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The Witcher - new TV series based on the books (not the games) coming from Netflix!


Doctor Shark
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Just finished the first episode.  I was a bit worried to start off with tbh because the monster CGI was pretty terrible but I thought after the first 5 mins it was really good overall.  Cavill was convincing and the backdrop around the city falling really interesting.  I didn't like Ciri's actress but she has plenty of time to change my mind.  

 

First episode is a solid 8/10

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Only played about half of TW3, never read the books, but I liked literally everything about Episode 1. The fight scenes in Blaviken were superbly done. A cracking start for me.

 

I’m going to enjoy this a lot. Ep2 or more Expanse? Quite the dilemma.

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Only watched the first episode and looking forward to seeing more. But they could have done many things differently to make a better first impression. The bits in Cintra were unbelievably boring.  Obviously crowbarred in there to set the whole Ciri thing up, but it detracts massively from the Blaviken story they chose to start with - and it's already presented as a really slow tale. Having it constantly interrupted by boring banquets just kills it stone dead.

 

Apart from setting up Ciri, the main reason for putting Cintra in the first episode is most likely to have a reason to show

Spoiler

a massive fantasy battle between two massive fantasy armies

as has been made fashionable by the LotR movies. To get some spectacle in there. Ironically, the last fight where Geralt cuts loose is umpteen times more impressive and memorable, so that bit in my spoiler was a big fat waste of budget.

 

Another weak aspect is that they took the impossible choice from the original Blaviken story and made sure everyone watching the show would understand. It spells it out constantly. Every 5 minutes or so they repeat "IT'S A CHOICE BETWEEN TWO EVILS" "THE LESSER EVIL" "THE CHOICE GERALT THE CHOICE" "OH NOES WHAT A CHOICE-A TO MAKE-A". The quest giver spells it out, Geralt explains it multiple times, and even the target herself explains it back to Geralt again a few times.

 

That's just understimating your audience and also a bit insulting. Worse, it makes the cool and interesting aspect of the original story very corny instead. Subtlety would work wonders here, hopefully the writers become more confident in later episodes. 

 

This has a lot of potential, and I loved plenty of things in the first episode, but these flaws stood out to me.

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I thought the first episode was pretty fantastic really. Good, gritty fantasy. Sword-play going on was superbly choreographed. Soundtrack was great and despite not having puss-peepers, Cavill makes a suitably decent Geralt.

 

Looking forward to seeing the rest now.

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18 minutes ago, choddo said:

Second episode pissed on the first one.


the avclub reviewer reckoned it improved in each episode. Having watched four, I think that’s probably the case.

 

(but even the early episodes have evocative scenery)

 

And at least the timelines are starting to come properly into focus now for a non book reader 

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I've finished the series and I feel like it's a remarkably faithful adaptation of content from the books, flaws and all.

 

Overall I really liked it. It definitely gets better as it goes along and I'm looking forward to more. It's been a great end to the year for TV!

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Watched all 8 in the last 24 hours, having never read the books or playd the games.

 

Found it really good, the story interesting and the character building good, the constant cutting between time periods had me confused for a while, but once you start seeing more of them and working things out, it all seems to work, but does require a bit more concentration than I usually put into Grey's Anatomy :p

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55 minutes ago, iknowgungfu said:

Watching the first episode and I have no idea what the fuck is going on. 

 

Same. I've come to this with minor knowledge of the games. Having not read the books. As far as I can ascertain Cavill growls through the thing, then there's a woman who wants to kill a guy and a young chatty girl, and the girl who wants to kill the guy and the guy who wants her dead..hmm. it just lacks any impact.

 

It's grey and uninspiring and has a strange pace to it.

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I’m up to episode 7 now, and I’ll be honest, the story structure feels like a fucking mess. I had no real idea until maybe episode 6...

 

Spoiler

That the story was jumping around in time. Maybe I’m dumb but it’s just doesn’t seem clear enough that it’s doing that. It’s made me realise why there was what felt like a huge gap in Yenefer’s progress to a powerful mage. Some of the actors also have quite bland, unmemorable faces and it’s taken me more than a while to realise they’re the same characters and not different ones. Christ, I can’t be this dense! :blink2: :lol:

 

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I finished episode 4 last night and did finally realize how it was jumping around time wise- haven't been in this thread though.

