Foundation Episode 3 Ending Explained: The Vault & Salvor Hardin

Foundation episode 3 sees the future of the entire galaxy at risk, as Salvor Hardin confronts the first Seldon Crisis and the Vault awakens.

Warning: This article contains spoilers for Foundation episode 3.

Apple TV+’s Foundation episode 3 leaves Salvor Hardin in a crisis, while the mysterious null field generated by the Vault begins to extend across the planet Terminus. Showrunner David Goyer has brought Isaac Asimov’s classic Foundation series to life on the small screen, but that poses real challenges. As David Goyer himself observed in an interview, “The first book is kind of anthological, and there are these enormous time-jumps that happen in between the stories, and a lot of the characters don’t repeat from one story to the next.” As a result, Foundation episode 3 doesn’t even attempt to resolve the cliffhanger ending of episode 2, which saw Hari Seldon murdered and Gaal Dornick placed in cryogenic suspension. Instead, it skips forward in time – initially focusing on Brother Dusk’s passing, and then forward again to events that happen some 35 years after Seldon’s followers left Trantor for the galactic rim.

By now, the Trantor settlement is well-established and work is underway preserving the knowledge that will be key to reestablishing civilization after the coming galactic Dark Ages. But there are predators at large on Terminus, as well as a mysterious artifact known as the Vault that poses real challenges to the colonists, and so they have established the position of Warden to protect them from the hazards of their world. The current Warden is Salvor Hardin (Leah Harvey), a character who’s been substantially changed from the books, where they were male and actually served as Mayor of the Foundation rather than Warden. Foundation‘s version of Salvor Hardin is much more action-oriented that Isaac Asimov’s version, and much more well-rounded to boot.

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