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Critical Role Wiki

"Talks Machina #43: 'The Chapter Closes'" (TMx43) is the forty-third episode of Talks Machina.


Questions Part I[]

  • Question for Matt: "Matt, if Sam had saved his Wish spell, would it have saved Vax or would the Raven Queen have taken him anyway?"
    • There might have been a chance to change some things, but completely breaking a pact with a god is almost impossible.[1]
  • Brian asked Liam as a follow up if Liam would have wanted someone to save him. Liam wanted Vax to have a happy ending, but knew that it probably wouldn't happen. He hoped Vax would get to retire to Zephrah with Keyleth and possibly have children if Keyleth had wanted to.[2] By the end of the campaign, Vax was committed to the Raven Queen and had faith in her. He would not have tried to get out of the deal.[3]
  • Question for Sam: "Did you have the precise wording planned out for Wish? If so, what was it?"
    • Sam did not have an exact wording in mind, but he had two general thoughts. One thought was to Wish that the Raven Queen not be able to sense Vecna's defeat, buying Vox Machina time to ask another god to bargain with the Raven Queen on Vax's behalf. Matt said depending on how the Wish was worded that may have worked. Liam said Vax would never have gone along with that.[4] Sam's idea for if the Raven Queen showed up immediately after the battle, was to Wish for delaying the bargain until the end of Keyleth's or Vax's natural life. Matt said that using Wish to get some kind of a delay was what he was expecting.[5]
  • Question for Taliesin: "Did you always have it in Percy's backstory that he wanted to be a clockmaker?"
    • Taliesin was not sure what to do with Percy after his plan with the Raven Queen did not work and he remembered the original short story that he had made about Percy five years ago. He was trying to figure out how to bring Percy back from the edge because Percy was about to snap.[6]
  • Question for Liam: "Was Vax more worried about leaving Vex behind or Keyleth?"
    • Keyleth because Vex had someone to be with and a future.[7]
  • Question for everyone: "What do you make of the unintentional foreshadowing of the importance of ravens in Kit Buss's first CR art piece?"
    • Everyone enjoyed it.[8]

GIF of the Week[]

GIF of the Week winner was @yumyumcabanossi with a GIF of Grog pulling a card from the Deck of Many Things, Scanlan teasing Grog that Percy had lost his arm, and ending with #NoRegrets.

Questions Part II[]

  • Question for Sam: "What's it like going from 'the dorkiest combination of race/class ever' to the literal MVP of the hardest fight?"
    • Sam was the most surprised of everyone because he had no expectations going into the first game going into the stream. Liam picked his race and class when they created characters; and Liam will do that again for the next campaign. Sam was legitimately proud of himself and his strategy in the final fight.[9]
  • Question for Liam: "Did you anticipate the Raven Queen coming so early? Did you expect her sooner?"
    • Liam expected her as soon as the battle was over. He loved how Matt waited until a positive moment where everyone was happy seeing the city realize it was saved.[10]
  • Brian asked Matt to follow up if that was how he intended the Raven Queen's appearance to go. Matt wanted to give Vax the chance to see the people they have saved and see that he had truly changed the world. He thought it would make the moment more bittersweet.[11] Matt added that if it weren't for the deal allowing Vax to sense Vecna's location, Vasselheim probably would have been destroyed. When Matt first planned the encounter, he was expecting Vox Machina to arrive as the city was being destroyed.[12]
  • Question for Taliesin: "Had Percy not been stopped in his tracks by the Matron of Ravens, what would his plan have been to save Vax?"
    • Percy was going to sell his soul using his contract from the Nine Hells to get the right to bring Vax back and try to do it without anyone noticing.[13] Matt had a whole speech planned for the Raven Queen if anyone had tried to argue with her that Vax should stay. She was going to tell them about how insignificant they are and that all mortals are the instruments of divinity. Percy trying to physically approach the Raven Queen ensured that she was not going to hear him out or let him interfere. Taliesin said Percy wanted to save Vax but also just get revenge on the Raven Queen for calling him broken. Liam pointed out that Percy's last words to Vax were indignant and irritated, a callback to an earlier episode.[14][15]

Fan Art of the Week[]

Fan Art of the Week winner was Olivia Rea with a three panel piece of Vax saying goodbye to Vex and Keyleth then walking into the Raven Queen's cloak.

