Watch: 'Stranger Things' Actor Noah Schnapp Comes Out on TikTok

by Kilian Melloy

EDGE Staff Reporter

Friday January 6, 2023
Originally published on January 6, 2023

Noah Schnapp
Noah Schnapp  (Source:Evan Agostini / Invision / Associated Press)

After last summer's confirmation about fans' suspicion that Will on "Stranger Things" is gay, actor Noah Schnapp has followed his character out of the closet.

"The 18-year-old made the announcement Thursday on TikTok with a video of himself and text that reads, 'When I finally told my friends and family I was gay after being scared in the closet for 18 years and all they said was 'we know,'" TMZ reported.

The text accompanied a video in which Schnapp lip-synched "to an audio clip from a different TikTok of someone saying, 'You know what it never was? That serious. It was never that serious. Quite frankly, will never be that serious,'" Variety detailed.

@noahschnapp I guess I'm more similar to will than I thought

♬ original sound - princessazula0

Schnapp captioned the post "I guess I'm more similar to will than I thought."

Like Schnapp's friends and family, fans of the Netflix supernatural horror series also knew long before now — about Will at least, who, since Season 1 of the show, has pinged viewers' gaydar. The show's writers planted those early seeds on purpose and followed up by "intentionally pulling that out over the past few seasons," Schnapp said last July.

"From the start, it seemed clear that Will is gay and terrified of coming out," Variety noted in the wake of Season 4's concluding episodes, going on to recall that as late as the middle of the season Schnapp seemed determined to avoid giving any definitive answers about Will's orientation. "Schnapp said instead that Will's sexuality was 'up to the audience's interpretation,'" Variety recounted.

But the speculation about the character came to an end when those long-game story threads tied up. "I mean," Schnapp told Variety, "it's pretty clear this season that Will has feelings for Mike." Will even told Mike about his feelings — sort of — and, in a scene that the writers reportedly created at the last minute, Will's older brother reassured him in the same episode that him being gay is okay.

"I think for Season 4, it was just me playing this character who loves his best friend but struggles with knowing if he'll be accepted or not, and feeling like a mistake and like he doesn't belong," Schnapp said at the time. "Will has never really found anywhere to fit in. I think that's why so many people come up to me and tell me that they love Will and they resonate with him so much, because it's such a real character."

And fans in the real world — or on social media, anyway — flocked to express their appreciation and admiration for Schnapp and his coming out.

There were also plenty of comments along the lines of Noah's friends and family's "We know" response.

The show is a massive global hit, and has been green-lit for a fifth and final season. There's no word yet on when the show will return, or what things will look like for Will and Mike when it does.

Kilian Melloy serves as EDGE Media Network's Associate Arts Editor and Staff Contributor. His professional memberships include the National Lesbian & Gay Journalists Association, the Boston Online Film Critics Association, The Gay and Lesbian Entertainment Critics Association, and the Boston Theater Critics Association's Elliot Norton Awards Committee.