This article contains major The Witcher spoilers.
The Witcher‘s first season certainly wasn’t all it could be, but the series’ debut did offer a few fascinating moments and intriguing plot threads that suggest better adventures are ahead. It all leads up to an eventful finale filled with chronological confusion, emotional meetings, devastating departures, and a massive battle that hints at what the show’s production budget is capable of.
Whether you walked away from that finale with unanswered questions or you’re just looking for a safe space to discuss some of the shocking spoilers that occur during the series most action-packed episode, here’s a breakdown of some of the most notable events of The Witcher‘s ending.
The Timelines Converge
The Witcher’s use of crisscrossing timelines is one of its more frustrating and fascinating aspects. While the series’ chronological hopping allows it to cover a lot of ground, there are times when it’s hard to tell when certain events are occurring in relation to others.
Thankfully, The Witcher‘s first season finale clearly brings most of the show’s stories and characters together at last. In case you’re wondering, it feels like the earliest events in the show deal with the start of Yennefer’s origin story. Next are Geralt’s earlier exploits (and the events that led to him becoming the Butcher of Blaviken) which seem to occur around the same time as Yennefer’s magical training. Things become a little more clear at that point when Geralt invokes the “Law of Surprise,” and essentially claims the unborn Ciri as his future ward, which happens before we see Yennefer and Geralt meet and share some adventures.
We then experience Nilfgaard’s attack on Cintra (and Ciri’s escape), which, of course, leads to Ciri’s adventures throughout the show. The events of Ciri’s travels, Geralt’s split with Jaskier, and Yennefer’s decision to help in the battle against Nilfgaard then all happen before we reach the season’s final episode, which we’ll take a look at below.
Ciri and Geralt Finally Meet
One of the earliest plot seeds that The Witcher plants is the idea that Ciri and Geralt are “destined” to meet. This is initially presented as a matter of fate, but we eventually learn through flashbacks that it’s a little more complicated than that due to the aforementioned “Law of Surprise” and Geralt’s rightful “claim” to Ciri (should he choose to invoke it).
Regardless, The Witcher‘s season finale sees an escaping Ciri be taken in by a friendly woman living a simple life in the country. This oasis from the horrors she has experienced proves to be much more than that when we learn that the woman who took Ciri in is married to the man who helped save Geralt’s life after Geralt was poisoned in an effort to save Ciri from the battle that he mistakenly believed she was caught in (more on that later).
After a bit of confusion that follows this surprising turn of luck, Ciri and Geralt finally meet in a nearby forest. During that long-awaited encounter, Ciri asks “Who’s Yennefer?” after Geralt invokes that name. While that’s a perfectly reasonable question considering that those two characters haven’t had the chance to meet yet, fans of the show may be left asking the far more pertinent question “Where is Yennefer?”
Before we dive into what Yennefer is up to, let’s take a look at the circumstances of the battle that serves as the effective climax of many of The Witcher‘s first season storylines.
As we learn earlier in the season, the kingdom of Nilfgaard is leading a massive invasion that viewers first become aware of when we watch them launch a devastating attack against Cintra (which forces Princess Ciri to leave her home and eventually meet Geralt). During The Witcher’s season finale, that invasion results in what is referred to as the Battle of Sodden Hill: a turning point for what will eventually be known as the First Northern War.
A few things of note happen in this battle, but some of the most important events involve the various magic users in the series. See, the forces united against Nilfgaard have quite a few sorcerers and sorceresses on their side, but Nilfgaard boasts that assistance of a woman named Fringilla. As we saw in an earlier episode, Fringilla was sent to Nilfgaard after Yenneffer managed to seduce her way out of that particular assignment.
As it turns out, Fringilla has a pretty “loose” view on some of the other rules that other magic users in this land follow, which has seemingly allowed her to utilize a variety of disturbing (yet undeniably powerful) abilities. The use of these abilities helps turn the Battle of Sodden Hill in Nilfgaard’s favor. We see quite a few sorcerers and sorceresses united against Nilfgaard either die or suffer serious injuries during the battle.
It’s around that time that Yennefer shows up and does something quite dramatic.
