A psychological thriller and science-fiction mystery on Netflix, “1899,” twists reality for both its characters and its audience. Every episode of this multi-layered narrative reveals a different secret. As more truths are revealed, more questions are raised. It begins in the cramped setting of a ship in the middle of the sea, but by the time it reaches its conclusion, its scope has grown to the point where everything is delightfully jumbled. We have more questions than ever after the first season’s conclusion. Here, we explain the significance of that finale and speculate on the show’s possible future. Spoilers follow.
1899 Plot Synopsis
On board the Kerberos, a ship sailing to New York, Maura Franklin awakens. She has a secret, much like most of the other travellers. She goes there to learn what happened to the ship Prometheus, which vanished four months ago at the same time as her brother went missing. She makes an effort to hide her relationship with the ship from others, but occasionally she experiences “glitch in the matrix” moments. Things become more difficult to understand when Prometheus is discovered abandoned in the middle of the ocean with no sign of life.
Maura works to understand what might have happened to Prometheus with the aid of Captain Eyk. However, it quickly becomes apparent that their own spacecraft is more secretive than they had anticipated. Violence and fatalities follow the entrance of a mystery youngster in Kerberos, which further agitates the situation. Henry, Maura’s father, who turns out to be a highly elusive guy, is the only one who appears to have all the answers.
1899 Ending: Who is the Creator of the Simulation?
The realisation that everyth ing that has been happening to the Kerberos passengers is not genuine is one of “1899”‘s biggest twists. Since it is a simulation, all the conflicts, deaths, losses, and possibly even memories that the passengers have gone through have taken place entirely in their heads. Naturally, everyone is curious as to who created this simulation given the complicated nature of the events as a whole. Even more crucially, why did they succeed?
At first, it appears as though Henry Singleton, Maura’s father, is orchestrating everything. He first appears in the second episode, where he is seen keeping an eye on the other travellers. He is also mentioned by Maura, who claims that his business purchased the ships and that he has been exploiting them and the passengers in some perverse experiment. She thinks Henry did something to him and erased Maura’s memories since her brother learned about their father’s evil plans. In the end, though, it turns out that this is just one layer of a very intricate riddle.
The boy first refers to Maura as the Creator rather than Henry. She resided back in the real world with her husband Daniel and their child Elliott. Before Elliot became ill and there was no treatment for his ailment, everything had been perfect for them. Because Maura couldn’t handle the idea of losing her kid, she devised a plan to stay with him always. The three of them could live happily and healthily in the simulation she made for them. Daniel made the decision to carry out his wife’s plan despite having mixed feelings over her inability to acknowledge the truth of their son’s circumstance.
Daniel and Maura made Elliot a playroom for their first simulation. After it proved to be a success, they made the decision to create larger worlds that could simulate actual world conditions. The scope of Maura’s simulation grew gradually, and things began to spiral out of control. Henry eventually joined the project, but he had other goals in mind.
In a talk with Eyk, Maura reveals that Henry loved his wife more than his kids. His wife had Alzheimer’s, which gradually destroyed her memory until she lost all of the people she had ever loved. Henry was deeply affected by her passing, and instead of seeking solace in his children, he made the decision to devote his life to learning about the workings of the brain. It sounded like a wonderful idea to investigate Maura’s notion of building entire worlds out of simulations. So, after entering it, he made the decision to take charge.
Additionally, Maura’s decision to choose to forget some aspects of her history helped Henry. Daniel tries to convince her to realise that she deleted the memories of her own kid in an effort to forget the sorrow. Henry takes advantage of this for his personal gain and develops the simulation with the ships as an experiment. He soon realises, though, that Maura is the only person with a route out and that he is also trapped in the simulation.
In a simulation, you need a lock and key to get out. The lock is in Elliot’s tiny pyramid, and Maura has the key. Maura is also unable to recall where she kept the key because she has lost her memory. Henry repeats the same simulation in an effort to get her to remember where the key is and to jog her memory. As a result, in 1899, Maura boarded a ship sailing from Europe to New York. Henry keeps a close eye on her in the hopes of getting a clue about the location or nature of the key.
The ship is meant to arrive at its destination after a week of simulations, but every time it doesn’t. For the subsequent loop, a new ship is brought out, and the same process is repeated. All of these loops are kept in the archives. Because Maura is forced to forget every simulation, she and the other passengers must restart and repeat their errors. Up until Daniel arrives and begins to mess with the loop. It takes him several tries to get it right, but ultimately he does. If not everything, at least the memories of the most recent simulation are still there when Maura finally awakes, escaping the cage she created for herself, only to discover that there is more to the reality she left behind.
Henry tells Elliot about the time Maura read about Plato’s cave metaphor as he reveals the truth about the scenario they are all caught in. She is so perplexed by the concept that she begins to doubt whether a person can actually determine whether their vision of the outside world is accurate or whether it is merely a product of their imagination. She asks more questions when her father tries to explain things using the idea of God. Doesn’t the same rule apply to God’s world if God created it and they are nothing more than toys for him to play with? Who gave him life, and who is manipulating his reality?
This idea of a simulation inside of a simulation inside of a simulation is how “1899” leaves us. Inside Henry’s simulation were the ships and the people. Henry was a virtual version of himself that Maura had made. If she is the creator in this case, who constructed her simulation is the next obvious question. Who is her reality’s God? Daniel responds to this by informing Maura that her brother, Ciaran, has taken over the entire project outside of their simulation. This proves that Ciaran is the real Creator. He is in charge of everything and has been engaging in a game with Maura, Henry, Daniel, and everyone else in the various simulation layers.
