NOTE: This post contains minor spoilers for the TV series Dark.

The TV series Dark deals with a fictional town, Winden, where time loops greatly complicate interactions for the town’s residents, knotting them together in a set of interconnected and interdependent ways. People travel forward and backward in time only to become stuck, abandoning their original lives and starting anew. Parents meet and have unknowingly devastating interactions with their grown children that are nothing more than a stranger to them. Many people are both ancestors and descendants in the tree. Two characters are each mother and daughter to the other simultaneously.

In the series finale, the protaganists manage to untie the knot holding their world together. They determine that their existences are the result of an action in an origin world. A scientist began experimenting with time travel after the death of his family and created the loops. By changing this outcome, the scientist does not experiment, and the time loops are not created. In fact neither protaganist exists since they were both entangled within the loop. The series ending shows the true effect of the time loops for the town. From the original 25+ characters that were introduced as major elements of Winden’s story, only 6 remain after the time loop has been removed.

Family tree loops from the TV series Dark

By traveling up the causal thread, the protaganists greatly simplified the world’s state.

  • How many of our organizational processes and procedures are a result of this kind of entanglements?
  • How can we travel upwards to find and fix the initial mover?
  • What and how much might cease to exist when we do?