5.21.19 - Completed the series. Now researching and reviewing notes. It is killing me to not read other theories about the show. Trying to only go on my own notes and research.
This page was created so I can gather my thoughts on the second season of The OA, a show on Netflix. There will be LOTS of spoilers as I ponder symbols and plot lines, so please watch the show before reading. I wrote my thoughts on the first season in this post. That post was created gathering information from a variety of resources. In the first episode of this season, the characters very clearly state that although a lot of the “gamers” were working together to solve the puzzle, the Puzzlemaker wants the players to work alone. It is a discussion between the maker and the solver, outside of “Big Blue,” where the gamers have gathered, “Question the Answers” is spray-painted on the wall. With great respect to Brit Marling, my gorgeous doppelgänger, I will try my best to piece together elements from the show on my own or by using personal resources. Almost nothing in this show is accidental, great thought and planning went into the details of most every scene. The show combines theories and symbols from science, religion, history and pop culture, mysticism, the Arts, all mixed into a captivating story. If this blog post helps you enjoy the show on a new level, my work is not in vain. If it is just for me, I am good with that too! It starts 7 Hours and 46 minutes ago, also with a plunge into water…
WATER/BRIDGES: The first season started on a bridge, viewed from inside a car, they see Prairie jump off into water. She is trying to transport back to Homer as the boy in the car says, “She is trying to get to the other side.” The second season begins in a similar way, except this time it is Karim’s dream in which he is rushing down the mountain on a skateboard and sees Praire standing in a red dress. Later, when he meets her, he asks if he has met her before and upon seeing her in a red dress, says he dreamt this connection. This foreshadows the dreamwork being done at Curi. • Karim lives in a house boat within view of the very orange Golden Gate Bridge. The bridge color was not supposed to stay this way, it was painted to protect it from corrosive elements. The Golden Gate Bridge used to be the top suicide location in the world. Bridges are 6 of the 10 of the top places to commit suicide according to this article. Drowning in water was HAP’s preferred method of creating a Near Death Experience in the first season. • While Karim is playing basketball, one player has a bridge on this t-shirt, there is also one with a diamond shape.
SEA CREATURES: in S2 Homer eats an octopus while recounting Prairie’s “delusions” to his Tinder date, almost choking, we can wonder if he is having a flashback to eating the orange sea anemone in S1. • There are several fish tanks, people in sailor and aquatic themed attire and waves projected on the wall at Syzygy. As well as tanks with orange elements throughout the show. • The OA with the Octopus is a stunning scene. While using Nina as a medium to communicate with the audience, he explains that he can see both Nina and the OA, and that she is an angel and an interdimensional traveler. He tells her that her time is limited in every dimension and that in the future she forgets herself and her true nature. He also says her “brother” in every dimension has been sent by “her” (Khatun S1? Khatun is a female title of nobility and counterpart to "khan" or "Khagan" prominently used in the Turkic Khaganate and in the subsequent Mongol Empire) to protect OA. Is this Karim in S2 and Elias (FBI) in S1 or Steve? After killing OA, she is able to emerge on an inflight plane and we see she is about to connect with Brit Marling, whom we believe OA will teleport into for S3, based on how S2 ends. The octopus says his name is Azreal, but that OA calls him “Old Night.” I believe this name is a reference to Milton’s, Paradise Lost. in this journal article by Walter Clyde Curry, page 38 (OA has 37 seconds to reach the moment to see her real face) begins the discussion about Milton’s Chaos and Old Night. Old Night is one of two deities ruling over “a wild Abyss represented as being the womb of Nature and perhaps her grave.” LIfe/Death. Less likely is that Marling was referring to a time period in Warhammer.
MICHELLE/BUCK: “I am strong, I am the hope.” We need to keep an eye on M/B as this character is an active driver in both dimensions. This transgendered person is Buck is S1 and sings, while the character is Michelle and plays the drums in S2’s dimension. When Rachel makes contact with him via the TV, Buck is wearing a tee with deer antlers, possibly referring to the definition, “the male of some horned animals, especially the fallow deer, roe deer, reindeer, and antelopes.” I like the secondary definition for ‘Buck,’ “oppose or resist (something that seems oppressive or inevitable).” Opposition is a repeating theme to the show. Michelle’s grandmother calls her “invisible,” which she is in S2, at least in that dimension.
