Night Watch (novel)

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The following article has been approved for publishing because it serves the cause of the Light.
Night Watch
The following article has been approved for publishing because it serves the cause of the Dark.
Day Watch

Night Watch (Ночной дозор, Nochnoi Dozor) is a book series by Sergey Lukyanenko, a Speculative Fiction writer internationally acclaimed in the Eastern Bloc. It had two movie adaptations (both movies mixed elements of this book and its sequel) starring Konstantin Khabensky, the first of which became the top-grossing Russian movie of the time. Because of this, the series received much attention internationally and spread Lukyanenko's name and work to the West.

Night Watch is set in Moscow in 1998-2007 (book timeline) / circa 2004 (movie timeline). The world is pretty much the gritty ex-Communist concrete-a-thon we know and love, with a major difference. There are Others. Others are non-humans, born by humans and have special abilities. Vampires, shapeshifters, wizards, prophets, warlocks... and all others. What distinguishes Others from humans is their innate ability to manipulate "The Twilight", a "mirror-world" of magical energy. Others come in two flavors, Light and Dark, and the Light and Dark have been conflicting since the beginning of time. In the 12th century or so, the Others from both sides realized that conflicts between them, due to their vast power and influence over humans, could destroy the world. So they wrote and signed the Treaty, which basically states that each side is allowed to form a Watch to monitor the activities of the other side from becoming overly excessive, in turn monitored by a joint Inquisition. The Treaty has held up well, and all fighting between Light and Dark has moved into the shadows.


  • Night Watch follows the livings and doings of Light magician Anton Gorodetskiy, an Moscow Night Watch operative working under the Great Light magician Geser.
  • Day Watch follows three different Dark Others, with several Night Watch characters appearing as recurring antagonists. It was co-written by Sergey Lukyanenko and Vladimir Vasilyev
  • Twilight Watch follows Anton Gorodetskiy as he tries to protect his daughter, a potential Light Messiah, while looking for a magic book that can turn mundane humans into Others.
  • Face of the Dark Palmira follows the livings and doings of members of the Kievan Day Watch visiting St. Petersburg. The book was written by Vladimir Vasilyev with Sergey Lukyanenko's blessings. Twilight Watch and Face of the Dark Palmira take place in the same time period, and events of one book refer to those in the other (and vice versa) - though the plots never truly connect.
  • The Last Watch written by Sergey Lukyanenko because he wanted to prove that the fame hasn't gone to his head and he could write a book within a year without distractions getting in the way. Wraps up some loose trends from the previous books, lampshades and homages the movie adaptation a few times and wraps up the events in the closest thing the series can have to the Grand Finale.
  • Nevertheless, the fifth book was released in 2012, titled The New Watch.

Aside from the movie adaptations, the book inspired a surprisingly interesting (if badly animated, buggy and poorly acted) PC game, a MMORG and a board game, not to mention the usual merchandising crap.

Tropes used in Night Watch (novel) include:
  • Affably Evil: Zabulon may be the head of the Moscow Day Watch (making him incredibly powerful, several centuries old, and probably the most ruthless and dangerous Dark Other in the former Soviet Union) and the sworn enemy of the Night Watch in general and Geser in particular, but he is generally polite and friendly to everyone, seems to have a certain fondness for Anton, generally acts as though he is enjoying himself immensely, and regards Geser as a beloved rival (it is even implied in Twilight Watch that part of the reason that neither Geser or Zabulon have advanced beyond the rivalries of the Watches is because they enjoy playing out their rivalry). It's mentioned somewhere that Zabulon is nearly a millennium old. And he remarks to Gesar that he had dreamed that they would one day work together, during the climax of Twilight Watch. While giggling in a slightly less-than-sane way.
  • Alternate Continuity: The films, as expressly stated near the beginning of The Last Watch. One of the characters retells as a dream one of the most random and over-the-top scenes in the movies, which he dismisses as an alternate reality -- there's more than a hint of a Take That, too. There is also the PC game adaptation, which basically throws the book and movie continuities into a blender.
  • And I Must Scream
    • The spell that the Inquisitors suggest that Anton use to defeat the ultimate vampire Kostya, is called the Sarcophagus of Ages. It locks the victim and the caster in said sarcophagus together until the end of the universe.)
