Aughra, the Keeper of Secrets
Performed by: Frank Oz, Mike Edmonds (puppetry, 1982), Kiran Shah (body double, 1982), Kevin Clash (puppetry, 2019)
Voiced by: Billie Whitelaw (1982), Donna Kimball (2019)
Appears in: The Dark Crystal: Creation Myths | The Dark Crystal: Age of Resistance | The Dark Crystal
Aughra, Keeper of Secrets is the very essence of the world of Thra itself. An old hermit with a gorilla-like face who lives in a brain-shaped observatory atop a mountain, Aughra is wise and experienced enough to know the joy of the world before the takeover by the Skeksis.
- All-Loving Hero: In spite of her grouchy attitude, Aughra has boundless compassion and empathy for all life on Thra. Even when it's led astray like the Ascendancy and Seladon, her response isn't condemnation, but rather maternal disappointment. And she'll be right there to help them back to their feet the moment they need it.
- Ambiguous Gender: The character is meant to be a combination of male and female genders, but still sounds like a bossy old battleaxe of a grandmother and has visible breasts.
- In Age of Resistance, several characters add "mother" when calling her by name, most notably Deet. And Raunip (from the Creation Myths comics) outright calls her his mother.
- The expanded universe states that when they were first created, they were a perfectly even combination of the male and female sexes as an incarnation of Thra's biosphere, but most of the male part of her was burned away by the same Great Conjunction that destroyed her eye.
- Ascended Extra: She had relatively little screentime in the original film. In Age of Resistance she becomes a viewpoint character with her own story arc.
- The Atoner: Age of Resistance reveals that the Skeksis bought her off by indulging her scientific curiosity, with her being distracted by the Orrery for centuries before the Darkening brings her back and sets her to desperately trying to fix her mess, well aware she could have stopped it long ago.
- Badass Boast: When a Threader attempts to possess her, Aughra simply plucks it off and says to it "What? You dare try to control Aughra? Aughra can barely control Aughra!" before fastballing it into the woods.
- Big Good: Her true nature is more implied than explored in The Dark Crystal, however Age Of Resistance reveals she essentially is Thra, or at least a personification of it. She plays an active role in fighting the Darkening and the Skeksis, and tasks Rian and his comrades with ending their rule for good once she learns how the Skeksis have abused the Crystal in an effort to restore the rightful balance of the world.
- Cloud Cuckoolander: Sometimes Aughra doesn't seem to be entirely there in the head; when Jen mentions the urRu Master sent him and Aughra asks where he is, she responds to Jen telling her he had died by looking around and noting he could therefore be anywhere.
- Cluster F-Bomb: A G-rated example is the scene where Aughra shouts fantastic profanity at the Skeksis.Aughra: Moldy mildew, mother of mouthmuck, dangle and strangle and death!note
- Cool Old Lady: Most prominently in Age of Resistance. She's as old as Thra itself, and she's as quirky as she's an inspiring figure.
- Dark Is Not Evil: She may look like a menacing hermit with a gorilla-like face, but she is one of the good guys.Aughra: Are you afraid of me? Think I'm going to EAT YOU? HMM?
- Did You Just Flip Off Cthulhu?: She has no fear of the Skeksis, and when questioned on why she has the ballsnote to treat them with disrespect, she retorts that their time is coming, so she's unafraid of them.
- Disappointed in You: She acts this way towards most of the people she meets, even the Skesis where she comes off more like a mother angry at the trouble her children have caused. Especially when they don't take her advice.Aughra: Fine. Aughra tried.
- Earthy Barefoot Character: Because of her connection to Thra, she never wears any footwear.
- Eccentric Mentor: She has a funny way of speaking, but is a wise woman.
- Everyone Can See It: Aughra's actions imply that she knows something is going on between Rian and Deet. In the season one finale, she's the only one that notices Rian has wandered into the woods searching for Deet and gives a furtive nod in his direction.
- Eye Scream:
- She can remove her own eyeball at will and use it like a remote camera. While it doesn't hurt her, it certainly is weird.
- In the backstory, she lost her other eye and came to be how she looks in the film when she laid on the ground to watch the Great Conjunction that brought the urSkeks to Thra. A beam of intense light struck her eye, destroying it and burning her badly. She considers it a worthwhile trade.
- Genius Loci: of Thra itself.
- Good Is Not Nice: She can be rude to anyone she meets, but she does mean well.
- The Hermit: She lives alone in her observatory/laboratory.
