Arcane episode 6 recap: Bittersweet reunions

(Image credit: Riot Games/Netflix)

Netflix's Arcane is finally here, and we're recapping each of its episodes. Each Saturday until November 20, a new act containing three episodes will premiere on Netflix. You can also read our recaps of episode 4 and episode 5, or check out our recaps of Act 1.

The final episode of Act 2 opens with another flashback, this time of a young Viktor playing in the waters of the Undercity. His toy boat floats into a cavern, leading him to the scientist responsible for the creation of Shimmer—the same one we saw during Act 1. He's accompanied by a massive, pink lizard. A rare mutation that he cultivated, he explains, but the lizard is dying and he's trying to prevent that. Viktor asks if he can help and the two join forces. Flashing forward in time, Heimerdinger finds Viktor brooding over his diagnosis. The two commiserate over Viktor's looming death.

Viktor's health is also on Jayce's mind. He arrives at councillor Mel Medarda's apartment to inform her of Viktor's diagnosis. His sickness likely stems from the noxious gases he was exposed to in the Undercity as a boy, Jayce says. The exact kind of danger that Hextech could save people from. Meanwhile, at the lab, a dying Viktor finally has his breakthrough.

(Image credit: Riot Games/Netflix)

Desperate times, desperate measures

At The Last Drop, Jinx discovers from one of Silco's goons that there's a manhunt for two women (obviously Vi and Caitlyn—but Jinx doesn't know that). She's curious, so she decides to investigate. Just then, Caitlyn and a severely-injured Vi take refuge in an abandoned building deep in the Undercity. As several of Silco's men run by, one of the Firelights from Episode 4 watches from the shadows. Sometime later, Sevika returns to Silco's office to inform him that they lost track of Vi and Caitlyn but instead find's Jinx waiting for her. Jinx interrogates Sevika and learns that Vi is still alive and looking for her. Seems like a reunion is in order.

Marcus returns home after a long day of being a corrupt bag of shit and finds Silco and his thugs playing with his daughter. Silco has a bone to pick. Turns out, Marcus lied and said he murdered Vi when he captured her following Vander's death in episode 3. But now that Vi and Caitlyn are causing a ruckus in the Undercity, Silco knows the truth. Marcus begs for an opportunity to fix his mistake and Silco obliges, but the consequences are clear: Fail, and he'll hurt Marcus's daughter.

Back in Piltover, Viktor's breakthrough is incredible. The Hextech crystal responds to organic matter, like his blood, and can create life. Already Viktor is able to use the crystal to manifest wild and strange plants, but he believes it could be used to extend life and even cure diseases. Diseases just like the one killing him now. There's just one problem: It's still not stable. Before long, the plants the Hextech crystal creates all die. Viktor's time is short though, so Jayce commits to doing whatever it takes to solve this last riddle.

(Image credit: Riot Games/Netflix)

Desperate for help, the two call on Heimerdinger. But after explaining this new development in Hextech, Heimerdinger is more resolute than ever that Hextech must be destroyed because it's simply too dangerous. Jayce refuses and, despite Heimerdinger's pleas, says it's a matter the Council will decide on. Viktor then explains he might know someone else who can help.

Vi and Caitlyn, still on the run, discover a massive ghetto hidden in one of the caverns deep underground. The people there are all addicted to Shimmer, the narcotic Silco manufactures. One of the addicts recognizes Vi and wants to help, so he leads Caitlyn to a healer who creates a potion that can heal Vi's wounds. In exchange for a healing potion, Caitlyn trades her rifle.

Maybe not the smartest trade.

Back in Piltover, Marcus presents Jayce with Jinx's grenade as evidence that the Firelights were responsible for the bombing on Progress Day. Wanting to secure Piltover from any further terrorist attacks, Jayce orders Marcus to lock down the bridge between Piltover and Zaun and search anyone coming across.

Hours later, the Council convenes to discuss Viktor's breakthrough in organic Hextech. Heimerdinger's plea is dwarfed by Jayce's concerns that the city is too vulnerable to attack. With Shimmer running rampant in the Undercity and Firelights (supposedly) bombing Piltover, Jayce makes the argument that Heimerdinger is no longer capable of maintaining order over the city. He moves to remove Heimerdinger from the Council and the other councillors agree. It's a vicious betrayal.

Thanks to the potion, Caitlyn is able to revive Vi and staunch her bleeding. But before the two can figure out the next step, Silco arrives on the scene. The Shimmer addict who helped Caitlyn sold them out for some of Silco's shimmer. The two exchange some threats but Silco wants to do more than talk and sics a trio of Shimmer mutants on Vi. With nowhere to run, Vi punches a support beam loose and causes the entire building she and Caitlyn were hiding in to collapse, nearly killing Silco.  

(Image credit: Riot Games/Netflix)

As they flee through the Undercity, Jinx finds a tall building and lights the signal flare Vi gave her years ago—before Vander died. The flare Jinx was supposed to light if she needed Vi to come and save her. As Vi and Caitlyn flee Silco, Vi spots the smoke from the flare and remembers her promise to Jinx. Just then, we see Marcus and a battalion of Enforcers enact Jayce's order to lock down the bridges between Piltover and the Undercity. Meanwhile, Silco arrives back at his headquarters to find Sevika tied up and "liar" spray painted all over her body. Seems like Jinx isn't all that pleased that Silco lied about Vi for all these years.

Flashing back in time, a young Viktor arrives at the scientist's lair and sees him draining the blood from his magical giant lizard. Flashing forward, adult Viktor enters that same lair. The lizard is now encased in a giant tank, seemingly being kept alive to produce more Shimmer. "I understand now," Viktor says as the scientist turns around to reveal his face, now scorched by the explosion that killed Milo, Claggor, and Vander. Surprise! The scientist is obviously Singed, another iconic League champ.

That's not the only big reunion happening, though. Vi finally finds Jinx after so many years apart and explains that she didn't intend to abandon her but was captured by Marcus before she could save Jinx. It's a touching moment spoiled by the arrival of Caitlyn, whom Jinx immediately recognizes as an Enforcer. It's a double whammy of a revelation, though. As Jinx realizes that Vi is working with Piltover Enforcers, Caitlyn realizes Vi's sister is the terrorist responsible for the Progress Day bombing that killed half a dozen Enforcers.

The stress of the situation sets Jinx on edge and she begins rambling incoherently at the specters of Milo and Claggor that haunt her. Vi tries to calm Jinx but before she can, those pesky Firelights show up on their hoverboards again and attack the whole lot of them. In the chaos, Jinx drops the Hextech crystal she stole and Vi gets a glimpse of just how deranged her sister has become. The Firelights overwhelm the trio and abduct Caitlyn and Vi in addition to also swiping the Hextech crystal, leaving Jinx all alone again. 

And that's the end of Act 2. Be sure to check out our recaps of episode 4 and episode 5, our brush up on what happened in Act one with our episode 1, episode 2, and episode 3 recaps. 

Steven Messner

With over 7 years of experience with in-depth feature reporting, Steven's mission is to chronicle the fascinating ways that games intersect our lives. Whether it's colossal in-game wars in an MMO, or long-haul truckers who turn to games to protect them from the loneliness of the open road, Steven tries to unearth PC gaming's greatest untold stories. His love of PC gaming started extremely early. Without money to spend, he spent an entire day watching the progress bar on a 25mb download of the Heroes of Might and Magic 2 demo that he then played for at least a hundred hours. It was a good demo.