Voltron TV Poster Image

Voltron

(i)

 

Vintage '80s mega-robot action still OK for kids.

What parents need to know

Positive messages

Violence and force are the only means to an end as good and evil battle each other. Of the legion of good warriors, only one is a woman, and while she's respected among her peers, she's often overly emotional, dissolving into tears for no apparent reason.

Violence & scariness

Cartoon violence includes exploding missiles, aircraft crashes, robotic electrocution, and falls from great heights. No one is explicitly said to be dead; characters usually disintegrate into nothing or lie still in a jumbled heap on the ground.

Sexy stuff
Not applicable
Language
Not applicable
Consumerism

Vintage Voltron merchandise isn't readily available in stores today, but it was big in the '80s.

Drinking, drugs, & smoking
Not applicable

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that this 1980s anime series features plenty of cartoon violence -- including explosions, aircraft crashes, robotic electrocution, and extensive falls -- little of which results in visible/obvious injury and most of which is relatively benign. Characters always resort to using force against their enemies (who want to round up and enslave unsuspecting victims, turning them into a battalion of warriors). There's plenty of mutual respect and cooperation within the Voltron force, and although the lone female character is slightly overemotional at times, she's an integral part of the team's success.

What's the story?

In the ongoing battle between good and evil, the fate of peace in the universe rests with VOLTRON, a giant shape-changing robot manned by the dedicated warriors of the Voltron force. Together they battle King Zarkon's tyrannical attempts to enslave the masses and create a battalion of vicious soldiers. Along with his son, Prince Lotor (voiced by Lennie Weinrib), and a sinister witch named Hagar (B.J. Ward), Zarkon (Jack Angel) sets his sights on bringing all of the galaxy's planets into his villainous fold and simultaneously destroying his nemesis, Voltron. He dispatches minions to far-reaching worlds to round up the peaceful residents, but even his best-laid plans are usually foiled by the dedicated do-gooders of the Voltron force. Working under the oversight of war veteran Coran (Peter Cullen) and answering to an alliance of good planets, the force's five space explorers keep tabs on Zarkon's moves and wage war on his troops.

Is it any good?

QUALITY

The group is a good balance of different types. Levelheaded Keith's (Neil Ross) dedication to the cause is an inspiration to his teammates. Lighthearted Lance (Michael Bell) and impulsive Hunk (Weinrib) often keep their cohorts guessing with their antics -- but at heart, they're as industrious as the others. Meanwhile, sensitive Pidge (Weinrib again) sometimes shows his youth in his tendency to jump into any situation headfirst, and unlikely warrior Allura (Ward) determinedly proves that she can hang in there with her male peers. (In early episodes, a character named Sven, voiced by Bell, was the fifth force member, but an injury forced him out, opening a spot for Allura.)

Traveling the galaxy in robotic lions, the quintet regularly join their vehicles together to form megarobot Voltron, which proceeds to stomp and blast its way to defending the universe from Zarkon's evil clutches. Although the group's intervention usually frees his latest conquest, Zarkon's frustration over being overpowered only increases his determination to win next time around. A fan favorite in its 1980s heyday, Voltron spawned a second series in the 1990s, as well as a line of action toys. But given that the "vintage" merchandise isn't readily available on store shelves today, the series, though dated, might be a welcome choice for adventurous tweens whose parents would prefer to avoid getting caught up in a cloud of commercialism. Just be ready for a fair amount of cartoon violence -- it's pretty tame by today's standards, but it's still prevalent.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about violence in cartoons. Why are so many kids' cartoons action-oriented, with lots of crashes and battles? Is that more fun to watch than quieter shows? Why? Are TV shows and movies more violent now than they used to be? Why do you think that is? Is society as a whole more violent? What dangers exist in public places (like schools, shopping malls, and city parks) and at home? How does the media affect our view of violence and violent offenders?

TV details

Cast:B.J. Ward, Lennie Weinrib, Michael Bell
Networks:Boomerang, Cartoon Network
Genre:Kids' Animation
TV rating:TV-PG
Available on:DVD, Streaming

This review of Voltron was written by

Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are conducted by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.

Quality

Our star rating assesses the media's overall quality.

Find out more

Learning ratings

  • Best: Really engaging; great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging; good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging; good learning approach.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging; OK learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

Find out more

About these links

Common Sense Media, a nonprofit organization, earns a small affiliate fee from Amazon or iTunes when you use our links to make a purchase. Thank you for your support.

Read more

About Our Rating System

The age displayed for each title is the minimum one for which it's developmentally appropriate. We recently updated all of our reviews to show only this age, rather than the multi-color "slider." Get more information about our ratings.

Great handpicked alternatives

What parents and kids say

See all user reviews

Share your thoughts with other parents and kids Write a user review

A safe community is important to us. Please observe our guidelines

Teen, 16 years old Written byibarncat October 1, 2011

Then-overmerchandised '80s mega robot action is still boring for action fans

I tried to watch the first episode of this version this afternoon because I was somewhat impressed with Nicktoons' new American-made version, but I could only watch about six or seven minutes. It was, first of all, too boringly written, and secondly, it was simply jumping into the middle of things. No wonder I believe the '90s are all that, and this is a good proof. Even in Japan, where animations are a lot better as is, the 80s simply couldn't hold. Pretty much the only 80s childrens shows I think exist as far as I've seen that helped to create the wave of creativity that we call the 90s are You Can't Do That On Television, Double Dare, and Dragon Ball. Everything else is simply not worth it. And that is especially the case with TMNT.
Kid, 11 years old April 9, 2008

Bad

I do not like it because it's badly drawn, and it has no meaning.
Adult Written byBlackout211 April 9, 2008

Notin Wrong wit Dis!

There is absolutley nothing wrong for kids around 8 years old and up! As long as they can tell the diff between real and fantasy, there is violence and death that might frighten some children but nothing graphic!!!! You should know your kid though, dont let them watch it if they are easily frightened! but this show is great!

Poll

Did our review help you make an informed decision about this product?

Family Media Agreement