To Binge or Not to Binge Episode 68: ‘The Witcher’


Hannah Allred

(Graphic by Hannah Allred | The Daily Utah Chronicle)

By Arielle Gulley, Arts Writer


While everyone seems to have given up on Netflix since the platform announced losses of popular movies and shows such as “Friends,” I am here to reassure you that there are still shows available on Netflix that make it worth renewing your subscription. The most recent gem I’ve found has been one of the platform’s newest original series, “The Witcher.” Based on the video game and book series of the same name, the show is a fantasy depiction of a medieval world filled with magic, witches and monsters.

In this fictional world, witchers are mutated beings with special skills who are known for hunting monsters. The series features Geralt of Rivia (Henry Cavill), a witcher who thrives in solitude and maintains little faith in society. While I think the show is great and am glad I watched it, I will be completely honest and say that the fact that Cavill was featured in the series was my main motivation for watching it in the first place. I had never heard of the video game before, and typically fantasy dramas are not my cup of tea. Do you know what is my cup of tea though? A shirtless Cavill fighting magical bad guys and soaking in hot tubs.

Although my motives were shallow and I only started the show for the eye candy, I stayed for the storyline. You have Geralt, this seemingly harsh man who is so genuine and kind but also very emotionally distant. While he tries his best to keep to himself, he is constantly being dragged into life-threatening situations and making friends along the way. He’s able to form such strong relationships that continue to develop throughout the series.

There are multiple storylines throughout the first season and inevitably they all blend together seamlessly. The show jumps back and forth between current day and about 10 years in the past. Though the time jump ultimately serves as a way of developing characters and giving the viewer a more in-depth look into the story, it can be quite confusing at times. There are moments you will watch and be unsure of whether it is taking place in the past or current day, but perhaps that was the writer’s intent when making the show. It wasn’t until the final moment when all was said and done that I had a good grip on what was going on.

However, even with the added confusion, the writing was phenomenal. The characters are complex and loveable, while the storyline was refreshing and full of twists.


To Binge or Not to Binge? 

This show was my first binge of 2020. It came out of nowhere, and I did not expect it. I watched episode three with a friend of mine who started it, and I remember having no clue what was going on, but, at the same time, I needed to know what happened next. I would have watched it all in one sitting if it wasn’t for school and work encroaching on my Netflix time. I would recommend this one to binge for anyone who is a fan of fantasy drama television shows. I found it to be very similar to “Game of Thrones.” While the characters are dark and seemingly unremorseful in their actions, you still inevitably empathize and begin to root for them. 

The show’s storyline continuously evolves at a quick pace, and I found it easy to watch multiple episodes at once. The show has scenes filled with witty banter and lighthearted moments that help keep the overall seriousness of the series from being too much to bear. The show was made to binge, but a fair warning would be not to watch too fast —  there is only one season so far. It has been renewed for a second season, but it will not be released until 2021.

Best Episode

While I recommend watching them all in order to keep from further confusion, a favorite of mine was episode six, “Rare Species.” It involves the characters all going on a search for a dragon egg and a lot of character development happens in those 60 minutes. It was a rollercoaster of emotions, and inevitably the story takes a pivotal turn in this episode.


Similar Shows

“Game of Thrones,” “Carnival Row,” “Shadow Hunters”  and “Arrow”


Trigger Warning

“The Witcher” includes nudity, adult language, death, sex, and scenes containing gore and gruesome acts. The content is extremely mature, similar to “Game of Thrones. “


“The Witcher”

5 out of 5 stars

Available on Netflix

8 episodes, 60 minutes each. Approximately 480 minutes total.


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