Is this a fitting conclusion to a fan-favourite and well critically-received show?
After four seasons of some of the best video game adapted TV we've been fortunate enough to receive, Netflix's Castlevania has now come to an end with its fourth and final season. The anime show took the iconic game series and gave us an action-packed and truly exciting series, and the most recent season that premiered in its entirety last night ensured that the show would not be going out on anything less than that.
Picking up where season three left off, season four continues the journey of Trevor Belmont (Richard Armitage) and Sypha Belnades (Alejandra Reynoso) as they proceed to rid the world of the vicious evil that threatens it. For this season however, we're taken back to the beginning, as the biggest and baddest foe they've ever encountered, Dracula himself, is looking to be resurrected by those that followed him. At the same time, series' favourites, Alucard, Hector, Isaac, and Carmilla and her sisters are also all looking to wrap up their own story arcs, arcs that began when Dracula initially fell and end when Dracula is either resurrected or finally defeated for the last time.
Alike the seasons that came before, season four once again delivers a well-paced adventure. The show has a fantastic balance of gripping action and narrative to push the plot further forward, and it never feels dull to watch. Across these new ten-episodes, there really isn't a moment you won't be captivated, even when it takes a minute to focus its efforts on the less important members of the cast, who for the most part filled more of a supporting role.
Talking about the characters, season four also offers up more of what we have come to expect from the Castlevania main cast. For example, Trevor is cool, calm and collected, but also a little cocky still, even when facing the most adversity in his entire life. Alucard on the other hand is, for the most part, cold and distant, a being isolated by his own hybrid human-vampire nature. Season four also does a great job of answering some of the questions we had regarding some of the newer characters as well, including a short look at the backstory of Bill Nighy's Saint-Germain.
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As you'd hope, the cast once again does well to breathe life into these animated characters. Armitage, Reynoso, James Callis (Alucard), just to name a few do a great job at continuing to make figures we've come to be familiar with remain interesting to follow.
And then there's the visuals and the art style, which is once again brilliant. The show does a great job at capturing the gore and horror of the world, yet still manages to effectively display emotion, both of the main cast but also of the regular humans that litter the gruesome world. The fast-paced, action-packed fighting also delivers some of the most visually striking scenes we've even seen in the series as well, and we've seen some truly remarkable ones since the very beginning, for example Dracula's siege and destruction of Targoviste to kick off the entire show.
But, is this a fitting conclusion to a fan-favourite and well critically-received show? Absolutely. I'll refrain from sharing any spoilers, but just know, you can expect an end that lives up to the hype the series has managed to generate, an end that manages to tie up pretty much every plot line that the show has ever explored, and it does so in a engaging manner through and through. If I was being picky, I'd like to see the show explore the brutal Castlevania nature a little more, as without trying to spoil anything, the ending is a little too "fairytale" in places for my liking.
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Still, with all of this being said, Castlevania season four has given us a worthy ending to a truly great show. Trevor, Sypha, and Alucard's stories are all over, thanks to this being the final season in the series. And, while I personally will miss seeing this dynamic trio facing down against the hordes of evil, this conclusion will leave you satisfied and happy that it wasn't exhausted for material in the same way that so many other TV series has suffered. We do at the very least have a spinoff series to look forward to at some point, although with Netflix denying that it will be a straight spinoff, we probably won't be seeing anymore of Belmont and crew anytime soon. And you know what, I'm completely fine with that.