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Netflix Dark Season 2 Episode 7 Recap: The White Devil


[L-R]: Lisa Vicari as MARTHA, Andreas Pietschmann as STRANGER JONAS 

Dark is one of the best Netflix original series to date. To see a description of the show and all of my episode recaps, go here.

In the last episode, Jonas traveled back to 2019 – the day of the Nielsen anniversary party and the day his father committed suicide. In Jonas' eyes, this is the last day he knew happiness. The tone of the show changed temporarily to a time of innocence and enjoyment of life. Yet Jonas discovers that even when he tries to do good, he only ends up causing the very thing he hoped to avoid. This pattern repeats itself in the rest of the show. The best intentions only make the inevitable damage that much harder to bear.


Episode 7 The White Devil

The episode begins with a voiceover: "People are peculiar creatures. All their actions are driven by desire, their characters forged by pain. As much as they might try to suppress the pain, to repress desire, they cannot liberate themselves from eternal servitude to their feelings. As long as the storm rages within them, they can find no peace. Not in life, not in death. And so, day after day, they will do all that must be done. Pain is their ship, desire their compass, all that humankind is capable of."

During this narration, we see a montage of characters thinking about the last time they saw their objects of desire. In the Sic Mundus room, Adam looks at an image of Martha in the white dress, like she wore at the anniversary party. Strange Jonas sleeps while Hannah watches next to his bed holding the suitcase with the time machine, her thoughts lingering to Ulrich. She's dressed in heels and an outfit that could fit in the 1950s. Ulrich is in the outfit he wore when she last saw him. Martha looks at the St. Christopher pendant and imagines Jonas in the yellow raincoat with blood on his lip from the skirmish with Bartosz. Katharina imagines Mikkel wearing the skeleton costume. Lastly, we see Adam looking at a now empty chair, gazing at the St. Christopher pendant in his hand.

[L-R]: Louis Hofmann as JONAS, Lisa Vicari as MARTHA
 
It's June 26, 1954, one day until the apocalypse. At the police station, Egon and Daniel Kahnwald listen to the autopsy report from yet another reliable Winden forensic specialist. The woman was 5'7" and probably 75-80 years old. The cause of death was a shot to the chest. They have her clothing and possessions: black shoes and military-style garb, plus an intriguing dial with numbers around the side. The eyes are notable because she has heterochromia. Egon looks on in interest at this detail the most, thinking of his daughter.

Egon reports that the woman came to see him at the police station on the day Helge reappeared. He remembers she was confused and not altogether there and that she apologized to him. Daniel theorizes that the woman is Ulrich's accomplice. He suggests that Egon talk to Helge and see if Helge recognizes the woman. Egon seems hesitant to follow this order.

Lastly, the forensic specialist mentions that Claudia's body is highly contaminated with radiation. He demonstrates with a Geiger counter. She must have been exposed to radiation for a long time to get these types of readings. Daniel speculates that maybe the woman was a radiographer and helped with X-rays as a career.

In 1987, Claudia reports some findings in a tape recorder. In this clever and quick character interaction, we see the seeds being planted of the historian that would one day record tapes that Jonas would find about the apocalypse. The data indicates that the particle regularly decays into two protons (does she mean the God particle?), at a mass of 125 gigaelectronvolts. In one case, however, it decayed into four muons.

Claudia's assistant enters the office, surprised to see Claudia at work already. Claudia admits she lost track of time. She asks what day it is, and the assistant reports June 26. She looks at the newspaper clipping that reports Egon's body was found on this day. This compels her to make a quick exit. She has no time for the meeting with the French. Aside: Claudia has a more natural look today. She is usually so put together with the latest fashions and pristine makeup. Her mind is on other matters.

Clausen examines a photo of him and his brother
 
In 2020, Jonas wakes up to find Hannah, as well as his time machine gone. His mother has abandoned him and stolen his things, leaving him stranded. We see the ghost of teenage Jonas here, left alone to fend for himself. Meanwhile, Hannah prepares to enter the caves, suitcase in hand. She's wearing a blue skirt, transitioning from passion to duty.

