Characters: The Legend Of Korra New Team Avatar

This is a partial character sheet for The Legend of Korra. Visit here for the main character index. Subjective trope and audience reactions should go on the YMMV page.

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    In General 
Avatar Aang was not alone in his adventures up to seventy years ago, and neither is Avatar Korra today. This section details the titular Avatar Korra and her closest human (and animal) companions in her adventures.
  • The Aces/Broken Aces: All four of them are incredibly skilled prodigies in their various fields and can rival anybody with their prowess (as explained in detail in their character pages). Even Bolin, who initially subverted this trend, becomes this in Book 4 after fully mastering Lavabending. They also suffer a lot of personal heartbreaks and tragedies, both in the past and other the course of all four books, that change them as characters.
  • All Loving Heroes: By the series finale, all of them have proven to go to any lengths to help those in need.
  • Amicable Exes: Considering how horrendously messy the love quadrangle got between the four, they all eventually mature enough to put it behind them and be great friends.
  • And the Adventure Continues: After defeating Kuvira and her Army, the group knows that they'll have other battles to fight in the future, but the series ends with them enjoying the peace they managed to earn.
  • Badass: All of them have proven their feat of badassery.
  • Badass Crew: As mentioned above individually every member of the Krew is Badass on their own, when together in a group or pair they tend to be almost unstoppable to all but the most dangerous of villains (this is especially apparent whenever their Honorary True Companions join in on a fight).
  • Break The Cuties: Each member has gone through moments that have personally damaged them and some part of their innocence, even Bolin's moments that are mostly Played for Laughs (i.e.running in tears after seeing Mako and Korra kiss), are hard to watch.
  • Breaking the Fellowship: In Book 4, after the Time Skip; Mako and Asami are pursuing their own lives in Republic City, Bolin has signed on with Knight Templar Kuvira, and Korra is still trying to recover from the events of Book 3. Korra eventually mends her body, mind, and spirit, Bolin eventually sees Kuvira for the despot she is and bails, and Mako and Asami were still around in Republic City and welcomed the other two back with open arms.
  • Dating Do-Si-Do: In Book One Mako and Asami date, which leads to Korra and Bolin going on one date, before Mako begins two timing both Korra and Asami. With Bolin out, the Korra-Mako-Asami triangle eventually self destructs by the end of Book Two. The Grand Finale of Book Four has Korra and Asami get together instead. In contrast to the original Team Avatar (Aang and Katara, Sokka and Suki) Korra at least entertained the option of every member of her team, and Mako and Asami had a thing with each other for a time. While Bolin gave up dating within the team by Book One, he had relationships with a few different supporting characters anyway.
  • Earn Their Happy Ending: They each went through their own struggles, but ultimately found happiness.
    • After their struggles and obstacles, Asami and Korra become an Official Couple and decide to take a romantic vacation in the Spirit World.
    • Bolin manages to maintain his relationship with Opal despite the shaky ground they had due to his former affiliation with Kuvira.
    • While Mako does not end up in a relationship with anyone, he has become a better person, and Word of God states that if/when he meets his true love, he'll make use of the lessons he's learned.
  • Famed In-Story: The entire team. Korra is famous as the newest Avatar. Mako and Bolin both gained some fame by making it to the Pro-Bending finals, and Bolin furthered his celebrity status by landing the starring role in one of the first movers. Asami is famous as the head of Future Industries, though she started out as a Fallen Princess.
  • Freudian Trio: Korra is Id. She's brash, stubborn and tends to charge in without thinking (she tones it down in later seasons but it's still there). Mako is Superego, he's focused, withdrawn, tries to control his emotions and is fairly aloof. Bolin and Asami are Ego, the middle ground who try to balance self-control with a flighty attitude.
  • Heroes Unlimited: By Book 4, "Team Avatar" as a distinct group is dead, and the various group members more often operate separately, in concert with other recurring allies, than they do as Team Avatar. By the Series Finale, Team Avatar is together again and they fight alongside the many allies they have gained for the final battle.
  • Hero with Bad Publicity:
    • In Book Three, Korra takes a lot of flak for her decision to leave the Spirit Portals open at the end of Book 2.
      • By Book Four, that appears to have been subverted since Republic City has accepted the changes overtime along with Asami helping with completing construction to incorporate the changes.
    • The entire team has a bounty placed on their heads by the Earth Queen after they rescue the airbenders the Dai Li had been conscripting.
  • La Résistance:
    • They briefly serve as one against the Equalists after the Equalists take over Republic City.
    • Again in book Four, they serve as one after President Raiko surrenders to Kuvira.
  • Mixed Ancestry: Mako and Bolin are the children of a Fire Nation mother and Earth Kingdom father, Korra's parents come from either Water Tribe and if "The Promise" and her eye color are any indication, Asami's Fire Nation with some degree of Earth Kingdom heritage.
  • Quirky Household: Korra moves in with Tenzin's family at the start of the series. Over the next three seasons, Tenzin's siblings join them, as well as Mako and Bolin. Even Asami is welcome in the household without explicit invitation. Bolin lampshades all their archetypes over dinner including crazy kids Jinora and her siblings, brooding teenager Mako, grumpy dad Tenzin, put-upon mom Pema, and wacky uncle Bumi.
  • Ragtag Bunch of Misfits: In comparison to Aang's Team Avatar, which had a prodigy waterbender taught by a master, arguably the strongest earthbender in the world who was also the world's only metalbender, and a royal firebender, all of whom were respected as powerhouses. By comparison, Korra's team has two reasonably skilled pro-benders (earth and fire) in a world where many of the skills that made the original Team Avatar strong have long since become common knowledge. Though overtime, Mako and Bolin both Took a Level in Badass. Bolin learned Lavabending. Asami is a Fallen Princess, but is still Badass nonetheless. And Korra became the first Avatar with metalbending in her repertoire.
  • The Team: The core team consists of the old Fire Ferrets team and Asami, but they usually work with an extended team of allies.
  • We Were Your Team: When Korra left and was gone longer than they expected, Team Avatar disbanded. In other words, there just wasn't a Team Avatar without the Avatar. By the time Korra came back, they transitioned back into the hero business (though with a readjustment period) in time to focus on taking down Kuvira, but with more resources and an expanded network of Honorary True Companions.

    Avatar Korra 
"No matter what happens, no matter how crazy things get, I'll always try to restore balance."

