Does Dan time travel in the Archive 81 ending? What is the Baldung? Who is Kaelego? And will there be an Archive 81 season 2 on Netflix? Find the answers to these questions and many others right here!
How about that Archive 81 ending?! Do you have as many questions as we did after binge-watching the series on Netflix. Well, if you want answers, facts, or just more details about this crazy world, then check out our FAQ below. Including many facts and details from the showrunner.
Please note, the below is full of spoilers for Archive 81. If you’re simply looking for a season 1 review, then click here to read our Archive 81 review >
Okay, let’s get to that Archive 81 ending and details about the universe of the new Netflix series.
What or who is Kaelego?
Kaelego is a demon god in the form of a statue with a cult following.
What or who is the Baldung?
The Baldung is an ancient coven of witches. They fight against Kaelego and the cult. Specifically, they want to prevent the opening of the doors of The Otherworld.
What is The Otherworld?
The Otherworld is a pocket dimension between our world and Kaelego’s realm.
It can appear as a form of time travel to us viewers, but that isn’t entirely correct. Find out why in the below Q & A section.
Also, if you’ve watched the Netflix series The Irregulars, you’ll be familiar with a vaguely similar concept.
Does Dan time travel in the Archive 81 end?
Archive 81 showrunner Sonnenshine says what happened as a different kind of twist on time travel tropes. “This is, for us, just a new spin on time travel,” the showrunner said. “Which is, it’s kind of going through another dimension. It’s not what we think of as time travel.
But there’s so much of this show that’s about time and how it moves and what is it and is it a flat circle? Is it an expanding universe? Is it a block universe? We don’t know. But the adage of having this alternate dimension puts a new playground in play.
I think for us in terms of, well, someone went in the nineties and someone went in our present day. Does that mean there’s little holes that you can travel through? So that was always kind of the idea. It’s not a time machine. It’s something different. It’s a way to bend time through an alternate dimension.”
Is Archive 81 inspired by other movies and series?
In addition to the original Archive 81 found footage horror podcast (which loosely inspired the series) the show draws from seminal horror and paranoia thrillers such as The Shining, Suspiria, and Rosemary’s Baby.
In fact, there are specifically Rosemary’s Baby and Solaris Easter eggs seen throughout the Netflix series.
Cult classic TV series including the X-Files, Twin Peaks, and Fringe also served as inspirations.
Is Archive 81 in the found footage genre?
The Netflix series is a new take on the found footage genre. It combines footage from the tapes Dan is restoring along with a collection of junk media floating around in basements and on the internet.
Every episode starts with one of these pieces of “junk media” as a teaser. Each one reveals a secret about the episode that we’ll return to before it’s over.
Will there be an Archive 81 Season 2?
According to Archive 81 showrunner Rebecca Sonnenshine “The idea is that we continue on with these characters into a new season should we be so lucky to get a second season”.
The showrunner went on to say “It wasn’t conceived as a one-season show. I think there are more stories to tell. I think we end on a good cliffhanger that needs to be addressed. We introduce a lot of characters that surround Dan and Melody that have very rich and interesting lives to explore further. So yeah, we hope to keep going.”
What’s with the demonic face in the video footage?
Throughout the Archive 81 series, Dan sees a demonic face sporadically pop up in the video footage he’s archiving. This was inspired by the concept of “spirit photography”.
What is spirit photography?
The concept of “spirit photography” is the idea that souls or spirits can be captured in a photograph.
Spirit photography was popularized around the Civil War by photographers who hoped their lost loved ones would show themselves through their images.
Is the Visser Tune an original tune?
The haunting Visser Tune we hear throughout the series was a huge part of the story from the very beginning. This meant composers Geoff Barrow and Ben Salisbury were involved early on in the creative process.
The tune was originally meant to have lyrics but developed into something more simple and primal, with a breath pattern instead. Many variations of the song were created. From a piano version to a music box to a jazz version.
Also, the tune finds its way into the score as the season goes on.
What language does the cult speak?
The writers worked with a language consultant to create the original language that is written and spoken by members of the cult within the show.
Ultimately, the consultant came up with a totally unique dialect that he recorded for the actors to learn and fashioned an alphabet for it.
Does Dina Shihabi (Melody) shoot her own footage?
Much of Melody’s video camera footage that we see throughout the show was primarily shot by actress Dina Shihabi, who actually operated a real Hi8mm Sony while acting within the scenes.
This was a bit of a risk but it made for a more authentic result.
Other Netflix series ARCHIVE 81 fun facts
The costumes, hair, make-up, and set design seen in the 1994 sequences were meant to have a timeless feeling while still capturing the essence of the period.
Since the characters don’t have much money, they mostly wear vintage looks rather than the latest fashions. And most of the music we see Melody listening to is from the 80s since many students at the time didn’t have much money to spend on new music.
The mold in Archive 81
The mold we repeatedly see throughout the series is meant to be quite different from the black mold you find growing in a damp bathroom.
It’s an organic, precisely patterned growth from another dimension. The inspiration came from the interior of a cabbage. In other words, it’s the pattern you find if you cut a head of cabbage in half.
Once you realize this you cannot unsee it. Trust me!
The lead actors have a past
This is Dina Shihabi and Mamoudou Athie’s first time on-screen together. However, they’ve known each other for over a decade and first met as young actors in New York.