Most millennials and a big part of Generation Z grew up on “Avatar: The Last Airbender” — many of them unfortunately saw the train wreck that was the live-action movie as well. The show had some excellent themes, amazing character development (shout out to Zuko) and even some cute animals. It gave us many memorable moments: Iroh made us cry when he sang “Leaves From the Vine” in memory of his son, Zuko underwent one of the best redemption arcs of all time and one food vendor sought justice time after time for his precious cabbages. The original had many great moments; however, its spinoff, “Legend of Korra,” deserves more attention.
“Legend of Korra” takes place 70 years after the events of “The Last Airbender.” The main character is Korra, who is the successor to the previous avatar, Aang. Korra is 17 years old. She’s at an age where most kids in our reality would be thinking about college, but she is thinking about mastering all four elements and saving the world. That is a big responsibility for someone so young. Then again, Aang was only 12 years old in the original series.
It Has Lovable Characters
Like Appa and Momo from the original series, “Legend of Korra” also has some adorable animal characters, like Naga the polar bear and Pabu the ferret, who are easily marketable. However, the animals were not just created for selling merchandise. They are protective of their owners and play key parts in the characters’ development.
The show is also known for its diverse group of characters, especially the ones who are on Team Avatar. There is Bolin, who is carefree, easygoing and kind of naïve, but he does have a good heart. There is Bolin’s twin brother, Mako, who is the opposite of his brother, but there is more to him than people know.
Tenzin, the son of Aang and Katara, becomes Korra’s air bending teacher. Although he might be too traditional for Korras taste, he has her best interest at heart. Tenzin does worry about making his dad proud, and he feels like he has a lot to take on.
Tenzin’s actions show that he never truly stopped missing his parents and will do everything in his power to keep their memories alive. Tenzin felt so much pressure at one point, he believed that he failed his father.
Its Villains Are Iconic
“Legend of Korra” also has some very iconic villains. It doesn’t have the stereotypical villains you usually see in cartoons. These villains are almost relatable, and they teach young kids lessons about problems that are going on right now.
Amon shows viewers that there are always people who don’t like those who are different and will do anything to change them, turning people against one another instead of living together in peace and harmony. Unalaq demonstrates how sometimes even family can betray you. Zaheer shows how anarchy can be a dangerous thing, and he also shows viewers that not all airbenders are the good guys. Kuvira shows that nice on the outside does not always mean nice on the inside.
It Has Great Female Role Models
One major theme in “Legend of Korra” is feminism. The female characters are not damsels in distress. Lin Beifong is the tough as nails chief of police who seems like she doesn’t care for Korra at first, but later in the series, she will do anything to protect her from danger.
Jinora is Tenzin’s daughter and the most dedicated of his four children. Asami is one of the only nonbenders on the show, but she has other talents that prove to be useful to the team, and she even refused to side with her father when he was on the bad guy’s side.
While Aang was a good character, Korra is a great role model for young girls everywhere. Even when she fell, she got right back up again. In many Nickelodeon shows, the female character is usually the sidekick to the main male character. That’s not always a bad thing, but it is refreshing to see a female character that is not there to play the love interest for the main character.
Korra shows that women can be fighters, that they can go through so much and still come out stronger in the end.
It Continues the “Avatar” Legacy
The show also continues the legacy of previous “Avatar” characters with the new generation. Aang has four grandchildren who all continue their grandfather’s legacy, especially Jinora, who works hard to make the grandfather she never got to meet proud of her.
The characters who were teenagers in the original are now adults in “The Legend of Korra.” But we only see Katara and Zuko in old age, because Aang and Sokka both die in the events between the original series and “Legend of Korra.”
“Legend of Korra” did a fantastic job in addressing modern issues. It tackled PTSD in a way that was appropriate for kids, but also got the message across. For the first time there was an LGBTQ+ character in the franchise, and the show even came in second for best couple in the franchise in a WatchMojo video, with Aang and Katara coming in first place.
There are many instances of war in the series, and it even addresses messed up politicians who say they are making the world a better place, but in reality, they are just making it worse.
With “Avatar: the Last Airbender” coming to Netflix on May 15, “Legend of Korra” should also be released on Netflix. It is a great show for people of all ages. This show will educate people on serious issues, and it is time for people to start watching it.