Questions Part III[]

  • Question for Sam: "Who did Scanlan and Kaylie take over for them as the Meat Man?"
    • Sam said he isn't sure. They didn't really have any noteworthy employees.[16] Matt followed up with one of his favorite fan theories that he thinks has to be canon now that Lionel Gayheart is a duck that Scanlan cast True Polymorph on and turned into a half-orc.[17] Sam suggested that if that was true, Scanlan cast True Polymorph on another duck to become the new Meat Man.[18]
  • Question for Liam: "How long do you think it took Vex to realize that Vax walked off into the afterlife wearing the Boots of Haste?"
    • Liam laughed that it was Vax's last prank and Laura probably just realized it watching this episode.[19]
  • Question for Matt: "Can you tell us a bit about Gilmore, Kima, Allura, and Velora's epilogues?"
    • Matt will save most of that for the campaign wrap up episode, but he will say a little bit now. Velora now wants to be more like Vex and stories she hears about Vax. That rubs off on Syldor and changes his perspective on a lot of things about the society of Syngorn. Gilmore is doing well. He rebuilds the Westruun store and might be expanding to Whitestone. He visits his parents in Marquet regularly now. He's handed off the store in Emon mostly to Sherri and travels more often. Allura is still one of the key figures of the Tal'Dorei Council. Matt reminded them that someone had suggested back in the second session of their home game in Westruun that someone suggested they talk to Kima, but she was not available. Now Kima and Allura have a home in Westruun that they go back and forth between there and Emon.[20]
  • Liam asked a follow up to the fact that Kima had been mentioned so early in the game. He wondered if Matt had intended Kima to become a fixture of the story. Matt did not intend that to happen. Which NPCs ended up being the most important has been mostly up to the players and how they choose to build the relationships with them.[21]
  • Question for Sam: "Was Scanlan blindsided by Pike reciprocating feelings, or did you always know if your heart of hearts?"
    • Sam did not know. He was pleasantly surprised and thought it was a great ending.[22] Sam said that he just remembered Scanlan had once advised Vax to "leave the shit behind"[23] and Vax did, in fact, leave the SHITS behind.[24]
  • Question for Liam: "How did you get the idea for that last level in Druid?"
    • Liam did not think he was going to make it to level 20 so it was just a thought of what would happen if Vax did live on. He told Matt a few days before the last episode that if Vax was not immediately taken by the Raven Queen and got to level up, that was what he would do.[25]
  • Question for Matt: "Why did the use of the contract fail?"
    • The contract was not used. What Percy tried to do was communicate with the contract holder and that failed. Percy could still have chosen to invoke the contract, but he did not. Matt had a few ideas ready depending on what Percy asked for if he used it.[26]
  • Question for Sam: "Mrs. Pike Shorthalt or Mr. Scanlan Trickfoot?"
    • Sam said the modern thing to do is combine the last names so it is now Scanlan Shortfoot.[27]

Talks Machina in the Dark Locker Room[]

  • Question for Taliesin: "Thanks so much for being willing to go through with it, but how relieved were you Ipkesh didn't reply?"
    • He wasn't relieved; he was panicked. He was trying to figure out a way out for Percy. If Ipkesh had replied, it would have been easier to figure out how to end Percy's story. It eventually led to a great epiphany, but it was overwhelming at first.[28]
  • Question for Sam: "Was your pre-written ending for Tary significantly different than the one Matt brought in?
    • Sam had not written a long term ending. He had written a short letter that Vox Machina would have received shortly after the final fight. It was about how things are going with the Darrington Brigade. The only difference was that in Sam's version Doty 3.0 had died, and there was now a Doty 4.0. Since Tary was out of money, Doty 4 was just an arm, an eye, and a tricycle. It can still write but that's all.[29]
  • Question for Matt: "Has Gilmore ever come across the information that Vax had died for the final time and what was his reaction?"
    • Gilmore definitely knows and mourned in his own way. He probably has visited Keyleth and talked about Vax with her. He probably made a line of raven-themed items for his stores in Vax's name. Gilmore thinks back on his time with Vox Machina fondly and was honored to have been part of their story.[30]
  • Question for everyone: "What VOs in the industry would you love to see voice some of the favorite NPCs?"
  • Question for Matt: "Did Victor survive?"
    • Victor did survive and one of the large explosions Vox Machina heard would have been his house. Once it was announced to the city that an all out war was coming, he would have rigged his whole house to be a giant bomb.[32]
  • Question for Matt: "Did you see the paladin Oath of Turnt that Brian posted and would you allow it in the new campaign?"
    • A fan made an Oath of Turnt based on things Brian has said during Talks Machina. Brian's favorite 30 Rock quote- "Never go with a hippie to a second location."- was one of the three tenants of the Oath.[33]
  • Question for Matt: "Do you still have the golden snitch?"
    • Matt does still have it and Taliesin got something out of the deal where Matt got to keep it.[34]
  • Question for Taliesin: "For giggles and the S.H.I.T.S., what is one of Percy and Vex's children's full names?"
    • Laura and Taliesin have not had time to talk about it in detail, but they agreed that one of them is Percival Fredrickstein von Musel Klossowski de Rolo IV.[35]
  • Question for either Matt or Liam: "Vax'ildan's afterlife was never touched upon. What is it like?"
    • Liam preferred to keep it a mystery. Matt left the final scene with Vax vague on purpose. He also might want to explore those mysteries in a future campaign so he didn't want to tie himself down with anything.[36]
  • Question for everyone: "What are you most afraid of in playing new characters?"
    • Sam is most afraid of falling into the same patterns and playing a too similar character to Scanlan. Liam is afraid of but also excited about trying to top this campaign. Taliesin is afraid of all the weird accents everyone will be trying.[37]


