Episode 2 of Katla Season 1 begins in the past, with Grima and her team preparing to race away from Katla’s eruption. Among those people is Katla’s sister, Asa, who winds up stuck thanks to her snowmobile breaking.
In the present, Grima finds her ash-covered sister. Asa passes out, prompting her to be rushed into hospital for treatment. Once there, Gisli shows and hears her statement. Asa can’t remember what happened, although she believes someone stuck her with a hypodermic needle.
After hearing this statement, Gisli believes she’s been taken and possibly held captive. Tor arrives at the hospital when he hears the news though and greets his daughter, embracing Asa warmly.
The researchers we saw last episode rock up on shore. They’re greeted by a man named Leifur, who has experience collecting samples. Darri introduces himself as the group settle in for the night. Eyja is worried, believing there could be an increase in the pyroclastic cloud. If that happens, we could be looking at another incident like Pompeii.
Their stop-gap for the time being happens to be Bergrun’s hotel, and she interrupts the conversation to claim science can’t always explain everything. Is that a meta nod toward the series as a whole? We shall see.
Eventually the group continue on, finding the camp and making it their base of operations to begin studying samples. However, more alarming news comes in in the form of Gunhild. Apparently she’s pregnant but she had no knowledge of this. Things are about to get weirder though, as the older Gunhild heads up to Iceland and, specifically, Vik.
She checks in with Bergrun at the hotel, as a cagey chat between the two ensues. They discuss the past and specifically Bergrun’s family. She doesn’t give too much away but simply reveals that she went to Sweden.
It doesn’t take long before she meets the hospitalized Gunhild. In order to prove her worth, Gunhild tells her younger self to talk about Tor. Well, pointing out the baby she’s carrying, Gunhild reveals that this is actually Tor’s.
Next, Gunhild heads up to the farm to see Tor in person. After meeting Einar, she drops the bombshell reveal about the younger Gunhild and her pregnancy.
Asa is eventually taken back home again, where she winds up reading her scrapbook and sees her own obituary. Something is going on with her, and that much is especially apparent when she heads out and manages to convince a crow to hop onto her hand.
These strange occurrences continue to get weirder. However, it seems like this isn’t the first time Katla has erupted. According to Bergrun, back in 1311 it exploded but a girl and a dog were both found within the ash. Back then, the residents were convinced that they were changelings.
When Asa and Grima eventually head home after hitting the road for a while, they find older Gunhild sitting at the dinner table. Grima is not happy to see her though, cursing her out and wondering what she’s doing.
As the episode comes to a close, Darri realizes he’s not alone in the research lab. He finds another ash-covered character lying in bed. As he opens his eyes, he looks up at Darri and says “Hi Daddy,”
The Episode Review
With two more survivors found and Bergrun’s story starting to ring true, could these really be changelings? We’ve already seen some devil iconology in the form of her tarot cards and lava would naturally feed into this as well. Then again, there could be a more simpler explanation that we’re not seeing right now.
It’s certainly a tantalizing mystery though, and this episode serves to deeper those character ties while allowing the returned characters scope to explore their past.
Seeing these two iterations of Gunhild together is a definite highlight, while the sins of a father seem to be coming back to haunt Tor.
Overall though this is a very moody, atmospheric slow-burn and the ingredients are certainly here for an enticing series to follow. Whether Katla can make good on its premise and deliver some solid answers near the end however, remains to be seen.