Chief Jim Hopper is alive, if a recent theory is to be believed about his fate in "Stranger Things" Season 4.

A theory from TV Line suggests that Hopper faked his death so that he can continue to investigate and possibly infiltrate the Russians' operations in secret. He supposedly planned his death with the help of Dr. Sam Owens.

Fans may remember that before the explosion at Star Court mall, which saw him presumably die, he had called Dr. Owens. Hopper dialed the professor while at Murray's place and when he did not pick up, Hopper left him a message.

The theory suggests that Hopper secretly plotted his fake death with Owens in order to keep Joyce, Eleven, and the rest of the kids safe. If the Russians believe that he is dead, then they would have no reason to go after Joyce or the kids, to discourage his attempts to investigate their operations about the Upside Down.

This is supposedly why his corpse was not found. Likewise, in a "blink and you'll miss it moment," he disappeared from where Joyce last saw him beside the machine prior to the explosion. The theory claimed that Hopper may have crawled his way out when Joyce closed her eyes and looked away as she turned the keys to set off the explosion.

"There's a chance that he went from tearfully gazing at her to lying flat on the ground fast enough to avoid the full brunt of the blast," the fan theorised, adding "If he did, that all but guarantees that he's 'the American' that the Russkies have locked up in Kamchatka, does it not?"

This is just among the many theories about Hopper's fate in "Stranger Things" Season 4. Another is that he is in the Upside Down after he was knocked away from the blast. Given that it is the Upside Down, instead of forward he was flown backward straight into the crack in the wall that leads to the dark place.

Despite all these theories, David Harbour continues to remain mum about his character's fate in the installment. He said he does not know if Hopper is dead or alive in "Stranger Things" Season 4, since the creators did not tell him anything.

David Harbour in Stranger Things
David Harbour reprises his role as Chief Jim Hopper in "Stranger Things" Season 4. Netflix / YouTube