Avatar Korra

Voiced by Janet Varney,
Cora Baker (as a child)note 

Korra is the present Avatar, successor to (and reincarnation of) Aang. Born to the Waterbenders Tonraq and Senna, she is a teenage girl from the Southern Water Tribe with a rebellious streak. On her quest to become a fully realized Avatar and pacify the anti-benders in the United Republic, she asks Tenzin to teach her Airbending.
  • '20s Bob Haircut: Sports a messy version of this in Book Four after her Important Haircut during the three year Time Skip.
  • The Ace: Even more so than Aang, or most known Avatars for that matter:
    • Korra learned to bend three of the four elements without any training by the age of four, and picked up airbending incredibly fast once she got over the spiritual block that prevented her from using it. She's also learned numerous sub-skills, most of which she picked up within days: healing, spiritual waterbending, metalbending, and energybending.
    • In addition to bending, Korra has considerable physical prowess, enough to easily lift Tenzin and his children at the same time. Korra is also a highly proficient unarmed fighter, able to defeat several chi blockers before being rescued by Naga.
    • While she started out with an extreme lack of spirituality, she ultimately developed a stronger spiritual link than even Aang, who excelled at that. Tenzin lampshades how much of an Ace she is in the series finale.
    Tenzin: Korra, you've managed to transform the world more in a few years than most Avatars did in their lifetimes.
  • Achilles' Heel: If she dies in the Avatar state, the entire cycle will cease to exist.
  • Action Girl: Korra is the link between the spiritual and physical world, and sole possessor of the power to master all four elements. As such, she can kick just about anyone's butt.
  • Acquired Situational Narcissism: Catches a bit of this at the start of Book 2 when she becomes convinced that she has already mastered airbending and dismisses Tenzin's teachings because she defeated Amon. After she gets in touch with Raava again she realizes she was being a jerk and apologizes.
  • Aesop Amnesia: Justified example. The finale of Book 2 had Tenzin stress that being the Avatar wasn't all there is to Korra, but that lesson didn't quite stick through Book 3, since she's been identifying herself as the Avatar since she was four, and it's hard for someone to move past that easily. The fact that she can't ask her past selves for advice anymore probably doesn't help. However, she does get better by the end of the series.
  • All Girls Want Bad Boys:
    • Korra naturally falls for the dark, brooding, distant Makonote  instead of his cheerful, approachable younger brother Bolin. It doesn't last.
    • Averted in the end as Korra ends up dating the sweet and kind Asami.
  • All Loving Heroine: For all the jerkassery she is capable of, Korra always does her best to help and save the people around her.
  • All Your Powers Combined: As with all Avatars, Korra has access to all four elements, and the Avatar State gives her access to the collective knowledge and power of her past lives. As of the Book 2 finale, Korra's connection to her past lives has been severed, preventing her from calling upon past Avatars.
  • Amazonian Beauty: She has (for a female character) robust musculature on her arms, legs and torso, acts pretty boyish at times, and is considered very attractive by Bolin, Mako, Tahno, and more. It's a testament to the artists' amazing skills that she can just as easily assume elegant flexibility and teenage cuteness, just by shifting posture.
  • Amicable Exes: Played with. She and Mako eventually break up since they realize they just don't work as a couple. Korra moves on surprisingly well and tries to convince Mako to try to remain good friends and teammates despite the whole mess that their relationship was. While Mako doesn't bear any negative feelings against her, either, he feels just too awkward around her to even be friends with her anymore... especially since she's now gal pals with his other ex-girlfriend, Asami. They get better, eventually, and re-establish their friendship.
  • Anti-Hero:
    • She might be a bit brash, arrogant and hot-tempered, but her heart is always in the right place, she always fights for what's right, and always tries to help people out whenever possible. Push her too far though and she will show the anti-hero side, as she did to Tarrlok who she appeared ready to kill or seriously injure (the narrator later outright saying he resorted to bloodbending to "save himself" from Korra's attack).
    Tarrlok "See, that's what I admire about you Korra, your willingness to go to extremes to get what you want."
    • Really kicked up a notch in "Civil Wars, Part 2", where she publicly threatens to kill the judge when he sentences her father and a group of rebel southern water tribesmen to death, then later (after the sentence was reduced to life imprisonment) used Naga to intimidate him into reversing his decision. Once she discovered that the trial was a set-up, she threatened to have Naga eat him if he didn't spill everything he knew.
    • Goes even further in the finale of Book 3. Believing that Zaheer has killed her father and understandably enraged, she vows to kill every Red Lotus member in front of her, though she ends up focusing her attention on Zaheer.
  • Arrogant Kung Fu Gal: In Korra's first present-day scene, her teachers complain that she is amazingly good at learning the physical sides of bending, but amazingly bad at learning the discipline and spirituality that goes with it.
  • Attack of the 50-Foot Whatever: In the Book 2 finale, she's able to use the cosmic energy of the universe to project her spirit as a giant in order to match Unalaq's One-Winged Angel form.
  • Badass: As an Avatar, it's kind of required.
  • Badass Adorable: There is no denying this. Girl can go from kicking ass to making you want to hug her with her infamous pout. This is especially true in the pilot, where she was already bending fire, earth, and water at the age of four.
  • Badass Arm-Fold: Does this pretty well. It helps that her usual outfits don't have sleeves.
  • Badass Bisexual: Word of God has confirmed her bisexuality.
  • Badass in Distress: During "When Extremes Meet" and "Out of the Past" when she's been kidnapped by Tarrlok. Also when she's briefly captured by Zaheer and his gang in "The Terror Within", then later in "The Stakeout" by the Earth Queen's forces.
  • Badass Princess: Was already a Badass from the start, but she didn't fulfill the "Princess" part until the Southern Water Tribe has their own chief, who was Korra's father, Tonraq.
  • Battle Couple:
    • With Mako, at least when they were together.
    • And with Asami at the series end.
  • Beauty Is Never Tarnished: She got a long scar on her face from her fight with Tarrlok, and it hadn't been attended for at least a day. On the day following her escape, it's nowhere to be seen. Justified because Korra is a skilled healer and the cuts, despite being ugly, were not deep.
    • Averted in the season 3 finale. After nearly being killed by the Red Lotus poison, Korra is still out of action two weeks later. She's confined to a wheelchair, looks pale, has bags under her eyes, and is just a complete mess.
    • Averted still in early Book 4. Korra spends much of the non-flashback time in Chapter 2 "Korra Alone" nursing the injuries she took in the Earthbender fight ring, most noticeably a swollen eyelid.
  • Belligerent Sexual Tension: Korra and Mako have a bit of this going on in the first half of Book 1, but they later subvert it by admitting their feelings and stopping the arguing.
