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Vander Universe Background
Vander (Universe)Vander (Universe)

"You've got a good heart. Don't ever lose it, no matter how the world tries to break you."
Vander Vander to Vi Vi, The Base Violence Necessary For Change

Vander was a Zaun Crest icon Zaunite bartender and the adoptive father of both Vi Vi and Jinx Jinx. A talented boxer and a good-hearted man, he was widely respected by the denizens of the undercity and was willing to die for his own ideals, especially if it meant saving those that he cared about.


Early Life[]

Vander and Silco Silco were like brothers in their youth, and the two of them once fought together in order to free Zaun Crest icon Zaun from Piltover Crest icon Piltover's repressive rule. However, due to unknown circumstances, Vander eventually betrayed Silco and attempted to drown him in Zaun's polluted rivers. During the fight, Silco managed to stab Vander with his own dagger and escape back into the underground, leaving a large scar on the latter's right arm.[1]

Years later, Vander attempted to lead an uprising against Piltover due to the horrible living conditions that the citizens of Zaun were forced to endure on a daily basis. Unfortunately, the rebellion ended in a failure and dozens of Zaunites were massacred by enforcers in the ensuing battle.[2]

In the aftermath of his failed uprising, Vander stumbled across two sisters named Vi Vi and Powder Powder, who had been orphaned in the attack. Stunned by the fact that his actions had cost them the lives of their parents, Vander adopted the two girls as his own daughters and vowed to live a more peaceful life for the sake of his new family. At some point after this, he also adopted two orphaned boys as his own sons, Mylo Mylo and Claggor Claggor, and taught all four of them on how to survive and stay out of trouble.[2]

After the failed uprising, Vander took control of the Lanes of Zaun and became the head of a bar called the Last Drop, which became the main meeting ground of the undercity. He would also broker an uneasy agreement with the Piltover Police Crest enforcers of Piltover, which brought relative peace to the Lanes.[2]

Hexgem Incident[]

After a heist in Piltover by Vi and the other kids, the peace in the undercity was at risk. Since the workshop they burglarized exploded and also belonged to the Kiramman Clan Crest Kiramman Clan, the Piltover Police Crest Wardens were tasked to apprehend the perpetrators on the run.[2] Not wanting to betray his own kids, Vander refuses to indicate anyone. This decision would cause the increased Warden patrols that would anger the rest of the undercity. Vander tries to council his people to keep the peace, but many ignore him. With another uprising seemingly underway, even his Vi Vi wants to defend her home. Vander teaches Vi that violence will not solve her problems and that it is best to protect what you still have then risk losing everything.[3]

Vi takes this to heart and tries to surrender to the Wardens in order to prevent the uprising.[3][1] Learning about this plan, Vander swaps places with her and gives himself to the Wardens. However, before he could be dragged to prison, an older Silco and his shimmer-mutated henchmen ambush them, killing several wardens including Sheriff Grayson Grayson and Benzo Benzo.[1]

Captured by Silco, Vander is dragged and imprisoned in his hideout. At first Silco tries to reason with Vander, sharing his vision for the nation of Zaun Crest icon Zaun, but Vander rejects the offer stating that he is not the same person anymore.[1]

Later on Vi, Mylo and Claggor arrive to save Vander. Realizing it was a trap, Vi takes Vander's old cast iron gauntlets to fight Silco's men, trying to give enough time for Mylo and Claggor to unshackle Vander and find a way out. The events of the fight would end with Powder accidentally destroying most of the hideout with her makeshift monkey bomb, killing Mylo and Claggor and injuring Vander in the process. Trying to defend a surviving Vi, Vander takes makeshift knuckles and starts fighting the surviving henchmen; however, he is bested by them and stabbed in the gut by Silco, dropping down in a pile of vials of Shimmer. Injecting one, Vander is able to finally defeat the mutated henchmen, nearly close to defeating Silco as well, but decides to save Vi from the exploding wreckage instead.[1]

Grievously injured from the fall and the wounds he suffered from Deckard and Silco, Vander tells Vi to take care of Powder before he passes out and seemingly dies.


