Katla season 1, episode 7 recap – “The Rock”

By Jonathon Wilson
Published: June 17, 2021
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Katla season 1, episode 7 recap - "The Rock"


“The Rock” provides some answers, though leaves too many questions for the finale to possibly answer — the dreaded Netflix cliffhanger ending seems imminent.

This recap of Katla season 1, episode 7, “The Rock”, contains spoilers. You can check out our spoiler-free season review by clicking these words.

Mikael is still missing — and while it’s easy to think he should probably stay that way, Rakel is distraught. She turns up at the crash site looking for him and confesses everything to Grima, Einar, and Gisli, the latter of whom refuses to believe any of it (though we know why.) Grima, though, is understandably intrigued. It only just occurred to me that this is the penultimate episode — I genuinely have no idea how any of this is going to get wrapped up, though knowing Netflix, it probably won’t get wrapped up at all.

I forget to mention in my recap of the previous episode that the younger Gunhild had an issue with the baby and was admitted to the clinic; early in “The Rock” Thor goes to see her there, and Asa spots him. Gisli also turns up for Magnea’s prescription and receives a doom-and-gloom prognosis from Vigdis. She could have a month, or a year, or anything in-between. If the medicine she’s taking starts to work, she could have longer. He doesn’t say this outright, but I assume he’s thinking that if she dies, he can have another few years with the younger version.

Anyway, Grima goes to see Darri in Katla episode 7, since she knows he has experienced something similar to her. She tells him about Gunhild and Asa and the other version of herself and also points out that the folkloric changelings don’t seem to only replace dead people. What seems important is what the differences between the versions are. They might share the memories of the people they’re imitating, but are they really the same? Grima goes home and finds her duplicate redecorating the house, but when she tries to explain to Kjartan that she’s an imposter he thinks she’s losing it again. Luckily, the DNA results from the body found under the generator shed reveal it is Asa after all, so if that doesn’t prove her claims I don’t know what will.

Darri, meanwhile, believes that there’s a scientific explanation for all this hidden under the glacier, so he wants to retrieve a sample from down there to figure out what it is. Eventually, he descends. The episode’s title, “The Rock”, presumably refers to the sample he takes, but it’s what he witnesses and doesn’t talk about that is more striking — it looked very much to me like the changelings being birthed from the ash. He leaves sharpish and refuses to talk about what he saw, but he does examine the sample, which wriggles around in the petri dish like it has a mind of its own.

Darri gives Eyja and company the lowdown — it’s a meteorite from outside our solar system that has carved out the volcanic channels of Katla and has since been buried under the glacier. Every time Katla erupts, it pushes fragments of the meteorite to the surface, scattering them over the glacier. So, we’re dealing with aliens, basically. That isn’t the only revelation, either. We learn from Gunhild that Bjorn is Thor’s child, and he “is the way he is” — he’s disabled — because a witch woman in Iceland attempted to perform a shamanistic late-term abortion. And Grima goes home and finds her doppelganger having sex with Kjartan, just to complete the trio of “there’s only one episode left and there’s no way all this is going to be resolved” developments.

But Katla season 1, episode 7 ends with a moment of frankness and connection between Grima and Asa’s doppelganger. The former shows the latter the proof that she really died on the glacier, and confesses her own faults, lamenting that she isn’t warm and tender like the version of her that is currently in bed with her husband. The sisters share a tearful embrace, and then Asa walks into the sea as Grima recalls seeing her mother do the same. The crashing waves sweep her away.

Netflix, TV Recaps
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