Also known as “Keith Needs a F***ing Hug.”
So I’m a fan of the new Voltron series, and figured why not try to review season 3 episode-by-episode as I watch? No, I haven’t binged all of it yet, because I wanna make sure every review is as authentic as possible. I do this for you people.
Now keep in mind that I have almost no knowledge of the original Voltron series (Or whatever animes made them up, because I’ve heard the craziest things about it.), so if I’m not catching something veterans are, please don’t burn me at the stake. With that said, let’s dive right into this wonderful piece of western anime (Yes, it is up there with RWBY, Steven Universe, and Star v. The Forces of Evil. Deal with it.)
The last season finale left us with Zarkon being severely wounded in a grand battle, and thus the Galra Empire is kinda… a hot mess right now (Emphasis on “hot” with someone we meet later.). But in the chaos, Shiro went missing. His Paladin is intact, but he’s gone: possibly not dead, since his body wasn’t inside the Black Lion (No body, no death.), but with this show I don’t doubt they’d be willing to kill him off. He kinda had a lot of death flags to begin with.
Keith is now searching in the Red Lion for any clues to Shiro’s whereabouts, with no luck. Keith looked up to Shiro, more so than everyone else, making the loss especially hard on him (And much, much more heart-wrenching for us Sheith shippers… hey, I ship everyone with everyone, lemme have this.). Everyone else has seemed to have accepted Shiro’s “death,” but Keith can’t bring himself to, and that’s one of the primary focuses of this episode.
And while that’s happening, Allura is getting ready for a diplomatic meeting to form a coalition against the Galra Empire with the recently liberated planets with the help of Coran, and… oh, how I love Coran.
Normally I can’t stand characters meant for comic relief, but because of the show’s fantastic writers, Coran is a fully fleshed out character who does realize the gravity of the situation. This is just his way of dealing with it.
But Coran is right: these people need faith. They need hope to fight back against the Galra. Normally, that’d be Voltron, but with Shiro gone, the Paladins can’t form Voltron. So now, it’s up to Allura, the Princess of Altea – a world destroyed by the Galra – to rally the people. And now with the Galra Empire in shambles, it’s the perfect time.
I’m so happy to see Allura be given such a vital role in the series. I don’t know much about her role in the old series, but I absolutely love her in the new one; she’s honestly my favorite character (That I also have to credit to her wonderful design and the great voice acting by Kimberly Brooks.).
Also, did anyone else think Allura was crying when Coran first entered the room? Or was that just me? (Allura and Shiro shippers, get your pitchforks.)
After that kinda bittersweet scene, we get right into the action: Lance, Hunk, and the Blade of Marmora battle against the remaining Galra forces on Puig (Thank you, Netflix captions.) and free it from the Empire. I was surprised to see how well Lance and Hunk are considering the recent loss of Shiro, but I’m not sure how long it’s been between the season 2 finale and the season 3 premiere, so I suppose it’s up to interpretation.
What I especially loved was seeing Lance and Hunk strategize during their battle. They thought quick and on their feet, and managed to overcome the Galra forces despite some setbacks. And Lance taking charge I love for his character development; he is truly the Sokka of this series.
And immediately after he’s back to his old, fun-loving Lance self. I’d be angry, but he totally deserves it, so go nuts, buddy.
The people of Puig are grateful to the Paladins, but the Blade of Mamora… not so much. It’s the same issue Allura had with Keith last season with the revelation of Keith being half Galra (Still love the fanart with Keith with kitty ears; adorable – he can now be besties with Blake.), and I’m happy the show is acknowledging it.
It’s similar to the attitudes towards the Fire Nation in Avatar: The Last Airbender. It’s understandable, given how the Galra Empire has enslaved countless planets and ruined so many lives (Not even counting all the lives they’ve taken by now.), but it doesn’t justify branding all Galra as evil.
That’s to me why I still defend the episode “The Headband” of Avatar. A lot of people view it as wasteful filler, especially since it’s part of the last season of the show, but I beg to differ. It showed us that the people of the Fire Nation are human. They’re regular people blissfully unaware of what their country is doing, mostly because of the propoganda being shoved down their throats every single day. It takes so much time and effort to change that, but it’s ultimately worth it.
