There’s always a fear when it comes to a new season. That fear being that it will either not live up to your expectations, or, in the case of a really good previous season, it won’t be able to top what that season did. These are legitimate concerns, and sometimes we overreact when it comes to how we feel about certain seasons (I mean, look at comic book shows, it’s all over the map). But, as I sit here and write this Voltron Legendary Defender Season 7 Review, after waiting over 24 hours to view it…I can say my thoughts aren’t an overreaction.

If you recall, my review for Season 6 of Voltron Legendary Defender was booming. Despite it only being 7 episodes, I considered it the best season of the show. Which is why I’m all the more heartbroken that I truly feel that Season 7 is the WORST of the series. That’s right, I’m saying that Season 7 is the worst of the series, and I have a lot of reasoning behind this.

So, let’s recap a little. At the end of Season 6, Voltron defeated Lotor and escaped the Quintessence field, but at the cost of the Castle of Lions. The only option they had left was to head for Earth, which was awesome! We finally got to go back to Earth! Except, that Season 7 spends over half the season just to get to Earth, and then what happens there is both thrilling and moronic.

Let’s start off with the first episode. “A Little Adventure” honestly has to be the worst opening of a season ever. Half of the episode is about Shiro “dying” (which you knew wasn’t going to happen) and flashing back to how he met Keith and brought him into the Galactic Garrison. The other half was most of the team trying to find an energy source for the Lions…and getting shrunk…and then trying to get unshrunk…really?

Again, I’m fine with comedy, but the first episode is meant to drive home the point of the season. This could’ve been episode 2 and might have come off better, but instead? We got 50% comedy and 50% flashbacks and little progression.

Voltron Legendary Defender Season 7 Review

Episode 2, “The Road Home” could’ve been so much better, but they spent almost half the episode focusing on how everyone would behave when confined to the Lions. And it was so annoying. Which is sad because once things picked up, it was kind of good. Episode 3 was slightly better, aside from Coran attempting a rescue mission and a scene I’ll get to in a second. We found out a major twist, Voltron has been gone for THREE YEARS, so the universe is literally entirely different. That’s huge. I don’t like that they did this, as they basically (as confirmed in dialogue later on) reset the entire board.

But what really had me rolling my eyes was the return of Acxa. Apparently, she’s back on the good side, and she wants to save the Paladins. Ok, that’s fine. But then, Ezor and Zethrid decide to spend a minute talking about how Acxa likes Keith…IN FRONT OF KEITH!!! It just drones on, so much so that even Keith was like, “Can we just fight?” He literally said that! Why was this even a scene???

Even that though can’t compare to the WORST EPISODE OF VOLTRON LEGENDARY DEFENDER EVER!!!! Episode 4, “The Feud.” Why is this the worst episode ever? Well, is it because the team is on a game show fighting for their lives? No. Is it because they apparently were captured by a magical being who’s basically omnipotent? No. It’s because at the end of the episode, Coran notes, AND I QUOTE, “The legends say that if you meet Bob and live to tell the tale, you’re destined for great things indeed…”

I don’t know if you know this, but Keith, Hunk, Lance, Pidge/Katie and Allura ARE THE PALADINS OF FREAKING VOLTRON!!! WE KNOW THEY’RE DESTINED FOR GREAT THINGS!!!!! I mean, we’ve had six seasons of them doing great things! Saving the universe, saving entire species, killing bad guys, including Zarkon and Lotor (allegedly…) and yet we have to have a convenient interdimensional being tell us they’re destined for greatness? Really? REALLY?!??!!?

The only thing I’ll give this episode is that they pull a 4th wall break and do a really cool group cameo that honestly had me laughing. Everything else? No. Just no.

Voltron Legendary Defender Season 7 Review

Episode 5, “The Ruins” tried to get back on track by revealing some of what had happened in the 3 years they were gone, and I was grateful. Except that they stated that Haggar (who was very prominent in Season 6) “vanished” after the battle with Lotor. Really? You expect us to believe that she’s just “gone”? Yeah…no. And though it did set things up for later with the return of the Blade of Momora, it still didn’t make the 3 year jump feel justified.

