How Do You Want to Review This?

A review on the animated TV show “The Legend of Vox Machina”

by Sophia Smith, Co-editor in chief

“The Legend of Vox Machina” is an animated fantasy show first released Jan. 25, 2022 on Amazon Prime Video that adapts the first campaign of an actual-play D&D show called Critical Role, whose claim to fame is the cast being composed of popular voice actors. It follows a ragtag group of seven mercenary adventurers called Vox Machina who suddenly became responsible for saving the continent Tal’Dorei in the fictional world of Exandria. 

Season two of “The Legend of Vox Machina” was released Jan. 20, 2023 and continues the story of their adventure as a great evil threatens their home. Season one focuses mostly on Percy (Taliesin Jaffe), which isn’t an issue I have per se, but it’s nice that season two focuses on a lot more of the cast. Especially the twins, Vex’ahlia (Laura Bailey) and Vax’ildan (Liam O’Brien), get a lot of big character defining moments in this season. 

The voice acting work is phenomenal in this show. The voice actors in the show voice the same character that they played in the actual-play show – for example, Ashley Johnson, who you may know as Ellie in “The Last of Us,” voices her character Pike Trickfoot. Even the dungeon master, Matthew Mercer, is a voice actor – most well known for his roles as Levi Ackermann in “Attack on Titan” and Cole Cassidy in “Overwatch.” The fact that the voice actors already have personal experience with these characters makes the performance a lot more emotional and real.

The animation in season two, while it was still good in season one, makes a huge improvement. It seriously looks incredible. All of the 3D animation they utilize for the fight scenes never looks out of place and mesh extremely well with the 2D characters, especially the opening fight scene. It makes me a lot more excited for season three because it’s obvious they’re dedicated to improving. 

Season three of “The Legend of Vox Machina” isn’t the only thing Critical Role is planning for the future.

Critical Role signed a deal with Amazon Prime, the streaming service of “The Legend of Vox Machina,” to produce films, TV shows and content. Even though “The Legend of Vox Machina” has already been greenlit for a season three, I imagine it could even continue beyond that, hopefully with another season and maybe even a movie. However, I am especially excited for their most recent announcement – an animated TV show adapting their second campaign, “The Mighty Nein,” in the same way they adapted “The Legend of Vox Machina.” This news was huge to me because I am a massive fan of “The Mighty Nein,” more so than I am their first or third campaign, so to hear that I’ll be able to see my favorite characters and storylines animated is amazing. It will be produced under Critical Role’s production company “Metapigeon” (which is named after a frankly hilarious inside joke from the campaign).

Overall, now is a great time to get invested in Critical Role, whether you have been interested in starting for a while or this is the first time you’re ever hearing about it. “The Legend of Vox Machina” requires no knowledge of Critical Role or D&D, and is a great watch for anyone interested in high fantasy and/or adult animation. You can watch “The Legend of Vox Machina” (and eventually “The Mighty Nein”) on Amazon Prime, and the Critical Role actual-play campaigns are all available on Youtube. Campaign three gets live streamed on Youtube and Twitch every Thursday.

I give “The Legend of Vox Machina” a 5/5 stars.