, he writes “Movies Friday?” on the notepad they are using to communicate with one another.
Following a minute of focused doodling, Max raises her notepad to reveal a stick figure depiction of the two of them sharing popcorn while holding hands in a cinema. Unfortunately, the adorableness is only fleeting: From the outside, Erica flashes her flashlight at them to let them know it’s time to go on to Phase 2: Max is going to try and bait Vecna.
The utilization of the lanterns by Max and Lucas in order to track down Vecna indicates that it is now time to part ways with Kate Bush. Even when Max cries “hey, asshole!” Vecna does not show any signs of biting for some unknown reason. Therefore, Max resorts to the most extreme measures. She takes a seat in front of the lamp and offers Vecna her misery, which is just what he was looking for.
She admits to him that he was correct; she did wish for Billy (Dacre Montgomery) to pass away, and she is unable to continue living with the guilt that she feels. She will say things such as, “I just want you to take me away,” and “I just want you to make me disappear.” The expression of shock on Lucas’ face prompts the question, “Is all of that true?”
He says this as his eyes begin to cloud over and his voice begins to blend with Vecna’s warped voice. “Perhaps it’s for the best that he takes you,” he says. “I’m delighted that you’ll be the one to do it. You are the one who will be selected. It’s number four. The ultimate offering to God. You are going to be the one who brings the world to its knees.” Now is the time to advance to Phase 3, which will consist of the most metal concert ever held anywhere in the world’s history.
After Dustin turns up the amplifier atop Eddie’s trailer in the Upside Down, Eddie tells Chrissy, “This one’s for you.” It’s finally here: the moment we’ve all been waiting for, in which Eddie performs a cover of “Master of Puppets” by Metallica in order to divert the bandits’ attention away from the Creel house. And the distraction definitely works: the demobats come flying like actual bats out of hell and swarm the trailer, which leaves Steve, Nancy, and Robin free to enter the Creel house and make their way to the attic where Vecna is hanging defenseless as he attacks Max.
Max is able to conceal herself by retreating into her most joyful memory, which involves the Snow Ball. Now we’re getting to the point when everything will really start to blow out… rather literally. Max can only take refuge for a limited amount of time in her joyful memories.
As the gym begins to darken, the balloons within begin to burst, releasing blood into the surrounding area. She is able to make out Vecna’s voice: “You thought you could get one over on me, did you? You believed that your friends might prevent me from doing something? I am aware of them. I saw your pals. To the same degree that I can see you. I can sense that they are passing away. Max, the time has come.”
It should come as no surprise that Vecna is not the type of guy to engage in bluffing. Steve, Nancy, and Robin are currently unable to breathe because the slithery tentacle vines in the Creel House in the Upside Down have wrapped themselves around them and are suffocating them.
In Russia, Hop’s situation appears to be deteriorating as the demodog that has been following him tackles him to the ground and Hopper attempts to hold the growling lips of the hound shut while it is inches away from his face. The long-awaited arrival of Jason and the rest of his scumbag friends has finally been recorded at the Creel residence.
Because Jason is so intent on making this episode even tenser than it already is, Lucas feels compelled to defend himself against Jason’s attacks.Eddie and Dustin, who have taken sanctuary inside the trailer while the demobats swarm outside, are in for a rough ride as well, as things do not appear to be going in their favor at all. They have carried out their responsibilities, if perhaps to an excessive degree.
Eddie and Dustin struggle mightily with their spears to ward off the bats as they emerge from the vents where they had been hiding. Dustin has made the call: there are far too many of them, and it is time to get the heck out of there. After regaining access to the actual world via the bedsheet rope, he yells for Eddie to come back down. Eddie attempts to get hold of the rope but is unsuccessful.
