Emergence Season 1 Episode 5: RDZ9021 Recap

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In episode 5, Emergence explores the aftermath of the attack on Benny and April. The episode title is a license plate number which belongs to their attacker, but it sounds like it could be Piper’s serial number. Or maybe it’s the hitman’s serial number.

Piper has more visions, which lead to new discoveries about her AI subconscious. Ed’s health deteriorates, putting Piper and Mia at risk. Kindred and Jo face off again, which escalates the determination of each to bring the other one down.

The sometimes deadly combination of family, love and risk is the theme of the week, along with the question of what or who is worth fighting and dying for. Whenever Kindred is involved, the concept of love vs control also comes up. Kindred buys, steals or manufactures love and family, ensuring there’s no risk to himself. He is the symbol of the modern industrial lifestyle and in opposition to Jo’s open family, who put in the hard work of being there for each other through good times and bad.

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Emergence Season 1 Episode 1: Pilot Recap

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Emergence is my favorite of the four new dramas I watched this week (also Prodigal Son, Stumptown and Evil). It has a compelling mystery with its own twist, characters I already care about who aren’t dark and cynical and a diverse, gender-balanced cast.

I really like the philosophy the show exhibited in the pilot. It’s not overly sweet or dark, but there’s a certain warmth and optimism. I get the sense that Piper is the main clue to a larger mystery, not a unique magical child who’s meant to save the world by herself. Hopefully the characters and mystery plot will stay in the forefront, while shoot outs and gore will be kept to a minimum.

And I love this new mother-daughter team of soft-hearted, unlikely bad*sses, who are part of a family of flawed but caring people. Real moms with good judgement for the win. I was so proud of Jo for being the one with the gun who could protect her family when an intruder broke into their beachhouse, but also for getting the family out without firing a shot. She put the safety of her family and solving crimes and mysteries first, as she should.

Recap

Emergence begins late at night in the sleepy Long Island, NY town of Southold, when there’s a town-wide power outage at the same time that a plane crashes on the beach. Police chief Jo Evans (Allison Tolman) is awakened by the outage. She and her family go outside to see what’s going on and notice an ionized glow, similar to the Aurora Borealis, rising from the site of the plane crash. Jo gets a call about the crash and says she’ll be right there. She tells her young teen daughter, Mia (Ashley Aufderheide), and her father, Ed Sawyer (Clancy Brown), that she’s leaving and sends them back to bed.

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Dark Season 2: Complete List of Characters with Histories and Analysis

Dark S2Ep1 Adam's Family Tree Board

Adam’s Family Tree Board: All individual photos are young versions of the characters. Left Panel: Hannah, Jonas; Doris; Egon, Claudia; Regina, Aleksander/Boris; Bartosz. Center Panel: Hannah, Jonas, Michael/Mikkel, Ines; Peter, Charlotte, Franziska, Elisabeth; Aleksander,Bartosz, Regina; Ulrich, Magnus, Martha, Katharina, Mikkel; Silja, Noah, Agnes. Right Panel: Noah?, Charlotte; Peter; Franziska, Elisabeth; Tronte, Jana, Mads; Katharina, Ulrich; Magnus, Martha; Mikkel.

Adam uses the youngest version available for his individual photos in his version of Claudia’s Winden Family Tree board. While Claudia’s board doesn’t cover the entire town, it covers most of the characters who play a significant role in season 1, and shows them in each of their phases of life. Adam’s is much more exclusive- he’s only interested in narrowing down the survivors of his apocalypse and their immediate predecessors.

Season 1 Character Board

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Dark Season 1: Complete List of Characters

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Dark Season 2 Episode 8: Endings and Beginnings Recap

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Bring on the apocalypse. In season 2 episode 8, Endings and Beginnings, it’s June 27, 2020. We spend the episode counting down to the fateful moment as the key players are moved around the board one more time, so as to be in the proper places when Adam’s plans come to fruition.

This is an episode about death and salvation. Personal salvation, the salvation of the world, and the fight to save Time as an entity. The death of individuals and the apocalyptic death which engulfs Winden, which bring about the death of hope and idealism. Not every who dies is really dead, and not everyone who’s saved realizes they’re being saved. The episode is a shell game, as frequently happens on Dark.

The entire season has been about beginnings and endings, and whether they really exist at all in Winden. This episode brings an end to the second cycle, but it brings up the question again of exactly what game is being played and if anyone can really win.

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Dark Season 2 Episode 7: The White Devil

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Dark season 2 episode 7, The White Devil, grants the wishes of some of the characters, but some dreams come true as nightmares. Old Claudia’s body is found in 1953 and identified by Child Helge as the White Devil. Hannah takes a trip to 1953 to visit the other White Devil, Ulrich. She meets the Young Adult version of Egon while she’s there.

In 2020, Katharina goes full warrior goddess. She remembers she has a daughter to protect from incest and sketchy boyfriends who have become old men. Plus, she decides she’s ready to become a time traveler.

Martha meets Stranger Jonas and learns the truth about their relationship. Thanks, Mom.

Adult Claudia puts off the French delegation again, then takes the day off to prevent Egon’s death. It’s her turn to learn that the past/time can’t be changed, even if the events she’s focusing on feel to her like they are in the future.

If you are into drinking games, taking a shot for every apology given during this episode could be fun. Or it might be necessary to help you get through the episode.

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From the Horned God to Dionysus: The Men and Mythology of Netflix’s Dark

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This Seems Like a Good Time to Talk About Ulrich as a Horned God (Who Is Tied in Knots)

**Spoilers through Season 2 Episode 8**

Okay, let’s give this a whirl. As you might imagine, Horned Gods aren’t my specialty, so I’ve done some research. But also, by the end of season 2, everything metaphorical in Dark is twisted and tangled together, just like the storylines. In season 1, we had nice, neat metaphors presented in ways that couldn’t be missed, with deeper meanings there if you wanted to search for them.

