Howdy, everyone. It's been a while since I wrote one of these, but I'm really in the mood to write something.
If you share any of the same interests that I do, you know that both The Legend of Korra and The Colbert Report have both ended. It's something we all know would happen, but it's still kinda sad.
Even though Korra's been around for a couple years, it still feels like it just started yesterday. When you do a series like Avatar, a show that became so loved and held in high regard, the natural question of 'How do you follow this?' comes up. It's like making a sequel to a really, REALLY good movie; you can't help but start comparing it to it's predecessor, even if they aren't meant to be similar. Even though both TLA and Korra are in the same universe, I find them both to be pretty different in their stories and characters. TLA had an overarching goal across 3 seasons; master the elements and stop the Fire Nation. Korra didn't really have that. Each season of Korra had it's own self contained story with it's own antagonist. That's not to say TLA didn't either; Book 1 was all about getting to the North Pole, but it was all part of the story to stop the Fire Lord, and affected the following season a little more than Korra because it got closer to that ultimate goal. I don't find that the same as each season having consequences that would follow over, something that Korra's story did more than TLA; Season 2 had the spirit and human worlds being open to one another and brought back the Air Nation.
When Korra first began, I felt that it was being compared to TLA a little too much, something I'll admit I'm a little guilty of at first. Like, I said before, even though Korra is a sequel to TLA, I feel it's an entire separate beast. Aside from the story structure, the characters and their relationships are way different. One of the main points of Korra's design is that she would be the opposite of Aang; whereas Aang was incredibly spiritual and a bit of a pacifist, Korra was a hot head and acted like a typical teenager. Another thing is that romance played a bigger part in Korra. In TLA, Aang's relationship with Katara was more innocent than anything in Korra's early episodes, because Aang and Katara were only kids. Korra's romance was, as the show's creator's put it "cheesy teen romance", which is right on the nose, for better or worse, depending on how you felt about it. To me, Korra wasn't the kind of girl to be in a relationship with a guy like Mako, who was a bit of stiff, compared to Korra's "play by my rules" attitude. When they ended the relationship at the end of season 2, I was kinda glad they abandoned that concept. Not that I don't like romance in an action-based series like this, but it would've gotten tiring if it played a part in the whole show. I will say though, I LOVED LOVED LOVED the relationship between Bolin and Opal and the relationship between Korra and Asami.
After seeing how well they were done, it makes me want to go back and re-watch the first two seasons, because like a lot of folks, I felt they were the weakest of the series, but I want to give it another shot now that the show is over. I thought season 1 wasn't TOO bad, because this was the introduction to this new world, and we were still learning how it changed from TLA. It was the same with season 2; I felt it was a bit rushed (like Korra's amnesia) but I didn't dislike it as much as most people. The only thing that DOES bother me is how Nickelodeon treated the show, even to the point of forcing them to do that recap episode in season 4, or firing a bunch of the staff. It feels like they just abandoned the show halfway through, like they just lost faith in it. One of my biggest pet peeves is stifling creativity, and that's exactly what I felt the network was doing.
But through it all, the world of Avatar left a big impact on me. There are a lot of things that inspire me, but Avatar is one that DRIVES me. The reason I love the series so much is that it leaves me thinking at the end of it, especially the emotion it can bring out in me. Not just "Oh, this week's episode was good", but feeling bad for characters, or freaking out over how amazing the fight scenes were, or in the case of the last 30 seconds of the Korra finale, crying like a lunatic over how beautiful it was.
It's something that makes me want to try harder and hopefully one day, make something just as good. I'm not really the best at conveying my feelings, especially in writing, so it really is tough to truly say HOW MUCH this series has done for me. It's easily one of the biggest inspirations to me, and it always will be.
...Okay, seriously, though? Korra and Asami? I squealed like a goddamn schoolgirl when I saw that.