It was quite the surprise when major streaming service Netflix first announced months ago that they were planning to adapt the “Castlevania” video game series from Konami into an animated series. However, a lot of the disquiet over the concept was put at ease when a trailer for the online program was shown last May.

A combination of strong visuals, atmospheric soundtrack and stellar voice cast – many of whom were in Peter Jackson’s “The Hobbit” trilogy. More positive reactions came in when “Castlevania” became available on stream. About the only significant criticism of the series was that, at four episodes, the story was rather short and incomplete.

Good thing then that Netflix simultaneously announced that a second season was in the works.

The adventure continues

At the same time that “Castlevania”, produced by Adi Shankar through the Frederator and Powerhouse Animation Studios, was released for streaming last Friday, July 7, Netflix also approved a second season of the animated series for release several months from now.

Even better, while the inaugural season of “Castlevania” was rather short at only four 30-minute episodes, the next one will double the count to eight episode of the same length. Season 2 will, of course, continue the storyline cut short at the finale, wherein the protagonists have merely gathered and were preparing to go on their journey.

Castlevania” is based on the Konami video game series of the same name.

Specifically, it adopts and expands upon the events of the third game, “Castlevania III: Dracula’s Curse” which was released in 1989 (Japan) and 1990 (US). While the franchise largely chronicles the adventures of several generations of the vampire-hunting Belmont family in their quest to destroy the genocidal Count Dracula, the game and the animation focus on Trevor Belmont, chronologically the first in the lineage to directly confront him accompanied by several companions with their own grievances against the Lord of Darkness.

Heavyweight creators

Netflix and Adi Shankar have managed to put together a dream production team to bring “Castlevania” to the stream. The show’s anime-style design is impressive considering the main animation studio, Frederator, is known more for kiddie fare such as “Fairly Odd-Parents.”

The series stars “Hobbit” alumni Richard Armitage (Thorin Oakenshield) and Graham McTavish (Gwalin) as protagonist Trevor Belmont and Dracula respectively.

Also lending their voices are Alejandra Reynoso (“G.I.Joe: Renegades”) as Sypha Belnades, James Callis (“Battlestar Galactica”) as Dracula’s son Alucard, and Emily Swallow (“Supernatural”) as Lisa Tepes.

Both writer Warren Ellis and director Sam Deats will carry on in the production of “Castlevania” season 2, while Shankar is going to make time to tackle the development of a new video game Netflix adaptation in the “Assassin’s Creed” series.

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