Following the events of Silco's coup against him, Vander was presumed dead. However, even after his supposed death and Silco's takeover of the undercity, Vander was well-respected by the people of Zaun and remembered in a positive light by many. A statue of him was also built in the Lanes, where Silco would later go to and confide in when Jayce offered him Zaun's independence in exchange for Jinx.[4]


Vander was a large and muscular middle-aged man with grey eyes, dark hair, and a neatly trimmed greying beard. He was generally seen wearing blue trousers, leather boots, a brown leather jacket over a white undershirt, and a leather pauldron on his upper right arm to cover up the scar that he got from Silco when he was young.

When Vander used Shimmer as a last resort to save Vi from Deckard, it drastically increased his muscle mass, made him grow several feet in height, and made his veins purple and pop out all over his body.


Vander is implied to have been a brutal man in his younger years. A flashback reveals an incident between him and Silco, where Vander tried to viciously drown the latter in Piltover's polluted river, despite carrying a knife with him. After leading a failed uprising against Piltover's regime that saw a tragic loss of life, Vander was forced to bear the message to Vi and Powder that their parents had lost their lives in the fighting. After witnessing the grief this bore upon the two children, Vander turned pacifist, dropping his weapons and carrying the girls away to raise them as their father.

At the time of Arcane's first act, Vander was the surrogate father of Vi, Powder, Mylo and Claggor. A caring man, Vander was always willing to protect those that need his help. He was seen as a protector by many, and he cared for the Lanes and the people in them. He governed the Lanes through a paternal authority, relying on people's gratitude and genuine respect for him to maintain order. Though turned pacifist, he defied his dogma in his final act, eventually fighting and dying to save Vi's Vi's life.


  • Brawler: Vander had a gift for hand-to-hand combat and was shown to dominate most fights he ever got involved in, even against Shimmer-enhanced opponents. He was also the one who taught Vi how to punch, a notable feat considering how skilled Vi became at boxing in her teenage years.
  • Barkeep: As the owner of The Last Drop, Vander was a skilled bartender and could make various kinds of drinks.
  • Leader: Vander was a competent and honorable leader, despite his past failings, and many Zaunites respected him for it, even after he supposedly died.
  • Teacher: As the adoptive father of four children, Vander would be their primary teacher in life and gave them just about every skill they needed to survive in Zaun. Even after his assumed death, his lessons would still resonate with them, as displayed when Vi had a hallucination of him encouraging her to work on her guard and get back up during her second fight with Sevika.


Silco Silco[]

Vander considered Silco to be his brother in their youth, and the two of them once had the same dream of freeing Zaun from Piltovan rule. However, their relationship fell apart when Vander turned on Silco and nearly killed him for unknown reasons. Despite this, Vander never truly hated Silco and eventually felt guilty about what he did to his former friend; Silco in turn still respected Vander until he chose to cooperate with Piltover to preserve peace between their two cities.

Silco plotted a second uprising against Piltover and kidnapped Vander to recruit him for his plans. Silco revealed that he plans to weaponize shimmer against Piltover and thus coerce the Piltovans to recognize Zaun as an independent nation. He offers Vander to join him, despite his betrayal. However, Vander pointed out that Silco had already killed Benzo Benzo and turned several Undercity kids into shimmer-addicted monsters. To Vander, Silco's war against Piltover isn't worth the cost. He tells Silco to kill him and get his revenge, but begs Silco to not exploit the Undercity to facilitate his war. Silco is angered that Vander would die for a cause but not fight for one. Vander responds that he isn't that man anymore, but Silco is determined to show Vander that deep down, he's still a bellicose, violent man.

Silco holds Vander prisoner in an attempt to goad his kids to attempt to save him. Once Silco trapped Vander's kids in a warehouse, he sends his goons to kill them, forcing Vander to fight off his goons. The fight was chaotic, as Powder Powder threw a bomb that took out her family and Silco's forces alike, and also left Vi Vi trapped under a pile of rubble. Vander pushed himself to recover, takes out a majority of Silco's men, and manages to strangle Silco. However, he was stabbed by Silco, thrown over the bridge, and lands on crates of shimmer. Vander injects shimmer into himself in order to defend Vi as a rage-filled shimmer monster. At the end though, rather than pursue Silco, he dies saving Vi from the collapsing building.

