The Witcher season 3 is “fairly representative” of the books

Image: Netflix. Henry Cavill as Geralt of Rivia in The Witcher season 3.
Image: Netflix. Henry Cavill as Geralt of Rivia in The Witcher season 3. /

The third season of The Witcher is on the way, and fans are…apprehensive to cautiously optimistic. The first season was well-received, and the second changed so much of the novels by Andrzej Sapkowski that fans of his could barely recognize the story anymore. Now we’ve learned that season 3 will be the last time Henry Cavill will play lead character Geralt of Rivia before getting replaced by Liam Hemsworth in season 4. I honestly don’t know what to expect from this season.

The cast and crew tried to hype up the new episodes by talking to Tudum, Netflix’s own news site. “[The political atmosphere] is so different and so tense [this season],” said Joey Batey, who plays the bard Jaskier. ” [It’s] fairly representative of what happens in the text.”

Oh, it’s fairly representative of the source material this time? I suppose that’s better than “the writers glanced at the books before deciding to do their own thing.” And I realize that some people probably don’t care whether the show is adapting the books faithfully, only whether the show is good. But the series went so afield of the text last season, with such rocky results, that I’m on my guard. Let’s hope that the adaptation of Time of Contempt goes better.

There is “a real threat” in The Witcher season 3

So what exactly happens in The Witcher season 3? Well, a lot of people are after Ciri (Freya Allen), the surrogate daughter of Geralt and his sorceress paramour Yennefer (Anya Chalotra), and also a child of destiny who may be the most powerful person on the planet.

“Now, there is a real threat,” Cavill said. “It’s genuine; it’s no longer theoretical — it’s practical. And it’s very, very dangerous. They are walking into the lion’s den everywhere they go.”

With folks like the ruler of Nilfgaard, Emperor Emhyr var Emreis (Bart Edwards), on the hunt for Ciri, the threat is real indeed. “War has been threatened for so long,” Batey said. “Finally we’re like, ‘Oh, god. It’s here.’ The epicness, the stakes for the Continent, in the macro sense, is huge. But the micro stakes are even bigger.”

Geralt, Yennefer and Ciri will become a family in The Witcher season 3

The micro stakes involve Geralt, Yennefer and Ciri forming a kind of found family and protecting each other, something that happens in the books. The issue is that season 2 changed the books so that Yennefer tried to kill Ciri in order to regain her magical powers, which could make it hard to accept these three as a loving family unit. “A big part of [Ciri’s] journey is trusting that they love her and trusting that they care for her,” said Allan.

"“People don’t always make the right choices. But ultimately, I think everyone knows [Yen]’s good at the core. They have such similarities that I think Ciri can’t help but latch onto Yennefer… Also, through Yennefer teaching Ciri, they do begin to build that trust up."

Chalotra agrees that Yennefer has “got a lot of work to do.” But, she says, “I believe in her.” Best of luck to them.

Geralt embraces fatherhood in The Witcher season 3

As for Geralt, he takes to fatherhood like a fish to water. “It’s quite lovely to see that underneath this cynical, acerbic, walls-up kind of nature is actually a very loving core,” Cavill said. Geralt also lets Ciri do more fighting, since she has an ambition to be a witcher like her dad. “When she exposes herself, he will protect her, but otherwise he’s letting her do the fight.”

Meanwhile, somehow, Yennefer and Geralt will strengthen their connection, even though Geralt was aghast at her decisions in season 2. “With Yennefer, it becomes a love rather than a dalliance,” Cavill said.

Completing the circle, Yennefer will take to motherhood, something she bemoaned that she couldn’t do naturally after her transformation into a sorceress. “She’s struck by this newfound family. She always wanted to become a mother,” Chalotra said. “Yennefer and Ciri is altogether something new. These feelings towards her are deep and strong, and come as a surprise. She went into this relationship for herself and in it found a purpose beyond anything she’s set her heart on before. She cares deeply about something bigger than herself for the first time.”

One thing no one addresses in this interview is why Henry Cavill is leaving the series, possibly because it would require wrangling with some uncomfortable truths. But we don’t know exactly why he left, so we’ll let the show do the talking when the first chunk of new episodes arrives on Netflix on June 29. A second chunk will finish out season 3 on July 27.

dark. Next. The Wheel of Time season 2 finally gets a release date! (and pictures)

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