He released his grip and slit the bedsheet while maintaining a resolute expression on his face. He is confronted by Dustin, who yells at him, “What are you doing?!!” (Steve didn’t say anything about being a hero, Eddie!) Eddie exclaims, “Buying more time,” as he slings his spear over his shoulder and grabs the big trash can lid that doubles as a shield. Eddie scrambles out of the house and races to his bicycle, where he begins to pedal frantically in an attempt to escape the bats who are around him. They quickly knock him off his bike and begin to swarm him, digging their teeth into his chest. Shortly after that, they kill him.
Once again within Max’s thoughts, Vecna materializes in the gymnasium and uses his abilities to bind Max to the wall. He raises his eerie hand, which resembles a claw, and is about to perform the thing when (cue victorious music) El stands before him! She is able to gain the upper hand for approximately five seconds before Vecna pushes her back into the world of his red soup mind and pins her to the unattached door of the Creel house with tentacle vines. He prepares himself for his second effort while carrying Max while he is still unconscious.
El tries to convince Henry that Papa was the evil one, not him and that Henry is only the way he is because of Papa’s influence. It has been asserted by Vecna, Henry, and One that Papa was nothing more than an “ordinary, average man” who “sought greatness in others” much like them. When El sent him flying through the Upside Down, she was the one who ultimately shaped him into what he is now.
It is now time for the Big Explanation, so let’s get started. In their conversation, Vecna says to El, “At first, I thought you had sent me to my death.” Where purgatory is. But I was completely wrong. I was visiting a new location.” We get a glimpse of the Upside Down before El tossed Henry through the gate for the first time, and it looks significantly different from the Upside Down that we are familiar with now.
However, there are some demodogs and demogorgons off in the distance, the area is otherwise quite desolate. Henry says, “I chose to pursue a career in exploration.” An adventurer who ventures into a place untouched by human activity… And then one day, I came across the most incredible thing that could possibly exist.
Something, that would make all the difference in the world.” Henry discovered “something” in the sky that looked like particles of shadow that were whirling frantically. He says, “I saw a way to realize my potential.” [Citation needed] to escape the confines of my physical form. To mature into the murderer I was destined to be from birth.” The next thing we see, Henry stretches out his hand and begins to mold the shadows into what is now known as the Mind Flayer. It would appear that Vecna/Henry/One was our Chief Foe the whole time. Yes, you read that correctly.
Vecna explains to her that there is nothing further she can do at this point; Hawkins will fall, and he is going to transform “this stupid, shattered world” into something “beautiful.” Vecna informs her that she has no choice but to accept this. Once more, Max propels himself upward into the air. El is flailing her arms and legs within Max’s head as she tries to fight back, and she is currently in the pizza shop. Mike finally does what he should have done nine episodes ago and expresses his undying love for El, in the event that she is able to hear him.
El’s resolve strengthens as a result of the power of love, and as a result, she is able to break free and knock Vecna/Henry/One away from Max. At the same time, in Russia, Hop and his gang have been successful in enticing the monsters to the pit, and Murray begins to shower fire down from above. Suddenly, Vecna lets out a painful scream, the tentacle vines free Steve and the others, and the demons that were attacking Eddie fall to the ground. Steve, Nancy, and Robin have come to the conclusion that this is their opportunity: it is time to move on to Phase 4, flambé.
When El tells Vecna that, he is still holding her back in some way “This is just the beginning of things to come. The first step towards completion. You cannot win now, even if you tried.” In response, she says, “No. You have,” in addition to a remix that is an amazing banger of “Running Up That Hill.” “Cut to the beginning of the Stranger Things theme music as it begins to play.
In Russia, Hopper engages in combat with the Demogorgon, who, unlike the others, refused to be destroyed by Murray’s fires, and Hopper ultimately succeeds in decapitating him by severing his head cleanly off with a sword. Vecna is set ablaze by Steve, Nancy, and Robin in the attic of the Creel house. As he is engulfed in flames, Vecna escapes out a window and into the yard below. For a little instant, it appears as though they had won the match.
You didn’t seriously believe that the Duffer Brothers would let us off the hook so simply, did you? Does everyone make it out alive? We all know better than that.
