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The Witcher season 2 review: Henry Cavill’s Geralt embraces fatherhood as monstrous series makes enchanting return

Geralt of Rivia returns with a new purpose (Credits: Netflix/Jay Maidment)

The Witcher season 2 sees Geralt of Rivia (Henry Cavill) embark on a new journey, experiencing fatherhood for the first time as he takes on the responsibility of looking after Princess Ciri (Freya Allan) while coping with the supposed loss of his love, sorceress Yennefer (Anya Chalotra).

In the first season of the Netflix show, fans met the live-action version of the titular witcher for the first time, with many lauding the actor’s depiction of the character from the book series and video games of the same name.

He starts off as a rather surly fellow, extremely serious and brooding as he focuses on the most important task at hand – destroying monsters.

However, the mutated human’s trajectory ventures off into an unexpected direction when he claims his ‘Child Surprise’, which involves his and Ciri’s destinies being intertwined as they met for the first time in the season one finale.

Freya and Henry have a captivating dynamic from the get-go, as Geralt embraces his paternal side to protect Ciri at all costs from monstrous creatures and human threats alike.

For a character that is so well-known, it’s refreshing to witness the Superman actor unveil a new, softer side to the witcher, while also leaning more into Geralt’s surprisingly witty sense of humour alongside his witcher comrades and father figure Vesemir (Kim Bodnia).

Ciri must pick up some new skills during her journey with Geralt (Picture: Netflix)

From the very beginning of season two, the high stakes of Geralt and Ciri’s journey are immediately made apparent as the duo face terrifying encounters together.

All the more reason for Geralt to get Ciri to Kaer Morhen – the place where he grew up and was trained to become a witcher – as quickly as possible so that she too can learn to fight and fend for herself.

Freya has admitted in interviews that she wished to explore Ciri in a greater detail than was possible in season one, as the young princess coped with the mysterious power growing inside of her.

Season two allows that intriguing character development to take place, as the actor throws herself into the physical demands of Ciri being trained by a group of ruthless witchers who are happy to see the princess fall flat on her face over and over again with very little mercy.

Yennefer is on a journey of self-discovery in the new episodes (Picture: Netflix)

For those who weren’t already familiar with The Witcher books and video games, watching season one may have been extremely baffling at first, as the series throws viewers straight into action with three different, confusing timelines.

However, now that those timelines have merged and viewers are accustomed to many of the characters, season two is thankfully far more clear in terms of its storytelling, with viewers able to focus on the narrative rather than trying to simultaneously work out what happened when.

The Witcher ups the ante in season two when it comes to the monsters that Geralt must face, this time with Ciri at his side desperate to help in any way she can but still in the process of finding her strength.

Meanwhile, Jaskier (Joey Batey) makes a joyous return, giving his character more depth as he takes on a monumental, life-risking task, as Yennefer goes on a fascinating journey of a self-discovery, her wry cynicism still intact despite the trauma she and many others experienced at the Battle of Sodden.

Geralt is reunited with his father figure, Vesemir, who raised him as a child (Picture: Netflix)

One would think that the second season would boast sharper dialogue than it does, with the writers relying on a plethora of frequent f words to emphasise the gravity of the danger that Geralt, Yennefer and others find themselves in.

Nonetheless, two years on from its original release, The Witcher has maintained the same level of thrill that it delivered in season one for its new episodes, serving fight scenes that fans will be left drooling over and a curious plotline involving Ciri’s powers, her connection with Geralt and her potential alliance with Yennefer that has a long way to go.

Verdict on The Witcher season 2

Despite some criticising The Witcher when comparing its calibre to other epic fantasy shows such as Game of Thrones, season two has proven why the series has accumulated such a strong and passionate fanbase.

The drama feels far more palatable now that the disparate timelines have come together, while Henry and Freya’s natural on-screen chemistry as a father-daughter duo becomes the core of the tale.

Some aspects of the tale are still rough around the edges, such as when it comes to the dialogue and the more complex storylines that may leave fans scratching their heads if they haven’t read the books or played the video games.

However, season two has demonstrated that The Witcher has a strong future ahead as fans look forward to the already-confirmed third season.

The Witcher season 2 launches on December 17 on Netflix.

 


Credit: Original article published here.

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