Dark: Life and Death (Leben und Tod)
June 27, 2020 9:22 PM - Season 3, Episode 5 - Subscribe

In 2020, a visitor delivers a warning to Claudia. The day before the apocalypse, Jonas begins to question Eva's motives.

*Claudia buries Regina's body in the woods, with a wooden-cross grave-marker. "Why do we die? What is death? Could we escape it if we knew when to expect it? Is the time of our departure predetermined? Our dying, part of an endless clockwork? We all have one truth in common. We are born. And we die. No matter what path we take in between."

*2052 Adam-future. Adam tells Charlotte that her path will always lead her here to Elisabeth and him. He asks if she's made her decision, that there's only one day left to the apocalypse, and they can untie the knot forever. She asks if he'll see it all the way through, and he says Eva will never achieve her goal, that her world doesn't deserve to be saved any more than theirs.

*2019 Martha-world. One day until the apocalypse. Jonas in bed, dreams of his Martha beside him, wakes to see other-Martha sleeping. She wakes and they get dressed. Jonas says they have to get to the power plant, that there's not much time. Downstairs, Katharina berates Martha for disappearing the day before, and asks who Jonas is. Martha embraces her, then says she has to go and leaves.

*In 1987 at the asylum, adult Katharina tells Ulrich her plan for breaking him out that evening. Ulrich says he's sorry for everything.

*In 1987 young Charlotte is in grandpa Tannhaus' shop, and asks him if it's possible to go back in time. He says that his place is not in the past or future but here with her, that she's old enough for him to tell her the story -- he shows her a photo of his son and wife holding his granddaughter. He says that they were killed in a car crash, and the night it happened he awoke to a noise in the shop. Two women were there, carrying a bundle that was baby Charlotte. They said that everything would be taken from him and at the same time he would be given everything. Then he got the call that a truck had crashed his son's car off the bridge, and only his and his wife's body were found. He gives her the only thing baby Charlotte arrived with - the engraved pocket-watch. Charlotte runs away from the shop.

*2019 Martha-world. At the power plant, Charlotte is in Aleksander's office (the blackmail plastic bag still on his desk) and asks if he archives the shift schedules, she wants to know about 1986.

*In the abandoned police station, Claudia hears a noise and grabs a rebar to investigate, only to come fact-to-face with a same-age but non-apocalyptic-looking version of herself. Fashionable-Claudia says she's from another world, that there are two groups fighting for supremacy in time travel, and she wants Claudia to join her on the side of light, Eva's side. Says she shouldn't trust Jonas, he's on the side of shadow. She explains that each time the passage was opened, cesium residue was left behind, expanding exponentially ad infinitum. She says that Adam can never be allowed to untie the knot, that Claudia must lead Jonas, Noah, Elisabeth down the same path again and again. She gives her the triquetra notebook to guide her and says she must guide Jonas and later defy him. She says she'll see her again soon, then activates the gold sphere time machine and disappears.

*Peter and Elisabeth go through checkpoint to look for Charlotte & Franziska in the photos of the dead, but Elisabeth stops and says she's not going to do this anymore, that they must be dead even if they're not on the photo wall or why wouldn't they have come looking for them. She goes back to the RV alone.

*2019 Martha-world. Jonas clips through the power plant fence and Martha asks what's in the barrels. Jonas says he doesn't know, but that there was an accident in 1986, and the substance in the barrels is what remained after, and what makes time travel possible. The barrels are being brought back today, so they just need to wait for nightfall. The fence scratches Martha face as she sneaks through, and Jonas recognizes it as the same scratch on the Martha that brought him from his world. If this Martha becomes that Martha, then can they change anything? He realizes that Eva may have set him up to save her world and not his. He says he needs to get the truth from Eva and leaves the power plant, and Martha follows.

*1987 young Charlotte at sits at the bus stop, lets the bus pass. The passenger who exited asks Charlotte if he can walk to Winden. He's new to town; his mother died, and shortly before she did told him his father lives in Winden - it's young Peter Doppler.

