Because fans should be critical, too

Quick Thoughts on “Rememberance”

No amount of justification can excuse this episode for being what it is: the single worst, most useless, and most unfunny episode of The Legend of Korra.

Being a clip show episode certainly doesn’t help, but it’s incredible how lazy it is. Anyone could have made this episode. Anyone. All they’d need is a half-decent video editing program, a half-assed imagination, and the YMWV section of TV Tropes.com. This is barely even passable as your average Internet video humor (making Korra‘s banishment to the  Internet seem that much more prophetic).

I don’t know who DiMartino and Konietzko think they’re fooling if they believe this is acceptable even on the grounds of basic entertainment. And don’t get me started on their attempted self-critique of their poor story decisions!

What did you all think of this episodic placeholder?

EDIT: I’ve re-watched the episode with Konietzko’s tumblr post in mind. Personally, I still think the episode is horrible in the context of the series, but given the circumstances, it’s unfair to take it as a real episode. As such, a full review won’t be about the episode per se, but rather about speculations on why it came to this in the first place. The production history of Korra is steadily becoming more interesting than the actual show.

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21 responses

  1. Charlie

    You should probably check bryan konietzko’s tumblr, and then feel sad and guilty.

    November 21, 2014 at 4:14 pm

    • I wrote my thoughts with Konietzko’s tumblr post in mind, fully aware of the situation. It’s still a horrible episode.

      November 21, 2014 at 4:27 pm

      • anonym2008

        Then you deserved to watch it.
        I thought most of the episode was entertaining and made more sense than ATlA’s last season recap episode.

        November 21, 2014 at 5:01 pm

  2. Chalk this one up to executive meddling. Still, if I had to choose between a worthless episode and laid-off animators, I’d pick the episode.

    November 21, 2014 at 4:50 pm

    • Brian

      Agreed.

      November 21, 2014 at 5:51 pm

  3. Brian

    This is the last book. I repeat, this is the last book. This is supposed to impact our impressions and thoughts on The Legend Of Korra as a whole. Bryke honestly lack the time for such nonsense like this episode, and it’s quite shameful that they felt the need to waste 22 minutes of what could’ve been good build up for the later episodes on this.

    November 21, 2014 at 5:04 pm

  4. ChaosJumper

    While this was just a Clips episode, it weirdly enough reminds me of a Lazy man’s version of that Ed Edd n’ Eddy episode when the Ed’s were stuck on Johnny’s wall [Once Upon an Ed, if you want a reference] especially with the last 3rd making me say out loud “Verric, you’re story’s gettin’ weird”. Three interpretations; one lighthearted, one more down-to-earth and one that makes no sense what-so-ever. Of course, they both have VERY different intentions, but both episodes were attempting to be humorous with storytelling of past events. One was a humorous episode and another one was basically 20+ minutes of a youtube Abridged Series with the original voice actors and a few new clips. Terrible connections? Yes sir, thank you for pointing out the obvious!

    Granted, and it could still just be me wanting more of Bolin and Verric, but I enjoyed the last 3rd for what it’s worth. Was it a bad episode as a whole? Of course, but I didn’t hate it because it had a humorous last 3rd. Doesn’t make it all worth it [hell, that could have just been a clip for an episode that continues the story, would have made it better] but it’s better than just replaying clips without change.

    November 21, 2014 at 5:12 pm

  5. JMR

    I dunno man.

    On the one hand, the fact that there are mitigating circumstances around this episode don’t make the episode itself any less awful.

    On the other hand, just like anything else animation doesn’t happen in a vacuum and so I don’t think we can entirely dismiss those mitigating circumstances when considering the quality of the episode.

    So I’m a bit torn. This is a poor episode by any objective measure not just because its a clip show but also for the transparent attempts by Bryke to justify poor storytelling decisions made in the past (stop reminding me how badly the Equalist plot was resolved, dammit). However, would I rather be subjected to this than them have to give the boot to staff in the name of cutting costs? Probably.

    It’s a question of preference I guess. Would you rather have the entire season suffer slightly from missing animators, writers, etc, or would you rather they get all the suck concentrated in one episode and get it over with? Neither is a good option, but I’d say they chose right.

    November 21, 2014 at 5:18 pm

    • isaklevi1

      “Would you rather have the entire season suffer slightly from missing animators, writers, etc,”

      It would have suffered way more than slightly.

      November 21, 2014 at 5:28 pm

      • JMR

        Maybe. If the budget cut was small enough to only need to sacrifice one episode to appease its wrath, I doubt the sackings would have been too severe if they had gone that route.

