The Paladin's Handbook is a 2017 tie-in book for the Voltron: Legendary Defender franchise published by Simon Spotlight. It provides an overview of the universe presented in the show from seasons 1 and 2 along with short biographies of the main cast.
Learn all about what it takes to be a Paladin of Voltron in this epic guide to the hit Netflix series, Voltron Legendary Defender! Discover all the fun facts about Voltron and the surprising connection Emperor Zarkon has to the Black Lion. Explore the Castleship and its home base on Arus, meet the five Paladins of Voltron, and unearth the truth about the Kerberos Mission. Finally, take a quiz and find out which Lion you would pilot as a defender of the universe!
The guidebook acts as a manual for a potential Paladin, the reader, and features notes written on pages by Team Voltron in different fonts to act as their handwriting. The guidebook covers information about the events and characters featured in Season One and Season Two, with brief information about the Galra Empire revealed in Season Three, including the quest to avenge Daibazaal, Haggar's former status as an Altean scientist, as well as mention of Prince Lotor—Although his page admits no information on him is available at the time of the guidebook's creation.
New information presented includes:
- Character ages and heritage for the human Paladins.
- Altean time measurement relative to Earth time measurement.
- Lance's favorite food.
- Keith's birthday and birth month.
- Shiro and Matthew Holt are graduates of the Galaxy Garrison.
- Haggar's Druids are not Galran.
The end of the guidebook features a quiz for the reader to take in order to determine which of the Voltron Lions the reader would pilot.
- Welcome, Young Paladin!
- Meet the Lions
- Meet the Paladins
- The Team
- The Galra Empire
- The Blade of Marmora
- Explore the Universe
- Learn to Speak Altean
- Important Information for Your Paladin Journey
- Quiz: Which Lion Will You Pilot as a Paladin of Voltron?
- By logic of the guidebook, the listed ages on character pages are ages at the start of season one when Shiro returns to Earth: the book claims that Pidge was 14 when Shiro was first captured along with the Kerberos Mission crew while listing her actual age as 15. This coincides with the passage of a year between Shiro's capture and his return to Earth.
- Series staff Joaquim Dos Santos and Lauren Montgomery have expressed concerns that published merchandise may take information from the show "bible" or "original pitch", but their ideas have changed organically over time, so information may not be accurate, and they did not review the book for errors before publishing.
- Josh Keaton has stated that during production of the show as early as the voice actor auditions, the pitch was "five teenagers", but certain character models ended up looking different than the description, so the writing adapted to the finalized designs. This suggests the book does not take the ages from the original pitch as staff feared and reflects the organic changes they have made, because it publishes Shiro's age as 25 and not a teenager in contrast to the original pitch published on merchandise.
- The ages listed in the guidebook generally match the ranges given by Montgomery and Dos Santos at San Diego Comic-Con 2016. The heritages listed for Lance and Hunk are consistent with statements by their voice actors.
- Staff has officially revoked support that Keith's liking of hippopotami, suggested by the guidebook's quiz, is canon.
- Despite the contents of the book including only the first two seasons of the TV series, Lotor appears on page 49 as a teaser for season 3.
- The book erroneously uses a picture of Rax in place of Shay, whereas Rax's own picture is of another Balmeran.
- The coverage on the bayards was contradicted in season 3. Whereas the book states that a specific bayard was used for different styles of fighting, the TV series show that they adjust to the whichever paladin is using it.
- The symbol for the Black Paladin featured on the cover is different from the symbol used on the official website and social media.