*2019 Martha-world. Charlotte comes home to find Elisabeth skipped school. Charlotte tells Peter that the day Mads disappeared Helge was working at the plant until 6pm and Mads disappeared at 6:21. Peter insists Helge was with him all that evening, but Charlotte is convinced that he's involved. She mentions Ulrich's suspicions, and from Peter's reaction he seems to know about their affair.

*In the post-apocalypse RV, Elisabeth returns to find a stranger inside, who knocks her out. She regains consciousness to find he's tied her up. He tries to rape her but is interrupted by Peter's return. They fight, and Elisabeth cuts herself free, but the stranger kills Peter and then Elisabeth kills the stranger.

*2052 Adam-future. Elisabeth, Charlotte, and Franziska embrace. Charlotte and Elisabeth radiation-suit up and Adam generates the god-particle sphere.

*2019 Martha-world. Outside the caves, Martha asks Jonas what if it's true, that only one of their worlds can survive. From his silence she says he's already chosen his world. He tells her he didn't want any of this, but she asks about last night. He says it was wrong, that he's wrong here, but Martha kisses him, and says "Wrong, huh?" at his kissing back.

*In 1987, adult Katharina follows her mother Helene in the woods. She tries to steal her keycard at knifepoint, but it all goes wrong. She calls her "mom" in the struggle, drops the knife, and manages to knock her out with a rock. But while Katharina searches through the purse, Helene gets back up and attacks and kills Katharina, saying she's not her mother, that Katharina is from hell and the devil sent her, that she's not real, that she got rid of her. Afterwards, Helene fills Katharina's backpack with rocks and drags her body into the lake.
*Ines and Mikkel return home.
*Helene comes home, and young Katharina is alarmed by her bloody and wild appearance and shows concern. But Helene sees a hickey on her neck, slaps her and calls her a slut not worth the name she was given, says she should have gotten rid of her too, and Katharina crumples to the floor crying.

*Music-montage - At the asylum, Ulrich waits where Katharina told him to but she's late. At the lake, Helene's Saint Christopher necklace torn off in the struggle remains in the sand. 2019 Martha-world Charlotte looks at Ulrich's empty desk. E.G. Tannhaus looks at picture of Charlotte, as she returns to the shop. Young Peter Doppler goes to the cabin. Jonas-world Peter is still dead in the RV. Martha-world Peter sits home with sleeping Elisabeth. Elisabeth in the RV is found by young Noah. Claudia reads the trequetra journal.

*Jonas takes Martha into the Adam & Eve room; Martha asks what it is and Jonas says it's what she'll become. Eva enters and says "And thus everything starts over again." Jonas accuses her of lying about saving both worlds, that they can only save one, or is that a lie too. He demands to be sent back to his world, but she says it can't be done. Middle-age desert-future Martha arrives, and another young but freshly-scar-faced Martha who shoots Jonas. The 3 of them leave, and Jonas dies in Martha's arms on the family-tree floor-plaques, as he gives her the Saint Christopher necklace.
posted by oh yeah! (13 comments total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
I should have seen Jonas' death coming, from the foreshadowing in Martha's dream, and the clue of adult-Jonas-in-1888 having no memory of other-world-Martha, but it still caught be by surprise.

Only 3 episodes to go, and no idea how this will resolve. (Though I feel like Hannah out there in 1954 is still a wild card.)
posted by oh yeah! at 6:08 AM on June 28, 2020

Holy shit, that scene with Katarina's mom!
posted by whir at 8:53 AM on June 28, 2020 [3 favorites]

This end of this episode gave me exactly what I said I wanted to happen in Season 3 before it started, down to a particular character saying a particular line over another particular character's dead body.
posted by kyrademon at 10:54 AM on June 29, 2020

So when you go to a different time, does that create another copy of you in a different time? So that you can essentially have as many copies of yourself around as time machines? There were 4 Marthas, did the little girl also have a scar that neither original Martha or backwards Martha has? Or are there 5 universes and these are all Marthas from those other universes?