In the Upside Down, Dustin finally makes it to Eddie, who is lying on the ground and bleeding heavily from his injuries sustained at the hands of the Demobbers. Eddie cracks a grin and asks, “You do realize that I didn’t flee this time, right? You are going to be responsible for taking care of those young lambs for me, okay? Because I really am going to complete my degree. I believe this is going to be my year, Henderson. I believe that this is going to be my year. I love you, man.” Eddie Munson, a fan of heavy metal, Dungeons & Dragons, and Dustin Henderson, has passed away at this time.
And this, ladies and gentlemen, leads us to Max. It seems that El was not as quick as he thought he was because Vecna was able to free Max when El hurled him backward, but she was too late. The bones in Max’s limbs have already begun to crack, and she has already begun to experience bleeding in her eyes.
The fourth bell rings, and just like in Vecna’s vision, Hawkins begins to fall apart, so destroying the barrier that formerly separated the real world and the Upside Down. Max, who is unable to see or move, is sobbing in Lucas’s arms, telling him that she doesn’t want to die and that she isn’t ready, while El screams and clings to her in her “darkness world.” Lucas is comforting Max. El struggles to let go of her hold on Max as she draws her final breath. She closes her eyes as she extends her hand to Max’s chest and rests it there over his heart. The image on the screen gradually turns black.
After two days, Hawkins is a complete and utter breakdown. According to the claims in the media, the events were an earthquake of magnitude 7.4, described as “a natural tragedy of unprecedented proportions.” The current death toll stands at 22, but there are still so many people missing and injured that it is almost certain to rise.
Even though Eddie Munson is commonly believed to be dead, he is still the main antagonist of the Hawkins universe and the head of the Hellfire cult. Dustin has a heartbreaking conversation with Eddie’s uncle (Joel Stoffer), letting him know that Eddie died a hero who fought for a town that hated him, while Steve, Robin, and Dustin are helping the town recover by volunteering at the high school. This conversation takes place while the town is trying to get back on its feet.
At the peanut butter and jelly table, Robin has a chance encounter with Vickie, who is freshly single and looking for a relationship. It appears as if Robin may soon find love with Vickie. The Hawkins crew and the Lenora gang are able to get back together after a long time apart.
The mood is generally lighthearted, but it’s obvious that Nancy and Jonathan’s relationship isn’t out of the woods yet, so that will probably be a central conflict in the upcoming season (I hear the shipper wars in the distance). Will, El, and Mike pay a visit to Max in the hospital, where Lucas is currently spending his time reading to her. It was discovered that Max is still alive, but she is currently in a coma, and her medical professionals are unsure whether or not she will ever come out of it. According to Lucas, she had been clinically declared dead for a whole minute before being restored back to life by some supernatural event (cough cough, El).
El closes her eyes as she reaches out and lightly touches Max’s hand while he is lying on the hospital bed. She then enters what she refers to as her “darkness realm.” She yells for Max, but what she discovers is possibly even more unsettling than the fact that Max is dead: nothing. There is absolutely no sign of Max anywhere you look. There is nothing but complete obscurity.
On the brighter side, the happy reunion between Hopper and El in their previous cabin is finally here after a long season of anticipation on our part. After the trauma that the Duffer brothers inflicted on us for the previous two hours, they compare their shaved heads (also known as “Bitchin'”), hug each other, and cry. During this brief moment, everything seems to be going according to plan in the world. On the outside, Joyce is seen reuniting with El and her two sons, while Mike and Hopper can be seen laughing and hugging. But the calm will only hold for a brief period of time, of course.
Cue the ominous background score! Will reaches up and feels the base of his neck before looking upward. The sky is getting darker as ash-like particles start to fall from sky. The group makes their way through the woods to an open field, where they observe that the grass has begun to take on a bluish-gray hue and that the surrounding vegetation has begun to shrivel up and die. Red lightning may be seen crackling across the sky in the distance. The end is only getting started.
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