Warning: spoilers ahead. If you’ve seen Stranger Things 4 already, you probably caught yourself wondering … What the heck is with all of these clocks?! Well, we dug around and found the answers behind the mysterious grandfather clock and spoiler alert — it’s not a very good sign!

What Do the Grandfather Clocks in ‘Stranger Things’ Mean?

Usually, when a character in Stranger Things 4 sees the creepy grandfather clock, they die shortly thereafter. Yep, the clock is first introduced as an omen of death. Like we said, not a very good sign.

First, Chrissy Cunningham sees the clock in episode 1 whenever she slips into her hallucinations with Vecna, until she dies later that episode. Other characters who see the clock are also swept into hallucinations with Vecna, usually meeting their demise — with the exception of Max, of course. (Woo, Max!)

It’s later revealed that the clock is owned by the Creels, as the Hawkins gang finds it in Victor Creel’s house. We also discover that Vecna himself is Henry Creel, Victor’s son, who uses the Upside Down version of the Creel house as his home base.

Symbolism Behind the Grandfather Clocks in ‘Stranger Things’

Clocks represent a passing of time, which can represent the fact that Vecna’s victims’ time has nearly run out — it is no coincidence that many of the clocks are set to midnight.

Throughout the series, we learn that Vecna is a human who found himself trapped in the Upside Down for years thanks to our girl, Eleven. It should be noted that the Upside Down is a place without time, we even see Vecna wind the clock back in front of Eleven which can symbolize his desire to control and move beyond time.

The symbol of the grandfather clock also links to the true identity of Vecna, as it’s an object from the Creel house and Vecna’s real name is Henry Creel.

What The Duffer Brothers Have Said

The Stranger Things creators, The Duffer Brothers, have suggested a different reading of the clock. In a trailer breakdown for IGN, they say: “She shouldn’t have looked at the clock, but she unfortunately did.” This suggests that Vecna can simply manifest the clock into the world and doesn’t send it as a vision, so whoever sees it becomes his prey, plus there might be a way to ignore the object.

“It’s a really core part of the mystery that our Hawkins group is trying to solve,” Ross Duffer told IGN. “So, I don’t want to give away too much other than to say this clock plays a very, very important role moving forward.”

“And you don’t want to see the clock! If you see the clock, it’s not great,” Matt Duffer added. Noted!

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