Is 1888 Jonas the one from the supposedly Jonas-free universe but was stolen as a baby and raised somewhere else? Or did they actually figure out how to raise the dead? If 1888 Jonas is our original Jonas then how can he not remember anything original Jonas is doing?

And props to Claudia for being way more badass with time than Jonas. It does help that she’s apparently a nuclear physicist but still. The ladies got the time travel down pat!

(Did anyone see Coherence? I’m starting to feel like the people in that movie and want to start assigning glow sticks to characters.)
posted by LizBoBiz at 10:29 AM on June 30, 2020 [1 favorite]

And how annoying must it be as a teenager that even your future self is essentially saying “you’ll understand when you’re older”
posted by LizBoBiz at 10:39 AM on June 30, 2020 [2 favorites]

As Jonas lay dying and the camera pulls back and up, I realized that the two family trees look like the two wings of an angel.
posted by Mogur at 6:01 AM on July 1, 2020 [2 favorites]

The mirror image of Martha shooting Jonas and Jonas shooting Martha is quite poetic.

Did Martha's scar switch sides at some point? The original alt-Martha scar was on her left cheek, but naive alt-Martha and Jonas-shooting alt-Martha it is on her right cheek. The older Martha's I couldn't tell.

The tiles in Eva's secret club house might contain spoilers - the ones for Hannah and Egon connect to Silja Tiedemann.
posted by autopilot at 3:54 PM on July 1, 2020

Yeaaaaaaah I have no clue what’s happening. I can just barely keep the family relations straight in Universe With Jonas. In Universe Without Jonas, I’m lost.
posted by computech_apolloniajames at 8:15 PM on July 2, 2020

I don't think anything shown on screen in the show itself can be considered a spoiler. Some interesting things I noticed after perusing the family trees for a bit:
  • Hannah and Egon's child is Silja, 2054 Elisabeth's compatriot who set Jonas free and helped him to travel away from 2054 in S2
  • Silja and Bartosz have a child, and it's Agnes Nielsen
  • Silja is the child of Bartosz's great grandfather (Egon), making them first cousins twice removed (I think)
  • Jonas may have kissed his aunt (Martha), but previously she was dating her great great grandfather (Bartosz)

posted by Cogito at 3:05 PM on July 6, 2020 [3 favorites]

I think Martha’s scar switches sides when she is in Jonas’s universe.
posted by rikschell at 9:48 PM on July 31, 2020

What a terrible end for Katharina. I really felt for her character the whole time; she came from a terrible background and largely managed to rise above her abusive past with her own children. She was horrible to Hannah and Regina as teenagers, largely as a way to escape the abuse her own mother heaps on her. Then her boyfriend is falsely accused of raping her, and she can’t ever hit true escape velocity from his scumbaggery. Martha and Magnus are angry at her for falling into her grief after her youngest kid and husband disappear without a trace, so I suppose one can tag her with emotional neglect towards her own children. But man, those final scenes really made my heart hurt for her. What a cycle to have to relive over and over again. Nobody deserves that.
posted by lilac girl at 10:03 PM on August 2, 2021 [1 favorite]

Yes, having finished the whole series a few months ago, it might be the sadness of Katharina's story that stayed with me the most, far more than any of the character and surprise-relative machinations.
posted by chimpsonfilm at 7:45 AM on August 4, 2021

Yeah, Katharina's death was just so freaking sad. And for Helene to mistake Adult Katharina as the devilish reincarnation of her aborted child... yeesh. Tragedy of Sophoclean proportions. I also felt for Ulrich, who may be a womanizing shit but doesn't necessarily deserve to live out the last 40 years of his life in a psychiatric facility. Again, tragic irony: the man whom every woman wanted is left abandoned, first intentionally by Hannah, then inadvertently by Katharina.
posted by Saxon Kane at 3:31 PM on August 15, 2022 [1 favorite]

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