"Chapter Four: Will the Wise" is the twelfth episode of Stranger Things and the fourth episode of the second season. The episode was directed by Shawn Levy and was released with the rest of season two on October 27, 2017. 


An ailing Will opens up to Joyce – with disturbing results. While Hopper digs for the truth, Eleven unearths a surprising discovery.


Joyce drives back to the Hawkins Middle School to look for Will. There, she meets up with Dustin, Mike, Lucas, and Max, who were also searching for him. They find Will virtually catatonic in the field, while in the Upside Down the shadow monster is seeping into every one of his orifices. After Joyce makes some desperate efforts, Will eventually wakes up and she takes him back home.

Eleven returns to Hopper, who is naturally angry about Eleven's disappearance from the cabin. They argue and Hopper grounds her with no Eggos and no television indefinitely. This leads to a continually escalating fight between them until, in anger and misery, Eleven experiences a psychic tantrum, shattering all the windows of the cabin, and cries in her room.

The next day, Hopper starts to regret his actions and requests Eleven to clean up the place, saying he will then consider fixing the television before he goes out to work.

Nancy and Jonathan head off in secret to see Barb's parents.

Initially, Will is reluctant to reveal what happened. But when Joyce tells him that she found his drawing and the tape from Halloween to be similar, Will admits to having visions from the Upside Down and informs her that the shadow monster got him and he feels it inside him. Joyce cares for Will and finds that his temperature is very low. Trying to warm him up scares Will, with him saying that "he likes it cold." Meanwhile, at the park, Barb's parents are no-shows, but Nancy and Jonathan are confronted by disguised government agents.

Will confesses to Joyce and Hopper that the shadow monster left some part of itself in him which allows him to know things he never knew. Unable to verbally explain, Joyce suggests he draw it instead.

Unable to fix the television, Eleven cleans up the cabin and finds a hatch in the floor. Going down into a storage area, she finds a number of boxes including one labelled "Hawkins Lab."

At Hawkins Labs, Dr. Owens explains why he had Nancy and Jonathan detained, showing them the Gate. He tells them that it cannot be destroyed, but it can be contained. After telling them it
Dr. Sam Owens showing Jonathan & Nancy the portal

Dr. Owens shows Nancy and Jonathan the Gate

is his job to do whatever is necessary to ensure the secrecy of what happened in the lab, he lets them go.

Will draws a large number of seemingly incomprehensible scribbles, and Joyce figures out that they are all part of one large image. The completed puzzle appears to be a series of tunnels or tendrils, but Hopper works out that they are vines spreading under Hawkins. To test his theory, Hopper goes out to one of the dead pumpkin patches.

At school, Mike becomes concerned about Will and tries to call Byers' house but no one responds. So, Mike brings Dustin and Lucas to meet in the AV room and unveils to them the truth about what really happened to Will on the night of Halloween. He plans to meet him and also request Dustin and Lucas to find Dart so that they can help and save Will.

At the house, Eleven finds Terry Ives' file and tries to contact her through the Void. She manages to locate her, who is still near-catatonic and saying a series of words and phrases. When Eleven makes contact, Terry's eyes open and she says "Jane". Eleven reaches out but the connection breaks. Distraught, Eleven begins crying and she screams "Mama, Mama".

Mike goes to the Byers' house to help Will. Initially, Joyce tries to send him away, but after Mike mentions the shadow monster she is surprised and allows him to stay.

Nancy and Jonathan leave Hawkins Lab and reveal their true plan – they had planned to be captured. Everything Dr. Owens had said was recorded.
Stage 4 - 2

Dart ate Mews and turns to Dustin

At Dustin's house, he attempts to ask Dart what happened to Will but finds that the tank containing has been smashed, leaving a molted skin and trail of black slime. Dustin finds Dart eating Mews the cat, and it becomes apparent that his pet is actually a young Demogorgon.

In the pumpkin field, Hopper digs up the ground and finds a massive network of tunnels that are corrupted by the Upside Down.


Uncredited Cast



  • "This Is Radio Clash" by The Clash - After telling her mom she's staying at Stacey's overnight, Nancy heads outside to join Jonathan.
  • "Scarface (Push It To the Limit)" by Paul Engemann - Hopper starts his truck after getting a message about Joyce's many calls; Billy gives Steve advice on holding his ground on the court.
  • "The Growing" by The Haxan Cloak - Billy advises Max to stay away from Lucas; Hopper heads out into the pumpkin field and starts digging.

Original Score

  • "Looking for a Way Out"
  • "Fresh Blood"
  • "Possessed"
  • "To Be Continued"

Behind the Scenes

S02E04 Behind the Scenes

Filming Will's possession sequence

One of the notable visual-effects intensive sequences of the episode was Will's confrontation and his subsequent possession by the Shadow Monster. The storyboards for each shot between Will and the monster were created by concept artist Michael Maher Jr.[1]

The scenes were filmed on the grounds of Patrick Henry High School. For filming the sequence, visual-effects supervisor Paul Graff told that actor Noah Schnapp had to stand in the center of a circular camera track 6 feet in circumference. While the green screen was behind him, they had to rotate the camera in full circular motion to capture Noah's facial expressions. A VFX shop, Hydraulx, was responsible for digitally rendering the Shadow Monster and transforming the background into the Upside Down.[1]


View Gallery For this subject's gallery, see Will the Wise/Gallery.


  • In an interview, Charlie Heaton revealed "Will the Wise" was a major episode of the season.[2]
  • In Beyond Stranger Things, it was revealed by Shawn Levy that the argument between Hopper and Eleven where Eleven shattered the windows was actually filmed without any visual effects, with the crews blowing out all the windows on-set.
  • The title of the fourth chapter was originally assumed to be "The Palace" because the announcement trailer for season two listed this as the fourth title. However, the titles in the trailer were out of order and only meant to "provide some hint of where [they] were going in season two without giving anything away."[3] The real title was revealed along with the titles of the six first chapters on October 9, 2017. The image representing the episode was the Shadow Monster and Will's drawing of it.[4]


  1. 1.0 1.1 "Stranger Things The Official Behind-The-Scenes Companion"
  2. "EXCLUSIVE: Charlie Heaton Dishes on 'Stranger Things' Time Jump in 'Darker' Season 2: 'It's Gonna Be a Ride'" ET. November 6, 2016.
  3. "The Duffer Brothers Are Reading Your 'Stranger Things' Reddit Theories" The Hollywood Reporter. October 12, 2016.
  4. "The story continues. New chapters on October 27." Stranger Things on Twitter. October 9, 2017.
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