    • White Haze, a spell referred to in the Last Watch, essentially made a whole opposing army into the stone statues... while leaving everyone alive and conscious. They've spent four millennia like that. White Haze was also the spell Geser suggested in the above-mentioned duell.
  • Anti-Villain
    • Kostya in Twilight Watch.
    • Arguably Edgar and Genady in The Last Watch.
    • Even more arguably Tiger/the Twilight in The New Watch.
  • Badass Family: The Gorodetsky family.
  • Balance Between Good and Evil
  • Being Good Sucks
  • Being Evil Sucks
  • Black Comedy Rape/Rape as Redemption: To an extent in Day Watch as seen in Alisa's revenge on a group of guys who were going to rape her is to force them at gunpoint to perform sex acts on each other. That being said, the completely cold and callous way in which she does this ensures that while it's hard to sympathize with them, she doesn't come across as justified in doing so either. She even mentions that it's not as good as gay porn she once watched with the other witches.
  • Cheerful Child: Nadya
  • Contemplate Our Navels: A particularly tedious string of long conversations in the third part of the book about morality and the Light and Dark, etc.
  • Content Warnings: Made In-Universe -- Night Watch, the first book, opens with a note that its text was approved for publishing by both Night and Day Watches; on the other hand, Day Watch has a note that it has not been approved by either; Dusk Watch is "indifferent" to both; Face of the Dark Palmira has "no comment" from both (while the Inquisition states that "it's silent [on the matter], as always") and The Last Watch is "acceptable" for both.
  • Creator Provincialism: Lukyanenko spent much of his adult life in Moscow, so it's not surprising that it's the main setting of the books. On the other hand he was born in Kazakhstan, and Central Asian motifs often show up in the novels.
  • Cultural Cross-Reference: Many to western popular music and literature. Also, a surprising one to anime in Day Watch, in which a witch named Alita wears a Battle Angel Alita T-shirt.
  • Dark Is Not Evil: Stated often, shown... not so much.
    • The main idea seems to be that Dark Others value personal freedom over anyone's well-being, whereas the Light Others see it the other way around. Things get shady when it becomes apparent that personal freedom of a powerful mage comes at the cost of freedoms of less powerful mages and, eventually, humans, but the Dark Others are encouraged not to give a damn. Which doesn't really work. On a side note, Light Others are constantly faced with the dilemma of "killing a thousand to save a million".
    • Day Watch shows the most of how Dark Others are not necessarily evil, or even bad, and provides insight into their perspective. It is true that most of the Dark Ones shown are quite evil, but since most of the stories are told from the perspective of the Night Watch, most of the Dark Ones encountered will be criminals or high-ranking members of the Day Watch (who will be the most ruthless and powerful, as well as the oldest -- when you've lived several centuries, you want to explore as many pleasures as possible). In Twilight Watch we also see a werewolf who initiated several children in order to save them from a terminal illness.
    • The novels show that a lot of minor Dark Others aren't evil -- the above-mentioned werewolf, and earlier, the dark ones Maxim killed, and such, but it also shows that the rank-and-file ones in the Day Watch are happy to engage in cruel acts of child murder, or rape. And in two novels, dark ones attempted to nuke Moscow. When light ones kill people, or do something too bad it's usually accidental - if they kill someone on purpose unjustly they often dematerialize themselves (dying by disintegration) because they feel so guilty that they lose the will to live.
    • The important difference between Light and Dark Others is that the Light Others are perfectly aware of the human vice and ignorance, while Dark Others consider their power a gift that is to be used. This explains why low-ranking Dark Others tend to use their powers for granted while high-ranked ones consider it an asset that has to be invested wisely. Light Others are taught from the beginning that the power corrupts and if not controlled, it may destroy its bearer (it is also the recurring theme in Night Watch and a part of Zabulon's Evil Plan in Day Watch).
  • A Day in the Limelight: In Day Watch, the first part had as its narrator the secondary character Alisa, and the second part's narrator was a new character Vitaliy.
  • Defector From Decadence: the Dark Other Edgar leaves the Day Watch and joins the Inquisition because of his disgust for all of the machinations in both of the watches. It's not exactly a Heel Face Turn, but it cements him as sort of a Friendly Enemy / Enemy Mine to Anton.
