Ouuuff, this is a swing and a miss for me. Acting seems a bit too slocky and production overly manicured in parts, and unfortunately I just can't 'believe' Henry Cavill in the role. Maybe it'll be ok?
I'm getting some "In the Name of the King: A Dungeon Siege Tale" vibes from this which isnt great. I dont think Cavill looks bad in the role though, certainly much better than those pre-production shots or whatever they were.
Ultimately though I feel like this will be shrugged off as a Game of Thrones clone by most people, which is sad for the books and the games. I dont feel bad for Andrzej Sapkowski though, who is clearly just in it for the paychecks at this point and has been for awhile.
@boozak: I don't want to defend the guy because he comes across as a huge jerk in that interview he did with Waypoint a couple years ago, but I don't think it's fair to say Sapkowski is in it for the money.
This looks decent. I'm not a fan of Cavill, but everything else looks fine. There's a brief second in the trailer where he's swinging a chain, which is callback to the opening cinematic of the first game, which is itself a nearly play-by-play visual telling of how that fight goes down in the book.
It looks fine? A step above the other fantasy shows sans GoT, but not GoT level on the production front. Some of it looks a little Sy-Fy quality, but other bits look quite good.
We'll see how the acting holds up. I haven't seen enough of Henry Cavill to be convinced one way or the other, but the rest of the cast is a little concerning. It's not that they're bad actors, they could all be fantastic, but generally a show like this will try to cast a few more well established actors as a draw to round out the supporting cast, and it could be a sign that the budget for the show isn't really there, or they're blowing a lot of it on Henry Cavill. Could be fine, but combined with some of the more dodgy looking parts I'm not completely convinced.
I'm quite skeptical honestly. Here's the thing with me, and I say this as a fan of the games so book readers can feel free to correct me on this (though try not to dogpile on me). I've been under the impression that the books don't have anywhere near the sense of humor the games do, which is one of my favorite parts about them. Obviously they have the intrigue and world building that fans love in spades but I never got the sense that the books are exactly chock full of knee-slapping hilarity. Again though, I could be completely off base with that assumption. The production values looks fine though in regards to Netflix produced stuff lately I've been far more put off by shoddy directing than by anything technical or talent related.
@mezmero: the books have about as much humor as the games but it stems largely from secondary characters and much less from Geralt although he does have his moments. What the books don’t have as much as the games is ironically the whole monster hunting thing. The first novel sort of sets up a “main quest” for him and at that point they just follow that plot line through without many detours. Overall the novels have much less action. Plenty of scenes of kings speaking of borders and trade, of birthright, of internal politics. This is probably why the trailer shows so little if Geralt because he actually doesn’t play that big a role in the big scheme at play.
If the show is going to follow the books closely then people will be in for a rather deflating surprise as Geralt is even more grumpy and bullheaded to a fault.
@humanity: Appreciate the info. You'll forgive me for assuming the worst when it comes to the humor given how salty the author has come across in various quotes. It does in fact dishearten me to hear the Geralt doesn't sound as witty as he is in the games though that's to be expected given that he's not doing commentary on the absurd monster encounters and contracts that get peppered through side quests.
@efesell: I think on the one hand there SHOULD be some recourse for him getting paid some extra money based on how unexpectedly and wildly successful the game series was.
On the other hand, his weird assertion that the games would make people like the books less or make the books less popular is, of course, utter nonsense. The last book was only translated into English a couple years ago. It's undeniable that the games made people interested in the books.
Looks fine, honestly. Just somewhat concerned about how they're going to handle the timeline considering the trailer shows story bits from the Slaughter of Cintra to the origins of Yennefer. That's a substantial amount of time there. Also, which Geralt they're going to go for, because book Geralt is super fucking dry and a lot of the story works out the way it does due to him being like that.
I think it looks fine for the most part. I've never been a fan of his acting, but Cavill at least looks the part, and a lot of the production design seems pretty good. Glad to see that there look to be some practical effects for some of the creatures as opposed to being a total CGI fest.
My only concerns are with Ciri and Yennifer. I'm glad that they are going back in the timeline to portray Yennifer pre-magicked beauty, but the actress feels like she lacks a certain . . . intensity? inherent in the character. The book version of Yennifer was pretty hard edged, bordering on sociopathic in spots, and I'm not sure I'm getting that here.
Ditto with Ciri. They've aged the character up, and I'll withhold judgment until I actually see where they're going with the plot, but she feels too waifish right now, enough that I can't really see them bridging the gap from that to where she ultimately ends up.
I dunno. Maybe I was just expecting a complete dumpster fire and what they're showing actually looks at least competent?
Need to see more of Cavill actually acting, but I've always thought the English voice actor for the game series was awful, so my bar is not very high. Anything better than a bad Clint Eastwood impression will be an improvement.
As for the actual story... it's a world of magical monsters and a dude who kills them. The staying power of the series will hinge on how good the writers are at making an inherently silly and fantastical setting interesting.
@mezmero: I think he's much more likable in the books and has a more rounded personality in them. But I thought that Witcher 3 (the only game I've played of the series) made Geralt more of a cliched video game protagonist for the worse. I really did not start liking Geralt until Ciri re-entered the picture in Witcher 3.
Awesome news for the people working on it, but the few times this happens it is always surprising to me. Especially for a show that hasn't even had one season drop yet.
@sethmode: Usually I think it means either Netflix feels good about the quality of the show, it’s tracking well, or both. Regardless, I’m sure fans of the game or the books will be unhappy. Haha
With Game of Thrones out of the way, maybe this show can benefit from that void? Idk.
It’s always interesting to see how popular things get interpreted and adapted to a different medium so we will see. Video games and books probably make more sense as a TV show than a movie so at least it has that going for it?
@liquiddragon: Interesting that the Twitter post for Season 2 has a picture of two swords on it. The first season very definitely shows Geralt using one sword, making it true to the books. A lot of the other previews they've shown kind of hint they went closer to the source material (hunchback Yennifer, non-red head Triss, focusing on the Ciri origin story). Maybe a sign they're trying to split the difference to draw in more of the gaming audience?
I never played The Witcher 3 because I was like "I want to read the books first" and I've still not read the books so with the series now about to be out I have no idea what order or when I'll eventually get around to Witchering. I might just cave and play The Witcher 3 this holidays and start reading the books.
Does anyone know how the books, games and series are connected? Is it the same story, etc.?
@alias: All the books take place first and the three games take place chronologically afterward. The games are technically non-canon to the books, so both the books and this show should be able to stand completely on their own. The games do draw from the books more and more as they go on, especially 3, but they're still relatively stand-alone.
@therealturk: I c. You definitely know more about Witcher than I do. I've only played 2 and 3 and haven't sought out the books or even gone down a wikia rabbit hole. Probably my ignorance will end up helping me take the show for what it is. I do hope they take some of the side quests and turn them into episodes. That'd be cool.
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