Castlevania—Season 1

castlevania season 1 poster netflix
7.0 Overall Score
Story: 7/10
Acting: 8/10
Visuals: 8/10

Great potential

Too short and over before it gets going

castlevania season 1 title card credits episode guide

The Castle is Open!!!

The love of Vlad Dracula Tepes has been slain for practicing medicine which was deemed as witchcraft.  Now, Dracula is spreading his evil across the land of Wallachia, and the people are living in fear of the evil.  Wallachia’s only hope could be the Belmonts, but the Belmonts have all but been wiped out except Trevor Belmont who now wanders town to town.  When he encounters a group of speakers who believe in a being called the “Sleeping Soldier”, Trevor Belmont could be the key to stopping Dracula once and for all…but who is the Sleeping Soldier and does he really exist?

castlevania season 1 episode 1 witchbottle dracula smoke

Dusty Dracula isn’t good for allergies

Castlevania—Season 1 was released on Netflix on July 7, 2017.  The animated series was based upon the Konami video game series released on September 26, 1986 and primarily based upon Castlevania III:  Dracula’s Curse.  Adapted by comic book writer Warren Ellis, the four episode series was immediately renewed for an eight episode second season.

Castlevania was one of my video games, and Castlevania III was my favorite of the original NES series.  Video games are notoriously difficult to adapt into anything good.  When I heard it was being adapted by Netflix, I kind of groaned, but Castlevania—Season 1 shows real potential.

castlevania season 1 episode 4 monument monster bishop

So, I’m guessing you’re not her to pay your tithe…

The killer about this season is that it is only four episodes long.  It essentially is a segmented animated film and not really a series.  The whole thing can be watched in one short sitting.  Just as the series begins to pick-up speed, it is over…it is almost a tease which is really frustrating since the second season isn’t going to be released until 2018.

The story you get is rather solid.  It smartly doesn’t have Trevor going up against Dracula immediately and realizes that the series’ culmination will be the battle.  It also seeks to humanize Dracula both with the Lisa character and his son Alucard.  The whole series doesn’t have much time for character development so I hope that the next season gets more into that.

castlevania season 1 episode 4 monument trevor alucard sypha

We’re so hip it hurts…no 8-Bit here!!!

The style of the art is a blend of anime and American art which sometimes also resembles the art of shows like Aeon Flux.  It is slick and stylized with atmospheric lighting and looks.  I enjoyed the art, but those who aren’t fans of the style of anime might have preferred a bit more traditional style of animation (though I think then it would run the risk of looking like a bad He-Man episode).

Castlevania is an interesting premise, but it feels really half-baked due to the short season.  I wish that the series had unrolled a full season of at least ten episodes or planned for a quick follow-up second season (but I’m guessing they needed to see how it would be received).  Regardless, I hope that Castlevania doesn’t lose steam before it really begins.

Castlevania—Season 1 Complete Episode Guide:

castlevania season 1 episode 1 witchbottle dracula


1.1       Witchbottle Release Date:  07/07/17

A woman named Lisa seeks advancement through science and dreams of being a doctor.  Going to Vlad Dracula Tepes for his knowledge, Lisa is willing to risk her life to learn from him.  When the religious men of the town learn of Lisa’s actions, they decide she must die…which sends Dracula into a rage and vowing to wipe Wallachia off the map.

castlevania season 1 episode 2 necropolis trevor belmont whip


1.2       Necropolis Release Date:  07/07/17

Dracula’s darkness is spreading across the land of Wallachia, and Trevor Belmont finds his family name is part of those being targeted by the wrath of the people.  Travelling to a town called Gresit, Trevor finds the speakers who believe in the legend of the “Sleeping Soldier” who has the power to defeat Dracula…and finds himself tasked with finding a missing speaker.

castlevania season 1 episode 3 labyrinth trevor belmont vs cyclops


1.3       Labyrinth Release Date:  07/07/17

Trevor is on a mission to find the grandson of the head of the speakers before sunset…but discovers a Cyclops and that the grandson is actually Sypha Belnades.  When Trevor learns that Sypha and her family are the targets of the church, Trevor decides he must make a stand.

castlevania season 1 episode 4 monument trevor belmont vs alucard


1.4       Monument Release Date:  07/07/17

Gresit is being overrun by Dracula’s army, and Trevor tries to reveal to Gresit the real reason that Dracula has attacked.  Travelling into the underground with Sypha, Trevor is about to learn who the Sleeping Soldier is…and why he has a grudge with Dracula.

Related Links:

Castlevania—Season 2 Review and Complete Episode Guide

Castlevania—Season 3 Review and Complete Episode Guide

Castlevania—Season 4 Review and Complete Episode Guide


Castlevania II:  Simon’s Quest

Author: JPRoscoe View all posts by
Follow me on Twitter/Instagram/Letterboxd @JPRoscoe76! Loves all things pop-culture especially if it has a bit of a counter-culture twist. Plays video games (basically from the start when a neighbor brought home an Atari 2600), comic loving (for almost 30 years), and a true critic of movies. Enjoys the art house but also isn't afraid to let in one or two popular movies at the same time.

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