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Voltron’s accompanying universe was much more involved and insufferable than I remember

May 17, 2012

For a boy in the 1980s, there was no greater amalgamated transforming robot toy than the original lion-based Voltron. BAD. ASS. Not only was he gigantic with a huge sword, but all the component lion pieces that went into his multi-part assembly were well made. I’m a confirmed Transformers partisan, but the Autobot/Decepticon teams that would join up as larger robots — Devastator, Superion, Blahblablahion — fell apart at the first hint of play. You could barely pick the damn things up without them coming apart at your feet. Not so with Voltron. That big sumbitch was made for action.

Not even the overall crappiness of his lame and mostly forgotten kinsmen, Vehicle Voltron and Gladiator Voltron, which also wormed their way into my childhood toychest, could temper his greatness. But I don’t remember garbage like Haggar the Witch or the Doom Blaster. Wasn’t a big fan of the cartoon, I guess (the Transformers have an eternal trump in that arena). If I had had a greater familiarity with them, then maybe my enthusiasm would be doused a bit.

Anyway, I’ve always thought that the staying power of the Voltron mythos was mostly due to the sturdiness of the lion-based toy, not so much the quality of the series or the snot-nosed kids that piloted the arms, legs, and torso. The dopey sidebars in the above ad only gird that impression.

Dumb side characters or not, Voltron is still better than Robotix. ON THIS WE CAN ALL AGREE.

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