Voltron Legendary Defender Season 4 Release Date: Netflix Brings Lance, Shiro, Keith, Hunk, Pidge Back In 2017

Studio MirNetflix

The Voltron Season 4 release date on Netflix is happening way sooner than many fans would expect. Netflix just aired the seven episodes of the third season, but they have already discussed the release time plans for Voltron Season 4. Besides finding out what happens to Voltron characters Allura, Lance, Shiro, Keith, Hunk, and Pidge (don’t forget Coran Hieronymus Wimbleton Smythe!), perhaps fans should be wondering if it is even right to call the next set of episodes the fourth season at all?

[Update: Exact release date for Voltron Season 4 added to article.]

Netflix likes setting up fans for binge-watching all the episodes in a season, but the way they label a series can often be confusing. When Netflix secures international streaming rights, the problem is that sometimes they break up a single season into multiple parts. That’s what happened recently with Little Witch Academia Season 2. Technically, only one season was released, and the second half was delayed on Netflix, but studio Trigger is really talking about doing another season.

Starting in 2017, it seems like Netflix has made the decision to break up their Netflix Original series into smaller chunks. Castlevania Season 1 was only four episodes even though the script for Castlevania Season 2 (and maybe even Season 3) is already written. If anything, Castlevania writer Warren Ellis believes the show has been split into two parts.

The same thing is happening with Voltron: Legendary Defender Season 3. During the Netflix and DreamWorksTV’s Comic-Con 2017 panel in July, the trailer for the third season premiered Prince Lotor (voiced by AJ LoCascio) but also dropped the bombshell that the third season would be shorter than usual. Some fans were worried since Netflix had originally planned out 78 episodes for the entire series, but this part of the Voltron story is simply being split up.

Voltron Lotor
Zarkon's son, Prince Lotor.Featured image credit: Studio MirNetflix

The currently released seven episodes will be followed up by six episodes in Voltron: Legendary Defender Season 4.

“The idea is to get you more Voltron more often. It’s in smaller doses, but you’ll see it more,” executive producer Lauren Montgomery explained during Comic-Con.

Speaking to EW, Studio Mir director Joaquim Dos Santos explained that the new episode model for Voltron Season 4 came from executive level meetings at Dreamworks.

“I would love to say we were smart enough to come up with that ourselves,” he said. “But we make the show, we don’t think about necessarily the big overarching roll out strategies. That was something that was presented to us from I think meetings that happen on an executive level that are a little above our pay grade.”

Dos Santos said the decision was “presented to us” without their input. At first, the team at Studio Mir was “ready to go to war,” but then they realized that, creatively, the new episode release schedule “makes sense in this instance.” He even contrasted the situation with how Rick And Morty Season 3 took years to release, which no one enjoyed.

The director also discussed how the future seasons have been mapped out in advance for Netflix, which is a huge departure from how TV series are usually handled. In the past, when Dos Santos worked on Avatar: The Last Airbender and Legend Of Korra, he was only guaranteed 26 episodes, but with Voltron: Legendary Defender, the pitch was always to do a “big serialized story.”

“We haven’t had to change course during the course of this series,” he said. “So we’ve been lucky in that way, that they’ve been totally accepting of doing a serialized storyline.”

Voltron Season 4 Release Date Confirmed To Be Soon In 2017

The exact Voltron: Legendary Defender Season 4 release date has been confirmed by Netflix to be on October 13, 2017. Fortunately, the current third season did not end with a big climatic cliffhanger like the end of the last season. Audiences did get to see that Zarkon has recovered from his coma, but, otherwise, the finale was a history lesson on Voltron.

The paladins of Voltron began as five leaders, including Zarkon and Allura’s father, King Alfor. The Voltron lions were created out of a comet ore that possessed the ability to pass between realities in the multiverse. What’s more, a rift in reality allowed creatures to pass through, leading to an emergency for the Galra people. The events culminated in Zarkon and his wife being infected by quintessence, the destruction of the Galran homeworld, and the Voltron lions being dispersed to the ends of the universe.

“It gets serious, we start taking things a little more seriously,” Montgomery said. “There’s still a lot of fun and lightheartedness to the show because we like to have laughs and have the humor to keep things entertaining, but there’s definitely a sense of, ‘Oh, things got ratcheted up a notch,’ that I think makes all of the characters ultimately have to lose a little bit of the child inside of them and start thinking more of on the adult level. Like, ‘Oh, we need to come together as a team and we need to fight back against this.'”

Voltron Paladins
The paladins of Voltron. [Image by Netflix]

The third season was not all doom and gloom, although Dos Santos would prefer to use the word “complex” rather than “dark.” Individual stories, like Pidge’s search for her family, was a large theme, and audiences finally get to see Matt in action.

“Pidge has a drive,” said voice actor Bex Taylor-Klaus. “She has this deep love her family. It’s been fun to play this excitement when she finds a new clue and devastation as it falls apart. She’s got more avenues to explore through this season.”

Tyler Labine, who voices Hunk, also noted how the TV series purposefully added moments of levity to counterbalance the darkness.

“There are episodes that are wacky to counterbalance how intense it gets,” he said.

Montgomery also gave audiences a hint about what to expect from Zarkon and Lotor during Voltron: Legendary Defender Season 4.

“There was one thing that I think you’ll definitely see is that kind of tension between the father and son that always existed in the old show,” she said. “There was always a bit of a rivalry between Lotor and Zarkon and there’s some of that, too. Again, we’ve done our own spin on it. It’s not exactly the same thing that it was in the original, but it’s in there. It’s definitely a relationship that we thought would be unique. I think we mentioned Lotor was exiled. Well, why was he exiled?”

Judging based on history, Voltron Season 4 will probably end on a big cliffhanger that will be resolved in the beginning of Voltron Season 5. There is no word on whether Voltron Season 5 will similarly be split up into six or seven episodes like the current season, but if the Netflix Original keeps to its annual schedule then audiences should expect to watch Voltron: Legendary Defender Season 5 in 2018.

[Featured Image by Netflix]