‘The Witcher’ Season 2: Nivellen’s Story Is Reminding Fans of ‘Beauty and the Beast’, From the Castle to the Tub

The storyline and characters in Andrzej Sapkowski’s The Witcher book series are heavily inspired by folklore, legends, and classic tales. In The Witcher Season 2, Nivellen has an eerie resemblance to another well-known beast. Fans cannot help but compare Nivellen’s story in episode 1 to the tale of Beauty and the Beast.

From the monstrous face, the castle, and even Ciri, The Witcher paid homage to the beloved tale with a dark twist.

[Spoiler alert: This article contains spoilers for The Witcher Season 2.]

Nivellen in 'The Witcher' Season 2 'Beauty & The Beast' reference at the dinner table.
Nivellen in ‘The Witcher’ Season 2, Episode 1 | via Netflix

Who is Nivellen in ‘The Witcher’ Season 2 and the books?

Nivellen is introduced in the first episode of the season. Ciri and Geralt need a place to stay away from the snow for the night. In Sapkowski’s work, Geralt first meets Nivellen in “A Grain of Truth” from The Last Wish. The episode has Nivellen try and attack Geralt when they arrive until they realize they are friends.

According to Nivellen’s past with Geralt, Nivellen’s father hired the witcher to take care of an infestation in the woods. Nivellen was weak and wanted to prove himself to his father as a young boy. When Nivellen almost gets killed by a monster, Geralt saves him. Geralt gives Nivellen the monster’s head to give to his father.

Nivellen’s story took a turn when he revealed to Geralt how he became a beast. He and a group of men trashed the Temple of the Lionheaded Spider and was cursed as a punishment. Fans soon realized that Nivellen’s story and small details correlate to the Beast from Beauty and the Beast.

Nivellen has a twisted and dark version of the Beast’s story in ‘The Witcher’ Season 2

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According to Distractify, Nivellen’s story parallels Gabrielle-Suzanne de Villeneuve’s classic fairy tale, Beauty and the Beast, and the Disney movie. The most obvious comparison is with Nivellen. The beast and Nivellen were once handsome young men cursed after betraying a witch or supernatural entity. Their curse turns them into a hairy beasts, and left to live a life of solitude.

The only way to lift the curse is a selfless act and true love. But for Nivellen, his true love must also face a bloody death. In Beauty and the Beast, the Beast’s curse is lifted when Belle confesses her love as he is dying. But Nivellen’s has a darker element.

Nivellen was cursed after he assaulted a temple priestess. As a beast, he finds a Bruxa named Vereena in the forest. He falls in love with her despite her murderous habits. In the end, Geralt kills Vereena, and Nivellen’s curse is broken.

Fans might notice the way Vereena is killed resembles how Beast was almost killed in the Disney movie. As Vereena confesses her love for Nivellen, Geralt kills her from behind. Beast confesses to Belle in the movie, and Gaston sneaks up from behind and stabs the Beast.

Small details in ‘The Witcher’Season 2, Episode 1 parallel ‘Beauty and the Beast’

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Nivellen’s overall story in The Witcher Season 2 is not the only tie to the famous fairytale. There are a few setting similarities. Nivellen lives in a secluded desolate castle away from the village. It is also important to mention, The Witcher Season 2 copies the opening scene of a snow-covered entrance like the Disney movie.

Besides Geralt’s infamous bathtub scene, Nivellen’s gold bathtub has a shocking resemblance to the one the Beast uses in the movie. Disney fans remember the scene where Belle is given a stunning gown to change into. In The Witcher Season 2, Ciri leaves the tub to find a white embellished dress for her to wear.

Instead of the overall castle, its employees having magical powers, the Netflix series only gives Nivellen magic. He can manifest anything out of thin air.