Voltron Defender of The Universe Review : Bring Back Nostalgic Feelings?

This post is about Voltron Lion Force. Voltron Vehicle Force posts is on a separate post I’ve made earlier.

Voltron was a very successful anime in United States in 1980s. Perhaps the most successful robot anime at that time in United States. The original story comes from Hyaku Juou Golion. Many alterations were done from the original story to keep Voltron as “family friendly” as possible. When the characters face death in Golion, somehow they could survive in Voltron, including the evil characters. Earth is also still exists in Voltron while it is already trashed in Golion due to war. Golion has no relation with Dairugger XV but on Voltron, the story of the two Voltron (Lion and Vehicle) related to each other although not directly due to different time and location. When Zarkon’s robeast was defeated on episode 51, it is shown that Commander Hazar from Vehicle Voltron still has his officers completely, showing that late events on Lion Voltron takes place in middle timeline of Vehicle Voltron. Other than the story, the alteration also includes characters name, weapons name, and planets name. Also, Voltron has total number episode of 72 (and it’s not even clear) while Golion stops in 52 episodes.

Story
The story of Voltron is what typical classic super robot anime was. A (piloted) robot fighting evil. Five pilots control five lion robots and together, they can combine into Voltron, Defender of The Universe. A mighty robot, loved by good, feared by evil. Voltron has defeated numerous Robeast from planet doom but the story never really progresses. The enemies keep coming back because Voltron never really destroy the source of the problem in planet Doom.

I feel sorry about how 72 episodes of Voltron ended. It’s not even clear. Zarkon, Lotor, and Haggar are still alive. There is no continuation about how they would be defeated. The TV series was aired in 1984, two years later in 1986, there is a special episode dubbed Fleet of Doom. In this episode, Prince Lotor joined force with Viceroy Throk. Two Voltrons also combined their power the defeat the two but they still managed to escape. A 3D animation dubbed Voltron The Third Dimention was aired in the year of 1998 to 2000. Once again, the ending still left us with Zarkon, Lotor, and Haggar alive.

Animation
The animation is what you can expect from 1980s anime. It’s weak for today’s standard. The last 20 episodes from Voltron also recycles too many animation from earlier episodes. I can’t help but to notice the fatal flaws like characters costumes suddenly changes or blue sky suddenly turns into black sky. There are quite a lot of them unfortunately. Perhaps due to time constrains and the lack of resource to make new animations.

Music
Many Voltron fans remember the theme songs. Even the same theme song still used in Voltron The Third Dimension when the lion combine to become Voltron. Not bad but certainly Voltron lacks of variation for its music.

Characters
Compared Vehicle Voltron which has fifteen pilots, Lion Voltron feels more in focus with only five pilots. The five pilots who also serves as main protagonists are Keith, Lance, Pidge, Princess Allura, and Hunk. They are assisted by Coran, the guardian of Princess Allura. They protect planet Arus and the other planets around them from the evil king Zarkon. Originally, before Princess Allura becomes a pilot, Sven was the one in charge. However, Sven was fatally wounded have to moved to another planet to threat his wound. In Golion however, he is died.

The antagonists are King Zarkon, Prince Lotor, and Haggar the witch. They are from planet Doom. King Zarkon often captured other planet and forced the people on the planet to work as slaves. He commands an army of robots. Haggar mainly assisted King Zarkon with her cunning plan and (not so) deadly Robeast which can only be beaten by Voltron.

Voltron_Screenshot_03

Final Thoughts
A typical classic super robot animation film. The story rotate in the same circle for (too) many episodes. Kids can enjoy this film just fine. I enjoyed this series too when I was a kid. However, now that I already grew up, my logic is also changed. This kind series doesn’t really capture my attention, especially with so many illogical things on it. So, let’s just keep this anime as an honorable mentioned.

Story 5
Animation 3
Sounds & Musics 6
Characters 7
Voice Acting 7
Overall 5
Rated as Weak

Pros
(+) Unless you used to watch this anime and bring back the nostalgic feelings, there is nothing to see here

Cons
(-) Never ending story just like a devil’s circle
(-) Weak animation, even worse with too many animation recycle
(-) Lack of music variation

Voltron_Screenshot_06

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