Going into this week’s episode of Legend of Korra, I was nervous. Not for Korra’s storyline (which, by the way, was great), but because I knew, based on the previews, that the character of Asami was slated to show up.
As much as I love having TV shows where there are ensembles that include multiple awesome, kickass ladies, they always make me nervous. Not because I think the writers of Korra can’t handle multiple awesome female characters, because they’ve proven they can in the past, but because because inevitably, one of them will be favored over the other. And when that happens, a whole lot of sexist language will be used back and forth, and the fans of the show in question will make me sad. And Korra fans, when I went through tumblr and twitter after the episode aired, you did not fail to disappoint.
I always say that you can never judge a TV series until the episode after the pilot. Pilots are workshopped and fussed over for ages, and there’s a lot of establishing work that won’t have to be done in later episodes that pilots usually have to cover. If you really want to know what a show’s going to be like, I always advise watching through at least the second or third episode. And so it always makes me nervous when there’s a pilot is as good as Legend of Korra’s was, because what if the rest of the show doesn’t live up to that?
Luckily for all of us, Korra shows no sign of slumping soon. In fact, if anything, it’s gotten better and grown on all the things I loved about the pilot. I am so, so enamored with the new world of Republic City that Korra lives in. Not just because it hits all of my history nerd buttons, but because it’s so rich and clearly well-researched. It feels weird to think of Republic City as “period accurate”, since it’s a fantasy world, but let’s put it this way — obviously, Korra has a crack research team that spent a lot of time learning about the culture of major cities in the early 20th century, because they’ve got everything down to a T, from the factories (and shoutout to that shot of Mako working in the powerplant — as my brother said, “I’m a straight dude, and even I got that he was hot in that”) to street culture, it’s like watching a fantasy version of Newsies.
It’s Monday, and I’m annoyed.
Not because of a Garfield-like hatred of Mondays, or because it’s back to the working week, but because Monday is the day after a new episode of Game of Thrones airs, and that annoys me. I don’t hate the show, and I don’t hate people who are fans of it, for the most part. But there is something, more than any other show that I’ve encountered, that makes a normally non-annoying person ten times more annoying just by virtue of discussing said show. The why of this eluded me for a year before I figured it out — Game of Thrones fans, you all kind of say the same things. A lot. Over and over and over again. And frankly, it’s really super-annoying. To everyone. So you need to sit down, take note, and, for the good of everyone you love, please never say the following things again:
I’ll admit it, when I heard that there was a planned sequel to the much-beloved cult series Avatar: The Last Airbender, I was worried. The original series is, as far as I’m concerned, probably the most perfect animated show that has ever been created. It was beautifully drawn, meticulously thought-out, and written to appeal to a wide range of people. It even got me to like it, and I’m generally (someone who just doesn’t get animated series. (There is literally only one flaw in the original Avatar that I can think of, and that is that Katara and Aang end up together instead of Katara and Zuko, which is a betrayal I still have yet to recover from. Why would you create two characters who are perfect for each other and then not pair them together!? Why?!)
Irrational anger aside, there are a lot of concerns with rebooting a franchise as beloved as Avatar. There needs to be an almost impossible balance between enough new that old fans won’t be bored, but not so new that it’s unrecognizable. It should refer to the old show enough to treat returning fans, but not rely on it so new fans won’t be helplessly lost.
After two weeks of struggling with a drawing that ultimately went nowhere, I decided I needed something quick, simple, and fun to draw. And then… this hit me.
Some may call this narcissism. I call it self-acceptance.
(Find it here on hitRECord.)