““I don’t understand why you’re so afraid of the ocean.” Lance said.
“It can kill me.”
“So can I.”
“You wouldn’t, though. The ocean doesn’t care. We’re just bits of flotsam. It’d bash me against the rocks just as much as it keeps me floating here.”
“It’d do the same to me, though. We’re all just bits of flotsam to it, just like the earth would be a bit of flotsam in the sun, and the sun is nothing but a bit of flotsam in the galaxy- which is nothing but a bit of flotsam in the universe. I’m just as much to the ocean as you are.””
seE,, this is interesting to me because, i think we already have that answer. but i dont think the answer makes him ruthless
as soon as keith gets an opportunity to take out zarkon, he takes it. hes like ?? i can end the empire right here right now? i can just axe this guy and that’ll save the universe? great, done
even when coran tells him like five times No,,,no do nOt do that, that is a Bad plan, he just cuts the comms. like he is ready to kill zarkon right here right now
if he was able to at the time, i seriously think he would’ve killed zarkon without a second thought. he went all out trying to kill him, no questions asked. because the thing about keith is, he’s very much an act now type of person. he thinks on his feet and reacts in the moment. i feel like that leaves very little room at the time for regret, particularly when you 1) dont know the guy personally and 2) you do know that they’re responsible for the torture, enslavement, and murder of countless races across the universe.
also, he uh?? may have killed someone already? remember the druid he threw his sword at, and on contact with the blade they just like??? obliterated?? and all thats left is the sword?
ya, that. keith doesnt seem at all broken up about that. you can argue of course that he wasn’t intending to kill them cause he didnt know blades magically disintegrate druids, but like. pidge also kinda causes haxus to fall (to his death??) and it doesnt phase her. i think with both of those instances the idea is let’s brush past this real quickly and not really stop to think about it cause we cant dwell too much on murder in a kids show,, (hi florona).
but in the case with keith and zarkon, i think his immediate willingness to kill someone for the greater good is very much intentional. zarkon conquered like most of the known universe. he destroyed allura’s home planet. his empire captured and tortured keith’s only friend. keith has plenty of reason to want to even the score. also, its a numbers game–get rid of this one Evil guy, and you save the whole universe. to keith, that’s not even a question.
theres also lubos, who i guarentee keith wouldve had no qualms about killing. i mean, he doesn’t go through with it, but you can clearly see that once keith realizes lubos sold out his people to save his own skin, well–keith definitely wanted to get back at him for it
of course, we do know that keith doesnt try to harm people needlessly though. the garrison covered up the disappearance of his best friend, then captured and sedated him when he got back to earth. keith had a knife at the time, but he still only fights the garrison barehanded and just quickly knocks them out. when he’s on the balmera, he stops attacking head-on when lance reminds him the “planet” is an actual creature that can be harmed. keith doesn’t want to hurt people if he can avoid it, and as much as he likes getting back at the galra, i still think he’d only kill someone out of necessity, not personal gain.
i also think keith is much less fired up to take on the galra now because he’s one of them. this means he’s not only more compassionate and empathetic towards some of them–see thace and ulaz–this also means he’s very much conscious about his own feelings of aggression. like, i think he’s trying extra hard not to lash out or anything because he worries he’s just like them. and keith really, really wants to be a good person. like, the boy is really trying. he honestly genuinely cares about other people and wants to do “the right thing”
for keith, killing zarkon was “the right thing.” it meant sparing the universe from his intergalactic conquest. it meant justice for shiro and freeing pidge’s family and putting an end to the monster that eradicated allura’s home. from keith’s perspective, allowing zarkon to live, allowing zarkon to continue imprisoning and torturing and murdering people when he had the power to act and stop it, now that is ruthless. he was just trying to do the right thing
i dont think anyone thinks pidge is a bad person for pushing haxus. i dont think anyone would say shiro lost his humanity just because he was thrown in a gladiator arena and he’d rather fight back than lay down and die. so i wouldnt say keith is heartless just because he’s willing to make big sacrifices for what he thinks is right.
on a more meta level, i also think its kinda hard to judge cause he’s not really human, so human standards dont really apply. for instance, lance and hunk both tell him its cold to leave allura. but by galra standards, i think thats just being pragmatic. so like, what the galra consider ruthless might be something different. anyway, sorry this got so long but,,, ya i do think keith could kill. i dont think that makes him ruthless though, especially since its a given people are going to die in war and he knows what he signed up for