Screencap of Jinx and Vi in a scene from Netflix's 'Arcane.' They are both white, teenage girls in close-up angrily coming at each other in a fight. Jinx (left) is screaming with her mouth open with her hand up about to claw Vi's eyes out. Vi's teeth are clenched as she comes at Jinx with her power fist.

Season 2 of TV’s Other Great Video Game Adaptation Will End One Story But Leave Room for Others

I adore HBO’s The Last of Us. The thing is, I loved the original video games going into the show. While the TV series is brilliant, the adaptation is not what makes me love that story. Whereas when it comes to Netflix’s Arcane, set in the world of Riot Games’ League of Legends, I’ve never been particularly interested in the game, but I adore the compelling, emotionally affecting show.

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The adaptation itself is worthwhile, whether you’ve played League of Legends or not. Think pieces galore cite The Last of Us as a turning point for quality game adaptations. But we’ve already had great ones. Arcane is one of them. Sadly, Jinx and Vi’s story is coming to a close with the show’s upcoming second season. However, Riot Games promises that this isn’t the last we’ve seen of the world of League of Legends.

It’s “The Final Chapter,” but there’s more Runeterra to come

Image of Jinx in a scene from Netflix's "Arcane." She is a white teenage girl with blue hair, a steampunk outfit bearing a lot of skin, and blue and pink nail polish. She's leaning back in a chair and calmly looking up at the ceiling pointing a finger gun at it.

As reported by Variety, Arcane co-creator Christian Linke released a statement confirming that season two would be the final chapter in this particular League of Legends story, but that the partnership between Riot Games and animation studio Fortiche is far from over:

Arcane is just the beginning of our larger storytelling journey and partnership with the wonderful animation studio that is Fortiche. From the very beginning, since we started working on this project, we had a very specific ending in mind, which means the story of Arcane wraps up with this second season. But Arcane is just the first of many stories that we want to tell in Runeterra.”

Christian Linke

A new look at the sister drama unfolding in season two

Netflix released a new teaser trailer giving us a better look at the war unfolding between Piltover and Zaun in Arcane‘s second season. At its heart, of course, is the complicated relationship between sisters Violet, AKA ‘Vi’ (Hailee Steinfeld) and Powder, AKA ‘Jinx’ (Ella Purnell):

In the aftermath of Jinx’s act of terror at the end of season one, Piltover is readying itself for a swift, violent response. As Ambessa (Ellen Thomas) says to her daughter Mel (Toks Olagundoye) in this trailer, “wrath must be met with wrath.”

Meanwhile, Caitlyn (Katie Leung) outlines Piltover’s mission clearly: “I will lead a strike team into Zaun with three objectives: Locate Jinx, dismantle shimmer, and neutralize any agents still loyal to Silco.”

Knowing the romantic relationship that was brewing between Vi and Caitlyn throughout the first season, it’s interesting that the mission is simply to “locate” Jinx. Not kill her. She’s separated out from the “neutralizing.” There seems to be an acknowledgement that Vi wants to find her sister alive and give repairing their relationship another try.

However, at the end of this trailer, Vi actually calls her sister Jinx, and Jinx responds by saying, “Finally got the name right.” We leave them as they are about to come to blows, with Vi seemingly having resigned herself to the fact that the sister she knew no longer exists.

Arcane‘s “First Look” teaser!

Back in January, Netflix released an intriguing “First Look” at season two of Arcane, which will be arriving on the streamer in November:

In it, we see Singed (Brett Tucker) in a chair seemingly coming in and out of consciousness while engaged in more science experiment f*ckery. He’s in the middle of some kind of strange blood transfusion, blood traveling from his arm down some tubes into some larger glass canisters…but to what end?

It isn’t until the final shot of the dialogue-free clip that we see the end point of all the traveling blood and fluid. A large, mutated monster is hanging from the ceiling. If you are familiar with League of Legends lore, and if you look closely at the feet, the head, and the telltale glowing green canister coming out of its back, you might recognize who it is.

Holy crap, is that….?

After lots of fan speculation, it looks pretty definitive that Warwick will be joining the story of Arcane in the show’s second season. So, who is Warwick, anyway?

Warwick, aka Subject #1088, is a character from League of Legends with some compelling and traumatic backstory. Warwick was born human, and had been a gangster who ended up trying to live a better life and walk the straight and narrow.

When Singed went looking for a new subject for his experiments in transmutation, however, he saw in Warwick a “beast.” According to the in-universe story, “Engineering the Nightmare,” Singed wrote that he, “Procured a cutthroat hiding among the populace and feigning civility. Only a disciplined eye could recognize the beast within, yearning for release. How could I refuse? For what is my work if not an attempt to reveal life’s hidden truths through science?”

Singed’s experiments end up turning this reformed criminal into a bloodthirsty, wrathful lycan in constant pain for whom the very smell of blood will cause a frenzy that assures the bleeding person’s death. Thankfully, he only seems to seek out the criminals of Zaun when looking to feed. At least he has a code, I guess?

