John is enthusiastic about comics, cartoons and animated comic movies.
When you have a critic score of 100% on Rotten Tomatoes, 9.2 on IMDB, and most importantly, an audience score averaging 97%, then you know you have something special in your hands.
Normally, I don’t go into a new series with a lot of expectations.
Why? Well, I’ve been disappointed before, especially when there is too much hype around them.
Now with this show being a video game adaptation, and seeing as how badly games have been adapted in the past, I wasn’t particularly excited to watch it. As a matter of fact, I wasn’t planning on watching it at all.
However, following my friend’s persistent chatter about just how good this supposedly "best video game adaptation ever made" was, I decided to give it a try. And boy, was I wrong! Just a couple of episodes in, I was immersed into this world. With each passing episode, I wanted more.
So, to those who’ve not watched this series, here’s a couple of reasons why you should.
1. The Characters
It is difficult to have a diverse set of characters and still allow each one of them to shine. Arcane impressively allows all their characters to have their moments.
In episode one, you’ll be introduced to Vander, a man who’s forced to take the role of a father to Violet and Powder following the repercussions of his attempted revolution against Piltover.
Vander carries out his fatherly duties quite well, so much so that he completely avoids any further conflicts with Piltover to keep them safe. However, Vander is not our main focus here.
Violet and Powder are the focal point of Arcane’s first season, and they are wonderfully developed. The two, particularly Powder, undergo some drastic changes after another heart-rending event.
Arcane effectively shows us just how a well-intended action with unfortunate results can significantly alter one’s character.
The show also features a villain named Silco. He despises Vander’s mechanism for peace with Piltover and wants to use a more radical way to gain freedom for the people of Zaun.
I never thought I’d say this but after the finishing the show, I think Silco is one of the best villains I’ve seen this year.
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Other characters I found interesting were Viktor, Caitlyn, Ekko, Jayce, Sevika, Mel Medarda, and Heimerdinger.
2. The Music
If you’ve watched some of the cinematics released for League of Legends, then you know they’re all about good music and animation. If you haven’t, then I’d suggest heading over to YouTube right now.
Arcane’s opening theme song is "Enemy" by Imagine Dragons. It is glorious, to say the least. Imagine Dragons are well-known for their album Origins, which topped the charts in 2018.
The band are not strangers to Riot Games as they recorded and performed the song titled "Warriors" for League of Legends world championship back in 2014.
With such a prolific band among your list of artists, the soundtracks can only get better.
Here are some of the songs I believe were quite significant based on the scene: "Playground" by Bea Miller, "Guns for Hire" by Woodkid, "Dynasties and Dystopia" by Denzel Curry, Gizzle and Bren Joy, and "What Could have Been" by Sting featuring Ray Chen.
3. The Animation Designs
Arcane’s animation design is unique and stunning. It’s actually one of the things about the show that blew me away. The attention to detail on the characters as well as the environment around them is unlike any I’ve seen before.
The emotions displayed by the characters, particularly young Powder, feels like someone spent an entire month or more crafting the part to perfection. Now that, coupled with the voice acting, makes the scenes feel undeniably real.
This is all made possible through the remarkable effort by Fortiche, a creative production company situated in Paris and Montpellier.
The environment as well as the characters are meticulously hand-painted and animated digitally thus the paint look. Watching Arcane feels like watching a masterpiece painting in motion and for that, the Studio deserves all the praise it has been getting.
4. The Fight Scenes
We all love a good fight scene. In the League of Legends game, the characters are termed as champions. So, you should expect to see them fight each other or at least team up to fight a common enemy.
Some of the champions we’ve seen in the series are Jinx, Vi, Caitlyn, Viktor, Jayce Talis, Ekko, Heimerdinger and Singed. Season 2 is likely to bring up some new champions, but I’ll leave that for Riot Games to decide. And don’t worry, you don’t have to play the game to understand Arcane.
The fight scenes in Arcane are well-executed. They’re fast, unpredictable and thrilling to watch. Each character has a unique skillset that helps them gain advantage over their opponent. From a deadly machine gun to magical powered bionic arms, you won’t want to miss the action once it unfolds.
5. The Story
What makes a good story? In my opinion, it’s the ability to evoke emotions from the audience as while keeping the story as interesting as possible. Arcane does this exceptionally well. I’d say enough to make a grown man cry.
This first season is focused on two nations, Piltover, also known as The City of Progress and Zaun, dubbed as The Undercity.
The former, as the name suggests is a flourishing city with great minds and breathtaking structures.
The latter, however, is a repressed seemingly forgotten city, swarming with addicts and criminals. Needless to say, the undercity is not the place you’d want to be born in.
Despite the ever-present danger, Undercity is also filled with a number of good-hearted people who dream of change and a better home for their loved ones.
The two nations have always been at odds and with the discovery of magic, the conflict intensifies.
6. The Potential
The characters in League of Legends are dynamic and diverse. Every champion has an interesting story we’d love to watch. The world-building that can be done if the series progresses right is almost impossible to imagine.
Although I believe season 2 will still focus on the two sisters, I expect Riot Games to bring in some new characters and develop the series more. With the right direction and momentum, Arcane might turn out to be the next best show of the decade.