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VOLTRON Recap: “Across the Universe” and Lost in Space

VOLTRON Recap: “Across the Universe” and Lost in Space

Hello, friends, and welcome to the first in a season-long recap for Netflix and DreamWorks Animation’s excellent Voltron: Legendary Defender season two. Please, before we begin, make sure you’ve at least seen season 1 and the first episode of season 2 before reading, lest you get spoilt like so much old milk.

While there probably were plans in the works for a second season of Voltron: Legendary Defender before season one dropped, there was no indication to the fans that the show was assuredly coming back. So when the superlative season 1 finished with a major cliffhanger—with our heroes all being sent through a wormhole that had been tampered with by the evil Lord Zarkon’s mystic Witch Haggar—we were all freaking out at the fate of our favorite paladins and their valiant princess.

What made season 2’s first episode, “Across the Universe,” so awesome is that it essentially picked up immediately where that cliffhanger left off, but didn’t answer most of our questions at all. In fact, we didn’t even get all of the main characters’ plights in this one episode; we needed the second one for that. But we did get most of them.

There were three major plots at work in the premiere, with the funniest being Princess Allura and Coran, who were sent careening into the void without any ability to find and exit point of the wormhole. Each time they reached the end of the tunnel, time reset about four minutes, Allura’s new friends the mice turned into some other species, and Coran got progressively younger. The humor in this series has always been one of its standouts, with moments of silliness punctuated by over-the-top facial expressions paying homage to the original’s anime roots. Add to that Rhys Darby’s fantastic vocal performance as Coran and you get a truly brilliant episode. Always love it when Allura has to hold everyone together, and she did a great job as the only “normal” one in the ship/castle.

Elsewhere, Pidge ended up solo in a part of the galaxy with no planet and just floating junk. Her green lion is more or less incapacitated and she has to keep herself sane. She wasn’t alone for long, though, and was quickly joined by–go figure for this series–more cute alien animals! In this instance, they’re little multicolored balls of fluff with eight legs and big eyes. She channeled C-3PO and did a reenactment of the Voltron story so far, and did a hell of a job making a Coran costume out of spacejunk, but eventually she had to get going, and being the genius she is, she created a beacon out of the debris and patched it in to her lion’s circuits. Through that, she’s able to find a way to breach the wormhole and help her fellow heroes. Which is good. Someone had to save them, and as per usual, it was Pidge.

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And finally, perhaps the most intriguing storyline, Shiro and his black lion and Keith and his red lion ended up on a deserted, rocky planet. Shiro had it the worst at the end of last season, suffering a massive wound at the hand (literally) of Witch Haggar. And let me tell ya: a Galra magic wound does not heal very easily. Shiro ended up on one part of the planet and Keith another; but with Shiro being almost unable to move, it was up to Keith to find his captain, and he needed to do it quickly since Shiro was being pursued by giant reptile monsters. In the episode’s most surprising moment, Keith was able to pilot the discarded Black Lion in order to get to Shiro in time. The Black Lion is traditionally the hardest to pilot and—as we found out at the end of last season—used to be piloted by none other than Lord Zarkon himself. Things do not bode well for Shiro this season, I’m gonna say it here and now.

Eventually, Pidge found Shiro and Keith (as well as Allura and Coran), but there was neither hide nor hair of Voltron’s legs, Hunk in the Yellow Lion and Lance in the Blue Lion. Guess we’ll find them next time. However, the true ending of the episode was aboard the Galra flagship in which Zarkon said he believes there was sabotage that allowed the Voltron crew to escape. He believed it was Commander Prorok, last year’s main secondary antagonist…Bad news for him! Lieutenant Thace—who is the one who ACTUALLY allowed the paladins and castle to escape—gets promoted to Commander.

This was a great first episode that gives the individuals and pairs of five-sevenths of the cast to shine. Like last year, it seems like there’s really no need to show Voltron the robot every episode just because. With only three of the lions even featured here, the show’s continuing to make you wait, and I love it!

Keep it glued to Nerdist for more Voltron: Legendary Defender recaps all weekend long!

Images: Dreamworks/Netflix


Kyle Anderson is the Associate Editor for Nerdist. You can find his film and TV reviews here. Follow him on Twitter!

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