Vehicle Voltron:  An Overview

Webmaster's note:  It's not made clear exactly when the VV story is set in relation to LV, but most fans--myself included--place the story as happening probably immediately after the conclusion of the 1st season of LV.   I would add to that and postulate that LV's 2nd season (now know as The New Adventures of Voltron) and possibly even the "Fleet of Doom" movie take place somewhere concurrent within VV's one-season run.  I've written a chronology that supports this theory.  But for now let's review the story.

We join the Stellar Ship Explorer--the mighty flagship of the Galaxy Alliance--immediately after the forces of evil in the Far Universe were dealt a crushing blow by the legendary Lion Voltron of Planet Arus.  The Explorer serves in the Near Universe, where things are not so rosy.  The Alliance faces two grave crises, overpopulation and an ongoing war with the Drule Empire.  Led by Commander Hawkins and Captain Newley, the Explorer is the Alliance's last, best hope for overcoming both of these dire threats.  The Explorer's primary mission is a peaceful quest throughout the galaxy in search of new, uninhabited worlds to relieve the Alliance's own overcrowding worlds. 

Unfortunately, the Drules also seek new planets in the same area of space.  The war-hungry Drule Empire has long sought new worlds for conquest and annexation.  But now the Empire finds itself in crisis: Ravaged by years of war-related pollution and a transient sun, the Drule homeworld is dying rapidly.  This desperate situation has only made the Drules even more dangerous.  They now pursue worlds with increasingly ruthless abandon, even trying to steal worlds already colonized by the Alliance.  If the Alliance discovers a new planet first, the Drules will often hang back and let their enemy do the work of research and colonization, then strike.  If they can't defeat the Alliance and take the planet outright they usually destroy it, making their enemy's victory a pyrrhic one.  They do this apparently not caring that such actions leave their homeworld with one less hope for salvation and that much closer to destruction.  The Drules refuse to negotiate with their enemies, believing it to be the coward's option.  Emperor Zeppo rules the Drule homeworld and his Supreme Council, headed by Viceroy Throk, carry out the emperor's campaign of conquest.  On the battlefield Throk's orders are executed by Commander Hazar and his many underlings.  The Drule fleet boasts a grand array of robot attack ships, and are backed up by terrifying robeasts--giant, grotesque robot monsters dedicated solely to the destruction of any who would dare oppose them.  Nothing can stand against these robeasts, except one thing... VEHICLE VOLTRON. 

Fashioned after the legendary Lion Voltron, Vehicle Voltron is the product of the Alliance's finest scientific minds.  VV is comprised of 15 space vehicles whose main purpose is exploration.  The vehicles are grouped into 3 teams of 5 apiece, with each team specialized for exploration in the air, sea, or on land.  Each vehicle also has limited firepower for defense.  Each team can also unite into a super-vehicle for added strength:  The Air Team, led by Jeff (who also leads all 15 members of the VF), forms the Stratofighter; the Sea Team, commanded by the alien Crik, forms the Aquafighter; and Cliff's Land Team forms the Turbo Terrain Fighter.  These super-vehicles carry more firepower than their individual component vehicles and can also be useful in exploring particularly rough worlds.  And when the Voltron Force is forced to defend itself and all other options are exhausted, these 15 vehicles can unite into one powerful robot, Voltron.  VV boasts an awesome arsenal of super-weapons:  Solar Combat Spears, Ray-Beam Whip, Electro-Thermo-Blasters, Spinning Laser Blades, and more--including, of course, Blazing Sword.  Not even the Drules' most terrible robeast can prevail against the Blazing Sword of VV.  Needless to say, VV's dual exploratory and defensive capabilities have earned him a key role in the Explorer's peaceful yet hazardous mission of exploration. 

