I Am You
Episode 8 of Katla Season 1 begins with Mikael casually waltzing back into Hotel Vik again. He immediately confronts Rakel, asking just why she left him. Eventually Rakel and Darri give him some food and listen to the boy retell the story we’ve already seen play out with the couple he murdered on the road.
After getting some food down him, the couple drive off together. Darri demands he hand over the Stanley knife though, which he eventually agrees to. After all, we don’t want a repeat of what happened before!
As Rakel and Darri allow Mikael to play by the shore, they discuss the nature of these changelings and their personalities. Darri believes that these are born out of their own experiences and memories. Given their history is that of pain and anger, it seems to be reflected in Mikael. As the couple sit together, they both make peace that whatever this child is, it’s not their son. Together, they lead Mikael out to the water and drown him.
However, Katla continues to rumble and groan as more bodies under the glaciers start to stir. Lava is spat from Katla’s mouth as our characters try to adjust to their new normal.
While older Gunhild is packing her things up, Tor arrives at the door frazzled and needing to talk. He tells her Bjorn’s condition is not her fault and what she did with the attempted abortion had no impact on him.
While Gunhild has made peace and is ready to go home, Bjorn meanwhile wants to stay. He wants to get to know his Father better and reassures her, reminding Gunhild that there’s a clinic nearby. And an active volcano that could explode at any moment, but there we go.
Tor eventually heads home where Grima pedals the changeling story to her father. She reveals the truth about the forensic report too, backing up the idea that these doppelgangers are the things of folklore.
Gisli heads out to find Magnea, taking the older Magnea with him. Only, Gisli is outsmarted and left behind as the two versions of Magnea ride off together in the police car. He hesitates and decides against firing.
Back home, Grima and other Grima come to blows over the new world order. Other Grima has settled right in and made this home her own. Our Grima is still haunted by the ghosts of her past though and unable to let go. Given Other Grima hasn’t experienced that, she’s instead embracing the love they have and not taking it for granted.
Grima is determined to make things right and sits with her other self at the table, deciding to leave it up to fate over who survives. As they both load up the gun and prepare to fire, both versions hold the pistol to their neck and fire. This goes round and round, eventually resulting in the changeling Grima blowing her brains out and dying. Grima buries her in the ash outside and leaves her there.
Realizing his Father has switched Magnea’s cancer pills for herbal ones, Einar immediately heads to the church and confronts Gisli. He’s furious, and eventually smashes him over the head, leaving him a battered mess on the floor. When Gisli awakens, he speaks to the Lord and begs for forgiveness. Well, they’re going to need it given the ash clouds from the volcano continue to swell and grow.
At the hospital, Gunhild arrives to see her younger self but she’s gone. The lights begin flickering and Gunhild stares in the mirror, smiling and seemingly understanding.
Less understandable however, is what comes next. As the series comes to a close, the Earth groans and grumbles, paving way for numerous ash-covered changelings to rise up and head toward the town. What could this mean? Who knows, stay tuned for a possible season 2!
The Episode Review
And there we have it. Another dreaded Netflix cliffhanger for a mystery series that hasn’t given us any answers beyond “it’s a meteorite.”
I get that these mystery box shows need to keep some semblance of mystery and intrigue going but it’s enough to keep that hook swirling around the motivations of these changelings and what they’re doing.
It’s also a little suspect that no one from outside Iceland has bothered to show up or even catalogue what’s happening with Katla, especially with an eruption like this. With the added inclusion of characters returning from the dead, you’d expect more people to get involved.
However, the finale does show some of our characters making their choices regarding their changeling issues. Rakel and Darri finally find themselves on the same side, drowning their changeling son so he doesn’t hurt anyone else.
Meanwhile, changeling Grima meets a grizzly fate while Magnea is still at large with her older counterpart. Asa has just wandered into the water and she’s presumably dead while Gunhild has disappeared too.
There’s lots of unresolved questions and not a lot of answers to go on either. However, this moody slow burn bows out with the tantalizing prospect of a second season but lots of question marks over whether that will come to fruition or not.