Which perfectly brings us to Episode 7 & 8 (yes, I’m skipping 6, you’ll see why in a bit) “The Last Stand.” This two-parter focuses on Sam Holt (Pidge/Katie’s father) as he returned to Earth and briefed everyone on just how large the universe really is. In theory? This should’ve been a great two-parter. Instead? We literally got a recap of the entire series so far, a stereotypical general who was literally there to hold Earth back in the long-term, and the fall of Earth itself. While that last part wasn’t technically too bad, the beginning of this two-parter had a distress signal stating that Earth had fallen, there was only one stronghold left, and they needed Voltron. The two-parter focused on how Earth fell and just how much they needed Voltron. Did we need to episodes for that? I really don’t think we did.

There’s a classic storytelling trope called “show don’t tell.” However, there are times when you show too much and it doesn’t add much to the story. Granted, there were elements that were important, including several new sub-characters who I honestly found enjoyable. But I find it hard to believe that they couldn’t have introduced them in a more concise way via the Paladins arrival and to have two episodes that didn’t feel like pointless buildup. Did we need to know how Sam tricked the Galra into creating a new communications system for him? Not really.

Thankfully, more or less, “Know Your Enemy”, “Heart of A Lion”, “Trial By Fire”, and the two part finale, “Lion’s Pride” delivered the action and suspense that this season deserved. There were some great fights, great character moments, and more. But even then, it came at a cost.

For example, remember that general who held Earth back? She literally sold out Voltron in the hopes of getting the Galra to leave. And when she confessed to the Paladins what she did, her defense was, “Sendak lied to me.” REALLY??!?! A bad guy lied to a person…what are the odds???

At this point, you’re probably saying, “Man, this guys’ Voltron Legendary Defender Season 7 Review is pretty harsh. Can’t he cut them a break?” But that’s the thing, I shouldn’t have to. Again, I LOVED Season 6, and for its flaws, and shorter seasons, 3-5 were good as well. Even the first two seasons, where you’d expect them to fall short a little…didn’t. To me, it’s not even close the quality of 1-6 compared to 7, they’re leagues above.

And it still gets worse, after a few seasons of more refined storytelling, Season 7 had not one, not two, but five different cases of “Deus Ex Voltron”. If you don’t know that reference, that means that “all is lost” until Voltron or someone else emits a power they didn’t know they had. This happened a lot in Seasons 1 & 2, and that was ok because the Paladins were still young and didn’t know all of their Lions capabilities. But in Season 7? While I would happily allow one or two of these instances, they didn’t even try to hide the insanity of some of this.

At one point, the Paladins are trapped in a stasis field, and Allura somehow absorbs it so they can be free. The bad guy asks, “How?” And…we got no answer. Or my personal favorite, the Atlas. This was a ship made by humans with a mix of their technology and Altean. That’s believable given the context shown in “The Last Stand”. It was even powered by the crystal formed when the Castle of Lions got destroyed by the black hole. Again, totally believable given what Caran noted about it. But then, in the final battle of the season, the Atlas is nearly destroyed, Shiro “sees” something…and then…I kid you not…the ship transforms into a MASSIVE robot.

How? Why? Even Shiro said he doesn’t know. And while I would allow the crystal to enhance their capabilities, there is no way that this ship could transform into the robot that was made, it wasn’t designed for that in any way shape or form. And if it could do it, why not the Castle of Red Lions with their vastly more abundant crystals? Exactly.

My other big problem with this season was flow. As noted, it didn’t start off strong, and the journey to Earth took 8 episode when you include “The Last Stand”. And Episode 6? Its whole point was to try and drive the Paladins insane, all for the purpose of a “Deus Ex Voltron” to emerge and they “somehow” have crossed the cosmos and are now back in the Milky Way galaxy. I mean…why? 

Personally, I would have LOVED to see them get to Earth in say…four episodes, I’ll be fair. So that would’ve given then 9 episodes to try and free Earth instead of 5, which at times felt very rushed. Including the death of Sendak and his fleet…only for a “mysterious robot” to appear and challenge them! All for a cliffhanger that you probably saw coming in one form or another.

And the rushed Earth plotline sidelined some great stories. We got to see Hunk at his most vulnerable when he realized his family was still out there in Galra controlled territory. I would’ve loved to see more of that Hunk. Or how about Lance and Pidge/Katie interacting with their families more now that they were reunited? To be honest, there wasn’t a lot of character progression for anyone this season. And some characters like Romelle were completely pointless save for maybe one or two scenes in the entire season.

Not to mention there were some plotholes. Mainly, Axca. After Episode 3, where she is with the team and clearly has no ship of her own, she’s gone, and isn’t seen again until the season finale. How did she get there? Where did she go? It makes no sense.

