Review: Voltron: From the Ashes #1-5
Activate interlocks, dynatherms connected, infracells-up, mega thrusters are go, Let’s Go Voltron Force! These words resonated through me as a child who grew up in the 1980’s. Even now as an adult Voltron is still one of the coolest things to me and will read and watch anything that has Voltron Lion Force in it. Which brings me to the topic at hand, Dynamite Entertainment joined forces with Cullen Bunn (Deadpool, Captain America, Magneto) and Blacky Shepherd to form Voltron once again with Voltron: From The Ashes, and I for one couldn’t be anymore excited that I got a chance to read these comics.
When I was given this assignment I couldn’t wait to open it up start reading the first five issues of this series. I knew in order for Voltron to be successful with readers who were born in the mid 90’s a new cast of characters where going to have to be introduced or the franchise had to be completely rebooted like Netflix is going to be doing this year, and Cullen Bunn and the folks at dynamite hit the nail on the head in blending both the old with the new.
Voltron: From The Ashes takes place over 200 years after the Voltron defeats the Drule Empire. Haggar the Witch and her cat Coven have been drifting through the galaxy abandoned, asleep and defeated. She has nightmares about that day, but she is unaware of the outcome between her Robeasts and Voltron. The galaxy has been in peace for two hundred years, Voltron’s original pilots Commander Keith, Lance, Pidge, Hunk and Princess Allura are long gone but are still flashed back to throughout the series. And the Monks of Arus are now training a new set of pilots to take over Voltron if and when he is needed again. These new pilots are Jayce, Vega, Kirin, Niki and Rei ( no not the same girl from Star Wars The Force Awakens her name is spelled Rey). Haggar is eventually found adrift by Gr’ Rawr and she quickly begins the process of creating new Rrobeasts for her new warlord. Shortly after, Haggar, Gr’ Rawr and his army along with Haggars Robeast attack a peaceful and unaware Planet Arus and has called upon the new Voltron Pilots. After a lengthy hard fault battle, our fearless Pilots help Voltron defeat the Robeasts and Haggar once again
The plot it’s self was solid, it goes back and forth between the original Pilots and the new Cadets/Pilots. Jayce reminds me a lot of Lance. Lance always seem to go to the beat of his own drum, had a hard time following rules, but when it cam to crunch time he was always there to be a good teammate. Also what is unique to Voltron is not one, but two strong female leads, which is a bit of fresh air and I think this could help Voltron get more females interested in Voltron, just as Star Wars did with Rey and so far it has worked. What’s nice with the new Pilots is the creators didn’t do what a lot of franchises did is they take a new group of people and make them exactly like to predecessors like what Ghostbusters is doing with the new movie with the all female cast, you know who which characters resemble the older cast without even seeing a trailer yet for the movie.
The new villain in this series is weak, Gr’ Rawr is not anywhere near a King Zarkon or Prince Lotor or even Emperor Zeppo of the Drule Empire. His name sounds more like a Klingon, than a fearless warlord of the galaxy. I feel like Cullen Bunn spent more time trying to introduce us to the new Voltron Pilots, than he did trying to build up the new enemies besides Haggar. Haggar needs no build up as she has been with Voltron from the very beginning and we know how she ticks. The series would be much better story wise if they delved more into Voltron’s new found enemy. Overall as big fan of Voltron I am still very satisfied with the direction of the story to this point and I look forward to reading the rest of the comics.
The artwork for this series is amazing, it is reminiscent of the cartoon I grew up loving and I am very greatful for that and I think readers who also loved Voltron growing up will also be grateful too. The cover art done by Alex Milne is iconic and does a great job of depicting Voltron as being bruised and battered but not out. The artwork inside done by Blacky Shepherd is flat out amazing. It pops, its colorful. He does a great job making the Castle of Lions more modern as it should be since years has passed by and things have changed for the better.
Story: Cullen Bunn Art: Blacky Shepherd
Story: 7.5 Art: 10 Overall: 8.5 Recommendation: Read
Dynamite Entertainment provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review