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Arcane Episode 4 Breakdown: League of Legends Television Series

Arcane episode 4

Arcane episode 4 presents the world years ahead of Act 1. In this episode, the characters begin to resemble their iterations in League of Legends. Act 2 opens in a way where viewers witness progress, in the world and in the characters. Therefore, episode 4’s title: Happy Progress Day! is only fitting. Highlighting both Zaun and Piltover, Arcane Episode 4 once again presents and develops the power of struggle between the two regions.

[Related: Arcane Act 2 Overview]

This article contain heavy spoilers for Arcane episode 4.

For readers who have not watched the fourth episode yet, avoid this breakdown.

The Sunrise over the Horizon

In the very first scene, the sun rises above Piltover while Heimerdinger and Jayce talk in the background. Symbolizing a new horizon, a new start in the chapter of Runeterra.

“The Council has recommended you give the Progress Day speech this year.”

“But you always give that speech. I… I could never take your place.”

“I agree with them. Your Hexgates have done wonders for our city.”

There’s a lot to unpack right here. Jayce, at this moment in time, still holds back. Despite ignoring Heimerdinger’s warnings practically every step of the way, Jayce defers to him when being spoken directly to. And Heimerdinger, despite Jayce ignoring his every warning, still respects and pushes Jayce forward.

Progress Day

The audience is shown a festive setting of Progress Day, eventually leading them to Mrs. Kiramman. (Caitlyn’s mother). Previously shown talking trash about the boy before his trial in act 1, Mrs. Kiramman now fluffs up Jayce’s scientific discoveries, kissing his behind by speaking praise to the crowd.

Caitlyn stands off to the side, away from the activity. She’s never seen directly next to her mother, despite being an immediate family member. The amount of distance between blood relatives remains despairingly large in the Kiramman family. Episode 2 reveals that Mrs. Kiramman is mad at her daughter for becoming an officer, rather than something “befitting her station.” Caitlyn desires to see the “real” world, while Mrs. Kiramman hopes to contain her in the confines of politics.

Terrorist Attack 1

Suspicious characters surround an airship, floating on hoverboards.

“Ah shit, the Firelights.”

What ensues is nothing short of chaos. Two goons go into a basement, where Jinx ambushes them in the dark. “BOOM.” Jinx slips past the two goons, attaching grenades onto their bodies and effectively killing then. This is Jinx’s first purposeful kill in the series that the audience is exposed to. Occurring very suddenly, the animation continues in an almost cartoon like fashion. This lack of acknowledgement of death reflects Jinx’s lack of care towards the idea of killing. She walks out of the explosion casually. Socially awkward, and almost playfully, she greets the Firelights.

“Hi.”

The fight begins, and Jinx’s face immediately changes. Filled with anger and murderous intent, she begins to 1v9 the Firelights. There are some fancy moves, typical of an animated show. With over the top moves, and brutal finishers, Jinx resembles a super hero during their action scenes. But when confronted by a female Firelight with red hair, Jinx shoots her in the back. The Firelight falls lifeless onto the floor, clearly dead. This is when the audience and the Firelight leader realize what Jinx has done, and what she has been doing.

Jinx loses her mind, spraying her minigun rounds across the entire airship. Screaming, Jinx sets the entire setting ablaze.

Jayce and Viktor’s Scientific Inventions

The two partners show Heimerdinger the fruits of their labor. First, presenting a stabilized version of the magic orb from prior, and second, a pair of gauntlets alongside a mechanical arm. Most League players recognize these gadgets. The gauntlets are Vi’s, and the mechanical arm is Viktor’s, fittingly wielded by him in the scene. When Viktor demonstrates his invention, the laser draws a portrait of Heimerdinger. But in doingso, cuts off part of the stone slab, and almost hits the poor poro. Very realistically foreshadowing Viktor’s own plight in the future. Perhaps he will attempt to utilize his inventions, but run into danger along the way.

Progress Day Speech

Prior to Jayce’s speech, he confronts Councilor Medarda, stating they need more time for his inventions. She states, “Heimerdinger is a great scientist. But he’s old. he only ever sees the past. Piltover needs a leader who looks forward.” Thus begins the temptation for power and progress. And what better day, than Progress Day.

Jayce reluctantly agrees with Medarda, only to choose not to reveal the inventions during the actual speech. Instead, he promises great things for the future to come. Thereby, he takes what Medarda suggests, spins it his own way while straying slightly from Medarda’s direction manipulation. This power dynamic is essential to note in upcoming episodes. While Jayce makes his speech, Viktor stands behind the scenes, in the dark. As a previous member of Zaun, Viktor and his plights reflect that of hardship known only to those desperate for survival.

Caitlyn’s Investigations

All throughout Act 1, Caitlyn lacked screen time and development. But now, she takes the center stage, pushing the plot forward. Investigating the crime scene on her own, while simultaneously disobeying direct orders, Caitlyn shows a drive to discover the realities of the situations surrounding her. Her pursuit of the truth makes her a very likeable figure. She even approaches Vi, a member of the undercity.

More on her character development discussed in Episode 5 breakdown.

Jinx and Silco’s Interactions


These two share a father daughter relationship. Silco believes in Jinx’s capabilities, while learning to accept her broken characteristics. Jinx, on the other hand, yearns to fulfill Silco’s desires. In one scene, after being briefed by Sevika of the chaos Jinx created, Silco immediately asks Jinx “what happened.” Despite his longest henchman flaming Jinx, Silco understands that Jinx is not to be blamed. He wishes to understand the method of her thinking.

Silco then hands Jinx the needle he uses for treating his eye, a task that he had always done alone prior. Jinx then proceeds to play with the needle, showing off her childlike demeanor. But after Silco states, “I’m doing this for us, Jinx.” Jinx replies, “I know.” She then precisely injects the fluid into his eye.

Discussed in previous breakdowns, the pupil in Arcane reflect volumes of a character’s drive. In Silco, his deformed eye stares holes into his enemies, stopping at nothing to achieve his goals. The fact that Silco entrusts Jinx to perform the treatment means he holds great trust in Jinx, and wishes to pass on his will to her.

Silco Confronts Jinx

Jinx blows up another building, stealing one of Jayce’s magical orbs. She kills half a dozen enforcers while doing so, creating utter mayhem on the topside. As Silco yells at Jinx, she tunes out his screams with the music of “Get Jinxed!”

Silco screams “Half a dozen enforcers, dead. Enforcers. Dead!” Jinx replies, “yeah…” The screams continue, “a building, blown to pieces!” Once again Jinx replies, “Oh, yeah.” She gleefully laughs, clearly having enjoyed the entire process. With the music of Get Jinxed having played before, the audience begins to realize that Powder is far gone. She has truly embodied the entity known as Jinx, very much enjoying the violence and mayhem she creates. When Jinx reveals the prize of her endeavor, Silco becomes speechless. His expression softens, and Jinx yells out “HAPPY PROGRESS DAY!” As Piltover progresses, so too does Zaun, by whatever means necessary.

In Conclusion

Arcane Episode 4 fantastically reintroduces the regions of Piltover and Zaun. A couple years ahead of Act 1, the audience sees the progress being made. The scenes and characters resemble the champions that League of Legends players know them as much more in this episode than the prior act. But clearly, more progress is needed before these characters reach their final form.

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1 comment

Arcane Act 2 Overview: The World Most are Familiar With November 16, 2021 at 1:47 pm

[…] Episode 4: Happy Progress Day! […]

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