The Witcher is arriving on Netflix and fans could not be more excited to see it. Starring Henry Cavill as Geralt of Rivia, the story follows the witches who goes across the Continent, hunting monsters as his training has helped him do. But with the series being adapted from a hugely popular book series – how does it compare?
Fans across the world have been desperate to see their favourite book series come to the small screen – again – with Henry Cavill in the leading role.
The original short stories have already been adapted into a video game, another TV series and plenty of spin-off books, so The Witcher’s arrival on Netflix is certainly welcome.
There seems to be a major disparity between fans’ and critics’ views on the series, but one thing is for sure – it is a very close and straight adaptation of the books rather than the video game.
The Witcher showrunner Lauren Hissrich told Entertainment Weekly: “We’re not adapting the video games, it’s a straight adaptation of the books.
“They went one direction, we actually get to go another.”
This hasn’t won over many critics, like Darren Franich and Kristen Baldwin of Entertainment Weekly, who gave the series a grade F in their review and called it a “boring fantasy adaptation.”
Franich said: “Why, oh why, oh why he [Henry Cavill] opted to star in a series that buries him under a bad wig and worse color contacts is a mystery to me.
“Or maybe it’s a failure of franchise-chasing… the pilot has certain tropes from that medium exported without imagination to television.”
He added: “This is the first TV show I’ve ever seen that would actually be better with commercial breaks.
“The goofy syndicated fantasy of yesteryear had to have a brisk pace, building every 12 minutes to an act-breaking cliffhanger.
“The Witcher fully embraces the endless-movie layout of the worst Blank Check streaming TV… Alas, my destiny is to never watch this borefest ever again.”
The Guardian was not much kinder, though it gave the series three stars.
Lucy Mangan said: “There are attempts at knowingness: at one point, our Henry tells someone a prophecy has to rhyme.
“This is not a good idea, as it throws into too sharp relief the limits to what Geralt and his merry band of sorceresses and proto-feminist princesses can be said to know.
“Play it straight, dear scriptwriters, or don’t play it at all.”
Cavill’s wig seems to be a huge issue for critics, but fans are far more excited and happy by the adaptation – meaning it must compare pretty well to the source material.
One fan wrote on Rotten Tomatoes: “Cavill’s performance as geralt is fantastic, as is Allan’s regarding Cirilla.
“This new netflix original nails the dangerous and visceral reality Sapkowski created in his works.
“The fight sequences are by far away better than the best game of thrones ever had to offer. I truly believe this to have great potential as a series moving forward.
“(Fans of the books) There are minor deviations but for the majority, it is a faithful rendition.”
Another added: “Absolutely amazing. The costumes. The setting. The story sticking to the books. I am so f****ing happy I can’t stop watching it.”
Fans seem to feel it has stayed close to the books and done them justice, so hopefully book fans will be happy to see this new adaptation.
And with a second series already commissioned, hopefully fans will be happy with what they see.
The Witcher is on Netflix now