Katharina lifts her shirt sleeve to see her tattoo: K + U, a reminder of the vows she and Ulrich made to one another. She also looks at the cave map and the secret door indicated.

At the Doppler house, Charlotte shows the Polaroid photo of Noah holding her as a baby to Peter. She shares that it all has to do with her. That Noah said the world would end tomorrow and that only the people in the bunker will survive. He also told her that her mother is alive. Charlotte looks vulnerable. Peter has no idea how to comfort her.

At the police station, Clausen looks at a photo of a younger version of himself (with an unfortunate moustache), sitting next to a young man, presumably his brother. Justyna Jankowski enters to give Clausen the information he's requested form the Marburg passport office. There's only one Aleksander Kohler. Clausen gets happy and says, "And then the eyes saw, the ears heard and nothing remained concealed." Justyna recognizes this as a Freud quote. Clausen dismisses her. Justyna seems to be the new Woller.

[L-R]: Carlotta von Falkenhayn as ELISABETH, Moritz Jahn as MAGNUS, Lisa Vicari as MARTHA, Paul Lux as BARTOSZ, Gina Stiebitz as FRANZISKA
 
Elsewhere in town, the teen team talk about if they should tell the adults what they have discovered. Magnus votes yes, as well as Franziska. Bartosz isn't sure that's the best idea. Martha, gazing at the St. Christopher pendant, only has thoughts for Jonas, who might be nearer than she thinks. Bartosz snaps at Martha that this is her only thought, but Martha gives it to him right back. She lashes out furiously and cruelly. She's pissed that Bartosz kept this information from them. And furthermore, she tells him that he's not welcome in the group anymore. As far as she's concerned, there never was a "we." Martha seems unnecessarily harsh to Bartosz. She seems to place all the blame for her heartache on him. He's an easy target because he's here. She ends up walking away from everyone.

In 1954, Egon goes to visit Helge. Greta Doppler warns that Helge is tired and can't talk long. Egon gets right to the point and asks Helge if he has seen Claudia. The photo he holds is of her corpse, which seems an unfortunate thing to show a child. But I guess, Egon figures Helge has seen it all by now.

At first, Helge says nothing, but eventually he tells Egon that, "He told me about her – The White Devil." This gets Egon's attention since he has heard this term before. Egon looks shocked at first but realizes his intensity may be too much. He tries again with a softer approach: "Tell me about the White Devil." Helge says that she wants to kill everyone. Egon tries to assure him that she's dead and can't kill anyone. Helge just says, "But she hasn't even started yet."

Julika Jenkins as CLAUDIA 1987
 
In 1987, Claudia goes to visit her dad at his apartment. She wants to know if he will move in with them. She looks flustered. Claudia tries to play it off like she's relaxed when she's anything but. Egon smiles at her concern and care for him, but he's not ready to move right this second. In fact, he has to go to a doctor's office to get his first chemo treatment. Claudia wants to go with him. Egon seems really happy that she's taking an interest in him. It's almost a little sad. Old people really do love their kids.

In 2020, Clausen talks to Alexander. He's accompanied by Woller, who hands Alexander a paper with the passport record for Alexander Kohler. Clausen points out that according to the passport information, Alexander is the wrong height to be Aleksander Kohler. This minute detail gives Clausen the excuse he needs to arrest Aleksander.

Across town, Stranger Jonas looks at the photos Hannah has laid out on the kitchen table. His reverie is interrupted by a knock at the door. The person at the door fills him with dread and anticipation. It's Martha, hoping to talk to Hannah about this whole time travel thing. Jonas looks terrified to answer the door, but he can't help himself.

Gina Stiebitz as FRANZISKA
 
Martha hesitates when she sees Stranger Jonas but enters the house anyway. Jonas' presence deeply unsettles her, even though she doesn't know who he is. She feels nervous and feels a touch of déjà vu. She's about ready to leave when Jonas asks if it's a glitch in the matrix. Martha stops in shock. He talks about the day she found the pendant. Martha realizes he must be Jonas. Jonas looks down shyly. They now see each other.