TEXTING: Michelle’s final text to her grandmother contained the emojis 🐙 Octopus, 🍷 Wine Glass, 😢 Crying Face, 🙏 Folded Hands, 🔑 Key. She also shows that she has money in the text, but the current dollar value of Ethereum for that amount would be $3880.42, not $30 thousand +. • The tree tells OA that “Nina Azarova is the key.
ETHER/ETHEREUM/MINES/TUNNELS: Ether is the token of Ethereum. The Ether is “the clear sky; the upper regions of air beyond the clouds.” Ethereum is a Cryptocurrency who Greek uppercase Xi character (Ξ). The virtual “wallet” stores “keys” in a “brain wallet.” Like Bitcoin, Ether tokens must be “mined.” • Mines were a reoccurring theme/location in S1. The Medium, whose Engineer husband designed the Knob Hill House, is said to be friend to the wives of mining engineers. • Prairie tell Hap that angels are just coal dust pressed into diamonds. • Basketball player wearing a shirt with a diamond on it. Karim walks by a sign that says 5160 Diamond Heights. • The dreamers at Curi see a tunnel the size of a coffin.
FLOWERS/GARDENS: Continuing from S1, We also see where Michelle was holed up in the Knob Hill house, her phone hidden behind a poster of a rose. Karim finds Dr. Rose’s address by going to the Calendula County Bookstore, located at 7213 Brier Drive, Grass Valley (not real). Calendulas, commonly known as Marigolds, the genus name Calendula is a modern Latin diminutive of calendae, meaning "little calendar", "little clock" or possibly "little weather-glass". Used in many religious ceremonies. Karim later talks with Dr. Rose, who explains what is happening at Curi with the Dreams. • Near Death Experiences (NDE) are compared to “A garden of forking paths.” • HAP’S office is decorated in Islamic rugs and pillows showing stylized florals. There is a lot of symbolism in Islamic Gardens. • Hap tells OA that the house opens an “actual garden of forking paths, a seed waiting to be fertilized.” • In Hap’s lab, Steve, Jessy and the house boy all have red roses growing from their brain seed, Scott has white roses. In rose symbolism, red is the lover's rose, signifies enduring passion; white, humility and innocence. That symbolism does not seem to be what Marling was going for, perhaps Scott’s roses are white because he is a multidimensional traveler? In the Tarot the rose is considered a symbol of balance. It expresses promise, new beginnings, and hope. Its thorns represent defense, physicality, loss, thoughtlessness. In the major arcana the rose appears on the Magician, Strength, Death and Fool cards. In ancient Greece, the rose was closely associated with the goddess Aphrodite. Book Eleven of the ancient Roman novel The Golden Ass by Apuleius contains a scene in which the goddess Isis, who is identified with Venus, instructs the main character, Lucius, who has been transformed into a donkey, to eat rose petals from a crown of roses worn by a priest as part of a religious procession in order to regain his humanity. Will Hap regain his humanity now that he has eaten rose petals?
PIERRE RUSHKIN/CURI: Pierre is Nina’s boyfriend, “Angel” investor and creator of Q Symphony. He created the game to lure puzzle solvers to the Knob Hill House to solve it’s mystery. I believe that the names Pierre and Curi come from Pierre Curie who was a French physicist, a pioneer in crystallography, magnetism, piezoelectricity and radioactivity. “It would be a beautiful thing, a thing I dare not hope, if we could spend our life near each other, hypnotized by our dreams: your patriotic dream, our humanitarian dream, and our scientific dream.” Pierre Curie to Maria Skłodowska-Curie, his wife. In the late nineteenth century, Pierre Curie was investigating the mysteries of ordinary magnetism when he became aware of the spiritualist experiments of other European scientists. "I must admit that those spiritual phenomena intensely interest me. I think in them are questions that deal with physics." He saw the séances as scientific experiments, tried to monitor different parameters, and took detailed notes of every observation. Despite studying spiritualism, Curie was an atheist. • Rushkin is probably inspired by John Ruskin who was the leading English art critic of the Victorian era, as well as an art patron, draughtsman, watercolourist, a prominent social thinker and philanthropist. In all of his writing, he emphasised the connections between nature, art and society. In Modern Painters, John Ruskin proclaims what he calls ‘the Law of Help’. He has been talking about composition in painting – about the way the individual parts of a picture contribute to the whole – and he then goes on to affirm such collaboration as the ruling principle of nature itself:
[I]n a plant, the taking away of any one part ... injure[s] the rest. Hurt or remove any portion of the sap, bark, or pith, the rest is injured. If any part enters into a state in which it no more assists the rest, and has thus become “helpless”, we call it “dead”.
