Castlevania on Netflix

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Castlevania on Netflix

Post by NeoGoomba » 2017-07-08 04:20pm

Anyone else give this a proper binge yet? I thought that, for the barebones plot of Castlevania III that Warren Ellis based this off of, it was a pretty solid showing. Good voice actors, some good action scenes (especially the end of Episode 4, good lord), and the perfect "Castlevania" kind of atmosphere.

Sure, there was some clunky dialogue/exposition at times, but man, my enjoyment of this show took me by surprise. I was quite nervous I'd hate it.

Fun fact: the animation director of the series, Samuel Deats, did the cover of my first novel way back when. At least one of us has made it! :mrgreen:
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Re: Castlevania on Netflix

Post by biostem » 2017-07-08 05:03pm

I watched the first 3 episodes. I'm watching it in Japanese with subtitles. So far, I'm enjoying it. The action is good, and the characters are interesting. They teased Alucard with what I saw, so I'm hoping we get to see more of him. I like that they're not shying away from all the gore...

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Re: Castlevania on Netflix

Post by Iroscato » 2017-07-08 05:32pm

Is this worth watching if you've never played the games?
Yeah, I've always taken the subtext of the Birther movement to be, "The rules don't count here! This is different! HE'S BLACK! BLACK, I SAY! ARE YOU ALL BLIND!?

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Re: Castlevania on Netflix

Post by biostem » 2017-07-08 05:58pm

Iroscato wrote:
2017-07-08 05:32pm
Is this worth watching if you've never played the games?
Well, to give you a simple summary, it's basically a corrupt church that pisses off Dracula, and the Belmont family, who were semi-famous monster hunters, were excommunicated because the church didn't like how they associated with the supernatural, and now they have to come back and save the day...

I think you can enjoy it, even if you never played the games...

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Re: Castlevania on Netflix

Post by Iroscato » 2017-07-08 07:59pm

biostem wrote:
2017-07-08 05:58pm
Iroscato wrote:
2017-07-08 05:32pm
Is this worth watching if you've never played the games?
Well, to give you a simple summary, it's basically a corrupt church that pisses off Dracula, and the Belmont family, who were semi-famous monster hunters, were excommunicated because the church didn't like how they associated with the supernatural, and now they have to come back and save the day...

I think you can enjoy it, even if you never played the games...
That does sound rather intriguing...I'll check it out once I'm done with Cowboy Bebop.
Yeah, I've always taken the subtext of the Birther movement to be, "The rules don't count here! This is different! HE'S BLACK! BLACK, I SAY! ARE YOU ALL BLIND!?

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Re: Castlevania on Netflix

Post by biostem » 2017-07-08 08:38pm

Iroscato wrote:
2017-07-08 07:59pm
biostem wrote:
2017-07-08 05:58pm
Iroscato wrote:
2017-07-08 05:32pm
Is this worth watching if you've never played the games?
Well, to give you a simple summary, it's basically a corrupt church that pisses off Dracula, and the Belmont family, who were semi-famous monster hunters, were excommunicated because the church didn't like how they associated with the supernatural, and now they have to come back and save the day...

I think you can enjoy it, even if you never played the games...
That does sound rather intriguing...I'll check it out once I'm done with Cowboy Bebop.
Great! :D

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Re: Castlevania on Netflix

Post by TheFeniX » 2017-07-08 09:36pm

I only played Castlevania 1 and Super Castlevania and I find this show fairly decent. Honestly, kind of a Vampire Hunter D vibe.

But it's Dracula and vampires so it's not like this plot is ever going to solely revolve around Konami's take.

At the least, it doesn't pull a lot of punches.

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Re: Castlevania on Netflix

Post by TheFeniX » 2017-07-09 03:10pm

I mean... this qualifies as story spoilers, but nothing you won't see on the 3rd episode.
Spoiler
I love how cliche it was when the Speaker is like "my grandson died down there" and all I can say is:
1. He's not dead.
2. He's not a he, he's a she.
3. She's hot.
And it's like "3 for 3 bitches." And all I get out of my wife is "it's weird you figure this stuff out and also that you bother figuring it out." She doesn't appreciate my genius. Though they gave away more than they should by using "they" multiple times. That's bad grammar son and only done when they want to hide something.
NeoGoomba wrote:
2017-07-08 04:20pm
Anyone else give this a proper binge yet? I thought that, for the barebones plot of Castlevania III that Warren Ellis based this off of, it was a pretty solid showing. Good voice actors, some good action scenes (especially the end of Episode 4, good lord), and the perfect "Castlevania" kind of atmosphere.
Then again, a show some 30-odd years later reminds me I actually DID play at least some of CV3 since I recall a game where you swapped between characters and there was a "caster-type" and Alucard. However, I don't remember a whole lot after that. So, my calling out of the spoilered section may not be as impressive since I HAVE played parts of the original game. But cut me some slack as I played a ton of NES games and I was 7 at the time.

