Theory: Keith is actually part Altean
Ok, so this theory is a little bit…out there, but if it were true it would actually explain a lot of things.
I think it’s possible that Keith might actually be part Altean as well as part human and part Galra.
One of the mysteries that came with Keith being revealed as part Galra is the fact that he pretty much looks like a regular human. His unusual violet eyes are the only visual clue that he is partially not of this Earth, but it’s a pretty subtle one. Hence, many people have speculated about Keith having a “Galra form.”
A lot of that is people being furries, but the fact remains that Keith just doesn’t look like an alien, so it’s certainly a possibility.
But one of the only ways that could work is if Keith has the ability to shape-shift. Which aliens do we know of who have that ability?
Way back in Season 1, Allura shocked the paladins by demonstrating the Altean ability to shape-shift, which allows her to disguise herself as a Galra soldier and sneak aboard one of their ships. The fact that Alteans can freaking shape-shift is so wild that it seems highly suspicious it hasn’t come up again. You’d think Coran would do some pretty wacky stuff with that, at least. Plus, it seems unlikely that the writers would add shape-shifting to the mythology just for that one plot point. Thus, the shape-shifting reveal kinda seems like Chekhov’s gun. In other words, it’s a setup for something much more significant to happen later on involving the Altean ability to shape-shift.
This all ties in with another enigma concerning Keith’s origins: his mother. It seems pretty clear that Keith’s alien heritage is from her, given the general air of mystery surrounding her character and the fact that his Marmora sword belonged to her.
In Keith’s vlog, he says that maybe he is naturally untrusting because his mom left him. It’s possible that she left before he was old enough to remember her, but the way he says it kinda makes it seem like he does remember her. She is probably even less human than he is, but she if looked like a giant purple space alien, then it wouldn’t have been much of a shock to him when he found out he has Galra ancestry in Season 2. But even if Keith doesn’t remember her, she was on Earth long enough to meet Keith’s dad and have a kid with him, and giant purple space aliens aren’t exactly inconspicuous on Earth. But this wouldn’t be a problem if she had a way of looking more human.
Allura says that the ability to shape-shift has made Alteans great explorers and diplomats, but it would make them even better spies. The mystery surrounding Keith’s mom gives me hope that she is involved in something that’s super important and badass, and intergalactic espionage could certainly fall into that category.
This brings us to the Galaxy Garrison, an institution that lots of fans think is hella sketch and probably in league with aliens. When Hunk, Lance and Pidge are surveilling the site of Shiro’s crash-landing, Lance zooms in on a certain military officer who has just arrived.
Who the heck is she, indeed. While this moment certainly works to establish Lance’s character, it seems kinda…unnecessary? Unless this character were going to play a more significant role later on…
not saying she’s Keith’s mom, but
There’s definitely something going on with Earth. The Galra were hanging out near Kerberos, so they definitely know that Earth exists. Why haven’t they colonized it? Not only that, but the Blue Lion was on Earth: it must have ended up there sometime after Alfor disbanded Voltron, and considering those mysterious cave drawings, it’s probably been there for a really long time. What’s with all this Ancient Aliens stuff? Why don’t most people on Earth know that aliens exist, given that aliens have known about THEM for thousands of years?
The topic of the Blue Lion brings up another mystery about Keith: How the heck did he manage to sense its presence all the way out in the desert when he didn’t even end up being its paladin?
None of the other paladins have demonstrated that kind of connection to a lion they don’t fly. But someone else has.
In the very same episode, we see Haggar reaching out and sensing the Blue Lion, much like what she helped Zarkon do with the Black Lion in Season 2. But Zarkon has a connection to the Black Lion because he used to be its paladin, while Haggar has never been a paladin. But she is Altean.
One last thing: at SDCC this year, Lauren and Joaquim gave this interview, in which they said that Keith was originally going to have white hair and fangs. That doesn’t sound much like most of the Galra we’ve seen, but it does sound an awful lot like a certain half-Galra prince.
I think it’s pretty clear that Lotor’s mother is Haggar, which makes him half-Altean. The other people with white hair on this show are Allura and her family, alll of whom are Altean, and Shiro, who was experimented on by an Altean. It’s maybe worth noting too that the people in Allura’s family have white hair with a bluish tint, while Haggar’s and Lotor’s hair and Shiro’s floof are stark white and all seem to be related to experiments involving quintessence. Additionally, right after Allura finds out that Haggar is Altean, Haggar strikes her with a bolt of magic and Allura discovers that she has some sort of mysterious magic-bolt powers of her own.
It seems like contact with quintessence magic awakens latent magical abilities, or maybe just magnifies existing ones, since Allura has other magical powers. In the same episode as Allura’s shape-shifting reveal, a druid’s magic leaves purple splotches on Keith’s skin, and then he gets a container full of pure quintessence splashed all over him. Afterwards, he notices that the quintessence got rid of the purple marks.
Maybe what’s keeping him looking human has something to do with quintessence itself.
To recap: Given Keith’s very human appearance, the situation regarding his mother, and his ability to sense the Blue Lion, I think it’s possible that Keith is part Altean, or perhaps his human appearance is due to something involving quintessence.