    Mike: The earlier episodes had set up that Korra and Mako were kinda at each other's throats but they also kinda have a little attraction to each other.
    • Subverted later when after they begin dating in season 2 the arguing and getting on each others nerves comes back stronger than ever, then gets added to both putting their jobs first, eventually lead to their break up. Both admit that while they make great friends they don't really work as a couple.
  • Berserk Button:
    • Hurting innocent people or anyone close to her is a good way to entice a beatdown. And God help you if you actually succeed in harming someone seriously...
    • Her parents in particular are a very sore spot for her. It's worth noting that every time Korra has outright threatened to kill someone, it's because they harmed her family in some manner.
    • She gets sore whenever anyone mentions that they "stole" the Earth Queen's airbenders.
  • Better The Devil You Know: Though Korra doesn't like the Earth Queen, she doesn't agree with Zaheer's plan to kill her and the other world leaders. As bad as she is, the chaos in her absence would be worse. When they succeed in killing her, Korra's concerns are shown to be justified. And the chaos is finally brought under control, but it's through Earth Emperor Kuvira, a former Zaofu captain turned ruthless dictator who is even worse than the Earth Queen, and who serves as the Big Bad of Book 4.
  • Betty and Veronica:
    • The Veronica to Asami's Betty for Mako's Archie.
    • She's also the Archie for Bolin's Betty and Mako's Veronica. It's that kind of show.
    • She finally ends up the Archie to Mako's Veronica and Asami's Betty.
  • Beware the Nice Ones: Jerk-ish tendencies aside, Korra is very easy to get along with, is a Cool Big Sis to Tenzin's children, and will help anybody in need. But push her Berserk Button, and it quickly becomes apparent that "pacifist" in any flavor is not part of her definition of being the Avatar.
  • Big Good: As the Avatar, she is supposed to be this. However, her position has often been compromised because she has extremely poor restraint when upset. Not to mention her being manipulated by Manipulative Bastards or Well Intentioned Extremists.
    • The increasingly complex politics of her era, compared to the monolithic military states that existed before, also make it difficult to be simply the Big Good of the setting.
    • By the end of the series, after Korra's Character Development, she is mature and confident and appears ready to fulfill this role to the best of her ability. She happily promises Prince Wu that she will help him reform the Earth Kingdom.
  • Big Sister Instinct: Gains a protective streak for Jinora after the young airbender becomes her Spirit Guide. Korra most likely has the same feelings for Meelo and Ikki.
  • Bi the Way: The show's final scene makes it about as clear as possible under Nick's S&P that she and Asami are involved. Not only does the end of the whole series center around the two of them, but they hold hands and look lovingly into each other's eyes as they head off to a private vacation in the Spirit World. Later confirmed by the creators to be their intention.
  • Blithe Spirit: She's certainly making an impact even in the constraints of Republic City. Though it's deconstructed when most of the authority figures dislike her recklessness or outright manipulate her for personal gain.
  • Blood Knight: A tamed example. In Book 3, Korra lets out steam over Queen Hou-Ting by doing sparring practice with Asami. After her recovery in early Season 4, however, she denounces fighting as something the "old [her]" would do and tries to diplomatically stop Kuvira.
  • Blow You Away: She initially can't airbend, but Amon's attempt to De-power her unlocks it.
  • Blue Blood: Season 2 reveals that her father Tonraq is brother to the Northern Water Tribe chieftain, and in fact used to be in line for the position himself, being the elder brother. At the end of season 2 Tonraq is elected chief of the Southern Water Tribe, making Korra technically the southern tribe's princess.
  • Blue Is Heroic: Korra is from the Southern Water Tribe, by default the main color scheme for her outfits are blue.
  • Boisterous Bruiser: She rarely fights out of outright malice; it's simply her preferred way of dealing with conflict.
  • Boobs of Steel: Korra is one of, if not the most physically capable character on the show. She is also very well endowed.
  • Boyish Short Hair: After her Important Haircut, she sports short hair throughout the rest of the series.
  • Braids, Beads and Buckskins: Downplayed. Korra wears a tan-colored, fur-trimmed pelt around her waist and a parka while at the South Pole. While in Air Temple vestments, she still wears a few of her Water Tribe accessories.
  • Bratty Half-Pint: Korra's Establishing Character Moment is when (at four years old) she demonstrates her ability to use three of the four elemental powers that she's not supposed to manifest until she's sixteen, busting through a wall in the process.
    Korra: I'm the Avatar! You gotta deal with it!
  • Bratty Teenage Daughter: Though not actually related to Tenzin, his status as The Stoic and Team Dad and Korra's Hotblooded nature means they frequently butt heads, so Tenzin sometimes sees her this way. Tenzin even begs his children at one point not to grow up to be teenagers like Korra. Jinora declares she will make no such promises.
  • Break the Cutie: At the end of Book 3, being poisoned by the Red Lotus, coupled with hallucinations of her past foes telling her that she's no longer needed, leaves her broken physically and emotionally. Though she's said to be recovering, she is in a wheelchair and looks utterly worn down. It's especially notable that, unlike the past two Books, Korra doesn't snap back at the end of this one. It ends with her still depressed.
  • Break the Haughty:
    • In "The Voice in the Night". The idea of having her bending taken from her is so terrifying that she is afraid to fight back until her bravado forces her to try. Amon just made it worse by easily capturing her and taunting her about how he's saving her for last.
    • The first five episodes of Book 2 causes this as well. She asserted her independence from her father and Tenzin, but was manipulated by Unalaq. This directly led to her father almost getting sentenced to death, a budding civil war that could turn bloody at any moment, all the people who could help her being unable to due to politics, and breaking up with her boyfriend due to said politics.
  • Broken Ace: While she had some slight leanings towards trope in the first half of the series, due to a combination of her Friendless Background making it difficult to interact with people initially (and unintentionally be jerks to them) and her Inferiority Superiority Complex about being the Avatar allowing her to be manipulated by her enemies and suffer Heroic BSOD whenever they get the drop on her, she was steadily moving past these traits and getting closer to being a true Ace. Then come the end of Book 3 and almost dying from mercury poisoning leaves a huge damage for her physically and mentally. It takes about two years of intense physical therapy and Toph's help for her to recover, and she becomes a bon a fide Ace by the end of the series.
