Reactions to the Voltron panel at San Diego Comic Con are peaked! The panel reveal of the first episode of season 3 has all fans on the edge of their seats. I’m not excluded from this group, and I am positively stoked to see the new season! Also discussed were the new Voltron diecast figures and the exclusive chapter books and posters attendees received. Lucky, lucky fans!
The episode streamed is titled “Changing of the Guard”, which is ominous in itself. The episode shows several new plot lines, including a long awaited lead on the whereabouts of Pidge’s brother, Matt Holt. The main issue, however is the fate of Shiro—not only are they grieving his disappearance, but also considering the possibility of finding a new paladin for the Black Lion.
Keith is naturally more upset about this than anyone else, fighting this possibility by saying “No, I will find him! Shiro is the only person who didn’t give up on me—I won’t give up on him.” Angsty as always, but he has a point. They can’t give up on their leader that easily.
The most exciting part of this episode is the appearance of Prince Lotor as valiant gladiator. Though we knew he was going to make an entrance at some point, it’s an adrenaline rush nonetheless. A brutal fight ensues between Lotor and Throk, also a new character. The Blade of Marmora and Lotor’s own warriors are also seen in the episode, which will most likely disrupt the plans Zarkon and the witch Hagar have been setting up. Keith and the rest of the team end the episode. While looking fondly at the Black Lion, Keith admits that it’s time to figure out how to reform Voltron after the loss of Shiro. Say it ain’t so, Keith!
Overall, fans reacted excitedly to the episode. And who can blame them? With the introduction of new characters, there is plenty of material to nerd out about and speculate upon. Keith is confirmed as the new leader of Team Voltron, and is potentially the new paladin for the Black Lion. Lotor is introduced, and his cronies are right beside him. The team will have to figure out how to form Voltron once more if they want to have any chance at defeating Zarkon…speculate away with that tidbit!
The Q&A session was hosted by cast members Bex Taylor-Klaus and Tyler Labine, as well as producers Lauren Montgomery and Joaquim Dos Santos. They revealed that Lotor will be voiced by actor AJ LoCasio– we look forward to hearing that sultry voice again!
One cast member described Lotor being “not a good guy, but he’s going to be different” from Zarkon, the main villain we’ve seen so far. Despite this, producer Joaquim says that he can “understand where Lotor is coming from, but he’s still basically the Roman Empire.” Nice comparison, Joaquim. What does that imply about Lotor’s fate?
Side Note: Bex Taylor Klaus, the voice of Pidge, wants to commission fan art of Lotor as a Roman General. Artists, get those tablet styluses ready!
The panel came to an end with the screening of an SDCC exclusive trailer for season 3! In the trailer, live-streamers described actions shots of all five Lions (despite only having four paladins), and a lot of shots depicting King Alfor and Zarkon. With the Black Lion in action, Keith getting defensive about his leadership techniques, and Allura staring ominously at the Blue Lion, fans are speculating that Voltron has come together with Keith as the Black Paladin and Allura as the Blue Paladin. This would align with the paladin dynamic of the original series, Voltron: Defender of the Universe.
Most importantly, at the end of the trailer, Shiro was seen opening his eyes. After his sudden disappearance and possible death at the end of season 2, this is a miracle! We’ll have to tune in to season 3 to see where he’s ended up!
The official Netflix trailer released after the panel differs from the exclusive trailer below. while we do see a lot of footage of the Lions in action, there’s no mention of Shiro’s fate. The somber tone of the trailer, set by the song the Day Has Come by X-Ray Dog, hits a more exciting note when the trailer ends with the Black Lion powering up. Who will truly be the new pilot of Black? Will Keith’s leadership skills be enough to advance the fight againe Zarkon and Hagar? A thrilling season is ahead of us!
Season 3 of Voltron: Legendary Defender airs on August 4th. That’s just two short weeks away! What’s more, the panel hosts confirmed that season 4 will air sometime in October. Fret not, Voltron followers, our cravings will be met shortly! Until then, check back at The Game of Nerds for updates, and leave your theories in the comments below!