The Witcher Season 2 premiered on Friday, and Henry Cavill is moving more comfortably in his costume this time around. Cavill plays the Witcher Geralt of Rivia, and famously does many of his own stunts and takes the staged combat very seriously. In an interview with JOE, costume designer Lucinda Wright explained the new modifications to Geralt's armor made in Season 2.
Wright said that she and Cavill collaborated on his new armor, ensuring that it looked familiar while making the improvements that both of them wanted to see. She said: "I met him for a sit down for an hour to hear what he thought about Season 1 and the armour. It was about how to, in my eyes, make him that killer. How to make him moveable. With Henry's body, all you need to do is just show it off really."
Wright said that she and Cavill worked up 8 new sets of armor for the titular Witcher in total. She said that having another season to work on this show allowed her to expand on the work that's been done before, saying: "With the principal characters, I didn't just come in and change it, I evolved it."
One signature part of Geralt's look across the whole Witcher franchise is that he wears his swords across his back and draws them over the shoulder — a common fantasy trope but a difficult maneuver to pull off in real life. Wright said that making this motion look natural was one of the biggest challenges of designing this armor.
"It was really important to me to remove it from the front and have it rigged it in at the back," she said. "We rigged it up so that it's tied on a buckle at the front, that it keeps the front clear and all the action is at the back. Henry can actually raise his arm and touch his sword, which was really important to him and me because in Season 1 his arm couldn't go any further because of the design."
Another major triumph this season was giving Geralt holsters for the magical elixirs he uses, both in and out of combat. Wright said: "When I met Henry I said, 'Where do your elixirs come from?' and he said 'They came out of nowhere,' so I said 'Why don't we make something?' Henry said 'Why not something on my leg?' So we made a contraption. I kept the studding as I wanted to keep some links to the first season's armor."
The Witcher is a fantasy series with a medieval aesthetic, though it incorporates more fairy tale elements than many other contenders in the genre. Still, Wright said that it was important to her that the costumes looked "realistic" and that they "should be believable, even though it is a medieval fantasy."
The Witcher Season 2 is now streaming on Netflix, along with Season 1 and the animated film The Witcher: Nightmare of the Wolf. More Witcher content is coming to the streamer in the next few weeks and months.