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Avatar the Legend of Wan: thoughts


This was a great pair of episodes, but it’s made me more apathetic towards our central conflict as a whole. Let’s talk about the good first.

What I liked:

  • The lionturtles were interesting and well set up. And their voices <3 Was that Jim Cummings? Because if that was Jim Cummings I’m gone do a back flip!
  • The spirits were very interesting and fun to watch. I was a little skeptical about the monochrome manta ray things at first, but they were really cool.
  • This special was so metal. SO MANY PEOPLE DIED!
  • Seriously though, a hunter was eaten by grass on-screen! And Wan’s friends died off scene with such a cruel delivery. “All of your human friends are dead!” The doom and gloom had just the right balance.
  • That lemur dude what’s-his-name stole the show for me. And when he was corrupted by Vattu—it actually got me, man. I actually had an “Oh no!” moment. That hasn’t happened to me at all in Book 2 yet.
  • The animation was great. The backgrounds. The body movements. The elemental effects. And don’t even get me started on Wan’s first night in the Spirit Wilds. So good.
  • I liked that Wan stopped looking like a saiyan half way through (what were they thinking?)
  • Does this mean there’s is a forest in the Fire Nation where grass is carnivorous and fruits are bees?

What I thought was okay:

  • Who gives a crap about the rich vs. poor plot at the beginning. It felt like a drawn-out set up for Wan’s forest shenanigans. the only interesting thing about it was one of the Chu brother’s was clearly voice by PJ Byrne, which was trippy to listen to.
  • Kinda sucks that literally the only female character in this entire plot was a glowing kite.
  • Wan as a character was fine. Pretty much Aladdin though. I liked him when he grew-up and when he was fanboying over finding more people. Not so much his younger years or his little catchphrase, “I just did.”
  • If Bryke were paying an homage to Ghibli, they really over indulged. Sprites line up to bath in purifying waters. Human needs to enter for reasons. While crossing bridge, get’s noticed by smell. Carrot Spirit. Radish spirit. Green no-face. And then: long journey ridin’ my dear thing. Not the biggest of deals, but yeah. Still really loved them though, despite practically being knock-offs.
  • Kinda wish this light vs dark trope was never written into the show, but this episode handles it competently enough.

What I didn’t like:

  • Amnesia is stupid. It’s a lazy way to suddenly develop a character. They had this complicated set-up of Unalaq manipulating Korra through her self-esteem to open these portals and they make Korra have this revelation of truth… by simply writing around her established personality…
  • Of all the Fire Nation islands out there, Korra just happens to wash up to one where they just HAPPEN to have this purifying water cavern thing. They just HAPPEN to be sages who know exactly what Korra needs to know. They just HAPPEN to have airbisons for Korra to use. They just HAPPEN to know exactly what to do in this situation. No. No, I’m sorry that’s just too many coincidences for me to swallow.
  • Does Korra have her memory back or what? “My name is Korra.” What does that even mean??? You know you’re the avatar and what that means. Good for you. Do you remember your family? Your friends? Do you remember what the heck is going on? You know you need to close the portals. Do you remember why they were opened? Or that you’re Uncle is evil?
  • Korra hits her lowest point only to have all of the answers handed to her immediately…
  • image

Overall, I really liked these episode. In fact, I kinda loved ‘em! To the point where I’m almost disappointed. It’s not that I’m embarrassed of myself. More that I’m embarrassed for the rest of Book 2…

Filed under legend of korra book 2 b2e7 anti korra analysis yES queue

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antifabrony replied to your post: “aren’t you happy that at least the Avatar spirit itself is female?”:
yeah, i’m miffed that they had to go and make yet another male character to hog screen time. like, seriously?

omg this is why we’re engaged

It’s nice that the Avatar spirit is female, but I can’t say that this changes how I feel about Wan being the very first Avatar. Yes, he grew on me and he is actually one of my favourite characters right now as he had a beautiful story. However, the fact remains—and is, personally, reinforced after this episode—that the Legend of Korra is a male-driven story. It centres on men and their stories and their struggles while the women are props or a detail in the greater scheme of things.

Korra, the main character mind you, has had her story hijacked by Wan, by Mako, by Varrick, by her uncle, by her father. She barely has much room to fit into her own story and it’s maddening.

