Netflix’s sci-fi psychological mystery series, ‘1899’ follows the story of a group of passengers who find themselves in the middle of the ocean on a ship that has lost sight of its destination. Originally, it was supposed to take them to New York, but the sudden appearance of Prometheus, the ship that went missing four months ago, changes the course of their journey. By the end of it, things become too chaotic to be contained by anyone, and the fates of all passengers hang in the balance. Maura Franklin tries to uncover the mystery behind both ships. She believes that it might have something to do with her brother, Ciaran. Who is he and how is he responsible for the events on the ship? Let’s find out. SPOILERS AHEAD!
Is Maura’s Brother Ciaran the Creator?
While Maura’s brother never really appears on the show, his importance is established in the first scene itself. Maura has a memory of being held captive and tortured in her father’s mental hospital. She says that her brother found out what Henry was doing with all the ships. She suspects that to keep his work a secret, Henry did something to Ciaran, which is why he has been missing for four months, the same time as the Prometheus.
It is the mystery of Ciaran’s disappearance that acts as a catalyst in Maura’s arc. He is the reason she boarded Kerberos. But for all her concern, she reveals that they had never been on good terms. Henry always preferred her over Ciaran, and this sibling rivalry always prevented them from enjoying a close relationship. In fact, Ciaran was so irked by the favoritism of his father that he nicknamed his sister Henry (short for her middle name, Henriette). He believed that she was slowly turning into their father.
The reason behind Henry’s preference for his daughter is explained in the final episode when he talks about avoiders and seekers. Ciaran was an avoider, who preferred to stay in pure bliss rather than opening the doors that might lead him down god knows what path. Maura, on the other hand, was born a seeker, which is what eventually lands her on Kerberos. Henry, too, was a seeker, driven by his desire to study every aspect of the human mind. The father and daughter had this in common, which is what tied them together.
It isn’t difficult to assume that Ciaran would have felt like an outcast in his own family. After his mother’s death, Henry devoted himself to his studies. He never really cared about his children anyway. The death of his wife drives him further away from them, but due to their shared interests, he and Maura form a bond that Ciaran is not a part of. He must have felt like he had been cast away by his family, which is why perhaps, he finally decided to give up his role as the avoider in the family. If he needed to capture the attention of his father and sister, then he needed to become a seeker and not only play but beat them at their own game.
In the final episode of ‘1899’, it is revealed that Maura created the simulation to deal with the pain of her son’s impending death. The nature of her work must have attracted her father’s attention who used it for his experiments but got caught up in it instead. Now, Ciaran is the only one outside the simulation. So, instead of bringing Henry and Maura back to reality, he decided to let them be there and took control of the entire project. He added his own layers of simulation over the ones that his father and sister had already created. Now, he has them trapped in a world of their own making. However, it is a little difficult to believe that he will stop there and restrain himself to the role of a spectator.
In the final scene, when Maura wakes up on a spaceship, we see that several other passengers are in the pods, trapped in something like a cryosleep. Maura leaves her pod when she wakes up, but there is another empty pod there, and she doesn’t know who was in it. It is someone who has woken up from the 1899 simulation or someone who never entered the simulation in the first place. It could be Daniel, who promised Maura that he’ll be there when she wakes up, but there is also a possibility that it could be her brother, who has decided to participate in the simulation instead of just being a bystander. In any case, it is the world that he made, and it is he who controls it. So, even though Maura started the project, it looks like Ciaran is the one running things now and has taken over the mantle of the Creator.