With Voltron: Legendary Defenders season three due out on August 4th, we wanted to revisit some of our favorite moments from the series, and share what we hope to see in the new season. Be forewarned: there are spoilers ahead for Voltron: Lengendary Defenders seasons one and two!
Maybe it’s campy and predictable, but the first time team Voltron forms Voltron itself had me bouncing in my seat. The sequence is beautifully animated, and there’s nothing quite so satisfying as watching the giant robot take down an enemy cruiser and save the day. Voltron itself is a lovely piece of 3D modeling, and it was great to see this disparate group of heroes band together for the first time.
Pidge has always had a special place in my heart. Tech-savvy, female bodied, and an all around badass who carries their own weight while also keeping an eye out for their family; Pidge is a cornerstone of Team Voltron. They’re smart as hell and their attunement with both tech and nature plays on the beautiful duality of their skill sets and identity. Their reveal was not quite what I wanted it to be (the girl-masquerading-as-boy trope, though one I sometimes enjoy, was disappointing here), but I appreciate Pidge’s non-binary leanings and can’t wait for the show runners to confirm their identity as cannon.
Shiro and PTSD
Speaking of characters that are near and dear, Shiro’s character is one that stands out, and makes him a highlight of the series. Voltron depicts his struggles with PTSD after being a Galra prisoner for years in an honest, open way that I had not expected to see on screen. There are moments where he’s frozen by flashbacks, plagued by nightmares, but he is never alone in dealing with these moments and memories. The other Paladins step up, be it by helping or just by being understanding, and those moments linger with the viewer even after they’ve passed. I appreciate that his trauma is addressed, rather than just skipped over, and it makes his character more empathetic as the series progresses.
At the end of season one, Team Voltron learns the truth about the former Paladin of the Black Lion: that he is the now Emperor of the Galra Empire, Zarkon. Though it was easy to read between the lines–given Zarkon’s costume design and the numerous pieces of foreshadowing dropped throughout the series–this reveal drove home just how much damage Zarkon could do if he acquired Voltron. I hope we get more of his back story in the future, as I’d be curious to see what changed in him to direct him from the path of the Black Lion’s Paladin, to the Emperor of the Galra Empire.
Paladins Coming into Their Own
Early in season two, each Paladin bonds further with their lion and unlocks new abilities. To do this, however, each Paladin learns a bit more about themselves in the process. Though season two focused more heavily on Pidge, Keith, and Shiro, and their growth respectively and as teammates, Hunk and Lance come to discover their own places on Team Voltron, and how they build up the others in their own way. Rumor has that season three will give us more depth to Hunk and Lance as well, and I’m eager to see how they grow beyond the food-loving big guy and cocky hot-shot we’ve seen thus far.
Meeting the Blade of Marmora
Season one drove home the fact that Team Voltron would be unable to defeat Zarkon and the Galra Empire alone. Season two began to reveal allies that have been in the fight much longer than the Paladin’s had been around for. The Blade of Marmora is the first strong ally Team Voltron acquires, and the nuances of earning trust and overcoming biases makes this team up interesting. Keith is revealed to have Galra blood, and Allura is forced to come to terms with her racist perceptions of all Galra as killers and despots. Even the team has to come to terms with this revelation and examine their own understanding of the Galra, though it proves to only strengthen their bonds, rather than tear them apart.
The Final Showdown
The culmination of season two hit hard and fast. Team Voltron and the Blade of Marmora made their move against Zarkon, isolating his command ship and fighting him directly. Hagar’s Altean identity was revealed as Allura and a few of the Blades intervened to prevent the Druid’s magic from affecting Voltron a second time, and Shiro and Zarkon went toe-to-toe one last time for control of the Black Lion. The final combat sequence is beautifully animated, using dynamic lines and the base colors of each Paladin’s lion as they all wielded their bayard weapons to defeat Zarkon once and for all.
The two-episode finale hits both major action and emotional beats, teasing what’s to come (there was more to the Galra Empire than just Zarkon) and pulling at one’s heartstrings as the team’s left reeling at the sudden loss of Shiro. The victory is bittersweet, and appears to be only one step on the longer journey of dismantling a galaxy-spanning empire.
There were a lot of great moments in the first two seasons of Voltron: Legendary Defenders, from character growth to stunning animation. The series is not without its flaws, but it’s a delightful ride, and we can’t wait to see what’s next. Season three airs on Netflix August 4th!
Like this post? Check out some of our other posts below!!