HIS DARK MATERIALS – SEASON 3. We review premiere episodes

“His Dark Materials” returns with its third season.

Agnieszka Stasiowska

8 December 2022


We have waited two years for the conclusion of Lyra and Will’s story. On the threshold of the war against the Magisterium and the all-powerful Authority, the two teenagers must decide what is of highest value to them.

Preparations for the war


The beginning of the third and final season of His Dark Materials finds the youngsters in a not very interesting situation – Lyra is a prisoner of her mother, Will is searching desperately for her in all available worlds. Neither of them, however, is about to give up.

Lyra (Dafne Keen), despite the sleep-inducing drugs administered by the crafty Marisa (Ruth Wilson), makes feeble efforts to free herself from her toxic parent’s tutelage. Marisa, though she tries, is unable to convince anyone that all she really cares about is her daughter’s safety. We’ve known Ms. Coulter for some time now, and we know full well that there must be something else behind this sudden concern. Will (Amir Wilson) in his search for the girl receives unexpected help – his trail, lured by the flash of the Magic Knife, is followed by two angels. When Will adamantly refuses to join them until he frees Lyra, they reluctantly agree to support him on his journey.

Lord Asriel (James McAvoy) is gathering an army. His Council prepares a plan to fight the invincible Authority, who may not be as powerful as he would like them to think he is. Dr. Malone seeks answers to his questions, believing that this is the only way he will be able to help Lyra. Magisterium isn’t idle either, although Brother Pavel isn’t doing too well with the aletheiometer. Unluckily for him, someone appears on the scene who can provide him with new energy for his work… not necessarily by pleasant means.


The worst is yet to come...


Season three of the series promises to be eventful and spectacular. Powerful armies from all worlds will fight on Earth, in the Heavens and in the hereafter. And at the center of this turmoil is a not-so-little girl, called the new Eve, on whom a great deal depends and who will have to accomplish the seemingly impossible.

The first two episodes, while seeming rather quiet (Keen couldn’t show much as the drugged Lyra, Wilson as the lost, abandoned friend Will also acts rather at a distance), maintain the dark atmosphere familiar from the first seasons. Placed against the wall, the Magisterium is already openly preparing for war, not disguising its actions. Lord Asriel, on the other side of the barricade, is rallying supporters. As usual, the precarious position is that of his ex-wife, who always has only her own interests in mind. Her main goal is full control over Lyra, although it is rather obvious that she is not guided by a tender heart here – and here once again kudos to the wonderful Ruth Wilson, who is able to show several, completely different faces in one scene. The threat to the young heroes, therefore, comes from many directions and is almost tangible from the first scenes of the first episode. Given the strength of the opponent, one wonders whether even the combined armies of witches, armored bears and angels will be able to win this battle. And these emotions, along with a natural curiosity about the fate of the young pair of heroes, accompany us during the screening.

...And the best at the same time


The final season has eight episodes. After watching the first two, I am at ease with the rest. Dark Matter is an example of great cooperation between the author of the novel and filmmakers – it turns out that it is possible to make a screen adaptation relatively faithful to the original, which will satisfy both its loyal fans and viewers unfamiliar with the novel. So I’m looking forward to Lyra’s journey through the afterlife, the mysterious creatures Dr. Malone will encounter on her way, and the war with the Authority. And it looks like I won’t be disappointed.

Agnieszka Stasiowska

Agnieszka Stasiowska

She seeks different sensations in film, so she doesn't close herself off to any genre. She believes that every film has its own audience, and when it doesn't appeal to her, it is sure to strike a different, more inclined heart.

See other posts from this author >>>