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His Dark Materials season 2 trailer kicks off a Great War and a Subtle Knife

Darker and more material-y

Susana Polo is an entertainment editor at Polygon, specializing in pop culture and genre fare, with a primary expertise in comic books. Previously, she founded The Mary Sue.

His Dark Materials season one might not have made a big splash in the US, but it was huge for the BBC, and that hugeness is all over footage of the show’s second season, featuring air balloon chases, sci-fi sets, and even a creepy dust monster.

The second season — launched into pre-production before the first aired in November 2019 — will tackle the second book in Phillip Pullman’s bestselling trilogy, The Subtle Knife. In the book, Lyra (played by Logan’s Daphne Keen) ventures to her first world beyond her own, and meets another dimensional traveler, the young Will Parry (Amir Wilson), who becomes her companion for the rest of the series. As Lyra’s destiny is intertwined with the Golden Compass, Will’s is to possess the Subtle Knife, a blade so sharp it can carve doors between worlds.

Meanwhile, it seems like the television adaptation will be filling out the season with lots of goings on between the grownup characters of the His Dark Materials books, as they prepare for a inter-dimensional war on ... checks notes ... God. Returning characters will include Mrs. Coulter (Ruth Wilson), Lord Boreal (Ariyon Bakare), and Lee Scoresby (Hamilton’s Lin-Manuel Miranda), as well as new characters John Parry (Andrew Scott), Ruta Skadi (Jade Anouka), and Dr. Mary Malone (Simone Kirby).

His Dark Materials season 2 will premiere on HBO and HBOMax in November.

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