The first season of ‘The Witcher’ was a lot of fun but quite a few people were wondering why Netflix only opted for an initial 8-episode order. It turns out, the first season’s length had nothing to do with what the streaming giant wanted but what showrunner Lauren S. Hissrich wanted to tell the story. On top of that, the framework for adapting Andrzej Sapkowski’s work was taken from how he had crafted the world in a mixture of short stories and longer works.
Hissrich explained in a recent Reddit Ask Me Anything:
“The number of episodes is based on the story we’re telling, our sense of what an audience will watch (and finish), and the budget. When you’re starting a show, and don’t know if it will be a success, more episodes generally means that you get to spend less money on every episode. So we knew we didn’t want to do that. Eight felt like the magic number.
We’re approaching S2 in a similar way we did with S1: what are the stories Sapkowski was telling, and why? What building blocks do we need to set up future stories? Is there anything we missed from S1 that we want to include? And what will work on television? For instance — no one wants to see Triss have diarrhea for three episodes. So what are we trying to glean from that in the books, and how do we present that onscreen?”
This means that the episode count will be up in the air and be influenced by which parts of the stories are being told. As the second season won’t have to deal with a potentially confusing timeline, the writing team will likely have more time to focus on the story and not how to tell three origin stories from different time periods all at once.
Are you looking forward to the second season of ‘The Witcher’? Do you feel that the first season should have been longer, or was 8-episodes the perfect amount for the narrative we’ve been given so far? Share your thoughts in the comments below!