Death never shocked Brunhilde Blum since she was adopted into a family of undertakers and grew up to become a funeral director herself. Her job required her to deal with dead bodies, and over the course of time, she learned to communicate with the dead and found a certain peace in her job. While Blum was a strong-headed individual, the death of her husband completely broke her down. It was a regular morning, and she was bidding goodbye to her husband as he was preparing to leave on his bike. The moment he took off, a black rover ran over him, and in a blink of an eye, her husband was lying on the road in a pool of blood. Her husband was a policeman, and she soon realized that a number of people wanted to silence him. The Netflix German-language series, “Woman of the Dead,” is about Blum’s journey to find her husband’s killer.
‘Woman Of The Dead’ Plot Summary: What Is The Series About?
While the death of Mark had left Blum devastated, she focused on finding the perpetrator. She wanted answers, and she obsessively searched for them. She did not have time to process the multitude of emotions she experienced; justice was all that she cared about. Even after informing the police and providing them with the details of the car, they barely put in an effort to uncover the truth. Blum realized soon enough that she could trust no one and that the search for truth was going to be a lonely journey. She found Mark’s phone kept in the pouch attached to his bike. She came across names and numbers she had never seen before. While she initially wondered if Mark was cheating on her, she soon realized that he was working on a secret mission that he could not trust his colleagues with. Mark was a sympathetic person who tried to understand the reason behind the crimes someone committed instead of passing a harsh judgment. Reza Shahid was a Syrian refugee whom Mark had brought into his house to help him, and he later started assisting Blum in her job as an undertaker. While Blum could not trust Reza because he used to be a thief at one point, Mark believed that, given a better opportunity, people could change.
Using Mark’s phone, Blum found the location where Dunja was kept hidden. Mark was helping Dunja, an immigrant who had illegally entered Austria. After learning about Mark’s death, Dunja exclaimed that Mark was purposefully killed and that it could not have been an accident. When Dunja and her sisters illegally migrated to Austria, they were handed over to a local person. After taking a few sips of the water from the bottles they were handed, Dunja remembered waking up and finding herself trapped in a room. Her sisters were dead, and they were surrounded by men in masks. Dunja somehow managed to escape from the place and ran to the toll booth. That was how Mark got to know about her, and he started investigating the case. Blum offered Dunja a place to stay to keep her safe.
Clearly, Mark’s death was not an accident, and it seemed that a group of men who fetishized taking Polaroid pictures while abusing women were involved in the case. While Blum had anticipated a larger conspiracy behind the death of her husband, she had not assumed the perpetrators to be a group of powerful masked men.
Who Were The Members Of The Secret Society?
Blum focused on finding the man who took the Polaroid pictures. It was not usual for someone to use a Polaroid camera; therefore, she believed that finding him would be a relatively easier task. She was told by a local camera store that there were galleries that exhibited the works of artists who specialized in Polaroid photography. After visiting a gallery, she learned that Edvin Schonborn was a popular artist with a special interest in Polaroids. The Schonborn family was the most influential family in town; they owned most of the properties in the locality and were planning on starting a luxury ski resort that they wanted their son to head. Blum contacted Edwin and arranged a meeting with him. She expressed how she admired his art and that she wanted to model for him. While Edwin wanted to pursue a career as an artist, his mother wanted him to be more attentive to business. Edwin prioritized his meeting with the eager model and was scheduled to meet his mother and their investors the next day. While taking Blum’s pictures, she mentioned the way they abused the girls before killing them. Edwin was shocked when he realized that Blum knew their dark secret. He immediately attacked her, but she managed to overpower him. She brought him home in a coffin, and while she wanted to further question him about their operations, he had already passed away. She took his phone from him and noticed that, apart from his mother, there was a group in which he actively participated. She also observed that his body had the same inscription that the pastor at Nela’s school had. Not only that, but Edwin had also taken pictures of the pastor, Father Jaunig, making Blum further doubt his involvement in the case.
