Is Netflix’s ‘Dark’ Worth a Watch?
“The question is not where it’s when.”
The first German Netflix show ‘Dark’ can be described as a more mature ‘Stranger Things‘ plus time travel. The 10-episode-long sci-fi noir series was released on the 1st December 2017 and was created by Baran bo Odar and Jantje Friese.
When the 11-year-old Mikkel disappears in the forest of the small town of Winden, everyone is on edge. During the police search, they find a dead body of another boy. His eyes are burned, and he is wearing 80s clothes. Only slowly the mysteries of the small town that ties back to both 1986 and 1953 are revealed.
The show starts with the chilling theme song “Goodbye” by Apparat feat. Soap&Skin accompanied by both beautiful and creepy imagery that you want to listen to every following episode.
Due to the many characters and storylines, the viewer can experience the history of this town and is given an inside in how the different families evolved over the decades. The good and especially the unfortunate events of the town are shown and give the whole show a very realistic vibe.
But the fact that there are so many characters makes it also difficult to determine which ones are the main protagonists. A large number of people as well as because some characters have up to three actors portraying them, the viewer can get confused very quickly. From the many characters that appear in the three timelines, my personal favorites were Jonas Kahnwald in 2019, Ines Kahnwald in 1986 and Egon Tiedemann in 1953.
The music and editing stand out. Especially the 80s songs in the storyline that takes place in 1986 give the show a unique spin. This series is in German with English subtitles. As a native German speaker the language wasn’t a problem at all, but for others, some dialogs might be hard to understand at the first viewing. There is an English-dubbed version of the show, but in my opinion, the original language is nearly always superior. The main antagonist didn’t have as many interactions with the other people of the town as I wished he had. At some moments in the first half of the season, the plot can also move quite slowly and even drag. But once you know all the faces a bit better, you are entirely emerged in the story and can’t stop watching.
The town of Winden – a play of the German word “Twist” – is a real village in the South of Germany, even though the history of the town, as it is explained in the series, is fictional. The inclusion of the real 33-lunar-year cycle was also fascinating. Because a lunar year is only 354 days long, there is a difference between the lunar and solar calendar. Every 33 years, the calendars are synchronized again. Just then, according to the show, time travel between the year 2019 and other years that are 33 years before and after this date is possible.
‘Dark’ Final Verdict –
This series is a grim tale of the people in a small town, their secrets, and struggles plus a time travel aspect. With the second season already announced and probably being released in 2019, it will be interesting to see what the next story about the people of Winden.
RATING: 4/5 Stars Written by ReviewGeek