Voltron: Legendary Defender

Voltron: Legendary Defender

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Updated Dec 20, 2018 at 05:11PM EST by Matt.

Added Aug 01, 2016 at 11:04PM EDT by Onion Syrup.

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Editor's Note: This entry contains spoilers for Voltron: Legendary Defender; read at your own caution.


Voltron: Legendary Defender is a 2016 American animated series by DreamWorks Animation that airs exclusively online as a Netflix original series. The show is known for being worked on by a crew comprised largely of the staff behind the critically acclaimed Nickelodeon shows Avatar The Last Airbender and The Legend of Korra.


Five earthlings discover that they are destined to pilot mysterious alien vehicles only known as lions. When combined, they form Voltron, the most powerful weapon in the universe. Together with alien Princess Allura and her manservant Coran, they take the fight to Zarkon, the notorious leader of the evil empire encroaching on all of the galaxy bent on taking Voltron for himself.


The Voltron crew is spearheaded by executive producer Joaquim Dos Santos, who is an alumnus of the Avatar series.

Voltron: Legendary Defender (shown below, right) is the 2016 reboot of the old original 80s anime Voltron: Defender of the Universe (shown below, left) and is the next reboot after Voltron Force, which aired on Nicktoons at 2011. All 11 episodes of the first season were released on June 10th, 2016.[1] A second season is in development and is set to be released late 2016.[12]



Voltron: Legendary Defender was critically praised. IGN has given it a score of 89/100[8], Rotten Tomatoes average score for the series is 100%[9] and the show was given 8.4/10[10] from IMDB users. The show is mostly praised for its animation and character chemistry, which are reminiscent of the equally well-received Avatar series.

LGBTQ+ Representation Controversy

In August 2018, the seventh season of the series was released to much criticism from within the show's fanbase. Some accused the series of "queer-baiting," which is when a work makes a concerted effort to promote LGBTQ+ characters in advertising but marginalizes them in the finished product. This accusation surrounded the character Shiro, who Lauren Montgomery, one of the series' co-showrunners, confirmed was a homosexual at San Diego Comic-Con earlier that year. However, when the show was released, many fans complained that Shiro's significant other, a man named Adam, only appeared in two episodes and was quickly killed off.[15][16][17]

In response to the criticism, Joaquim Dos Santos, the show's co-showrunner, apologized for the lack of story elements regarding Adam, claiming that they had not intended on making him a recurring character. He said,[18] "With regards to season 7 itself, if anyone for any reason took away from this season that our intention was to queer bait the VLD fandom, I'd like to personally apologize." The tweet received more than 3,600 retweets and 9,900 likes in five months (shown below).

Joaquim Dos Santos @JDS_247 An open letter to the VLD fandom RE Season 7 to anyone who takes tne time out oT tneir aay to drop me a note but in this instance it's just not possible. Also know that the views in this letter are solely my own. I use the words "we" and "us" a lot. That should not reflect or infer how anyone else who I shared an experience alongside perceived the situation way from ths nans broke ipor socC) of Shiro boing artuy have to tell noter day. t any roto, the ch back ctory of Shiro boing in from o pares story First, I'd like to say that we created this version of Voltron with the intent of being as inclusive as possible within the boundaries given. Are there still boundaries? Well, for this type of action adventure/product driven/traditionallybe who p boys toys" show the answer is unfortunately yes.... Have those boundaries widened since we first started the show? Yes. Is there still a TON of room to grow? 100% YES. If we can wowe ogolnst From our PO desche haing Shiro and Ado spit we k the gord of the "buay ou o take resp for Ur krew people woukd be understond ng thot the VILD n more sceoi sally the LOBTO segnent of ne e'ne proud to say had lar decodes been cccupled by a pretty

The following month, in September 2018, Change.org[19] user Evelin Gomez started a campaign for "Dreamworks: GIVE THE VOLTRON WRITERS THE GREEN LIGHT! Give us LGBT Representation!" They wrote:

"Voltron Season 7 was very disappointing to the LGBT+ fans. We expected GOOD representation and instead, we got Heterosexual ships. Everyone was against the Voltron writers for queerbaiting, when in reality it was Dreamworks who did not give them the green light. This is 2018; children deserve to see themselves represented in shows. Children should be able to feel normal, no matter their sexuality. It's not fair for them to see that only heterosexuals live happily ever after and homosexuals get killed off. Dreamworks literally made a movie where a human and ogre fall in love and a donkey has babies with a dragon. GIVE VLD WRITERS THE GREEN LIGHT!

