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The Glaring Witcher Problem Some Fans Can't Help But Notice

Despite the overwhelming popularity of Netflix's fantasy drama series "The Witcher," which is based on the book series (and video game series) of the same name, the critical response to the TV show hasn't been all roses. Fans and critics alike praised the first season for its subversion of typical fantasy tropes and gripping action sequences, but criticized the series for its confusing story structure and overly emotionless lead character, Geralt of Rivia (Henry Cavill). These issues were rectified in Season 2, which featured a much more streamlined storyline and a more empathetic main character, who spends much of the second season mentoring his "child of surprise" Ciri (Freya Allan). 

However, though the second season received remarkably more positive reviews from critics, die-hard fans still criticized the series for not staying faithful to the books or video games.

All told, there is a lot to love about Netflix's "The Witcher," but the series is far from perfect. Indeed, there is one specific problem in the series that fans cannot seem to let go of — no matter how minor said problem truly is.

Fans think the CGI dragon in Season 1 is poorly designed

Fans on Reddit have made it abundantly clear that they absolutely despise the CGI dragon featured in the episode "Rare Species." The episode sees Geralt, Yennefer (Anya Chalotra), and Jaskier (Joey Batey) joining a group of traveling adventurers on a quest to slay a dragon. Things take a turn when Geralt and Yennefer discover that the dragon they're searching for is dead, but that it was carrying the egg of a golden dragon named Villentretenmerth -– who appears before them and asks them to help protect the egg.

Fans of the series have asserted that the CGI dragon not only looks horrendous but also completely misses the mark on what Villentretenmerth should look like. "The special effects are great, except in that episode," wrote u/TheRealWonkoTheSane on Reddit. "The dragons look stunted." Another Redditor also observed that, in their words, "the dragon looks and sounds terrible."

Others emphasized how the dragon's design makes it seem unoriginal and bland, and not at all how the golden dragon from the books was described. "IMO it's more of a design problem than a CGI one," wrote u/GunterOdim. U/Vierdix expanded upon this, lamenting, "the worst part about it is that it looks like random wyvern rather than proud golden dragon like he was described in books which is very sad." 

It's clear that fans have a serious problem with the CGI dragon in Season 1, not only because it looks bad, but because it misrepresents the pride and grandeur that made Villentretenmerth so powerful in the book.

Netflix's Villententremerth lacks the legendary status of his book counterpart

Though the episode "Rare Species" is adapted from the short story "The Bounds of Reason," the series adaptation of Villentretenmerth could not be more dissimilar from his book counterpart. Villentretenmerth in the books is a dragon of legendary status, and is one of only two golden dragons in history to have lived within The Continent. Villentretenmerth is described as a living legend In the book — a massive, regal, and incredibly powerful dragon whose very existence ought to be impossible, since the golden dragon is a mutant like Geralt himself (via the The Official Witcher Wiki). The smaller, bird-like creature we see in the series is nothing at all like this legendary figure from the book, and as such, Villentretenmerth's appearance is incredibly underwhelming.

Not only does the Netflix adaptation miss the mark on Villentretenmerth's overwhelming sense of power and status,, but the creature they show isn't technically a dragon at all. By definition, the creature is actually a wyvern – as it has just two legs and a pair of wings. "The only problem with the dragon is that it actually reminded me about Geralt mocking villagers who [mistook a] wyvern with a dragon," wrote u/jacob1342. 

To be fair, "The Witcher" isn't the first major fantasy series to make this mistake. By this same criteria, as pointed out by NME, the dragons in "Game of Thrones" are also wyverns, rather than true dragons.

Nonetheless, while viewers loved the "Game of Thrones" dragons (aka wyverns), it's clear that fans have a huge problem with Villentretenmerth's depiction within the show, not only because of his blatantly erroneous design, but also because the adaptation fails to capture the legendary status of this mythical golden dragon.