Jantje Friese and Baran bo Odar created the multilingual German epic period mystery-science fiction television series 1899. It debuted on Netflix on November 17, 2022.
It received mostly positive critical reviews, with praise for its casting, directing, cinematography, and acting, though its pacing was criticized as slow by some. The creators have plans for two additional seasons.
‘1899’ on Netflix: That Ending Explained and Your Questions Answered
If you’ve just finished 1899, the latest Netflix mystery show from the creators of Dark, you might still be perplexed by the ending. So let us try to figure things out.
The show appears to begin as a straightforward period piece with a hint of mystery. But as the show progresses, the complications mount, and viewers are reminded of the much-discussed drama Lost, which transitioned from a seemingly straightforward plane crash show to a sci-fi and supernatural mystery series.
The Plot Basics
The show takes place on the steamship Kerberos, which transports a group of people from London to New York. You’ll get Titanic vibes because some passengers are wealthy and travel first-class in massive private cabins, while others are stuck in second or third-class.
The characters are from all over the world and come from a variety of backgrounds. Viewers quickly discover that everyone has a secret and a reason for fleeing Europe for the New World. The show begins with Maura Franklin (Emily Beecham), a neurologist and one of the UK’s few female doctors, traveling alone.
Her brother, Ciaran (though his name is rarely mentioned), vanished four months ago, around the same time that another steamship from the same boat company, the Prometheus, vanished while at sea. That’s a promising start, to say the least.
Some Major Characters
There are a lot of passengers and crew in 1899, all with interesting backstories. However, the show introduces them gradually and distinctively, making it easy to keep them separate in your mind. Here are a few examples:
- Captain Eyk Larsen
- Tove and Family
- Daniel Solace
- Ramiro and Angel
- Ling Yi and Yuk Je
- Elliot, Aka the Boy
- Clémence and Lucien
- The Kerberos
What’s With That Ending?
Major spoilers ahead.
The eight complex episodes of 1899 gradually reveal the secret pasts of the people on board as well as the secrets of the Kerberos. If that were all there was to it, it’d be a satisfying but simplistic Agatha Christie-style story.
What is lost, will be found. 1899 is now streaming on Netflix! 🜃 https://t.co/HvxdBchMcL
— 1899 🜃 (@1899Netflix) November 17, 2022
Instead, this story desired to be “Lost” at sea. The missing Prometheus isn’t just a missing boat, strange supernatural and scientific events are taking place.
It’s All a Simulation
But, in the end, it is revealed that the entire ocean voyage was a simulation created by Maura, who has no recollection of creating it.
Daniel is Maura’s husband, and Elliot is their son. When Elliot died, Maura attempted to keep him alive by transferring his consciousness to the virtual world, where she and Daniel could spend time with him in a colorful, bunker-like playroom. And apparently brilliant Maura designed her simulation so that others with deceased loved ones could reunite with them.
Daniel is desperately trying to wake Maura up so that everyone can be freed. (“WAKE UP!” is a recurring theme at the start of each episode.) A key Maura has and the pyramid Elliot has will free everyone. However, Daniel has altered the exit codes so that they now reside in a different pyramid toy and Maura’s own wedding ring.
Maura’s Dad Isn’t Really the Mastermind
Maura’s father, Henry (Anton Lesser), the owner of the shipping company, is watching the simulation from his modern-day office. It appears at first that he created the simulation, but it was Maura who did so, and he is as helpless as the passengers.
It Was Her Missing Brother All Along
Remember Maura being concerned about her brother, Ciaran, who was allegedly lost on the Prometheus? He is the one who is keeping his sister, Maura, and their father, Henry, in the simulation.
‘lost’ in Space
When Maura finally awakens, she finds herself on a spaceship in the year 2099, along with the Kerberos passengers. Ciaran greets her with a menacing message, and a computer message mentions “Project Prometheus.”
As a result, the sibling battle for reality appears to be far from over.