Dunja recognized his voice and identified him as the man behind the rabbit mask. She parked Edwin’s car in front of Jaunig’s place and texted the group of four that she (Edwin) wanted to meet all the members of the group after mass. She noticed that, apart from Jaunig, there was the restauranteur, Bertl Puch. She now knew the three members of the group of four. That day she visited Jaunig for confession and questioned him about the death of her husband, but he refused to answer. Even after questioning him multiple times, all he came up with were hateful comments about Blum. She could not take his lies and hatred anymore, and she burned him to death.
Blum walked up to Bertl Puch one night and requested that he make her a drink even though his restaurant had closed. Her purpose was to find answers, and she was prepared to attack him with a deadly injection. After injecting him, she questioned him about Mark’s death, but he overpowered her and stabbed her leg with a knife. He locked her in the freezer, and she called Reza to help her deal with the situation. The injection had nearly killed Puch, though it was the shot fired by Reza that ultimately killed him. Even though Blum never shared much with Reza, he assumed that she was taking care of those who dared to take her husband away. Mark had given him his police gun a day before his death, asking him to take care of his family if he was ever absent. Even though Reza was someone Blum could not trust initially, he later became a part of their family, and he could go to any extent to protect them. Blum was admitted to the hospital after she fainted while confronting Sebastian Hackspiel, who proved not to be involved with the group of four.
At the hospital, Blum met Dr. Ludwig. The doctor doubted Blum’s explanation for the injury, and the moment he texted the group of four, he realized that the phone Blum was carrying buzzed as well. He realized that Blum was involved in the disappearance of Edwin, and he later injected Blum with a high dose of insulin to end her life. He explained that he and his friends had always been careful about their dark adventures, and it was only because Dunja managed to escape that they were suddenly in a lot of trouble. He mentioned that Mark would have been alive had he maintained his silence. He could have saved Mark’s life after he was admitted to the hospital, but he chose to kill him instead. When he left the room to attend to a patient in the emergency, Blum gathered her strength and crawled out of the door and hydrated herself. She went back to her bed before Ludwig entered, and she waited for him to get close to her. She choked him with a tube and killed him on the same bed where he had hoped for Blum to die. She called Reza again to help her get rid of the body.
Blum believed that it was her last murder since all four members of the group were now dead. Since she was an undertaker, she could easily get rid of the bodies, and she did so without an ounce of disgust or sentiment. While she believed the police did not have solid proof against her, Massimo found her earring in Puch’s restaurant, making him question her involvement in Puch’s disappearance. The police chief was confident about Blum’s involvement and believed it to be her act of revenge since she had made contact with every victim who went missing. Without the dead bodies, the police did not have a solid case, and Blum used that to her advantage.
‘Woman Of The Dead’ Ending Explained: Who Was the Fifth Member Of The Secret Group? Was Blum Involved In The Death Of Her Parents?
Blum was attracted to Massimo, but she could not imagine taking their friendship forward. She was still coping with the loss of her husband, and she was not ready to start a romantic relationship. There was a distance between Massimo and Ute, his wife. Even though she tried to make romantic gestures, he never showed interest in her. She believed that their distance was a result of the miscarriages and their inability to form a family. The indifference of her husband and the sadness of not becoming a mother overwhelmed Ute, and she would often spend her time drinking to numb her pain. When she got to know that Massimo and Blum were making out in the parking lot of a local pub, she refused to continue with the marriage and gave Massimo two weeks to leave her apartment. Since Ute was gone, Massimo called Blum to his place for dinner. The absence of Ute initially made Blum feel strange, but gradually she realized that it was more than just a dinner. Massimo discussed how he knew that Blum was involved in every disappearance and death that recently occurred. But he was ready to maintain silence because of his affection for Blum.
