Dark is Netflix’s first German-language show, and at first blush, that appears to be the most novel thing about it.
The 10-episode thriller from Baran bo Odar and Jantje Friese, described in its synopsis as “a family saga with a supernatural twist,” echoes Stranger Things and IT in a big way, derivations that are emphasized heavily in the show’s first full trailer. From the unwilling child being treated like a lab rat, to the aerial shot of a troubled small town’s rooftops, to the mysterious disappearance of children, to the foreboding subterranean portal, to the shot of a search party trying to track the missing children down, to the scrappy band of kiddos taking things into their own hands, to the flashlights flickering at the implied appearance of evil, to … we digress.
However, while originality may not be Dark’s strong suit, that’s not to say there’s nothing to like about this trailer. Stellar cinematography abounds, with one transfixing shot after another, and the clip’s emphasis on time travel—“The beginning is the end, and the end is the beginning”—suggests something far more cerebral than a story of Demogorgons and demon clowns. And to be fair, Stranger Things absolutely wears its own influences on its sleeve, as evidenced by videos like this one and this one. Perhaps Dark, too, will be something more than the sum of its parts.
We’ll find out when Dark hits Netflix on Dec. 1. Watch the first trailer above, revisit the series’ initial teaser right here and find our picks for Netflix’s 20 best sci-fi shows here.