  • Broken Bird: At the end of Book 3 she almost dies of mercury poisoning, which leaves her severely traumatized. It takes her about two and a half years of intense physical thereby to start walking again and during that time she starts suffering from PTSD which manifests in the form of flashbacks to her fight against Zaheer. A combination of her PTSD and being stuck in a wheelchair for so long means that she can't fight as well as she used to and even low level thugs can kick her butt and if that weren't bad enough she starts hallucinating about her Avatar-state self attacking her. By the time we see her again post Time Skip she is lost, scared and confused while trying to find her way in life. By the end of Book 4 however once she lets go of the shame and fear she feels from every major loss she suffered from her enemies and accepts the pain that comes with it she evolves out of this state by the end of the series. She even states after accepting what happened to her, she feels whole, and it will make her stronger, which she proves by defeating Kuvira and becoming the hero she was born to be as well as finding happiness with Asami.
  • Brought Down to Normal: When in the spirit world through meditation, she has no bending except for her ability to open and close the portals. Except possibly not, if what Raava said is true about being "most powerful" in the Spirit realm.
  • Bruiser with a Soft Center: She is willing to put aside her immature and arrogant attitude in order to save people's lives.
  • Calling the Old Man Out:
    • Does this to her father after learning that he and Tenzin were responsible for her being locked up at the White Lotus Compound.
    • Does this to Unalaq after she learns the truth, which doubles as a "Reason You Suck" Speech: Unalaq is one of the reasons why the spirits are out of balance since he manipulated Tonraq into destroying the Spirit Forest to get him banished and purposely makes things worse between the tribes by occupying the South. When he tries to justify his actions, Korra throws them in his face since the only thing he cares about is power.
  • Cat Smile: She has these moments with her friends.
    • She sports one, at the begining of Book 2, when she's sharing a cotton candy with her boyfriend.
    • During the series finale, she sports one after Asami tricks Tenzin into leaving them alone.
  • Character Development: Korra begins the series as rather bad at controlling her anger and keeping calm, but shows a greater deal of self-restraint with each successive Book. She is putting more effort to negotiating ways out of violence, and isn't so quick to resort to excessive force during fights. Even during her more pragmatic moments in "Civil Wars, Part 2", she only uses the Avatar State as a means to help the group break the blockade and escape and didn't resort to killing her uncle on the spot. After meeting Wan and regaining her memories, Korra goes through another development where she is calmer and, most importantly, begins apologizing to her mentors like Tenzin for how she acted before. This development also shows physically when she is finally able to calm the dark spirits—showing she has gained a bit of inner peace. More than that, the spirit world showed that Korra deep inside was a scared, helpless little girl whose growth was stunted ever since she imposed the identity of being the Avatar over herself. Only when she found her own light and individuality did she symbolically grow up. By the end of Book 2 she redefined the role of the Avatar and ushered a new age where humans and spirits live together. In Book 3, she proves much more receptive to Suyin's metalbending training than she did with Tenzin's airbending training, demonstrating a willingness to learn that she didn't have two seasons ago.
    • Taken to its logical conclusion in the Grand Finale. Here, Korra finally beats Kuvira by showing the latter compassion and understanding. Compare this to the Korra from the earlier books who would have more than likely simply opted to try to beat her up more until she surrendered.
    • Korra also lowers down her Hot-Blooded nature and Leeroy Jenkins tendencies to the point she can verbally threaten someone into doing what she wants (e.g., Baatar Jr. into concinving Kuvira to surrender or she'll [Korra] will make it her duty to keep him away from his true love.)
  • Charles Atlas Superpower: Korra embodies this trope to a degree unusual even within her franchise. In addition to being able to wield the four elements and having a Super Mode that can expertly crack continental plates without mussing anyone's hair, her sheer brute strength allows her to effortlessly pick up and fling around grown men taller than her. In the Book Three finale, she becomes so enraged that she breaks apart unbendable platinum chains by nothing but raw strength.
  • The Chief's Daughter: Her father is effectively the chief of the Southern Water Tribe, even though her paternal uncle Unalaq is actually the chief of both tribes. Played straight once the tribes formally split at the end of Book 2, leaving Tonraq as the chief.
  • Child Prodigy: Even more so than Aang; she could already bend water, fire, and earth before the White Lotus even confirmed her as the Avatar. She has, however, admitted a lack of understanding when the spiritual aspects of bending and being the Avatar come up.
  • The Chosen One: She is the Avatar, but her journey is about realizing just what this truly means.
  • Chromatic Arrangement: Blue, though her personality fits the typical red.
  • Chronic Hero Syndrome: One of her most defining traits from the beginning of the show; Korra seems to have an almost obsessive desire to help people around her whenever she can, sometimes at her own expense, which is evident during her first fight with the Triple Threat Triad.
  • Closet Key: For Asami.
  • Combat Medic: She fights with any bending she deems appropriate and heals with her waterbending.
  • Comes Great Responsibility: She has powers far beyond any single bender and is tasked to maintaining balance in the world. Because of this, she's hunted by people who want to hurt her, hated by people she doesn't or can't help, and is often used as a pawn, threat, excuse or justification in the political machinations of the adults around her.
  • Contralto of Danger: Korra has a deeper voice than some of the other female characters, like Asami or Pema. This gets Turned Up to Eleven when she enters the Avatar state, which makes her voice deeper still and more intimidating with a reverberating echo.
  • Contrasting Sequel Main Character: She's designed to be the "anti-Aang". Her official bio even says she couldn't have less in common with Aang if she tried. While Aang didn't want to be the Avatar, Korra quickly embraced it and desired it. Aang became an airbending master at a young age but had to learn the other elements and master them with great difficulty; Korra was a natural water, earth, and firebender but had great difficulty in unlocking her airbending. Aang, being a free-spirit, was better in tune with his spiritual side; Korra, who is brash, confrontational, and direct, excels with the physical side of bending, but has great trouble dealing with the spiritual side. Aang was a Martial Pacifist who seemed opposed to killing anyone for any reason, while Korra is fully willing to kill if she feels it is justified. And, obviously, Aang was a boy while Korra is a girl. Even how they picked up the physical side of bending is contrasted. While Aang, like any Avatar presumably, was able to learn the basics of his three non-native bendings with relative ease (aside from earth, and even that didn't take him long), he was slower to learn more advanced bending forms at first. On the subject of love interests, Aang only had eyes for Katara for all his life from the moment they met. Korra on the other hand gets involved with various levels of seriousness with all three of her companions at some time over the course of the show. She and Bolin only went so far as light flirting and a date. Korra and Mako dated for a fair while but their differences puled them apart. Asami began as her romantic rival and became her girlfriend.
