How to watch His Dark Materials season 2 online: HBO release date, trailer and more

How to watch His Dark Materials season 2
(Image credit: HBO)
His Dark Materials season 2 release date, cast

Release date: Monday, November 16 (9 p.m.)
Release schedule: Mondays on HBO
Cast: Dafne Keen, Ruth Wilson, Amir Wilson, Anne-Marie Duff, Clarke Peters, Lin-Manuel Miranda
Creator: Jack Thorne
Episodes: 7 (hourlong)
Rotten Tomatoes: 86%

It's time to watch His Dark Materials season 2 on HBO and HBO Max, as the inner daemons are out with the return of the popular fantasy (which already premiered in the UK). This run of episodes follows the continuing adventures of Lyra (Dafne Keen) and Will Parry (Amir Wilson), who stepped through a portal to another multiverse world. 

His Dark Materials is based on Phillip Pullman's bestselling novels. The show is set in a multi-world alternate universe where humans have animal companions called dæmons, which are manifestations of the human soul.

Season 1 centered on orphan Lyra's journey to find her kidnapped best friend Roger and other missing children. Along the way, she learns of a mysterious substance called Dust. 

Season 2, based largely on the second book Subtle Knife, takes Lyra to the city of Cittagazze, where she crosses paths with Will, a child from our world. Lyra remains in danger from the Magisterium, as the malevolent Mrs. Coulter (Ruth Wilson) is determined to bring her home.

“Series 1 had elements of a romp ... Here it’s much more people looking into their souls a bit,” said writer Jack Thorne told RadioTimes. “Series 2 is about trust, it’s about learning to trust each other and learning to trust yourself.”

They encounter some new characters, including witch queen Ruta Skadi (Jade Anouka) and Giacomo Paradisi (Terence Stamp), who bears the reality-ripping Subtle Knife.

Here's everything you need to know about how to watch His Dark Materials season 2 on HBO and HBO Max.

How to watch His Dark Materials season 2 anywhere, with a VPN

Just because HBO and HBO Max aren't available everywhere doesn't mean you need to miss His Dark Materials season 2 if you're away from home. Watching along with the rest of the internet can be pretty easy. With the right VPN (virtual private network), you can stream the show from wherever you go.

We've evaluated many options, and the best VPN is ExpressVPN. It meets the VPN needs of the vast majority of users, offering outstanding compatibility with most devices and impressive connection speeds. It's also affordable at $12.95 per month. (Signing up for longer periods of six months or a year reduces the cost even more.)


Our favorite VPN service, ExpressVPN, really shines thanks to its safety, speed and simplicity-to-use. It's also compatible with loads of devices - from iOS and Android to Roku, Apple TV and PlayStations. You'll even get an extra 3 months free if you sign up for a year, or there's a 30-day money-back guarantee if you just want to give it a try.

How to watch His Dark Materials season 2 in the US

In the U.S., His Dark Materials season 2 premieres Monday, November 16 at 9 p.m. ET on HBO. It will also stream on HBO Max.

HBO Max is on Apple TV, iPhone, iPad, Android and Android TV, Chromecast, Playstation 4 and Xbox One, as well as Samsung TVs from 2016 and later.


HBO Max is one of the new kids on the streaming block but it's already got a ton to offer. First, it's got all of HBO, which means you can stream Game of Thrones, The Sopranos, The Wire, Sex and the City and all of premium network's prestige series. Plus, HBO Max has its own originals like Raised By Wolves, Doom Patrol and more.

How to watch His Dark Materials season 2 in the UK

In the UK, His Dark Materials season 2 airs on BBC One one week ahead of the U.S. schedule. Episode 1 already premiered on Nov. 8. Episode 2 will be released Nov. 16.

How to watch His Dark Materials season 2 in Canada

Bad news for Canadians — His Dark Materials season 2 doesn't have a release date in Canada. And HBO Max isn't available in the country, so if you subscribe to that service, you'll need ExpressVPN.

His Dark Materials season 2 trailer

The trailer for His Dark Materials season 2 opens with a woman intoning that the "prophecy is clear: Our duty is to protect the girl and the boy ... wherever they are." That can only mean Lyra and Will, who are seen roaming the streets of Cittàgazze. 

They're clearly both in danger, with Will warning Lyra, "We need to be careful."

His Dark Materials season 2 cast

The cast of His Dark Materials season 2 is led by two young actors: Dafne Keen as Lyra and Amir Wilson as Will Parry. 

Other major cast members include:

  • Ruth Wilson as Marisa Coulter, a powerful figure at the Magisterium who is Lyra's mother.
  • James McAvoy as Lord Asriel Belacqua, a scholar and explorer who is Lyra's father.
  • Lin-Manuel Miranda as Lee Scoresby, an aeronaut
  • Andrew Scott as Colonel John Parry, a marine and explorer who is Will's father. In Lyra's world, he is known as Stanislaus Grumman
  • Anne-Marie Duff as Ma Costa, a Gyptian woman who previously nursed Lyra
  • Clarke Peters as Dr. Carne, the Master of Jordan College
  • Ruta Gedmintas as Serafina Pekkala, a witch queen
  • Will Keen as Father MacPhail, a Magisterium official

Guest stars appearing in season 2 include:

  • Jade Anouka as Ruta Skadi
  • Terence Stamp as Giacomo Paradisi
  • Simone Kirby as Dr. Mary Malone
  • Bella Ramsey as Angelica
  • Ella Schrey-Yeats as Paola
  • Oliver Monaghan as Baruch
  • I-Kay Agu as Balthamos

And then there are the voices of the daemons:

  • Phoebe Waller-Bridge as Sayan Kötör, John Parry's daemon
  • Kit Connor as Pantalaimon, Lyra's daemon
  • Helen McCrory as Stelmaria, Asriel's daemon
  • Cristela Alonzo as Hester, Lee Scoresby's daemon
  • Phoebe Scholfield as Alicia, Dr. Carnes' daemon
  • David Suchet as Kaisa, Serafina Pekkala's daemon
  • Sope Dirisu as Sergi, Ruta Kadi's daemon

Kelly Woo
Streaming Editor

Kelly is the streaming channel editor for Tom’s Guide, so basically, she watches TV for a living. Previously, she was a freelance entertainment writer for Yahoo, Vulture, TV Guide and other outlets. When she’s not watching TV and movies for work, she’s watching them for fun, seeing live music, writing songs, knitting and gardening.