When are we getting a second season of Arcane?

Back in November 2023, Variety reported that Netflix has officially announced that season 2 of Arcane will arrive on the streamer in November 2024! While they didn’t announce a specific date, at least we now know what month we can expect it. This makes sense, as fans of the show have been speculating online that November is a likely premiere month, as it would not only be in line with when the show’s first season premiered, but also line up with League of Legends‘ 15th anniversary.

Turns out that the fans were right!

Back in September 2023, SFX reported that Tencent, League of Legends‘ Chinese parent company, announced at their Video V Vision Conference that season two of Arcane would be arriving in Q4 of 2024. So it seems that Fall was always likely, and as progress has been made on the season (and now that the SAG-AFTRA strike is officially over), the companies involved have been able to zero in on more exact timing.

Arcane‘s nine-episode first season was Netflix’s highest-rated series within a week of its premiere, ranked first on the Netflix Top 10 Chart in 52 countries, and ranked second on the chart in the United States. So, it would’ve been foolish for the streamer not to give the series another season.

Back in November 2021, shortly after Arcane‘s first season ended, the League of Legends YouTube channel released this video announcing that season 2 of Arcane was in production!

According to then-Riot Games CEO Nicolo Laurent, it took them six years to make the first season of the show. And while he said it shouldn’t take that long for season 2, he also said that it wouldn’t be happening in 2022:

As of 2023, Laurent transitioned out of his position at Riot Games and into an advisory role to focus on family and move back to France. As reported by The Verge, Riot Games’ Global President Dylan Jadeja has stepped into the CEO role.

It’s unclear how (or if) this changing of the guard impacted production on Arcane, but it’s heartening to know that there’s a definite end in sight.

What can we expect from Arcane season 2?

Image of Vi with her back turned to us as she faces one of Silco's enormous, tatted henchmen in a scene from Netflix's 'Arcane.' Vi is a white teenage girl with chin-length shaggy pink hair wearing a white t-shirt under a sleeveless vest with a hood and huge metal gloves on her arms. The guy she's facing down is huge and muscular and stands a foot taller than her. He's bald, white, and has facial piercings. He's wearing a white undershirt, and pants with suspenders.

The first season of Arcane focused on the relationship between orphaned sisters Vi and Powder who struggle to survive the brewing tensions between the wealthy city of Piltover and its oppressed underbelly, the city of Zaun. As young Vi and Powder get older, are separated through misunderstanding, and grow up under very different influences, they end up on opposing sides of Piltover and Zaun’s clashes over class, power, and arcane technologies.

The season ends with Powder having grown into a new, unstable persona and going by the name Jinx. Try though she does to reach Jinx, Vi pushes too far and after some traumatic events, Jinx fully embraces her new self and commits an explosive act of terrorism.

Season 2, then, would likely be dealing with the aftermath of that. Who survived Jinx’s attack? Will Zaun gain independence from Piltover? And most importantly, will Vi and Jinx ever be sisters again?

According to Kevin Alejandro (voice of Jayce Talis) in an interview with Buzzfeed, season 2 will be worth the wait:

“You’re going to be on the edge of your seats. You’re going to be conflicted in such a way that I don’t know if it’s good or bad. Like, your emotions will be pulled out of you and you’ll be like ‘OH MY GOD!’ That’s how you’re going to end. It’s so good! This is one of the coolest things I’ve ever been part of.”

What about the cast and characters of Arcane season 2?

Image of the lycan character Warwick from the 'League of Legends' game. We see his angry wolf face and one of his large paws as he crouches, ready to pounce on prey.
(Riot Games)

While the first season two video announcement above featured no show visuals, it did feature snippets of dialogue from various characters. Digital Spy reported that one bit toward the end was particularly significant:

Arcane fans are convinced they can hear the mechanical heartbeat of League of Legends’ champion Warwick, a part-werewolf, part-machine who doesn’t remember his life before he was experimented on in scientist Singed’s laboratory.”

So yes, fans have been speculating about Warwick since last year, and it looks like they were right to do so!

We still have a little over five months to wait for season two to drop. Thankfully, the brilliant first season of Arcane is available to watch as much as we want on Netflix.

And who knows? Maybe I’ll even give the game a whirl.

(featured image: Netflix)

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Teresa Jusino
Teresa Jusino (she/her) is a native New Yorker and a proud Puerto Rican, Jewish, bisexual woman with ADHD. She's been writing professionally since 2010 and was a former TMS assistant editor from 2015-18. Now, she's back as a contributing writer. When not writing about pop culture, she's writing screenplays and is the creator of your future favorite genre show. Teresa lives in L.A. with her brilliant wife. Her other great loves include: Star Trek, The Last of Us, anything by Brian K. Vaughan, and her Level 5 android Paladin named Lal.