The His Dark Materials audience enjoyed a lovely segment of “intertextuality” when Lyra (Dafne Keen) and Will (Amir Wilson) went to see a movie to avoid detection by evil forces and watched Paddington, the story of the bear who crosses over from the jungles of Peru to the streets of London.
Not only that, but the villain in Paddington is none other than Australian star Nicole Kidman who, of course, played Mrs Coulter in the 2007 film The Golden Compass, based on Phillip Pulman’s first novel in the His Dark Materials series.
An intelligent, witty addition to the hit fantasy drama by the writer, Jack Thorne.
Nice intertextuality in #HisDarkMaterials as Lyra and Will watch Paddington at the cinema where the villain is played by Nicole Kidman, Mrs Coulter in The Golden Compass film
— Darryl Webber (@HoracePecksniff) November 22, 2020
Fans applauded the “genius” development. “Absolute genius moment in #HisDarkMaterials where Will and Lyra go to the cinema and watch Paddington cross into another world – whole series such a tonic”.
Perhaps Paddington could have a role in season three? “HDM really raising questions tonight, namely, can I have Paddington as my daemon please? #HisDarkMaterials”.
The scene maximised viewer satisfaction with episode three.
Pan peeking out so he can watch Paddington too was possibly the cutest thing I have ever seen with my own two eyes #HisDarkMaterials
— StaceyLikesBooks (@ReadingAutistic) November 22, 2020
It was Lyra’s first experience in a cinema, clearly. She tried the popcorn, screwed up her nose and described it as tasting like wood shavings, but still continued to eat it.
The fact that Lyra’s daemon Pan wanted to watch the family adventure only added to viewers’ enjoyment.
Best bits of #HisDarkMaterials this week were Lyra’s love-hate with popcorn and a CGI Pan captivated by a CGI Paddington
— Scott Matthewman (@scottm) November 22, 2020
For which character would Paddington be the daemon though?
But who would Paddington be a Daemon for? #HisDarkMaterials
— ???????? The Fes-Steve Season ???????? (@FistOfFiori) November 22, 2020
Mr Brown? “Did Lyra watch Paddington and think Paddington was Mr. Brown’s daemon?”
We imagine Paddington won’t be making a permanent appearance in His Dark Materials but judging by the reaction it would be well received.
Fan enjoyment was through the roof. “Adding a scene in which the main characters are inspired by a scene in the 2014 Paddington Bear film into an adaptation of a 1997 book is just something else”.
The audience also reacted well to the meeting between Lee Scoresby and Mrs Coulter, another addition to the narrative by the screenwriter.
What will they do next?
His Dark Materials episode four screens on Sunday 29th December on BBC One.