The Witcher is a Netflix original series that has consistently delivered in each of its seasons. With the release of The Witcher season 3 part 1, the show once again gives us the continuation of its original story, but with a new tone and approach that may be setting up something much bigger. Read on for my somewhat spoiler-filled review of The Witcher season 3 part 1.
Please note that while this The Witcher season 3 part 1 review is mostly spoiler-free, we will discuss the ending of The Witcher season 2.
The Witcher Season 2 Recap
When we last left The Witcher and his compatriots, things took a dark turn. Realizing that Princess Ciri (Freya Allen) has elder blood within her, we discover that she is prophesied to bring about the destruction of the World, to make it a better place for Elven kind. This is why the Deathless Mother wants her. And the end of season 2 saw Ciri accidentally opening a portal to the world where the Mother reunited with her Horsemen a.k.a. The Wild Hunt, and bring about the apocalypse.
Ciri, Geralt (Henry Cavill) and Yennefer (Any Chalotra) make their found family official as they vow to take on whatever threat approaches. Keeping in mind that this is after Yennefer betrayed Geralt by taking Ciri to the Mother, in exchange for her magic. But at the last minute, she saved Ciri instead. While the cliffhanger revealed that the Emperor of Nilfgaard, the main baddie of the first two seasons, is actually Ciri’s father!
The Witcher Season 3 Part 1 Review Is Spoiler-Free
There is seemingly a subtle shift in tone from season 2 to The Witcher season 3 part 1. While the series initially began as more mature, adult-themed, dark and serious, this season feels more uplifting. At the risk of jinxing it, given there is still a part 2 of season 3 left to release, this season feels sweet, more romantic and, dare I say it, wholesome.
The relationship between the three main characters is incredibly sweet and their dynamic has gotten much better. It’s refreshing to see an action and plot-driven show like this choose not to create conflict and drama within the characters with easily resolvable plot points. Geralt, Ciri and Yennefer all being on the same page with one another, bonding and growing feels out of place in a show with brutal killings and monsters. But it’s a very refreshing change.
Similarly, other characters also get positive arcs, as season 3 seemingly is setting up a bigger threat and some more interesting things to come.
The Witcher Season 3 Proves Conflict Can Come From Outside Sources
In many ways, season 3 evolves the character of Geralt in cool new ways. While he accepts Ciri, as well as Yennfer, he also finds closure in some of the other internal conflicts they’ve set up from season 1. Accordingly, it feels like a full-circle moment for many other characters as well. Yennefer is looking for redemption from her former mentor, and Ciri has to reconcile the duality of her powers, her abilities and her status as a princess. Season 3 does a great job of juggling these various character arcs, while also setting the stage for the back half of the season which is sure to be even more intense and surprising. But that’s where the season kind of drags, so far.
The Political Machinations Could Lose Some Fans
The one complaint I would have about The Witcher season 3 part 1 is just how political the story of the world is. When audiences aren’t with the 3 leads, the story is setting up a massive political showdown between the kingdoms and the various parties with their own agendas. The season relies on the deep technical knowledge of all past events between the Elves, Nilfgaard, the history of Cintra, and many other political goings on. The Brotherhood of Sorcerers plays a huge part in this season, but again, we need to know the details of each character and their history to understand their motivations and scheming now.
It’s not a huge complaint, and while all the secretive and suspenseful plot is very interesting, it may definitely lose some audiences along the way. There are also many unanswered questions that hopefully will resolve themselves in part 2. It’s difficult to fully review The Witcher season 3 part 1, knowing that most of it is set up for what else is to come. But overall, the chemistry and dynamic of the lead characters and their individual stories are much more interesting than the larger plot. At least, for now.
The Witcher season 3 part 1 is now streaming on Netflix.
What did you think of part 1 of this new season of The Witcher so far? Let me know in the comments below or on Twitter at @theshahshahid.
The Witcher Season 3 Part 1 Review
- Acting - 9.5/109.5/10
- Cinematography/Visual Effects - 9/109/10
- Plot/Screenplay - 8/108/10
- Setting/Theme - 8.5/108.5/10
- Watchability - 9/109/10
- Rewatchability - 9/109/10