- I Was Quite a Looker: While she's old, wrinkly, and kinda resembles a gorilla, back when she was first created, Aughra looked very much like a wood nymph.◊
- Jerk with a Heart of Gold: While she may be a jerk, she is a very good person at heart.
- Kidnapped Scientist: She gets kidnapped by the Garthim after they raid her home, although they don't do it because the Skeksis have any need of her science, it's just that the Garthim are mindless mooks who mistook her for a Gelfling.
- Mother Nature: Relative to the beings actually native to Thra, "Mother Nature" would be a perfectly accurate description of her.
- My God, What Have I Done?: Her entire reaction in Age of Resistance. After her thousand years slumber of searching through the stars, she comes back to a Thra that is dying because she gave the crystal over to the Skesis who abused her gift. She begins to blame herself for the Darkening all the damage it's causing to the creatures living in Thra.
- Really 700 Years Old: As the Expanded Universe clarifies, she's in fact almost three thousand years old, having lived through the first two Great Conjunctions and seen all the eras of the urSkeks, Skeksis and urRu/Mystics (and all the terror, bloodshed and sorrow) firsthand. By the end of the movie, she's lived through the third Great Conjunction and has officially hit the 3000 mark.
- She's Back: When she returns from her voyage through the stars, she finds herself disconnected from Thra. Her seemingly fruitless efforts provoke a minor Heroic BSoD. Once she stops trying to make Thra sing to her, and listens, her power Third Eye opens, and she hears the song of Thra again, leading to her reveling in rediscovering her power.
- Significant Wardrobe Shift: At the start of Age of Resistance Aughra wears heavy blue and gold robes as opposed to the lighter red dress from the film. When she emerges reborn from within the Hunter as he dies for good, she's switched to her red movie dress, suggesting it was made from the Hunter's own vestments. In a blink and you'll miss it moment, you can even see her checking out her new threads upon her rebirth.
- Simple Staff: Carries a staff of wood.
- Solitary Sorceress: Lives by herself in a mountain cave.
- Thanatos Gambit: She arranges to give her essence to heal the Hunter in exchange for the Gelflings' freedom, knowing she will be reborn once the Hunter dies for good.
- Third-Person Person: She often refers to herself by her own name. Although, she does use "I" in the film in several instances.
- Third Eye: She initially has three eyes; one is fully functional and even detachable, the other is missing, and the third on her forehead appears to be blank and dead in it's socket. However in Age of Resistance, her third eye glows yellow when she hears the song of Thra once more.
- We Used to Be Friends: Age of Resistance reveals that she and the Skeksis were once quite close back when they were still the urSkeks and apparently in the earlier years after their sundering, when their darker impulses had not yet taken control to the point that she thought she could trust them to keep the Crystal of Truth safe. She is horrified to learn that they misused the Crystal and is very disgusted by how the Skeksis have degenerated over the centuries. She appears to have been especially close to the Scientist, even back when he was TekTih, and the Hunter, with the former almost sad about having to drain her essence, and Aughra herself lamenting the Hunter's death.
Voiced by: Joseph O'Conor (1982)
Appear in: The Dark Crystal
A race of creatures not native to Thra who travelled there through the Crystal before it was corrupted and shattered. They were noble beings shining with an inner light, however, in attempting to perfect themselves, they instead tore themselves apart to become two distinct races, the urRu/Mystics and the Skeksis.
- Ambiguously Evil: Though portrayed as benevolent in the film, the series and supplementary materials lend a lot of moral ambiguity to the urSkeks; fitting as they are the amalgamation of both the kindness and empathy of the Mystics and the ambition and cruelty of the Skeksis. Aughra looks upon the urSkeks as benevolent beings and sees the Skeksis as cruel beings on their own who perverted the actions of the urSksks while Raunip distrusts them for being outsiders who were exiled from their own homeworld. However, skekGra attributes the deception of Aughra and the coveting of the Crystal to the urSkeks and the Skeksis simply following in those footsteps.
- Ascend to a Higher Plane of Existence: At the end of the film, they ascend to the skies after being made whole again, though it's more likely they're simply returning to their homeworld.
- Balance Between Good and Evil: They split apart between their evil part (the Skeksis) and good part (the Mystics). Those two parts ended up being balanced again when merged.
- Benevolent Alien Invasion: Zigzagged. They did uplift the gelflings from roughly hunter-gather-level technology to mideval-level, but they also bribed Thra's Mother Nature Genius Loci into abandoning her children, since the urSkeks coveted Thra's crystal. Then when they spilt into the urRu and Skeksis, their urRu halves basically wandered off to become amish hermits for the next thousand trine, with the Skeksis halves remaining in charge. From there, the Skeksis' rule starts out benevolent, then gradually slides through Bread and Circuses, and then in the series we see it finally achieve the state of full-blown despotism that its in during the movie.
