Because fans should be critical, too

Quick Thoughts on the Finale of “Avatar: the Last Airbender”

The really in-depth discussions will have to be saved for–and written–tomorrow, but for now, some quick impressions:

  • I hate to say it, but I was pretty much bored throughout much of this four-part finale. None of these episodes have very good re-watch value, least of all in and of themselves.
  • It’s quite amazing how the issue of killing Firelord Ozai or not didn’t come up until now (and technically “The Southern Raiders”).
  • Oazi’s plan to burn down the entire Earth Kingdom is actually a pretty lousy idea. I feel like the writers were trying way too hard to make him pure evil.
  • This finale is completely stolen by the following characters: Zuko (naturally), Bumi, Iroh, Aang in his Avatar State, and, most of all, Azula. Everyone else barely makes a reasonable impact.
  • With a few exceptions, the action sequences are pretty lame. The exceptions are Zuko and Azula’s Ag Ni Kai [sp?], and bits and pieces of Aang’s fight with Ozai, especially in Avatar State.
  • All of the scenes involving Azula were the best and most effective in the entire finale. Her defeat and meltdown is, in my opinion, the greatest moment in the entire series. Ever.
  • Zuko and Iroh’s reunion was fantastic. But you knew that.

And finally, and perhaps most importantly of all:

  • Energybending did not ruin the finale. It’s clumsy entry into the plot makes it a Deus ex Machina, yes, but it actually makes sense. (Unlike the Deus ex Machina of that other show.)

Expect a much deeper analysis tomorrow, starting, naturally with Part One.


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