Yennefer’s Last Stand
In a moment of seeming desperation during the Battle of Sodden Hill, we see Yennefer seemingly lose control (or gain control, depending on your perspective) as she unleashes a rain of fire on the army of Nilfgaard and forces them to withdraw their attack. It seems to be a relatively clean ending to what has been a devastating battle that Nilgaard was on the verge of winning.
However, it’s not quite that simple. Throughout The Witcher, we are told that the use of magic in this world often comes at the cost of something else. It’s all a bit complex, but it results in a kind of magical fuel referred to as “chaos.” Like a magic bar in a video game, every magic-user in this land seemingly has access to a finite amount of chaos (or at least a mana pool that must be drawn from slowly). We even see a sorcerer during the battle basically deplete his chaos and lose his life during a fight because of it.
Working off that logic, it’s highly doubtful that Yennefer would be able to perform such a devastating attack without expelling all of her chaos. Actually, it’s highly doubtful that she would be able to perform such an attack without tapping into a power reserve that goes beyond that. That idea is largely confirmed in the aftermath of Yennefer’s attack which sees some characters present at the battle (or, at least in Geralt’s case, envisioning the end of the battle via a dream) call out for Yennefer without ever finding her.
So where is Yennefer? Well, unless the show is going to veer wildly from the events of the stories it’s based on, we don’t think that she’s dead. While those same stories may offer a look (wink, wink) at what happens next, let’s assume that the show might differ slightly from the events of the books. If that’s the case, then it feels safe to assume that Yennefer’s actions will lead to devastating consequences for herself, the world, or perhaps even both.
Geralt Is Saved by His…Mom?
There are a few lingering plot threads during The Witcher’s finale that occur outside of the events described above, and the most intriguing of those loose ends is certainly what happens between Geralt and what appears to be his mother.
After Geralt is bitten by a monster that wields an incredibly deadly poison, he begins to suffer “fever dreams” that see him veer in and out of reality and his current timeline. During those dreams, we’re treated to what seems to be a look at his childhood and the events that led to his mother abandoning him so that he may begin to undergo the training required to become a witcher.
Well, imagine our surprise when we see present-day Geralt meet a woman named Visenna who seems to be his mother. What’s odd is that his mother has apparently not aged a day. She also seemingly utilizes magic while treating Geralt’s wounds, which really just raises a whole new series of questions.
While Geralt’s state of mind may lead you to doubt whether or not any of that is really happening, it certainly seems like Geralt does indeed meet his mom and that she is, in fact, a sorceress of some kind. Given that most of the magic users we’ve seen in this show have seemingly abandoned their ability to have children, it’s not entirely clear how she was able to have Geralt and use her magic too.
It’s likely that this story will be explored more during The Witcher’s second season.
Where is Jaskier?
After Geralt (quite rightfully) tells off the chronically annoying bard known as Jaskier for his part in many of the misadventures that have befallen the duo thus far, we don’t really see or hear from Jaskier again.
So where is he? That’s a great question. Nobody really mentions him after his departure, and there’s no implication that he has a role to play in any of the major events that occur at the end of the season.
It’s possible that the show is simply done with the character, but given his prominence and the nature of his on-screen departure, it’s not likely the case. How, exactly, he returns to the show is going to depend on whether or not the series ends up following the books to the letter as it concerns the fate of particular characters.
Triss Comes and…Goes?
Triss Merigold is a beloved favorite character amongst fans of The Wither books and games, but you’re forgiven if you don’t really remember her from her time in the show.
We first see Triss during The Witcher’s third episode when she talks to Geralt about curing the striga. Interestingly, she isn’t actually introduced in the book series until much later, but it seems that the show’s writers wanted to find a way to get her some screen time during the first season.
We don’t see Triss again until the season finale when it appears that she may have been killed during the Battle of Sodden Hill. While we highly doubt that she actually died given the character’s popularity and importance, you can bet that her fate will play a major part in the show’s second season. The fact that she was introduced ahead of schedule would also seem to suggest that Triss may be one of those characters whose role is expanded upon in comparison to what we saw her do in the books