Castlevania: Season 4 (Netflix) – Series Review
Follow Genre: Animation, Action, Adventure
Distributor: Netflix
Episodes: 10
Duration: approx. 30 min (per episode)

Castlevania: Season 4 (Netflix) – Series Review

Site Score
Good: Everything! From character development, dialogues and plot conclusion to the explosive yet beautiful action scenes
Bad: Ending feels a bit too neat and well-explained for the audience's sake
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(1 votes)
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Rating: 9.0/10 (1 vote cast)

In recent years the cinematographic industry discovered a new golden ticket, following that of comic book heroes: video games with enough content to become movies and series in their own right. And so, a river of adaptations started flowing, with very mixed results. From the commercial success of titles such as Resident Evil and Tomb Raider to the less accomplished Street Fighter and Hitman adaptations, we thought we had seen it all. However, 2017’s Netflix’s series adaptation of the iconic Konami video game series Castlevania raised the bar again.

Castlevania premiered in 2017 on Netflix, by the hand of Warren Ellis, best known as the co-creator of comic book series such as Transmetropolitan and Red (later adapted into two theatrical movies). This new animated series loosely adapts the 1990’s video game series of the same title, following the adventures of monster hunter Trevor Belmont (Richard Armitage) and his fight against his biggest foe, Dracula (Graham McTavish). He is joined by a colorful cast of characters including Dracula’s half-human son, Alucard (James Callis), and Sypha Belnades (Alejandra Reynoso), a member of the order of Speakers who also has control over the elements.

With season 4, Castlevania’s story finally comes to an end, as Netflix announced this season would be the last of the show (until further notice). The first episode lets us jumps back into action, following Trevor and Sypha in their pilgrimage through Wallachia to fight the night creatures and other terrors roaming free since Dracula was sent to hell. Their efforts often feel futile, as they encounter humans in trouble in one way or another everywhere they go. Nonetheless, something seems to be stirring them forward; an unconscious feeling that soon becomes an upsetting suspicion: something or someone is pulling the strings of the world in an attempt to bring Dracula and his wife back.

Meanwhile, Alucard is still back at his castle, suffering endless loneliness after the hurtful betrayal by the siblings last season. He still wants to fulfill his promise of keeping the legacy of both his father’s work and the Belmont’s Hold alive, but his thoughts are growing more bitter and distant by the day. Unexpectedly, he receives a strange visitor with a plea and is faced with a hard decision. Does he want to emerge out of his solitude and back into humanity, or is it better to remain among the spiked heads at the front gate, that worked so well for his old man?

Back in Styria, trouble is stirring within Hector (Theo James), who is now bounded to Lenore (Jessica Brown Findlay), and events are set in motion by the four ambitious vampire queens in their quest to conquer the world. It will take a little while longer for us to glimpse what is going on with Isaac (Adetokumboh M’Cormack), Dracula’s most loyal Forgemaster, who we last saw taking on an army of mindless grunts, taking over an entire city, adding more demons to his own army.

In a season filled with exciting moments, we are finally allowed to watch the full extent of our beloved characters’ powers unfold, as they fight forces that seem so much stronger than they are. Every episode is packed with action and events steering the plot towards its ultimate climax, in an unusual change to the series’ often calm pacing. This does not mean, however, that the philosophical dialogues the series has accustomed us to were neglected. There is still a lot of dialogue and many wise reflections on what motivates the actions of all of us; from a sense of purpose to an endless search for power, all in the name of the values we hold most dear.

Here is where Castlevania really shines; beneath all its gore, the suffering inflicted on every character episode after episode, and the many times we hear Trevor say “fuck”, we are granted a glimpse into something deeply unique to our human condition. Ranging from our search for companionship and a place among our peers, a safe place to call home; to redemption from our past mistakes while searching for self-agency, we are all going through some kind of inner struggle, which is not so clearly visible to others. All these topics are represented by all the characters that pass the revue.

In this final season of Castlevania, the character arcs that have been developing since season 1 finally conclude in a very satisfactory manner befitting the character’s history, aided by great voice performances. There are epic battle scenes of exquisite beauty, playing on the bleak color palettes that characterize the series, and memorable moments consolidating the different and nuanced relationships we saw growing – including twists and turns, a surprising reunion, and the eagerly awaited confrontation between Isaac and Hector.

The only thing we could fault on this otherwise perfect finale is its desire to end every plot path with a very neat and well-explained final touch, forcing some narrative choices along the way, and slightly dragging the conclusion of the story in the last episode. We cannot help but feel that, in such a daring title, which was never afraid of shocking or upsetting us with brutal twists (we all still remember episode 9 of season 3, who could ever forget it), there is no need to ensure everyone sees a clear-cut ending to satisfy the audience.

Possible extras for a physical release of this fourth season that we would like to see include a sneak-peak behind the scenes, a chance to get to know the voices behind the characters, and an interview with Warren Ellis. The latter could tell us the reasons motivating his choice of turning this specific franchise into a series, and some of the narrative choices that were made during the creative process. Finally, any physical release would not be complete without access to some of the series’ gorgeous concept art.


Castlevania is the living (sometimes undead) proof that amazing content can be created while having a videogame as inspiration, contrary to many of the TV series and movie adaptations we have seen of late. Using the canvas of the game for style and ambiance, more than for its content, which is recreated here from scratch, it achieves the goal of providing us with a very entertaining animated series, while also giving unexpectedly deep food for thought. This final season wraps it all up in a blaze of glory, leaving us wanting for more. Following the series’ success, Netflix might just decide to give us precisely that; as rumor circulates of the company working on another title set in the same universe.

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Rating: 9.0/10 (1 vote cast)
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Castlevania: Season 4 (Netflix) - Series Review, 9.0 out of 10 based on 1 rating

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