Voltron: Legendary Defender season 7 premieres this Friday on Netflix, and ahead of its release, Screen Rant talks with Voltron executive producers, Joaquim Dos Santos and Lauren Montgomery.
Last month at San Diego Comic-Con, the first episode of Voltron season 7 screened during the show's panel, offering fans a taste of the new direction this season will take. That first episode, 'A Little Adventure', sees Keith and Allura stay by Shiro's side as he recovers from having his consciousness implanted in the body of a clone, while the rest of Team Voltron scout the planet for a suitable power source to fuel up the Lions. It's a quintessential Voltron episode and the perfect start for the new season, delving deeper into Shiro and Keith's bond while sending Coran and the other Paladins on a zany, micro-adventure.
The big news to come from that episode was the revelation that Shiro was romantically involved with a man, Adam, prior to the start of the series. LGBTQ characters are becoming more of a norm in most media, but animation - and especially animation geared towards a family audience - can still be found lacking when it comes to representation. Shiro is a big step in the right direction, so when talking with Dos Santos and Montgomery, we made sure to ask how the response has been to the news:
Screen Rant: Last we spoke was at San Diego Comic-Con, where the first episode of Voltron: Legendary Defender season 7 was screened during the panel. And in that episode, we learn that Shiro is gay. Have you had the chance to see any of the fan reactions?
Joaquim Dos Santos: It’s been overwhelmingly positive and incredibly warm and heartening.
Lauren Montgomery: There’s been some really touching things coming from people who have said that it’s helped them feel better about themselves. They’ve seen other people who have been helped by this news, just feeling better in their situation. So that stuff is really meaningful to us.
SR: I talked with a few people walking out of the panel and there was definitely a lot of emotion over the news, which at least initially, I wouldn’t have really thought would be the case.
JDS: We felt, literally like, when Lauren confirmed it on stage, we felt this wave of energy just whack us right in the face. It was amazing. Positive energy, just really positive energy.
SR: It was such a great panel, too. And it was awesome to get the chance to experience seeing the premiere with an audience and get to hear all their reactions. So now, without spoiling anything, what are you most excited for fans to see in these 13 new episodes?
JDS: We are going to get to see a different dynamic with our team and their interactions on Earth. The story sort of changes focus a bit, and the stakes change.
LM: The stakes are as high as ever, if not higher. There’s a lot at stake, but just seeing how far our heroes have come and how they kind of react to this new situation. It’s just something we’re really excited to share with everyone.
SR: Do you have favorite characters? Or is that like trying to pick a favorite kid and you just love them all the same?
JDS: For me it’s become tougher over time, I have to say. I started out pretty strongly in the Lance camp and I’m really liking the way he’s evolving. But, y’know, you start getting an affinity for all the characters, they’re kind of weirdly your children on some level.
LM: It’s really strange, I’m the same. In the beginning, I was Pidge, Pidge all the way. I love Pidge, but thing is, I love all the characters. I love how far Allura has come, I love how like unbelievably pure Hunk is. And so it’s just all of these things about these characters. I love how much Keith has grown into himself. It’s weird, it is weird. And it becomes harder and harder to pick.
SR: And especially for you, since you’ve been with these characters for now, what? 78 episodes--well, 78 episodes total once it’s all finished. Have you had any ideas that never made it into the show or directions you wanted to go, but just couldn’t?
JDS: The one for me, we have our one-off goof episodes, and y’know, we’ve had the mermaid planet that was sort of Lauren’s big fantasy episode, she loves mermaids. We did the D&D one, which we’re all fans of, but Mitch Iverson was a huge fan of. I really, really wanted to do an intergalactic pro-wrestling show, but we never got around to it. And, also, sort of came to realize it was done so well on Avatar: The Last Airbender years ago, that it’s probably all right to not have retreaded those waters.
Thanks to Joaquim and Lauren for talking with us! Stay tuned for part two of our interview in where we'll chat in more detail (i.e. spoilers!) about all the big surprises in season 7.
Voltron: Legendary Defender season 7 drops this Friday, August 10th on Netflix.