And the animation is damn solid. Enough so that the small additions of motion blur (not just on the characters) is actually additive to the animation rather than just covering up flaws. And, as wonky as the physics would be (hey, it's fucking MAGIC!), this is probably the first time I've ever been impressed by a whip in a fight. Especially versus a sword.

"This isn't a bar fight. Show some class." Hilarious. In fact, most of Trevor's dialog and reactions are great, even if that particular line wasn't spoken by him. The English voice acting is great all around, the animation never fails, they aren't pulling punches on the gore nor "the church sucks," and even if the villain motives are cliche that are still a farcry better than "because I'm fucking EVIL!"

10/10 would binge watch any day. Once again though: you don't need to know anything about the original Games/IP to enjoy this show.

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Re: Castlevania on Netflix

Post by NeoGoomba » 2017-07-09 04:18pm

The episode three scene in the catacombs is a boss fight straight up ripped from Castlevania 3. I giggled when "it" shambled out and jumped Trevor.

Even Dracula's teleporting in columns of light/flame are out of the games.

And yeah, as FenIX says, this show almost single-handedly legitimizes whips as combat weapons in the hands of a Belmont, even a grumbling, hung-over one.

My biggest gripe was no music from the NES series was used at all. Give me "Vampire Killer" or "Bloody Tears" in season 2, please.
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Re: Castlevania on Netflix

Post by TheFeniX » 2017-07-09 09:36pm

biostem wrote:
2017-07-08 05:03pm
I watched the first 3 episodes. I'm watching it in Japanese with subtitles.
I have to ask: why? This is not a Japanese production, but a North American one just using the IP that Konami seems to have nearly shelved in favor of much more popular titles. At least for Japan, as if memory serves Castlevania is like Metroid in that it's much more popular in the Americas and Europe than Japan.

This is only inspired by anime but is an English production and said English VAs are pretty damn good. Probably explains the much higher production values, much like Afro Samurai.

Being honest here: not judging at all, just curious.
NeoGoomba wrote:
2017-07-09 04:18pm
The episode three scene in the catacombs is a boss fight straight up ripped from Castlevania 3. I giggled when "it" shambled out and jumped Trevor.
"What is a man?" Lied again, I have played bits of SotN as well.
My biggest gripe was no music from the NES series was used at all. Give me "Vampire Killer" or "Bloody Tears" in season 2, please.

Get pumped.

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Re: Castlevania on Netflix

Post by LadyTevar » 2017-07-09 09:45pm

Binged it. Loved it.
I couldn't play the game worth shit but I loved watching others play.

Yeah, I picked up on the "Grandchild", "They" and other hints that the missing one would be Female. Also figured that Alucard would be the "Hidden Warrior". Not sure how the "stories from the future" work, but hey, Magic.
Trevor is a classic reluctant Hero, and I liked that they went that angle with him. I was so happy to see that Bishop get his ... especially when the demon told him God wasn't there. :twisted:

Good plot, nice visuals, good dialogue, and I am hoping they put the next eps out ASAP.
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Re: Castlevania on Netflix

Post by TheFeniX » 2017-07-09 11:48pm

LadyTevar wrote:
2017-07-09 09:45pm
Yeah, I picked up on the "Grandchild", "They" and other hints that the missing one would be Female. Also figured that Alucard would be the "Hidden Warrior".
It was an "interesting" setup, but the payoff kind of annoyed me.

A. He's looking for the body and you couldn't count on clothing to identify her considering the myriad of ways she could have died. They had no reason not to give a description of her to the man looking for her "body."
B. They didn't go for broke with masculine pronouns, instead opting for incorrect grammar, which leads to C.
c. Trevor immediately explains the reason for the "vague" pronouns upon finding her. So, there's no reason not to just all-in on the masculine pronouns.

I'm being trivial here, but it stands out considering just how smart (as smart as it can be) the writing generally is 4 episodes in. Like, a throwback to the first episode barfight with reaction completely in character for Trevor. I like little things so I tend to get annoyed by little things breaking the wrong way.