- Bizarre Alien Psychology: Implied. urSkek society is highly collectivistic, which to greatly simplify things meaning that the Community is considered more important than the individual, and individuals value collective unity more than individuality. That's not the bizarre part, since 90% of Earth cultures have been that way. The bizzare part comes later. Anyway, their society is so Collectivistic that any deviant behavior is considered Heretical, the appropriate punishment for which being banishment (still not out of the ordinary compared to Earth's collectivistic cultures). According to them, "Mastering One's darker self" is what it means to be an urSkek (probably mere hyperbole, like when philosophers ask what it means to be human), to the point that when the particular urSkeks we meet in the franchise tried to monkey around with their world's Crystal (which to be fair could reasonably warrant banishment regardless of how collectivistic your society is), they were banished and only allowed to return once they had, indeed, mastered their darker selves. The bizarre alien psychology part is that, considering they had to devise a magical purification process that would only work when the suns aligned, AND that the entire thing was screwed up for everyone just by one of them getting a bit nostalgic, "mastering one's darker self" probably isn't as simple for an ursSkek as just working through their emotions and learning restraint or humility.
- The Cameo: In The Dark Crystal: Age of Resistance, skekGra the Heretic and urGoh the Wanderer perform a puppet show for Brea, Rian, Deet and Hup to inform them about the true nature of the Skeksis and Mystics and tell them what to do next. At some point, there's an urSkek puppet.
- Crystal Spires and Togas: While we don't yet know how many spires their planet has, we do know it has a capital-C-Crystal, and the ones we get to see certainly do wear togas.
- Energy Beings: Maybe. They certainly look the part, but not a lot of information is given about them compared to their splintered selves, and they're never shown walking through physical objects or anything, so they may simply be perfectly corporeal organisms that happen to be bioluminescent. While they do appear slightly transparent in the Movie, they do not display this trait in the comics, so that may have simply been an FX side effect.
- Ethereal Choir: They start chanting upon being restored to their former selves.
- Fusion Dance: The surviving urRu and Skeksis are rejoined into their original urSkeks forms at the end.
- Light 'em Up: They constantly emit light.
- Light Is Good: Overall, they were noble and wise beings until they foolishly shattered the Crystal. Jen restores them to their former selves and the first and last thing they do before they Ascend to a Higher Plane of Existence is to resurrect Kira.
- Light Is Not Good: The comics present an alternative to the urSkeks' behavior and personality. This particular group of urSkeks were actually exiled from their home planet for being too emotional — they were exiled until they learned to control their emotions. They are not exactly criminals but are treated as such by their own people. Their own imbalance led to the Crystal shattering in the first place. Whether this is true to the show/movie canon remains to be seen.
- skekGra and urGoh's account seems to support this, noting how they deliberately wooed and deceived Aughra into handing over the Crystal to use for their own ends.
- It didn't help that Raunip darkened their hearts further by distrusting them for not being natives of Thra.
- Not Quite the Right Thing: They were exiled, but given a clause that explained they could return if they mastered the darker aspects of themselves. To do this, they spent centuries perfecting a process that would theoretically burn their undesirable traits away. Because of this, all it took was a bit of nostalgia on the part of one of them to completely compromise their entire ritual.
- Our Angels Are Different: They certainly look the part aside from the ugly (to us) bride-of-Frankenstien-esque hair, and may or may not be Energy Beings.
- Walking Spoiler: In the Series, at least. Borders on It Was His Sled with the 80's movie. Averted in the Comics.
Vliste-Staba the Sanctuary Tree
Voiced by: Theo Ogundipe
Appears in: The Dark Crystal: Age of Resistance
Perched on the hills that roll down from the Mountains of Grot, Vliste-Staba is a wise old tree with pink petals and roots going down to the caverns underneath.
Appears in: The Dark Crystal: Creation Myths
The more-or-less adoptive son of Aughra. He was also born from Thra and is curious about the planet. Unlike Aughra who was more reserved, Raunip was more outgoing, adventurous and inquisitive, leading to him to befriend many of Thra's races, especially the Gelflings, and earning the ire of the urSkeks.
- The Atoner: Becomes this after unwittingly causing the Crystal to fracture.
- Canon Foreigner: So far, has only appeared in the comic, it is unknown if he exist in the film/movie.
