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The Dark Crystal: Age of Resistance
The Dark Crystal The Age of Resistance.
This saga is dark. Very dark. Like Power Rangers fan fiction by James Van Der Beek dark. However if you have seen the original movie, you know from the beginning that this is not going to end well for the Gelflings.
What this series does show is the true nature of the Skeksis. They are arrogant, power hungry aliens from another world who have lied to and hoodwinked everyone on Thra including the Great Aughra. It is her mistake of letting the Skeksis be the guardians of the crystal so she can explore the galaxy that starts this entire fiasco.
Take a step back and look at the original movie. It was a masterful piece of storytelling and innovative use of puppetry in movie making. It was an entire world that had been created in the minds of the Jim Henson Workshop. Henson was riding high with the Muppets and to take such a risk and make The Dark Crystal in the first place, just goes to show his gift that thankfully he could share.
That same world is recreated here. Podlings, Skeksis, Gelflings, Land Striders, Fizzgigs, they are all back. The Creature shop has successfully recreated that entire world and without the use of CGI.
What we get is ten hours of that world. However it was difficult for me to watch because I know the fates of all the main characters. Remember Aughra speaking to Jen “But Gelfling all dead! Garthim kill them all! You can't be Gelfling! You look like Gelfing... smell like Gelfing... maybe you are Gelfing!”
Jen with the Mystic: UrSu: At the time when three suns meet... Jen: Master! What's wrong? UrSu: You are in danger, Gelfling... and I must leave you. Jen: Leave me? Master, no! UrSu: Gelfling, I have told you of the Skeksis. Jen: The Skeksis killed my mother and father. UrSu: The story runs deeper than you know, and you are part of it. Jen: I don't understand. UrSu: The Skeksis will vow to destroy you... for the prophecy says you must find the shard. The Crystal shard. Jen: The Crystal shard?! UrSu: To save our world, Gelfling, you must find the shard... before the three suns meet. If not, Skeksis rule forever.
This takes place before all that. The Gelfling are many. They have 7 realms. The evil of the Skeksis makes them unite but not at first. It is that division that is their undoing. I think the most important note here is that we should not blindly follow any leader. Loyalty is earned. Not given. Several characters trust the Skeksis, they abide by Aughra’s decision to let them guard the Crystal of Truth.
What I do like to see is that the early comments are all giving the series and the characters high praise. New audiences are discovering this entire world and getting as much enjoyment from it as those who did in 1982. Although it it is very bleak and at times very morose, it does draw directly from the source material. It can be a bit too dark at times for my tastes. The Skeksis are evil and until we get to the events of the movie, all the victories we are hoping for against them will never come to pass. Time after time the Skeksis win their battles. Just when you think the Gelflings are getting ahead the Skeksis knock them two steps back.
That I think may be the undoing of the series. It can only have a sad ending. Knowing that, it is very disconcerting to watch. Not to say that there are not some surprises along the way. We are introduced to new species we have not seen before and new characters. One thing I did not like, is that they are very upfront about what is a surprise ending to the original movie. Several character’s stories revolve around the connection between the Skeksis and the Mystics.
We also see further development of older characters like the Chamberlain. He turns out to be the most devious of them all, but we knew that from the original movie.
If you have not seen the original movie I would suggest watching the series first and then the movie. I would also not recommend getting attached to any of the characters except the Skeksis who are in the movie. That was the biggest failing in the movie for me. The new characters like the Hunter, the Archer, The General. While great to watch, because it is true to the source material, you already know their fates.
It is a brilliantly done series and it feels just like the movie. I would recommend it, just go into it and try not to get too attached to any characters.
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