The Witcher is a Polish-American fantasy drama web television series created by Lauren Schmidt Hissrich for Netflix. It is based on the book series of the same name by Polish writer Andrzej Sapkowski. The series premiered on Netflix on December 20, 2019.
The characters and storyline managed to grip me throughout the entire season and I enjoyed every minute of it. The casting seemed almost perfect and now, some of the characters seem like they could never be acted by anyone else.
The storyline might seem confusing and wild at first and takes time to figure out and connect with it but once I did, I loved it. I came to realize that this wildness and difference from any other show is what makes it The Witcher – and I didn’t come to watch a remake of game of thrones, so I loved it. They delve into excellent and unique ideas and plots that make the show something definitely worth watching.
The strength of this series really relies on the cast and the writers. It is truly refreshing to see a group of people who all seem to really love what they’re doing and be putting so much effort into their performances.
Henry Cavill is spectacular as the iconic Geralt of Rivia and expands on previous iterations of the character, making the role his own while still staying true to all the aspects that makes the character so great.
He does an amazing job in his role and his performance was one of the focal points that I enjoyed in the show.
The supporting characters and two other leads (Anya Chalotra as Yennefer of Vengerberg and Freya Allen as Princess Cirilla) all bring this fantasy world to life with very real performances that remind us that they don’t have to be saving the world from an apocalyptic danger for their stories to hold true dramatic weight, and that’s also a testament to the great writing this series has.
The backdrop of conquest, war, and apocalyptic prophecy was well balanced with Geralt’s daily routine of monster hunting, a task his kind was designed to do as a Witcher. I’d add that the magical effects were also perfectly done. They were both subtle and effective.
The combat in this series is beautifully done. The scenes with Geralt fighting enemies with the camera panning him from the back is cinematography at it’s finest, along with the very gory, explicit kill scenes, all tying into the dark fantasy world. The sword fights all seemed realistic and natural, along with the powerful but not over powered magic.
My only criticism is that it can be difficult to follow at times when it jumps around to different points in time, even for someone familiar with the lore. However, paying closer attention pays off, and re-watching certain scenes can be both rewarding and productive. Though I’d humbly suggest that Hissrich include some date annotation going forward – and trust that it won’t detract from the story.
In summary, the first season is off with a bloody, sardonic, and immensely satisfying start. It’s a masterfully crafted and acted adaptation, and I have little doubt that it will become massively popular as it continues. Personally, I can’t wait to see where it goes from here.
Do keep in mind, the timeline in the episodes are not linear so keep an eye out for the obvious hints that will help you make the connection.
Really excited for the upcoming season.