  • Cool Big Sis: While not biologically related to Tenzin, she is a live-in student and eats at the family table instead of with the Air Acolytes. Meelo and Ikki have imitated Korra whenever she's frustrated, which does not please Tenzin at all. But Tenzin also cares about her on a personal level.
  • Cosmetic Catastrophe: In one episode she decides to try out that "powdering your nose" thing she's heard about. Sinister music plays as she suspiciously picks up the puff, only for powder to explode all over her face.
  • Country Mouse: Korra spent her whole life at the South Pole and is amazed when she sees Republic City for the first time.
  • Crush Blush: Happens a few times over the course of the series in regards to Korra's two main love interests.
    • In Book One she sports this a few times around Mako the two most significant times being during their Sleep Cute moment in "The Revelation" and their Big Damn Kiss at the end off "Endgame."
    • She also gives an adorable one in Book Four during "Reunion" after Asami compliments her new hair cut.
  • Cursed with Awesome: As previously mentioned, she is potentially a more powerful bender than even Aang, but she's often manipulated or threatened by events outside of her control, some of which have been festering long before she was born.
  • Cute Bruiser: She's not particularly tall, but she is capable of lifting men much taller than herself. With one arm. And lifting Tenzin's entire family in a bear-hug without even realizing she's doing so.
  • The Cynic: In contrast to Aang, who was the definition of a Wide-Eyed Idealist, Korra is rather cynical at times. Where Aang always believed that conflict could be resolved without violence, Korra tends to assume that enemies can't be reasoned with and jump right to fighting. She starts growing out of this is Book 4, thanks to the teachings of Toph and reconnecting with Raava.
  • Daddy's Girl: Korra has a close relationship to her dad.
  • Dance Battler: Korra sure loves flips and kicks. It's also evident in the way she navigates the Airbending obstacle course. Jinora's demonstration is fairly clinical: she turns on a dime but keeps her upper body rigid. Korra uses a lot of spinning to do the same.
  • Darkest Hour: Happens Once a Season.
    • In Book 1, this comes after the Equalists have been defeated, Korra has been debended by Amon and only retains the airbending she spontaneously learned afterward. Even Katara, the greatest healer in the world, is unable to undo the damage, and so we see Korra alone at the edge of a cliff back in the South Pole. Things get better when Aang shows up and restores her bending.
    • In Book 2, she briefly loses Raava and thus her connection to the Avatar Cycle. She is then able to reclaim Raava and become the Avatar once more, though her past lives are permanently severed.
    • In Book 3, the Red Lotus uses a metallic poison on her in an attempt to end the Avatar Cycle. Though she survives, the poison leaves her wheelchair-bound and her hallucinations cause her considerable distress, such that she barely shows any emotion. Unlike the last two books, there isn't an easy fix for this one. The season's final shot is her looking completely broken and shedding a single tear. The following season shows that it took two years of intensive therapy for her to even walk again, and then another to come to terms with everything that had happened and come back to full strength.
  • Deadpan Snarker: Not often, but every now and then she's sarcastic.
  • Despair Event Horizon: Seems to have hit this by the Season 4 premiere. She eventually returns from this through Character Development by reconnecting with her friends and overcoming her PSTD.
  • Destructive Savior:
    • In "Welcome to Republic City", she quickly puts down a trio of gang members. However, it results in greater property damage than the gang members themselves would have caused. This puts her and Lin Beifong at odds. In "When Extremes Meet", she and the new Team Avatar similarly tear up large sections of the street in pursuit of the chi-blockers. Tarrlok tries to call her on it, but lacks the force of personality to keep her in check.
    • Gets worse during the Water Tribe Civil War — Korra's decision to support the South instead of remaining neutral or pushing for peace causes the situation to escalate even further. Mako even calls her out for it, which leads to him breaking up with her.
  • Detached Sleeves: Her outfit for Book 2 has this.
  • Determinator: She never stops trying to reach her goals. Korra doesn't do things in halves.
  • Didn't Think This Through:
    • A notable trait of her character at first, something that Amon takes advantage of.
    • This really bit her when she came into the spirit world through meditation, leaving her defenseless against Unalaq, who came in through the portal and could thus bend. The fact that Vaatu can track Raava, who resides within the Avatar, didn't help either.
  • Discard and Draw:
    • Occurs in "Endgame". Amon takes away her current bending abilities... but in doing so unlocks her airbending and previously suppressed spiritual side. The latter allows Aang to finally speak to her in person, and with his help she not only regains the rest of her abilities, but achieves the Avatar State and learns how to restore the bending of everyone else Amon has hurt.
    • And again in "Light in the Dark". Unalaq and Vaatu extract Raava from her, ending the Avatar cycle. Tenzin, however, shows her how to draw in the cosmic energy of the universe, allowing her to fight the pair on equal terms and get Raava back, starting the cycle anew.
  • Dishing Out Dirt: Infrequently employed by Korra, due to the collateral damage it causes in an urban area.
  • Dreaming of Times Gone By: Occasionally has visions of her past life as Aang, when knocked unconscious.
  • Drives Like Crazy: She "parked" Asami's car by smashing it into a lamppost near the docks and netting about 10 tickets in the process. She immediately points out that she does not know how to drive. Bolin compliments her on doing that well, given the circumstances. Asami later gives her a lesson, and ends up screaming at her to hit the clutch. In season 3 it turns out that despite her Hot-Blooded personality she drives excessively slowly and cautiously.
  • Dude Magnet: Bolin, Mako and Prince Wu are attracted to her. Tahno offers to show her how a "real pro bends." It makes it ironic when Korra ends up in a relationship with Asami at the end of the series rather than any of the male characters.
  • Dude, Where's My Respect?: Even if she is the Avatar, her Northern cousins, Desna and Eska, still look down on her. They're somewhat better about it after their father is defeated.
  • Dynamic Entry: See Establishing Character Moment. Also, in the Book 2 finale, she greets Unavaatu with a spirit laser to the face.
  • Easy Amnesia: After being swallowed whole by a gigantic Dark Spirit, Korra wakes up days later on a beach with no memory of who she is or how she got there. She recovers it a couple episodes later.
  • Effortless Amazonian Lift:
    • While hugging Tenzin, Jinora, Ikki, and Meelo, she manages to effortlessly lift them off the ground. All at once.
    • Also easily lifts a man several inches taller than her by the collar, with one arm, and holds him in the air for a while.
    • Then, during Episode 6, she hangs onto the edge of the ring with one hand, holding onto the very tall Mako with the other, and throws him back into the ring with one arm.