  • Dropped a Bridge on Him: Tiger Cub's death in Day Watch is described almost casually. Which is normal if you consider that the narrator is Vitaliy, a powerful Dark Other (sort of...) who had never met Tiger Cub before and killed her in self-defence.
  • Eagle Land: Lukyanenko always was and still is rather strongly anti-American, and isn't afraid to show it.
    • In Day Watch, a low-level American Air Force officer is introduced on holiday in Prague. He's a member of the Light and was involved in the bombing of Kosovo. Russian Night Watch members are very surprised he's still aligned with good.
    • There's also the issue when the Dark Other Edgar asks another American about spiritual experiences (Edgar's gearing up for a Hannibal Lecture), the American responds by citing a sports victory, essentially proving himself Too Dumb to Fool.
    • In Twilight Watch, one character has a shirt showing a Russian soldier killing an American with a message about who really won World War Two; Anton finds it somewhat amusing.
  • Enemy Mine: The Watches work together when battling Kostya.
  • Even Evil Has Standards: In The Last Watch, Arina, now a light one, stops her co-conspirator from using a nuclear bomb in their plan. She assures him that even when she was a dark one she would have done the same.
  • Evil Counterpart: The Dark protagonists of Day Watch, Alisa, Vitaly, and Edgar, all present interesting counterparts to Anton's personality.
  • Evil Redhead: Alisa Donnikova
  • Fantastic Racism: Both the Light and Dark have contempt for vampires and werewolves, with the Dark seeing them mostly as useful pawns and the Light tending to assume they are Exclusively Evil, since the Others who become them tend to be the type who would go for eating innocents. Interestingly enough, both groups provide examples of rare Dark Is Not Evil Dark Others. Not exactly Exclusively Evil but rather too animalistic to be considered proper humans. In the case of vampires, they may also turn people into new vampires who, without proper initiation and guidance may turn into real monsters (as shown in the first part of Day Watch). The same thing can happen with werewolves. Vampires and werewolves are the only Others who can turn humans into their kind (until Twilight Watch, that is).
  • The Film of the Book
  • For the Evulz: Light Others are generally prone to seeing Dark Others like that. Dark Others tend to be more pragmatic though. At some point, the Night Watch determines that a group of Dark Others are trying to resurrect an ancient and powerful Dark Other and confront the Day Watch over it. The Dark Others balk at the suggestion, wondering why anyone would resurrect a certifiably insane Dark Other who would be of no use in politics and would probably turn himself into a dragon and burn down a few cities before getting shot down by human jets.
  • Foreign Money Is Proof of Guilt: In Day Watch, Vitaly discovers that his bag is full of dollars and immediately thinks he's up to something illegal.
  • Four Eyes, Zero Soul: Zabulon
  • Fridge Brilliance: Vampires are shown to be intolerant to alcohol - getting splashed with it results in burns. Perhaps that's the reason they do not drink... wine?
  • Friendly Neighbourhood Vampires: Anton himself was friends with a family of vampires who lived in the apartment next to his until he killed a vampire in the line of duty.
  • Fun Personified: Las
  • Fur Against Fang: Completely averted as both werewolves and vampires are considered the dregs of the magical world.
  • The Evils of Free Will: The Night Watch would deny it, but they don't have much of an answer as to what they'll do to evil people if they ever create the utopia they desire, and there's a strong implication of Heel Face Mind Screw. There is, in fact, a heavy implication that the Light others can never "win" because their victory condition is every human and other freely choosing light over darkness. One of their attempts to put this into practise, communism, was started using mind control potions to force people to freely chose light.
  • Happily Married: Anton and Svetlana in books 3-4.
  • Headphones Equal Isolation: Anton is almost invariably listening to music on his headphones while on duty, and he explains that he does this because his ability to interact with the Twilight makes the world seem unreal to him, and the music helps keep him sane.
  • Glamour Failure: Vampires can make themselves appear invisible to humans (then again, almost every Other can). However, if a human looks into a mirror, then the effect of the spell is broken (although, only for as long as they're looking into the mirror). This is the opposite of the typical vampire lore.
  • Good Is Not Nice
    • Anton is anything but a nice person at times. In fact, sometimes he comes across as a complete Jerkass. This is, in fact, pointed out by Zabulon. (To paraphrase) "I've seen your true form, Anton, and it was no knight in shining armor."