On December 14th, 2018, the final season of Voltron: Legendary Defender was released on Netflix. The following day, Change.org [14] user Allison Bugenis accused the series of not being true to the showrunners' intent. They wrote:

"Rather than receiving the original vision of the showrunners and cast, we as the faithful audience were given a messy season full of executive meddling. Beloved characters were mischaracterized, fridged, and left in the background to be forgotten. The bond between the cast disappeared[…]We are aware that this was not the original plan that the showrunners had for season 8, and we deserve, as an audience who truly loves the show and characters, to know what their vision and story was without the executive meddling that ruined the final season."

Within one week, the petition had amassed more than 17,000 votes of the campaign's 25,000 vote goal.

Many focused on the issue of LGBTQ representation in the finale, focusing on Shiro's ending in which he is seen with a new, unnamed male significant other. On December 14th, Twitter[20] user @JainaFlyingSolo tweeted, "Ya know, it's not really rep if you just tack on a wedding with a character we've never seen, don't have a name for, and don't have any connection to…*cough*damage control." The tweet received more than 40 retweets and 195 likes (shown below, left).

Twitter[21] user @gosutomhive tweeted, "Hi #VoltronSeason8 is not worth watching. Well unless you like forced heterosexuality, unanswered questions, a character arc completely revolved around romance, and characters pushed aside for a end game that couldn’t lasted." The tweet received more than 15 retweets and 100 likes in one week (shown below, right).

Ya know, it's not really rep if you just tack on a wedding with a character we've never seen, don't have a name for, and don't have any connection to...*cough* damage control "cough" #VoltronSeason8 #voltron #Shiro Hi #VoltronSeason8 is not worth watching. Well unless you like forced heterosexuality, unanswered questions, a character arc completely revolved around romance, and characters pushed aside for a end game that couldn't lasted. #voltronspoilers

Writing for GeekDad,[22] reviewer Sean Z summed up the complaints with the series and animation in general. They said:

"There is an unfortunate dichotomy in animation. Due to networks’ fear of poor reception, studio executives are afraid to include gay content, but are well aware that adding queer characters can be an incredibly valuable marketing tool. Because the medium has almost no gay characters, when an animated LGBTQ protagonist does emerge, teen and adult fans tend to flock to them. When Voltron revealed Shiro was gay, #Shiro became the number one trending topic on Twitter.

"The fact is: the wedding is a PR stunt–one that reduces queer people to marketing collateral and attempts to sell a last-ditch effort as 'groundbreaking.' That is why the scene is so reprehensible: the studio expects to be rewarded for it."

Online Relevance

The show has official Facebook and Twitter accounts with roughly 275k likes[3] and 20k followers[4] respectively. Both accounts showcasing merchandise news and promotional art (seen below). An official site exclusively for the show exists.[7] A subreddit for the show has 1,666 subscribers.[11]



A notable portion of the fans of Legendary Defender are fans of the now concluded Avatar television series, who have migrated when the news that Voltron is worked on by the same crew began to spread.

There are approximately 14,000 search results for Voltron on DeviantArt.[2] Deviations include the original series as well as Legendary Defender. The fans are well represented on Tumblr.[5] Voltron managed to rank as the 3rd most popular television show on the site by August 8, 2016[6], according to the official Fandometrics blog. behind the long-time running first placer Steven Universe, and then The Miraculous Ladybug. As of August 29th, Voltron has ranked as the second TV show with the most activity.[13]

Fan Art

2016 http://shazy.deviantart.com a 16 SPRIn solkorra d ev i antartc om

Screencaps & GIFs


Search Interest

External References

Recent Videos 15 total

Recent Images 189 total

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