The power which causes the several portions of the plant to help each other, we call life. Much more is this so in an animal.
DREAMS: Dr. Roberts/Homer dreams of carrying a bunch of sticks to market and has a surreal encounter in a cabin. One interpretation of this dream imagery is “A stick can be an instrument of punishment and a sign of power. Perhaps you are being punished for something you've done or something you didn't do but people have wrongly accused you. Or maybe you are punishing someone else after they have wronged you in some way.” Perhaps this is Homer’s subconscious communicating to him. He is carrying a burden, he has forgotten or suppressed the part of himself that knows Prairie. He knows in the dream that he is looking for a girl. He wakes up as he licks the back of a bodiless torso. This could be looked at as sexual, but could also be a way of expressing love such as how animals lick to express love. He is told that he needs all his senses. • The participants at Curi dream clues to the entrance into the house, as well as Karim’s face. • Karim’s dream (mentioned in Water/Bridges). • “They Dreamed of Blood Rivers” a book by Nina Azarova, refers to the explanation in the show of the power of group minds in which the people of Germany dreamt of rivers running red with blood, men in black shirts and paired snakes being a predictors of the Nazis.
SYZYGY: This is the crazy club Nina performs in and is defined as a conjunction or opposition, especially of the moon with the sun. or a pair of connected or corresponding things.
KNOB HILL HOUSE/ANGI’S HOUSE: They very clearly state the address of the house is 9783 Sutter Street, San Francisco. This is not the real address of the house. The crazy thing is if you google it, there is a triangular patch of space with nothing on it and it points towards the Oakland Bay Bridge, which leads to Treasure Island! • Angi’s house has the address of 10629 West Payne Court and they are located in Michigan, I do not think they say specifically which town. Need to rewatch S1. There are no “West” Payne Courts, but there is an address in Wolverine Lake, MI. The mascot for the high school was a wolf, also represented on Prairie’s hoodie in S1.
ORANGE/RED: Our first sighting of The OA is with her wearing a red dress. • The first season was all about the purples and violets, from the clothes to the general hue. This season is a warmer orange/red coloring with pops of the complimenting or opposing color, green. Karim and Prairie/Nina discuss the house in “Red’s Java House” located near the orange Golden Gate Bridge. • Too many occurrences to mention!
THE RED JACKET: I asked a friend who reads Mandarin and we believe based on her translation that this jacket was made specifically for the show. The top part says “the sun rises and the sun sets” The middle part, the biggest letterings: the first two characters mean Birth and the last one means Death. On the right side, it says “everything has a beginning and an end. “. On the left “Every day begins and ends.” We think this was made for the show because it is considered bad luck to put “death” or the number 4 on anything so it would be highly unlikely that this jacket would be produced for the Chinese market. The sun shape echos the Rose Glass window, plus it continues with the themes of life/ death of the show and ties into the red/orange theme.
NINA’S APARTMENT: Over the fireplace are four framed works of art. They read: Apollodoro (Painter?) Catullus (poet) who wrote chiefly in the neoteric style of poetry, which is about personal life rather than classical heroes. He also wrote erotic poems and poems about the death of loved ones. Virgilious Roman poet. Usually called Virgil or Vergil. Virgil is traditionally ranked as one of Rome's greatest poets. His Aeneid has been considered the national epic of ancient Rome since the time of its composition. Modeled after Homer's Iliad and Odyssey. Virgil appears as Dante's guide through Hell and Purgatory in Dante’s Divine Comedy. I can not tell what the fourth framed work says. • There is a painting in her apartment which appears to have a spirit hovering over a seated women in a pink dress. Perhaps just a nod to her being a medium or something more? • The projection of the tree foreshadows Prairie/Nina in the tree outside Knob Hill.
BIRDS: “Crows defend their nest in numbers, when you learn to fly like them they stop attacking.” A murder of crows, foreshadows Dr. Rose’s murder. • There are two orange birds in NIna’s apartment.