        November 21, 2014 at 8:18 pm

  6. Man lol the reactions to this episode is something else.

    November 21, 2014 at 5:52 pm

  7. Ian

    I loved the last act, it was so on point! It was probably the hardest Ive laughed at Korra in a while! Otherwise, given the circumstances, I can forgive this. I think your reaction is pretty harsh Marshall, so I would seriously like for you to give a full opinion on this episode in what you thought they should have done. Because from where I am, this was the best they could do. they addressed Mako, they Addressed Korra, they addressed some plot mistakes and failures, and they gave Bolin and Varrick an insanely funny section, (that villain montage was great!) (ZOMBIE AMON!)

    November 21, 2014 at 6:58 pm

    • I’ll give it another viewing and a full review taking into consideration the full situation. I was too quick on the draw on this one.

      November 21, 2014 at 11:57 pm

  8. tox

    It wasn’t really that bad. I mean it wasn’t good by any measure but it’s not so bad as to be an indictment on the writers.

    I’m in the camp with most of the commenters here. Stupid episode (it’s not even fair to compare it to ‘Ember Island Players’ which got its own animation) but something that at least I can totally ignore on future watches. Basically the show’s ‘The Great Divide.’ Although some of the self-aware bits were pretty terrible (e.g. Unalaq)

    In the interest of fairness, we can agree the “I’m glad I caught you at home” gag from Amon was hilarious.

    November 21, 2014 at 7:53 pm

    • tox

      Uh it was Zaheer, but the point still stands.

      November 22, 2014 at 2:31 am

  9. PsychoPass

    Excuse my harsh language, but that was an insult to the fans. It was mindless, stupid, useless, annoying, and I feel embarrassed to have sat through it. Rememberances is no doubt the worst episode of Korra and of the Avatar franchise: It was more pointless than the Ember Island Players, it felt like the end of the Great Divide but throughout its entirety. I don’t think I’m alone when I say that I do not feel the emotional connection to Korra, Mako, and Asami that the heavy handed exposition told us how we felt.

    November 22, 2014 at 11:01 am

    • Grindal

      You are aware of the Tumblr post from Bryan right?

      Regardless, it is probably one of the worst episodes of Korra although the first half of Book 2 can always rival that. And the some of the papering over the cracks of previous storylines were poorly conceived. The mistakes have been made, so just move on, an attitude that really helped Book 3.

      But considering the Tumblr post I really am fine with it and everyone will skip it during a rewatch so why bother getting so up in arms about it? Do we have a right to feel so entitled to a good episode of Korra each week that a throwaway one which saves some animators and staff their jobs allows for people to claim that this was ‘an insult to fans’ on Bryke’s account?

      To reiterate, it was painful for me to watch this. Never had 22 mins felt longer. But c’est la vie! Tune in next week for the continuation of Chapter 7.

      November 22, 2014 at 3:58 pm

      • PsychoPass

        I became aware of the tumblr post after I wrote that comment, but my point still stands about the episode; what we got was ugly, regardless of the reason. This is the worst example of what Nickelodeon’s incompetence has done to the franchise; not only did the show essentially lose an episode, but the fans had to get sucker punched. If I wasn’t part of the fandom in anyway, I would never have found out about Nickelodeon’s budget cut. I assumed during my viewing that it was from the creators and, based on the staleness of the previous episode, thought the show really was taking a nose dive.

        November 22, 2014 at 5:13 pm

  10. Clander

    I just checked out this episode. Once I realized what it was I turned it off. I have zero interest in watching this episode. And after reading the tumblr post I am convinced this is the best decision they could have made. It just sucks that it had to be here at all. I remember complaining about them wasting time in the past. If I only knew

    November 23, 2014 at 3:07 am

  11. rosemon

    I just love how, even after three years, Mako still refuses to take any real responsibility for his cheating:

    “Hanging out with Asami was awesome. Everything wasn’t so cut and dry. I wasn’t dating Asami. Okaaay, maybe I was dating her; it was all very confusing. Well, me and Asami were never officially back together.”

    I wonder if the love triangle history dominating this episode is a sign that Korra will be forced back with him at the very end of the season. I won’t be surprised.
    Bryke wouldn’t have been in this situation if they had only written a better story from the beginning.

    November 23, 2014 at 9:23 am

  12. Brian

    I just realized something. Varrick referred to Jinora in one scene in this episode as a “fairy”. Odd how a product of European folklore exists in this Sino-centric universe.

    December 3, 2014 at 2:38 pm

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