If you’ve been waiting for the Shiro/Adam talk, I’m not the best person to talk about it, especially since I’m almost to 2000 words on this review. However, my fellow writer Sara wrote a piece on it that I really think you should read. That being said, we do agree on it in this aspect. It should never have been promoted, becuase it doesn’t live up to the hype and promotion it was given. And they aren’t the only gay couple who got the shaft in Season 7, and that’s really sad. Oh, but Lance and Allura are getting closer to being a couple, so at least we have that! …no seriously, I want them to be a couple.

As I try and wrap my head around this season, I can’t help but think of the theme of the season. No, “Let’s get back to Earth!”, but rather, “What happened while we were gone?” And I don’t mean the show per se, I mean the writers. What convinced them to go from the spectacle of Season 06 to this story? Why the board reset? Why the weird season finale? Why the rushed cliffhanger…again? WHY EPISODE 4?!?!!?

I don’t know, and that breaks my heart. I LOVE this show, I really do! I’ve given positive scores of 4 and up for every single season (I’ve only reviewed one on Outerhaven, I used to review it for another site). Every single one! But now? I can’t do that, because though I can’t wait for Voltron Season 8, it’s so that I can forget all the stalling and weird story decisions of Season 7.

Now, if you liked it? Great! I’m really glad you did. But for me? It just wasn’t worth it.

Voltron Legendary Defender Season 7 Review

Summary

It’s hard to think that after six seasons that Voltron Legendary Defender would lay an egg, but that’s basically what they did for Season 7.

  • Voltron Legendary Defender Season 7 is the first season to not live up to the hype in any way.
Overall
2.5

About The Author

Todd Black

A self-proclaimed Nintendo fanboy, born, bred, and Mushroom fed! He’s owned every Nintendo handheld and every console since the SNES. He loved games so much he went and got a video game degree and dreams of writing video game stories

7 Responses

  1. Slim Jim Longfoot

    Can’t take this review seriously after this guy said “The Castle of Red Lions”. The reviewer is so ready to dish hate on a great season he can’t even get names straight.

    Reply
    • Todd Black

      Man, I can’t believe I missed that. I don’t know why I went Zelda there, but I did, and two different editors missed it. Irony! lol.

      And trust me, I didn’t go into this review wanting to “dish hate”, but this season seriously made me feel weird. I LOVED Season 06, and I couldn’t wait for Season 07, and yet? It just wasn’t that good to me.

      Like I said at the end, if you liked it? Great! I’m glad you dug it. I really am. But I’ve watched all the seasons, and reviewed them all, and in my opinion, it was the worst of them.

      I apologize for the error, I have fixed the review to say “Castle Of Lions”.

      Reply
  2. Aaron Young

    My name is Aaron Young and I endorse this review

    I found this season difficult to watch in spite of some really great moments. I do think there were some great moments. While the power-ups were ridiculous, the build up to those power ups are very good. When they are lost in space…
    And there were some good gags
    However,
    GODDAMN were there some convenient power-ups. So much so, that when the two blades popped out during the final fight, I knew I should have been excited, I could feel the 7th grader in me getting all amped, but…I just couldn’t. I might have even rolled my eyes.
    And don’t get me started on Commander Holt. I feel like someone went to Google and typed in “tired military trope. dialog. script.”
    “I don’t want to cause a panic”
    “YOU’RE WILLING TO FACE THE FACTS”
    No, it’s just that, you’ve been *missing* for years and I’m supposed to take your word that ALIENS are coming, and not just take your word, but hold a press conference. And humans, not being prone to panic at all, will all “pitch in” and help us to build space weapons. People aren’t going to be raping and pillaging in the streets, they’ll all be heading on down to the local government facility to send word that “I’m no slouch with a wrench.”
    I don’t often think about suicide, but enduring that, made me briefly want to step into traffic.
    “The horror, the horror”
    I had hoped you’d spend more time on Sendak. Love that guy. Planet conqueror from way back, experienced, knows how to subjugate, knows Voltron is coming, he’s ready. What defeats him? Those spunky Earthlings. Never before had he tried to conquer a planet where the inhabitants put up a force field around a military base. Who would have thought someone would ever try that. Hmmmmmmmmmm, what is a planet conqueror to do?! It obviously must have unlimited power. (He doesn’t know it, but it’s the first force field that’s ever existed on Earth, and goddam are we not good at it!). ARGH!
    And let’s not forget those new characters in the fighters. Man oh man, I thought one of them was going to introduce himself as Roy Fokker and another as Rick Hunter. This handful of planes hold just enough power to keep an invading armada at bay, but not quite enough power, to just destroy the pesky thing which is how tension is kept high. Send them on a mission, and that mission gets done, but…they have limited range and finite fuel. So don’t worry, Voltron will be the one to ultimately save the day, but give us until next season, and we’ll be the fist pumping over the smoking remains of a robeast in a distant galaxy.
    Ok, I have to stop, I feel like I’ve said too much
    Just had to get that out there.
    Oh, and Keith jumping out of the Lion and dealing with Sendak…again, 7th grade me, hootin’ and hollerin’, adult me, biiiiiigggggggg siiigggghhhhh.
    I really have to stop.

