Jaskier has always been a scene-stealer. In Netflix's The Witcher, Joey Batey’s bard brings a heavy dose of comedy, a beautiful voice, and a whole lot of heart. It's therefore exciting – and perhaps slightly confusing – that Jaskier will feature in the upcoming prequel series The Witcher: Blood Origin.
There have been plenty of rumors about his role in the show, which is set thousands of years before the time of Geralt, Ciri, and Yennefer. And while there remains a shroud of mystery over everything ahead of the show’s release, GamesRadar+ sat down with Batey to press him on Jaskier's return – and the plan beyond that.
"It was very easy for me to keep it all very secret because I was shooting season 3 whilst I was shooting this," he says. "So if I'm completely honest, I was so tired and exhausted. We're shooting until four in the morning for days on end, and season 3 was very, very similar. I was just so tired I didn’t have to tell anyone about anything."
The Witcher: Blood Origin is set during the height of Elven civilization and centers on seven warriors brought together by fate. It also introduces two incredibly important elements of the fantasy universe: the Conjunction of the Spheres (when the worlds of elves, monsters, and men collided) and the creation of the first witcher.
These elements will play a big part heading into The Witcher season 3, which Batey says has finished filming ahead of its summer 2023 release. It also marks the last season he will appear opposite Henry Cavill’s incarnation of Geralt as the actor prepares to exit the show ahead of The Witcher season 4. In his place, Liam Hemsworth is suiting – and wigging – up to play the monster hunter.
"I'm obviously gonna miss Henry a huge amount," Batey says. "Henry and I are very, very good pals and he has been the stalwart of the show, the gravity of the show, and the driving force of the show for four years now. And we get on very well, he's always the first to have a little laugh in the corner. So I'm going to, on a personal level, miss him.
"But Liam, I've already spoken to him a little bit. He is throwing himself into the deep end of this mythos and this canon with such power and grace and aplomb that I'm really excited to work with him and to see the kind of interpretation that he's going to bring together. I think it's exciting."
As for Jaskier’s future in The Witcher universe, there’s an appetite for a spin-off exclusively focused on the bard. But would Batey be keen? "Oh, that would be a question for Lauren [Schmidt Hissrich, showrunner]," he laughs. "Who knows? I mean, ultimately, I don't know if it would work or not because no one wants to just see Jaskier, they want to see Jaskier and the gang. But if it did come along, it would be something that… You know, let's do a musical. We'll just do a whole musical for like 10 hours, and everyone can get really sick of him."
The Witcher: Blood Origin arrives on Netflix on Christmas Day. Read our deep dive into the prequel series with the cast and creators and our chat with The Witcher showrunner on Cavill's exit.