The Witcher season 2, episode 4 recap – “Redanian Intelligence”

December 17, 2021
Jonathon Wilson 0
Netflix, Streaming Service, TV, TV Recaps
4

Summary

“Redanian Intelligence” reintroduces an old friend and injects some welcome levity.

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4

Summary

“Redanian Intelligence” reintroduces an old friend and injects some welcome levity.

This recap of The Witcher season 2, episode 4, “Redanian Intelligence”, contains spoilers.


As is becoming a trend, “Redanian Intelligence” runs for the most part on two parallel tracks. One finds Yennefer, following on from her freeing Cahir at the end of the previous episode, running into an old frenemy who is currently going under a new alias, and the other continues to languish at Kaer Morhen, where Triss Merrigold arrives at the top of the episode, summoned by Geralt, in order to help Ciri decipher her powers and place in the world. We’ll tackle them separately, and check out some of the other goings-on while we’re at it.

The Witcher season 2, episode 4 recap

With Triss now at Kaer Morhen, Geralt gives her the lowdown on Ciri’s powers. They’re vague, currently, but since she saw him before she saw him at Sodden Hill, and since she led him to the leshy in the woods, it’s obvious that she has a fair amount of untapped magical ability. He also shows the mage the monster that killed the leshy, which he theorizes might have been alchemically mutated by a mage. Triss has a test for that, but it takes long enough that the pair of them have time to discuss the supposed emotional numbness of Witchers, a characteristic I’d actually forgotten about since basically every Witcher we have met thus far hasn’t had any problems displaying emotion at all.

Either way, it’s part of an ongoing theme of Geralt gradually softening as he cares for Ciri, which is a worthwhile way to round out his character while this subplot continues to round out the show’s wider fiction. Geralt and Triss discover, for instance, that the monsters are coming from a Monolith, and learn from Ciri that she toppled one outside Cintra with her powers. These details are beginning to come together to form a clearer picture, while Ciri’s potential importance manifests in another way. Where she has bled in the forest and around the grounds of Kaer Morhen, particular flowers are beginning to bloom, a kind that only grows where Elder blood has been spilled. These flowers are an integral component of the mutagen used to create Witchers, which has been lost for years. Ciri might well be the key to restoring the Witcher order itself.

Elsewhere in “Redanian Intelligence”, Yen and Cahir find themselves on the way to Cintra, passing through a crowded Redanian marketplace where elves are being brutally rounded up as captives. Wanted posters for the pair of them are also floating about, so their only way to move unmolested is secretly, perhaps with the assistance of a mysterious figure calling himself the Sandpiper, who has been quietly ferrying elves Underground Railroad-style to Cintra. Teaming up with two elves and battling a sewer monster, they eventually find the Sandpiper, who turns out to be Jaskier, still stinging after his “break-up” from Geralt. (Also look out for the meta-reference to the criticisms of the first season’s convoluted narrative structure).

The show’s persistent theme of persecution is felt very strongly throughout this subplot, with the elves being particularly brutalized to make the point about their ostracization. Despite their testy relationship, Jaskier is eventually able to get both Yen and Cahir to the boat that’ll take them to Cintra, but when he’s promptly knocked out and disappears, Yen leaves the vessel to track him down and repay the favor.

In a couple of scenes elsewhere, King Vizimir is almost assassinated but is saved at the last moment by Dijkstra, who later proposes that given the turmoil at Cintra, it might be the right time to try and claim the city for Redania. Dijkstra works out a plan to send an elf sleeper agent into the city, teeing up further developments in the back half of the season.

You can stream The Witcher season 2, episode 4, “Redanian Intelligence”, exclusively on Netflix.

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