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Apologies in advance, Bethesda, for ruining it.

"The Elder Scrolls Online: Blackwood - Part One: Death & Taxes" (Sx55) is the first part of Critical Role's planned The Elder Scrolls Online: Blackwood series, sponsored by Bethesda and ZeniMax Online Studios. Game Master Matthew Mercer leads Laura Bailey, Taliesin Jaffe, Sam Riegel, Michelle Nguyen Bradley, and Aabria Iyengar as they play a group of restaurateurs in an adventure inspired by The Elder Scrolls Online: Blackwood.



This episode is sponsored by Bethesda and ZeniMax Online Studios for their upcoming 2021 release of The Elder Scrolls Online: Blackwood. Matt is super excited: he loves the Elder Scrolls and he and Marisha even named their pet bird, Dagon, after a character featured in this update.

Part I


Part II

Featured Characters

Player Characters

Official art of the proprietors of the Dreary Jug: Grelnok, Tavima, Slaughter, Mallory, and Hoa, by Minttu Hynninen.[art 1]

Non-player Characters

  • Diven Leson, an Aldmeri tax collector
  • An unnamed treasure-seeker
  • Unnamed Bosmer soldiers
  • An unnamed Grahtwood farmer


  • Lyranth, a dremora treasure-seeker
  • Massacre Grimm, Slaughter's father, an argonian necromantic torturer
  • Felony Grimm-Lebowitz, Slaughter's mother, an argonian necromantic torturer
  • Homicide Grimm, Slaughter's brother, an argonian necromantic torturer
  • Agony Grimm, Slaughter's sister, an argonian necromantic torturer


  • Diven Leson: What can you tell me about this place? What's it called?
    Hoa: Um, it's called the… Dingy… the Jug of… the, um, Dirty, uh, Drinking Hole… What's the name of this place again?
    Slaughter: The Dr—
    Grelnok: The Dirty Hole. That's right.
    Tavima: "The Dirty Hole"?
    Hoa: The Dirty Ho— That doesn't sound right.
    Slaughter: The Dreary Jug!
    Grelnok: The Dreary Jug.
    Hoa: Oh, it's that, yes. It's the Dreary Jug. I'd forgotten.
    Diven Leson: Well, I recommend perhaps maybe workshopping that a bit, seeing as it's a bit challenging to remember and/or present. But anyway…
    Hoa: Wow! Do you work in marketing?
    Diven Leson: More or less, you could say. Hm!
    Hoa: Tell me more!
    Diven Leson: Well, um…
    Hoa: Where did you grow up? Where did you learn to do marketing? What does 'marketing' really mean?
    Diven Leson: You're—you're new at management here, aren't you?
    Hoa: Um… Aren't we all new beings on this beautiful planet that we call, hmm…
    Matt (stage-whispered): Nirn.
    Tavima: Nirn.
    Hoa: Nirn. (Winks at camera.)
    Taliesin: Walked into that one.
    Hoa: I mean, I think that every place is new and exciting, and it's great to learn about every single thing that you may set your eyes upon.[2]
  • Grelnok (Referring to the secret entrance to a subterranean tunnel reputed to lead to treasure): How is it that this was right behind the bar the whole time?
    Tavima: Right?
    Grelnok: In our shed?
    Hoa: It's very coincidental that we need money and we found it right away.
    Slaughter: But also—could be a selling point.
    Tavima: True.
    Slaughter: You know, like, "Come to the Dirty Hole, and if you spend a certain amount, you get a quick tour of the… the dirty hole."
    Hoa: Oh, like an escape room thing!
    Slaughter: An escape room is a great idea!
    Hoa: Yes!
    Slaughter: It's like a theme restaurant now!
    Hoa: Yes!
    Mallory: I am on board with this.
    Hoa: I love it.
    Tavima: Yes. This is very good.
    Grelnok: I like it. I like it.
    Mallory: Themed menus.
    Tavima: And now it makes sense to call it—
    Grelnok and Tavima: "The Dingy Hole"!
    Tavima: Yes!
    Grelnok: Really.
    Slaughter: It's a theme restaurant.
    Hoa: Well, it's not, it can't, it doesn't have to be "Dingy". We can make it really nice in here, put lights up, and it could be "The G—"
    Slaughter: "The Glory Hole"?
    Grelnok: (Points approvingly.)
    Hoa: "A Really Nice Hole"?
    Slaughter: A Really Nice Hole.
    Grelnok: A Really Nice Hole.
    Slaughter: "Come to our Really Nice Hole. Take a look!"
    Hoa: It sounds better than "Dingy" to me!
    Grelnok: "Take a look at our Really Nice Hole!"
    Mallory: Hole in the Hill. I don't know.
    Hoa: "It's nice. And exciting. And you must escape from it."
    Slaughter: We're still workshoppin', we're still workshoppin'.
    Grelnok: Yup.
    Hoa: I write it down.[3]
  • Tavima: This door sucks.[4]
  • Matt: You come to consciousness, healing up three points.
    Grelnok: (Gasps.) We got it?
    Tavima: I can't believe that worked.
    Mallory: More or less.
    Tavima: You missed Slaughter's skull kill it!
    Hoa: The skull worked!
    Slaughter: I'm a hero!
    Grelnok: I don't believe it.
    Slaughter: Come on! Come on!
    Grelnok: No. Didn't happen. Didn't happen.
    Tavima: No, it did happen…
    Hoa: He did. It was glorious. It was very nice.
    Grelnok: That's sweet, that you guys want… Mmm. Didn't happen.
    Tavima: She's not going to believe me.
    Slaughter: It's all right. I'll prove myself with diligent waitstaffing.[5]


  • Part Two, announced at the beginning of "What Comes Next" (Ex08), will air on August 19, 2021. A third and final installment was announced the next day to be scheduled for September or early October 2021.[6]


  1. See "The Elder Scrolls Online: Blackwood - Part One: Death & Taxes" (Sx55) at 2:00.
  2. See "The Elder Scrolls Online: Blackwood - Part One: Death & Taxes" (Sx55) at 19:27.
  3. See "The Elder Scrolls Online: Blackwood - Part One: Death & Taxes" (Sx55) at 1:22:57.
  4. See "The Elder Scrolls Online: Blackwood - Part One: Death & Taxes" (Sx55) at 2:35:57.
  5. See "The Elder Scrolls Online: Blackwood - Part One: Death & Taxes" (Sx55) at 3:27:50.
  6. Critical Role Logo.png 2021 Late Summer & Early Autumn Programming Updates on


  1. Official art of the proprietors of the Dreary Jug: Grelnok, Tavima, Slaughter, Mallory, and Hoa, by Minttu Hynninen.  "The Elder Scrolls Online: Blackwood - Part One: Death & Taxes" (Sx55) at 0:04:09