The Legend of Aang: Earth

[SOEE #75]

This is the third of five Avatar shows, covering the second season of this amazing animated series.

Once again this episode has spoilers so we don’t recommend you listen until you’ve seen Book 2: Earth.

Joining me once again to talk about Earthbending, a heightened sense of emotional engagement and the most wonderful blind character in all of creation, I have Daniel Floyd, Pixar animator and the voice of Extra Credits, Joshua Garrity of the Cane and Rinse podcast and The Animation Archives, and from Gonzo Planet, Sharon Shaw, Jerome McIntosh and Duane Griffiths.

Next week, Book 3: Fire

Author: Alex Shaw

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  1. What’s that at 0:25:20? Flashbacks are going to be in Korra? It’s muffled.

    • With the huge amount of episode time it’s likely there will be flashbacks back to events before, during and after The Legend of Aang. Most of us on the podcast suspect Koh the Face Stealer will make a reappearance at some point.

      • I really hope he does. But what do you mean by huge amount of episode time? Are the episodes going to be longer?

        • Well apparently Nickelodeon have commissioned a further 40 episodes of Korra alone. (14 episodes to extend Season 1 to 26 and a further 26 for Season 2.) That’s over 14 HOURS of Avatar time we have to look forward to. A lot of scope for filling in the blanks in the history. I am jumping back and forth from foot to foot in anticipation!

          • There’s so much space ahead for all sorts of new stories in Korra, but after blazing through Legend of Aang and Korra with Dan/Josh’s recommendation, I have to say I’m feeling pretty anxious at where the series could go from there.

            Seeing at how Book 1 ended, I’m wary that Korra is going to become chained to Republic City, becoming it’s Super(wo)man against increasingly ridiculous baddies. On the other hand, there are still flashbacks to what Aang and co. were up to after what we saw, but there’s a risk they focus too much on what happened in the past, and have Korra as a footnote.

            Speculating on the future of the series is something I am extremely interested in hearing more about in the last episode of these podcasts, since while Legend of Aang was plotted out mostly from day 1, and is complete, but Korra is incomplete and has an uncertain future (seeing how Book 1’s course ran). How they take the series from here is incredibly important, as they now have to be able to come up with new and compelling stories in this world, and I’d love to hear from you all about some interesting stuff that could happen, because I’m not that FILLED WITH HOPE.

  2. Dark Horse is publishing three graphic novels that take place at the immediate end of the Legend of Aang. The third one isn’t out yet and promises to explain what happens to Zuko’s Mom.

  3. I was surprised, after all these hours, that you seemed to have missed something. Irohs angry words to Zuko being a shoutout to Babylon 5 – which started the idea of telling a story as a show.

  4. It’s neat that you keep mentioning how Appa looks like Catbus – two of the the Korean animators commented (on the special features) that they actually based the animation of Appa on Catbus, because they couldn’t find any real-world examples of six-legged mammals to reference.

  5. Regarding the review about the tree in the episode: “The Swamp”. Banyan trees actually grow, spread, dangle, and drop that vine into another root and grow again from it. (There is actually a whole ONE banyan tree-forest in India). This is also related to the idea of the world tree and symbolic in the interconnected-ness of “all things in the world”.

  6. Listening the Iroh’s clip for Tales of Basingse made me cry like a little girl, despite how many times I’ve seen it. Definitely one of my favorite parts of the entire city.

  7. Regarding lightning in Legend of Korra, we only see a few factory workers do it. Maybe they’re the only ones. Remember that trying to generate lightning is very dangerous, and could easily kill you even the mistake made is pretty tiny. As far as I know high-risk job have higher wages. Maybe Mako knew all along about the job, and was just desperate enough to finally join.

    I would also compare those lightning benders to electrical engineers, as opposed to regular poor factor workers.

    They have cars (Satomobiles), they would of course have some kind of fuel (gas or oil), so I doubt lightning benders is the source of energy in the city. What those factory workers did was probably for something on a smaller scale.

    The most compelling argument that I have is that the biggest crime lord in the whole city is named “Lightning Bolt Zolt.” I doubt he, of all people, would associate himself with a bunch of lower class factory workers. I’d like to think that the knowledge of lightning bending is heavily guarded and registered, and what made Zolt so special is that he knows about it, which made him so feared to the point he manages a multi-nationalities crime syndicate.

  8. I have a question for thee:

    What do you think about Mai VS the Earth Girl in Ba-sing-se?.

    In my mind May´s bond with Suko is abit. . .non-corporial than it Could have been, and in my heretical opinion I think Jin is a more interesting match.

    • We’ll talk about Mai and Zuko in the Book 3 episode. But for now I will say that Jin was a very nice girl, who may have been more than a little overwhelmed with everything that comes *with* Zuko. Mai at least is more prepared.

  9. Here’s an amazing little gem that blew my mind into pieces. According to human-rights advocates, there are an estimated 1,000 prison factories and farms in China. Guess it’s name…. it’s Laogai.

    A cartoon has more political sense than most movies or TV shows I have seen.

  10. I think that the flashbacks in “The Chase” actually can shed some light on how Azula feels about Uncle Iroh. Of course, much of it has to with how she took more to her father, but I think it’s also apparent that Iroh made little effort to bond with her. While he brought Zuko a thoughtful souvenir that he knew he’d love, but Azula’s gift seems more like an afterthought, he didn’t tailor his gift to her personality.

    To her, I imagine this would be a sign that he considered her to be something of an afterthought by just throwing a doll at her, as opposed to her father, who raved about her skill openly.

    Her fear of this, I think can also be seen in the finale, when Ozai declares himself Phoenix King, and then sort of tosses the Firelord title at her as a consolation prize. I think that she was already falling, but her father treating her with a sort of disdain, similar to her Uncle, was what pushed her off the edge.

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