Episode 2 - Red Paladin
Along with being a different sort of villain, Lotor quickly displays that he's also a different sort of Galran. Each of his closest generals are not pure-Galra, but rather "half-breeds" with a mixed heritage of Galran and something else. They're so unlike what we've seen from the Galra Empire so far, and when they attack Puiga, it's immediately evident why allowing other races to fight for you can be so advantageous. Lotor's generals are also all women, which frankly, isn't all that strange for a show that's made a point of giving female characters important and diverse roles, but it's welcomed all the same as it isn't really the norm among action cartoons. They also kick butt, displaying unique abilities that should have fans excited for when they will inevitably square off against the Paladins.
Until then, however, 'Red Paladin' gives us Lotor's slow examination of his enemies as he unleashes an attack against Team Voltron for the sole purpose of sizing them up. It is again unlike anything his father would have attempted, engaging the Paladins in a way that allows him to learn about them before ever putting himself or his generals at risk of defeat. In a way, Lotor is similar to Grand Admiral Thrawn on Star Wars Rebels, an adversary with a dramatically different way of approaching his enemy, livening up a conflict that's now two seasons old.
And Lotor's plan works brilliantly because these aren't the same Paladins his father faced, but a new team that's still learning to work together. How the characters shift into their new roles isn't at all surprising - Keith takes over the Black Lion, Lance the Red, and Allura joins them in the Blue, just like in the original cartoon - but the reasons given reveal how the team's dynamics have evolved. Keith is finally accepting his role as leader, though the adjustment isn't an easy one; Lance, having yearned to pilot the Black Lion himself, puts what's best for the team over his own desires, displaying traits that make him the best choice to be Keith's right hand; and Allura, who so desperately wished she could fight alongside the Paladins (though she's certainly been doing her part piloting the castle) is finally accepted by the Blue Lion.
Plus, the scenes of Pidge and Hunk taking their shot at piloting the Black Lion are pretty hilarious, reaffirming why they pilot the Lions they do, as is Lance's utter confusion when the Blue Lion rejects him and Keith's continued possessiveness towards the Red Lion. So at least not everything is changing.