When Castlevania was announced back in 2017, I was surprised to see a video game property getting a television show. Usually, video games became movies like Mortal Kombat or Doom. Who knew that this was a sign for times to come, now we have Detective Pikachu and Sonic The Hedgehog. Even with all of the video game properties getting motion pictures or television adaptations, Castlevania has been a constant source of interest to this day. The first season marked one of the first commercial animations for adults made in the west. Its focus on being real 2D animation was a roadblock that Netflix overcame and has allowed the show to continue into its third season.
I was not planning on rewatching the first two seasons of Castlevania, but it just kind of happened. Since the first season debuted three years ago, it might have been a happy accident that I received this refresher course before jumping into the latest addition. The first two seasons were famously repurposed from an old movie script, so this marks the first outing without an established roadmap. This change-up is immediately felt as the show’s structure has come to resemble a traditional television show. There is a lot of switching between characters and multiple plot lines going on at once. So now that season 3 has a full ten episodes and has switched over to actually being Tv, does the quality of the show stay the same?
Castlevania continues to be some of the best television you can watch. I am infatuated with how it tells its story. The dedication to characters, their progression, and development push the show to punch above its weight. It works because I’m interested in these people; they feel true to themselves and have to work towards their goals. The groups in which they have been separated also helps their best traits to be put on display. Having Trevor and Sipha together is cute and charming, while Issac being by himself is enthralling. This allows the viewer not only to follow multiple people but to explore more of the world that has been mostly absent. It seems that everything included so far has been in service of building foundations for what’s to come next.
Just like all great things, there are a couple of hiccups that occasionally disrupt the flow of what is a terrific show. Some of the character’s stories are a little more obvious than others, draining the tension from their situations. Two characters are plagued by poor dialogue that never seems to land. Thankfully, all of that is in the minority as Castlevania earns every minute that is on display.
There is never a situation that feels forced and never makes you wonder why you’re watching something. This accomplishment extends to action sequences as well; you would think that a show about monster hunters in a world full of vampires and demons would make any excuse for fights to break out. The measured approach paces these scenes, so they feel monumental each time they happen. With the culmination of the last two episodes, the show rewards you with an action-packed finale that rocks a small town and your world.
I hope Castlevania gets a fourth season gets to continue until the creators find an ending that they find satisfying. I will be along for the ride until the end, as the show continues to be a pleasure. Its wit and humor mix perfectly with the dark despair that permeates throughout the story it tells. The show should be at the top of people’s watchlist as there isn’t anything quite like it.