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The Basilisks From The Witcher Season 2 Explained

Season 2 of Netflix's "The Witcher" adaptation was released on December 17, and, at the time of writing, it currently sits at the top of the streaming service's Top 10 list. It feels safe to say fans are already eating up the newest batch of episodes. At the end of Season 1, Geralt of Rivia (Henry Cavill) is badly wounded and on the brink of death. Thankfully, a merchant comes by to help. As he grapples with hallucinations of his mother and his childhood years, Geralt is able to recover. Then, as fate would have it, he comes face to face with Princess Ciri (Freya Allan), who he must care for, as dictated by the Law of Surprise.

Of course, Season 2 brings along other familiar faces like Yennefer of Vengerberg (Anya Chalotra) and Jaskier (Joey Batey), a bard. But "The Witcher" wouldn't quite be "The Witcher" without a myriad of deadly monsters for Geralt to hunt down — Season 2 arguably brings even more creatures into the mix. Several of the new monsters are straight from "The Witcher" books by Andrzej Sapkowski and the CD Projekt Red's video games of the same name (via Esquire). However, you may recognize one fanged foe from the popular culture outside of "The Witcher" franchise.

The basilisk is a massive, serpent-like beast on The Witcher Season 2

One of the monsters mentioned heavily throughout Season 2 is the basilisk, a creature that comes from the same reptilian species as dragons and dracolizards within the world of "The Witcher" (via "The Witcher" wiki). While Geralt doesn't explicitly fight a basilisk in the novels penned by Andrzej Sapkowski, he does come across one in "The Witcher 3" video game (via "The Witcher" wiki).

The basilisk is a mythological creature that can be found most prominently in Medieval-era bestiaries (via Smithsonian Magazine). According to legend, the basilisk is a cross between a snake, rooster, and dragon and is extremely deadly. One of its earliest accounts is in Pliny the Elder's Natural History, written during the Roman Empire, and describes the creature as so venomous "it kills bushes not only by its touch but also by its breath." You may have also heard of basilisks in pop culture, especially in video games. It appears in "Final Fantasy 10," "World of Warcraft," and "Old School RuneScape." And, of course, any "Harry Potter" fan will recognize the name of this being as the huge serpent that guards the Chamber of Secrets.

The basilisk makes an appearance in "The Witcher" Season 2, Episode 8, "Family" (via IMDb). But, as the Witchers of Kaer Morhen know, this creature is some kind of variant from the one we've heard about in other fantasy fiction and mythology. On the Netflix show, the beasts have raptor-like arms complete with razor-sharp claws, both dragon scales and spiky feathers, and venomous spit. With these lethal qualities, the basilisks certainly provide a bit of a fight against Geralt and the other Witchers.