His Dark Materials streaming First on Showmax from November
Fans can’t wait to watch the HBO adaptation of the popular fantasy books.
Philip Pullman’s magnificent trilogy of novels, His Dark Materials, are among the best-loved works of fantasy fiction. In the books, he created a rich universe full of magic and mystery. There has been an attempt to adapt them for the screen before – the 2007 film The Golden Compass starring Nicole Kidman – but it really didn’t live up to expectations.
Now, in the hands of HBO and the BBC, a lavish new series has been produced that promises to do justice to the Lyra’s rich and fascinating world.
The eight-episode series His Dark Materials is streaming First on Showmax in South Africa from 5 November 2019.
Already renewed for a second season and distributed worldwide by HBO, His Dark Materials is now getting the richly detailed canvas of big-budget, serialised, episodic storytelling to do justice to this magnificent fantasy.
Never read His Dark Materials? No problem – you can discover it all through the beautifully crafted adaptation, just like you probably did the first time you were immersed in the worlds of Star Wars, Harry Potter or Game of Thrones. We promise you it won’t be difficult.
We’re not going to spoil anything for you besides giving you the basic background and must-know things to fully prepare you to enter the world of the Magisterium with confidence.
Everything starts with Lyra (Dafne Keen), an ordinary-looking, but extraordinarily brave teenage girl from a magical world embarking on a quest to search for a kidnapped friend.
Her journey will take her through many different worlds, parallel universes, if you will – including one that looks similar to ours – with magic present in them all, in her journey north to solve a very big mystery.
You’ll meet her explorer uncle Asriel (James McAvoy), the adventurer and “aeronaut” Lee Scoresby (Lin-Manuel Miranda), a courageous boy named Will Parry (Amir Wilson), and a score of extraordinary beings ranging from witches to an armoured polar bear. There’s even an airship.
In this story, all humans have talking animal companions called daemons (think of the Patronus spell in Harry Potter). Everybody’s animal is different and, in the simplest explanation, is the outer manifestation of your personality. For instance, if your daemon is a snake, you’re probably not a very good person.
Three more things: In Lyra’s search for her kidnapped friend she’ll uncover a sinister plot involving stolen children. You will hear about and see something called an alethiometer, an ancient device of which there are only a few and no more can be built, that’s basically a magical symbol reader.
Lastly, there is a mysterious particle called Dust. Don’t worry – you don’t need to know what it is before you start watching. The fun is going to be in watching His Dark Materials to discover what it is, and how Dust and everything else fit together.