The Legend of Vox Machina season 2 review: bigger and bolder

The Legend of Vox Machina season 2 review: bigger and bolder

Vox Machina stand together in front of an archway in Season 2 of The Legend of Vox Machina.

The legend of Vox Machina season 2

“In its second season, The Legend of Vox Machina greatly expands its scope and delivers an episode that feels richer, more engaging, deeper and more emotionally rewarding than the first.”

Advantages

  • Grog and Scanlan’s late-season arcs

  • Spirited, energetic performances

  • Some colorful, eye-catching new locations

Cons

  • One slow, ineffective way in the middle of the season

  • Some characters still feel too one-note

The legend of Vox Machina Season 2 is a bigger, darker and more ambitious season of television than the first season. In its second year, the adult animated series continues to be one of the most interesting shows on air right now. It’s not because its high fantasy story or its eccentric group of misfits are unique, either.

Unlike almost every other fantasy TV show — live-action or otherwise — being produced these days, The legend of Vox Machina is not based on an existing book or video game. The series is, instead, based on the first Dungeons & Dragons campaign that aired as part of the online tabletop role-playing web series Critical Role from 2015 to 2017. The events of the show, in other words, are based on the story that the heart Critical Role ​was created together over several years.

It was for that reason The legend of Vox Machina season 1 was often at its best whenever it was able to replicate the friendship and theatrical drama that made so many viewers tune in Critical Role in the first place. Fortunately, those moments are much more common The Legend of Vox Machinseason 2, which greatly expands the fantasy scope of the series, but does so without losing sight of the friendships and emotions that make it so enjoyable and enjoyable to watch.

Umbrasyl roars atop the burning city in The Legend of Vox Machina Season 2.
Courtesy of Prime Video

As Critical Role fans will already know, The Legend of Vox MachinSeason 2 wisely picks up right where it first left off. The first installment of the new season follows the seven members of Vox Machina after they and the citizens of the royal city of Yemen are suddenly surrounded by the four giant villainous dragons that make up the powerful collective known as the Chroma Conclave. Many are killed and the city of Emon is completely destroyed during the attack, forcing Vox Machina to flee to the White Stone, the city where Percy (Taliesin Jaffe) and his friends spent most of the first season of The legend of Vox Machina trying to save.

Visually and emotionally, the animated series doesn’t shy away from the death and destruction caused by the Chroma Conclave attack. However, much as he did in Critical RoleIn the first campaign, Emon’s destruction serves as an effective catalyst for the rest of it The Legend of Vox Machina sEason 2. By scrapping its first main location, the series is forced to send Vox Machina to new cities and previously unexplored regions, giving The legend of Vox Machina season 2 wide scope and a variety of visually rich locations.

The arrival of the Chroma Conclave sets the dramatic engine of the The legend of Vox Machina season 2, which follows its central heroes as they seek out a handful of powerful weapons known as the “Readings of Diversity”. As in the case of the Critical Role campaign that inspired it, their pursuit of the Vestiges forces the members of Vox Machina to grapple with personal issues both old and new. This is especially the case with Scanlan (Sam Riegel), Grog (Travis Willingham), Vax (Liam O’Brien), and Vex (Laura Bailey), who all have to deal with significant emotional turmoil. themselves to earn their Vestiges.

Pike sits on Grog's shoulder in Season 2 of The Legend of Vox Machina.
Courtesy of Prime Video

Not all The legend of Vox Machina Season 2’s emotional detour works as well as others. Bailey’s Vex, for example, is the source of many of the worst lines in the series. even though The legend of Vox Machina Season 2 tries to add depth to her questions of self-worth and her greedy tendencies, the character’s portrayal is ultimately too solid for any of her moments to feel as impactful as they should. Because of that, the season’s Vex and Vax-centric detour into a trippy alternate plane called “The Feywild” feels less engaging than many of its other subplots.

Thankfully, the rest of it The legend of Vox MachinaThe latest 12 episodes don’t struggle with those same issues. The first half of the season will have an alluring spirit of adventure as Vox Machina ventures into various new locations and meets a handful of new characters. The first six episodes of the season effectively set up some strong introspective arcs for Vax, Grog (Travis Willingham), and Scanlan, all of which are very rewarding in The legend of Vox Machina Season 2 final half. Grog’s journey, in particular, combines the epic and the personal in a way that should not be satisfied Critical Role fans, but also the casual audience that drew in first The legend of Vox Machinaan eclectic brand of fantasy storytelling.

Vox Machina stands together in the sunset in Season 2 of The Legend of Vox Machina.
Courtesy of Prime Video

After spending most of his first season focused on Percy Jaffe, The legend of Vox Machina he shifts his focus to some of the other members of his first-named team. This change in direction allows already excellent members like Willingham and Riegel to flex their muscles more and turn to the kind of dynamic, multi-dimensional vocal performances that help. Vox Machinacharacters feel deeper than the recognizable archetypes suggest. The season’s increased focus on Grog also results in more time being spent on his sweet friendship with Pike Trickfoot (Ashley Johnson), Vox Machina’s resident healer.

While she’s not the focal point of any of the season’s central arcs either, Johnson continues to bring a playful, comedic spirit to Pike that only further emphasizes the character’s heart and sense of compassion. The chemistry between her and Willingham together as Pike and Grog is infectious, and the former is even given the opportunity to duet with Scanlan Riegel on a country-style song that is, in and of itself, the kind of deep reference it should be. joy Critical Role fans everywhere.

Among the season’s guest stars, Henry Winkler and Ralph Ineson are obviously perfectly cast as Wilhand Trickfoot, Pike’s great-great-grandfather, and Kevdak, Grog’s evil uncle, respectively. The Nightingale star Aisling Franciosi also made a handful of appearances in the second half of the season as a confident gnome who quickly turns Scanlan’s life upside down.

The Legend of Vox Machina – S2 – Trailer (Red Band Trailer) | Video Prime

even though Critical Role some of the new channels may surprise fans The legend of Vox Machina different from its source material, the changes made by the show’s entire creative team make the story of the second season of the series feel more well-structured and streamlined. Coming off an uneventful first season, The legend of Vox Machina has returned with a sophomore run that gradually increases its scope and emotional weight before encountering a series of confrontations and redemptive moments that feel both seismic and earned.

As far as the second season goes, The legend of Vox Machina season 2 not only surpasses its predecessor, but cements the series’ place as the new must-see fantasy TV staple.

New episode of The legend of Vox Machina season 2 premieres Friday on Prime Video. Digital Trends was given early access to all 12 episodes of the season.

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