[Review] Legend of Korra episodes 11 &12 Season Finale – Skeletons in the Closet, Endgame

I started reviewing Legend of Korra with post disliking the first one-hour premiere, and it apparently I’ll have to end reviewing season 1 of Legend of Korra disliking the one-hour finale. Seriously, if you’re trying to find a review that has absolutely nothing bad to mention about this finale, I wish you good luck, because Luffy may very well find his treasure before you find yours.

Before I get into the disliking though, I can’t express my grief over not posting my Amon theories ahead of time, because I so called Amon being a waterbender, but I have no proof to support it. Darn.

We start off with General Iroh kicking some butt, taking out Hiroshi Sato’s new airplanes, which was cool, but Iroh II has no real purpose in this finale other than taking down airplanes.

There’s also the Noatak and Tarrlok backstory, which I actually enjoyed simply for how much it made me care for those assholes. However, the story is introduced too late. A flashback in the finale, really? If only LoK was allowed one more episode, so that episode 11 stands on its own and not as part of a finale, that would have been much, much better, because as it is now, it seems like something the creators spat out too fast to wrap things up. Plus, the story never truly explains how Noatak went from bloodbender to being Amon. He did mention something about equality very quickly, but the connection is weak.

I have very mixed feelings about Amon capturing the four airbenders. The writers needed Amon to do something huge at this rally if they were going to write Mako and Korra in there to confront Amon, and in that perspective I think the capture of the four airbenders was an excellent choice and a real shocking moment of the finale, but what was Lin Beifong’s sacrifice worth if they got captured anyways? I’d rather they wrote this part out, because the general plot of the finale could have worked without it.

Does Korra go avatar state as she’s about to get her bending taken away? No. Does she go avatar state as Mako’s about to get his bending taken away? No, but she airbends. How? I don’t know. The general speculation of Amon’s debending is that he uses bloodbending to block a chi point, which prevents bending. In that case, shouldn’t Korra have gotten all her bending taken away rather than just the three she used up until that point? Even if we ignore that, just because Korra had only airbending left as an option doesn’t mean she should somehow be able to apply it. Remember, Korra has not been able to airbend for this entire season because she’s not spiritual enough, and having her other three bendings taken away from her shouldn’t have changed that. If you didn’t notice how she airbends, she punches a wisp of air towards Amon, which seems much more firebending style than airbending. It just makes no sense, and I feel slightly insulted by the fact that we’re expected to gloss over it.

Amon/Noatak and Tarrlok’s death scene, I’ll admit, was the one wonderfully,though tragically, written part of this finale. (And once again, I’d like to reiterate how this is not a kid’s show) Great job on that, Bryke, making us hate them, then making us like them, then breaking our hearts by killing them.

I don’t even want to talk about the ending. Even in Legend of KORRA, Aang saves the day? I couldn’t even feel touched seeing our little bald boy all grown up and among the ranks of all the other avatars, because the whole time, I was silently begging, “No no no no no don’t just give it to her like that!” The series finale of A:tLA was Deux Ex Machina enough, but again with LoK? I just…can’t.

Now, finally, Makorra. It finished with no development, no substance, and no… wholeness. Did Mako even break up with Asami? As Sokka would say, “You know, it was really unclear.”

Oh, that’s right, I forgot about Asami, another gaping flaw in this finale. This whole time, I thought there must have been some way Asami could contribute to the plot other than adding a love triangle to the series (because let’s admit, even though Asami kicked a lot of butt, the writers could have written around that), but apparently not. The sad face screencap is meaningless, as is pretty much her entire character to the plot, and it makes me wonder, why did the writers even make Asami if all they’re going to do is make her suffer for no reason? I was hoping she’d get with Iroh II or something so she could at least get a happy ending after Mako, her manwhore boyfriend, cheated on her and then broke up with her, but gosh, nothing.

Overall, I was seriously disappointed. In my opinion, this finale wasted so much potential.

[Review] Legend of Korra episode 10 – Turning the Tides

This week’s review is dedicated entirely to Lin Beifong, because I don’t know if I’ll ever recover from the horrible shock of seeing Amon take her bending away.

Lin Beifong, as a character, has gradually shown more and more sides of herself as the season went on. When we met her in episode 2 as she interrogated Korra, she was very cold, strict, and unyielding… basically, that mean substitute teacher that you never want to get. In episode 4, Lin was, well, kind of bitchy to Korra as she tells her how Korra hasn’t done anything to deserve a gala, adding on to Korra’s already long list of troubles. In episode 6, we learn that Lin can have a soft spot in her heart for someone (Aang’s son and Toph’s daughter! Oh, if only they had said something about their kids during the flashback!). She shows some stubbornness with her grudge toward Tenzin and a lot of badassery with her badassery. Save Avatar butt, kick Equalist butt. In episode 7 with the raid on the Sato mansion, Lin is authoritative and all-business again, but then goes back to being the badass we love. How many times am I going to say “badass” in this paragraph? All lot, because you can’t spell Lin Beifong without badass. Look closely, it’s in there. In episode 9 when Lin sneaks into the Equalist headquarters to rescue her metalbending officers, she showed a little of the rule-breaking streak that we remember from Toph, and then some more Wolverine-like badassery.