Pidge, meanwhile, is trying to decipher where her brother Matthew could be. She’s been searching for her family since the Galra Empire took them (When they also took Shiro.) during their mission of Kerberos. Pidge managed to get an image of Matt being taken, but can’t identify who exactly took them. Either he and Samuel – their father – have been taken by pirates (Fashionable pirates if Coran is to be believed.), or taken by freedom fighters at the edges of the galaxy. Let’s hope it’s the latter.
Also a moment for Coran in his full glory.
Bless this man.
Meanwhile at the Evil League of Evil (Yes, that joke is still glorious.), Zarkon is still recovering from the Epic Battle of Epicness… don’t judge me, okay? There’s no official name of it as far as I know. Haggar is overseeing his treatment, and I… am quite concerned.
Throk has been planning to take the Galra throne by force, since he doesn’t trust Prince Lotor to be in command (More on that later.), but a certain someone has overheard his plot. What I’m thinking about now is if Haggar has any plans of her own.
Last season we learned that Haggar is actually an Altean, but she poses as a Galra to serve Zarkon. I hope we get to learn why she chose to work under Zarkon; I mean, the guy exterminated her entire planet. Maybe it’ll also give Zarkon some more development besides him being the former Paladin of the Black Lion. We shall see, I suppose.
The meeting is… tense as hell. I was expecting it to center around the Blade of Marmora not being trusted by the diplomats of these recently liberated planets, but instead if came right from Keith. The diplomats want to be assured that their coalition will be backed by Voltron, but without Shiro, the Paladins can no longer form their great hope for defeating the Galra Empire and freeing the galaxy.
Keith loses it in a fit and admits that Shiro is gone, which I’m assuming the others were trying to keep under wraps. Whether the coalition will dissolve due to Voltron being lost for now is yet to be seen, but I hope they follow Keith’s advice to stand up for themselves. If they don’t, even Voltron won’t be able to help them. We need to throw all of our forces at full strength at the Empire, or we’re all screwed.
Also, pizza rolls. For life.
And now… the big reveal…
God dammit… I wanna hate him, but he’s beautiful. Fuck. The shippers are gonna lose it.
We’ve heard interesting things about Lotor: he’s exiled; he fights alongside his men; his tops generals aren’t pure Galra; and he might even allow the planets he conquers to rule themselves. At first I thought he might be chill, but… nah.
His methods seem entirely different than Zarkon’s, and arguably much more efficient. He’s still a ruthless, power-hungry tyrant (With fabulous hair, might I say?), but he knows how to work a crowd. He knows how easy it is to manipulate the people to win them over to his side, and that’s exactly what he’s done. He kicks Throk’s ass and announces he’ll allow him to fight alongside him, then orders him to be transferred to the Ulippa System to “rot with the ice warms.” Lovely guy.
And his top Generals have such interesting designs. I wanna know how exactly they’ve come to work under Lotor, and why they pledge themselves to him. Specifically the chameleon one and the creepy hooded one with the weird bat thingy I’m very intrigued by. Can’t wait to see battles with these guys.
And at last, the team tries to reason with Keith about the loss of Shiro. We see that it has in fact taken a huge toll on everyone. And if anyone gets how Keith feels, it’s Allura: she lost her father, her people, and her entire planet. But she knows she has to keep moving forward (Thank you, Monty Oum.) for the good of the entire galaxy. The mission of defeating the Galra Empire and freeing the galaxy is much, much bigger than even just one planet, because if the Empire isn’t defeated, many more planets will die.
And with that, we’re ready to find a way to form Voltron again… COUGH MAKE ALLURA THE BLACK PALADIN COUGH PLEASE COUGH. Cough.
I’m gonna be trying to get these reviews out as frequently as possible, so be sure to look out for those! YAY, TIME TO BINGE.
In other news, it’s an urban fantasy new adult book entitled De Cineribus. I’m now in the second draft phase of it, but if you’re interested, then I’ve got a page set up to give you a rundown of the synopsis as well as a look into the world and the characters, and I’ve posted the rough first chapter here on my blog. All for you. Aren’t I considerate?
Til next time, happy nerding!