All the Light We Cannot See – Season 1 Episode 1 Recap & Review

Episode 1

All the Light We Cannot See Episode 1 opens in 1944 with the Nazi occupation of the St. Malo area in France. We witness American planes flying over France, dropping bombs on Nazi strongholds. As the story opens, we meet Marie-Laure, our blind protagonist, who is trying to get in touch with her missing father and uncle, Etienne LeBlanc, by means of radio.

The focus then shifts to Werner, a young German soldier listening to Marie’s radio station and enjoying her reading of a Jules Verne novel titled 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea. A colleague of his reminds him that it is a capital offense to listen to French radio. Werner, however, points out that death awaits them no matter what. After this, they make their final preparations to die and say their goodbyes. Despite this, Werner makes it through the bombing unscathed.

Following that, we meet Reinhold von Rumpel, who is on the hunt for a precious gem. He approaches the proprietor of a local eatery with inquiries about a blind girl named Marie. However, Rumpel shoots him when he refuses to reveal any details regarding Marie. We also find out that the Nazis have locked the gates, making it impossible for French residents to leave as the United States drops bombs on their country.

We are taken to the past, and we get a peek into Marie and her formative years. Since she is blind, we learn that her father, Daniel LeBlanc, used a model of the city to show her the way around. Furthermore, he is said to be employed by the National History Museum. One day, he reveals to her the legend of the Sea of Flames, a fabled gem. He recounts to her the story of the stone, which claims that the bearer of the stone will have good luck. However, the cursed person who touches it will lose a loved one.

In the present, Marie is really hungry. So she visits a bakery in order to get some bread. At the bakery, she meets with her Uncle Etienne LeBlanc, who asks her to read particular chapters from a book so as to send messages to the Americans. The shopkeeper then informs Marie that a man is looking for her. So, Etienne has asked her to lock her doors at all times.

We are taken back in time to Werner’s childhood. We learn that he and his sister Jutta used to listen to a professor on the French radio channel, much like Marie.

The French people, who are asking Werner to open the gate in the present, curse him as he leaves. He then meets a senior who introduces him to a fellow soldier who is going to be joining Werner’s ranks. According to the senior officer, both Werner and the other soldier attended the National Institute of Berlin.

Werner is shielding the girl from being reported on television, and the other soldier finds this out at the bar. Werner decides to kill the soldier in order to save Marie from harm.

Meanwhile, Marie heads out to an underground tunnel, looking for oysters in order to get rid of her hunger. At this point, Rumpel catches her and asks her to spill the beans about the Sea of Flames. Marie assures him that she doesn’t know anything about it, but he’s threatening her with a gun. A gunshot signals the end of the episode, and we are left wondering what happened to Marie.

The Episode Review

The first episode takes place in August of 1944. Marie, within Nazi-occupied Saint-Malo, continues her radio show even as the city is bombed. A youthful German soldier named Werner tunes in.

The primary characters and their motivations are introduced, and the episode lays out the groundwork for the rest of the plot. While the concept is captivating, the presentation is muddled, and the execution is wobbly.

The actors, however, are outstanding in their roles. In particular, Aria Mia Loberti’s performance as the grown-up Marie is brilliant. Louis Hofmann and Lars Eidinger are also impressive in their parts.

The episode as a whole was fascinating and entertaining. However, a lot of details were provided in a short amount of time, which is somewhat of a concern. Apart from that, the episode was fantastic.


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