- One location mentioned in the series is called "Raunip's Pass." Based on this, Raunip must have existed in some capacity before.
- Not So Different: Raunip hates the urSkeks because they are alien and not native to Thra. Aughra reveals that Raunip is not a "true" son of Thra either, having been born from an organic meteorite Aughra melded into Raunip. This revelation leads him to becoming The Atoner.
- Satanic Archetype: Sort of. While Raunip is not evil at all, he is very curious and questions everything. This is in contrast to his mother Aughra who was more willing to observe as things happen. Raunip's views clash with Aughra's constantly. Since Aughra is essentially the "god" of Thra, Raunip ends up filling the role of Satan, being the tempter who causes distrust against others, such as the urSkeks and later the Skeksis.
- Unwitting Instigator of Doom: He was openly distrustful of the urSkeks upon their arrival and constantly questioned their intent. This ultimately led to the Crystal breaking and becoming the Dark Crystal and the creation of the urRu and Skeksis.
Performed by: Kevin Clash (Gruenak #1), Neil Sterenberg (Gruenak #2)
Appear in: The Dark Crystal: Age of Resistance
A race previously wiped out by the Skeksis. Two survivors were discovered and enslaved to act as skekTek's assistants.
- An Offer You Can't Refuse: The Chamberlain offers them their freedom if they help him in his scheming to unseat the General. When they comply, he creatively reinterprets the terms of their deal so that they are still trapped serving the Scientist.
- Butt-Monkey: NOT Played for Laughs. Their lives are utterly awful, nothing good ever happens to them, and they die tragically.
- Cruel and Unusual Death: One is thrown into the Crystal's shaft to be incinerated at the bottom. The other is savagely beaten to death by the Scientist wielding a hunk of metal and its body is used to create the first Garthim.
- Gadgeteer Genius: They were given to the Scientist because their race was known for being mechanically inclined.
- Hope Spot: They get two brief ones. The Chamberlain praises their good work in helping restore his old position beside the Emperor... and then declines to free them as promised. They then decide to take matters into their own hands, unstitch their mouths and try to escape... Only to get caught by the Scientist when he returns to the lab sooner than expected, and he kills them in a fit of rage.
- Human Resources: One has its body used as an ingredient in creating the first Garthim.
- The Igor: They serve as this for skekTek against their will.
- Last of Their Kind: The Skeksis believed the race had been completely wiped out before these last two were captured.
- Mouth Stitched Shut: Both have their mouths sewn shut by the Chamberlain to keep them from spilling the secrets of the essence extraction machine.
- Pint-Sized Powerhouse: Despite their small size, skekSil praises them as being exceptionally physically strong. This (nearly) helps them escape later, as they give the larger and stronger skekTek a good No-Holds-Barred Beatdown before he gains the upper hand and kills them.
- Shoot the Shaggy Dog: What their entire lives amount to. The Skeksis wiped out their entire race and then found and captured the two of them, enslaved them, sewed their mouths shut, forced them to help commit horrific experiments and drain Gelflings, and then after a brief Hope Spot the Chamberlain renegs on his deal to free them, and they both die horribly at the hands of the Scientist.
- Yank the Dog's Chain: The Chamberlain promises to free them if they help restore his old position beside the Emperor. He admits they did a great job, but their service to him is still not done.
- You No Take Candle: The one time one of them speaks,it's like this. Protesting that they deserve freedom is "No! No slave!" and condemning skekTek as evil is "You bad!" It's a tossup as to whether Gruenaks naturally speak this way or whether he was just having difficulty forming complete sentences after not having spoken for so long.
Arathim / The Arathim Ascendancy
Appear in: The Dark Crystal: Age of Resistance
A race of giant arthropods driven from the Caves of Grot by the Skeksis. They desire to return to their ancestral home through any means necessary. There are two types of Arathim: the giant Silk Spitters and the small Threaders.
- An Offer You Can't Refuse: The Emperor offers them the Caves of Grot in exchange for helping the Skeksis crush the Gelfling uprising. They accept, unaware that the Darkening had already infected the flora and megafauna of Grot making the whole region a massive deathtrap, ensuring the Arathim would be wiped out along with the Gelfling.
- Anti-Villain: The Arathim Ascendancy get into conflicts with the Gelflings, but only because they've been deprived of their home, as it is later revealed.
- Big Creepy-Crawlies: Silk Spitter Arathim, the soldier caste, are roughly twice the size of a Gelfling and resemble heavily armored six-legged spiders.
- Bond Creatures: It is revealed that after extended periods of time linked, their People Puppets and themselves merge permanently and become one and the same.
