The Witcher Showrunner Addresses Family-Friendly Series Critics

If you had a chance to check out what The Witcher star Henry Cavill had to say at this weekend's Tudum global fan event, then you know the franchise's universe will be expanding in some big ways. First, the main series was officially renewed for a third season, while behind-the-scenes early production footage for prequel series The Witcher: Blood Origin was screened. Along with that, it was revealed that a second anime feature film was on the way as well as an all-ages series for family viewing. But it was that last part that had some folks taking to Twitter to question whether a family-friendly series was keeping with the vision of "The Witcher" universe or more about extending the brand to bring in more consumers. Showrunner extraordinaire Lauren S. Hissrich responded to critics earlier today, arguing that while the franchise does have adult themes she also believes that they're themes with important lessons that can be presented with a younger viewer in mind. "I believe — STRONGLY believe — that the moral dilemmas and ethical grayness that adults love in this universe can be extrapolated to stories that kids in this chaotic world desperately need, and could benefit from," Hissrich wrote (and you can read her entire response below).

Image: Screencap

"I agree, 'The Witcher' is a dark, mature universe. I'd go further. It's controversial. Political. A microcosm of humanity, for all its goodness and evil. But I believe — STRONGLY believe — that the moral dilemmas and ethical grayness that adults love in this universe can be extrapolated to stories that kids in this chaotic world desperately need, and could benefit from.

I say this as the mom of an 8-year-old and a 10-year-old. They've begged me to watch the show. They can't. It's not appropriate, too mature and dark, as you say. But. If I can sit with them and watch a version they love, one they can laugh at, one they feel "gets them" and their small but meaningful place in the world — but that can also serve as a foundation from which to talk about big topics, racism, sexism, what it means to be a monster?

And how we can fight back against those bleak black holes of humanity, so everyone knows there's a place for them? Then I'm in. And yes, I hope this extends the brand viewership. I love 'The Witcher' world. And I want more people to love it, too, no matter their age. Don't you?"

The Witcher Season 2:
Image: Screencap

Now here's a look at some new scenes from the second season of The Witcher, where dangers (and questions) await: Geralt reconnects with his old friend Nivellen; and then, Geralt look to protect Ciri from a monster. Oh, and before you go? The Witcher was officially renewed for Season 3 (along with a second anime feature film, and a new Kids and Family series set in the world of The Witcher):

And here's an extensive look at where the series is heading with a new extended look with tons of Season 2 footage:

With the global phenomenon set to return to Netflix on December 17, here's a look at the official teaser for the second season of The Witcher:

"The Witcher" Season 2: Convinced Yennefer's life was lost at the Battle of Sodden, Geralt of Rivia brings Princess Cirilla to the safest place he knows, his childhood home of Kaer Morhen. While the Continent's kings, elves, humans and demons strive for supremacy outside its walls, he must protect the girl from something far more dangerous: the mysterious power she possesses inside.

We also have episode titles for Season 2: Episode 1 – 'A Grain of Truth"; Episode 2 – "Kaer Morhen"; Episode 3 – "What Is Lost"; Episode 4 – "Redanian Intelligence"; Episode 5 – "Turn Your Back"; Episode 6 – "Dear Friend"; Episode 7 – "Voleth Meir"; and Episode 8 – "[REDACTED]." Hmmm… here's a look at the episode announcement video:

And then we had a parade of behind-the-scenes featurettes covering a number of aspects of the production:

"Converging Destinies": The Witcher's Yennefer of Vengerberg and Princess Cirilla of Cintra experienced extraordinary changes and challenges in Season 1, but their evolution is only just beginning. Actors Anya Chalotra and Freya Allan look back at their characters' journeys so far, and preview what's in store for Season 2.

"Inside Kaer Morhen": Throughout its many portrayals in the games and on-screen, Kaer Morhen has long been the sanctuary of Geralt and his witcher brothers; but what's the history behind this ancient castle and its place in witcher mythology? Here's everything you need to know about the beloved home of the Wolf School!

The Witcher Showrunner Addresses Family-Friendly Series Critics

"Humans of the Continent Series": It takes a village to build the Continent. Meet the talented production crew who are responsible for bringing The Witcher to life behind the scenes, as they share their insights into their eclectic and sometimes surprising jobs.

"Humans of the Continent Series: Master Armourer" – Master Armourer Nick Jeffries takes us behind the scenes of the armoury department and some key weapons of the series

"Humans of the Continent Series: Puppeteers" – A very entertaining behind the scenes insight from the people in green behind the new and favourite monsters of The Witcher, from Matt Fraser and Dan Gregory.

"Humans of the Continent Series: Lens Tech" – A fascinating look at the intricate costume detail found in the depth of a stare, from lens technician Ashruti Patel

The Witcher
The Witcher offered early looks at the second season. (Image: Netflix)

Netflix's The Witcher season 2 welcomes Kristofer Hivju (Game of Thrones) as Nivellen, Kim Bodnia (Killing Eve) as Vesemir, Yasen Atour (Young Wallender) as Coen, Agnes Bjorn as Vereena, Paul Bullion (Peaky Blinders) as Lambert, Aisha Fabienne Ross (The Danish Girl) as Lydia, Adjoa Andoh (Bridgerton, Silent Witness) as Nenneke, Cassie Clare (Brave New World, The Bisexual) as Philippa Eilhart, Liz Carr (Silent Witness, Devs) as Fenn, Simon Callow (A Room with A View, Four Weddings and a Funeral) as Codringher, Graham McTavish (Outlander, Preacher) as Sigismund Dijkstra, Kevin Doyle (Downton Abbey, Happy Valley) as Ba'lian, Chris Fulton (Bridgerton, Outlaw King) as Rience, and newcomer Mecia Simson as Francesca.

The Witcher
Image: Screencap

Netflix's The Witcher stars Henry Cavill (Justice League), Anya Chalotra (The ABC Murders) as Yennefer, Freya Allan (The Third Day) as Ciri, Joey Batey (The War of the Worlds) as Jaskier, MyAnna Buring (Kill List) as Tissaia, Tom Canton (Good Karma Hospital) as Filavandrel, Lilly Cooper (Peterloo) as Murta, Basil Eidenbenz (Victoria) as Eskel, Jeremy Crawford (Titans) as Yarpin Zigrin, Eamon Farren (Twin Peaks) as Cahir, Mahesh Jadu (Marco Polo) as Vilgefortz, Terence Maynard (Cursed) as Artorius, Lars Mikkelson (House of Cards) as Stregobor, Mimi Ndiweni (Black Earth Rising) as Fringilla Vigo, Royce Pierreson (Judy) as Istredd, Wilson Radjou-Pujalte (Hunter Street) as Dara, Anna Shaffer (Harry Potter) as Triss Merigold, and Therica Wilson Read (Young Wallender) as Sabrina.

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About Ray Flook

Serving as Television Editor since 2018, Ray began five years earlier as a contributing writer/photographer before being brought onto the core BC team in 2017.
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