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Critical Role Review: Bonus One-shot and Episode 66

By: I.Am.No.Man

Critical Role Extra: The Return of Liam!

Summary: Liam O’Brian steps in as DM for this bonus episode one shot! He, along with Laura Bailey, Travis Willingham, Sam Riegel, Mary Elizabeth McGlynn, and Ashly Burch dive into a new story with brand new characters. The gang play a mismatched group of mercenaries on an inside job to steal a gem from a powerful Clasp higher up. Who will survive and who will trust the wrong person?

Why to Watch: New characters, new DM, new hilarious accents! What’s not to love about one shots? These are perfect episodes for newcomers interested in seeing what DnD is all about. This episode features some of my favorite cast members and guest stars from Critical Role. Liam does an amazing job as DM. Travis gets to play an evil genius which is a blast to watch. Mary Elizabeth (everyone’s favorite tiefling) is chilling as a psychotic seriel killer who likes to skin her victims. Ashly is just as cute as a haiku-loving rogue Halfling as her crazy poop-loving goblin alter ego from her last guest appearance in bonus episode To The Poop! Sam Riegel is fucking hilarious as always. His vaguely eastern European, dim-witted dwarf, Obby the Rat steals the show.

Highlights:

The Voice-over: (7:52)

Character Intros: (14:49)

Do you know why they call me Obby the Rat: (28:30)

I am frequently used as punishment: (38:15)

The betrayal begins early (47:59)

Best moments from first encounter (1:25:00-1:27:10)

How do you want to do this? (1:30:31)

Jesus nipples on a horse (1:32:00)

Addictions (2:09:53)

Can I assassinate the fish tank? (2:53:20)

We’re gonna die (3:25:27)

Epic cocksucker whip fail (3:41:45)

Obby’s Haiku (3:45:25)

Beginning of the end (3:59:04)

Things Fall Apart (4:14:41)

Tiny little Benedict Arnold (4:19:38)

Poor Tarvis just wants to kill (4:23:56)

Evil Tarvis is so evil (4:35:36)

The final fuck you haiku (4:38:50)

Is the moral of the story ‘Don’t steal from old ladies?’(4:45:40)

Lowlights:

Liam did a great job in the DM’s chair. It’s always hard to jump in and lead a campaign, especially with Matt Mercer’s talent hanging over you. His story premise was entertaining. It’s always a blast to play an evil campaign. With the time restraints of a one-shot, it may feel more like you’re being ‘railroaded’ through the story than a normal open world campaign, but that’s to be expected with such a short amount of available time. I look forward to more one-shot stories from Liam and the gang!

Episode 66: A Traveler’s Gamble

Summary: The gang continues their search for the Vestiges of Divergeance. They gain an audience with the ruler of Ank’Harel, J’mon Sa Ord who offers them a powerful summoning item that could aid in their battle against the conclave. First though, Vox Machina must prove themselves in combat.

Why to Watch: This episode has a bit of everything in it. A battle with a huge Cobalt Golem. A fun filled casino night full of illicit activity. An unexpected dragon. The action and story pacing is decent, but the humor and role playing really shine through this episode. Scanlan’s “Breaking Bard” spice hunt comes to a glorious finale. Keyleth and Grog nearly get arrested during their casino night escapade.

Highlights:

The fight begins (22:55)

Grog loses it (35:08)

“At least you loved before you died” (38:30)

How do you want to do this (1:16:01) (Warning: extremely loud!)

J’mon Sa Ord Revealed (1:22:00)

Percy’s Beautiful Mind (1:34:50)

Barf Buddies (1:37:25)

Casino Night (2:05:20)

Keyleth’s graceful exit (2:11:55)

Talesin’s dice magic (2:21:45)

Breaking Bard Finale (2:27:30-2:36:33)

Grog and the ladies (2:39:15)

This is Trainspotting (2:48:10)

Is it worth it? (2:49:45)

Breaking Bard the Sequel (2:54:27)

It hurts… (2:58:10)

Just some light breaking and entering (4:00:05)

Percy’s nemesis returns (4:05:00)

Lowlights:

Story Pacing: There is a lot more hijinks and goofing around this episode, although the humor does make up for it. Nearly half the story is taken up with Scanlan’s casino night drug deal and the after effects.

Review:

Liam’s one-shot Bonus episode was a fun little break from the Vox Machina story line. Liam did a great job as a DM, especially for his first time on camera. His story premise started out really great, with the promise of sabotage and backstabbing, but ended a little shakily due to time constraints. I enjoyed watching Laura, Sam, and Travis play new characters. I am excited to see Liam return as a DM in the future.

Episode 66 had some really memorable moments. The opening fight scene was a nice warm up encounter and Vox Machina gained a powerful and unexpected Bronze Dragon ally out of it. Nearly all of the rest of the episode is devoted to a drug-fueled side quest that, although extremely funny, slowed the story progression quite a bit. I will say though, I haven’t laughed that hard during an episode in a while.

How will Percy handle Ripley’s deadly return? Has Vox Machina lost any hope of finding a Vestige of Divergence? Find out in next week’s review!

Critical Role

Critical Role
78

Mithical Rating

8/10

    Story Pacing

    8/10

      Characters

      9/10

        Action

        7/10

          Humor

          9/10

            What Works

            • Side-splitting humor
            • Exploring new characters
            • New DM shakes things up

            What Hurts

            • slow-ish story pacing
            • Time constraints influence the story

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