    • The Night Watch is considered good but Light Others can be as ruthless as any secret police (or more, given their powers). They also control population of vampires and sometimes authorize transformation and feeding on mundane people without any consent of the latter. This causes Igor to become disillusioned with the Night Watch.
    • The Night watch is also not above brainwashing humans in their social experiments. Olga was punished for sabotaging an attempt to make the normal people accept communism.
  • Good People Have Good Sex: Alisa in the second book, after falling in love with a Light Other and sleeping with him, mentions that it was the best and most amazing time she had ever had. It was also during the period of time when we saw her softening and turning... not good, just less Dark. This is partly because her previous lover, Zabulon, liked to do her in his demonic Twilight form. With a spiked penis.
  • Groin Attack: Anton to Edgar towards the end of The Last Watch.
  • Heel Face Turn: Arina. Dark Other in Twilight Watch, she becomes a Light Other in Final Watch. Subverted: her turn to the Light doesn't change neither her temper, nor her motives.
  • Historical In-Joke: Both Soviet Communism and Nazism were originally plots by the Light to swing everyone towards Good, which were corrupted by the Darkness.
  • Hot Witch: A number of characters fall into this, with a dash of Vain Sorceress, since both the Light and Dark have powers to maintain youth and good looks and avert aging. In the case of the Dark, they also achieve this affect through the use of glamour.
  • Knight Templar: Maxim, an uninitiated Light Other who kills Dark Others who aren't really that evil (including a werepanther that had only ever killed in self-defense and a Dark wizard out for a night on the town with his wife and child) He changed his views when he agreed to become an Inquisitor. Inquisition generally tends to do this to people.
  • Light Is Not Good
    • Maxim in Night Watch, who basically comes across as Light Yagami's Russian cousin. Also, you'd think that the Day Watch would be the organization of Light Others, but it is actually that of Dark Others.
    • There's one scene in Day Watch that mentions how the historical figure Gilles de Rais (a friend to Joan of Arc and a child murderer) as well as some fictional Serial Killer were both Light Others. Essentially, both fell into a combination of Pure Is Not Good and Utopia Justifies the Means -- both were effectively complete monsters, but since they didn't see their actions as wrong, their crimes had no effect on their alignment.
  • MacGuffin: The Chalk of Fate in Night Watch, an artifact that allows a Light Sorceress, whose Power Levels is "Beyond Categorization," to rewrite the fate of any individual.
  • MacGuffin Girl: Nadya, Anton and Svetlana's daughter and also a prospect Messiah of Light.
  • Mama Bear: Svetlana
  • Masquerade: The Treaty explicitly forbids revealing the Others' existence to normal humans, an act often punishable by death. There are, however, a few mortals who have stumbled onto the secrets of the Others on their own, and who are allowed to live.
  • Mathematician's Answer: In The Last Watch, a powerful vampire in disguise is spotted by an Other, who is a teacher on a field trip with his class of Other children. The vampire is trying to remain hidden and kills the teacher in front of his students. All the kids run away except for one. The vampire grabs him and asks, using a spell of truth, if the kid has been taught yet how to remember auras (an easy way of identifying Others). The kid honestly replies that he hasn't been. The vampire lets him go and leaves. The kid didn't lie, nobody taught him how to remember auras, but he has been practicing on his own. His memory of the aura is vague, though.
  • Mistaken for Gay: In the first novel, Anton is temporarily in Olga's body and goes out to dinner with Svetlana, his love interest. The combination of their body language around each other and Olga's short hair makes another character see them as a lesbian couple and react with disgust.
  • Muggles Do It Better: Nukes are the only weapons (except for some extremely powerful spells) that obliterate everything in the area in both the normal dimension and all Twilight layers, leaving the Others nowhere to run. Additionally, as shown in The Last Watch, remote-controlled guns can be extremely effective against the Others due to the fact that machines project no malice and can't be detected with magic. Enchanted guns are even more effective. There is a reason the Others are terrified of humans finding out about the existence of the Others. It would be the witch trials all over again. The first book also mentions the possibility of resurrecting an ancient and powerful Dark Other, who likes to appear as a giant dragon. It's mentioned he would go rampaging across Europe, not caring about the Grand Treaty. However, another character points out that, while devastating, said dragon would be no match for the modern human military. As the character puts it, in a battle between an angry dragon and helicopter gunships, he'd bet on the gunships.
