In the world of Stranger Things, big brothers are portrayed as a mix between little kids’ heroes and the bane of their existences. While Jonathan Byers was a quiet but steady presence in Will’s life, Billy Hargrove’s arrival in Hawkins introduced a completely different kind of sibling bond. You may just remember him as a relentless bully who was way too concerned with what his stepsister was up to, but what happened to Billy on Stranger Things Season 2? The teenager was a loner for most of the season, but his situation may change in the upcoming Season 3.
Billy (Dacre Montgomery) arrived in town at the beginning of Season 2 with his father, stepmother, and stepsister Max (Sadie Sink). Annoyed about moving to Indiana from California, Billy was responsible for driving Max to school and often taking her to the arcade, where Mike (Finn Wolfhard), Will (Noah Schnapp), Lucas (Caleb McLaughlin), and Dustin (Gaten Matarazzo) witnessed her strong gaming skills. Billy wasn’t fond of Max befriending the boys and felt particularly mistrusting of Lucas, who began falling for Max.
On Halloween, he even took an especially aggressive approach to teasing Max, prodding at her for beginning to enjoy Hawkins. When she implied as they drove home that their family’s move was his fault, Billy retaliated by speeding toward the boys ahead. Max managed to grab control of the wheel and avoid a collision. This wasn’t exactly your typical brother-sister disagreement.
Meanwhile, at the high school, Billy had developed a reputation as a ladies’ man. As his popularity grew, he acted antagonistically toward Steve Harrington (Joe Keery) and fueled the jock’s doubts about his weakening relationship with Nancy Wheeler (Natalia Dyer).
Billy’s tough exterior finally cracked after Max snuck out to be with Lucas and his parents confronted him about where she was. Clueless about her whereabouts, Billy shared that he didn’t see Max as family, which prompted his father to shove him against the wall and scold him. He sent Billy to look for Max, but a shot of a tearful Billy confirmed that his dad’s harsh words definitely affected him.
That emotional exchange inspired Billy to look for the kids while displaying especially manic vibes. He found the group at the Byers’ house figuring out how to help Eleven (Millie Bobby Brown) close the gate to the Upside Down, but babysitter Steve intervened and began fighting Billy. Billy knocked him unconscious, which encouraged Max to step in and sedate her stepbrother with drugs from the Hawkins lab. As he grew dopier, she made him promise that he would leave her and her friends alone.
Season 2 closed with Billy’s bullying seemingly resolved, but the first few looks at the Netflix drama’s third season imply that Billy plays a major role in the latest mysterious happenings of Hawkins. Netflix released an entire scene showing lifeguard Billy captivating the moms at the community pool, while the season’s final trailer cuts to a stoic-looking Billy as Will wonders if the Demogorgon is still in Hawkins and living within a new host. Other than this moment, Billy doesn’t appear in the latest trailer, which could definitely be a significant clue about his role in the season. Is Billy even more of a baddie this time around?
Season 3 of Stranger Things premieres on Thursday, July 4, on Netflix.
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