Meanwhile, Reza was going over the footage that Hackspiel had handed Blum after he found it in Edwin’s place. He realized that the group consisted of five members, and they were yet to know who the fifth member was. He called to inform Blum, but she was busy with Massimo. Blum stopped Massimo while making out; she was not emotionally ready to get involved. As Massimo was tucking in his shirt, Blum noticed that he had the same Boys’ Scout inscription that all four members had. He was a part of the gang, and he pretended to be on Blum’s side all along. He was the one driving the black Rover that ran over Mark. He was also responsible for Dunja’s death. He explained that he was the executioner of the group because none of the other members could dare commit murder. He enjoyed killing the innocent, as that was the only way to confirm that their secret remained safe. He believed that he and Blum were the same; they were murderers because they never felt deeply emotional about the lives that they took. Blum explained that she killed to bring justice, but he thought that it was just her way to get away from the sins she committed. Blum threatened to shoot him, but she soon realized that the gun was not loaded. After beating Bloom unconscious, Massimo took her body to the old mountain station, where all the young women were brought and killed. Reza joined the pieces and drove to the mountain station to save Blum. Blum came to her senses before Massimo could set her on fire. While Massimo tried to tackle Reza, Blum attacked him from behind and stabbed him to death.
We later learn that the group of five was born the day Thiele’s daughter died. Thiele was hellbent on not allowing the Schonborns to build their ropeway to connect their ski areas on his property, and without his consent, they could not proceed. Thiele later regretted challenging the Schonborns because that ultimately led to his daughter’s death. The group of five took her on a ride on the ropeway, and that was when Edwin expressed his disgust for her and her father. He wanted to teach her a lesson for the trouble her father caused. They raped her, and later Massimo advised them to kill her to get away with their crime. That was the first time Massimo committed a murder, and the group promised to protect one another. The inscription was their way of promising to maintain silence till the end of time. Thiele never got to know what happened to his daughter, and Sebastian was blamed for her death because he used to be her friend, and she was last seen with him.
Mrs. Schonborn brought Sebastian under her wing to perform her dirty work, making him believe that she was doing him a favor. After finding Edwin’s videos, he realized that Mrs. Schonborn had employed him out of guilt for the crimes her son committed. She continues to remain clueless about what happened to her son, though she surely can assume the worst. Blum and Reza managed to convince the police that it was Massimo who had conducted all the murders, and every piece of evidence related to each murder was found in his apartment. Blum met with Mrs. Schonborn and discussed the crimes committed by her son, but she maintained that he was an innocent boy who made friends with the wrong people. Blum blackmailed her into staying away from her life now that she had video evidence of the crime. Mrs. Schonborn might have assumed what had happened to her son, and she, too, was scared of her son’s dark past surfacing and spoiling the business that she had built with a lot of hard work. Even though she wanted to know what happened to her son, her hands were tied, and she was forced to remain silent all her life.
At the end of “Woman of the Dead,” it is revealed that Blum was responsible for the deaths of her parents. Her adoptive parents were ruthless with her and punished her whenever she made a mistake. Her father would lock her in a coffin if she refused to perform the duties of an undertaker. She grew up without parental affection, and that was the reason why she chose to kill her parents when she got the opportunity. Out in the sea in a boat, her parents decided to go for a swim. Blum removed the stairs and listened to music, pretending not to hear them as they cried for help. Blum had a low emotional quotient; she lacked basic sympathy for those she did not care about. While a lack of parental affection can be the cause of a troubled childhood, that is not a strong reason for anyone to murder their parents. At the end of the day, Massimo was right about how it was because of their lack of emotions that they could commit a series of murders. While it was the thirst for revenge that resulted in the deaths of the five members, can the deaths of her parents ever be justified? Mark knew Blum’s truth, and he believed that she deserved another chance. He loved her for the person she was, and Blum knew that she would never find that kind of love again. “Woman of the Dead” is all about how Blum’s rage, hatred, and love all act together and result in the deaths of the five members, bringing a sense of peace to her life that she is always in search of.
“Woman of the Dead” is a 2023 Drama Thriller series streaming on Netflix.