Speaking of Alucard, that whole scene was a macho throwback I really liked, even up to Sypha's complete lack of understanding on why they were about to throw down and Trevor being willing to shoot the shit before-hand with zero sense of urgency because... you know, fuck it. And Sypha's decision to side with Trevor there at the end was, at least for me, a nice bit of development even though it was unnecessary.

Show just feels good. Like the writer and director just really give a shit about it. And I'd have to assume they do since, I mean, Castlevania isn't an IP you exactly dig up for any old reason. It's really just one take on the Dracula mythos, so it had every opportunity to be terrible and it isn't so far. And its popularity at this point is going to be near solely based on nostalgia.
Not sure how the "stories from the future" work, but hey, Magic.
Ok, so I didn't play most of the CV games, but I actually do know a bit of the lore behind it and general Japanese ideas behind Vampires and their "SCIENCE!" Because of that, I don't want to risk spoiling any future plot exposition for you in case it becomes a point of the show. And it SHOULD become a point in the show. So I also recommend avoiding looking into it if spoilers are an issue for you.

I will say some of the Castlevania lore is pretty good for what it is. But I also like batshit crazy lore, like in Elder Scrolls. Such as the Nerevarine (protagonist) from Morrowind. It's debatable if the player was actually the Nerevarine, but because in ES "walking the walk is talking the talk" you ARE the Nerevarine. So... technically you could become the Nerevarine by acting like him/her, but that would mean you've ALWAYS been the Nerevarine. Or how even though Talos wasn't always a God, he was always a God.

You know, because LSD is a thing.

NOTE: I bring up ES lore over Castlevania lore specifically due to the possible spoilers.
Trevor is a classic reluctant Hero, and I liked that they went that angle with him. I was so happy to see that Bishop get his ... especially when the demon told him God wasn't there. :twisted:
Early on too, which is interesting.

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Re: Castlevania on Netflix

Post by biostem » 2017-07-10 02:39am

TheFenix wrote:I have to ask: why? This is not a Japanese production, but a North American one just using the IP that Konami seems to have nearly shelved in favor of much more popular titles. At least for Japan, as if memory serves Castlevania is like Metroid in that it's much more popular in the Americas and Europe than Japan.

This is only inspired by anime but is an English production and said English VAs are pretty damn good. Probably explains the much higher production values, much like Afro Samurai.

Being honest here: not judging at all, just curious.
To be honest, I don't have Netflix, and am watching it online, and that happens to be the format it was in. I also tend to prefer subtitles, as I usually watch while working out on a rowing machine, and it's easier to follow the plot with subtitles, than to turn up the volume very high - especially if I am only able to fit in my workout late at night. Given what you've said about it being a North American production, I may have to check out the English dub, (but if it uses some of the more common English voice actors, I may dislike it, as I tend to associate such VAs with their previous works).

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Re: Castlevania on Netflix

Post by Joun_Lord » 2017-07-10 03:55am

Burned through the first episode. Quite enjoyable. Reminds me a bit of the previously mentioned Vampire Hunter D along with a bit the I guess "flowing" art style of Peter Chung.

The thing I really love about it and indeed some of my favorite animes is the fact it shows something truly awe inspiring, some hard to do bordering on impossible through traditional actors on screen type of film. Vladdy's castle surrounded by the impaled dead and the interior were majestic.

Voice cast was good. Not a big anime snob were I think anything dubbed is trash. Not really a fan of Castlevania, don't think I've played any of the games, so going in mostly blind and find it pretty enjoyable despite knowing nothing ahead of time beyond its based on that game with the whip.

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Re: Castlevania on Netflix

Post by TheFeniX » 2017-07-10 04:32am

biostem wrote:
2017-07-10 02:39am
To be honest, I don't have Netflix, and am watching it online, and that happens to be the format it was in. I also tend to prefer subtitles, as I usually watch while working out on a rowing machine, and it's easier to follow the plot with subtitles, than to turn up the volume very high - especially if I am only able to fit in my workout late at night. Given what you've said about it being a North American production, I may have to check out the English dub, (but if it uses some of the more common English voice actors, I may dislike it, as I tend to associate such VAs with their previous works).
Define "common."

I'm pretty good at picking out VAs and this one threw me for a loop. The only one I pegged immediately (took me a few lines) was Tony Amendola (Brae-Tak (sp) from Stargate SG-1). Trevor is the guy who played Thorin in The Hobbit who honestly comes off sounding like dejected Pierce Brosnan at times (not in a bad way, Brosnan has a dry and sarcastic wit and delivery I really like). Alucard is Gaius Baltair from Neo-BSG.

