‘Fear Street’ Fan Theories Suggest Sarah Fier Isn’t Behind the Shadyside Killings

The first two installments of Netflix’s Fear Street trilogy raise many questions about the town of Shadyside and the curse that hangs over it. From what viewers know about the Shadyside Witch, she possesses men and forces them to murder the town’s residents. She also focuses her energy on one specific person, and the killers pursue that person until they’re dead. Admittedly, it’s a strange setup for the curse, and the films never explain why the witch would touch one specific person — or force other people to do her bidding. Fear Street fan theories strive to answer this question, concluding that Sarah Fier may not be responsible for the Shadyside murders after all.

[Spoilter alert: This article contains spoilers for Fear Street Part 1: 1994 and Fear Street Part 2: 1978.]

Could Sunnyvale be responsible for the curse on Shadyside?

'Fear Street Part 3: 1666' sees the Shadyside killer wearing a skull mask and standing by a window
The Shadyside killer in ‘Fear Street Part 3: 1666’ | Netflix

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The rivalry between the towns of Shadyside and Sunnyvale hangs over the Fear Street films, a small detail that could prove important later on. Sunnyvale is the wealthier of the two towns, and it isn’t plagued by whatever curse haunts Shadyside. The residents of each town have a longstanding dislike for one another, and Sunnyvale may actually be responsible for that.

A fan theory from CBR predicts that Sarah isn’t the one possessing the Shadyside killers or forcing them to do her bidding. In fact, it goes so far as to suggest that two curses are at play throughout the story. The first, which created the Shadyside killers, stems from a bargain Sunnyvale made with the devil. The theory posits that Shadyside’s neighboring town struck a deal to ensure its prosperity — even if it meant killing Shadysiders in the process.

The second curse involves Sarah Fier’s ability to share visions with certain characters. The theory predicts that Sarah was killed by Sunnyvale for trying to stop the original curse. Her attempts to reach characters like Sam (Olivia Scott Welch) and Ziggy (Sadie Sink), then, stem from a place of good intentions. What if Sarah is trying to make the teenagers of Shadyside aware of the real curse?

This would explain why the Shadyside killers appear hellbent on getting rid of anyone Sarah can communicate with. It also makes sense of the predicament with Sarah’s bones. If she isn’t the one murdering Shadysiders, reuniting her bones obviously wouldn’t solve the problem.

The question then becomes how the characters can break the curse over Shadyside. Another fan theory has an answer for that — and it involves a very specific family in Sunnyvale.

This ‘Fear Street’ fan theory suggests one family could play a bigger role than they’ve let on

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Fear Street fans seem to be on the same page as CBR when it comes to who’s responsible for the Shadyside curse. Sarah’s backstory remains a mystery, and the films are likely to throw a curveball at viewers during Fear Street Part 2: 1666. One Reddit user agrees that Sunnyvale is probably responsible for at least part of the curse. They take that theory a step further, suggesting the Goode family knows more than they’re letting on.

“My guess is the Goode family,” they wrote. “Long-standing history of leading Sunnyvale which seems to be perfect so I’m guessing it’s a life-draining curse to keep Sunnyvale perfect while Shadyvale withers. And the sheriff probably has to die to break the curse. Sarah Fier as another witch knew what the Goode ancestor was doing so she basically left a time-traveling spell on her hand to show the truth.”

If the Goodes are responsible for the Shadyside curse, it makes sense that the police never make true progress on the case. Fear Street Part 1: 1994 introduces Sheriff Goode (Ashley Zukerman), but the second installment gives him a bigger role to play. It makes young Nick Goode (Ted Sutherland) a love interest for Ziggy and someone caught up in the Camp Nightwing massacre. When she tells him about the curse, however, he writes her off and tells the town the whole thing was Tommy’s (McCabe Slye) fault.

The adult sheriff will return for the trilogy’s conclusion, and the Reddit theory suggests he may need to die to break the curse. Only time will tell if that’s actually the case — but it does seem like a fitting way to bring the story full circle.

‘Fear Street Part 3: 1666’ will connect the dots of Sarah Fier’s backstory

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Fortunately, viewers won’t need to wait long to see if there’s any truth behind these fan theories. Fear Street Part 3: 1666 will take the trilogy’s main character back in time, finally showing her what created the Shadyside curse. Both previous films contained twist endings, so revealing that Sarah isn’t actually evil would follow that trend.

Whether Sarah is the witch she’s made out to be or something else entirely, the truth will come out in just a few days. Fear Street Part 3: 1666 will be available to stream on Netflix starting on July 16, 2021.