Tag Archives: avatar: the last airbender

Review: The Legend of Korra (Book 1) (2012) My Reviews 10 JAN 2013

I am a huge fan of Michael Dante DiMartino and Bryan Konietzko’s 2005 to 2008 Avatar: The Last Airbender animated series, one of the most engaging, character-driven, and laden with political and human nature commentary shows to come out of the USA for a long while.

Pleasingly, I’m just as thrilled with the big follow-up, 2012’s The Legend of Korra, which continues the story of the four nations and the art of elemental bending, but this time shunting us forward into a new steampunk frontier, complete with a fiesty and hot-headed new Avatar: Korra.

The Legend of Korra tells the story of the current Avatar who mastered three of the four elements back when she was still just a toddler. However, her fierce will and impatience makes it difficult for her to learn air bending, the result of which sees her travelling to Republic City, the capital of the United Republic of Nations, a state that emerged after the end of the war that occurred in Avatar: The Last Airbender.

There under the guidance of Tenzin, the youngest child of Aang and Katara, Korra is hoping to learn the bending of the final element that will lead to her fulfilment of the Avatar role. However, Republic City comes with a lot of distractions, both in terms of boys and pro-bending – neither of which is helping her all that much.

Unfortunately, things aren’t going to remain uncomplicated for very long though. In addition to the triads and the rest of the seedy underbelly of this rapidly modernizing city, comes a very different type of danger – masses of ordinary people led by the masked man Amon, who has the ability to take away benders’ abilities, all in the name of bringing about an equal society for all!

A lot of the charm and naivety from the original Avatar series is lost in this outing, the result of which are two very different shows. The first was definitely aimed towards the younger viewer, but with enough depth to enthrall and entertain the older, whilst the Legend of Korra is most definitely pitched at just a slightly older audience, tackling a wide variety of very relevant socio-political concerns and other more mature themes in the process.

Nevertheless, the show never stops being fun, and is jam-packed with action, humour, drama and plenty of twists!

Of course bending takes a front row seat once again, and the choreography of the fight scenes is simply breathtaking. In fact, the visuals as a whole are just sublime, combining rich and detailed background work with fluid and well-designed character animations.

In the same vein, the show sounds just as good as it looks, with a talented cast of voice actors filling the boots of their respective characters with both ease and skill, competently backed up by a superb soundtrack and musical score.

The first book which consists of twelve episodes tells a fantastic story, which wraps up neatly by the end of the final episode and does a brilliant job of introducing this new world to the viewer and then whetting their appetites, before finally leaving them gasping for more.

Well, well worth tracking down then.

Related Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Legend_of_Korra

Review: Avatar: The Last Airbender (2005) My Reviews 20 DEC 2012

Long ago, human civilization was divided into four nations: the Water Tribes, the Earth Kingdom, the Fire Nation and the Air Nomads. Within these societies existed people with the amazing ability to manipulate the element of their nation through the physical motions of martial arts. This was known as bending.

At any given point in time, only one person in the whole world would be able to bend all four of the elements – the Avatar, a divine spirit of the world, continuously reborn and reincarnated in human form, tasked with keeping the balance between the nations as well as connecting the material world with that of the spiritual realms.

A hundred years ago, the reigning Fire Lord Sozin started a war with the other nations, taking them by surprise and almost immediately subjugating most of the other territories. And during the world’s great time of need, the Avatar simply disappeared.

Now a hundred years later, a brother and sister from the Southern Water Tribes uncover what appears to be the Avatar, a young Air Nomad called Aang – The Last Airbender.

What follows from here is a simply marvellous tale of Katara, Sokka, Aang and his flying bison called Aapa, as they attempt to evade the clutches of the Fire Nation, avoid a hellbent pursuer, attempt to upskill Aang’s bending abilities to include all the other elements, and finally try to end the war that has been plaguing the world for so long.

Packed with action, adventure, drama, humor and a very rich and detailed story that draws one in, entertains and enlightens, Avatar: The Last Airbender is without a doubt one of the best animated television shows to comes out of the States in a very, very long time, pleasing both young and old in the process.

The character development is superb, the visuals are amazing, the action and fight choreography unsurpassed – in fact there is almost nothing that a person can fault in this series. Hauntingly beautiful music, striking character designs, an inventive and fun world to be taken in, and a well-matched voice cast makes for a sublimely polished show that you should most definitely be sitting down and watching with your kids if you have not yet done so.

61 episodes broken up into 3 distinct “books” means that you will grow up with and emotionally attach yourself to each and every one of the characters, making it that much harder to let go once the incredibly satisfying end to this epic series is unleashed before you.

Quite frankly I can’t recommend this series highly enough to anyone with even the slightest of interest in watching animated shows.

Definitely, definitely worth your while to track this one down then! :)

[subvertedgallery link=”file” columns=”4″ orderby=”rand”]

Related Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Avatar:_The_Last_Airbender