Although Stranger Things season 5 could bring back Enzo and Yuri, the show should leave the duo out of its final outing. Going into Stranger Things season 4, it seemed as though the last thing that the Netflix hit needed was more characters. Ever since Stranger Things season 1 introduced viewers to the five main kids, the three main teens, and the two lead adults, the show has never been reluctant about adding to its lineup.
By the end of Stranger Things season 3, viewers were left wondering what Eleven, Mike, Will, Lucas, Dustin, Max, Joyce, Hopper, Murray, Jonathan, Nancy, Steven, Robin, and Erica were up to, and that was just the main characters. However, Stranger Things season 4’s tragic Eddie plot proved that the show could still add new characters and make viewers truly care about them, something that was further reaffirmed with Enzo and Yuri. A surprisingly sweet, if cynical, Russian prison guard Enzo and his amoral pilot friend Yuri were proof that Stranger Things was able to create characters who weren’t caricatures based on their country of origin.
While Stranger Things Enzo and Yuri were likable characters who played important roles, Enzo and Yuri have nothing to do outside of Stranger Things season 4’s now-completed Russian subplot. The pair should not appear in Stranger Things season 5, now that Hopper has returned to Hawkins alive and well, as they have thus fulfilled their end of the bargain. The Siberian prison camp subplot was the most over-stretched story in Stranger Things season 4 and its predecessor, season 3’s “Russians under the mall” malarkey, was one of the show’s silliest diversions and most misjudged side quests. As such, Stranger Things season 5 must tighten up the show’s focus, which will mean no more contributions from the eminently charismatic but ultimately unnecessary Russian supporting stars.
Stranger Things Season 5 Must Forget Russia
Stranger Things season 3 made the Russians hiding out under the Starcourt Mall into the show’s least threatening and least believable villains so far. Despite all the odds, Stranger Things season 4 fixed the Russian subplot, turning the show’s Russian characters into comparatively grounded human beings and even giving the villainous prison guards a couple of unexpectedly redemptive moments. Stranger Things season 5 simply doesn’t need to mention the show’s Russian characters at all since their prisoner escaped, their Hawkins base is destroyed and, with their attempts to access the Upside-down scuppered, they have no role left to play on the show.
If Stranger Things season 5 does somehow bring Enzo, Yuri, and the Soviet military they betrayed back, this ill-advised subplot will detract attention away from Vecna, the primary villain of the final season. It is already clear that Eleven will have hands full attempting to defeat Vecna in Stranger Things season 5, meaning the show doesn’t need another supporting villain to make her problems worse. While the US military could believably still be trying to track her down after the death of Dr. Brenner, this would be a much more natural, fitting secondary antagonist in Stranger Things season 5, as the army could arrive in Hawkins at just the wrong time and inadvertently enable Vecna’s plan. However, bringing back the Russian military (via Enzo and Yuri) for this purpose would be much more far-fetched and would smack of desperation, meaning that Stranger Things season 5 needs to give these particular supporting stars a well-earned rest.