- Body of Bodies: They all form up into huge faces when addressing other species.
- Catchphrase: "We are The Ascendancy!", a phrase usually uttered after they take over someone's body.
- Creepy Good: They're a strange hive-mind of monstrous spiders, but they're not evil. They throw their lot in with the Gelflings and one Threader helps Mother Aughra. In the final episode one Silk Spitter goes to hug Gurjin after the day has been won; creepy, but endearing nonetheless.
- Foil: The Arathin Ascendancy provides a interesting parallel to the Skeksis and the Mystics. The Skeksis and the Mystics were a union split apart, and now either desperately craving or repulsed by possibly being whole again. The Arathin Ascendancy, on the other hand, remained a harmonious unity and cannot be split apart. Furthermore, unlike the Skeksis and the Mystics, they can incorporate others to their single one via the Puppeteer Parasite bond.
- Freudian Excuse: Late in the first season, they receive a great reason for their aggressiveness towards seemingly everyone: the Skeksis expelled them from their home and the Gelflings, none the wiser, moved in. From the Arathin perspective, they're all thieves.
- Hidden Depths: At first glance the Arathin look just like mindless Big Creepy-Crawlies but over the course of the story it is revealed they have sentience, capacity of speech and a societal organization via "The Arathin Ascendancy". It is also eventually revealed they have a great reason for being seemingly so vicious.
- Hive Mind: All Arathim are linked, essentially forming one giant mind made of thousands of smaller parts.
- Human Resources: The Arathim are used as a major ingredient in the creation of the Garthim.
- Giant Spiders: They mostly look like oversized six-legged spiders.
- Good All Along: For a given value of "good," they are just another race as victimized by the Skeksis as the Gelfling, and once they recognize that they become fast allies.
- I Am Legion: The Arathim Ascendancy almost always speaks in plural terms, to unnerving effect.
- Insectoid Alien: They are aliens. Who are insectoid.
- A Lighter Shade of Black: They're hostile towards the Gelflings for taking their home, not realizing the Skeksis engineered their plight in the first place. That said, they are still a native race of Thra and will put aside their differences if it means expelling the invading Skeksis.
- MookFace Turn: They act as enforcers of the Skeksis for a brief period of time before seeing the error of their ways.
- Names to Run Away from Really Fast: You really would not want trouble with anyone called "The Ascendancy".
- People Puppets: The Ascendancy can use its smaller members to take over lifeforms, such as Gelflings. They apparently have a limit to this (as Aughra observes a Arathin's mind would explode if he tried to take over her), but we haven't seen if they can apply that trick to Skeksis and Mystics yet.
- Puppeteer Parasite: Threader Arathim are this, latching onto faces and taking over the minds of their hosts.
- Slaying Mantis: They use their sharp and pointy forward legs to attack.
- Voice of the Legion: They often talk in a unison of many voices, and their voices always overlap with that of their hosts, creating this effect no matter what.
- We ARE Struggling Together: Deet leads them to understanding this, explaining her people never even knew the Arathim were native to the Caves and that they can live together after they defeat the Skeksis.
- You Can't Go Home Again: The Arathim's ancestral nest was taken over by the Skeksis, and ends up overtaken by the Darkening in Age of Resistance.
Voiced by: Damian Farrell
Appears in: The Dark Crystal: Age of Resistance
A rock golem who gets activated by Brea and becomes her protector for a while. It is revealed skekGra the Heretic and urGoh the Wanderer built him in order to help the Gelflings accomplish the Prophecy.
- The Big Guy: He's the biggest and strongest ally of the Gelfling heroes of Age of Resistance for as long as he's animated.
- The Champion: Lore acts as Brea's guardian and protector.
- Gentle Giant: He's not as dangerous as his stature and physique would suggest.
- Golem: A rock creature who's brought to life when Brea realizes that all the Gefling clans are one.
- Recorded Spliced Conversation: A unusual example in that Lore has seemingly no capacity to actually speak, but communicates via the stone disks in his left arm that can be played by the stone needle in his right (in a manner reminiscent to a vinyl), producing pre-recorded soundbyte messages (recorded by the Heretic). These messages seem to communicate the basic facts about Lore (such as his name and his mission) to those unaware, allowing him to participate in minor, simple conversations.
- Stone Punk: Its arm doubles as a kind of voice record player.
- You Have Outlived Your Usefulness: Unlike most events that fall under this trope, Lore is turned off in the same way one would turn off a machine. The Heretic not understanding how doing this would upset the Gelflings, especially Brea, who Lore was programmed to protect and whom she had grown deeply fond of. However, by the end of the season, it's possible Hup may restart him.