  • Narrator: Anton in Night Watch, Twilight Watch and The Last Watch. For the two first parts of the second book, see A Day in the Limelight above, the third part averted this trope as it had no narrator.
  • Never Found the Body: Subverted. Anton believes that Kostya's body has never been found after the events of Twilight Watch and that he may be the new villain in Final Watch. However, Geser almost immediately reveals that Kostya's body was, indeed, recovered but this was kept secret from Anton because it was in a very bad condition and Anton was his friend, after all. There is a good chance of the body simply disintegrating during re-entry.
  • The New Russia: It isn't the most negative depiction, but there are a lot of references to the shady new money (with possible connections to The Mafiya) associated with this setting.
  • No Periods, Period: Somehow averted; Olga jokes about it when she magically switches bodies with Anton. He gets lucky though, it would have been one week later. Anton responds with his own deadpan joke, pointing out that every TV-watching man knows what to do with a tampon: put it in your fist and pour blue liquid on it.
  • No Such Thing as Wizard Jesus: Averted. Jesus was somehow connected to the Light, but it's unknown whether he was just an overpowered Light Other or Light itself.
  • Not So Different: A repeated theme is that the line between Light and Dark Others is very fine indeed.
  • Obfuscating Stupidity: Afandi, an elderly but weak magician from The Last Watch, "Part 2 - A Common Enemy"
  • One-Winged Angel: Both sets of the Others have a true form they create in the Twilight, and the Dark Others tend to go for the "snake demon" look.
  • Our Dragons Are Different: Fafnir is an ancient and powerful Dark Other, whose favorite Twilight form was that of a giant dragon. He is mentioned several times, and an artifact of his plays a key part in the first book. Since he predates the Grant Treaty, resurrecting him would be very bad for both the Light and the Dark Others.
  • Our Vampires Are Different
  • Our Werewolves Are Different
  • Pac-Man Fever: Generally averted. When video games are mentioned, they are treated as casual hobbies and the few games mentioned by name were indeed popular titles at the time of writing. The movie depicts them with reasonable realism as well.
    • Special mention goes to a scene in the second film where this appears intentionally. Zavulon is playing a fighting game. At some point, he holds and swings his phone like a sword and his movements are imitated in game. That was two years before the iPhone came out. But this game he plays is actually a vision of a possible future.
  • Power Levels: All Others are assigned "Categories", ranging from the seventh (the weakest) to first (the most powerful). Categories are not fixed, as an Other can advance or fall down a rank depending on how often they practice magic. There is also the so-called "peak condition" when a mage jumps up two or three levels during a time of great emotional stress, like it happens to Anton Gorodetsky in the end of the first book. Lastly, there is the Over Nine Thousand category called "Beyond Categorization". Depending on the power level, an Other can dive to the deeper levels of the Twilight. There are six Twilight levels (most mages never get past the third), and the seventh is our normal world, so the Twilight is basically a cycle. However, the full cycle can only be traversed by an ultimate mage, such as a Light Messiah like Nadya Gorodetskaya. Or Merlin, who becomes a permanent fixture as the story progresses. It is mentioned that the Others actually took the word "level" from video games, replacing the previously-used "rank".
  • Public Domain Character
    • Merlin is a major historical figure for Others.
    • Geser, head of the Moscow Night Watch, is based on a popular Central Asian folk hero by the same name.
    • The second film also briefly shows Tamerlane, the founder of the Timurid Empire, also seeking the Chalk of Fate.
    • Jesus is also mentioned, but it is unclear if he was just a really powerful Other (perhaps a zero-level, like Nadya or Merlin) or Light itself.
  • Purely Aesthetic Glasses: Ilya (in the book), Zabulon, some other Others. Since Others are able to restore eyesight and any Other who wants to can undergo this procedure, all Others who wear glasses do so of their own will.
  • Really Seven Hundred Years Old: Nearly all Others stop aging when initiated. There are some exceptions, but they usually use some form of illusion to make up for it.
  • The Reveal: Occurs multiple times in each book. The most notable example is the revelation at the end of Last Watch that the Twilight only has six levels, and that the seventh level is simply the real world.
  • Rewriting Reality: The Chalk of Fate.