    • She lifts up Bataar Jr, who is strapped to a chair, over her head with one arm, meaning she's lifting both Bataar's entire mass over her head, as well as the chair which was probably a solid quality piece of furniture.
  • Elemental Eye Colors: Though she's the Avatar, and thus can wield all four elements, she is still natively a water tribesman and has vibrant blue eyes.
  • Eleventh Hour Superpower: Airbending at the end of Book 1. Then she gains the power to restore the bending of Amon's victims. In the Book 2 finale, she is able to tap into the cosmic energy of the universe and project her spirit as a giant on par with Vaatu/Unalaq.
  • Embarrassing Nickname: Korra has inherited Aang's nickname of "Twinkletoes" from Toph.
  • Emotions vs. Stoicism: The heart-on-her-sleeve emotional to Mako's and Asami's cool-under-pressure stoicism.
  • Enlightenment Superpowers: Korra has great difficulty with the spiritual aspects of being the Avatar, which is a problem because her ability to consciously access the Avatar State depends on spiritual enlightenment. When Korra realizes that the loss of her bending does not make her any less valuable a person, Aang appears and gives it back to her, as well as the ability to restore anyone else's bending. In the Book 2 finale, she also learns to access the cosmic energy of the universe to project herself as a giant spirit. In the Book 4 finale, she achieves a new level of this trope when she tanks the Spirit Ray Cannon firing out of control; a device that has previously been shown blasting holes through mountains. She then disposes of all that spirit energy by opening a third Spirit Portal in the middle of the city.
  • Establishing Character Moment: Her entrance. She Earthbends a wall across the room, loudly and proudly proclaims herself the Avatar, and demonstrates by bending three elements at once. She's four.
  • Extra Ore Dinary: Thanks to tutelage from Suyin Beifong and her twin sons, Korra has become the first Avatar to acquire the Earthbending skill subset of Metalbending.
  • Even Girls Want Her: While she attracts the attention of a number of different men throughout the series, Asami eventually becomes attracted to her, and Korra reciprocates.
  • Failure Hero: Zigzagged - While Korra has been successful in saving the day, there are times when she plays this trope straight. Her journey through the series could be considered her eventually being able to subvert this trope.
    • Korra makes a lot of mistakes over the first two seasons which is partly due to her growing up in isolation due to how the White Lotus raised her. However, she is able to defeat the Big Bads of those seasons and put an end to their plans. Additionally, she also understands that they also had a valid point which affects some of her decisions and gives her Character Development.
    • During Season Three she begun to mature and learn from a number of her mistakes. She finds out that her actions during Book Two has caused a number of new airbenders to emerge in the world and she plays a vital role in helping Tenzin reestablish the Air Nation. Unfortunately, this trope is mostly played straight toward the end. The Red Lotus capture her twice, and her plan to rescue the airbenders almost completely failed. After she is poisoned by the Red Lotus, she is able to prevent them from killing her in her Avatar State right away, but she ultimately needs help from Jinora and the other airbenders to defeat Zaheer. As a result of being poisoned during her capture, she is crippled and it takes her three years to fully recover.
    • During Season Four, after finally recovering her ability to walk (which in itself was a struggle), she is unable to get back into the swing of fighting right away. This leads to her getting beaten up on multiple occasions in the first half of the season, including by Toph, Kuvira, and random earthbenders.
      • Ultimately, Korra subverts this trope during the second half of Season Four between saving Prince Wu from Kuvira's forces, managing to overcome her PTSD by facing Zaheer, saving multiple people, including Jinora, from the Spirit Wilds, taking up a leadership position against Kuvira's forces, and ultimately defeating Kuvira and convincing her to surrender.
  • Fangirl: Of pro-bending.
  • Fatal Flaw: Pre-Character Development, her confrontational nature coupled with immaturity has nearly costs her life.
  • First Girl Wins: Sorry Asami. Subverted after her break-up with Mako.
    • Sorry Mako. In the end, it turns out Korra and Asami are "First Girl" to each other.
  • Fish out of Water: A big part of Korra's development in the first season. Moving from an isolated compound in the South Pole (which was already slower to develop than the other nations) to the booming urban center of Republic City causes a lot of problems.
  • Fisher Queen: The spirit world reacts to people's positive and negative energy, especially the Avatar's.
  • Fluffy Tamer: The first person to have ever tamed a polar bear dog.
  • Foil: To Mako, Asami, Avatar Wan and to an extent, Tenzin.
    • Korra and Mako — Korra is the dark-skinned native from the Southern Water Tribe, and is of Mixed Ancestry because her parents were born into different Water Tribes (Mother-Southern, Father-Northern). Her parents were with her entire life, and admitted that other people (her parents and the White Lotus) were always taking care of her. Before a huge amount of Character Development, she was prone to emotional outbursts and never was afraid to let people know what she thought; Mako is a light-skinned native from Republic City. His and Bolin's parents were killed when they were quite young, and since then, they had to always try to make ends meet. Mako is the "cool-under-fire" guy, meaning he doesn't let his emotions cloud his judgement, making it hard to express his real feelings. Then there's the way they operate in missions: Korra leads Team Avatar freestyle, with no rules, while Mako plays by the book.
    • Korra and Asami — Korra is the brash, confrontational Tomboy, a powerful bender (Avatar, to be exact), and undergoes an enormous amount of Character Development; Asami is the polite, levelheaded Girly Girl, a nonbender (still Badass Normal), and is more of a well-rounded character.
    • Korra and Avatar Wan — Korra is the current Avatar, continuing to maintain balance in the world. As of Book 2 season finale and onward, she is the first Avatar of a new cycle and was born into the Southern Water Tribe; Avatar Wan the first Avatar, who unknowingly disrupted the balance in the world. Wan was the first Avatar of the old cycle and was a native of the (future) Fire Nation.
    • Korra and Tenzin — Korra is the dark-skinned, hot-headed teenage girl who uses force rather than reason; Tenzin is a light-skinned, levelheaded man who tries to instill peaceful solutions than violence. Also, both are of Mixed Ancestry, Korra's is from her parents being from one of the two Water Tribes, while Tenzin's is from both parents being born into two different nations.
  • Forceful Kiss/"Shut Up" Kiss: Plants quite the good one on Mako. He reciprocates.
  • Fountain of Youth: She becomes temporarily de-aged during her journey through the Spirit World.
  • Four-Temperament Ensemble: Choleric — Brash, rude, stubborn, but also quite laid-back and confident (and a bit braggy).