Back in 1987, Claudia sits nearby while Egon gets his chemotherapy. He wonders aloud if he was a good police officer. Never good with emotions, Claudia doesn't know what to tell him. She tries to change the subject and assures him that he was fine. He takes her hand and says, "You were always different. You saw the world differently from the start." Claudia tears up at this rare moment of tenderness between father and daughter.

He wonders if he doesn't see the world correctly. He thinks he did something stupid once. He brings up a movie about a guy that can use a car to get to the past (I guess Back to the Future?). He thinks the stuff in that movie really exists. Time travel must exist. Somehow, it has to do with Mads and Helge. He regrets deeply that he failed to see these events correctly. For her part, Claudia says nothing. She does not like that Egon is talking this way. Like Charlotte, she wants to figure this out on her own, without interference.

Julika Jenkins as CLAUDIA 1987
 
In 1954, Egon returns to the police station to find that a woman is waiting for him in his office. This happened before when Claudia showed up, so Egon isn't sure what to expect. Apparently it's about the man in the asylum. The woman claims she knows him. Egon is curious to talk to this new person.

The woman turns out to be Hannah. Hannah claims that she's looking for her husband. She saw his picture in the paper and that he was accused of killing children. Egon shows her Ulrich's photo with his face bloodied. Hannah then play acts at not being sure. She would like to see the man for herself.

Egon admits that he's in a psychiatric ward, so gaining an audience could be tricky. He thinks the man won't talk to anyone, too. When asked her name, Hannah says she's Katharina Nielsen.

Back in 2020, Jonas and Martha talk at the kitchen table. She wonders where he has been. He tells her he was trying to fulfill his promise to make things right again. He apologizes to her. She grabs his hand. She then touches his arm, trying to make sense of the fact that he's real. She touches his face, and he relishes her touch, savoring the moment.

Their union is interrupted by an angry Katharina, ready for another round of malice with Hannah. When no one answers, Katharina's hoodlum days take over, and she chooses to break in. Jonas steps in front of Martha protectively. And perhaps for good reason. Katharina comes in by way of a hammer. She's taken aback for only a moment before dragging Martha out from behind Jonas. She wonder if Martha knows who this is and where her brother is. Jonas is her grandson, Martha's nephew. Martha looks at Jonas hopefully, but all he can do is apologize again. Now Martha is perhaps thinking of how it made sense for Jonas to reject her.

Katharina demands to know where the time travel machine is. Jonas again has to apologize because Hannah has taken the machine. Katharina asks how she can get Mikkel back. But Martha steps in to say that Magnus now has the device. That they time traveled. Katharina wonders if she saw Mikkel. It's news to Martha that Mikkel is in 1987. Katharina warns Jonas to keep away from Martha. I guess Katharina feels no warmth for her grandson.

Sylvester Groth as CLAUSEN
 
Across town, Clausen enters the interrogation room, ready to question Aleksander. He holds out a gun and lays it in between them. His brother also went missing in 1986. His brother's name was Aleksander Kohler. There are 700 Aleksander Kohler's in Germany. He himself is now untraceable and took his mother's maiden name. However, a few months ago, Clausen received an envelope, giving him a tip.

The message reads: "He that has eyes to see and ears to hear may convince himself that no mortal can keep a secret. If his lips are silent, he chatters with his fingertips. Betrayal oozes out of him at every pore. You'll find the answer concerning your brother in Winden. – a Friend."

Clausen is sure of one thing – Aleksander is not his brother.

In 1954, Egon drives Hannah to see Ulrich. He tells her that Ulrich never confessed. He only said he wanted to save the children. He asks if they have children of their own. Egon finds this strange since the man said he was looking for his son. He asks if she has heard of the White Devil. She says no. He then suggests she try to get him to confess.

