Editor’s note: The following article contains spoilers for Episodes 1 to 3 of The Legend of Vox Machina Season 2.
Season 1 of The Legend of Vox Machina did the impossible by introducing a cast of seven main characters and making us care for them all. Still, the show mainly focused on Percy de Rolo (voiced by Taliesin Jaffe), whose backstory serves as a hook for Season 1’s main challenges. So far, the first three episodes of Season 2 of The Legend of Vox Machina spread the love a little more by giving multiple characters their chance to shine. Still, it seems like the new adventure arc of The Legend of Vox Machina is particularly concerned with Vex’ahlia (voiced by Laura Bailey) and Vax’ildan (voiced by Liam O’Brien), siblings whose lives were shaped by a dragon attack. And by exploring their relationship, the first three episodes of Season 2 raise the emotional stakes of the series before punching us in the gut.
Vex and Vax’s Childhood Shaped Their Adult Selves
Season 1 of The Legend of Vox Machina revealed to fans that Vex’ahlia and Vax’ildan became adventurers after their mother was killed in a dragon attack. It also tells us the siblings are half-elves, even though it doesn’t explain how that would help shape their identities. While this information is scarce, it’s still enough to justify the characters’ class choices.
Since The Legend of Vox Machina is based on Dungeons & Dragons, each character represents a certain kind of adventurer. Vax, for instance, is a Thief, a sneaky and treacherous warrior, and a master of traps and locks. And since Vax always had to take care of himself and his sister, it is not a stretch to imagine he got involved with criminal activities to survive. As for Vex, she’s a Ranger, a survivalist specializing in certain kinds of prey. And since a dragon took her mother away, Vex has a higher sensitivity for the scaly beast, which leads Vox Machina to fight Brimscythe (voiced by David Tennant) in Season 1.
While that’s backstory enough for us to understand the siblings, Season 2 of The Legend of Vox Machina takes things further. In Episode 3, “The Sunken Tomb,” we get flashbacks of Vex and Vax’s childhood. In these flashbacks, we learn that their father, a proud Elf, despised the twins for their impure blood. The conflict with the patriarch eventually led Vax’ildan to run away from home and drag Vex’ahlia with him. This escape from home reinforces both characters’ class choices, showing how they came to develop the skills they currently use to fight villains. However, this trip to the past also serves a story purpose, as it prepares the audience for the shocking death of Vex’ahlia.
‘The Legend of Vox Machina’ Makes Vex’s Death Meaningful
Both in the past and in the present, Season 2 of The Legend of Vox Machina explores how Vax is overprotective of his sister. He always rushes in front of her to check for traps, orders her to stay put, and puts himself at risk so that she can stay safe. At first, it seems like The Legend of Vox Machina is preparing us for a massive fight between the twins, as Vex gets tired of her brother not giving her the due credit for her fantastic warrior skills. Vex’ahlia and Vax’ildan are equally deadly in combat, and as adults, they should be responsible for their choices. That also means Vax must accept his sister is capable of deciding what risks she’ll take.
However, the breadcrumbs The Legend of Vox Machina leaves behind actually lead us to the wrong path. As the flashback sequence of Episode 3 reveals, Vax tries to protect his sister not because he doesn’t trust her or because he thinks he’s responsible for her survival. In the act, Vax’s biggest fear is losing his sister. He needs her way more than she needs him, and Vax is aware of that. So much so that he shaped his entire life into learning the skills that would help keep Vex’ahlia safe. Vex also knows her brother fears loneliness above everything else, so she lets him take charge of dangerous tasks most of the time. By pretending she needs Vax to keep her safe, Vex’ahlia demonstrates how much she cares for her brother’s feelings.
In Episode 3, The Legend of Vox Machina teases that Vax doesn’t respect his sister as an equal. But the heartbreaking truth is that Vex is the only thing the thief still has after losing his mother and breaking free from an abusive father. That’s why it’s hard for him to let Vex put herself in danger’s way. As for Vex, she embraces her brother’s flaws, even when his actions damage her independence. The conflict The Legend of Vox Machina plants in Season 2 is just a red herring to distract us from what’s really happening at the end of Episode 3. Because before the credits roll and we have to wait another week to see how the story goes, Vex’ahlia dies a victim of a trap. And the last thing The Legend of Vox Machina shows us is Vax’s despair as he holds his sister’s cold and lifeless corpse.
Season 1 of The Legend of Vox Machina didn’t hold any punches to show the bloody and cruel consequences of adventuring. But no loss was so brutal as the death of Vex’ahlia. And while fans would be sad to see any party member die, Vex’s demise hits us harder because the series carefully built up to a different and less final outcome, a schism between the twins. And just as The Legend of Vox Machina reveals its true intentions and underlines how their bond is unbreakable, the show splits them apart in the most definitive way. Because even if death is not permanent according to Dungeons & Dragons rules, it’s almost impossible to come back from the realm of the dead. Maybe it’s good we can’t watch the next episodes for a while. We might need some time to recover.
New episodes of The Legend of Vox Machina come to Prime Video every Friday.