When you live in a place that is as nutty and eventful as Hawkins, Indiana, it’s understandable that romantic relationships and entanglements take a back seat to the nonstop supernatural and government nonsense that seems to be going on there. There are some pretty significant love stories that have taken place throughout the course of Stranger Things, but those love connections seem to be few and far between.
So even though romance clearly isn’t a priority in this hit Netflix series, which characters in the show would have made great couples? And more importantly, which of these potential relationships could have been awesome, but tragically never got a real chance?
10. Murray & Alexei
When it comes to couples in Stranger Things that should have gotten together, this truly seems like a match made in heaven. Murray Bauman is obsessed with all things Russian, and Alexei loved all things American. Murray is probably one of the only people in America who could fluently speak Russian in the 80s.
And most importantly, Murray and Alexei basically became ride-or-die friends within a few days of meeting each other, so one can only imagine what their relationship could have developed into if they were given a little bit more time to get to know each other.
9. Billy & Heather
Billy Hargrove seemed to be jonesing to have a shot with Karen Wheeler, but we think that Heather Holloway was a much more appropriate partner for him for quite a few reasons.
First of all, she’s actually his age, instead of being his mother’s age. Secondly, although their interactions were pretty brief, it seemed like Heather was pretty into Billy but she also had a legitimate interest in his safety and welfare. Plus, why wouldn’t two super cute teenage lifeguards want to date one another?
8. El & Will
All of the members of the Party have been really good friends to El, and she has been a really great friend to them right back. However, the special connection between El and Will is obvious.
El was the one who really saved Will when he was stuck in the Upside Down, and as a result of his experiences, the two of them can understand each other in a way that the rest of the Party just can’t. They’ve both seen and done things that no normal kid should have, so they have a connection that no one else in the series does.
7. Max & Dustin
From the moment that the cool Californian chick also known as Mad Max rolled into town, Dustin and Lucas were in competition for her love. And while Lucas clearly came up the winner at present, Dustin and Max still clearly have a strong connection that could develop into something more.
Max is super cool, Dustin is super cool, and clearly they have a lot in common. Even more than that, they are really good friends, and that makes a great foundation for something more. Max and Lucas probably won’t be together forever, so once they’re done it’d be nice to see Dustin and Max give it a go.
6. Billy & Steve
So, is it just us, or was Billy Hargrove, weirdly, insanely obsessed with Steve Harrington from the very moment that they met?
Yes, it would seem that Billy was in a one-sided war to be king of the school, but even if that’s what he wanted, his fixation on Steve was way over the top. It’s a thin line between love and hate, and it would be really interesting to see what this rival duo could do as a team instead of as enemies.
5. Keith & Barb
Keith the arcade guy has been angling for a date with Nancy Wheeler for as long as he’s been on Stranger Things, but it seems like he would have made a much better match with Barb Holland than with Nancy.
Let’s be real, there’s no way on earth that Nancy is ditching Steve or Jonathan for Keith, and Barb deserves some love too. Keith and Barb are the kinds of people who are always being unfairly overlooked, so it only makes sense that they team up and give each other the appreciation they deserve.
4. Nancy & Billy
Billy may have straight up told Karen Wheeler that her daughter Nancy wasn’t his type, but frankly, he has no idea what kind of girl Nancy really is.
Nancy may have the veneer of an uptight goody two shoes, but honestly we think that if Billy got one glimpse of Nancy with a gun in her hand he would be one smitten kitten. More importantly, Nancy is actually tough enough to put up with the ultra alpha male energy of Billy, which is not something most girls in Hawkins can say.
3. Steve & Heather
Heather Holloway did seem like a typically snotty popular girl at first glance, but she softened right up when she thought that Billy was in trouble. And Steve Harrington seemed like the arrogant jock that everyone hated in high school at first glance, but when the trouble really started he showed his true, kind colors.
So Steve and Heather seem like a good match on the surface because they make the perfect high school king and queen, however on a deeper level they probably could have brought out the best in each other too.
2. El & Dustin
The relationship between every character in the Party is great and unique in it’s own way. But one of the purest and most lovable friendships is the one between Dustin and El. Dustin accepted El from the jump and has always had her back, just like she’s always had his.
Dustin easily accepts all of El’s weirdest angles, and Dustin’s innocence is something that El could really use more of in her life. They make great friends, but if El ever moves on from Mike it’d be wonderful to see where her relationship with Dustin could go.
1. Joyce & Hopper
Of all of the Stranger Things ships that should have set sail but didn’t, this is the most painful one. Mostly because it was on the verge of becoming canon when Hopper was tragically ripped from the fabric of Hawkins (and hopefully transported into another place).
Joyce and Hopper go way back and their friendship is a solid one, but it’s clear that Jim has fallen pretty hard for Joyce. Joyce hasn’t had much luck in the love department either, so having a relationship with someone who loves and respects her like Jim does would be a great thing after everything she’s gone through.