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The Witcher Fans Are Struggling To Take Showrunner Lauren Hissrich At Her Word

Being a die-hard fan of the prolific fantasy series "The Witcher" can be a tough gig. Though fans may not have suffered as much as those who have waited over a decade for "The Winds of Winter" to be released (come on, George), "The Witcher" has had its own trials since becoming adapted for Netflix.

Despite showrunner Lauren Hissrich's insistence that the confusing timeline of "The Witcher" Season 1 was necessary, many fans had trouble following along. And though she promised Season 2 would be more straightforward, it wasn't without its controversies — fan-favorite character Eskel (Basil Eidenbenz) got the short end of the Leshen stick. Plus, the season was also paired with a strange anecdote where Geralt of Rivia himself, Henry Cavill, was compelled to change the death scene of his beloved horse, Roach (via Polygon).

Now, with news that Liam Hemsworth will be the new Witcher following Season 3, Hissrich is under more pressure than ever before.

Henry's Geralt will reportedly have the send-off he deserves

It is no easy task to recast a lead character in any series, especially one such as Henry Cavill who brought immense passion to the role of Geralt. But even though the original actor is leaving at the end of Season 3, Lauren Hissrich promised it would be a send-off worthy of the character.

"Henry has given so much to the show and so we want to honor that appropriately," the showrunner told Entertainment Weekly. The writers have deviated from the source material in the past, but Hissrich claims Season 3 will not be taking that approach this time. She went on to explain: "What is so interesting is that season 3, to me, is the closest thing that we've done as a one-to-one adaptation of the books. Obviously, we can't do every page, but 'Time of Contempt' gave us so many big action events, plot points, defining character moments, huge reveals of a big bad. There's so much to do that we were able to stick really, really closely with the books." 

Watchers of the series have been fans of Geralt since his introduction in Andrzej Sapkowski's books and the video game "The Witcher III: The Wild Hunt," which also blasted the character into popularity. And as much as viewers would love to believe that the series is finally honoring its roots, they have been burned too many times before.

The Witcher has not always stayed true to the books

In the past, fans realized that claims from Lauren Hissrich should come with a grain of salt. Before the first season of "The Witcher," the showrunner promised that story would always be the priority of the writers. But as seasons progressed, it became less clear if she meant Andrzej Sapkowski's vision or her own. One of Hissrich's most notable Season 2 claims proved false in retrospect.

"It would be a straight translation of the books," Hissrich told IGN about her seven-year plan. "I think there's just so much material that I don't feel the need to start inventing my own to keep it going." Even a cursory look at Season 2 proves that the reality doesn't fall in line with these statements. Yennefer (Anya Chalotra), one of the most accomplished mages, never loses her powers in the books as she does in the TV series. Season 2 is a painful and arduous journey of Yennefer going as far as to willingly sacrifice Ciri (Freya Allan) when in the source material, she is her surrogate mother. Redditors doubt Season 3 will impress.

"I mean, given seasons one and two, this is an extremely low bar," posted u/AnotherSoftEng. "They'd literally have to do just one or two things accurately." Optimism is in short supply. Redditors such as u/Janus_Grayden have been burned out on the series, saying: "They've gone so far off track in a number of critical ways that I don't see how it's even possible."

A Time of Contempt is not a great time for Geralt

If fans want to see a heroic send-off for Henry Cavill's Geralt, "Time of Contempt" may not be the best source material for his final season. Book readers will know that the second novel in Andrzej Sapkowski's "Witcher" catalog does not end well for the man. Redditors noted that a faithful adaptation would not be entirely heroic for Geralt.

"Her true adapting will have Geralt break Dijkstra's leg before losing his fight with Vilgefortz, and he'll lose the fight so badly his face will get messed up and he'll become Liam Hemsworth," joked u/OneSmallHuman. This is not entirely off base, considering how "Time of Contempt" ends. Geralt's battle with Vilgefortz is inspired by a coup. The sorcerer demands Geralt take a side, but as we all know about our laconic Witcher, he prefers to remain neutral. This forces a violent encounter where Geralt loses brutally, sustaining wounds in battle. There is no argument that Geralt has to win every fight, but it isn't exactly the empowering ending you would expect.

If Hissrich is truly sticking to the source material of the book, it may not be as triumphant for Cavill's Geralt as fans could hope. Redditor u/insanity concluded that there is only one way to correct the missteps of previous seasons, saying: "Geralt wakes up in Kaer Moren. At breakfast tells Eskel and all the others the craziest dream he just had. They all laugh it off and carry on."