    Reply
    • Todd Black
      Todd Black

      I’m honored you think the same way I do. I know I’m somewhat in the minority so it feels good for someone else to feel the same about the season.

      Reply
  3. Esteban

    Well… When someone has to yell (Caps) to emphasize something he doesn’t like, you know it is going to be biased. And, specially, when he is yelling about something almost everyone else likes. Let’s go:
    A) Sixth season was, for me, the most boring one. Lotor loses it way too much, too early, and the “open the portal to a magical plane of unlimited phlebotinum” is way, way used a trope. Nevertheless, I did like it. It is flawlessly executed. And that is all that matters.
    B) You are reviewing a series about a giant magical robot built by space elves, formed by five lions, and piloted by six adolescents (considering the Shiro/Allura factor). Think about it for one second. The very concept is ridiculous. When you have accepted that, you have committed to zaniness. Yet Voltron makes sense, because there is some sense of scale, there is a lot of things brilliantly executed. You know there is going to be overused tropes all along.
    C) 7th season was, for me, my favourite so far. It has a certain depth that the other seasons don’t. The stakes are high. We, for once, have a sense of the sheer scale of the Galra power, not the mooks prone to be defeated. We see why they are a force to be reckoned, and not all depending on the Druid’s power only. Where we have seen faceless, easy imperial mooks, now we see powerful foot soldiers, who easily overpower the earth’s bests, even when heavily upgraded by Altean magitek. We know how we fare against a 10.000 years intergalactic empire. Badly. We know that the Earth defenders are ultimately doomed, because even when we advanced the tech, we just don’t have the power needed. And for the tactics used by Sendak? They are as old as they can get: it is called a siege. They siege the fortress and wait until the defenders starve or make a risky maneuver, instead of storming the defenses in a Zerg rush. Meanwhile, you occupy the land surrounding it, and build siege weapons: the Zaiforge cannons. It was the go-to tactic of medieval warfare.

    Also, we have a sense of the scale of space distances, and the power of the broken castle’s teludav. The ability to cross vasts intergalactic distances via wormhole is a major factor here, so as the power to recharge the lions. And it is greatly resolved.

    This season, for me, grounded the series and uplifted the “mystical” aspects of Voltron and the Alteans, scaling them up. Prior to this, we only have a magical race with convenient periodical power-ups. Plot armor and power included. Here we got grounded power. You have a great Sci-fi series, and you have the belic series.

    And for the Atlas? Why are you even surprised? This is a series of giant robots after all.

    Reply
  4. MYOB

    I was never pleased with Season 7, it just felt like that it was all over the place. So cluttered too. It felt like Vehicle Voltron which I found so boring and confusing during my childhood. Too many new characters and they seemed really dull comparing to the current Paladins. Everyone is back on Earth, yeah so. I’m a Shiro fan but the Atlas….please it just takes away what Voltron is supposed to to be, that is “The Defender Of The Universe. His Captain role just seems so tropey just a typical badass generic character that we all see on other shows and film. He will always be remembered as the Black Paladin because he was more well-rounded as a likable character with both his strengths and vulnerabilities due to his past. Most of all, Season 7 was slow and uninteresting when the Paladins were heading back to earth and being part of some silly game show,etc. Those Garrison generals are annoying including the female Admiral blackmailing Voltron through Sendak and never thought that he would turn his back on her. Season 1 and 2 will always be my favorites because the storyarc was better and times seemed more simple with the Paladins. Plus that was the real Shiro’s (I dislike Kuron) arc too.

    Reply

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