Fans of The Witcher have blasted the show’s executive producer Tomek Baginski after he gave an interview to a European news site where he blamed American audiences for the underwhelming third season. Baginski, who is Polish, appeared to suggest that he had been forced to dumb down the storylines for the U.S. market.
Season 3 of the hit Netflix series saw a drop in viewership and was regarded as a disappointment by many after its widely praised second season, with fans saying the series had strayed from writer Andrzej Sapkowski’s original source material.
Speaking to the Polish website Wyborcza, Baginski said, “When a series is made for a huge mass of viewers, with different experiences, from different parts of the world, and a large part of them are Americans, these simplifications not only make sense, they are necessary.”
“It’s painful for us, and for me too, but the higher level of nuance and complexity will have a smaller range; it won’t reach people,” he added (per Decider).
Fans on The Witcher Reddit forum took issue with Baginksi’s statement, with one viewer writing, “We all know it’s easier to blame the fans than to take responsibility.”
One fan pointed out how Baginski’s reasoning doesn’t make sense: “If he says they dumbed down the show to reach a larger audience, then the viewership should increase if he was correct. The fact that the viewership decreased and people complained about how dumb the show was means that they underestimated their audience and shouldn’t have dumbed it down at all.”
“The entitlement is just beyond comprehension,” said another.
“This guy is one of the main producers for the show, and if you look at past comments, seems to have been instrumental in the overall strategy of reducing a treasure trove of material from the games and books, which was revered by millions of people, down into what we have,” wrote another commenter.
Baginski has made similar comments in the past, telling Polish YouTube channel Imponderabilia last year, “When it comes to shows, the younger the public is, the logic of the plot is less significant…Those people grew up on TikTok and YouTube. They jump from video to video,” noting that younger fans cared more about “emotions” than plot.
“It sounds like Baginski is incapable of comprehending that the series just plain turned to crap. I’m surprised he didn’t refer to viewers as “peasants,” added another fan.
The Witcher Season 3 premiered with Volume 1 on June 29, with Volume 2 dropping last Thursday, July 29. This marks the final season with Henry Cavill in the lead role as Geralt of Rivia.
The Witcher, Season 3, Streaming, Netflix