So I’m going to talk about how Voltron impacted me.
I know I made a twitter to say this, but I’m just going to put this here, too. Would have last night but I was too tired.
For as long as I remember, I’ve always loved fictional heroes. I was the kid who ran around the house with a blanket-cape. I wanted to see myself as some big strong hero, and for a while, female heroes like Wonder Woman and Sailor Moon did that for me. However, I was still missing something. You see, I’m Cuban, and I grew up in a predominantly Cuban community. This has always been a huge part of who I am. However, the only Cubans I’ve ever seen on TV were Ricky from I Love Lucy and Que Pasa USA.
I’ve never really seen a Cuban be a hero. I was always convinced that no one really cared about Cubans. Any Hispanic/Latinx representation given were usually Mexican representation, so I basically internalized the idea that I wasn’t going to see a Cuban be a hero, and even if I was going to see it, no one else would care.
Fast forward to the start of my adult years. I’ve put fanfiction down in order to focus more on my original stuff. I keep starting shit over, but I’m still working on it. I had made the main character of my story “mostly white”. Reason being is due to the internalized idea that no one would look at her if she wasn’t something familiar (white, black, or Mexican).
Late 2016, I was recommended to watch Voltron, and I fell in love with it instantly. I fell in love with the characters, the story, the animation, everything. This was the point I fell into “Voltron Hell”, and everything was cool and neat. In some twist of fate, it was only roughly two weeks after I got into the show when Lance being Cuban was announced. Suddenly, my worldview shifted in a way I never expected it would.
Before I knew it, I spent days, weeks even, crying because Lance was Cuban. It was something I just couldn’t get over. Lance was Cuban, and everyone loves him. Lance was Cuban, and he’s out there saving the universe. Even now writing this out feels so surreal. Even now writing this brings tears to my eyes. Lance is Cuban, and he’s a hero. He’s a hero, and everyone loves him. All this plays in my head like a mantra constantly.
Recently I’ve been looking at my original work. My main character is no longer “mostly white”. She’s Cuban now, and she’s going to be loved.
Volton has inspired me in so many ways than I can really put into words, and I’m just so ridiculously grateful for Lance. I want to thank @thebestlaurenmontgomery and the cast members like @joshkeaton and @bext-k who brought this show to life.
And this is why representation matters