Dark Series Review
***** Spoiler Alert *****
[Note: The following review contains spoilers for the series]
You might have watched Christopher Nolan’s movies and wondered how one can complicate a story with time-traveling; like Inception, which was a class apart from the rest of his movies. But, in Netflix’s Dark, you won’t be wondering much because it will take you forever to understand what the hell is going on.
It is a one-of-its-kind series where it turns into more of logic puzzles; you will spend more trying to understand it than you would have ever spent for a trigonometry quadratic integral equation. If a character A played by B in timeline C, solve for X that type of thing.
In the first season, there were quite the twists and turns – how Mikkel turned out to be Michael. One of the best things about this series is how the twists turn out to be a void that fills the gap with a fabulous storyline.
By the second season, Dark had reached far above the straight-forward supernatural horror story. Something told me that it was only going to get more twisted. Co-creators Baran bo Odar and Jantje Friese have constructed the story in a way that will only make sense at the end of the finale episode. We can never make any guesses as to how this character ever turned out to be here in the first place.
This was not the question of How but When.
In contrast to our regular perception of how the past can change the future, in Dark, the future influences the past mostly. And how it solves with the characters matching with the story that’s so satisfying and a little intertwisted. We are trapped by time as there is no such thing as free will and we follow as it dictates.
There’s a hidden bootstrap paradox in this time travel analogy. For instance, if you went back in time to 1858 when Brits took over India and went all American Psycho, you wouldn’t be where you are now. It is how it has been and how it should be, for you to exist in the present world. But in Dark, they connect all these paradoxes and time travels, cubes it with logic errors to give us a headache.
When it comes to the Third season, it was the perfect finishing touch to the Finale like how you’d squeeze lemon on top of Chilly Chicken. First 5 episodes, it was quite hard to keep track of the timelines, the characters, and their counterparts in the parallel world with all the mind-boggling reveals.
I loved two things in this series – the part when Sic Mundus gathered together, and it gave me the chills when their entire purpose was revealed as a glimpse of the first two seasons. I went all “Go, Sic Mundus!!”
The concept of Quantum Entanglement dwindling with the two possible realities taking place at the same time.
Eva explained how the line that draws between the two worlds ties together at a point where time standstills. More than just a theory, it was something I believe, of course, if only time travel was possible. And the split-screen with different outcomes was perfectly matching with this theory and how it has always happened in the last three attempts.
We can’t go about without mentioning the casting director, Simone Bar, for the impeccable work she has done in bringing the liveliness and the resemblance across the ages. An uncanny casting duo was brought in for characters like Ulrich Nielsen, Alexsander Tiedemann, Katharina, and most importantly Claudia and Regina Tiedemann and so many more. An interesting fact, how Younger Peter Doppler came to Winden in ’86 and met Charlotte, it was played by Stephen Kampwirth (Peter Doppler’s) actual son to look alike.
One of my most favorite things about the series was the background score. The intimidating music adds pure evil effects to the dark themed cinematography, silent air-succumbed atmosphere and even you would find it hard to grab a gasp.
The ending could not be more perfect with the puzzle pieces fitting in for the final reveal. The mastermind behind all this – Tanenhaus who had so much hope, worked, and thrived for this family to be brought back by the time machine he built for 12 years, was finally up and running on June 21, 1986. The Nuclear gas leakage accident happened on the same day. “Beginning is the end. And, the end is the beginning”.
Some of the Hidden details I picked out from the series:
Tanenhaus mentions about the third world in season 1. “Have you heard about Triquetra? Nothing exists without a third dimension. There is not just ups and downs, there’s a center too.”
I had a feeling of how it was strange; the 80s song that was playing on a TV in the bunker was Irgendwie, Irgendwo, Irgendwann meaning “somehow, somewhere, sometime”. When looked up for the lyrics, it has another in-depth meaning of time traveler between the present and the future.
St. Christopher’s pendant was given to Helene by Hannah in 1954 when she visits the doctor for an abortion. Helene eventually passed it on to her daughter Katharina but the Adult Katharina travels back to 1986 to save Ulrich. Helene kills the Adult Katharina and drops the pendant there. Years later, Jonas gifts it to Martha – Helen’s Granddaughter and Hannah’s great-great-great-great-granddaughter.
And remember how Helene drags the body of Katharina into the lake and in 2019, Magnus and Bartosz scare Martha; spook her by telling a story how a woman was killed and drowned into the lake? Sadly, it was their own mother.
There could also be another reason how the two worlds were tied together. When Hannah was conceived in the second world by Ulrich, Older Egon comes and rescues her before the Apocalypse. She goes back to 1953 in the first one where she has an affair with Adult Egon and gets pregnant. It may not look straight-up legit but a probable explanation as to Eva’s “Egon, you must create your past to save the family tree” could be the reason behind that.
Some Questions with No Answers
- You wondered what happened to Gretchen, though it traveled from 1953 to 2019, in the end?
- Though it may seem obvious from our perception that the two worlds did not exist if the accident had not taken place and how everyone fades away from existence, what about the two worlds? Did it just disappear into thin air? But, this seems like a plausible explanation why Hannah had a nightmare the previous night of Winden was being destroyed after a blackout and she stares at the yellow raincoat. This is open to interpretation – like how Jonas still exists in her sub-conscious mind.
- Why did four of them travel back to 1888 and Jonas was working on creating the God Particle? Were they trying to create a portal on the same day as Apocalypse so that they could go back to 2054 or what was that?
- What’s the original world like? Did it have all the main characters in it? We know how intertwined the two new worlds are, with Mikkel traveling back into time and becoming Michael. Does this mean no Jonas in the new world?
- And, last but the most important question! Does this mean, H.G.Tannhaus may never invent a time-traveling device in the future?
What are your thoughts on this? Let us know in the comments section below. Do read the other related articles in the entertainment section.
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Guest Author – Anirudh Srinivasan
A Petrolhead junkie who chills with a chai and been searching for my inner peace.
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