- If you gaze long into an abyss, the abyss also gazes into you. (Fredrich Nietzsche)
On June 21, 1921, two men are excavating the Winden Caves. The older one, who has a tattoo of the Emerald Tablet, is chiselling at a stone. He remarks that it is strange that something could be a beginning as well as an ending. The younger man responds "Sic Mundus Creatus Est: and thus the world was created." The first man redoubles his efforts.
Afterwards, they exit the cave. The younger man asks if the older man still believes in "the prophecy." He is noncommittal. The younger man reminds him "Adam" has told them everything must happen as it always has. In 6 days, hell on earth will end, it will be paradise. He perceives, however, that the older man has lost his faith. The older man asks if this was why Adam sent him; he has been expecting it but finds it interesting that he was the one Adam sent. He tells him to ask why Adam took him in and chose to call him "Noah". "Young Noah" takes a pickaxe and attacks the older man multiple times, killing him.
The older Noah opens his notebook and comes to a circled entry: "June 27, 2020: Beginning of the Last Cycle".
Jonas and Martha Nielsen are making love. He tells her, "You and I are perfect for each other. Never believe anything else." Jonas then awakens with a start in his bedroom: it was a dream. He is fully clothed, his hair is long and dishevelled. He pulls his father's suicide note out of his pocket. He goes downstairs. The house is empty and dilapidated. A calendar is on the wall from June 2020 and the date June 27 is circled. He removes a family photo from the wall and leaves the house, putting on a face mask. He walks through the abandoned wasteland that is post-apocalyptic Winden.
He goes down into the bunker. Photos of the people of Winden are on the wall, connected by strings. He takes a cassette tape recorded by Claudia. She says she was one of the few survivors of the apocalypse of June 27, 2020, and hopes that if the God Particle can be stabilized, it might provide a way back to the past to save them. He picks up the medal of St. Christopher and looks at a picture of Martha.
He walks through the desolate landscape and comes to a wall marked "Caution, Restricted area." He continues walking and enters a makeshift graveyard, near the church, where the graves of Aleksander Tiedemann, Torben Wöller and Martha lie, all having died June 27 2020. He comes to his father's grave and places the family photo on it.
On June 21, Hannah Kahnwald is listening to the radio, which announces that more than 6 months after the disappearance of 4 teenagers (Mikkel, Erik, Yasin and Jonas), a senior citizen (Helge) and a police officer (Ulrich), there are still no clues as to their whereabouts. A federal police task force will be assisting the investigation, to be headed by Clausen. She crosses June 21 off on the calendar: The first anniversary of her husbands death.
At the Tiedemann household, Regina, pale and having lost hair as a result of her cancer treatment is visited by her doctor. He tells her he is worried about her lab results and suggests she be admitted to the hospital, but she insists on staying at home. The doctor agrees to wait until additional test results come in, but warns that she may need to resume chemotherapy. Bartosz looks on, as he receives a text message from Martha, who wants to see him at the bridge.
Clausen tells everyone he and Charlotte Doppler will be re-investigating everything. Jürgen Obendorf rises and protests that is not enough. His son has been missing for more than 6 months. Clausen responds that a new person can view the case from different angles.
At the lake, Magnus asks Franziska if her mother ever talks about the missing persons. "Not to us." They kiss. She is interrupted by a text message and tells him she has to go to take care of Elisabeth, who has been staying with a friend. However, she goes to the railroad tracks and places an envelope in a box she has buried, which Magnus witnesses.
Later, Benni, the transgender prostitute, takes the box, removes the envelope that Franziska left and replaces it with another envelope, as Magnus watches. He follows Benni to her trailer. He goes inside. Benni solicits him. Shocked, he leaves hurriedly.
Katharina, meanwhile, goes to the cave.
Martha rides her bike to the bridge where Bartosz is waiting. He tells her he has tried calling her. She tells him there's a lot going on, she has wanted to talk for a while. Bartosz realizes they are done. He tells her it is because of Jonas. She says that has nothing to do with it, he has really changed, she has no idea what is going on with him. He tells her his mother is dying and there are things he can't tell her. She responds that she has to deal with a missing brother and father and a mother who barely acknowledges her. She tells him it's better this way and leaves. Bartosz then receives a text message from an unknown sender: "this evening." Later he meets with Noah at the caves, who asks him if he is prepared. He nods.
At the power plant, Aleksander gives a speech for the upcoming decommissioning of the power plant, thanking the employees for their loyalty. He then goes underground in a protective suit and is told everything is ready for transport. Any radiation will be traced back to the previous use of the pools. Later, concrete is poured over the barrels of nuclear waste.
At home alone, Hannah pulls out the box with Aleksander's gun and passport. She takes the gun and aims it at her chin. Just then she hears the door opening with a key. The Stranger enters. She asks him how he has a key. He tells her it's his key. He shows her the scar he has from falling off the bike she and his father gave him for his eighth birthday. He tells her they saw each other 33 years ago (episode Sic Mundus Creatus Est). He tells her he is Jonas, even though he is much older. They tearfully embrace. He explains that he exists infinitely. She asks where "her" Jonas is, and he replies that he is stuck in the future, because he had attempted to destroy the time portal, but only succeeded in closing it. He tells her he has come to put an end to everything.