Is Maura in Simulation or Reality in the End?
Maura and Daniel debate whether the events outside of one’s brain or the events within one’s head make up reality while discussing the nature of reality. According to Maura, the brain is responsible for both internal and external perception. Real and fake cannot be distinguished from one another without the brain’s processing power. Daniel, however, is of the opinion that while one can become lost in their own thoughts, reality lies in the outer world. In the end, Maura realises that reality.
She had been mired in a mental reality she had created the entire time. All of the things she takes for granted are false, including the ships, the people on board, and the fact that she is sterile. She cannot distinguish between the majority of them and the fake recollections. She is actually in a simulation. Her brain leads her to assume that she is travelling, while in reality, she is confined to a single location. And that is reality, as Daniel already said.
To end her suffering, Maura built the simulation, but things turned out differently than she had planned. She eventually realises that even her father is no longer in charge. She and every other passenger on the ship are also trapped inside the simulation, as is him. Ciaran, her brother, appears to have taken over management of the entire undertaking. And this is when things become challenging.
It is evident that Maura does not yet have all of her memories when she awakens from the 1899 simulation. Her mind is still unable to access her original memories. She only recalls the events of the previous loop and what Daniel told her about their shared life. The surprise on her expression when she suddenly finds herself outside of that location and travelling through space shows that not even this was able to trigger her memories. We can assume that Maura’s reality is still up for debate because she is still unaware of her memories and the previous universe she belonged to.
We don’t know how much power Ciaran actually has over the participants in the simulation when Daniel claims that Ciaran has taken control of the entire project and is the one in charge right now. It appears that he would prefer his sister to remain in the simulation for as long as possible because he is directing everything right now and because he has made no attempts to pull her out of the simulation. Ciaran might have built one or more layers of simulation to make things harder for her and the others. It is unclear why he is acting in this way, but it is obvious that he does not want Maura’s reality to set in just yet.
Even if Maura’s awakening 200 years in the future would lead one to believe that she had actually escaped the simulation, the passage of time in no way establishes that this is the case. Maura might, for all we know, be from the same era as us, and the simulation is what has transported her into the future. The fact that the final shot, right before the titles begin to roll, resembles the passengers’ “waking up” sequences further fuels this argument further.
With the same rotation of the camera, we can see the identical triangle sign that has emerged repeatedly during the programme in Maura’s eyes. This indicates that she has overcome a challenge and is getting closer to reality. However, it is unclear how many more of these simulations will be placed in her path before she can begin to believe her brain and receive a taste of what reality is like outside of her head.
What Happened to the Boy and Eyk?
While Maura finally leaves the ship (only to wind herself on another), other passengers’ fates are still not completely determined. Eyk and Elliot end up being the two persons that mean the most to her during the entire voyage. The captain of Kerberos is crucial in aiding Maura in understanding what was going on around them. On the other hand, Elliot is the component of the puzzle that Maura’s own thoughts appear to have designed for her. When the season is over, where will they both be?
Henry doesn’t appreciate being trapped in a simulation, even though he might have loved to manage the simulations and use them for his own research. After trying all of his regular strategies without success and capturing Elliot, he offers Maura a decision. She should provide the key that will enable Henry to awaken in exchange for her son. The simulation begins to wind down and enter the archives while Daniel devises a method to alter the coding. Here, Eyk and Maura are reunited after Daniel threw him into the archives.
Maura and Eyk look for Henry’s office as the other passengers choose to find a way to leave the ship. They begin their search in Daniel’s recollection and go through the memories of the other travellers until arriving in Maura’s. Sebastian, who had been aware of everything the entire time, confronts them at this point. He pushes a button on his remote control when Eyk attacks, and Eyk tumbles to the ground. He appears to be comatose or maybe dead, but he is not. Eyk won’t awaken till the following simulation since Sebastian simply shuts off his current one. He is not actually dead; rather, he is only temporarily unconscious until he is awakened to repeat the cycle.
After that, Maura is brought to Henry, where she learns that Elliot is no longer on her side. Henry revealed to Elliott that Maura was the one who set up the simulation and imprisoned everyone inside of it. Elliot now just wants to get out of it, but his plan to use his mother’s key to wake up is thwarted when Daniel alters the code just in time. As the simulation is shattered, Maura wakes up in Elliot’s playroom with her memories. On the other hand, her son experiences the same destiny as the other travellers.
Elliot learns through his memories that his mother gave him the injection that erased his memories. He is also a part of a simulation, just like everyone else, therefore when the simulation expires, this version of him will too. Now that the next simulation has begun, he will awaken, but Elliot does not exist in reality. While Elliot was the son of Daniel and Maura, it was also made known that he had a terminal illness. Although Maura built the simulation so she could be with her son, there are signs scattered throughout the programme that Elliot passed away before that could happen.
The biggest red flag is that Maura intentionally relinquishes her memory in order to “forget the agony.” We have Elliott’s grave as proof. His playroom appears in the same location in the simulation as it does in reality, where he is buried beneath it. In a scene, it is revealed that this is the same location where Elliot and Maura had a picnic. Elliot found Alfred the beetle there and, following his mother’s advice, let it go free. It makes reasonable that Maura interred her son there because the location has sentimental value to her. Elliot is therefore dead in the actual world even though he continues to appear in the simulation, where he could have been added as just another piece of code.
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