  • Shout-Out
  • Song Fic
    • A rare usage in a published work: the first two novels contain many samples from contemporary Russian rock music to set the mood and illustrate the characters' philosophy, e.g. Valery Kipelov's song "I'm Free" is used extensively to exemplify the Dark Others' worldview. In fact, some characters suggest that Kipelov himself is an uninitiated Dark Other.
    • Even more prominent in the case of alternative-rock band Piknik known for their esoteric lyrics. The band leader, Edmund Shklarsky is also considered to be an uninitiated Other.
    • It is briefly mentioned that Rammstein are all werewolves.
  • Sophisticated As Hell / Precision F-Strike: In New Watch Anton describes the humongous fireball thrown at them: "It was a premium-class fireball, in terms of commercial managers. It was a Tzar-fireball, poetically speaking. A biologist would call it an Alpha-fireball. A very composed mathematician would note that it is a three meter-wide fireball. It was a "shit-your-pants-it's-so-scary" fireball!
  • Suspiciously Apropos Music: Anton, while listening to his mini-disc (later MP3) player. He always puts it on random, and often the song that pops up has something to do either with the story, or with his present state of mind.
    • This is referenced in the novel with Anton suspecting he might be unconsciously manipulating the player.
  • Take a Third Option
    • Anton does this regularly, it really is something of his modus operandi. This gets lampshaded when Anton decides that the only way to be certain that he isn't taking the option Zavulon wants him to take is to invent an entirely new and unpredictable one.
    • The whole trope is also repeatedly subverted from here to the far side of Moscow when it turns out that Zabulon, Gesar or whoever is stringing Anton around at that point in time specifically didn't mention the third option so that Anton would pick it.
  • Tome of Fate
  • Took a Level in Badass
    • Anton does this many times through the series.
    • His friend and Plucky Comic Relief, the punk rocker Las[1], tends to regularly end up together with him in those incidents that boost Anton's level and receive an upgrade too. He wasn't even the Other when he was first introduced, and ended up as a minor Night Watch official with third or fourth level.
  • The Backwards R: If you can read Russian, look at the movie poster... yeah.
  • The Chessmaster: Both Geser and Zavulon.
  • Urban Fantasy
  • Utopia Justifies the Means: The "dark side", so to speak, of the Night Watch, and the main argument the Light Watch uses against them. Even The Nazis came out of their attempts to change the world.
  • Vein-O-Vision
  • Villain Protagonist: Alissa in Day Watch and to a somewhat lesser extent the other Dark Other protagonists of the novel.
  • Wicked Witch: Played around with Arina. Her true form is a greatly aged crone and her depiction definitely evokes Baba Yaga. Edgar seems to be a male version (both seem to practice the same kind of magic), and his true form is likewise very aged. However, both are a subversion. Neither are that evil, and Anton notes how their true forms show this- many Dark Others become hideous demons in the Twilight, and so the fact that those two still look human speaks to their relative goodness.
  • Worthy Opponent: Alisa refers to Anton as this in Day Watch. She sees his act in the previous novel of draining others of happiness so that he could prevent himself from turning heel as the kind of selfish individualism that a Dark One should strive for.
  • Xanatos Roulette: The plots of the first two books were basically about Xanatos Roulettes by Moscow Night Watch and Day Watch, respectively, which usually lead to Gambit Pileup.

Aside from the tropes above, the movie adaptations contain examples of:[edit | hide | hide all]

  • The Alcoholic: Anton in the beginning of both movies. In the first one, he drinks a lot to pass the taste of blood he has to drink so he could chase vampires. In the second movie he drinks a little too much while reading about Tamerlane. He is poisoned in the end of the second movie, resulting in an extremely drunk behavior.
  • Apocalypse Maiden: In the first movie.
  • Beethoven Was an Alien Spy: Towards the beginning of Day Watch, Zavulon goes through a list of Russian celebrities. Some of them are explicitly stated to be Dark Others. Easy to miss for non-Russian audiences, as the list is in Russian and only appears on screen for a few seconds.
  • Bloodier and Gorier: Especcially how Anton defeats the vampires.
  • Cameo: Lots of Russian celebrities present and killed during Yegor's birthday party at the end of the second movie.
  • Cassandra Truth: When Anton tells a police officer he's been drinking blood.
  • Composite Character
    • In the movie, Bear's name is Ilya, while in the books, Bear and Ilya are two different people.
