The Witcher has had an odd pop culture path. Best known in America as a video game franchise, Andrzej Sapkowski’s fantasy series has a cult following both in and outside his native Poland for its cynical tone, historical allegory, and dark comedy. Which is an intimidating mix for any TV show, but Netflix seems to be going for it.
Netflix has picked up the rights to Sapkowski’s series of stories and novels following Geralt, the “witcher” of the title. Despite the name, Geralt’s job is as a sort of magical exterminator in a medieval fantasy setting; if there’s a dragon, a ghost, or a goblin eating your crops (or your family), Geralt will kill it off, provided you have the gold. Witchers, in the vein of worldly-wise wizards, tend to be “poor in coin but rich in sense,” an ongoing theme in the series, and the stories have a bit of an O. Henry-esque edge to them, used to either comic or tragic effect.
Considering that the series sometimes rather explicitly touches on Polish politics, especially the travails of the country during World War II, it’ll be curious to see how they’ll tackle it. But we’ll see soon enough, as Netflix is actively developing the show.