In 1987, Claudia drives Egon home. Apparently he's been filling her in on the details. That the man from the future came to 1953. And that the same man tried to kidnap another boy. She asks where the man is now. With every question, Claudia gets more and more nervous. Claudia wants him to move in with her today. He seems happy because he thinks this mean she believes him. More than anything, Egon desires confirmation that he's not crazy.

In 2020, Franziska and Magnus show the time machine to Peter and Charlotte. Peter wants to know to when they traveled. It's Peter's turn to raise his voice. Franziska realizes her parents know all about this. Magnus then gets a call from Martha, during which we can assume she told him about Stranger Jonas. Magnus says that Jonas has returned but older.

Charlotte askes them to stay out of it. Franziska loses her temper; she's tired of the secrets and storms out of the house.

[L-R]: Maja Schone as HANNAH, Oliver Masucci as ULRICH
 
In 1954, Hannah comes face-to-face with Ulrich. Egon stays respectfully back so they can talk in private. Ulrich shuffles forward, wearing a straight jacket, his ankles cuffed together. His face is beaten and swollen. She reaches out to touch his face. He jumps back at first. No one has touched him tenderly in almost a year. But after a minute, he comes to and realizes it's her. He thinks she's an angel at first. He weeps in gratitude that she came for him. He asks about Mikkel, Katharina, and the rest of his kids. Her face becomes hard as he asks about other people. Cruelly, Hannah asks if he could choose today, who would he pick: Katharina or her. She remembers out loud that he never said I love you. He tells her he loved her and still loves her. He promises that if she helps him, he will then leave Katharina.

She cuts back that he needs no one, especially her. He then begs for her to help, and she turns her back on him. Hannah tells Egon that it's not her husband.

In 2020, Katharina looks at their family photo. Martha walks behind her and hugs her from behind. She tells Katharina that everything will be fine. In walks Magnus with the suitcase. Katharina wonders if they know how to use it, but, of course, only Bartosz does. Katharina closes it up and takes it upstairs. Martha tells Magnus that both Mikkel and Ulrich are both alive. They are in another time.

[L-R]: Christian Patzold as EGON, Julika Jenkins as CLAUDIA
 
Back in 1987, Claudia tries to rush Egon into packing his things quickly. Egon asks for a minute. He grabs his medications, as she suggested. Egon rambles on about Ulrich and how we wanted to go to the caves. He realizes the caves are the center of everything. Claudia does not want anyone interfering with the caves and tries to stop her father from calling the police. But in true form, Egon will not be swayed.

He steps back from her, breathing hard. Perhaps this last puzzle piece has clicked into place. Never did Egon suspect his own daughter would want to keep him from the truth. He recognizes that Claudia is really there because she knows about time travel. That it's related to the nuclear plant. Egon is sad to realize that Claudia may be part of the block that's been hiding the truth. Perhaps she knows about the bodies? It's too terrible for him to fully comprehend. He wants the caves to be searched.

Claudia is now fully yelling denials. Claudia tries to regain control, but Egon has his marching orders now. At all costs, he will report what he's found. He's a man of duty. Claudia knows she can't have swarms of police searching the caves. The secrets are too precious. What's in the cave eclipses all scientific discovery.

Egon is shocked that for Claudia it's all about her. That she has no heart. This seems a sudden shift when he just told her how she looked at the world differently. Claudia is somewhat hurt. In fact, Claudia is wanting to help Regina, but she doesn't feel she can share this with Egon.

They fight over the phone, and Egon ends up falling down, knocking his head. He falls on the floor, stunned. Blood pools behind his head. Claudia tries to help him. She goes to call an ambulance, while her father whimpers. At the last moment, she hangs up on emergency services. She's too afraid that Egon will report the caves. She remember the words of older Claudia: "You will have to make sacrifices. Everything will happen as it always does. But if everything goes right, she'll live."
 
