Everything you need to know about Vander from Riot Games’ Arcane

Get to know the burly barkeep from the Lanes.

Screengrab via Riot Games/Netflix

Riot Games’ newest animated Netflix show, Arcane, has already taken the world by storm since it made its premiere two weeks ago. The characters have been a huge talking point for fans since they’ve been able to capture our hearts in such a short period of time.

One character that many people have been discussing, however, is the barkeep of the Last Drop and Vi and Powder’s father figure, Vander. He is strong, silent, and dependable, but he has also had to make some tough decisions for not only his loved ones but for the greater good of his people.

(Spoilers ahead for anyone who hasn’t watched the show. This will also be updated as the show continues.)

Screengrab via Riot Games/Netflix

We first meet Vander in the opening moments of the first episode, where he is seen beating down a hapless opponent. This event isn’t really specified, but it is implied later that it was a failed Zaunite uprising against the higher class regime of the overworld, snuffed out by the ruthless authorities of Piltover.

As he walks away from his fallen enemy, however, he finds a distraught Vi and Powder. The two girls are slightly disoriented and had just lost their mother and father, who were killed by enforcers during the riots. Feeling compassion and empathy for the siblings, Vander picks them both up and takes them in as his own family, becoming their father figure.

A few years later, Vander is the owner of a popular bar called the Last Drop. It is situated in the Lanes, which is a diverse market in the slums of Zaun and is one of the more frequented establishments in the area. After Vi, Powder, and their ragtag group of friends return from their heist-gone-wrong, he shows how much he cares for the girls by first lecturing them about staying safe, while also giving an important lesson to Vi.

Later on, it’s revealed that he has a working relationship with a head enforcer named Greyson in order to keep Piltover out of Zaun’s business and to maintain peace in the underworld. Unfortunately, he is unwilling to give up Vi as the culprit for the mess on the top side, and as a result, Piltovan enforcers are sent into the Lanes to investigate.

Vander is also revealed to have a complex relationship with Silco, who has been one of the main antagonists of the series. It is implied that the two used to have a brother-like connection with one another until circumstances led to them coming to a brutal fight that ended in Silco being mortally wounded. This is further explored when Silco uses a Shimmered-out goon to kill Greyson, bait out Vander, and kidnap him in order to become the new, unopposed leader of the underworld.

Eventually, Vander wakes up at Silco’s makeshift base. He is beaten into submission but is almost freed by Vi, Mylo, and Claggor before Powder shows up and uses her stolen hextech crystals to cause a massive explosion that injures everyone inside. With the kids trapped under a heap of rubble, Vander is forced to fight. He crushes the Shimmer goon with expert hand-to-hand combat but is unfortunately stabbed by Silco. With his dying breath, he drinks some of the Shimmer serum and becomes a monster to protect his family one last time, and finally tells Vi to protect her sister.

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