His Dark Materials: Season 3/ Episodes 5 and 6 – Recap/ Review (with Spoilers)

As Lyra continues to progress towards fulfilling the prophecy, Metatron finally shows they have had enough of humanity thinking they can stage a rebellion.

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Metatron (Alex Hassell) learning of Asriel's act

As Lyra continues to progress towards fulfilling the prophecy, Metatron finally shows they have had enough of humanity thinking they can stage a rebellion.

Aired (HBO) December 19, 2022
Episode Title No Way Out
Director(s) Weronika Tofilska, Russell Dodgson
Writer(s) Amelia Spencer
Episode Title The Abyss
Director(s) Amit Gupta, Weronika Tofilska
Writer(s) Francesca Gardiner
Noted Characters
Metatron Alex Hassell
Atal Kate Ashfield


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The Serpent Lays Low – Mary, Atal

Mary continues being separate from the rest of the cast as she learns the ways and language of the Zalif. Specifically about them dying due to Sraf, what they call dust, leaving their world. However, what was a slow decline originally, hastens within days.

The Dead Comes To Life If They Have Hope – Roger, Will, Lee, Lyra, Harpy, John

In what we learn is Metatron’s purgatory, Lyra finds herself struggling to find Roger. Then, when she sees him, he is a boy without hope. Drained are his memories, any sense of joy, but Lyra telling stories and helping him to remember what it means to live lightens him up. In fact, it does all in purgatory, even the harpies who exist within.

But while brightening up Roger’s soul is a blessing, getting out of purgatory is still a challenge. Where they find Roger isn’t where Will’s knife can cut into another dimension, so they have to go further up. Originally, it seemed the Harpies might be a challenge, but again, they too want to hear stories, and memories, as long as they aren’t lies. And with Lyra befriending one, even giving them a name, everyone is allowed safe passage.

In fact, said harpy even saves Lyra when she nearly falls to her death. Which really does show, while they appear to be monsters, they just don’t know social niceties. That is unlike Lee, who appears and acts as an usher to wherever Lyra and Will are guiding everyone.

Oh, and talking about Will, he gets to have a proper chat with his dad about life and fate. Mainly in Will questioning his fate and whether he can fight. John reassures him and encourages him to seek Asriel, not just for the war to come but his daemon too. A being Will is surprised he has.

But after many reunions, final goodbyes happen as they reach the highest point in purgatory, and Roger steps into paradise, Lee, and then one person after another.

The Man Who Got To Close To The Sun – Metatron, Alarbus, Marisa, Hugh, Father Gómez, Asriel, Iorek, Serafina, Dr. Cooper, Roke, Xaphania

Hugh’s ambitions know no bounds, and it is perhaps because of that, even with knowing Marisa was right about Father President, Father Gomez seeks to get on Hugh’s good side. How? Well, by going after the “serpent” as Hugh handles Eve. Which means Father Gomez will be on a search for Mary.

Which leads to what was supposed to be Marisa’s execution. Hugh was ready and praying for the weapon to kill Eve, but Dr. Cooper stops the execution, and for that, Hugh kills her and tries to restart things himself. However, thanks to Roke, who is killed for helping Marisa, Marisa is able to get herself free, fight Hugh, and try to save her daughter.

But when could things ever be that easy? After killing Roke, Hugh preps the machine again and knocks down Marisa so that she can’t stop him from finishing the task. But, unlucky for Hugh, Metatron, triggered by Alarbus’ word of what Asriel did, decides to remove dust from the various worlds. He does this after Marisa removes Lyra’s DNA, and thus, Hugh sacrifices himself for nothing. Then, to make matters worse, Marisa confronts Fra Pavel about whether or not Hugh may have succeeded last minute, and with him seeing Lyra in the realm of the dead, Marisa fears the worse.

So, with believing she has failed Lyra, she returns to Asriel, who has lukewarm feelings about Marisa returning and believing Lyra is dead. But, in his defense, Lyra isn’t dead. He didn’t know it when he gave Marisa the cold shoulder, but when he reached out to Iorek to have the bears join his war, he learns what Lyra did.

With this information, Asriel is ecstatic, especially after Xaphania confirms Lyra defeated death and destroyed Megatron’s purgatory. But for others, they aren’t so happy as they mourn Ruta, who is a casualty of Metatron’s actions. Serafina is one of those people, who blame Asriel’s ego and ambition, but as the war grows near, like many, she sets aside her feelings regarding Asriel’s path because the wheels of the future are already in motion.

Things To Note

Question(s) Left Unanswered

Atal (Kate Ashfield) talking to Mary
“Atal (Kate Ashfield),” His Dark Materials, ” No Way Out; The Abyss” directed by Weronika Tofilska, Russell Dodgson, Amit Gupta, 2022, (HBO)
  1. What could Mary do that would trigger something in Lyra, going by the Lucifer and Eve parallel?
  2. What exactly is this place Lee and Roger were trapped in? Is there no heaven, just limbo, and hell for humans?
  3. If there is a serpent and Eve, could there be a Lilith?

What Could Happen Next

  1. With each week leading to two episodes released, we should expect to see the end of Asriel’s war or the beginning – depending on whether the show wishes to have another season.


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Notable Performances or Moments

Lyra Bringing Roger Back To Life

While it has long been clear Dafne Keen is meant for big things, watching her present herself as a lighthouse for the dead acted as a reminder. For in the simple act of storytelling, highlighting her character’s journey with another actor, she did more than touch upon recent nostalgia but really showed how far she has come and that this is only the beginning.

Marisa Reconciling With Her Daemon

Marisa’s only real long-term relationship is with her daemon. One of the few we’ve met that doesn’t speak, despite showing signs of intelligence mirroring their human. So when it seemed potentially done with her, and Marisa later reconciled with her, it was a moment that reminded you that Marisa hardened herself for so long to get ahead, she forgot what she was capable of beyond success. Yet, here she is, still learning and growing, despite all fears she was stunted and unable to love.


Characters Dying

There is nothing like characters dying to prove to an audience that things are getting serious. Now, yes, Ruta and Roke dying aren’t major losses, but Hugh? Father President of the Magisterium? That is a sign great things are to come, and no one is exempt from being written off.

However, whether that means more may die, of higher stature, is anyone’s guess. Especially if you haven’t read the books already.

Metatron (Alex Hassell) learning of Asriel's act
His Dark Materials: Season 3/ Episodes 5 and 6 – Recap/ Review (with Spoilers)
While releasing two episodes at a time does continue to make the season feel a bit too rushed, at least it leaves you knowing the end is soon, and you won’t have to wait until the new year to see how it all ends.
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Characters Dying
Lyra Bringing Roger Back To Life

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