The Earth in Netflix’s ‘Black Knight’ is distinctively different from the world we live in. The regions which once used to be lush and full of life have become desolate wastelands. The population of the region has also decreased catastrophically, with 1% of humanity surviving. Despite being on the brink of extinction, humanity has somehow found a way to discriminate against others. With the atmosphere being toxic, oxygen has become a prized commodity, now produced by processing an element known as oxyanium. If you are wondering about the setting and timeline of ‘Black Knight,’ we got you covered. SPOILERS AHEAD.
When Does Black Knight Take Place?
The Netflix series is based on the webtoon of the same name by Lee Yun-kyun. At the start of the series, the narrator explains the timeline of the series and what happened to the planet. Forty years ago, a comet collided with Earth. In the resulting cataclysm, most of the continents went under the sea. The story is supposed to be set in 2071 when humanity in the Korean Peninsula has dwindled to a mere 1%. The air has apparently become toxic and non-breathable, and the ground has turned into a desert.
There are plenty of TV shows where calamities like this are the results of human actions, but Black Knight is not one of them. However, there are aspects of the misery caused by humanity. In the aftermath of the comet, a private organization named Cheonmyeong Group became as powerful as the government by extracting oxygen from oxyanium and selling it. Although the man who established Cheonmyeong, Ryu Jae-jin, has grown repentant about his past actions, his son, Ryu Seok, is ruthless and cruel. He has also been diagnosed with one of the new diseases which have become prevalent after the comet and have only a limited time unless he finds a cure. Most of Ryu Seok’s reprehensible actions stem from this diagnosis.
Where Does Black Knight Take Place?
Black Knight takes place in the Korean Peninsula, which has turned into a desert after the comet. Seoul is in ruins. The remnants of humanity have been forced to undergo societal changes. The people are divided into three groups: General, Special, and Core. These groups live in their designated districts. The Core group is comprised of the elites of the society and even has an artificial sky over their district, where the air is artificially kept pristine clear. In contrast, a person can’t survive outside in the General District for more than 10 minutes.
There is also a fourth group of people. Labeled as refugees, they lead miserable life with little to no access to resources. They are often killed without much thought by Cheonmyeong agents. Many refugees have become hunters to steal and plunder resources from others. The eponymous Black Knights or Deliverymen are employees of Cheonmyeong tasked to deliver resources to the people. As they often have to deal with the hunters during the job runs, the deliverymen are exceptional fighters and drivers.
A government exists in this post-apocalyptic world, with the President serving as the head of state, but as indicated above, it shares power with the Cheonmyeong and has little say about the actions of the latter. In fact, toward the tail end of the first season, the defense minister executes a coup, knowing he has the backing of Ryu Seok.
Toward the end of the season, the coup is defeated, and Ryu Seok’s plans are thwarted. It turns out that Cheonmyeong was using mobile air-purifying machines to pollute the air. As the season ends, Earth starts to heal, the sky becomes clear, and the air becomes breathable.
Read More: What Happened to Earth in Black Knight, Explained