‘Foundation’ on Apple TV+ follows the centuries-long struggle between the followers of mathematician Hari Seldon and the dynastic clone empire of the galaxy. Episode 4 continues the saga as the first parts of Seldon’s dire predictions about the future of civilization begin to come true.
Disturbances in the outer reaches and a religious uprising on one of the galaxy’s most important planets force the Emperor to take notice, and he is once again reminded of the devastating prophecy that his predecessor brushed aside as heresy. The episode closes on an ominous note, saying that the beginning of the end has begun. Let’s take a closer look at the pivotal ‘Foundation’ episode 4 and make sure we’ve examined all its moving pieces. SPOILERS AHEAD.
Foundation Episode 4 Recap
The episode opens with the death of a religious leader of an important planet, which the Galactic Emperor on Trantor is then informed about. The messenger conveys that there is a possibility that the new leader who takes power might rebel against the empire, causing an outburst from the three clone kings. It is hastily decided that Brother Dusk will pay a visit to the planet to oversee the transition to a sympathetic religious leader.
Brother Day, meanwhile, worries about the possibility of Hari Seldon’s prophecy coming true. The fact that the latter accurately predicted a major religious uprising makes the Emperor wonder whether the other catastrophic events that the mathematician augered will also come to pass.
Meanwhile, on Terminus, Salvor is able to outsmart Phara, the leader of the tribe that captured her at the end of episode 3. It is eventually revealed that the captured leader is the Grand Huntress of Anacreon, one of the planet’s leaders. Despite repeated interrogation, the Anacreon maintains that she and her people are “scrappers” looking for abandoned technology. However, Salvor and the Foundation team soon discover that the rest of Phara’s team has set up heavy equipment on the boundary of the Foundation settlement.
Foundation Episode 4 Ending: Where is Gaal? Is She Alive?
Brother Dusk’s departure to the religious planet is interrupted by his younger clone, Brother Day, who proposes that he go instead. He blames the older clone for his shortsighted actions during the time of his reign and says that he will not repeat the mistakes that Brother Dusk committed. As Brother Day sets off on his interplanetary journey, Brother Dusk summons one of his commanders and asks him to investigate the disturbance on Terminus. We then see the Anacreons on Terminus finish setting up a large weapon on the planet’s surface, and the episode closes with a glimpse of Gaal in a casket, floating towards a spaceship.
The final moments of episode 4 show us that Gaal might still be alive. Considering it has been over 30 years since Hari Seldon was murdered and Raych forced her into a casket which he shot into space, it is surprising to see her still alive. Most likely, Gaal has been in hibernation and will awaken once she is on the ship. However, she has been unconscious the whole time and waking up after so many years will likely have a traumatic effect on her.
The question of Gaal’s location is more complicated since she is seen floating in space. Considering she was ejected much before the team arrived on Terminus and has been floating for over 30 years, she is very far from Trantor or Terminus. Her immediate destination seems to be a mysterious ship. Since Raych ejected Gaal all those years ago, the ship may be under his control. Additionally, there is the possibility that Hari Seldon foresaw all of this happening and organized a ship that would pick up Gaal many years after his death. It is also worth noting that the murder weapon that Raych used to kill Hari Seldon is in the casket with Gaal.
What Do the Anacreons Want?
The Anacreons claim to be “scrappers” who are technologically bankrupt and looking to harness abandoned spaceships. Their leader, Phara, informs Salvor that they require a navigation module from the Foundation’s old ship, which is lying unused. However, when it is discovered that Phara is the iconic Grand Huntress and leader of her planet, Salvor realizes that the Anacreons have a bigger plan afoot.
The massive artillery they have set up on the periphery of the Foundation settlement also shows that the Anacreons have come to Terminus with a specific, seemingly ambitious plan. Though their plan remains opaque, the motives of the Anacreons are clear. Having suffered a devastating attack at the hands of Emperor Dusk — which left half their population dead — the Anacreons are on the hunt for revenge.
The Foundation and Terminus are the closest parts of the Galactic Empire to their destroyed home planet, which is likely why the Anacreons have attacked it. Since the Foundation is an unarmed scientific outpost, the gun that the Anacreons have set up is likely in preparation for an impending rebuttal from the Emperor. This begins to look even more likely by the end of the episode when Brother Dusk sends one of his commanders to check on the reported disturbance on Terminus.
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