Even with the mighty Voltron, however, the mission bears little fruit.  Uninhabited livable worlds are hard to find and and even harder to defend from the jealously possessive Drules.  Nearly every habitable planet the Explorer encounters meets an explosive end after fighting off the enemy.  Further disrupting the crew's mission is the sudden departure of Captain Newley, who is reassigned elsewhere by the Alliance.  The three VV team leaders--Jeff, Cliff, and Crik--are assigned to rotating shifts as Acting Captains to fill Newley's now-vacant position.  The Explorer and the Voltron Force nonetheless carry on, but with ever-increasing discouragement.  Would they ever find--and preserve--a new world?  Would the Drules ever consider giving up their mad ambitions of galactic conquest and let the Explorer carry out her mission in peace? 

Eventually, some of the Drule commanders, including  Commander Hazar himself, begin having similar thoughts.  Hazar, ever known for his relentlessness in battle, begins to reconsider his ways.  Encouraged by his father Mozak and sister Dorma, he comes to realize that the time for war and conquest is long past.  His people must have a new world no matter what the cost--even if it means seeking help from the Alliance.  Some of his subordinates, such as his close friend Mongo, share this sentiment.  Many more, however, hold fast to the ambitious agenda of Zeppo and the Supreme Council.  Hazar begins attempting to make peaceful contact with the Alliance.  Unfortunately, this effort puts him at odds with the Council.  Viceroy Throk rallies Nerok, Valen, Marshall Keezor and other commanders still loyal to him to sabotage Hazar's efforts at every turn.  His status with the Council diminishing rapidly, his peaceful overtures to the Alliance repeatedly thwarted by his own subordinates, Hazar wonders in anguish:  Would he be able to save his world in time?  Would the Alliance ever trust him enough to negotiate peace after so many betrayals?  Who could blame them if they didn't? 

Meanwhile, on the Drule homeworld, many citizens are also coming to realize the jeopardy that their world is in.  They also realize that their leaders have become too lost in their conquering ways to save them.  An anti-emperor movement, the Underground Rebel Force, begins to emerge.  Supported by  Hazar and Dorma, they plan a coup against Zeppo.  Realizing that they aren't strong enough to overthrow Zeppo's forces by themselves, Hazar finally makes contact with the Alliance and requests their help.  The Alliance lends their assistance in the form of the Explorer, VV, and a powerful escort fleet led by none other than Captain Newley.  The Explorer arrives at the Drule homeworld and the battle for planet Drule is joined:  The Explorer and her robot escort fleet fight Zeppo's robot armada; VV lands on the planet and tears through the many robeasts and other defenses; and the URF, led by Hazar and Dorma, take down Zeppo and the Supreme Council from within.  Hazar and Zeppo confront each other face to face, at which point Zeppo promises to never make war again if Hazar lets him go in peace.  Hazar reluctantly agrees, and allows Zeppo and his remaining subordinates to go into exile.  Unfortunately, Zeppo has no intention of keeping his promise.  The last time we see Zeppo, he's en route to a new world in another dimension.  Throk and other former Council members join Zeppo, ostensibly in "exile".  In truth, Zeppo already has forces settled on the new planet, rebuilding the weapons of war... 

With the Drule civil war ended, Hazar requests assistance from the Alliance one more time:  The planet is now in its death throes and his people must be evacuated immediately, before it explodes.  The Explorer and other Alliance ships manage to save the Drule people just in time.  For the Alliance and the Drules, it's the beginning of a new era as they join forces to find the now-homeless Drules a new world. 
 

This is where the VV story ends.  The only other appearance of VV outside of its one-season, 52-episode run is in the "Fleet of Doom" special.

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Voltron I/Vehicle Team Voltron/Vehicle Voltron, Voltron II, Voltron III/Lion Force Voltron/Lion Voltron, and all associated characters and images are the property of World Events Productions, © 1984 (also © 1997 for Lion Voltron).  Voltron:  The Third Dimension is the property of World Events Productions, Mike Young Productions, and Netter Digital Entertainment, Inc., © 1998.  Kikou Kantai Dairugger XV (tr. Armored Armada Dairugger XV), Light Speed God Algebas, and Hyakujuuou Goraion (tr. Hundred Beast King Golion) are the property of Toei Co., Ltd., ©'s 1982, 1983, and 1981, respectively.  Future Robo Daltanius is the property of Toei Co., Ltd. and Sunrise Productions, © 1979. 

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