Dark season 3, episode 4 recap and breakdown – “The Origin”

By Daniel Hart
Published: June 27, 2020 (Last updated: 3 weeks ago)
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Netflix series Dark season 3, episode 4 - The Origin


Dark season 3, episode 4, “The Origin” gives this notion that the overall story is about ferocious love, broken relationships and tragedy tying all these characters together.

This recap and breakdown of Netflix series Dark season 3, episode 4, “The Origin” contains significant spoilers.

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Please note, for reference and the purpose of recapping Dark, descriptors like Child, Teen, Adult, Elderly, or a specific year will be used to determine the character in the plot at the beginning of paragraphs. For example:

  • Jonas (teen)
  • The Stranger (adult)
  • Adam (elderly)


  • Young Helge (child – 1953)
How does Dark season 3, episode 4, “The Origin” open?

Episode 4 begins with Tronte (teen) walking through the woods and he sees the cave in 1954. Suddenly the unknown adult man that has been killing people in different times talks to him. The man tells him he knew his mother and states he was never given a name but in the past, he chose Tronte’s name. The unknown elderly man and child surround him. The adult man gives Tronte a bracelet that his mother owned and then Tronte walks off. You can sense that the unknown man is slowly putting his own plans together.

September 24, 1954 — the original world — I love you

And then the scene flits to Hannah (adult) having sex with Egon (adult). Egon tells Hannah that he loves her and gives her a necklace. Hannah has called herself Katharina. Claudia (teen), Ines (teen), and Jana talk about sex and what male penises look like. Meanwhile, Doris (adult) heads to the police station to talk to Egon and wonders where he has been. She has her own theories on Agnes Nielsen’s disappearance with a link to Hanno Tauber. Egon states that he will look into it and Doris gets frustrated as she senses something is going on. Dark season 3, episode 4, “The Origin” starts to unfold the suspected breakdown of Egon and Doris’s marriage.

2052 — the original world — when the time is right

In 2052, Adam tells Agnes (adult) that she made the right choice — he gives her a newspaper excerpt that says “unidentified woman’s body found in woods” and it is a drawing of elderly Claudia. Adam tells Agnes to give the newspaper to Claudia when the time is right. Agnes tells Adam to tell Martha what the origin is. Martha (counterpart — teen — 2052) wakes up and Magnus (elderly) states he now knows why she disappeared in 1888 and raises the irony that it was them who gave her the order. Martha apologizes with tears in her eyes.

November 6, 2052 — the other world — they will all die

Martha (adult — counterpart) is telling Martha (counterpart — teen — 2052 — the other world) that this is her future, 33 years from yesterday. The younger Martha asks why names are crossed out on the wall and her older self explains that they will die in two days — the apocalypse of the world. Dark season 3, episode 4, “The Origin” gets more complex but somehow more intriguing.

1954 — the original world — you are pregnant

Hannah (adult) is told that she’s pregnant by a doctor and is understandably shocked by the news. Meanwhile, Egon is visited by Greta Doppler (adult) — she would like an update on the investigation on the missing minister for the church, Hanno Tauber.

Doris (adult) goes to church and speaks to the unknown man who is acting as the new minister — the elderly unknown man and child are sitting on the benches. Doris asks about the disappearances. The unknown man tells Doris that she’s interested in Agnes, not the child, and suggests that her husband is having an affair. Spooked out, Doris leaves the church. Dark season 3, episode 4, “The Origin” sees the extent to how this unknown man and his group know about what happens in the timelines.

We also get a slight insight into Jana and Tronte’s friendship when they were younger; Jana (teen) walks through the woods and sees Tronte (teen) next to the lakes looking sad, looking at his mother’s bracelet that the unknown man gave him. Tronte tells Jana that she has a nice smile.

Eventually, Hannah visits Egon and tells him that she is pregnant; he asks if the baby is his, and Hannah is dismayed at that question and gets angry — “I thought you were different but you are all the same”. Episode 4 sees Hannah feeling betrayed by a man again, with the same cycle repeating even in the past, and her bitterness towards the world increasing.

