The Dark Crystal: Age of Resistance ending explained: will there be a season 2?

Dark Crystal Age of Resistance ending
(Image credit: Netflix)

We’re not saying goodbye to Thra just yet. While The Dark Crystal: Age of Resistance ending brings one story to a close, it kicks off another: a tale filled with optimism and, well, resistance, though it still leaves several of the characters’ fates up in the air.

The likes of Deet, Rian, and Hup, as well as the Skeksis, have question marks hanging over their heads by the conclusion of this 10-episode run. With this many loose threads dangling – and several trine sitting between the events of Age of Resistance and the original 1982 Dark Crystal movie – it seems that a second season could very well be on the horizon.

With that in mind, we aim to clear up every Fizzgig-fuelled question you might have about the Dark Crystal: Age of Resistance ending, whether those are question the Netflix prequel has left unanswered or otherwise tantalisingly set aside for a later date. We’ll even recap the events of the finale too, including all the deaths (and rebirths) that came with it.

For more Dark Crystal coverage, check out our interview with the Age of Resistance cast.

The Dark Crystal: Age of Resistance ending explained: what happens in the finale?

Dark Crystal Age of Resistance ending

(Image credit: Netflix)

Having united the seven Gelfling clans against the Skeksis (thanks in no small part to the fabled Dual Glaive’s ability to communicate across the land), Rian and Deet fight the Emperor and his band of Skeksis at Stone-in-the-Wood.

Amid the chaos of the all-out war between the Gelfling and the Skeksis, the General gets wounded. In his hour of need, he’s approached by the duplicitous Chamberlain, who kills him where he stands. Meanwhile, the resurrected Hunter pushes the Gelfing back, destroys the Dual Glaive, and kills Maudra Fara. He is on the verge of murdering Rian, too, when he’s stopped in his tracks by an unseen force. 

At that moment in the Crystal Desert, the Mystic Archer – whose life-force is now tied to the Hunter after Aughra’s scheming – sacrifices himself to kill the Hunter. In his place is a reborn Aughra.

The Emperor steps in to kill off the remaining resistance but the seven clans, as well as the Arathim, band to Rian and Deet’s side. The leader of the Skeksis is unfazed and uses his staff, containing a shard of the Crystal of Truth, to level most of Stone-in-the-Wood. Using her powers gained from the Sanctuary Tree, Deet fights back, and the Skeksis scuttle away into their castle.

Perhaps hinting at sub-plots in the second season, we also see Hup grabbing the trinket that powers the rocky Lore, while Rian goes off in search of Deet, only to find her irreparably overtaken by the Darkening after using her Sanctuary Tree magic.

The episode wraps up with lots of celebrations and hugging, but also one more important plot point: Brea finds the lost shard of the Crystal of Truth (previously seen in Deet’s vision back in episode eight), which the Vapran princess calls “the key to ending Skeksis power and uniting the Gelfling.” Phew.

The Dark Crystal: Age of Resistance ending explained: the biggest questions

Dark Crystal Age of Resistance ending

(Image credit: Netflix)

What happened to Deet?

Deet is not herself by the end of Age of Resistance. In fact, she’s been consumed by the Thra-destroying Darkening after using it to beat back the Skeksis. The purple power courses through her veins and she wanders off on her own, ignoring Rian in the process, during the episode’s closing moments. The purple eyes show that it’s probably not going to get any better for the Grottan – but the secret to her fate may lie in episode eight, “Prophets Don’t Know Everything.”

When communicating with the Sanctuary Tree for the final time, Deet sees a vision that seemingly spoils much of the future events in the series: Rian is seen plunging a shard into the Crystal of Truth and Deet herself is sitting on a new throne, completely overcome by the Darkening. As the episode title hints, though, it’s a fate that may not be set in stone. Deet could still be saved, yet the future currently looks bleak for the character.

Will Mira return?

Umm. Guys. Did we forget about the whole dead girlfriend thing? Rian did – and the show hasn’t bothered to give us an answer… yet. With Aughra having ‘died’ and returned (more on that below), a possible second season will likely revolve around both the Gelfling pushing back against the Skeksis and Rian’s attempts to reunite with his loved one. That is, if he’s not too busy making goo-goo eyes at both Brea and Deet. Horny puppets is very 2019.