What’s worse is that I’m buying into it. My brother actually echoed a thought that was at the back of my mind by saying that Korra can just stay away from the show. She adds little to it. And I’d have to agree, as much as such a thing pains me to say.

Filed under antifabrony reply legend of korra book 2 anti bryke anti korra analysis

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That was…good

Great, in fact. For the first time since episode 5 of Book 1, I feel inspired by the Legend of Korra. My brother and I had watched The Beginnings Parts 1 and 2 and we were taken aback by the beautiful animation and the engaging story. Wan developed from a thieving human to a man with great power and responsibility. He suffered from his actions, learned from them, and sought to change himself because of the consequences that he had faced.

In two episodes, what I had been asking for for 18 episodes has finally happened, and only in the span of 2 episodes.

I’m not trying to glorify Wan’s story nor am I trying to sell the idea that the Legend of Korra has changed for the better. If anything, this only makes me feel even more trepidation for episodes to come.

Wan’s episodes were handled far, far better than Korra’s. I have an idea of WHY this would happen when Korra is the main character, but I am loathe to say it now. However, from what I can see, Wan was clearly liked more than 95% of the actual characters of LoK, including Korra.

Filed under b2e7 legend of korra book 2 wan anti korra anti bryke i'm happy and bitter happy that this went so well and bitter for the same fact

4,022 notes



99.999% of the problems with this show have nothing to do with the fact that Korra isn’t Aang. 

The have to do with the fact that 

  • Female characters no longer have agency
  • Female characters no longer interact with each other
  • Female characters (namely Lin and Asami) are being downplayed to shill Mako
  • Big issues (like the whole Equalist movement/Korra’s Spirituality) are dropped as soon as the villain starts twirling his mustache.
  • Romance is the only inter-character interaction we have and the characters don’t develop on their own
  • Korra is a secondary character in her own show and has had her agency stolen by her uncle and father
  • Korra has not developed in nine hours of screen time
  • Characters are being written out of character for no reason/to advance the plot
  • Villains are hamfisted and lack human nuance
  • Romance is clumsy and poorly written
  • The writers have “violent” and “headstrong” mixed up
  • Needless love triangles
  • The plot has no urgency and is all over the place
  • Abusive relationships are being played for laughs
  • Eska has no character outside her incredibly abusive relationship with Bolin
  • Desna has no character at all
  • The only character that acts in character and in accordance with any reasonable motivation is Varrick. Fucking Varrick

Stop trucking out the “It’s not A:TLA!” argument because nobody wants it to be. There are a hundred things wrong with the show that have nothing to do with the fact that there are different characters on screen. 

(via theletdownofkorra)

Filed under legend of korra book 2 analysis anti korra anti bryke feminism bechdel test uhh yeah that's it this show just isn't fun to watch anymore queue

44 notes

Anonymous asked: Actually, I found something interesting. I took a Mythology course, and we read the Odyssey, and I complained that Odysseus has no character development, or whatever he has is essentially lost by the end. My professor told me point blank that character regression is still a valid form of artistic expression. Now, I know that's not intentional with Korra, it's just shitty writing, but I thought I'd throw that out there.

Of course and you raise a brilliant point; the regression of a character is indeed valid. But only if the story calls for it.

Korra’s story does not call for her character to regress; it calls for her development. Korra is the next Avatar and her duty is to retain balance in a world that constantly tips its scales. It is her job to maintain equality (or the public standard’s definition of equality). Korra is supposed to grow out of this hot-headed and brash teenager and fit herself into her role. She is not supposed to regress.

However, that is not to say that she is not ALLOWED to. She very well can. The theme of her story, unfortunately, simply wouldn’t support it. Her story is about hope and “fighting the bad guys”; if she were to regress, it wouldn’t exactly match the spirit of her show.

Korra is allowed to take a few steps back. She is allowed to falter. What is unfortunate is that the narrative does not point out that her blunders are wrong; they portray them as something to be neutral about or, worse, something to be supported. For example, when she held the judge’s head in Naga’s waiting mouth in episode 4, we were supposed to cheer for her. We were supposed to overlook the fact that, had a “villain” done this to a “good guy”, such an action would not be forgiven. What’s worse is that this action was wasted; important questions were not asked. Where is the line that separates the “good guy” and the “bad guy”? Do the ends truly justify the means? Instead, we got a statement and that statement was: “Korra is a good guy, so her blatantly threatening to kill this man twice in one episode is a good thing”.