  • Friendless Background: Growing up in an isolated compound populated strictly by teachers and guards, Korra's only friend before arriving in Republic City was her polar bear dog.
  • Friend to All Children: Shows natural skill for them given her interactions with Tenzin's children.
  • Friend to All Living Things: Being the Avatar, all animals have a liking towards her. She was the first person to ever tame a polar-bear dog. Pabu, also, quickly warmed up to her.
  • Gasshole: after taking one sip of an unspecified fizzy drink, she's able to belch with enough force to visibly blow back Bolin's hair and collar from a few feet away and horrify everyone else at the bar...before she learns how to airbend.
  • Genki Girl: If there's one quality she and Aang share, it's energy.
  • Genre Savvy: An off-hand remark by Mako in "The Sting" implies Korra was wise enough to not restore everybody's bending, leaving some triad members without their bending.
  • Gilded Cage: She lived in a White Lotus fortress and wanted for nothing. They provided her bending masters, supervised her training since she was young, and protected her from possible harm. However, they also restricted who could see her and for how long. She was watched even when she went on runs with Naga. In the end, she had no freedom.
  • A Girl And Her X: A Girl and Her Polar Bear Dog. Naga was her only friend prior to her journey as the Avatar.
  • Girl Next Door: She's a down-to-earth tomboy type and very athletic, but she's also a natural beauty. Though she prides herself on her bending ability and her role as the world's Avatar instead.
  • Glowing Eyes of Doom: In the Avatar State.
  • God in Human Form: As the Avatar, she can bend more than one element, making her a formidable opponent. The Avatar State boosts her bending to levels no mortal can match. Book 2 reveals that the Avatar is actually the spirit of Order, Raava, bonded to a human soul, which is where all that power comes from.
  • Goo Goo Godlike: Most Avatars don't discover their potential until they are told at age sixteen, and Aang learned four years early only because the Fire Nation posed that grave a threat at the time. Korra had discovered her ability to bend three elements with no formal training at four years old and was immediately flaunting her Avatar-ness.
  • Good Is Not Soft: Unlike Aang, Korra doesn't shy away from violence, is willing to attack defenseless opponents, and has outright threatened to murder people several times. At the end of Book 2, she has the distinction of being the first hero in the Avatarverse to deliberately kill her opponent, even if she regretted it coming to that.
  • Green-Eyed Monster: Toward Asami at first.
  • Half-Human Hybrid: She (like all Avatars) is a human mutated by fusing with the light spirit Raava, which is why she can bend all four elements. Even when separated from Raava, she retains her bending powers.
  • Hard Work Hardly Works: Averted. While Korra is quite talented, she has also been shown regularly practicing on her own.
  • He Is Not My Boyfriend: With Bolin during their first meeting and later she catapults Jinora and Ikki for guessing she likes Mako.
  • Healing Hands: Katara taught her to use Waterbender healing.
  • Held Gaze: The series ends with Korra and Asami looking lovingly into each other's eyes which represents the beginning of their romantic relationship.
  • The Heroine: She is the Avatar and main character.
  • Hero on Hiatus: She gets sidelined at the end of Book 3 from the heavy toll the metal poisoning has taken on her body. In the meantime, Tenzin promises that the new Air Nation will follow her example and strive to maintain balance wherever they go. It takes two years for her to physically recover, and even then she doesn't return because she's lost access to the Avatar State, which results in her disappearing on a quest to reconnect with Raava. Eventually, she returns to position as the Avatar to defeat Kuvira.
  • Hero with Bad Publicity: After the Book 2 finale, her approval rating drops because she can't deal with the spirit vine infestation. After rescuing the airbenders from the Earth Queen, she and her friends have a bounty placed on their heads.
    • In the three-year Time Skip, however, Republic City learned to live with its vine problem and began to coexist more peacefully with the Spirits. They began to recognize her as the hero she is, and erected a statue in her honor which placed in Republic City Park which they also renamed after her.
  • Heroes Love Dogs: As she wasn't able to leave the South Pole, Naga was her only close friend.
    Mako: Your best friend is a... polar bear dog. Somehow that makes perfect sense.
  • Heroic BSOD: Once a Season.
    • In the finale of Book 1, after Amon took her bending away. According to Aang, it was what finally allowed her to unlock her spiritual side.
    • In the finale of Book 2, when the spirit of light, Raava, is taken from her and destroyed, making her the last Avatar. Korra managed to get her back, though, as Raava cannot truly die.
    • In the finale of Book 3, the trauma of nearly dying, hallucinations caused by a potent poison, and a slow recovery leave her emotionally drained, barely having the will to smile. It takes most of Book 4 for her to fully recover from that one.
  • Heroic Build: Korra's quite powerfully built, much like her father.
  • Heroic Resolve:
    • Korra, after being stripped of her other stable elements, finally unlocked her airbending when she witnessed Amon about to take Mako's bending and manages to defeat Amon.
    • In the Book 2 finale, after being severed from Raava, she harnesses the cosmic energy of the universe to project herself as a giant spirit who can battle Unalaq and Vaatu combined.
    • During Book 4, Korra travels in the world, so she can recover which partly works.
  • Hidden Buxom: To an extent. She already has Boobs of Steel, but on the one occasion she is seen out of her athletic martial arts outfit, and in a formal evening gown, her bust is shown as much larger than normal, suggesting her normal outfit is designed to compress her chest for practical reasons. So she stands as a already busty character who is actually hiding a much larger bust.
  • Honor Before Reason: Despite being terrified of Amon and being coerced into joining a task force, she goes on a raid rather than go back on her word. Later, she challenges Amon to with a one-on-one duel, which ends badly when Amon ambushes her with dozens of chi-blockers instead of arriving alone.
  • Holding Hands: Book Four ends with Korra and Asami holding hands as they begin their vacation in the Spirit World.
  • Hot-Blooded: This is likely why she took to firebending so well, despite being a native waterbender.
  • Humble Hero: Eventually grows into this trope throughout the course of the series. After witnessing Wan's story of how he became the first Avatar, Korra becomes more humble and mature. This line in the Grand Finale sums it up.
    Tenzin: Korra you've managed to transform the world more in a few years then most Avatar's did in their lifetimes.
    Korra: But I feel like I've only just begun. There's so much more I want to learn and do.
  • I Have Your Wife: An interesting variation: Korra and the airbenders take Bataar Jr. hostage and use the threat of keeping him from Kuvira for the rest of his life as leverage to convince him to talk her down, all while trying to play the trope straight against Kuvira. In the case of Bataar, it works, who ends up breaking and submitting to Korra's demands. Kuvira, however, isn't so sentimental.
