Voltron: Legendary Defender has dropped its new season, and you don’t have to be a fan of the series to know about its fallout. The much-hyped release hit Netflix with a controversial bang, and audiences are split over the season’s reception. So, rather than teaming against the Galra, the Voltron fandom is turning its war inward.
Over on sites like Twitter and Tumblr, the reception of Voltron has been mixed. While there are plenty who’re in support of the season, there are others who feel letdown by its promises. While the usual back-and-forth about shipping is present, the most prevalent debate topic has to do with Voltron and its LGBTQ representation.
After all, Voltron’s crew did confirm Shiro’s sexuality at Comic-Con International this summer in San Diego. Lauren Montgomery, co-executive producer, revealed the new season would introduce Shiro’s former significant other, Adam. The news was greeted warmly by millions, but there are fans who say they were baited by the announcement.
For those who have finished you Voltron’s new season, you will likely be able to point out the issue. In its latter-half, season seven reveals that Adam was killed when the Galra Empire invaded Earth, and the unexpected death was compounded by Shiro’s lack of explicit mourning. While some fans have taken heart in the canon LGBTQ representation Shiro brings to Voltron, there are others who feel its lack of explicit presentation make it invalid. Adam’s death also has fans questioning if its a part of a the ‘Bury Your Gays’ trope. However, in a recent interview with Polygon, the showrunner’s push against such an accusation.
“If you look at Adam on the whole in regards to the Earth campaign ... there’s a huge battle that happens,” Joquim Dos Santos explained. “Adam represents the loss that our characters feel with what Earth is going through in battling with the Galra.”
With the new season a few days old now, reception is pouring in from across the globe. As you can see below, the Voltron fandom’s waters are still roiling as audiences decide where they fall with the controversy.
Voltron: Legendary Defender was created in 2016 by Netflix and DreamWorks Animation. The series is the fourth major TV project to bear the Voltron name with co-showrunners Joaquim Dos Santos and Lauren Montgomery overseeing the series. The show is based loosely on the original Japanese series Beast King GoLion and has since spawned multiple seasons as one of Netflix’s top original programs.
The first six seasons of Voltron: Legendary Defender are now streaming on Netflix. The site describes the series as, "Teenagers transported from Earth become pilots for robotic lions to fight in an intergalactic war. The Paladins of Voltron must learn to work as a team to assemble the robot Voltron and use its power to conquer the Galra Empire."
The Past Is... The Past?
I disagree entirely that it was queerbait. They told us it was a PAST relationship for Shiro. The main character. Who is the LGBT+ rep. Adam was a plot device to get Shiro out of the 2D closet, & the EPs never pretended he was more. Fans who built up Adam/Shadam baited themselves— VLD s7 Spoilers || Lex || We saved each other (@Not_The_Alex) August 11, 2018
How To Grieve 101
THE SIX STAGES OF GRIEF: VOLTRON EDITION
1. denial— el ☾ bury your tropes (@lancearchive) August 12, 2018
Shiro, A True LGBT Rep
Voltron's lgtb rep is Shiro.— Cocky ! ? カキ! (@diococky) August 11, 2018
Who is alive.
Shiro who is a great person and leader, beloved and respected and admired by everyone. Shiro who faced illness and peril and death itself and came victor.
The gay man you CANNOT kill.
That's your rep. And he's glorious.
Implicit Rep To Explicit Anger
“You’re my best friend”— Aidan?33•95 (@shiromlm) August 11, 2018
Nice LGBT rep you got there, Voltron?
So explicit that you can literally switch the dub and make it platonic.
Fuck you, you never cared about your LGBT audiences and this is very clear after this season.
Ship Those Ships Out...?
Today really showed: if you were watching Voltron for Voltron, you got everything you wanted. There's no room to critique this season like people are in good faith. It was absolutely incredible. Take your ships somewhere else if this is how they make you act.— ✨ voltron spoilers (@arahir) August 11, 2018
A Heartbreaking Letdown
july 20: me happy crying because we finally got representation in voltron— trend #VoltronLegendaryQueerbait (@carryonklance) August 12, 2018
august 10: me sobbing into my pillow because they queerbaited us and made us watch a gay man die #VoltronLegendaryQueerbait
A Vote For Voltron
voltron has been??? so much fun to watch???? just bcs the two characters you like dont kiss doesnt make it bad????????????????????????????ITS A SHOW ABOUT ROBOTS......— Takeshi@CFXI✨A32a (@foxkunkun) August 10, 2018
Yes, In Front Of My Salad
At this point I'll only forgive voltron (and not 100%) if they:
- Adress Shiro and Adam's relationship, making it clear that they were in a romantic relationship and Shiro is a gay man— ico is fucking mad (@vanillainspace) August 12, 2018
- make bi Lance
- show a fucking lgbt kiss right in front of our big salad eyes