 

I agree re some of the dialogue lacking in subtlety but overall it's not too shabby, I  thought that his would be a bit shit  when I heard the premise- played about 10 hours of the Witcher 3 and wasn't sold so it's a welcome surprise. The missus likes it and she missed the 1st episode too so it must be doing something right.

 

Alternating between this and Narcos Season 2 at the moment - feel quite spoiled TBH

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Have only seen the trailer so far, but what’s this weird trend in movies or tv shows of the past few years to have sword fighters go into battle with a sword held pommel up, blade pointing behind the person wielding it, then sweeping it up to counter a blow? It’s been kind of entertaining for how insane it drives fencers who see it online, as the move makes no fucking sense whatsoever, but has left me dying to know how this baffling manoeuvre became fashionable. 

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6 hours ago, Monkeyboy said:

I’m up to episode 7 now, and I’ll be honest, the story structure feels like a fucking mess. I had no real idea until maybe episode 6...

 

  Hide contents

That the story was jumping around in time. Maybe I’m dumb but it’s just doesn’t seem clear enough that it’s doing that. It’s made me realise why there was what felt like a huge gap in Yenefer’s progress to a powerful mage. Some of the actors also have quite bland, unmemorable faces and it’s taken me more than a while to realise they’re the same characters and not different ones. Christ, I can’t be this dense! :blink2: :lol:

 

I noticed in episode 3, which all but spelled it out:

Spoiler

First during the meeting of important wizards and witches, queen Calanthe is mentioned abd talked about as if she was still alive. And as if the Nilfgaard attack on Cintra had not yet happened. She died in episode one during said attack.

 

The most obvious hint was when Geralt was investigating the old palace on behest of middle-aged fat king Foltest. There he sees a painting of Foltest and his sister as little kids.

In the very next scene (iirc) during the ballroom bit in Yennefer's storyline, they explicitly introduce Foltest and his sister to someone - they're still little kids and look identical to the painting. Which suggests a 40 or 50 year gap between those two storylines.

I do think it could have been made clearer though. Maybe with some text on-screen, "before" or the actual year. Or maybe not jump around between those storylines, three was pushing it imho because of all the shit they were introducing. I've played the games and read a few of the books, so I'm good to go. But I wondered whether it was a good idea to jump back and forth between three separate and so far unrelated storylines, while casually name dropping a bazillion fantasy cities, countries, characters, and historic events.

 

After the slow first episode, I'm really enjoying this a lot more though. Episodes 2 and 3 were fantastic (bar my above criticisms) and I'm really enjoying seeing the world of the Witcher come alive this way. Yennefer was brilliant imo, during that last reveal of episode 3 I was also like :blink2::o:wub:

 

 

Spoiler

Spoiler lol

 

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I'm still watching it mind. Got the timeline change from the Wizards ball and the " middle age fat king" (:D) being a little kad with his sister. 

 

I just think they should be hinting a little more where the timeline story threads are going.

 

It is making me consider playing Witcher 3 again as I only made it a few hours in or perhaps Skyrim.

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Loving this up to ep4 so far, Cavill is a great Geralt and really loves the role. 

 

Having read all the books and played all the games I was worried this wouldn't live up but they've done a very good job although I mostly agree with some of the criticisms above. I suppose a few of them are down to trying to exposit a bit to people new to the world and characters. 

 

Hope it gets a few more quid on the budget. 

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3 eps in and quite enjoying it, even though it looks cheap AF on occasion. Love the mood of it, Cavill is brilliant and the action scenes are surprisingly well done and brutal. 

 

Not so impressed with the godawful song at the end of ep 2 which was hideously embarrassing and sounded like a children's TV theme tune, and "Triss" is terrible - she should not look like Maeby Funke.

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Yeah it's a solid show that I feel will get better over future seasons. The casting is really good, the guy playing Dandelion is great. 

 

The main weakness is some of the dialogue is a bit meh and it struggles with not explaining things properly at times - someone not familiar with the games or books might be a bit lost. 

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