Netflix's breakout fantasy hit show The Witcher is gearing up to resume filming for the second season, which will see the previously separate worlds of the main characters Geralt, Ciri, and Yennefer collide as they explore their joint destinies. In an interview with series showrunner Lauren Schmidt Hissrich, she explained how Geralt of Rivia started out in the first season as a single-minded mercenary, and how season 2 will evolve that arc:
"One of the sort of internal conflicts, I think, in Geralt, is the desire to not get involved. I mean, from day one he's like, "I'm a neutral party. I don't want to be a part of this." And yet he can't help himself. ... And so what I think is fun in terms of Geralt as a protagonist is you have this external shell, which is this tough man who's walking through the world who is determined not to need anyone. He's there to do his job. He's there for money. That's all he cares about."
This portrayal of Geralt by actor Henry Cavill as a man who is only interested in getting paid is generally faithful to the roots of the character in the books and video games the series is adapted from. Hissrich goes on to explain that season two will go deeper into exploring how this purely mercenary attitude is a defense mechanism Geralt has put in place to avoid revealing there are things he cares about other than money:
"It's all protecting the sort of internal -- we call it his white knight syndrome -- his internal desire to be a hero and the sort of human emotions that he can't help but let filter through, even though he's determined to tell everyone that he doesn't have an emotional capacity. I think a lot of that conflict is fun to play, and it's kind of all going to explode in Season 2. All of the times that we saw him withhold, all the times that we saw Geralt sort of internalize things as opposed to externalize, in Season 2 he's going to be confronted with that a lot more and has to make some different choices."
While Geralt's character occasionally prevents audiences from being able to empathize with him due to his generally closed off and non-communicative nature, Ciri's character suffers due to the lack of focus on her backstory in the first season, something Hissrich states will be remedied in the upcoming season:
"We had much more of Ciri's story in Season 1 that we ended up having to trim down. And it's one of the things that when I look at the season, I see she's not as present, Ciri's not as present as I would have liked her to be. So in Season 2, we're really digging in with her character and we're going to understand her a lot more. And yes, that growth that you're describing, where she starts training, where she actually becomes the character that we know from the books and later from the video games, we will see her become that person. But she doesn't change on a dime. What we don't want to do is forget where she came from."
This insight into The Witcher Season 2 was first shared on TVGuide.com.