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Stranger Things Make-Up Artist Shuts Down Circulating Theory About Eddie's Tattoos

Few characters in pop culture have resonated with the masses in recent years quite like Eddie Munson (Joseph Quinn), an instant fan-favorite on "Stranger Things 4." From cosplay tutorials to the ever-growing amount of Hellfire Club merchandise available for purchase, Eddie lovers are doing all they can to mimic his look. For many, this includes recreating his slew of tattoos on their own skin.

In the majority of his scenes, Eddie's ink is hidden underneath his customized denim jacket. But when he's just sporting his signature Hellfire Club baseball T-shirt, several substantial pieces declare themselves. The guy is thoroughly decorated. As outlined by lead make-up artist Amy L. Forsythe on Instagram, there's a demon head and spider on his chest. On his right arm, there's a wyvern, a swarm of bats, and a puppet master.

It's easy to assume that these designs were strategically chosen to foreshadow not only Eddie's tragic "Stranger Things 4" fate, but also one of the most iconic moments of the entire series. On the movie-length Season 4 finale, Eddie brings two of his tattoos to life as he plays an epic version of Metallica's "Master of Puppets" before his tragic demise by the vicious demo-bats.

Were Eddie's tattoos intentionally symbolic of his final moments, or were they purely coincidental? Forsythe recently revealed the truth.

Eddie's tattoos don't foreshadow his Upside Down performance or death

Having Eddie's tattoos foreshadow his Upside Down jam session and gut-wrenching death would have been a cool touch, but lead make-up artist Amy L. Forsythe dashed that theory. In an interview with Insider, Forsythe revealed that, when creating the tattoos, she had no idea that Eddie would eventually play "Master of Puppets" prior to a demo-bat demise. In fact, Eddie's ink was meant to serve other purposes.

"The puppet master tattoo was a nod to Vecna — how he controls people and pulls them up from the ground," said Forthye. 

In an interview with Tudum, Joseph Quinn added, "I think [the puppet tattoo] was on there before those [final] scripts came out. That might have just been a coincidence, really."

As for the bats, this tattoo was meant to look "heavy metal" and serve as a nod to Steve Harrington's (Joe Keery) scuffle with the demo-bats. When Steve comes out victorious, Eddie endearingly compares him to legendary rocker Ozzy Osbourne, who famously bit the head off a bat on stage.

Though Eddie's tattoos aren't a clever foreshadowing device, much effort went into their selection and near-daily application. Forsythe told Tudum, "I wanted his tattoos to have thin, fallen out line work to look like he gets them done in the trailer park by a kitchen scratcher." Quinn was asked for his input in the designs, which, Forsythe told Insider, were "lick-and-sticks." The actor had his fake tattoos frequently re-applied while filming "Stranger Things," but given their warm reception by fans, this tedious process was worth it.