The Final Fight
The Season 1 finale to Dark Crystal: Age Of Resistance begins with Deet and Rian contemplating whether anything will ever be like it was before. Touching her hand, Rian offers the faint glimmers of romance, which immediately peter out as Deet pulls away and gets back to work. However, her hands begin pulsating purple as The Darkening appears to stir inside her.
Meanwhile at the castle, with war upon them, The Emperor attempts to wield The Darkening while Chamberlain takes advantage of the Gruenak, refusing to let them leave.
Fara returns to Rian with her forces and joins them for the war ahead. They tell him about Aughra’s sacrifice and from here, we’re greeted to a montage segment as the Skeksis and Gelfling both prepare for the fight ahead. Deep in the chasms of the lab, the Scientist’s secret weapon, the modified Hunter, returns to life and hurries to join the other Skeksis in Stone-In-The-Wall.
Dressed in thick armour, the Skeksis arrive at the town, coming face to face with the Gelfling. Rian steps forward with the Dual Glaive and goes toe to toe with the General, who toys with him as he knocks him to the ground. Underestimating his courage, Rian plunges his sword into the Skeksis’ stomach, prompting the blade to ring out as the General begs for forgiveness and runs away.
This prompts the rest of the Skeksis to charge into battle, with the female Gelflings taking to the sky and dropping bombs. Unfortunately, Fara is hit by a rogue Skeksis sword and meets an unfortunate fate, as she spins out and lands hard on the ground. Meanwhile at the castle, the Scientist interrupts the Gruenaks as they peel off the strings from their sewn mouths and begin to rise up. Unfortunately he doesn’t take too kindly to their betrayal and kills them, bludgeoning one while knocking the other into the crystal.
Back on the battlefield, Chamberlain finds the General and kills him, telling him he took his seat and he’ll never forgive him for that. Unfortunately, although one Skeksis is defeated, another rises up as the Hunter charges into the chaos and grabs Rian, holding him in his grasp. With all seemingly lost, Archer falls to his doom, knowing full well he’s linked with the Skeksis. As he tumbles to the ground, The Hunter shrivels and disintegrates, replaced inexplicably by Mother Aughra who becomes reborn.
As the Spitters surround the Skeksis, all seems lost for the bird-like antagonists until the Emperor reveals his staff and shows the true extent of The Darkening. He sends crackles of purple lightning flying across the land while Deet attempts to hold it back, much to the shock of the Gelfling behind her. After a tense duel, the Skeksis retreat as the Royal Advisor for the Skeksis explodes. In a lovely touch to the earlier details in the episode, Elder Cadia shows up at the last minute, uttering “hello!” to all around him as the Gelfling celebrate their win.
In the aftermath of the fight, Brea finds the crystal shard; the key to finishing the Skeksis once and for all and where we begin the film. Consumed by The Darkening, Rian tries to chase after Deet but she blocks the way and disappears underground, while Aughra closes things out with a rousing speech about the Gelfling victory.
During the show’s epilogue, we see the Scientist working on a new creature at the laboratory, a fearsome warrior to tackle the Gelfling, while the crystal ascends to the main chamber. With the Skeksis left licking their wounds, the Scientist appears, revealing the beetle-like creatures from the 1982 film.
The big question here will inevitably be whether Netflix renew this for a second season. In a way, Age Of Resistance has the perfect end, and an end I wish more shows of its kind adopted. As a stand-alone piece, Age Of Resistance is perfectly constructed, with a satisfying arc for all our characters and a self-contained story that builds progressively toward the end. There’s some nice twists along the way and the voice acting throughout has been nothing short of masterful.
At the same time, there’s some pretty big questions left unanswered surrounding the crystal shard and Deet’s consumed darkening. Given the early timeline, it’s fair to say there’s quite a bit of history that could be explored, leading right up to the entire world being ravaged and destroyed. I won’t lie, I was expecting a bloodbath at the end of this series, given what we know about the film, and the Gelfling victory certainly feels bittersweet.
For me, I’m in two minds about whether this should be renewed. The series itself has been near-perfection and a great example of how to construct a compelling prequel whilst sticking to all the elements that made the original so good. This series has certainly been one of the best of the year and a technical achievement for all involved in its construction. Perhaps it should remain that way, rather than multiple seasons dragging this out.
What do you think? Would you like to see Age Of Resistance renewed for a second season? Let us know in the comments below!