‘All the Light We Cannot See’ Episode 3 Recap & Ending Explained: Does Marie Have the “Sea Of Flames”?

All the Light We Cannot See Episode 2 took us back to Werner’s difficult time at the National Political Institute of Education in Berlin. We learned about the terror that he had to face in there, but he didn’t let it shake his spirit thanks to his promise to his sister Jutta, who has always been his conscience. On the other hand, Marie managed to escape from the desperate man Rumpel, who wants the “Sea of Flames” all to himself so he can be “immortal.” Now, it seems Rumpel knows something about Marie’s father because, before trying to hurt Marie, he tried to speak to her about her father. Maybe they crossed paths, or it’s just because her father used to work at the museum. We see how Marie and her father traveled from Paris to St. Malo to find Etienne.


Spoilers Ahead

What happens in the episode?

Werner has taken the officer to Marie’s doorstep, and it seems like the end is near. The officer hands Werner a gun (smart move) to get Marie as soon as she comes out, but before things get gnarly, Etienne shows up on a bike. When the officer is looking at Etienne, who has a rifle in his hand, Werner shoots him in the head. Before the other soldier can do anything, Etienne kills him, too. Werner immediately puts the gun down and his hands up, so Etienne understands he’s on their side. Etienne calls out to Marie, finally giving away her name to Werner, too. He tells her to lock the doors. They hide the bodies somewhere nearby, as Etienne says, and get a move on. Before leaving the house, Etienne leaves another message for Marie, which she finds while locking the door.


Who Is Etienne Really?

In a flashback, Marie and Daniel arrive at St. Malo to meet Madame Manec and Etienne. Madame Manec is immediately in love with Marie and feeds her while Daniel looks for Etienne. He’s actually Daniel’s uncle, meaning he’s Marie’s great-uncle. It’s the same house that Marie is broadcasting from now, and Daniel makes it to the attic, where Etienne sits in front of his radio having war flashbacks. Etienne is known as a war hero, but ever since he’s come back, he hasn’t stepped out of the house because of his PTSD. Daniel tells him that he and Marie have fled and need their care. Madame Manec tells Marie in the meantime that her brother sits in front of his radio all day, but he also tells her one thing all the time: that the most important light is that which you cannot see. Marie is quite certain now that Etienne is the famous professor (we knew we heard Hugh Laurie’s voice way back in the first episode) she’s been listening to, and when he comes down to speak with her, it really is him.

Now, Werner has to explain to Etienne in the present day why he killed his own officer. He tells Etienne that it’s a long story, but it’s one that he must tell. Werner talks about the strict training in the institution and how he was too quick for his class when it came to radios, so he got shipped off to the Eastern Front, even though he was too young. Before telling him his long story, Werner mentions the professor to Etienne, telling him why Marie was of interest to Werner. Etienne sends Werner off to the basement to hide while he goes off to finish up more war work.


Rumpel tells the woman who helped him, the story of why he needs to find Marie so eagerly. He tells her how he went to the museum and tortured a friend of Daniel’s to get information out of him, which was when he found out about Marie. Rumpel thinks Marie’s blindness has to do with Daniel’s possession of the stone. He searched and searched, but he never found the stone. Now, the woman promises to tell Rumpel where Marie lives in return for her freedom.

Back in the flashback, Marie admits to Etienne that she has been listening to his voice. He’s been teaching her since way back when. Before the conversation gets deeper, though, Etienne tells Marie to head back down to her father to go look at the ocean. Marie asks him to come along, but of course, he refuses because he’s still very traumatized. Daniel, on the other hand, is determined to make a wooden map of St. Malo for Marie, just like the one he made of Paris. To everyone’s surprise, the Parisian man starts walking around all of St. Malo, counting his steps and making him look suspicious. Still, Daniel is unbothered and makes his little wooden houses. His craft project is interrupted when some soldiers show up to ask him what he’s doing. Daniel lies about his identity and even shares fake papers, much to Etienne’s utter surprise. After confirming Marie is blind by placing a knife in front of her eyes and somewhat believing Daniel’s story, they leave.


Etienne has been sending codes to London, so he can’t have any attention brought to his house like Daniel has because of the step counting. Daniel takes Marie to collect oysters and tells her stories of Etienne’s past. When they return home, she pushes Etienne’s buttons, asking him to step out of the house with them. She even manages to make him really upset, but to Daniel’s surprise, Etienne promises to step outside one day if it’s Marie who asks him to. He also asks her never to stop asking him to take the leap with her. They’re meant to have a meeting with the resistance of St. Malo at that moment, and Madame Manec arrives with two of her friends. Daniel tells her they’re going to have an important meeting, but he’s interrupted when Etienne introduces the women as the resistance.

Daniel tells the women that the Germans definitely have his name on paper because he shipped some rocks off to Geneva before they could have them. He proceeds to say that he has the “Sea of Flames” in the house with them, which puts them all in grave danger. Madame Manec tells Daniel that they cannot lose time and have to come up with a quick plan, but there’s no way she would make him and Marie leave the house as they’re family.


Where Has Daniel Hidden The Stone?

Later that night, Daniel opens up one of the houses on the wooden map, revealing the stone. He then puts it back in its place and heads to Marie’s room to watch her sleep because he worries about when they’ll meet again. The plan is to make it look like Daniel has illegally escaped to Spain and smuggled the stone in order to do so. This way, everyone will be off their scent permanently. Daniel tells Marie that they will meet again very soon if the plan works out. Marie is convinced the best thing to do is hand over the stone and be done with all the other nonsense, but Etienne reminds her that the stone is a property of France, and they can’t give away national treasure.

In the present day, it’s nighttime, and Rumpel makes his way to Etienne’s house. On the other hand, the rest of the members of Etienne’s new resistance team show up to interrogate Werner. They don’t care about where Werner was plucked from or what his name is. All they want to know is how many families he’s killed. They know that anyone with a radio was killed, and Werner led people to the radios, meaning he is very much associated with murderers. Werner has already guessed Etienne is the professor and calls him that, asking for the chance to explain. The other two people are done talking and bring out their guns at Werner. Etienne stops them, risking his own life, standing as a barricade between Werner and his people. He explains how Werner is good, but they have covered their ears. Etienne admits he’s the professor and tells Werner to run. At the end of the episode, Rumpel finds Marie’s home, and the resistance meeting with Werner gets hit by a bomb. Will Etienne die? What about Werner? Will he be able to reach Marie and keep her alive until the Americans arrive? With the Americans right at their doorstep, how much more must they face before freedom is theirs?


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Ruchika Bhat
Ruchika Bhat
Ruchika, or "Ru," is a fashion designer and stylist by day and a serial binge-watcher by night. She dabbles in writing when she has the chance and loves to entertain herself with reading, K-pop dancing, and the occasional hangout with friends.

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