What Makes Avatar The Last Airbender Great: Finding Hope in Our Scars

  • Published on:  2/14/2020
  • I kind of like Avatar The Last Airbender. Here's why.

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    Just a few notes and small corrections based on recent comments:
    I called "The Boy in the Iceberg" the pilot when it wasn't. It was the first episode, not the pilot. They're different concepts. My bad.
    When I mention General How, I meant to say General Fong. How is a completely different character. My bad (though in my defense, they have strikingly similar character designs).
    Air vs. Air, in the context of the show's plot, isn't actually a viable match up. I get that. But I was trying to look at it from a general perspective, not just within the context of the narrative.
    The Fire Nation knowing about the eclipse wasn't technically a twist, so I probably shouldn't have framed it as such. It's easy to forget that it was revealed earlier since it's a tiny detail in the middle of the season 2 finale that isn't brought up ever again (even during the eclipse, no one refers to it). Nonetheless, my bad.
    I've gotten a number of comments basically trying to discredit my recognition of the show's diversity, and I just wanted to note that it was a less than 20 second part of the video that was not in any way trying to say that the reason the characters are great is because they aren't all white males. I recognized it because I thought it was a wonderful thing to see cultures and people that continue to go underrepresented being represented so well in a show from nearly 15 years ago, and I did so in the midst of explaining the actual depths of the character writing. Don't put words in my mouth and act like I was saying something that I clearly wasn't.
    I maybe shouldn't have referred to Sokka as an example of toxic masculinity without going into more detail, so let me explain really quick what I meant by that. What the term means to me is how certain men will get so caught up in their own gender role that they end up doing harm both to themselves as well as the people around them. This can take many forms, but I see it mostly as men who believe their worth depends on their ability to protect and provide for those around them and how failing in that is a sign of weakness and a reason for shame: something that Sokka definitely embodies at the beginning of the series. In fact, I believe most of Sokka's arc is centered around him actually coming to a much healthier understanding of what it means to be a man, a theme that runs so deep through Avatar that I could make an entire video about it if I wanted to. If nothing else, I don't want people to think I don't like Sokka or think he's somehow a lesser character to the rest of the cast. He's a great character in his own right.
    Yes, I like Sherlock and yes, I prefer FMA 2003 to Brotherhood. I like both quite a bit. I don't care that some of you don't. It isn't even what the video's about. Get over it, please.

    Music Used:
    From Avatar The Last Airbender: "Agni Kai" "Scarf Dance" "Azula" "Cave Jivin'" "Final Blow" "Invading the Palace" "Opening Theme" "Owns Battle" "Reconciliation" "The Last Agni Kai" "Whose Destiny" "Yangchen" "YuYen" "Zuko on the Mount"

    From The Legend of Korra: "Service and Sacrifice" "Greatest Change"

    From FullMetal Alchemist: "Pint-Sized Alchemist"