Trending Show Arcane beats out Squid Game

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Courtesy Photo

This promotional picture for Acrane highlights all the characters in the show.

Korah Honig , Writer

Video Game film adaptations have a reputation for being awful, but the new League of Legends show Arcane is going against the grain. Arcane racked up more views than hit show Squid Game in its first three days of being released. The show is a Netflix original and has a unique release schedule that proved to be very effective. There were three acts, each with three episodes. A new act was released every Saturday between Nov. 6-20.

This hit show is based on the universe of the PC game League of Legends, which is the most played game in the world. The popular game was released in the fall of 2009 and has never seemed to lose hype. Colleges have even started offering esports teams where students can compete and play the game. The show has been in production for six years, and when you watch it you can see why. Every detail is absolute perfection; character design, animation, graphics, backstory, and the soundtrack are all very thought out and well executed.

Arcane dives into the delicate balance between the prosperous city of Piltover and the poor unhinged underbelly of Zaun. The tensions of these cities boil over with the creation of hextech in Piltover, a scientific way to harness magical energy, and Shimmer in Zaun, a drug that inhumanly alters a person’s body. 

The rivalry splits families and friends and creates new bonds between worlds which leads to the shaping of League’s champions including Vi, Jinx, Caitlyn, Jayce, Viktor, and Ekko. 

The show has something for everyone: breathtaking animation, political dilemmas, action, romance, suspense, worldbuilding, and more. The Riot Games’ Global President of Entertainment, Shauna Spenley, has pointed out that the series was developed in order to expand on the story behind the game. She said, “Arcane was created as a love letter to our players and fans, who have been asking us for more cinematic experiences that dive deeper into the worlds and champions in League of Legends.” 

Junior Brooke Elsea thoroughly enjoyed the show. She commented, “I believe that Arcane is a lot better than I expected; the animation and plotline was amazing to watch. I couldn’t stop watching it as it just got better and better with every episode.” 

The show is split into three acts. The first act centers around two sisters: Powder and Vi. These two live in Zaun. We see how their parents were murdered by enforcers (the Piltover police force), and how fighter Vander took them in. It flashes forward a few years where we see Vander as a peacemaker. He changed his ways and runs the entire undercity. The story unfolds when Silco, a devious crime lord, attempts to take over Zaun. The first act ends with death and disaster as Vi and Powder are separated, leaving fans begging for answers. 

The second act is one that was essential to understanding the Arcane world. There is a time jump to around seven years after the end of act one. This act prioritizes worldbuilding, politics, and the advancement of hextech. It focuses on characters Caitlyn, Jayce, and Mel. The plot follows Caitlyn, a daughter of a high clan who refused to follow in her family’s footsteps to follow her dream of being an enforcer, as she tries to unfold the mystery of attacks in Piltover and find out who’s working for the other side. It also highlights Jayce, a son of a hammer maker who became a scientist and new member of the council; later, we meet Mel, the cast-out daughter of a wealthy family who rose in ranks in Piltover with her outstanding political skills and whit. In this act, you can see the after-effects of Zaun going to shambles after Vander left. 

The third act brings everything together as we see the main characters meet in different situations. Everyone is trying to fix the violent issues between the rival cities, but everyone’s views are different, so we get to see every side of the story. The story beautifully weaves together until a major event leaves an unsatisfying cliffhanger and the audience wanting more. Fans barely finish the last episode before anxiously waiting for season 2, which was just announced to release in 2023. 

Senior Zach Starry is also anticipating another season. He said, “I watched the first season and as a league player, seeing the lore come alive was absolutely enthralling and enticing and I can’t wait for more to be explained with season two.”

Arcane is a masterpiece and one of the greatest shows of all time, and is enjoyable for everyone– from League of Legends professionals to anyone who has never heard of the game but is willing to press play.