But, before we go any further, a warning. I can’t ignore current events while I’m writing this, and that’s not what I’m about, anyway. This piece was always going to examine the characters, mythology and their connection to the real world. Then the real world didn’t give me a choice. The creators of Dark didn’t choose to have boys be the ones to disappear simply to give women a break from victimization. The boys of the real world are making themselves disappear, and they’re often doing it while armed to the teeth.

They set the show in a town which was losing its main source of employment and then put that town through a slow dystopia which led to a fast apocalypse. This is what Western culture has put itself through since the 1970s, when corporations began moving manufacturing jobs from their traditional bases, and the towns whose original farming and small business economies were destroyed by the factories in the 19th century were now destroyed by the factories leaving.

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Dark Season 2 Episode 6: An Endless Cycle Recap

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Episode 6 of Dark, season 2, An Endless Cycle, answers questions which have lingered since the beginning of the series. The episode follows Young Jonas back to June 20, 2019, the day before Michael Kahnwald hung himself, and gives us a baseline for normal Winden life in 2019. The theme of the episode is betrayal.

On the time travel side, as expected, Jonas’ visit with Michael doesn’t go the way he wants. But he makes the most of his time in 2019 before he meets with his father, and has some unexpected encounters.

Recap

The episode begins with a voiceover by Adam and a visual showing the highpoints of the series, in reverse chronological order, ending at the beginning, with Michael’s suicide. Adam is, as usual, focused on beginnings as endings and looking for the ultimate terminating point, the end of the beginning, the exact moment where it all began, so that he can pull the plant out and get its entire root. With nothing left of the root, the plant can’t grow back. The time loop is extinguished. Or so he hopes.

But the beginning of the narrative is the moment I’ve been waiting for. The iconic, unaltered, Jonas Kahnwald morning routine, viewed in its natural state. The one we should have been comparing all of his other mornings to, for the last 15 episodes. And that one morning of Martha’s, too.

Ready?

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Dark Season 2 Episode 5: Lost and Found Recap

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In season 2 episode 5 of Dark, Lost and Found, Young Jonas and Adam have a long fireside chat, while Bartosz spills the beans and the rest of the teenagers become time travelers. Old Ulrich and Young Mikkel are reunited, but Egon and Ines tear them apart again. Katharina and Clausen continue to look for answers.

Recap

It’s Stranger Jonas’ turn for a sex dream with Martha, but his doesn’t go so well. Martha develops black veins in her abdomen, which lead to the God Particle bursting forth from her belly to envelop him like it’s The Blob.

Stranger Jonas startles awake. He turns and sits up, still in his childhood bedroom in June, 2020.

Love hurts, y’all. 34  years later, at home again, with Mama Hannah sleeping in the next room, he’s still having nightmares. Specifically, time travel nightmares about time consuming the love of his life and then himself, as soon as he finds her again. He must hate the God Particle and what it’s done to his life and family.

I believe that everyone who has been born would have been born even if the God Particle had never been created. Time in Winden has become twisted and warped, warping the relationships of the people who live there. Dark may go darker than that, but I believe in the power of Martha and Jonas. They are Ariadne and Dionysus, saviors who each have their own story but are meant to end up together.

Dark is the story of Sic Mundus, a possibly sinister mystery cult created by a desperate man who wants to change the laws of physics. It’s the story of Winden, a small town with a nuclear power plant and a history of mysterious deaths and tangled, often sordid, interactions between the townspeople. It’s the story of the evolution of time travel and how it affects the people who use it. And it’s the story of a series of star crossed pairs and trios, separated through space, time, and the circumstances of their own births.

The last one might be the most important.

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Dark Season 2 Episode 4: The Travelers Recap

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In S2 Ep4, of Dark, The Travelers, Jonas wakes up in 1921 and meets both younger and older versions of characters he’s seen before. We discover that Sic Mundus really is part of the Underworld and Agnes was always a fashion maven. In the 21st century, the secret of time travel finally comes out.

Some well deserved justice is served up on Bartosz, who’s known the secret of the caves since a few days after Mikkel disappeared, but kept it to himself, among his other, smaller, betrayals.

Katharina is also forced to confront the past. If she and Ulrich had been less harsh and more patient with Mikkel the day he arrived in 1986, could things have been different?

Everyone gets what they deserve.

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Dark Season 2 Episode 3: Ghosts Recap

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Dark season 2, episode 3, Ghosts, follows some of Winden’s living ghosts across two time periods, 1954 and 1987. As a police officer, Egon has dealings with the missing who are still alive: Helge, Ulrich and Mikkel. He’s a dying man who is trying to solve a mystery while he still has time. Claudia, the white devil-witch, is trying to save her daughter and her father, and in doing so sacrifices her own life.

Death magic is powerful magic, which Adam, who orders Claudia’s death, surely knows. But I don’t think he understands the difference between taking another’s life in order to achieve the murderer’s goals and a willing sacrifice of one’s own life for the sake of love. There’s a reason Claudia remains above ground at the end of the episode and Adam is buried deep in the underworld.

Adam’s long-term accomplices, Helge and Noah, grow more conflicted about the time war. We learn that Agnes is Noah’s sister and has been on both sides of the war, most recently siding with Claudia. In Ghosts, Claudia asks for a huge favor From Agnes, which will surely take an emotional toll. Agnes is somewhat of a ghost herself, since she usually projects the Femme Fatale image and keeps her true self in hiding.

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