November 6, 2052 — the other world — you can change it

Martha (adult — counterpart) tells Martha (counterpart — teen — 2052 — the other world) that they (her and Jonas) can change it. Jonas (teen) asks what must be done and the older Martha tells Jonas that Eva lied and that there is no way to save both worlds — “You must save one of them”. The older Martha tells Jonas he must give up his world, his Martha. The younger Martha walks out, freaked out by the events and the older Martha explains to Jonas that in this world he and Martha can work. Jonas chases after the younger Martha. She asks him if it is all true and Jonas states he wants to fix it all. It’s difficult to know who to trust in Dark season 3, episode 4, “The Origin” and that’s the point — maybe it’s not about who to trust but how all these events play out together.

2052 — the original world — it’s time

Adam tells Agnes (adult) that it is time and they load up the machine. Agnes in a suit walks towards the dark matter.

1954 — the original world — I need no-one.

Tronte (teen) gives Jana (teen) his mother’s bracelet. Claudia (teen) sees them both and grabs Tronte’s hand and they walk off. The tension between Tronte and Jana is obvious, and it is evident Claudia can sense something.

Egon (adult) tells Hannah (adult) what the next steps are. Hannah tells him to not worry she won’t keep the baby and asks why some people get everything while others get nothing — “All my life, I’ve been trying to hold onto things that I just can’t. But now I understand. I need no-one. None of you”. Egon gives her a contact and money for the abortion and tells her he is sorry. Episode 4 is not a good chapter for Hannah — her world is becoming poisoned more and more.

November 6, 2052 — the other world — an unending circle

Jonas (teen) and Martha (counterpart — teen — 2052 — the other world) walk back through the caves. Meanwhile, Martha (counterpart — adult) continues with her mapping on the wall. Noah (adult — possibly counterpart) then walks in and asks if “they” (presumably Martha and Jonas) are on their way: “The beginning of the end. And the end is the beginning. We are all born of him. You gave him his life. And now he will give us ours. A line with no start or end. An unending circle”.

1954 — the original world — I want a divorce

Egon (adult) returns home and Doris (adult) is waiting for him. He gives her some flowers. Doris tells him that she knows what he’s done with that girl and asks for a divorce — “We should have done it earlier really // the ways of the heart cannot be explained”. Hannah meets Helene Albers by chance and she introduces herself as Katharina. Hannah takes off the necklace Egon gave her and leaves it for Helene. Dark season 3, episode 4, “The Origin” gives this notion that the overall story is about ferocious love, broken relationships, and tragedy tying all these characters together.

2052 — the original world — I’ll show you the origin

Martha (counterpart — teen — 2052) tells Adam that he promised as she kept her end of the deal. Adam says he will tell her what the origin is.

2019 — the other world — inevitable

Now back in 2019, Martha (counterpart — teen — 2019 — the other world) tells Jonas (teen) that she felt something when he walked in her classroom: “As if we knew each other. From a dream”. Jonas apologizes for everything. Martha asks what is she like in the other world — Jonas touches her face and they kiss each other and then have sex. This feels oddly inevitable. Since the series has started when we both saw Martha and Jonas meet each other’s eyes when Martha was holding hands with Bartosz, there’s this sense of eternal, crippling love that continues to feel helpless for them both. Meanwhile, in the middle of the night in 1954, Claudia (teen) visits Tronte (teen) and takes off her clothes — Jana (teen) lays on her bed holding the bracelet.

How does Dark season 3, episode 4, “The Origin” end?

Adam shows Martha (counterpart — teen — 2052) where it all began in her house: “Your older self, she sent you and Jonas back for a single purpose.” He hands Martha a notebook that shows the beginning of the end and says, “You were never supposed to stop the apocalypse. You were to create the seed”. Adam puts Martha’s hand on her stomach as she starts to breathe shakily: “This is the origin. What’s going on inside you is the bridge between both worlds. It is the beginning of the knot. And eventually also its end. Your son. He is the origin”. The scene then flits to 2019 in the other world, showing the unknown man looking at the portrait of Adam and Eve. We make the assumption here that the unknown man is Martha and Jonas’ child. Episode 4 is by far the best episode so far in the final season and serves as a genuine middle-point in the story.

Additional points
  • In 1954, The unknown man, the child, and the elderly man ask a businessman how much money is the coal industry paying him to block the Nuclear plant plans. They give him a book that says “Winden Building Authority” and inside there is a building permit for the nuclear plant.
  • In 1954, Claudia (child) overhears Bernd (adult) arguing with someone about the future of the nuclear plant.

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