The Real-Life Event That Inspired “1899,” A Thriller From “Dark” Creators

The period fiction argues against a real-world status quo.

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10 Shows Like 1899 To Watch Next
Image: Netflix

The year is 1899. It’s the peak of the industrial era in Europe as speculators await the advancements that the 20th century heralds. In this setting, an ambitious transatlantic vessel sets sail, leaving British shores for greener pastures in the New World. Aboard, a group of immigrants — motivated by their own goals — look forward to a new life in New York City. However, the journey doesn’t go to plan when they encounter Prometheus, a ghost ship that has been off the radar for months.

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This riveting plot isn’t an excerpt from a best-selling thriller novel but the premise of Netflix’s latest series, “1899.” It’s a production from the same German team that brought to us the popular sci-fi thriller, “Dark.”

Although the fantastical aura of 1899’s trailer gives away its basis in fiction, not many know that certain story elements have also been inspired by real-life events. For those who haven’t seen the trailer yet, check it out below.

If the trailer has already intrigued you enough, you may check out our guide on how to watch 1899 for free.

Is “1899” inspired by real life?

As revealed by 1899’s co-creator Jantje Friese, the essence of 1899’s story lies in European nationalism and hence presents an argument against Brexit. Friese said, “We felt that with the past years of Europe being on the decline, we wanted to give a counterpoint to Brexit, and to nationalism rising in different countries, to go back to that idea of Europe and Europeans working and creating together.”

While Brexit was a majority-backed decision, the motion barely made it through with just under 52% votes. In other words, a significant British population was against their country leaving the European Union. With cracks emerging among the European nations today, this series which brings together European immigrants from different backgrounds promotes the idea of continental unity.

Nonetheless, you can’t deny that the appeal of the supernatural period series is inescapable. And, the same can be said for these interesting facts about “1899.” But, do you think it’ll get the same response as Dark? Tell us in the comments below.

Priye Rai

Priye Rai

Priye is a tech writer at Fossbytes, who writes about gaming and anything remotely related to tech, including smartphones, apps, OTT, etc. He prefers to be called a "video game journalist" and grimaces when he doesn't get to be "Player 1." If you want to talk about games or send any feedback, drop him a mail at [email protected]
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