Netflix’s The Witcher Casts King Henselt for Season 2

The Witcher Netflix series has become quite a phenomenon in recent memory. Fans of the game and book series as well as those who gush over medieval fantasy absolutely lauded the first season. The show perfectly captured the essence of the characters and world while satisfying the masses that just came off the absolute dud of a finale from Game of Thrones. With a promised seven seasons for the show comes news on castings for characters both unknown and very familiar to fans that toss coins to all Witcher content.

The second season, according to Redanian Intelligence, has cast relatively unknown actor Edward Rowe in the role of King Henselt, ruler of Kaedwen. Fans of The Witcher game series will recognize the name from a major player from CD Projekt Red’s The Witcher 2: Assassins of Kings. In the game, Henselt is a prideful king with a taste for watching duels, warmongering, and hedonism. The player assuming the role of Geralt of Rivia has the choice of ending the king while on his literal high horse or manipulate him until the events of the next game however the show has something more in store for this tyrannical monarch.

Image Via Redanian Intelligence

In the past, Laura S. Hissrich the showrunner has clarified that the entirety of the show takes place before the events of the first Witcher game. The series will then explore Henselt’s origin story relating to the heroic trio of Geralt, Yennifer, and Ciri before becoming the boisterous king many gamers chose to execute. Perhaps he earns kingship while interacting with Geralt or he’ll possibly arrange for Geralt to fight in a duel against a neighboring kingdom leading him down a path toward eventual tyranny. The possibilities for the directions of the show can go just about anywhere and it just seems to spell excitement every step of the way until release.

Image Via Steam Community

After a slew of production halts from Covid-19 outbreaks to on-set injuries, it’s nice to finally have some good news about everyone’s new favorite fantasy epic. As usual fans and newcomers can rejoice at the effort put forth to ensure the most enthralling and bloody tales from Nilfgaard. The best content from a sprawling franchise like The Witcher comes from creators who are just as big of fans as the readers or gamers of the series. The inclusion of fan-favorite characters should spark piquing interest in the other parts of media the franchise inhabits as well as clarity on the denizens that live in the witching world. Should any production halts cease at once you can toss a coin to your favorite witcher on August 17th, 2021.

Stories of Quarantine: Boccaccio’s ‘The Decameron’

There is a 700 year old book that has recently been gaining popularity among readers. 14th century Italian writer, Giovanni Boccaccio, wrote “The Decameron” as a way of compiling a series of stories set during the Black Death of 1348.  What about this book is so popular now, you may ask?

image via amazon

In order to understand why, Professor Martin Marafioti of Pace University talks about the book and its relevance now compared to a few months or years ago.  The book title itself stands for “Ten Days,” and as said before, it is a series of stories surrounding the time of the Black Death. Boccaccio tells a story of ten young people residing in northern Florence, Italy, who are facing the difficulties of the plague like many other people. The ten people get together and strategize on the best way to deal with the epidemic illness.


The group knows that it would be best to stay away from other people, but since they lived in such a densely populated city, doing so would be difficult.  After deliberating, they all decided that it would be the best for all of them to leave the city and take shelter in the countryside.  After the group physically leaves both the city and the plague behind them, they now faced another problem: passing time.  After thinking about what they could do, they agreed that something fun to do would be to tell stories.  Like we are doing now with the coronavirus pandemic, finding ways to amuse ourselves while we are quarantined at home like the group of young people in Boccaccio’s book tried to do in their own quarantine.

image via wikipedia

Their rule as this: each story teller would recount only one story per day. Some of the stories are funny, some of them are tragic, some were set in contemporary times, and others were set in the distant past. Even though “The Decameron” is 700 years old, the book has become relevant over and over again through the centuries because of not only the story but the way in which Boccaccio tells the story.  The book has been read, published, and made more widely available during periods of epidemic outbreak. Wonder why? Professor Marafioti had this to say:


“Bocaccio’s formula, his idea of storytelling as distraction in times like this, is something that we continue to use over and over again in our lives.  It’s so important.  We’re doing the same thing now, in 2020, with the outbreak of coronavirus.  People are reaching out to their loved ones, they’re sending letters, they’re journaling, they’re sharing on social media.  So, in many ways, we’re doing the same thing that the young men and women in Bocaccio’s work were doing over 700 years ago.”



Now that’s really interesting.  Essentially, books, and even movies, whose main story circulates around diseases, becomes ever more relevant for those who find themselves in the same situation.  When art imitates reality (known as mimesis, by the way), we may be drawn to said art when we are in the same conditions.  We all want to find ways to escape, to find distraction.  I don’t know about you, but I definitely will be checking out Bocaccio’s book, as I too need some fun things to do while I’m at home. Happy reading!

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Featured image via Kobo

Canceled Film ‘Mouse Guard’ Posts Demo Reel, Showing Us What Could Have Been



The Mouse Guard movie is officially dead. Disney has scrapped Fox’s planned adaptation of the popular graphic novel series by David Petersen. There were hopes the project was just delayed or finding a new home, but alas, the project has officially been canceled. Director Wes Bell confirmed this sad news via Twitter:




While it’s a pity Mouse Guard won’t see the light of day, Petersen also shared some cool stuff that might have represented what the final movie could have looked like. Petersen celebrated the enormous effort the pre-production team had done for the movie in an i09 article in which he showcased sculptures, pre-production art, and the studio that would have been used. The demo reel made for the film was posted by Wes Ball on his YouTube channel, and it showcased what could have been.

While obviously incomplete and lacking any audio, the demo reel captures the feeling of the books excellently. Notable scenes from the demo reel include a showcase of the Mouse Guard society; multiple clashes between mice that feature cool, flashy choreography; and giant creatures such as turtles, crows, and snakes that almost function as dragons to the minuscule mice.

The screenwriter also lamented the project’s death and said so in a Tweet, in which he attached the ENTIRE SCREENPLAY online for anyone to read:



This is an incredible level of insight for a project that’s been canned. We can tell everyone attached to this was extremely passionate about Mouse Guard, and hopefully, someday, it can begin life again as a film adaptation. In the meantime, check out the demo reel below and see what could have been.

Featured Image Via IGN