The Podlings / Pod People
Voiced by: Miki Iveria, Patrick Monckton, Sue Wheatherby and Barry Dennen (1982)
Appear in: The Dark Crystal: Age of Resistance | The Dark Crystal
The Podlings, also known as the Pod People, are a race of dwarfish, kindly and simple people with potato-shaped heads who build their tools out of gourds and wood. In their own language, they refer to themselves as apopiapoiopidiappididiapipob, which translates as "master gardeners who live in bulging plants". They have the ability to communicate with animals and live in relative peace, and a clan of them adopted and raised the Gelfling orphan Kira after her parents were killed in the Skeksis' attack on her people.
Before the Gelfling uprising, the Skeksis had Podling servants at the castle of the Crystal. Then the Skeksis revealed their true nature, and started enslaving the Podlings, sending the Garthim to capture more and more of them.
- Actual Pacifist: They are peaceful little people who don't know how to fight.
- Conlang: Podling language in the film uses Serbian words (or Croatian, or Bosnian they're very similar languages), but is pronounced with an accent more akin to Russian.
- Earthy Barefoot Character: They don't wear any footwear. Kira is the same as they, having been raised with them. However, some Pod People are seen wearing slippers.
- Empty Shell: Once their life essence is drained by the Skeksis, they become zombified slaves. They return to normal after the Crystal is healed.
- Fantastic Racism: At the time of Age of Resistance, many Gelflings look at Podlings with disdain and consider them inferior beings, to say nothing of what the Skeksis think of their Servant Race. They're the lowest echelon in the social hierarchy after the Skeksis and the Gelflings.
- Friend to All Living Things: They live in harmony with nature and communicate with animals. Kira's clan taught her the latter ability.
- Hobbits: Probably the closest race the Dark Crystal universe has to them.
- Life of the Party: They love to throw a party, drink and and dance.
- Nice Guys: The Podlings of Kira's clan are very cheerful and nice people. Nice enough to throw a party to welcome Jen.
- The Pig Pens: In Age of Resistance, Podlings of the clan Brea is forced to help clean as punishment love playing in the mud and throwing mud at each other. One Pod Person is even seen eating literal mud pies (although considering they're aliens, this might not be as big a deal for them as it would be for us).
- Rapid Aging: Podlings (and any other creatures) who get drained of their essence by the Skeksis Scientist's refratcing device end up looking older than they previously were moments earlier. This is reversed once the Crystal is healed.
- Servant Race: The Skeksis had Podling servants at the castle of the Crystal before the Gelfling uprising. Then it became straight-up slavery, and the Skeksis started capturing more and more Podlings to enslave.
- Slave Race: Many of them end up taken into slavery by the Skeksis after the Gelfling uprising. The Skeksis regularly sent the Garthim on raids to capture more Podlings to enslave.
- Too Happy to Live: They were a race of simple people who lived happily, until the Skeksis started enslaving many of them.
- Those of Kira's clan throw a great party in honor of the reunion of the last two Gelflings... then the Garthim burst through the wall.
Appears in: The Dark Crystal
Kira's adoptive mother. She taught Kira how to speak to the animals and the plants.
- Amazingly Embarrassing Parents: When Ydra approaches Jen and Kira's table during the party, she says, "Jen, viselitye?" And immediately afterward, Kira laughingly retorts, "Ydra!". This implies that she might have said something inappropriate or suggestive about Jen and Kira's potential relationship, which may have embarrassed Kira, even if Jen didn't understand what was said. Ydra enthusiastically dances with Jen afterwards, so go figure.
- Good Parents: She raised Kira as a loving mother.
- Interspecies Adoption: She, a Podling, adopted Kira, a Gelfling.
- Made a Slave: She gets captured and drained of her essence along with all the other Podlings in Kira's village. Thankfully, she's restored when the Crystal is healed, along with the other Podlings.
Performed by: Victor Yerrid
Voiced by: Victor Yerrid
Appears in: The Dark Crystal: Age of Resistance
A Podling whose dream is to become a Paladin. He befriends Deet and makes it his mission to protect her.
- All Love Is Unrequited: Part of why he reacts the way he does with Deet and Rian, as he seems infatuated with Deet, to the point of saying "Deet always beautiful" when she asks him how she looks when in disguise.
- Badass Adorable: He fancies himself a Paladin and waves around a wooden spoon like it's a sword. And still manages to pull off several impressive feats, as Deet is quick to remind him of when he starts doubting himself.
