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Trivia / His Dark Materials

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The books

The BBC/HBO series

  • Actor Allusion: As a nod to Dafne Keen's role as X-23 in Logan, in Season 2 Pantalaimon takes the form of a wolverine to intimidate the kids in Cittàgazze and later to battle the Golden Monkey when Lyra and Mrs. Coulter cross paths again.
  • The Cast Showoff: Lee Scoresby's actor Lin-Manuel Miranda is a Tony award winning composer and singer, and in Scoresby's introduction he's singing a duet with Hester. Hester's actress, Cristela Alonzo, is also a capable singer.
  • Dawson Casting:
    • Angelica is supposed to be pre-pubescent, just like Lyra and the original version of Will, but Bella Ramsey was born in 2003, making her 17 years old at the time of airing.
    • Downplayed with Lyra herself, who in the books was 12-going-on-13, yet is played by the 14-year old Dafne Keen, with the character's canonical age being presumably still the same as in the books. It's easy to overlook, though, as Keen doesn't really look much older than Dakota Blue Richards (who was 12-13) from the movie.
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  • Disabled Character, Disabled Actor: Inverted. Actor Matt Fraser has thalidomide-induced phocomelia, and this was incorporated into his character Raymond van Geritt. It's not acknowledged by the characters though.
  • Fake Brit: American actor Clarke Peters does a very convincing RP as the Master of Jordan College.
  • Real-Life Relative: Dafne Keen (Lyra) is the daughter of Will Keen (Father MacPhail)
  • Schedule Slip: Initially averted as the first two series were filmed in 2018 and 2019 (before the series started airing) to avoid the child actors noticeably aging over what's meant to just be a day, which allowed Season 2 to be released on schedule despite the COVID-19 pandemic (minus the episode noted below). However, Season 3 wasn't able to start shooting until June 2021 — although the production team have said that they had always planned on a longer break between the seasons — and, due to the extensive amount of special effects that the story will require, the season likely won't be aired until the latter half of 2022.
  • Shout-Out:
    • The Magical Whistler who works as a child kidnapper for the Oblation Board is one to the Pied Piper.
    • In the first episode of season two, Pan turns into a wolverine, a nod to Dafne Keen's role in Logan.
  • What Could Have Been: Season 2 was planned to have a standalone episode centred on Lord Asriel and what happened to him after he crossed between worlds, as a bridge to Season 3. Probably due to James McAvoy's packed schedule, filming this episode was arranged for March 2020 — and had to be shut down after only one day of shooting thanks to the COVID-19 pandemic and the UK's lock down. Since filming on the other episodes was already completed and Bad Wolf was still aiming to release the season later that year, the concept was set to the side so they could focus on post-production. Executive producer Jane Tranter did hope the episode could be revisited at a later stage, but writer Jack Thorne now believes that's unlikely. Thorne has mentioned that the plot of the episode would have shown us Asriel in Cittàgazze as it was, before the Spectres invaded and laid waste to it; and the showrunners managed to secretly get McAvoy in to film a scene with Asriel petitioning the rebel angels to join his cause, which obviously was meant to go at the end of the lost episode but was instead placed in the second season's finale.