As has been proven repeatedly, making a video game adaptation, or other adaptations for that matter, for TV or movie screens isn’t as easy as some would like it to be. There have been several examples when TV or movie makers just take the “base stuff” from the video game properties and just do whatever they want with it. Or they do “just enough” to make you think it’s the same story, then take a twist to “shake things up.” But as recent adaptations have proven, you don’t need to do that to have success. But with series like The Witcher, the struggle is still happening.
The Netflix series, arguably one of its most beloved shows, has had a love/hate relationship with fans and critics. For example, in the first season, people liked the show overall, but due to the format of how the episodes were shot and woven together, it was confusing to follow. Season 2 fixed that, but then they met the “adaptation problem” by veering heavily from the source material and making characters do things they wouldn’t have done previously.
The biggest example is Yennifer, the beloved sorceress and on-again/off-again partner to Geralt of Rivia. In Season 2, she did many questionable things that may have set up a new dynamic between her, Geralt, and Ciri, but it angered fans heavily as that’s not how “Yen” was in the books or even in the video games.
Thankfully, with Season 3 coming out this year, we might see a “course correction.” According to showrunner Lauren Hissrich, she knows of the “problems” that were caused by Season 2 and promises to fix them in Season 3:
“‘How could you do that to these characters?’ ‘They’ll never be able to forgive her.’ Well, that just becomes a story problem for us,” said Hissrich, as posted on Twitter.
While that’s nice to say, that’s not the only problem The Witcher has on its back. For example, the biggest problem is that Henry Cavill, who plays Geralt of Rivia, has left the role. He filmed Season 3, but he’ll be replaced by Liam Hemsworth in Season 4, which has already been approved.
At first, fans thought this was so Cavill could do certain movie roles. However, after the news broke, word started to spread that Cavill wasn’t happy with the changes to the lore and felt the writers were hurting the show and thus didn’t want to be a part of it.
We’ll have to see how Season 3 goes and whether this franchise has a live-action future.