VERTICAL LINES/NUMBER 11: There is something with the number 11 or two vertical lines. Nina writes her name starting by drawing two vertical lines and them connecting them with a diagonal. • She is listed as patient 11 in the hospital and the first code Karim enters correctly is BA411. • The “A” in the OA logo looks like two angles lines. • Rachel draws “I I” when asked to draw what is happening in HAP’s office. • The caesura is represented either as a dot or double vertical or oblique bars, like an eleven (See Under Bed Drawings).
UNDER THE BED DRAWINGS: These are the underside of Michelle’s bed at the house on the hill. This is where Karim finds the symbol for Curi, but what else is here? Need to explore! • 1.1 The lower left corner contains a classical or Cretan labyrinth. A labyrinth is an ancient symbol that relates to wholeness. It combines the imagery of the circle and the spiral into a meandering but purposeful path. The Labyrinth represents a journey to our own center and back again out into the world. • 4 A series of boxes containing a Fibonacci Sequence. The Rule is xn = xn-1 + xn-2 . FIbonacci Day is 11-23. He is known for discovering this sequence and spreading the Hindu-Arabic Numerals (1,2,3,4,5,etc.) The sequence of numbers creates a spiral like those found in nature such as the seeds of a sunflower or the spiral of a shell, this is called the Golden Ratio, its symbol is the Greek letter Phi - uppercase Φ, lowercase φ or ϕ. • 6 The word on the left appears to be the Russian word пивная is associated with beer, perhaps brewery, brasserie or pub. • 9 The spirits or angels EXARP (air), HCOMA (water), NANTA (earth) and BITOM (fire) rule the Elemental tables. • 9 The Bach and musical notes are driving me nuts. I have read about the Bach Motif, which is a musical cryptogram. I can not quite figure out how to translate the letters in the honeycomb, but I feel like there is something there. One guess as to how it fits in has to do with the dot under the ‘a’ in Bach. in music, a caesura is a break in a verse where one phrase ends and the following phrase begins. This could refer to how Prairie’s consciousness broke from her body and entered Nina’s. The caesura is represented either as a dot or double vertical or oblique bars, like an eleven. This is also widely used in Greek poetry and Wiki uses a verse from Homer as an example. μῆνιν ἄειδε θεὰ || Πηληϊάδεω Ἀχιλῆος ("Sing, o goddess || the rage of Achilles, the son of Peleus.").
HEXAGONS: The honeycomb in 9 and the symbol in 4/5 are hexagons. The first season focused on the pentagons/penagrams. • Floor tiles in the Knob Hill house as well as this above clip in the Rachel video. • Also drawn on the cardboard under the bed.
PARABLE OF THE SOWER: A book featuring a fifteen-year-old protagonist named Lauren Oya Olamina, and is set in a dystopian California in the 2020s. Lauren, who suffers from a syndrome causing her to literally feel any physical pain she witnesses, decides to escape the corruption and corporatization of her community. She forms a new belief system, Earthseed, in order to prepare for the future of the human race on another planet. • This title is also a biblical story “Listen! Behold, a sower went out to sow. And as he sowed, some seed fell along the path, and the birds came and devoured it. Other seed fell on rocky ground, where it did not have much soil, and immediately it sprang up, since it had no depth of soil. And when the sun rose, it was scorched, and since it had no root, it withered away. Other seed fell among thorns, and the thorns grew up and choked it, and it yielded no grain. And other seeds fell into good soil and produced grain, growing up and increasing and yielding thirtyfold and sixtyfold and a hundredfold.” And he said, “He who has ears to hear, let him hear.”
NANCY AND ABLE: Nina is wearing two bands of stones while taking with Nancy, one red and one green. Nancy has window panes, later described as “pagan vagina windows” behind her as well as a stature playing the harp on the mantel. She helps Nina realize why she and Nina are so different in these different dimensions. The drive on the computer desktop says “10.9” Symbolizing before 11?
DEATH: Yassi, Homer’s Tinder date, is redesigning death at her job, making people deal with their mortality instead of running from it.
HOMER: Pyramus and Thisbe
THE SYMBOL X:
Still have lots to add. Thanks for reading and I hope you enjoy the show more with this added insight!