His Dark Materials Season 1, Episode 5 Review

I’m torn between loving our introduction to Will and hating how rushed Billy’s storyline was.

tl;dw His Dark Materials Season 1, Episode 5 Recap

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-Or as the show’s writers seems to be saying: William is dead, long live William. And that boy is intriguing, no? He seems so tired and angry, yet in the noblest way… There’s a pride about his sorrow and isolation, that I hope gets explored.

-Our world is providing a neat little mystery. (Complete with unsubtle shots of a barely seen cat I can’t help but theorize over. Reminder: I’ve only read the first book.) Still feels annoyingly like it’s skipping ahead… I honestly wish I didn’t know that these scenes weren’t in the first book so I could judge the storyline -and how it fits with Lyra’s- on its own merit.

-Serafina and Coram’s reunion was were suitably heartbreaking to witness. There was love there and also the bitter taste of anger and grief too deep to look past. Farder’s fast becoming the character that can make me cry simply by crying. I honestly hope we get a spinoff about the witches, cause I can’t help but be fascinated by the powerful near-immortal creatures in every fantasy world I encounter. The creepy way they fly is just a bonus.

-This may be a personal issue, though I maintain the show’s done a poor job establishing the weight of the relationship between human and daemon with all its facets and social intricacies. This disconnect between the audience’s experience and the worldbuilding made the tragedy of Billy’s situation feel flat.

-I’m really feeling the absence of Mrs. Coulter this episode. Yes, her horrifying experiment is very much front and center, but I require sustenance and am offered the mere smell of lunch wafting from the kitchen.

-Lee seems to have matured ten years in the span of a few dozen minutes. I don’t know if it’s Lyra’s presence, a true depth under all his bluster, or the gut-churning details involving Billy’s dehumanization. Whatever the case may be I think they’re setting him up to be a hero despite himself and I’m very afraid.

-I rather enjoy how truly weird and obnoxious Lyra gets to be, and how everybody loves her because of it. Not so much because she’s destined to end destiny (and how metal is that, truly?), but for her odd qualities that are undoubtedly the product of being raised in an environment with too many adults compared to people her own age. Adults who liked to argue about knowing things and adults she very much wanted to impress or best in verbal combat. No, I’m not projecting too much on Lyra what are you talking about?

-I’m often floored by how beautiful certain shots are. Sincere congrats to the DP for giving me pretty things to look at while going through stills for the recap.

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