Christian Patzold as EGON

Egon begins to lose life. Claudia apologizes for this act. Egon says, "You are the White Devil." A chilling prophecy that has come true. At the beginning of this episode, Egon watched as his daughter's body was exhumed for evidence. Now, Claudia must watch passively as her father dies from blood loss.

In 1954, Egon offers Hannah a cigarette. He apologizes for not acting quicker when Ulrich lost control. He then wonders if she knows Agnes Nielsen. She says no. He then asks if she's traveling back today. She reports that she lost everything and wants a fresh start. Egon leans forward to give her a light. He then lights his own cigarette, and they smile at each other.

Our interlude is: God's Whisper by Raury. During this interlude, Claudia looks at her father's dead body with tears in her eyes. She then walks out of the room. The forensic specialist in 1954 finishes up with Claudia's corpse, pulling a sheet over her head. Clausen looks at the note and the picture of his brother. Aleksander sits in a cell, looking larger than the room. He looks dejected. Katharina examines the time machine. Martha lies on her back, thinking of her interaction with Jonas. Elsewhere Stranger Jonas has his own sweet thoughts.

Claudia returns home, suitcase in hand. Regina has left a note saying she's staying over with a friend. Claudia vigorously washes her hands, trying to get the blood off. She cries panicky gasps of air. She sits on the ground, overwhelmed with the day's events.

Into the house walks teen Jonas. He has keys to the house from older Claudia. She doesn't see how this is possible when she doesn't know who he is. She then realizes her older self gave him the keys. Jonas does his best Terminator impression and tells her to come with him. Claudia doesn't understand what's happening. Jonas says, "I know what you did. She told me. But she also said it doesn't have to happen that way again, next time." Jonas says they are going to the future.

Just as older Claudia has guided Jonas, it's Jonas' turn to now guide younger Claudia.

Overall thoughts: The entire plot of this episode stays in the three core time periods of 2020, 1987, and 1954. This is one of the most disturbing episodes of the season. Hannah proves once again to be one of the most unlikable people on the show. While no one is perfect, she seems to be the only person that has no moral compass. There is no one she thinks more highly of than herself. It's questionable whether or not she even has love for Jonas. She is the only one that intentionally causes harm to another person, with no guilt whatsoever.

In addition, Claudia wants to do good for someone, but ends up causing the thing she wanted to avoid. Her arc continues to baffle me. It's not clear why she chose to protect the secrets of the cave over a human life. And not one person has succeeded in doing any good whatsoever, no matter how hard they try.

Egon finally seems to snap out of his funk and put the pieces together about time travel. I believe he also realizes who the dead woman was back in 1954. Through a chilling course of events, Egon's death occurs just as Claudia feared, only she realizes it's her fault. "You are the white devil," are Egon's last words.

Burning Questions:
  • Will Hannah stay in 1953? And will she try to seduce Egon?
  • Will Claudia try to fix the past and not kill her father again?
  • Will Ulrich ever get out of prison?
  • What will Katharina do with the time machine?
Sic Mundus Creatus Est

Comments

Anonymous said…
‘In 1954 - Egon examines the body of Claudia (his mother, although he doesn't know that).’
Daughter, not mother.

Thank you very much for all your posts btw!
Lindsey said…
Yes, thanks. Corrected. This is the next episode to be updated so I would have noticed it eventually. Yeah this recap is pretty shoddy so far.
Joe T. said…
You left out the closing scene, where young Jonas shows up to take 1987 Claudia to the future.
Lindsey said…
Hi Joe, this episode still needs to be updated. From here on out my recaps are not good. Going to update soon.
Tania said…
Hannah is such a hag!!! Stealing from her son is bad enough, but leaving Ulrich to rot in the mental ward is unforgivable. She actually seems to take joy in the thought of how this will affect Katherina and their children. (Just watch her facial expressions.)

I hope she pays for her misdeeds soon.
Lindsey said…
Yes this is when Hannah changed from messed up to unforgivable. I am curious how you will feel about her character in season 3. I sense maybe she tries to make amends. But after this we always wonder if she has motives.