Everything to Know About 'Stranger Things' Season 4 Villain, Vecna

Here's everything to know about the Stranger Things season 4 villain, including its origin story, powers and more

Jamie Campbell Bower stars as Vecna in 'Stranger Things' season 4.
Photo: getty; netflix

This post contains spoilers for Stranger Things.

There's a new Big Bad on Stranger Things.

After defeating monstrous villains such as Demogorgons and the Mind Flayer, season 4 of the Netflix series shows Eleven, Max, Dustin and their pals facing off against the scariest villain yet: Vecna.

Though he's initially described as a powerful wizard, his character is later revealed to have even deeper connections to Hawkins and Eleven as the season progresses.

Playing this season's primary villain is none other than Jamie Campbell Bower, who has built up his supernatural/horror bona fides with previous roles in Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street, The Twilight Saga, Harry Potter and The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones.

In addition to his acting career, the 33-year-old London native has also made a name for himself as a singer for the band Counterfeit.

Netflix previously announced Bower's Stranger Things role as a character named Peter Ballard so as to not spoil his character's big reveal at the end of season 4, part 1.

"I have no idea where the name Peter Ballard came from," he told Entertainment Weekly. "I can only apologize to fans of the show for being part of such a massive red herring. I remember seeing it and being like, 'Okay, guys. Cheers! That's going to be a tough one if anybody asks me, but I'll just go with the party line.'"

Ahead of season 4, part 2, here's everything to know about the mysterious Vecna.

Vecna in Stranger. Courtesy of Netflix

What is Vecna's origin story on Stranger Things?

In episode 7, Vecna is revealed to be Henry Creel (played as a youngster by Raphael Luce), the son of Victor Creel (Robert Englund) and his wife Virginia (Tyner Rushing) shown in the 1950s flashbacks. As he began to show supernatural abilities, his family moved to a new home in Hawkins, Indiana, to give him a fresh start.

After discovering a nest of black widows in their home, Henry became increasingly fascinated with the creatures and began to hate human civilization. He later gained the ability of telekinesis, which he used to torment his family, leading his father to believe their house was haunted.

His resentment for his family eventually led Henry to kill his mother and sister and frame his father for their murders. Since Henry didn't have a full grasp of his powers at the time, he fell into a coma only to wake up under the care of Dr. Martin Brenner (Matthew Modine).

How does Vecna relate to Eleven on Stranger Things?

Like Eleven (Millie Bobby Brown), Vecna — then still in human form as young Henry — was a test subject at Hawkins National Laboratory; in fact, he was the very first test subject, judging from his "001" wrist tattoo. Though Brenner was initially fascinated by Henry's abilities, he also wanted to control him, so he put a device in his neck to suppress his powers. Henry was given the alias Peter Ballard and put to work as an orderly the children in the lab's Rainbow Room.

During Eleven's time at Hawkins National Laboratory, she developed a camaraderie with Campbell-Bower's adult Henry after he offered her advice about her powers. He eventually manipulated Eleven into removing the device from his neck, allowing him to murder almost everyone at Hawkins National Laboratory.

Terrified, a young Eleven fought him off and used her powers to send him to the Upside Down, thus beginning his journey as Vecna.

Stranger Things Season 3 Netflix

What are Vecna's powers on Stranger Things?

In addition to telekinesis, Vecna is shown to have telepathic powers as he enters into people's thoughts and attacks them remotely from the Upside Down. He is shown to target people with trauma as he haunts them with their own dark thoughts. Though it's not entirely clear what Vecna's weakness is, Max (Sadie Sink) is able to escape his possession by playing her favorite song, "Running Up That Hill" by Kate Bush. Additionally, as Vecna kills his victims in the real world, he is able to open portals to the Upside Down.

Will Vecna be in Stranger Things season 5?

Though nothing has been confirmed yet, Bower did hint at his possible return in season 5 during an interview with Entertainment Weekly.

When asked if Vecna will be featured in season 5, he teased, "I have had conversations about where the show goes in season 5. I couldn't possibly give any spoilers or tell you anything at all, but I know a bit."

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The first seven episodes of Stranger Things season 4 are available to stream on Netflix now; episodes 8 and 9 are slated to drop on July 1.

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