Now, more than a few of these guys/gals have been around. Tony alone has done everything from Zorro to voicing Khadgar in World of Warcraft. But if you're referencing the big names in anime VA work. No. I mean, I've binged so many animes in the past few months, it's like "Hey, it's Cherami Leigh again. Awesome." (Seriously, I do like her voice, but she's in everything... also, Texas women fucking LOVE voicing anime... and video games, go Texas). But, you won't find that here. In Castlevania, you'll find European actors doing most of the lifting. So, unlike some other Robin Hoods, these guys can speak with a..... whatever kind of accents they're going for.

And if you somehow picked out Matt Frewer (The asshole neighbor dad in Honey I Shrunk the Kids) as The Bishop, you're some kind of savant.

Not that you owed me one: Fair enough about the explanation. I was honestly just curious. But I can't think of a single complaint with any of the English voice work so far. Maybe Sypha, but that would only be because she's opposite Trevor who is like a machine designed to shoot out chuckle-worthy quips, he just kind of walks over her character. But that's hard to complain about since he's setup as a "washed-up, but not actually washed up" badass trying to find fucks to give. And when done right, that's just gold.

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Re: Castlevania on Netflix

Post by Joun_Lord » 2017-07-10 04:41am

I picked out Frewer but only because I've seen so much stuff thats he's been in like the A-Team, Max Headroom, TNG, and more recently Watchmen. He has a pretty distinctive voice too. The rest of the cast sounded familiar but I had to check IMDB to put voices to faces. The guy who played Trevor sounded familiar but not because of the Hobbiteses but because of Strike Back.

Also looking there I found out the dudes who made Dredd and bunch of internet shorts like Punisher Dirty Laundry and the grimdark Power Rangers was an executive producer on this.

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Re: Castlevania on Netflix

Post by TheFeniX » 2017-07-10 12:30pm

So, doing some reading around, these first 4 episodes qualify as "season 1," with Netflix ordering a second season right after this premiered. They are also bumping season 2 to 8 episodes vs 4. Can someone check me on this?

Either way, I get a little worried about development like this. I get Netflix works differently than broadcast TV studios (and that is great in many areas, since for just one: they can bring over/adapt/release whatever the Hell they want in however small or large quantity), but you can run into issues by not ordering "upfront" in that both actors and studios can start work on other projects. This can lead to some quality control issues or just general logistics issues.

I was looking into one "old" anime that blew up once Netflix bought the streaming rights to it and hosted it. Sales of the Manga and DVDs went gangbusters. So, there was talk of doing another season since the first around 2012. But many of the original team had moved on to other projects. I think this may have been Blue Exorcist, but there's so many I've looked into in this vein. Anyways, they are continually stuck in "negotiations" WRT the project.

EDIT: Actually, might have been Devil is a Part Timer since I recall sales of the Light Novels over in the U.S. and Europe going bonkers as well.
Joun_Lord wrote:
2017-07-10 04:41am
I picked out Frewer but only because I've seen so much stuff thats he's been in like the A-Team, Max Headroom, TNG, and more recently Watchmen. He has a pretty distinctive voice too. The rest of the cast sounded familiar but I had to check IMDB to put voices to faces. The guy who played Trevor sounded familiar but not because of the Hobbiteses but because of Strike Back.
Well, I didn't hate the Hobbit, but I damn sure didn't like it. But I'm now a fan of Armitage. There's a skill behind (what I call) "sighing out dialog." It's where an actor is letting out a disgruntled sigh, but managing to push dialog with it. If I had to give an example, the near entirety of Bruce Willis' performance in Die Hard. Oddly, it's easy to do in real life without sounding terrible, my dad alone is an expert at it. But in front of a camera, it can come off really bad.

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Re: Castlevania on Netflix

Post by biostem » 2017-07-10 05:13pm

TheFeniX wrote:
2017-07-10 04:32am
Snipped for brevity
Well, I don't know the VAs by name, but I was more referring to your usual English dubbing that is done with other anime titles. Still, it sounds like they got an atypical VA cast, so that's great news...

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Re: Castlevania on Netflix (S2 is out!)

Post by LadyTevar » 2018-10-27 10:15pm

SEASON TWO IS OUT!!!!