Now this episode. Wow.

Although she’s certainly admirable as a fighter and a warrior, this episode made me love Lin as a person. Firstly, when Tenzin asks her, his ex-girlfriend, to look after his family, she calls him “old friend” reassuringly to let him know that she’s put their past behind her, which is more than we can say about Pema, who definitely sounded jealous when she saw them together. That to me shows a lot of progress in Lin’s character from the woman who treated Korra coldly because just because she was Tenzin’s responsibility. Then when Lin swore to protect Tenzin’s family because they were the last airbenders, it shows that she has a clear idea of what’s important. Good lady, that Lin Beifong.

And everything after that. Telling Tenzin to keep going no matter what happened to her – basically preparing to lose her life to protect her ex-boyfriend’s family. Tearing up that airship like Toph once did. Losing her bending as a martyr. It was a losing battle going in and she knew it, but Lin went ahead anyways.

To make myself feel worse, I made up a little headcanon that as someone who surely learned earthbending and metalbending from Toph, her bending was maybe one of the last things that reminded Lin of her (almost definitely) late mother. Judging by the tone in Lin’s voice back in episode 1 when she answered “What of it?” to Korra’s realization that she is Toph’s daughter, she and Toph possibly had a lot of arguments as Lin grew up, which is pretty plausible when you think about how stubborn both these two women are. Despite that, I think Lin couldn’t help but feel some connection to her mother whenever she bended, and now that she’s lost that part of her, it’s like she’s lost the last lingering bits of her mother.

I think I’ll go cry again now.

[Review] Legend of Korra ep 9 – Out of the Past

So, so much more than I’d ever hoped for.

We get to know the entire Yakone story, which is such a miracle considering Korra has had the spiritual ability of a stick up until now. It’s nice to know that Toph, though matured, still teased Aang like they were kids, and Sokka was… well, not anywhere near the funny guy we remember from TLA, but not as serious as Aang has gotten either. Oh, and that spinning air ball trick has evolved into a really intense move! I was a little disappointed that Yakone ended up being dealt with exactly the same way as Fire Lord Ozai, which seemed a little repetitive to me, but hey, how else are you going to deal with a bloodbender? Gosh, I remember when waterbending was peaceful compared to earth and firebending. What, are we going to see people being suffocated by airbending next?

“I don’t have any cavities, doctor, I swear!”

But one more thing on Yakone: did anyone notice how this time, when Aang took away someone’s bending, there was none of the glowy-eyes-beams or my-spirit-is-going-to-overcome-your-spirit stuff going on? I mean, that was one of the main reasons why people (including me) thought Amon was a fake who could only do something similar to, but not permanent like spiritbending. Now I’m pretty scared that Amon might be able to do the real thing.

 

 

So much douchbaggery and badassery together in one picture.

Speaking of Amon, let’s put aside his evilness for a second and just marvel at how absolutely badass he was against Tarrlok, which was a face-off that I’d been dying to see. Even when being bloodbended, the douchebag overcame it and kept walking forward! Seriously, who didn’t love Amon right then? (Think along this logic: The enemy of my enemy is my friend.) Well, okay, he still wanted to deal with Korra, which we should give a huge round of applause to for thinking so quick on her feet when she heard they were electrocuting the platinum box. How did a girl who lived in the North Pole her whole life even learn about electricity and conductivity, I wonder? Well, no matter. Our baby girl did good. 🙂

Lin Beifong being a badass as usually, breaking into and out of the Equalists’ underground HQ, doing in maybe two hours what Tarrlok and Chief Saikon couldn’t do with an entire police force for weeks. Also, Asami getting really jealous now of Korra and Mako’s relationship. I’m still a little iffy because of that unhappy, guilty expression she made in episode 5, but that’s starting to make no sense to me as she seems like a definite player for Team Korra now, so… I guess maybe it was something she ate that day?

Till next week!

