‘Stranger Things 4’: Dr. Brenner May Be Alive, Says Actor Matthew Modine

Stranger Things fans have had time to process Hopper’s fake-out death and the fact that David Harbour will be back in epic fashion.

In a series where it’s plausible to harbor suspicions about who or what is really dead, expect the unexpected. And that includes characters like Dr. Martin Brenner, the scientist responsible for MKUltra experiments, the gate to the Upside Down, and Eleven’s introduction to Hawkins.

But is he really dead? Matthew Modine doesn’t think Stranger Things fans should count him out.

Matthew Modine as Dr. Martin Brenner in 'Stranger Things'
Matthew Modine as Dr. Martin Brenner in ‘Stranger Things’ | Courtesy of Netflix

The last time viewers saw Dr. Brenner in ‘Stranger Things’

Season 1 set up Brenner as the human villain responsible for cruel experiments on Terry Ives, Eleven, and other subjects at the Hawkins, Indiana lab. Spying on Russians was part of his objective.

During the first installment, Eleven escaped the secret facility when the gateway cracked, Will Byers was taken to the Upside Down, and Brenner tried to contain his mess.

When he and his agents tried to capture Eleven at the school, the Demogorgon showed up and plucked people off. While Eleven and her friends escaped its clutches, Brenner was attacked by the bloodthirsty monster. She later defeated it.

RELATED: ‘Stranger Things’: Will Eleven’s Powers Come Back in Season 4?

Matthew Modine thinks his character could come back

During a recent interview with NME, Matthew Modine spoke about his portrayal of Dr. Brenner. He’s on board with a fan theory that his character may still be alive.

“I love that the fans are trying to figure out where Dr. Brenner is, because we’re all wondering, you know, is he in the Upside Down? Did the Demogorgon drag him away? Is he going to re-emerge?” Modine said.

“And the show’s creators, the Duffer Brothers, have said that unless you see a body, the character’s not dead. And obviously we never saw Dr. Brenner’s body.”

Modine also expressed interest in returning if the opportunity arises, but didn’t confirm whether it’s happening.

Modine doesn’t think Dr. Brenner is a true villain

While most fans might agree that Brenner was a baddie on the series due to his treatment of Eleven, her mother, and other children like Kali who grew up with powers, Modine kind of disagrees. When speaking with NME, he implied Eleven was the problem.

“I’ve watched the show, and I don’t think Dr. Brenner ever killed anybody,” he said. “[Whereas] Millie Bobby Brown – Eleven – killed two interns in the hospital and killed the people in the hamburger shop. Then she flipped a van – and you’d imagine this probably killed the people who were in that van.”

Modine explained that Brenner could have simply been looking out for the public’s welfare by trying to apprehend Eleven before she landed “in the hands of someone that’s truly evil.” He cited the breadth of her powers and Brenner’s supposed understanding of them.

It’s unclear if the Duffer Brothers cast Modine in Stranger Things 4, but the character did have a connection to Russia and a host of other super-powered kids. Don’t be shocked if he pops up in the new season.