Dec 24, 2014
Raging Anger against The Legend of Korra
I make no secret that I was a big fan of Avatar: The Last Airbender. Hell, I kept watching it long after my kids abandoned it (they have no taste), eagerly awaiting each new book. While there are some spectacularly bad episodes within the series, for the most part it's an awesome cartoon. Thus I was excited when I first heard about The Legend of Korra.
Now here's the thing, for the most part Korra lives up to her predecessor. It grew into an exciting show with likable characters and some fun plots. I was there with it right up through the end. Now that it's over, though, and I find myself wondering if we'll ever visit the world of benders again in cartoon format (Nickelodean will almost certainly continue things in comic format...and if they don't, they're idiots), I find the Star Trek nerd in me coming to the forefront to whine about minor things that bugged me.
Yes, I am a jerk that way.
Closure from the old crew: I know what some of you will say, this was a new show about new characters. We should be thankful we got a shot of Katara in the opening episode, and for the most part I'd agree. However, that wasn't the only mention we got of the past generation. We got to see the grownup spirit of Aang, met up with Iroh in the spirit world, got some quality time with elderly Zuko and Toph. You know where I'm going with this.
Where the hell is Sokka!? Sure we got a glimpse of him in one episode, and Katara hinted that he had died, but that was it. No mention of him, whether he and Suki got married, whether he eventually hooked up with Toph (we learned who Lin's dad was, but not Suy's) or how he died? Why did the lone non-bender of the original Team Avatar get no love? That dude was epic, yet for all we know one day he drank some more bad cactus juice and then wandered off into the Earth Kingdom, never to be seen again. Lame!
The new team excelled...at getting their asses kicked: Sure, the original Team Avatar didn't always win, but for the most part it was because the odds were stacked heavily against them. The new Team Avatar...sorry, but those folks suck at the one thing they should be good at - fighting other benders. Hell, in a match between them all I might give Asami the edge and all she had was a taser glove.
Let's start off with Bolin and Mako. These two are former world-class professional benders, emphasis on world class. They went all the way to the championship. You'd think these guys would steamroll over most folks who dared bend a drop of water in their direction. Not so. Their fighting strategy seemed to consist of "Throw rocks or fire at our enemies and hope we get lucky?" More often than not, they didn't. Think about it. This is like Michael Jordan teaming up with Lawrence Taylor...and then getting their butts handed to them in high school pickup games across the country.
Korra wasn't much better, obviously having rejected her training to follow in the footsteps of these "masters". Compare this to the original team. All of them: Aang, Katara, Zuko, and Toph were smart fighters - using their environments to their advantage, often with devastating results. Hell, elderly 80+ year old Toph pretty easily pimp-slapped Korra in their training matches. One got the impression that she could have singlehandedly stopped Kuvira in season 4 in between gumming her food and complaining about her back.
I liked Korra's friends, but if they were to ever travel into the past to before the end of the Hundred Year War, they'd get smoked...probably by Sokka alone.
Seriously, that was their plan with Baatar Jr???: Their city was being sacked, their forces destroyed, and people were dying left and right...yet Korra refused to beat the information out of Baatar Jr. Instead relying on some lame strategy to threaten him with never seeing his girlfriend again. Sure it worked, but it was only because Baatar Jr was a wuss. In a show that often has not shied away from the horrors of war, this just seemed out of place. Seriously, what would Korra have done if he'd said "Fine. Have fun with that" - throw her hands up and surrender. "Well, I've done all I can do."
The Ending: Oh relax. I don't mean that ending. I thought that was cool (and I won't spoil it). No, this gripe is for Verizon or Nickelodean - whoever was responsible for the show running a bit long and causing my DVR to crap out a minute before the real ending. There I was, watching them walk toward the spirit portal and then...."Would you like to delete this recording?" What? That was it? It was not until a few days later when I realized I needed to get my butt to Nick.com and watch those last few seconds. Jeez! Some days technology truly stinks.
The Ending part 2: No, I still don't mean that ending. What I mean is that the whole series finale felt more like a mid-season ending. Maybe it was the lack of a full, multi-season arc like the original show, but season 3's plot with Zahir felt a lot bigger. The entirely of season 4 felt kind of like a minor subplot or epilogue to that. Not cool. Last Airbender's finale was epic. One almost felt like they needed to smoke a cigarette when it was all over. Korra...more like "Um, is there gonna be a season 5? No? Well, um, okay I guess."
Oh well, at least I was able to get these off of my chest. Now that I have, maybe I can move on with my life again.
But yeah, it was still an awesome show. :)
ps: Old Zuko should have totally started dating old Katarra...that would have been cool too.