- Berserk Button: Don't insult or hurt Deet. Two Gelflings learn this the hard way.
- Badass Boast: When he headbutts the Spitter or is pulled away from the Gelfling brawl he declares, "Podling Justista!"
- Blowing a Raspberry: He does this when he's particularly unwelcoming to certain people, that being Stonewood Gelflings and Rek'yr.
- Brutal Honesty: He says whats on his mind, especially if he doesn't like a situation. When first encountering skekGra, he is immediately against following the Skeksis Heretic, rightfully pointing out that he's a bit off his rocker.
- The Champion: He considers himself this to Deet, and is even willing to stand against skekMal the Hunter if Deet is in danger.
- A Day in the Limelight: Gelflings, Skeksis and Mystics had plenty of focus in the 1982 film, the Podlings not so much. Now, with Age of Resistance, there's a fully fleshed out Podling protagonist with the addition of Hup.
- Declaration of Protection: While he doesn't outright say it, he does go out of his way to protect Deet and goes into a fury if she's hurt.
- Everyone Can See It: He seems aware that there's something going on between Rian and Deet, but his response is to shake his head disdainfully.
- Hard Head: He can give a headbutt to a Spitter with no apparent recoil while the creature is thrown onto its back. Although, to be fair, he was tied up and had to have Deet swing him into the Spitter.
- Heroes Prefer Swords: Or spoons. While about as far away from being a sword as you can get, how Hup treats and wields his spoon nonetheless fits the imagery associated with this trope. Deet directly associates the spoon with a sword on their first meeting, although she first thought it was a magic spoon.
- Improbable Weapon User: He wields a big wooden spoon in lieu of a sword. And he does it with aplomb. It seems to be his preferable weapon as every time he loses a spoon, he always grabs another one, each one bigger than the last.
- Kid-Appeal Character: In some ways. He's a Plucky Comic Relief, likes Blowing a Raspberry, has a cute design and fancies himself a knight with a kitchen tool as sword like kids do when playing.
- Meaningful Name: "Hup", as in the word used to set the cadence for a march. Quite fitting for a fellow who's heart's desire is to become a Paladin.
- The Paladin: He seeks to become one, and joins Deet on her quest for the chance to make it happen. While in this setting "Paladin" refers to the palace guard of the All-Maudra, Hup nonetheless fills many of the traits of the classic Paladin. He's courageous, noble, and dedicated to fighting for a cause by swearing to aid the Gelflings on their quest to fight the Skeksis. When he actually meets the All-Maudra she accepts his service on the spot, but dies before anything can be made official.
- Pintsized Powerhouse: He's about the average height of any other Podling, but that doesn't stop him from going up against creatures twice his size if it's to protect Deet. He even attacks the Hunter when skekMal arrives at the Circle of the Suns.
- Punctuated! For! Emphasis!: His speech pattern at times, even beyond You No Take Candle."Hup... want... die!" *vomits*"No! Hurt! Deet!"
- Red Is Heroic: His main color is red.
- Trash Talk: Although we can't understand him, we can assume that in fights or towards people he doesn't like, Hup is likely doing this.
- Undying Loyalty: He would do absolutely anything for Deet. Whether it's follow her anywhere, or protecting her from harm, the only reason he doesn't stay by her side for the rest of the season is because he has to rest from his injuries he received from the Hunter.
- Vomit Discretion Shot: After being ferried across the Crystal Desert on Rek'yr's flying steed, he spends several minutes vomiting just off-camera.
- You Are Better Than You Think You Are: Ends up on the receiving end of one from Deet after he tells her he can't be a Paladin if he couldn't even save Rian from skekMal.
- You No Take Candle: He has very limited fluency in the Gelflings' language and often goes back to chattering in his own, with mostly context clues making clear what hes saying.
Performed by: Warrick Brownlow-Pike (Podling Servant #1), Louise Gold (Podling Servant #2)
Voiced by: ?
Appears in: The Dark Crystal: Age of Resistance
Four put-upon Podling servants of the Skeksis. Two of them serve as butlers, the other two as minstrels operating a kind of "music machine."
- Butt-Monkey: Much like the Gruenaks. They're constantly abused and mistreated by the Skeksis, even before they turn openly evil. They're belittled, dismissed, smacked around, you name it. In "A Single Piece Was Lost," skekTek, drunk on essence, treats them worse than they've ever been treated before, including crushing the hand of the butler with the combover.