Basically, what could have been portrayed as “character regression” was seen as…just another plot point. Korra threatened a guy, he spilled the beans on her uncle, and the plot moves on. All the while, Korra’s personality is disappointingly static through all of this.

What I’m trying to get at here is that Korra is a mostly static character in a show that asks for development. Regression of her character, personally, clashes with the nature of Avatar (though I can’t say it isn’t doable; if done well, it would be truly fascinating). Bad writing is what is causing such a demand for her character to change for the better. We want to see a good difference between the Korra of the pilot and the Korra of now. What we don’t want to see is Korra becoming worse and the narrative not even bothering to label her deleterious behaviour as character regression.

Filed under anonymous ask legend of korra anti korra anti bryke writing sorry if this is confusing it's one in the morning and my thoughts are everywhere Anonymous

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Anonymous asked: In your rants about Korra and the creators of the show, I think you are forgetting two things. One, something called "character development". Two, Korra isn't Aang. At all. She is, perhaps, the WORST person to be the Avatar. She's headstrong, stubborn, easily willing to kill for her gain. AND YET. She was still chosen to be the Avatar. Let's just remember all the other Avatar's before Aang. They weren't all the same, you know.


1) I remember this something called “character development”; it’s the creators that seem to have forgotten it

2) There is such a thing as spirits making mistakes and Korra is one of them

Filed under anonymous ask legend of korra anti korra anti bryke Anonymous

72 notes

another rant because this episode warrants it

whatever happened to the “all life is sacred” lesson that the last series taught us? korra threatening the life of a man is not something to celebrate, it is something that should be rectified. it’s not good that she cornered this man and shoved his head into her pet’s MOUTH as a means of extracting information from him. is this what aang would have stood for?

short answer: fuck no. aang would have been all up on this bitch’s grill and called her out for being a shitty person and an even shittier Avatar. what happened to being diplomatic and trying to be “spiritual”? again, the same inconsistency that plagued book 1.

it’s like konietzko and dimartino don’t even know what they’re doing anymore. it’s like they didn’t know iN THE FIRST PLACE but we were tricked into thinking they did

Filed under legend of korra book 2 anti korra anti bryke legit grossed out literally sickened by korra after that scene

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bill rinaldi is looking for a fight

he’s trying to pit his fans against the critics. you can see in his message that, though he attempted to pretend to be diplomatic, he is appealing to the rising tensions in the lok fandom and now several people are acting even MORE hostile towards us than they usually are.

my advice: don’t give into it. don’t reply to it. block people if you have to. block bill rinaldi. we can’t give in to these grade-school mind games.

i’m sick and tired of seeing anger and hate on my dashboard and you should be to. don’t satisfy him with a response; he’s not worth it.

stay sane, fellows. peace be unto you.

Filed under legend of korra anti bill rinaldi anti mako anti korra

47 notes

let me teach you how to dance: writingfail: no one try to fight me on why korra needs her spiritual...



no one try to fight me on why korra needs her spiritual side because i will beat you

as the avatar, it is korra’s duty to communicate with the spirits and bring balance via the aid of the spirits

if korra does not have that spiritual connection, she is not a good avatar….

Thiiiiis is why it’s a better series than everyone is giving it credit for. Characters aren’t one dimensional. Things can’t always be fixed by the avatar alone. Korra has to grow as a character to be a better avatar so she can’t just start out being perfect.

I want to take every person who is working on this show out to dinner and praise them for a job well done. Thank you, Nickelodeon.

whoa whoa that wasn’t my point

this series isn’t very good at all. the characters aren’t developed well and korra, while she shouldn’t start out “perfect”, shouldn’t have started in the first place because she quite literally learned shit from her experiences by the end of book 1

i don’t think you should be using what i post as proof of why lok is good; i feel bad about giving false impressions

Filed under legend of korra anti korra sorry but it has to be said i don't want people thinking i'm a 'good fan' that'll totally ruin my image