  • Liam (referring to Vax): "While he strips naked a lot, he clearly has no class."[38]
  • Matt: "When you guys latched on and elevated [NPCs] they became more prominent in the story and I think anyone who's ever run a game of D&D can definitely back me up on that. Some of the characters you never expected to become central, do. The players just find something to connect with, something about those characters they end up falling in love with, and end up wanting to go back to them over and over again; and are intrigued by what their history and personality is and then you flesh them out."[39]


  1. See "Talks Machina #43: 'The Chapter Closes'" (TMx43) from 18:59 through 20:40.
  2. See "Talks Machina #43: 'The Chapter Closes'" (TMx43) from 21:52 through 23:10.
  3. See "Talks Machina #43: 'The Chapter Closes'" (TMx43) at 25:08.
  4. See "Talks Machina #43: 'The Chapter Closes'" (TMx43) from 26:18 through 29:09.
  5. See "Talks Machina #43: 'The Chapter Closes'" (TMx43) from 29:09 through 30:23.
  6. See "Talks Machina #43: 'The Chapter Closes'" (TMx43) from 31:48 through 34:40.
  7. See "Talks Machina #43: 'The Chapter Closes'" (TMx43) from 35:54 through 36:18.
  8. See "Talks Machina #43: 'The Chapter Closes'" (TMx43) at 36:20.
  9. See "Talks Machina #43: 'The Chapter Closes'" (TMx43) from 39:01 through 40:56.
  10. See "Talks Machina #43: 'The Chapter Closes'" (TMx43) from 41:59 through 42:33.
  11. See "Talks Machina #43: 'The Chapter Closes'" (TMx43) at 42:33.
  12. See "Talks Machina #43: 'The Chapter Closes'" (TMx43) from 44:00 through 44:39.
  13. See "Talks Machina #43: 'The Chapter Closes'" (TMx43) at 45:28.
  14. See "The Temple Showdown" (1x11) at 2:47:13.
  15. See "Talks Machina #43: 'The Chapter Closes'" (TMx43) at 47:56.
  16. See "Talks Machina #43: 'The Chapter Closes'" (TMx43) at 49:56.
  17. See "Talks Machina #43: 'The Chapter Closes'" (TMx43) at 50:21.
  18. See "Talks Machina #43: 'The Chapter Closes'" (TMx43) at 50:51.
  19. See "Talks Machina #43: 'The Chapter Closes'" (TMx43) at 51:58.
  20. See "Talks Machina #43: 'The Chapter Closes'" (TMx43) from 53:00 through 54:46.
  21. See "Talks Machina #43: 'The Chapter Closes'" (TMx43) at 54:46.
  22. See "Talks Machina #43: 'The Chapter Closes'" (TMx43) at 56:08.
  23. See "Those Who Walk Away" (1x45) at 2:32:27.
  24. See "Talks Machina #43: 'The Chapter Closes'" (TMx43) at 57:55.
  25. See "Talks Machina #43: 'The Chapter Closes'" (TMx43) from 58:29 through 59:52.
  26. See "Talks Machina #43: 'The Chapter Closes'" (TMx43) from 1:00:12 through 1:01:16.
  27. See "Talks Machina #43: 'The Chapter Closes'" (TMx43) from 1:01:28 through 1:01:56.
  28. See "Talks Machina #43: 'The Chapter Closes'" (TMx43) from 1:03:41 through 1:04:36.
  29. See "Talks Machina #43: 'The Chapter Closes'" (TMx43) from 1:05:09 through 1:07:12.
  30. See "Talks Machina #43: 'The Chapter Closes'" (TMx43) from 1:07:22 through 1:08:25.
  31. See "Talks Machina #43: 'The Chapter Closes'" (TMx43) from 1:08:29 through 1:09:14.
  32. See "Talks Machina #43: 'The Chapter Closes'" (TMx43) from 1:09:18 through 1:10:44.
  33. See "Talks Machina #43: 'The Chapter Closes'" (TMx43) from 1:10:58 through 1:11:53.
  34. See "Talks Machina #43: 'The Chapter Closes'" (TMx43) at 1:11:54.
  35. See "Talks Machina #43: 'The Chapter Closes'" (TMx43) from 1:13:00 through 1:13:33.
  36. See "Talks Machina #43: 'The Chapter Closes'" (TMx43) from 1:13:48 through 1:15:02.
  37. See "Talks Machina #43: 'The Chapter Closes'" (TMx43) from 1:15:22 through 1:17:32.
  38. See "Talks Machina #43: 'The Chapter Closes'" (TMx43) at 52:21.
  39. See "Talks Machina #43: 'The Chapter Closes'" (TMx43) at 55:06.