With the highly anticipated second season of The Witcher now available on Netflix, you might be looking for more shows like The Witcher to binge over the holidays. We are here to help.
The Witcher follows Geralt of Rivia, the titular Witcher, a wandering monster hunter whose fate is tied to the magical princess Cirilla (“Ciri”), whom he is sworn to protect. With timeline jumps and the emergence of the mysterious sorceress Yennefer, the paths of the three characters eventually meet in a fantasy adventure full of conflict.
So, what are the best shows like The Witcher? Read on for eight picks that might be right for you.
The wheel of time
Perhaps the biggest contender among shows like The Witcher, The Wheel of Time is Amazon’s bold and ambitious answer to shows like HBO’s Game of Thrones. Based on the novels by Robert Jordan and Brandon Sanderson, the series follows Moiraine, a member of an order of women with magical abilities. She accompanies a group of four young people on a journey to discover if one of them is the reincarnation of a powerful magic user who can save or end the world.
Another Amazon Prime Video original series, Carnival Row, sets its dark fantasy in a neo-noir reality, framing its story as a metaphor for immigration and xenophobia. Slightly closer to home than The Witcher, Carnival Row is set in an alternate Victorian London, where a human detective falls in love with a fairy fleeing her magical homeland.
The star-crossed lovers are threatened by a hostile environment, a serial killer on the loose and a government with little interest in protecting the most vulnerable.
Disney Plus’ flagship series, The Mandalorian, was the first live-action Star Wars series after the sequel trilogy. Like Geralt, the titular Mandalorian is a lone assassin in a world where justice is scarce. While a science fiction series may not seem like an obvious choice between shows like The Witcher, both series are based on westerns and samurai movies and feature strong, silent leads tasked with protecting an innocent younger character who is targeted by the bad guys. .
Just as Peter Jackson’s The Lord of the Rings redefined fantasy in the 2000s, HBO’s groundbreaking Game of Thrones set the tone for the genre in the 2010s. Much of The Witcher’s grittiness can be traced back to Game of Thrones, making the fantasy epic an easy pick as a show like The Witcher.
Based on George RR Martin’s famous novels, Game of Thrones follows the ongoing struggle to control the seven kingdoms of Westeros, with political intrigue, bloody strife and loyalties broken over eight breathtaking seasons.
Apple TV Plus’ See has some of the most overt allusions to samurai cinema I’ve seen in years. That puts it in competition with The Witcher, as both series draw on classic stories like Yojimbo and Lone Wolf and Cub. While See is set in the distant future, when humanity is almost completely blind and contains no fantasy elements, it shares these kinds of thematic and stylistic elements with the Netflix show. Both contain violent worlds where skilled warriors with dark pasts fight for what is right.
When a mysterious race of demons returns to haunt humans, three young heroes embark on a journey with the last of the Druids to protect an ancient, mystical tree that defends this realm from such threats. This young adult series has been canceled after two seasons, so sadly you’ll want more. It’s still well worth a look if you want more fantasy after The Witcher.
We’ve come a long way since the syndicated fantasy TV shows of the 90s. But some of them remain worth watching. The best of the bunch is easily Xena: Warrior Princess, in which Lucy Lawless plays the titular Xena. Xena travels through a fictional ancient Greece, a formidable warrior with a dark past, who atones for her sins by fighting for those in need against their various oppressors. The show developed a fierce cult following and continues to have a marked influence on fantasy shows like The Witcher.
One of Netflix’s lesser-known fantasy series, The Letter for the King is nonetheless ambitious and possesses solid talent. That includes Amir Wilson of His Dark Materials and motion-capture king Andy Serkis. A young squire is sent on a mission to deliver a secret message to the king of a fictional medieval people. The message could change the fate of the kingdom in this coming-of-age show like The Witcher.