What is the creature the Scientist has created?

The Skeksis have a new secret weapon. Post-title card, the Scientist unveils his greatest creation: Garthim, a combination of Grunak (the race that counts the two sewn-lipped slaves who do the Scientist’s bidding throughout the series among its numbers), and the spidery Arathim.

The Scientist indicates he’s going to build a whole army of Garthim, too, which could turn the tide in any future war against the Gelfling. The Garthim’s heavy presence in the Dark Crystal movie proves it could be a potent solution to the Skeksis’ ultimate dilemma.

How did Aughra return from the dead?

In terms of plot armour, Aughra was covered head-to-toe in the death-defying narrative device. The curmudgeonly astronomer plays a key role in the original Dark Crystal movie, which takes place some time after Age of Resistance. She was never going to die here, though her actual resurrection happened so suddenly, it’s difficult to get a firm grasp on. So, let’s break it down.

At the onset of the penultimate episode of the season, Aughra willingly gives up her life (and essence) to revive the Skeksis Hunter, SkekMal. On the other side of Thra, at the Crystal Desert, the Mystic Archer is entering a state between life and death after his battle with the Hunter.

Later, once he awakens, he throws himself off a cliff and – thanks to being tied to the Archer via mystic mumbo-jumbo that’s never quite fully explained – the Archer perishes and, in his place, out pops Aughra.

Knowing Aughra’s almost literal all-seeing nature, it’s not a stretch to believe that this was all part of her plan. After all, she all-too-willingly put herself in the hands of the Skeksis and set in motion the events of the finale with her actions. She knows all there is to know about Thra – even things that haven’t yet come to pass. Plus, the last conversation between Aughra and the Mystic back in episode six suggests she pushed the Mystic into battle with the Hunter as a self-fulfilling prophecy. It’s Aughra’s world and we’re just living in it, baby.

What next for the Skeksis?

The Dark Crystal movie clues us in on the Skeksis future, if not their immediate fates. Spoiler alert: the Skeksis win. Kinda. The events of the 1982 original show that the vulture-like creatures eventually commit genocide on the vast majority of the Gelfling, although some of those, including the current Emperor, won’t live up until that point.

For the current batch huddled together, however, they now have to deal with the Gelfling uprising and have retreated back to the Castle of the Crystal to decide their next move. Only the red-clad Chamberlain is known to survive the events. For the rest, their heads could be on the chopping block if a revolution begins to take hold across Thra.

Who replaces the All-Maudra?

The Vapran ruler, leader of all Gelflings, perishes at the hands of the Skeksis (with a little help from her daughter, Seladon) during the closing moments of episode five. A power vacuum exists in Thra, with the remaining six clans breaking off from Seladon and the rest of the Vapran clan.

Of course, the Age of Resistance ending sees Rian unite the remaining seven clans. His powerful speech, appearing in fires up and down Thra, sparks a rebellion against the Skeksis. He seems to be the perfect fit, especially given that possible heir-apparent Maudra Fara (the leader of the Stonewood Clan, voiced by Lena Headey) dies during the final battle.

Rian responding to the challenges of leadership – as well as a possible love triangle – could be a compelling a story as any if Age of Resistance is back for a second season.

Will there be a season 2?

No news on that yet, unfortunately. Unlike The Boys season 2, which Amazon ordered before the first season even aired due to its obvious quality, Netflix hasn’t yet followed suit with Age of Resistance. Cross all of your fingers and pray to Thra that it’ll be the case. We need more Dark Crystal in our lives, that’s for certain.

Bradley Russell

I'm the Senior Entertainment Writer here at GamesRadar+, focusing on news, features, and interviews with some of the biggest names in film and TV. On-site, you'll find me marveling at Marvel and providing analysis and room temperature takes on the newest films, Star Wars and, of course, anime. Outside of GR, I love getting lost in a good 100-hour JRPG, Warzone, and kicking back on the (virtual) field with Football Manager. My work has also been featured in OPM, FourFourTwo, and Game Revolution.