And It's AWESOME!!!
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Re: Castlevania on Netflix

Post by FaxModem1 » 2018-10-28 04:43pm

I was a fan of season 1, and am now working my way through season 2. I really wish there was more of Lisa Tepes. A person who is doing all she can to bring about the equivalent of the Scientific Revolution a few centuries earlier than happened in history, and burned as a witch for it. It gives strong motivation for Dracula, but it feels like a rare character that we don't see often enough in television. I'm glad we got to see more of her, even if it was just the few minutes we saw of her in the opening of season 2.
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Re: Castlevania on Netflix

Post by LadyTevar » 2018-10-28 07:49pm

FaxModem1 wrote:
2018-10-28 04:43pm
I was a fan of season 1, and am now working my way through season 2. I really wish there was more of Lisa Tepes. A person who is doing all she can to bring about the equivalent of the Scientific Revolution a few centuries earlier than happened in history, and burned as a witch for it. It gives strong motivation for Dracula, but it feels like a rare character that we don't see often enough in television. I'm glad we got to see more of her, even if it was just the few minutes we saw of her in the opening of season 2.
There's some dialogue that makes me think that the world of Castlevania is post-Apocalyptic, with humans having forgotten Science, and then there's all the actual Magic thrown about. And the Languages -- Enochian, Adamiac. Then a discussion of where the names Trevor and Belmont come from, as they're "not Wallachian". So we get mentions of France, and the Vampires moving 'inland'. So much the same, so much changed.
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Re: Castlevania on Netflix

Post by FaxModem1 » 2018-10-28 10:02pm

LadyTevar wrote:
2018-10-28 07:49pm
FaxModem1 wrote:
2018-10-28 04:43pm
I was a fan of season 1, and am now working my way through season 2. I really wish there was more of Lisa Tepes. A person who is doing all she can to bring about the equivalent of the Scientific Revolution a few centuries earlier than happened in history, and burned as a witch for it. It gives strong motivation for Dracula, but it feels like a rare character that we don't see often enough in television. I'm glad we got to see more of her, even if it was just the few minutes we saw of her in the opening of season 2.
There's some dialogue that makes me think that the world of Castlevania is post-Apocalyptic, with humans having forgotten Science, and then there's all the actual Magic thrown about. And the Languages -- Enochian, Adamiac. Then a discussion of where the names Trevor and Belmont come from, as they're "not Wallachian". So we get mentions of France, and the Vampires moving 'inland'. So much the same, so much changed.
So, like the Dark Ages after the fall of the Roman Empire and around the start of the Renaissance, which is around where the setting is?

I do think a theme of the show is essentially, "Knowledge improves the world, while ignorance makes it worse." It's what I think they're going for with Alucard, in carrying his mother's work.
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Re: Castlevania on Netflix (S2 is out!)

Post by NeoGoomba » 2018-10-29 10:36am

LadyTevar wrote:
2018-10-27 10:15pm
SEASON TWO IS OUT!!!!

And It's AWESOME!!!
We've only had time to watch the first two episodes, but I really like it. I was surprised at how much screen time Dracula is getting, but him and his minions are very interesting. And c'mon, Peter Stormare fucking KILLS it as Godbrand.
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Re: Castlevania on Netflix

Post by Tiriol » 2018-10-30 03:51am

For some reason, I've lost interest. There's a strange undercurrent of misanthropy at work and while I understand that most of the people spouting about humanity's faults are supposed to be villains, there really isn't that much of a counterpoint. Plus I'm getting tired of how repetitive the word fuck has become in the series. I don't mind if characters use strong language, it just loses effectiveness and becomes almost South Park -esque in some cases if it's always being said.
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Re: Castlevania on Netflix

Post by NeoGoomba » 2018-11-05 08:08am

We finally finished Season 2, and holy SHIT what an incredible ending. The second to last episode, "For Love" is the climax, and in every sense of the word it delivers. The showdown with Dracula and his council was phenomenal, and the ending was fucking gut wrenching. And we FINALLY get some Castlevania music - the perfect song at the perfect time.

The fact that we got an entire episode after that for an epilogue to set up Season 3 was icing on the cake.

You can tell the writers love the source material and treat it with just enough reverence to adapt it without going overboard into indulgence.

Please do yourselves a favor and watch it, even if you never played the games.
"A person is smart. People are dumb, panicky, dangerous animals and you know it. Fifteen hundred years ago everybody knew the Earth was the center of the universe. Five hundred years ago, everybody knew the Earth was flat, and fifteen minutes ago, you knew that humans were alone on this planet. Imagine what you'll know...tomorrow."
-Agent Kay

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