Alba Baptista is a young and rising Portuguese actress who has recently gained international fame for her role as Ciri in the Netflix series The Witcher. While many fans have praised her acting skills and screen presence, Baptista has also faced some backlash and hate online from a vocal minority.
In this article, we’ll explore some of the main reasons why some people seem to dislike Alba Baptista and the controversy surrounding her.
Her Rapid Rise to Fame
One of the primary reasons why Alba Baptista has detractors is that her rise to fame in Hollywood has been remarkably quick. Before being cast as Ciri in The Witcher in 2019, Baptista was relatively unknown outside of Portugal.
She landed the coveted role with little previous experience at the young age of 22. Some believe she didn’t deserve or earn the high-profile role and see her as an “overnight success” story.
“She came out of nowhere and landed a lead part on a major Netflix show. Many actors work for years without getting such a big break.”
This rapid catapult into the spotlight has led to accusations that she is undeserving of the success. However, Baptista has spoken out stating she worked hard and went through an extensive audition process to get the part.
Perceived Lack of Emotion in Her Acting
Another common criticism of Alba Baptista is that her acting can come across as stilted, wooden, or lack emotional depth.
Some viewers felt she delivered her lines poorly and failed to connect with the character she was portraying. Her on-screen chemistry with other cast members has also been called into question.
“I find her acting one-note. She doesn’t show much range or immerse herself in the role. Her line delivery falls flat.”
However, acting is a subjective art form. Other fans believe she encapsulated Ciri well and brought the right combination of strength and vulnerability to the character. More seasons of The Witcher will test if she can silence her acting critics.
Backlash for Replacing Original Actress
When Alba Baptista was cast as Ciri, some backlash originated from fans of the original actress chosen for the role – Rhianna McGreevy.
McGreevy was initially hired for the part and completed some early filming. But showrunners later decided to go in a different direction and recast the role with Baptista.
“I think it was unfair that they fired the original Ciri actress and brought in someone new. Alba gets blamed for taking her place.”
While recasting happens relatively often in TV and movies, some fans felt the original actress should have been given more of a chance to develop the role. This built some resentment from fans against Baptista for factors outside of her control.
Perceived as a Diversity Hire
A small subsection of critics have complained that Alba Baptista was only hired as Ciri due to her ethnic background, as she is of Brazilian descent.
In the book series, Ciri is described as having pale skin and ashen hair whereas Baptista has a more diverse look. Some believe the showrunners prioritized diversity over staying faithful to the source material.
“They only cast her because she’s non-white. It’s just checkbox diversity that ruins the adaptation.”
However, the showrunners have defended their choice by saying they chose the best actress for the part regardless of look. Baptista’s talent superseded superficial concerns. Most fans agree and have embraced the new interpretation of Ciri.
Intense Scrutiny Due to High Visibility Role
Alba Baptista stepped into the role of Ciri on one of Netflix’s biggest shows with an built-in audience and high expectations. She instantly had to deal with immense pressure and scrutiny that other lesser known actors avoid.
Every acting choice, line delivery, expression, and movement faced intense analysis from fans and critics worldwide. This level of scrutiny so early in her career has unfairly amplified any potential missteps or flaws in her performance.
“I couldn’t deal with millions of viewers criticizing my every scene. The pressure on her must be insane.”
More experienced actors have struggled with the demands of such a high-visibility role. While Baptista has made some mistakes, she has handled the pressure admirably well for someone so early in their career.
Difficulty Separating Actor from Character
Due to the complexities of Ciri’s character in The Witcher, some audience members conflate feelings about the character with feelings toward Alba Baptista herself.
Ciri can be headstrong, impatient, and make poor decisions that frustrate viewers. Some wrongly transfer their dislike of Ciri’s behavior to Baptista’s acting skills or personality.
“I can’t stand Ciri’s attitude. She’s so annoying and reckless. I don’t like Alba after seeing her in the role.”
However, an actor should not be faulted for portraying a flawed character convincingly. Baptista has succeeded in bringing the role to life as intended. Audiences must remember to separate fiction from reality.
Dislike of Her Youth and Attractiveness
Unfortunately, jealousy also plays a role in some of the vitriol directed at Alba Baptista. She is a young, talented, attractive actress succeeding in a highly competitive industry.
Her youth, beauty, and “It girl” status among fans breeds resentment from some who are quick to tear down rising stars. There is a tendency to seek out flaws and make harsh judgments of young actresses that feeds into wider misogynistic attitudes.
“She gets all this attention because she’s pretty and young. If she was plain and older, people wouldn’t care as much about her.”
But this reflects more poorly on her detractors than on Baptista herself. Baptista cannot control perceptions of her looks or age. What matters most is the dedication she brings to the craft of acting.
She is Still Early in Her Career
It is important to remember that Alba Baptista is still only 25 years old and at the start of her acting career. She has many years ahead of her to hone her skills with more roles and performances.
Very few actors deliver perfect, flawless performances right out the gate. Great talents tend to develop over time through experience. While she still has room to improve, Baptista has tremendous upside.
Pre-judging her entire career based on her first major Hollywood role is shortsighted. Her talent should continue to grow and silence doubters as she gains more experience. More mature roles will better showcase her acting range.
In summary, most of the backlash against Alba Baptista stems from unrealistic expectations, excessive scrutiny, and misplaced anger that does not reflect her actual abilities or character. As she continues along her acting path, she will likely earn respect from even her harshest critics.
Baptista has all the raw tools to become an A-list star with the right opportunities and guidance. For now, fans should tune out the noise and negativity surrounding Baptista and judge her performance in The Witcher strictly on its own merits. She remains one of the most promising young actresses emerging today and deserves patience and support.
Frequently Asked Questions
What was Alba Baptista’s biggest acting role before The Witcher?
Before being cast as Ciri in The Witcher, Alba Baptista was best known for her roles in Portuguese shows like Filha da Lei, A Impostora, and Jogo Duplo. She had limited international acting experience.
What criticism do people have of Alba Baptista’s portrayal of Ciri?
Some common criticisms are that her acting appears wooden or emotionless, her line delivery is stilted, she lacks chemistry with other cast members, and she fails to immerse herself fully in Ciri’s character.
Why did some fans dislike Alba Baptista replacing the original Ciri actress?
Rhianna McGreevy was originally cast as Ciri and had filmed some early scenes. When showrunners recast the role with Baptista instead, some fans felt it was unfair to the original actress who lost the part.
How has Alba Baptista responded to criticism of her acting skills?
In interviews, Baptista has acknowledged she is still improving and learning but believes she worked hard to portray Ciri as accurately as possible. She focuses on director feedback over Internet criticism to grow as an actor.
What are some positive qualities of Alba Baptista’s portrayal of Ciri?
Many praise her youthful energy, dynamic fight scenes, emotionally resonant vulnerable moments, determination, and range she shows as Ciri transforms over the first season. Her acting potential is clearly evident.