The show, defying all odds, manages to wrap up everything pretty well in ten episodes.
Trevor Belmont (Richard Armitage) is the last surviving member of the Belmont family, legendary monster hunters. He is brought out of semi-retirement and full-on alcoholism by the reappearance of Dracula (Graham McTavish), the most powerful vampire lord, who has now dedicated all of his resources to destroying humanity after they killed his wife, Lisa (Emily Swallow). Together with the magician Sypha Belnades (Alejandra Reynoso) and Dracula’s half-vampire son Alucard (James Callis), Trevor manages to kill Dracula and supposedly break up his army. Unfortunately, it turns out that many of Dracula’s followers have plans of their own, ranging from the scheming vampiress Carmilla (Jaime Murray) to the demon-conjuring forgemasters Isaac and Hector (Adetokumboh M’Cormack and Theo James). Trevor and Sypha manage to stop a group of evil monks from resurrecting Dracula with the help of the reality-hopping Count of Saint Germain (Bill Nighy). Unfortunately, it seems that a lot more people are trying to do the same thing and it’s up to Trevor, Sypha, and Alucard to finally put an end to the possibility of bringing back the lord of the dead as well as stopping Dracula’s agent Varney (Malcolm McDowell).
At the end of Season 2 of Castlevania, Dracula is dead. Now, if you’ve played Castlevania games, you’d probably know that Dracula being dead never really stops him from being the villain. In fact, it’s canon that Dracula automatically comes back from Hell every 100 years even if nothing else brings him back in the interim. Only Ganondorf pulls off sequels with a greater level of regularity. However, the third season did a good job of establishing that there are other threats than Dracula in this world, particularly since a number of other vampires have been united via Dracula’s army and many of them have ambitions on a large scale.
It’s interesting that the show points out that, even though vampires often find different ways to justify it, almost all of them want to take over the world in order to control it and keep it from changing. Vampires are like everyone, they are born into a world that, three generations later, seems almost completely alien to them. While humans who live to 80 might feel like the world moved on, Vampires can live forever, so the feelings get even greater and the fear of change increases even more. It’s also interesting that Dracula is largely the exception to that rule, because he did try to change himself rather than stopping change, until the church killed his wife. I think it’s part of what makes him the head vampire, since he never stops acquiring new skills.
After spending a season setting up so many other threats, primarily Isaac and Carmilla, the show manages to believably resolve all of the secondary antagonist’s arcs believably, mostly through character growth or self-sabotage, in order to bring us back to the thing that everyone wants to see… an attempt to bring back Dracula. This time, it seems like almost every group has some level of involvement in it. Throughout the series, there has been one Castlevania mainstay which has been conspicuously absent, and their reveal in connection with this revival is nothing short of amazing.
It helps that the season also focuses on making us more in tune with how Sypha, Trevor, and Alucard are feeling about their places in the world and how much they want to finally bring some level of peace to humanity, meaning when we see them back together again, we know they’re united in their cause. The show also kicks the action sequences up several notches, with a number of them being among the best animated fights I’ve seen in a long while. Creative, fast paced, and intensely focused, it’s clear that there was a lot of effort put into these and the last two are probably the best two, so it really feels like the show builds up as it goes.
Overall, just a great way to finish a series.
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