Noah announces that there are no coincidences: every path in life is predetermined and happens when it is supposed to. He tells his younger self that he has taken his first step, and Adam will be proud. The young Noah wants to know how to tell good from evil. The older Noah tells him to listen only to himself.
Jonas walks through the forest and comes to a group standing in front of gallows, as a man is hung. A female soldier signs to another female soldier that entering the dead zone is forbidden, anyone who does so will be put to death. She tells everyone that they are the future, "Sic Mundus Creatus Est." They tell Jonas the passage will open and lead them to paradise. "Those without faith are already dead." He tells them all his family and friends have died. The deaf female head soldier is Elisabeth Doppler.
Elisabeth and Peter go to Tannhaus' shop. She asks about her grandparents, who died when her mother was still young, She finds a framed picture of the late H.G. Tannhaus with a young Charlotte, who raised her. In a book she finds an old photograph. She recognizes a man in it who gave her the watch—Noah. Peter texts this to Charlotte. Charlotte goes to meet Peter at the bunker. He shows her the photograph with Noah, which has January 8, 1921 and "Sic Mundus Creatus Est" written on the back. She adds it to the other photos on the wall of the bunker.
Clausen asks Charlotte whether she thinks Ulrich might have been involved, having called her just before he disappeared.
Adam speaks about the futility of existence. He asks if Noah showed (the naive) Bartosz, to which Noah nods. He tells him the apocalypse must happen, just as one must burn a dead forest so new trees may grow. He tells Noah he must find the "missing pages."
Magnus finds Martha looking through the materials in Mikkel's room; she shows him photos and tells him she thinks Katharina is in the caves.
Bartosz is seen approaching the cave entrance with a flashlight and seems to be waiting for someone. Noah appears out of the cave darkness and asks if he is prepared. Bartoszs nods and they go into the cave together. Noah is seen carrying what appears to be a leather bag.
Torben emerges from Benni's trailer, checking that nobody has seen him. He thanks her for the coffee and gives her an envelope. He tells her to call mother and they hug. She hands him keys which open a truck opposite, which he drives away.
Jonas walks through the derelict power plant. With his orb light and Geiger counter, he follows its signal as it intensifies and sees the God Particle.
- The title of this episode is similar to the title of the last episode of season 1- Alpha and Omega: The Beginning and the End
- The older man in the opening scene is credited only as "Man in Cave."
- He tells the other to ask why Adam called him Noah. In the Biblical Book of Genesis, Adam was the first creation of God, whereas Noah was the man chosen to survive the deluge when the rest of humanity was destroyed, hinting at a role for Noah to play after the apocalypse.
- Both Jonases sleep in their bedroom- the younger in 2054, the older in 2020.
- Hannah has lost her husband, son and lover
- The deaf female head soldier in 2052 is Elisabeth Doppler.
- The book in which Elisabeth finds the photo of Noah with Agnes Nielsen is The Kybalion, a book claiming to provide the complete teachings of Hermes Trismegistus, published originally in 1908 (the edition showed in the episode is from 1940). Like the Emerald Tablet, it is a core text of Hermeticism.
- The radioactive barrels are buried in concrete in 2020 and discovered by Jonas in 2052.
- Max Schimmelpfennig as young Noah
- Roman Knizka as "Man in Cave" (1921)
- Mark Waschke as the older Noah
- Lisa Vicari as Martha Nielsen
- Louis Hofmann as the teenage Jonas Kahnwald
- Maja Schöne as Hannah Kahnwald
- Paul Lux as Bartosz Tiedemann
- Peter Benedict as Aleksander Tiedemann
- Deborah Kaufmann as Regina Tiedemann
- Karoline Eichorn as Charlotte Doppler
- Sylvester Groth as Inspector Clausen
- Gina Alice Stiebitz as Franziska Doppler
- Moritz Jahn as Magnus Nielsen
- Nele Trebs as teenage Katharina Nielsen
- Andreas Pietschmann as the adult Jonas Kahnwald (The Stranger)
- Lisa Kreuzer as Claudia Tiedemann
- Lea van Acken as "Girl from the Future"
- Sandra Borgmann as the adult Elisabeth Doppler (2053)
- Carlotta von Falkenhayn as the childhood Elisabeth Doppler (2020)
- Stephan Kampwirth as Peter Doppler
- Dietrich Hollinderbäumer as Adam
- Carina Wiese as "Unknown Woman 1921"
- Leopold Hornung as Torben Wöller
- Nieke Schymura as Justyna Jankowski
- Tom Jahn as Jürgen Obendorf
- Anton Rubtsov as Benni
- Andreas Schröders as "Power Plant Worker #1"
- Frédéric Vonhof as "future scientist"
- Jördis Triebel as adult Katharina Nielsen
- Will Beinbrink as the voice of the Stranger
- Christian Kuchenbuch as Regina's doctor
- Tamar Pelzig as the voice of Franziska and Doris
- Frederik Klaus as "Police Officer" (uncredited)
- → See 41 images from Beginnings and Endings at Images from Beginnings and Endings.