So, being the technologically telepathic beings you are, you may have noticed I am not Irina .. (awww) – yeah, I know, sucks, right? Well, hopefully not too much because I’m here to talk about something I’m really excited about and I hope you will be too!
[Also, Irina is the Queen of GIFs and I am unworthy, but I’m going to do my best!]
I’m Jordanne and I’m writing here today because Irina is over writing on my blog, Bloodthirsty Little Beasts, talking about the first Manga she ever read – which you should definitely go check out because it’s awesome! Or, you know, if the separation anxiety is already too much.
This came about because among my other superpowers, such as consuming extraordinary amounts of tea, avoiding physical exercise at all costs, and talking too much, I seem to have acquired the ability to convince otherwise sane people to let me hi-jack their blogs, pretty neat, huh?
Joking aside, this is something I approached Irina with not that long ago and being the unbelievably nice and awesome person she is, she accepted with more enthusiasm than I could have hoped for and I am very, very thankful.
This is a new experience for me blogging-wise, for many reasons, the main one being I’m a book blogger and almost always write about books and almost always on my blog, but here I am talking about an animated TV show and a very different (much cooler) blog.
‘What’s going on then?’ You might ask. ‘Are you having an existential crisis?’
Not quite, but I am very excited about this post!
I was introduced to Voltron: Legendary Defender by the podcast, Geek History Lesson, when one of the hosts did an episode on it. Now I’ve liked everything else this podcast has recommended so when I had a week off work recently and saw it on Netflix, I thought I’d check it out and it broke my brain.
I haven’t binge-watched six seasons of a show in a very long time but I did with this one and I just loved every second. I was window-shopping merch before the end of the first episode (it’s a special 1-hour long one to set the foundation, no shame). I immediately wanted to share my new love and recommend the hell out of this show to everyone I knew but, as with all the posts I write that I’m especially excited about, I wanted to make it a little special, and so I approached Irina with my proposal.
Context: Voltron: Legendary Defender is most easily described as Power Rangers meets Transformers but way, way, way better than both combined multiplied by, like, 10. Five chosen Paladins fly five robot lions that, when they come together, form the robot Voltron, Defender of the Universe and have adventures in space – yes, it is so cool!
SIDENOTE – I know this is an Anime blog and I also know Voltron is not Anime … *in a rush* but, it is Anime-inspired animation, though, and I hoped that would be okay? It is? Great!
Enough of me now though, let’s get on with the list!
8 Reasons You Should Watch Voltron: Legendary Defender
1. Visually Superb – 10/10 for Production Value
Now I’m no expert but I thought the animation in this show was really good – so much better than a lot of the other shows I’m watching these days – and compared to shows I watched as a child, it’s hard to believe it came from the same planet. The characters, their expression, the landscapes, are all seamless; I didn’t think you could make a robot lion graceful but there you have it. The voice acting is also on point. (Finn the Human from Adventure Time voices Lance, it took me so long to figure out why he sounded familiar!)
2. Kick-ass Female Space Adventurers
The sentence kind of stands for itself but honestly, I love the female characters in this show – they’re brilliant, independent and usually instrumental in saving the day, showing up almost everyone else in the process.
3. Tangible Character Development
I wanted to make this post spoiler free so I can’t go into details, but for a show that is arguably aimed at a younger audience, the character development seen across this cast is really quite sophisticated. Dealing with issues like grief, prejudice and even a little bit of space-racism, it transcends juvenile entertainment and really establishes an emotional stake for the viewer.
4. That Balance of Witty Banter and Camaraderie
This show is so much funnier than I expected it to be. Most laughs are effortlessly gained and those that aren’t are well-earned. The characters all have great rapport and banter (particularly Lance and Keith, ah, Keith *sigh*) and it was these interactions and relationships, that really sold the show for me. The action was great but a lot of my favourite parts were when the team was just hanging out together.
Whilst also being ethnically diverse, each character has their own distinct personality and traits that, whilst being entirely their own, add something unique to the group dynamic. When I first started watching I had clear favourites but as the show continued I eventually found myself adoring all of them in one way or another.
6. Regress Back to Childhood Pseudo-Nostalgia
This may just be me, but even though I didn’t watch the original animated series of this show, having a little brother, I did watch shows like Power Rangers and Transformers. Watching Voltron brought on many fond (heavily rose-tinted) memories of afternoons watching cartoons with my him – especially each time they formed Voltron. With that same repeated animation sequence and music, every time and I just get flashbacks of being a kid on the edge of my seat thinking, ‘We don’t have time for this! Faster! The bad guys will get you!’ as the suspense drove me crazy. If you did watch the original series, it will be real nostalgia, so win-win!
7. Giant Robot Fights!
Because who doesn’t love a Giant Robot Fight?! This probably falls under #1 too because visually, these fights are awesome but I especially like the growth and teamwork that goes into and comes out of each one.
The problem with a show with an all-powerful giant robot is usually finding interesting, realistic and challenging threats and not have it be like “uh oh, bad guy! Eh we’ll just use our giant robot.”. On this point, the writing team does a great job of creating new, plausible challenges for the Voltron Paladins to face because the tricky part about this all-powerful giant robot is that it’s only as unstoppable as the team flying him and that’s the driving force behind each evolution.
8. Grey Areas Galore
I wanted to finish on this point because I felt it really summed up many of my others in that pretty early on, it becomes clear the “good” and “bad” guys in this show aren’t so black and white. This added depth to the villains is what really drives home the point I made before about Voltron going above what most shows in its genre achieve and transcending children’s entertainment. The character development, personal relationships, blurred lines between enemy and friend – it all adds together to create something really special.
So that was my attempt at persuading you, let me know how I did and if you do watch the show, please, please let me know – email, tweet, dm, carrier pigeon or telegraph – day or night I would really love to hear from you!
A bit of shameless plugging now, but … if you liked what you saw here today you can find me doing my thing any of the following places:
Maybe if I did good this won’t be the last you’ll be hearing from me, but for now, it’s goodbye …
Until next time!