    • Also, the Inquisition, which is a rather big organization in the books, is reduced to two Creepy Twins in the second movie.
    • Film!Yegor seems to combine aspects of Yegor and Kostya in the novels. The Light/Dark conflict strains Anton's relationships with both characters and film!Yegor is introduced like his novel counterpart, but like Kostya in the novel, becomes a vampire. Further, Anton's introduction in the film in which he tries to purchase a spell to induce a miscarriage is taken from a Batman Cold Open in Day Watch (novel), in which it was done by a random woman, but Alissa in the novel also did this successfully.
  • Creepy Twins: The Inquisition in Day Watch.
  • Cultural Translation: In the Russian version, Yegor is watching a Russian cartoon that dealt with vampires. In the international version, the cartoon is replaced by an episode of Buffy the Vampire Slayer.
  • The Danza: Kostya's father Gennadiy is renamed to Valeriy in the movie. The actor's name is Valeriy Zolotukhin.
  • Drives Like Crazy: Semyon in Night Watch, Alisa in Day Watch.
  • Dummied Out: The scenes featuring Ignat, as well as the humorous scenes featuring a couple in the plane were removed from the international version of Night Watch.
  • Evil Diva: Alisa
  • Informed Ability: Tiger Cub says in Night Watch that Bear can shapeshift into a bear, but the latter is unwilling to do a demonstration.
  • In Name Only: Day Watch was not adapted from the book of the same title. While Night Watch was adapted from the first of three stories from the book Night Watch, Day Watch was adapted from the two others.
  • Painful Transformation: Olga
  • Painting the Fourth Wall: Done heavily in the English subtitled version. The subtitles themselves appeared as blood floating across the screen like it did in the pool at the beginning.
  • Product Placement: Oh, where to begin... blatant in the first movie, but better blended in in the second.
  • Reset Button: The ending of the second movie.
  • Slobs Versus Snobs: The Light Others all look like common people, and the Night Watch even wears blue-collar worker uniforms. Their vehicle of choice is a power grid repairman's truck. The Dark Others all look rich and beautiful.
  • Tagline: The Rusian tagline of Day Watch is "First movie of the year" (which, from Russian, can also be translated as "Movie number one of the year", as in the BEST movie). While it can seem pretentious, it is in fact to be taken literally: the movie's Russian premiere was on the 1st of January, 2006, at 3 a.m.
  • Take That: Night Watch broke every box office record in Russia since pretty much ever. By the time Day Watch was in mid-production, 9th Company (another Russian movie) surpassed that record. In Day Watch, Anton used bill boards as portals. At one point, he emerges from a 9th Company poster, ripping it apart. During the production, the creators of the movie expressed their hope for the movie to surpass 9th Company at the box-office. It did.
  • Time Stands Still: Geser does it.

Aside from above tropes, the video game adaptations contain examples of:[edit | hide]

  • Alternate Universe: The PC game was basically a combination of book and movie continuities. The character designs harken back to the movie, as does the usage of mundane items to do magic, but the characters can also use spells from the books and Twilight is closer to the way it was depicted in the books.
  • But Thou Must!: sort of. Your choices won't alter the major plot points, but they will make it easier (or harder) to achieve your mission objectives.
  • Capulet Counterpart: Anya, to Stas.
  • Immune to Bullets: Played with. Ordinary guns (and later machine guns) are surprisingly effective against the lower-level Others in the PC game. Not so much with the higher-powered others, but they still do damage, which can be useful when you and your enemy are out of mana.
  • Heel Face Turn: During the course of the PC game, the characters try to figure out why some Light Others inexplicably become Dark. turns out that the new technology-based "remoralization" spell can flip the potential Others' alignments before they are initiated.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Stas, the main protagonist of the PC game. Later in the game, it turned out that there is a reason for that - he was a "remoralized" Dark Other
  • McGuffin: Orb of Power, as the name implies, can amplify any spell thousand-fold. Naturally, both sides want to use it for their own purposes.
  • Plucky Comic Relief: Yuri (in the PC game).
  • Unexpected Genre Change: One of the games based on the series is a racing game. Yeah, where you can enter the Twilight to avoid traffic.
  1. Based on the real-life Moscow punk Alexander "Las" Ulyanov, leader of The Belomors and Lukyanenko's friend