This post contains spoilers for Season 3 of Stranger Things. Summer love was blooming for the younger kids of Hawkins on Season 3 of Stranger Things, but once again, romance wasn't exactly in the cards for Steve Harrington. A few whirlwind days of investigating a Russian code with co-worker Robin sparked his feelings for the sarcastic teen, but Robin ultimately rejected his advances and revealed she was gay. Romance was ditched in favor of what turned out to be an excellent platonic friendship, but according to actor Maya Hawke, Steve and Robin almost got together on Stranger Things 3.
Season 3's introduction of Robin (Hawke) and her teasing scorecard of Steve's (Joe Keery) blunders definitely convinced viewers Steve was on his way to ending up with the exact opposite of his ex-girlfriend Nancy (Natalia Dyer). After exchanging wry remarks behind the Scoops Ahoy counter for the first few episodes of the season, Steve and Robin began to really bond as they assisted Dustin (Gaten Matarazzo) in decoding the Russian message his radio tower had picked up. By the time the trio plus Lucas' sister Erica (Priah Ferguson) were exploring the Russians' lair underneath Starcourt Mall, the adventurous Steve and Robin had become as iconic of a duo as Mike (Finn Wolfhard) and Eleven (Millie Bobby).
Once the group had escaped the Russian bunker, Steve shared his growing feelings for Robin, which led her to reveal her sexuality, solidifying a loyal, platonic friendship between the two. But don't think you caught a whiff of the Russians' drugs if you were shipping them before Robin shared her truth: The teens becoming a couple was reportedly the creative team's original intention as Season 3 filming began.
"Throughout filming, we started to feel like she and Joe shouldn’t get together, and that she’s gay," Hawke told the Wall Street Journal. "Even when I go back and watch earlier episodes, it just seems like the most obvious decision ever."
Hawke also explained that the Season 3 script was a work in progress when she auditioned for Robin, meaning that she didn't know the full plans for the character. As she told Variety, it wasn't until she was filming the season's fourth or fifth episode that she and Stranger Things co-creators Ross and Matt Duffer decided to apply this detail about Robin to the show.
"Sometimes we can have empathy for people on screen that we wouldn’t normally have empathy for in real life,” Hawke told Variety. “If I can hope for anything it’s that maybe some people fell in love with Robin and that helped them fall in love with girls who love girls and boys who love boys."
Fans probably wouldn't complain if Robin and Steve each find a happy relationship somehow, but for now, it looks like their friendship is bound to be one for the record books. While Robin's coming out inspired several memes praising Steve as an LGBTQ+ ally, the most important takeaway from the character remains to be her honesty about herself. Personally, I already expect a potential Season 4 to revolve around them working together at the video store. As of Aug. 1, Netflix remains mum about whether Stranger Things is officially renewed for Season 4, but if best buds Robin and Steve continue to helm the Scoops Troop, Hawkins is in good hands when more monsters stop by.
Season 3 of Stranger Things is streaming on Netflix.