Silco continued to hold his old friend in high regard in the years after his death, even having a statue of Vander in the Undercity to memorialize him.

Violet Violet[]

After his failed uprising, Vander adopted Vi as his own daughter and taught her to both live a better life and be a better person than himself. He was also the one who taught her how to punch and expressed pride in her skills whenever she clobbered someone in a fight.

When Vi was a child, she could not understand why Vander prohibited the Undercity from burglarizing Piltover; especially since Piltover was a city of abundance and would send Enforcers to intrude in the Undercity's affairs. Meanwhile, Vi was made to feel less than the topsiders and wanted more for Powder as well. Vi disobeyed Vander's rules and led her gang of Undercity children to burglarize a Piltover workshop. The burglary was botched however, leading to the workshop's explosion and consequently the Enforcers aggressively searching the Undercity for the perpetrators. Vander gave Vi a talk and taught her that since she's a leader that people looked up to, she must be considerate to where she leads her followers since their fates are her responsibility.

Vi became frustrated when Vander tolerated the Enforcers' aggressive manhunt and fearing they may take Powder, wanted to fight back. Vander took Vi to the Bridge of Progress and explained to her that violence will only beget more problems and losses. He tells Vi that like her, he thought he could change things through a violent uprising, but all he accomplished was get her parents killed.

Although Vi intended to surrender herself to protect the Undercity, Vander interceded and arranged for himself to be the scapegoat for the botched burglary. Before his arrest, he told Vi that she has a good heart and to never lose it. He also urges her to persevere in spite of the harsh world that they live in and to protect their family. Even when Vander was kidnapped by Silco and he ultimately died rescuing Vi, his dying words to Vi was "Take care of Powder."

Ultimately, Vander would have a large impact on Vi, as his teachings would continue to influence her long after his death.

Powder Powder[]

After his failing uprising, Vander adopted Powder as his own daughter and taught her to both live a better life and be a better person than himself. Although Powder had a good relationship with Vander, the intense guilt and trauma that she suffered from accidentally killing him with one of her makeshift grenades would haunt her for years after his death and cause her great pain whenever she thought of him.

Arcane Show Appearances[]

Season One appearances: 3/9
Welcome to the Playground:
Some Mysteries Are Better Left Unsolved:
The Base Violence Necessary for Change:
Appears and flashback
Happy Progress Day!:
Everybody Wants to Be My Enemy:
Mentioned only
When These Walls Come Tumbling Down:
Mentioned only
The Boy Savior:
Mentioned only
Oil and Water:
The Monster You Created:
Illusion only

Read More

Starring Champion

Caitlyn Jayce Jinx Vi Viktor Arcane Promo 01

Runeterra Crest icon


Arcane (TV Series)

Every legend has a beginning.

Mentioned Champion

Council Archives 01

Piltover Crest icon

Short Story

The Council Archives

By Ty Sheedlo

The Council Archives. You'd heard stories at the Academy, of course, but words could not describe the breathtaking magnitude of its contents. The entire history of your city: its glorious achievements, its sinister secrets, painstakingly documented, waiting to be read.


  • Vander's official height is 202 cm (6'7.5).[5]
  • With the release of Arcane, fans have speculated that Vander might be Warwick Warwick before he was transformed into a werewolf-like mutant by Singed Singed's experiments. Although this has yet to be officially confirmed by Riot, there are several clues in both the animated series and the video game that hint towards this:
    • Vander's alias, "The Hound of the Underground", is similar to Warwick's alias, "The Uncaged Wrath of Zaun".
    • Vander is called a lapdog by Silco.
    • Both Warwick and Vander were once criminals who put down their weapons to live a better life.
    • Vander is the one who taught Vi Vi how to punch, and one of Warwick's lines towards her is ▶️   "Who taught you how to punch?".
    • Another one of Warwick's lines, ▶️   "You were there…", is addressed towards Jinx and is a possible reference to her being present next to Vander's body after her bombs destroyed Silco's hideout.
    • Warwick's theme is heard during Vander's capture and shortly before his death.
    • After he ingested Shimmer, Vander's physique, voice, and growl became similar to Warwick's.
    • During her mental breakdown in the final episode of Arcane's 1st season, Jinx pictures Vander with a wolf-like outline around him.


See also[]