A lucky few have seen the first five episodes of Netflix’s upcoming fantasy epic The Witcher and the reviews reveal that The Witcher could be better than Game of Thrones. The series follows professional monster hunter, or ‘witcher’, Geralt of Rivia (Henry Cavill), sorceress Yennefer and princess Ciri trying to survive in a harsh and terrifying world. Netflix has a lot of faith in the series – they’ve already renewed it for a second season.
A thread on Reddit has rounded up early impressions of the series but we won’t see their full reviews until the embargo lifts on December 20th, the day of release. The reviewers are extremely positive towards Henry Cavill – @wWarstu said: “#HenryCavill Killed It Wow Best Casting Ever… Wait Until You Guys See It…”
Another user, @nerdy_basement said: “I second Cavill nailing Geralt. Voice. Body language. Broodiness. He’s captured it all. Loving it.”
There has also been a lot of praise of Anya Chalotra as Yennefer. Her casting was met with a very mixed reception due to her not resembling her counter-part in the video game The Witcher 3 but user @Wheeljack83 said:
I will admit I was very skeptical at first when Anya Chalotra was cast as Yennefer of Vengerberg in Netflix's The Witcher. I can now say she completely shattered whatever doubts I had. She gives everything to this role. #TheWitcherNetflix #TheWitcher #Netflix pic.twitter.com/XpvP2rIclm
— Jeffrey Harris (@Wheeljack83) November 26, 2019
Because The Witcher comes in the wake of the controversial conclusion to fantasy series Game of Thrones, comparisons have already started popping up in these early impressions and they’re in favor of The Witcher. Perhaps the most damning comes from @wWarstu again where he said that: “The Fight Scenes In #Witcher WOW Makes #GameofThrones Fights Look Awful – Watching The Witcher Season 1 This Weekend”
Another review said that “The fight scenes in The Witcher make Game of Thrones fight scenes look like two drunks fighting outside a bar.”
One reviewer also leaked the episode covers with the caption “The Witcher and it’s already so much better than Game of Thrones.”
Game of Thrones has often been praised for its fight choreography, so these are bold statements from the reviewers. The Witcher and Game of Thrones share stunt coordinator Vladimir Furdik, who is on-record praising Henry Cavill’s fighting skills. He said: “I don’t know any actors who are that good with a sword and fight scenes overall as Henry is.”
If early reviews and the general hype for The Witcher are anything to go by, The Witcher is set to become one of Netflix’s flagship shows. Are you looking forward to The Witcher? Let us know in the comments below!
Liam Mackay is a Scottish journalist who mostly plays RPGs and shooters. His gaming career started with the Bob The Builder game for the PS1 and he can now be found listening to film scores and raving about The Witcher and Fable 2.