[Review] Legend of Korra ep 7 – The Aftermath

I apologize for my lateness with this review, but to be honest, I wasn’t even planning on writing it after I saw the episode. It was good, don’t get me wrong, but I just didn’t have particularly strong feelings about anything. It was pretty straightforward, and there’s not much for me to add. Tahno’s a poor mess, Mako was a douche for thinking Korra would actually raid someone’s house out of jealousy, Asami was perfect, Lin Beifong was really boss even though Hiroshi the Evil Corporate Leader Sato’s platinum robots, Tenzin’s air wheel move may just be his signature airbending move (I don’t know which official source said this, but from what I heard from other fans, airbenders need to come up with a signature move to earn their tattoos), Asami was perfect, the pool scene was fun, the race track scene made Asami seem kind of evil but she was perfect, Asami pulled a cool trick on her father so she was perfect, and oh, did I mention that Asami was perfect?

Alright, so there was a lot to talk about, but forget everything, I’m just going to focus on Asami because I’m human and kind of lazy.

If you’ve read my shipping review on the fourth episode, The Voice in the Night, which is the episode where Asami first appears, you’ll know that I really want to hate Asami for being the sinker of my Makorra ship. But alas, the girl is flawless. After watching this episode, I was aware that she was now kickass awesome as well as gorgeous and nice, but I still couldn’t bring myself to like her. Just when I was certain it was selfish personal bias that was clouding my eyes, I revisited my review of the 5th episode, and lo and behold!

Asami looking guilty as SIN after Korra thanks her for the Satos’s sponsorship of the Fire Ferrets

I knew it! I knew I had a good reason, and this is it! Folks, Asami may have surprised us by first being clueless about Hiroshi’s Equalist plans, and then even more so when she electrocuted her own father and took out Amon’s lieutenant like it was a walk in the park (another big blow to anti-Asami Korra fans when you consider how much longer Korra took to battle out the lieutenant on the pro-bending arena rooftop in episode 6), but as long as I have this screenshot, I can convince myself that there is still good reason to doubt this girl’s intentions, though she is starting to look like the final candidate for the Krew’s fourth member. But no matter, there is still something very off about her looking so sad at the mention of her father supporting the Fire Ferrets, and this is before she supposedly “just found out” that it was Hiroshi’s cover. In fact, I’m skeptical about the sponsorship being nothing but a cover, but that’s just a blind theory.

And that’s my contribution to this week’s episode discussion, guys. Don’t trust Asami so much just yet, and I’ll see you back here next week when hopefully my review will be on time.

Oh, and one more thing.

NOT MY CABBAGE CORPS!

[Review] Legend of Korra Episode 6 – And the Winner Is…

This was definitely the most action-filled episode yet. And it was phenomenal.

Seriously, how cool was Lin Beifong? Just… I can’t even explain it. Go watch the episode, then watch it again, and then one more time to really make sure you caught everything. The moves she put out don’t even seem possible sometimes, but do you question the physical possibilities of Beifong badassery? No, you don’t, because Beifong is Beifong and that is all the explanation you need.

Toph would have been so proud. We get to see some more of her again in a few flashbacks that Korra gets when she’s semi-unconscious. Whatever went down between Aang and Yakone is still unclear, but with these flashbacks (and the fact that this episode marks the halfway point of Book One: Air), Korra may be very close to finally contacting Aang, and that’ll definitely give us some answers.

We do learn something interesting: Tenzin and Lin had a thing together. Yup, there you go, fandom, give yourselves a big round of applause, because all of you guys who called out Tenzlin were right! Goodness Bryke, you even messed with the Pemzin ship, and those two are married! Well, it doesn’t seem like we’re likely to know how they grew apart since Tenzin cut us off right there and I can’t imagine Lin talking about her romantic past with anybody, but it’s nice to see a fandom theory being right for once!

What is Tahno without his bending?

Speaking of theories, after last episode, there was some speculation on the possibility that Tahno may be a bloodbender, because hey, if there are enough metalbenders to fill up a police force and enough lightningbenders that they work in factories for little pay, why wouldn’t bloodbending be more common? This theory seems to be wrong, since Tahno demonstrated no such ability anywhere in the pro-bending match, which is a pity because it would have explained how the Wolfbats won their match in Ep. 5 in such record time. Well, even if Tahno had been holding back, I guess we’ll never know because thanks to Amon, Tahno is now a non-bender.

Once again, I must restate my belief that this show is not for kids. Equalists electrocuting people? Amon taking away the Wolfbats’ bending? The horrifying screams in the background as the Fire Ferrets are dragged out of the water and the audience realizes they’re being held hostage? This is the stuff of nightmares, and I really can’t believe that the show’s target demographic is 8 to 12-year-olds.

Still, where one theory dies, another arises, so here’s something for you all to think about while we wait for the next episode: Amon had planned to debend the winners of the pro-bending match, no matter who it was. Additionally, someone had paid off the match referees to ignore all the Wolfbat’s dirty tricks so that the Fire Ferrets would have a hard time winning. Is this a coincidence, or did someone have knowledge of Amon’s plans and tried to protect the Fire Ferrets?

Keep thinking, and I’ll see you guys back here next week!