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Recap / Castlevania 2017 S 1 E 1 Witchbottle

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Wallachia, 1455: a young woman named Lisa arrives at a massive castle, led to this strange locale by the rumors of the scientific knowledge contained therein. Upon entering the castle, she is greeted by its master: Vlad Dracula Tepes. Lisa explains that she is studying to be a doctor, often thought of among her own people as a witch, who wishes to use the knowledge contained in the castle to help her people. Vlad asks what Lisa had to offer in exchange for his knowledge, to which Lisa explains that she does not believe Vlad to have traveled much, even though his scientific wonder of a castle could move across the land. She offers to travel the world with him, so he can live like humans do.


Vlad comes to respect Lisa for her wit and cunning, and Lisa respects Vlad for his intelligence. The two fall in love and marry... but alas, theirs is a star-crossed love: twenty years later, the church finds Lisa's studies and scientific instruments, accuses her of witchcraft, and sentences her to burn at the stake. With her dying breath, Lisa beseeches her love to not give in to the same hatred born of ignorance as other humans...

Dracula returns to Wallachia on the night that she dies, learning about her fate from a neighbor who detested the injustice brought against her and is instead visiting her burnt house to pay her respects. Dracula had walked the earth as Lisa suggested to better understand humans... but there was no understanding the selfsame creatures whose ignorance claimed her life. He warns Lisa's neighbor to take her family and flee from Wallachia before vanishing in flames before her.


As Lisa's body crumbles to ash, Dracula's visage appears in the flames that took her life. With his one reason for tolerating humanity gone, he tells the people of Wallachia to make peace with their Lord, for in one year, he will return to purge all human life from the land.

As Dracula prepares to spend the next year gathering a legion of demons from the depths of hell, his son, Adrian, approaches him, begging him to reconsider his course of action and not condemn innocents to die. Dracula refuses: as far as he is concerned, the people's inaction contributed to Lisa's death. Alucard is determined to stop his father, and the two fight viciously...

One year later, the archbishop of the church speaks to his congregation at Targoviste, celebrating the death of a witch. As he claims the warnings of the "devil" were empty threats, the skies darken, and blood rains from the sky, along with unborn hellspawns. Dracula's visage appears in the sky, condemning the people for their callousness before beginning his genocidal campaign: those who aren't killed by the flames beckoning his castle are viciously slaughtered by his demonic army. Not a single man, woman, or child is spared.


Dracula orders his legion to spread out through Wallachia and continue their genocide of humanity...Meanwhile, in a tavern, a man drinks as the other patrons rant about the state of the world, which they claim was brought upon by the likes of a clan known as the Belmonts...

Tropes for this episode include:

  • Deliberate Values Dissonance: Her interests in practical medicine and science gets Lisa burned as a witch.
  • Interspecies Romance: Between Vlad and Lisa. It doesn't end well.
  • Love at First Sight: A downplayed and implied example, given Dracula's smile during his exchange with Lisa near the end of their meeting onscreen.
    Lisa: They won't live such short, scared lives if they have real medicine. They won't be superstitious of how the real world works.
    Dracula: [Chuckling] Why should I do that?
    Lisa: To make the world better. Start with me, and I'll start with you.
    Dracula: [Now bowing] I think I might like you.
  • Morality Chain: Lisa inspires Dracula's desire to travel, so he travels like a man. When he comes back, he finds out that Lisa was killed, so he unleashes Hell on Earth for revenge.
  • New Era Speech: Dracula gives one of these to the demons ravaging Targoviste, signaling the beginning of his war against mankind.
    Dracula: Kill everything you see. Kill them all! And once Targoviste has been turned into a graveyard for my love, go forth into the country. Go now! Go to all the cities of Wallachia: Arges! Severin! Gresit! Chilia! Enisara! Go now, and kill! Kill for my love! Kill, for the only true love I ever knew. Kill, for the endless lifetime of hate before me.
  • Pet the Dog: In what he describes as his last act of kindness, Dracula warns Lisa's neighbor (the one who came to pay respect to her memory) to take her family and flee Wallachia before he destroys it.
  • Playing with Fire: When he discovers that his wife was killed, he disappears in a pillar of fire. He then manifests his face in the same pyre used to murder his wife, warning the townsfolk that he will take revenge on them all within a year.
  • Rain of Blood: Just as the Archbishop mocks Dracula's threats as lies from the Devil, storm clouds come and it is suddenly raining drops of blood.
  • Too Good for This Sinful Earth: Even while burning at the stake, Lisa pleads to Dracula (who is not present) not to blame her killers, as they don't understand medicine.
  • Vampires Hate Garlic: Apparently not the case in this universe, as Lisa mentioned having roasted garlic for lunch when speaking with Vlad (not out of superstition, but because it was what was available to eat), and he certainly had no trouble being around her.

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