Saturday, June 29, 2019

Dark (Season 2)

Generally, saying “more of the same” isn’t a good thing.  It could be.  In the case of Dark, it might be, since the first season was done well.  It would be a way of letting you know that the second season is just as intricate as the first.  However, it would be misleading and a bit inaccurate.

For those that haven’t heard of the series, Dark takes place in a fictional German town called Winden.  It might seem normal town.  The first season was released in 2017 and took place in 2019.  Winden’s nuclear power plant is slated to be decommissioned.  A young boy named Mikkel went missing, which mirrored another  disappearance 33 years prior.  Oh, and there’s a wormhole in a cave that can take you back in time 33 years.  Thus, parts of the season also took place in 1986 and 1952.  It ended with a boy named Jonas stranded in 2052.

For those that were turned off by the confusing nature of the first season, it doesn’t get better.  This one has the same intricacies, only more of them.  Season 2 picks up some time after the end of the first season.  Jonas has been in the future for a while and has been looking for a way back.  The apocalypse hit and he has to try to stop it, or at least try.  The residents of 2053 aren’t keen on letting him into the remains of the power plant, which would help him get back.

People go back and forth and talk to their younger selves.  There’s a time machine that people give to themselves or to other people.  (Keeping track of who has which version of it is a task in and of itself.)  There’s also the chicken-and-the-egg nature of where the entire time loop began.  If Jonas is to undo everything, where does he do it?  Does it matter?  Even if he does succeed, it would come at a great personal cost to himself.

We also have two additional years to keep track of: 1921 and 2053.  It appears that 1921 is the earliest time period, chronologically.  It’s not clear, though, if 2053 is the last.  (The second season takes place in 2020, so the other years have advanced to 1954 and 1987.)

In my review of Season 1, I mentioned the Novikov Self-Consistency Principle.  This continues in the second season.  Those that are aware of the nature of their reality try to cheat fate, as if that’s possible.  Many of the younger versions seem idealistic, wanting to prevent the future, but it always happens as it was meant to.  (It would be so easy to just shoot your former self or something, but no one thinks of that!)  Once they’re older, it would seem that the characters get more jaded and see things differently.

There’s a part of me that wants to reveal more of the plot, but I don’t know that I can.  It’s so complicated and confusing, it’s better that you just watch it.  The first season was 10 episodes and this was 8, meaning you could probably watch both seasons in two or three days if you had nothing else to do.  (In fact, Season 3 is supposed to be the last.  I wouldn’t blame you for waiting until that drops so that you could watch the entire thing at once.)

This series seems to be made for people that like to pay attention.  If you were planning to watch this while doing something else, you’ll probably miss things.  Also consider that it’s in German, so you might have to use the subtitles.  If you start watching, prepare to actually watch it.

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