Dark Season 3 Family Tree Explained and Who Dies at the End

We try to unpick the complex timelines and relationships of Netflix's Dark season 3.

Dark Season 3 episode 1
Photo: Netflix

Dark has one one of the most intricate and complex storylines on Netflix. The whole time-travel thing means that people are given countless chances to re-do and relive big life events, and it all results in one very messy and convoluted situation of borderline incest. Yep, you read that right. 

The family trees in the show are a bit bizarre, and you definitely can’t enjoy Dark as an easy watch-it-on-my-phone sort of show – you need every brain cell you have to understand the twisted branches of Dark‘s families.

If you’ve been watching Dark since series one, you won’t be surprised that Season 3 weaves together an even more mind-boggling tale of intertwined families. 

Jonas pretty much begins AND ends the Kahnwald family tree. His father was Michael Kahnwald, who is actually Mikkel Nielsen, and his mother was Hannah Kruger. Mikkel’s parents are Jana and Tronte, who had very mysterious lineages until this season. Tronte’s father is known as the ‘Unknown’, but he is actually Martha and Jonas’ son. So this means Jonas is Martha’s nephew AND her great-great-grandfather. Hmm… 

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Charlotte’s family tree is perhaps even stranger. Charlotte Doppler is the adopted granddaughter of Tannhaus, but until the end of season 3, we didn’t know who Charlotte’s parents were. Noah, who travels in time, reads Claudia’s diary and finds that Charlotte is his daughter. 

In the present day, Charlotte is married to Peter Doppler and they have two daughters, Elisabeth and Franziska. After the apocalypse, Peter is killed while trying to protect his daughter from a rapist. Elisabeth is hiding in a bunker and runs into Noah, they then get married and have a daughter, which ends up being Charlotte. Charlotte is stolen from her parents’ care. But! It is actually Elisabeth and the older Charlotte that kidnap Charlotte and take her to Tannhaus, So, Charlotte is Elisabeth’s mother AND daughter. Elisabeth is also Noah’s granddaughter/wife… 

All three series of Dark have been a yo-yo of emotions and a rollercoaster of confusion, and it’s finally come to an end. The ending was always going to be one that was difficult to understand and left viewers with questions, because that’s exactly what creators Jantje Firese and Daran Bo Odar have done all along. So, if you were left wondering who lives and who dies, especially with those tricky family trees, we’ve got you covered. 

First of all, it’s important to mention that it isn’t so much who died, but who disappeared. As the worlds they lived in ceased to exist, we can’t really put it down to death – as they were technically never really there. 

In short, anybody who was a product of time-travel in the first place, now ceases to exist. Both the Adam and Eva worlds ended when Jonas and Martha stopped the knot, sadly, the pair faded away and no longer exist. 

It sounds pretty brutal that Jonas and Martha knew that if they managed to end the knot, their loved ones would also fade away. But, they knew they had to do it for the greater good, as everybody was continuing to suffer and re-suffer from every mistake and painful incident that had occurred. 

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Silja is gone because she was a child of Hannah and Egon, which means that Hanno and Agnes also never existed. So, all of Agnes’ children were never born. That means no Magnus, Mikkel or Mads either. This means Mikkel could never go back in time and so, Jonas and Michael Kahnwald are gone too. 

Because the Hanno/Noah character never existed, Elisabeth never got pregnant. So the whole Elisabeth – Charlotte – Charlotte – Elizabeth paradox is wiped, including Franziska. Confused? Yep, us too! 

In better news, anybody who wasn’t born out of time-travel managed to stay alive. The Tiedmann family are all safe. Doris and Egon, as well as their daughter Claudia and granddaughter Regina, go on to have seemingly long and happy lives. 

But, even though Regina is safe, unfortunately her son Bartosz isn’t. Regina met her should-be-husband and Bartosz’ father, Boris Niewald turned Aleksander Köhler, when running from Katharina and Ulrich, but because the pair are only now one, Regina never met Bartosz’ father. 

The final dinner party scene gives a good understanding of who is left, and they seem to be pretty happy. We learn that even though Jonas is gone, some of him still lives on in Hannah’s memory – well, more like déjà vu or a ‘glitch in the Matrix’ – so, in true Dark fashion, we can never be totally sure who is and isn’t still around.