Foundation finale explained: how Demerzel got the Radiant

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Foundation Season 2 has finally come to its ending, with a lot of surprises. The season finale introduced many new elements that can be fully explained only in a possible Season 3. Demerzel and the Genetic Dynasty are still alive, the Foundation is getting stronger, and The Mule is coming, scared of Gaal Dornick. In one of the last scenes, we see Demerzel giving life to three new clones and using the Prime Radiant. How did Demerzel get the Prime Radiant, and what’s the meaning of that scene? Let’s explore it.

You can watch the official trailer for Foundation Season 2 here on Youtube.

Foundation Season 2 finale explained: how did Demerzel get the Prime Radiant?

Let’s focus on what happens back at the Imperial Palace and how the Season 2 finale of the Foundation has explained it. As we know, Brother Day is fighting his war in the Invictus and will die at the hands of his General Bel Riose. Everything was planned in advance by Hari Seldon, and the whole role of Hober Mallow served to push Day into the decision that would make everybody stand against him.

While all this happens, Demerzel is not there with Brother Day. She was triggered by a sensor informing her that someone entered the room where she had been held prisoner for thousands of years, so she needed to return to the palace immediately. There, she will find Rue and Brother Dusk, proving that the hologram of Cleon I explained to them the story of Demerzel and the Genetic Dynasty. As the Season 2 finale explained, Demerzel is programmed to take decisive actions to preserve the Empire, and this will imply killing Dusk and Rue. Before dying, Brother Dusk will leave a green mark on Demerzel’s neck, which will count as a message for Brother Dawn: she’s a traitor. Brother Dawn will escape with Queen Sareth, but that won’t change Demerzel’s plan to restore the Genetic Dynasty.

At the ending scene of Foundation Season 2, we see Demerzel activating three new clones, replacing all the three members of the Genetic Dynasty who recently disappeared (Day and Dusk are dead, whereas Dawn escaped with Sareth). It’s the first time Demerzel is forced to activate three clones simultaneously. It won’t be easy: she will be the only one with the mission of teaching them everything. From this point of view, the concern Dusk has before dying becomes true: Demerzel is the real character holding power at this moment, and she will guide the three clones from now on. Moreover, now she has “a new tool”: the Prime Radiant, which she just started learning.

How did Demerzel get the Prime Radiant in the Foundation Season 2 finale? The answer is in Episode 9 of Season 2, when Brother Day and Demerzel enter the Vault and meet Hari Seldon’s hologram. In that meeting, Hari Seldon seemed to be negotiating an agreement with Empire, offering the Prime Radiant to them. The Prime Radiant contains all psychohistory, and he offers to teach Demerzel how to read it. Interestingly, Hari Seldon seems to talk more to Demerzel than Brother Day. Seldon knows the future: he knows Day will die soon, whereas Demerzel is destined to be always there, protecting Empire. So, if there is someone worth sharing his knowledge with, that’s Demerzel.

Brother Day exits the Vault with the Prime Radiant in his hands, but before continuing his mission, Demerzel needs to return to Trantor. We no longer know where the Prime Radiant is at that moment, but we assume Demerzel has it now. And that’s how she still has it when she gives birth to three new clones.

What will Demerzel see in the Prime Radiant in the eventual Season 3 of Foundation? This is the big question that needs to be explained after watching the Foundation Season 2 finale. Hari Seldon said that all psychohistory is written in the Prime Radiant, but what prevents us from assuming that he handed over to Demerzel a version of the Prime Radiant that contains elements engineered on purpose to guide the Empire’s future actions? Did Hari Seldon give Demerzel the Prime Radiant as a weapon that will influence their future decisions? And above all: is another hologram of Hari Seldon inside the Prime Radiant, meaning that Seldon basically found a way to enter the Imperial Palace through this “gift”?

We have no final answers to all these questions right now, and neither can the books written by Asimov guide us in this. Surely, Foundation is now open to many possible continuations in an eventual Season 3. Will we have the chance to know more soon? Only time will tell.

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