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VOLTRON Recap: ‘Shiro’s Escape’ Proves Extra Complex

VOLTRON Recap: ‘Shiro’s Escape’ Proves Extra Complex

The following is a recap of season 2 episode 3 of Voltron: Legendary Defender, “Shiro’s Escape.” If you haven’t watched the episode and don’t want to be spoiled, turn back now until you’ve done so. Otherwise, it’s your own trip, brooooooh!

Since the beginning of Voltron: Legendary Defender, Takashi “Shiro” Shirogane has been the stalwart leader of the paladin and pilot of the Black Lion, but also the most mysterious and troubling. The whole adventure began with Lance, Hunk, and Pidge crossing paths with Keith as both groups attempt to save Shiro (who had been kidnapped by the Galra Empire and subsequently set free somehow). His arm had been removed and replaced with a robotic one, and he carried with him the half-remembered visions of the months he spent as a prisoner and surgical guinea pig. He was left scarred and traumatized, made even moreso at the end of last season when Witch Haggar gave him a nasty wound on his side, which nearly ended him in “Across the Universe.”

And since we didn’t see him at all in “The Depths,” the question remained what would happen to Shiro once back with the Castle Ship crew. As episode three, “Shiro’s Escape,” begins, he’s recovering in the Voltron universe’s equivalent to Star Wars’ Bacta Tank and has a vision of his time as a prisoner. He remembered that a Galra surgeon actually freed him after giving him his robot arm, complete with coordinates. This surgeon’s name was Oolas and Shiro awakened with the intense desire to find this secret friend among enemies.

Many of the revelations from last year also finally saw the light of day throughout the whole crew, as Shiro shared his discovery that the evil Lord Zarkon was once the Black Paladin—which is why he, not Shiro, has the Black Bayard—and that Princess Allura knew this from the beginning. She swore it was just to spare the paladin the dark history of Voltron, but it’s also pretty shady to not tell the pilots, oh, ANYTHING about the war they’re diving into.

Shiro was determined to locate the Galra turncoat who helped him and that eventually look the Castle Ship to a strange part of the galaxy full of ice crystal clusters. Suddenly, out of nowhere, a Galra ninja appeared in the ship and the paladin gave chase, and while the heroes tried their best, this ninja proved too wily for them. He would have gotten away were it not for Shiro showing up. See, naturally, it turned out that the ninja was Oolas, the Galra surgeon who helped free him and give the galaxy a chance.

This is where the story got really interesting. We always assumed that all Galra were fiercely loyal to Lord Zarkon and his universal dominance plan, but—like any totalitarian regime—there are resistance fighters who believe otherwise. Oolas revealed that he is part of a group called the Blade of Marmora, Galra who are sympathetic to Voltron’s defense of the realm. He allows the ship to enter into their secret hideout, a pocket of space-time inside the clusters which cloaks them from all sight. Allura, it should be pointed out, was majorly distrusting of Oolas and of the whole Blade of Marmora.

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Oolas offered answers to other members of the crew than just Shiro; he spoke of the other human prisoners aboard the same ship that Shiro was, which led Pidge to ask if he knew about her family. While Oolas didn’t offhand know, he promised to send files on the Earth prisoners. The emblem of the Blade of Marmora also sparked the interest of Keith who, we found out at the very end of the episode, is the same emblem on the blade he carries with him at all times. WHAT COULD IT MEAN?!?!?!?

Of course, it wasn’t all just happy revelations and acknowledgement of allies; the Galra Empire is still out there. Witch Haggar turned the condemned Commander Sendak (who, reminder, was NOT a traitor but was believed to be) into the first Robotic Beast of the series…or “RoBeast” if you will. (Thanks for the term-coining, Hunk!) Being still connected to the Black Lion, Zarkon was able to determine where the Castle Ship was and sent a RoBeast right to the Blade of Marmora’s location. Naturally, Allura assumed the whole thing was a trap on Oolas’ part to defeat them. She don’t trust anybody!

But this meant that there was finally a threat that needed the combined forces of Voltron. I love a show about a giant robot fighter that doesn’t feel the need to feature the giant robot fighter in every episode. The RoBeast sucked up the space clusters and was able to shoot them back out as concentrated energy, which not even Pidge’s shield could withstand for long. The RoBeast got closer and closer to the Blade of Marmora base and Voltron was having a hell of a time stopping it, until Oolas took off in his ship. Allura thought he was buggering off, but he was actually kamikazeing himself into the RoBeast’s mouth in order to create a space-time pocket inside the monster. It folded in on itself until it was no more.

It was sad that Shiro lost the only person with any knowledge about his time as a prisoner, and any knowledge of anything that might help Pidge or Keith solve their own mysteries, but it was great to learn that the Castle Ship and Voltron crew are not alone in the seemingly endless fight. Having any Galra on their side is a good thing, and this will surely play into the culmination of this season.

Let me know your thoughts on this episode of Voltron in the comments below!

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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