Over the course of the last few weeks, we’ve been getting a steady flow of new information from the sets of The Witcher, that is before the production was forced to halt due to Covid-19. While several of the show’s biggest stars such as Henry Cavill (Geralt), Anya Chalotra (Yennefer) and Freya Allan (Ciri) were spotted on location, another important character has been conspicuously absent from all the leaks: Joey Batey‘s gossipy bard Jaskier.
Since we’ve heard next to nothing about him, some have started to wonder whether he will have a much more reduced role in season two. We don’t think that will be the case.
Remember that many scenes so far have been shot in the secluded environments of Arborfield Studios, shielding the cast from any unwanted attention. More importantly however, we have learned something interesting, that could mean Jaskier’s character will be expanded in comparison to the books. Minor spoilers for the second season ahead!
Recently, we have heard that The Witcher has been looking to cast the Countess De Stael, a character set to appear in season two. Who is this countess and why does it matter? Simply: She is tied to Jaskier in the show and the books.
We have gotten a tiny bit of background information about her in the opening scene of episode five of the first season. While Geralt was fishing for a djinn, Jaskier mentioned that the Countess de Stael has left him again, which may have had something to do with the bard’s singing if the witcher is to be believed. Believing himself to be the djinn’s new master, Jaskier wished for the countess to ‘welcome him back with glee, open-armed and very little clothing’.
From that exchange alone, we know that the countess was once Jaskier’s lover, and the pair seem to have lived a rather stormy relationship, given that she left him multiple times (not unlike Geralt and Yennefer). While not much is known about the countess in the books, there is a passage in The Tower of the Swallow, stressing her importance to Jaskier (Dandelion in the English version) beyond the romantic part:
But as I well know, for you’ve often told me about it, you only began seriously rhyming and composing melodies when you were nineteen, inspired by your love for Countess de Stael.Geralt to Dandelion in The Tower of the Swallow
The countess does not appear as a character in the books, but we can assume she was an inspiration for Jaskier when he started out as a poet. A muse-like figure so to speak.
We currently don’t how if this new character will have a big part in the show, but her appearance may give us a look into the bard’s past, and hopefully further characterization beyond what we’ve seen so far. We also don’t yet know who will play her in the show, but we’ll be keeping an eye out. Stay tuned!
7 comments on “The Witcher to introduce an important character from Jaskier’s past”
Such a relief to hear something/anything related to Joey/Jaskier after all this time of leaks/spoilers but complete silence about him. Hopefully he really won’t be in even fewer eps in season 2.
Hmm…I’m wondering how all these spoilers we got will fit into an 8 episodes season. As long as the main trio gets the screen time and the character/relationship development they deserve I’m all for Jaskier getting a backstory. After the main three he was my most favorite character in s1 I can’t wait to see how this season will play out!!!
The countess appears in the books, but the more relevant of Jaskier’s lovers is of course Anna Henrietta, the Duchess of Toussaint, in the games wonderfully voiced by MyAnna Buring who plays Tissaia in the show. I wonder who will be chosen for that role. Since the Duchess is a cousin of Fringilla Vigo, the actress would probably be someone of color for consistency. But likely we won’t yet reach Toussaint during season 2.
Essi Daven or riot!!!
I wonder if they’ll do the Oxenfurt plot from BoE. If yes, then Countess de Stael could replace Shani in helping Geralt and Jaskier to locate Rience. I’d love to see Essi Daven too.
No way they are skipping Shani!! That would be a reason for not watching the show anymore. Even worse than skipping Phillipa, Margarita or Milva.
I loved s1 as an introduction to the continent but it was just the tip of the iceberg and I can’t wait to dig deeper to this rich world and its characters, their complicated relationships and the politics. And also to the introduction of other iconic characters from the later novels (Regis ftw) . I’m excited we’re getting something of Jaskier’s past (I wonder if his story will match that of Blood of Elves or if they’ll create something more for him in s2) and I’m super excited that Lauren Hissrich said in Twitter that she wants to explore Geralt’s pain and disability after the thanedd coup. That is what gives the characters more deapth and makes them more relatable. I’m sure Henry Cavill will kill it.