- Comedic Sociopathy: Unlike the Gruenaks, a lot of what they go through is Played for Laughs, such as during the Skeksis' dinner scene, such as when one saves skekAyuk from choking and is hit for it, and the other winds up with food on his head. At least at first. As the series progresses, their treatment gets worse and worse, culminating in their final scene where skekTek crushes one's hand.
- The Comically Serious: The two butlers, especially the older one with the combover, when interacting with Rian in the first episode.
- The Dog Bites Back: The younger butler eventually lets skekTek have it, cursing him out after he breaks his friend's hand.
- Secret Keeper: They overhear a lot in their duties, since despite not speaking the same language as the Gelflings and Skeksis, they clearly understand it. The musicians in particular quite obviously know what the Skeksis are saying during the various scenes of them scheming. They keep their mouths shut about it.
- Sitcom Arch-Nemesis: In simpler times, the butlers had a (mostly) friendly rivalry with Rian and Mira, who would play tricks on them and steal food from them.
- Screw This, I'm Outta Here!: Having just gotten done enduring a tirade from skekTek, the four of them notice skekMal waking up and promptly run from the Castle.
- The Stool Pigeon: The butlers rat on Rian and Mira to Captain Ordon for their latest misadventure in "End. Begin. All the Same." Rian calls them tattle tales.
- Stylistic Suck: The minstrels' music. Completely intentional, as they're not using conventional instruments but a big noise-making machine that plays the kind of cacophonous "music" that the Skeksis like.
- Undying Loyalty / My Master, Right or Wrong: Despite everything, they stick with the Skeksis. Whether this is out of fear, duty or because the Skeksis pay them really well. But eventually it becomes too much for them, and they flee after skekMal wakes up.
Performed by: ?
Voiced by: ?
Appears in: The Dark Crystal: Age of Resistance
A Podling who serves as the caretaker of Aughra's observatory.
- Beleaguered Assistant: Constantly yelled at by Aughra when he's just trying to do his job. Aughra especially doesn't seem to like it when he tries to show concern for her. In general, though, she treats him nicely and he seems to live a good live, quite the opposite of the Podlings employed at the Castle of the Crystal.
- Distracted by My Own Sexy: He sure seems to enjoy how good he looks in the mirror...
- Hard-Work Montage: Him tidying up the observatory while Aughra sleeps.
- Morning Routine: How he's introduced. We see him get up, eat breakast, fix his hair and so forth.
- Really 700 Years Old: Averted. When Aughra wakes up, she initially mistakes him for her original assistant, his grandfather.
- What Happened to the Mouse?: He isn't seen again after Aughra leaves the observatory at the end of the only episode he appears in.
Firelings / U-mun
Appear in: The Power of the Dark Crystal
The Firelings, also called U-mun, are beings made of fire that live deep in the heart of Thra, called Mithra. They evolved from Gelflings and still resemble them, but possess a unique physiology that prevents them from safely interacting with other inhabitants of Thra. As such, they usually remain in Mithra, essentially Thra's core. Because they rarely venture outside of the core, they have little knowledge about the world above.
- Canon Foreigner: So far, they only exist in the comic continuity.
- Flaming Hair: They have fire instead of hair as one of their most distinctive feature.
- Human Subspecies: Gelfling subspecies that is, with Gelflings being the closest species Thra has to humans. Firelings evolved from them, beginning after the first of their people fell into a river of lava and was transformed.
- Matriarchy: Firelings are a matriarchal society like Gelfling society used to be, and are ruled by an Ember Queen.
- Playing with Fire: All Firelings radiate fire and can use it, but this also prevents them from safely interacting with other inhabitants and environments in the surface world of Thra.
- Wreathed in Flames: Their bodies are primarily made of fire.
Appears in: The Power of the Dark Crystal, Beneath the Dark Crystal
A young Ember Queen of the Firelings that exist within Mithra. She is on a quest to save her people from the Darkening, which is snuffing out and killing her people.
- Playing with Fire: As a Fireling, this comes naturally to her.
- Last of Her Kind: She is one of the last Firelings, let alone the last Ember Queen. In later comics, it is revealed there are other Fireling tribes that survived the Dim.
- Long-Distance Relationship: Starts one with Kensho, but their responsibilities keep them apart.
- Royals Who Actually Do Something: Thurma is a young Ember Queen, destined to rule and protect the Firelings. Since most of the Firelings are too sick, she takes it upon herself to find a cure for her people.
- Wreathed in Flames: Her body, like all Firelings, is primarily made of fire. Normally it is controlled but spreads when she becomes angry. It serves as constant protection, since nothing can touch her without getting burnt.