Is The Witcher Season 3’s Controversial Opening Scene Faithful To The Books?

Explore the heated debate over The Witcher Season 3’s opening scene as the show’s book accuracy is questioned.

By Amitabh Mukherji
August 4,2023

The Witcher executive producer and writer Javier Grillo-Marxuach recently addressed the criticism surrounding season 3, episode 6’s opening scene, which had faced backlash for its alleged inaccuracy to the source material. This comes in the wake of ongoing scrutiny the show has endured for its lack of faithfulness to the original books. The controversy was further fueled when Henry Cavill, who plays Geralt, confirmed his exit from the show after season 3. One specific scene that came under scrutiny was when Dijkstra (played by Graham McTavish) pointed a knife at Geralt while he was relieving himself in a plant.

Grillo-Marxuach defended the scene, stating that it is indeed based on the books and even claimed to have proof to back up this assertion. However, some viewers continued to challenge this claim, sharing passages from the book that contradict the scene in question. One user shared a screenshot from the book highlighting that Geralt would never relieve himself in a plant and argued that Dijkstra would never be able to sneak up on Geralt. Despite these counterarguments, the writer did not respond to the tweet.

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The Witcher has faced continuous controversy regarding its departure from the original novel series written by Polish author Andrej Sapkowski. From the show’s convoluted timeline to Henry Cavill’s departure, the opening scene of season 3, episode 6, is just one instance of the changes made by the showrunners. Despite promises from writers and producers to remain faithful to the source material, viewers remain disappointed with the show’s deviations from the books.

Producers defend the changes, stating that some deviations from the source material may be necessary when adapting a work for a different medium like live-action television. The show’s low Rotten Tomatoes score of 22 percent for season 3 may suggest a grim future, but the creators continue to stand by their decisions. These changes can allow for the expansion of main characters’ backstories and add complexity and depth to their journeys.

Balancing Faithfulness And Adaptation

The Witcher Season 3 

Although The Witcher season 3 still maintains more fidelity to the source material compared to previous seasons, its controversial changes remain a point of contention among fans. While certain key events in the show align with the books, the show’s deviation from the original formula raises questions about the balance between adaptation and loyalty to the source material.


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The Witcher Season 3

The debate surrounding The Witcher season 3, episode 6’s opening scene highlights the challenges of adapting a beloved book series for television. While the show’s creators defend their decisions as necessary for a live-action adaptation, viewers’ disappointment with the deviations persists. Striking the right balance between staying faithful to the source material and making creative changes remains an ongoing challenge for any adaptation. As the season progresses, it will be interesting to see how the show navigates these criticisms and whether it can still satisfy both longtime fans and newcomers to The Witcher universe.