  • I'll Kill You!: Twice with the judge in "Civil Wars, Part 2". And given how she behaved with Tarrlok, there's no reason to believe she wasn't serious about the threat. Done again later with the Red Lotus; since she thought they killed her father, she really meant it.
  • I Just Want to Be Badass: Notable in that she already is badass; she's simply desperate to get others (especially Tenzin) to respect her. A recurring theme throughout the series is Korra's belief/fear that nobody takes her seriously.
  • I'm Not Afraid of You: An attitude she needs to adopt in the Spirit World, otherwise, being the Avatar, her negative emotions can cause its environment and inhabitants to become dark versions.
  • Important Hair Cut: She got one between Books 3 and 4. This is supposed to signify that she has changed dramatically (and also indicate a Time Skip).
  • I Need to Go Iron My Dog: She has already proven to be horrible when it comes to excuses. Her explanation for leaving in episode 7 takes the cake, though.
    Korra: I'm supposed to air sit, I mean baby-bend, I- I mean, babysit the Airbending kids!
  • Inferiority Superiority Complex: She usually acts very cocky and self confident, but she later begins to show a great deal of insecurity about her skills and fear to her enemies.
    • In particular her greatest fear seems to be losing her identity as the Avatar, or simply not being needed as one anymore. Being the Avatar is everything to Korra, and even after a lot of trials where she learned her value is independent of that role, it remains something she greatly fears losing.
  • Innocently Insensitive: Part of her spiritual weakness is that she's almost completely oblivious to other people's feelings, most obviously in episode five where she goes on a date with Bolin, then forces a kiss on Mako the very next day. She doesn't really get that this is a problem until she sees Bolin's reaction.
  • Instant Expert:
    • Korra was able to bend fire, water and earth without any training at a very young age. Airbending, on the other hand, came especially hard to her.
    • In Book 2, Korra manages to duplicate Unalaq's spirit-calming waterbending style after seeing him do it only a couple times. However, while she can copy the style at first, it takes her several tries to get it to work properly.
    • She also picks up metalbending extremely quickly in Book 3 and can go toe-to-toe with Suyin's kids.
    • In book four she learns to detect the energy of different people and "see" them through spirit vines from Toph, and all it took was a single try. While still unsure about what her limits are, Korra quickly proves she can even use the ability without directly touching a spirit vine (though its likely she does need them to be nearby).
  • In-Universe Catharsis: In the finale of Book 1, this finally helps her unlock the Avatar state.
  • Irony: She originally disliked Asami and thought of her as being a prissy, rich girl and considered her a romantic rival for Mako's affection. Eventually, she becomes friends with Asami, spends more time with her than her other friends, and develops romantic feelings for her. Eventually, they become lovers at the end of the series.
  • I Want My Beloved to Be Happy: She lets Mako be with his girlfriend Asami, partly because Asami needs his support. Considering her character, this is actually a pretty big deal.
  • I Work Alone: Korra has this attitude in the episode "When Extremes Meet" when refusing to rejoin Tarrlok:
    Korra: Well, I got news for you. You need me, but I don't need you. I'm the Avatar.
    • Subverted in general, however. While Korra wanted to fight the Equalists on her own terms, she still worried that she would go about being a hero alone. She eventually puts together her own team.
    • Comes back in "Peacekeepers" with Korra deciding that she doesn't need Mako's help on how to deal with her situation after he ratted her out. Granted though, she was too emotionally driven to see that Mako was only trying to make sure she doesn't make a mistake with disastrous consequences. However, Korra feels like the "help" Mako is giving her is betraying her family.
  • Jack of All Stats: Much like Aang, she can use all four elements but doesn't know the more advanced sub-skills like lightning or bloodbending, though she can use water-based healing. She picks up Unalaq's spirit pacification technique in Book 2, and Suyin teaches her metalbending in Book 3, though she is still an amateur at the latter.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: She is immature, a bit arrogant, sometimes a bit of a jerk, not above using her powers for pranks and not unappreciating attention... but if people's lives are on the line, she will throw away everything to save them.
  • Jumped at the Call: In stark contrast to her predecessor. Deconstructed, as it's this attitude that serves as the root of her emotional problems. Korra defines herself as the Avatar, even to the detriment of herself as a person, and the villains of the first three books have all sought to eliminate the Avatar as a concept, rather than personally targeting her. The idea of failing in that duty does a number on her self-esteem.
    • By the end of the series, Korra has regained her self-esteem and is a mature, confident young woman who is ready and willing to embrace her role as the Avatar.
  • Kung-Fu Kid: Korra was waterbending, earthbending, and firebending when she was just a little girl, way ahead of when she should have been able to.
  • The Lad-ette: Loves fighting and engages in burping contests with gusto.
  • Lame Comeback: Becoming a pattern with her. "You're oppressing yourself!" most notably.
  • Laser-Guided Amnesia: After being eaten by a spirit and washing up on an island. She goes into a deep meditative trance and connects with the first Avatar, Wan, which fixes it...mostly.
  • The Leader: Korra is the leader of Team Avatar. However, she doesn't always listen to others when they disagree with her notions. Over time, she learns that being a good leader means knowing when to sometimes follow.
  • Leeroy Jenkins: Zig-zagged. Korra has a tendency to dip into this, though her friends help keep it in check. Most of the time.
  • Legacy Character: As the latest Avatar, Tenzin refers to her as Aang's legacy.
  • Letting Her Hair Down: In two different flavors.
    • She wears her hair down for formal occasions, such as Tarrlok's party in "The Voice in the Night" and Jinora's master airbender ceremony in "Venom of the Red Lotus". Since she's cut her hair short in Book 4, she instead puts it up for formal occasions.
    • She also gets her ponytail knocked loose, resulting in an involuntary version of this trope. The first is in "Harmonic Convergence", where she's flung from Oogi's back. She spends the rest of the finale with her hair down. The second is in the Book 3 season finale, where she loses the ponytail along with her shoes, skirt, and armband when the Red Lotus chain her up in preparation to poison her.
  • Light 'em Up: She learns how to infuse water with light energy, which pacifies spirits.
  • Light Is Good: Is fused to the spirit of light and peace, Raava.
    • One fan noticed how her blue and white color scheme correlates to Raava, and contrast's Asami's Dark Is Not Evil look, which matches Vaatu's color scheme. His comments about them needing each other to have balance seems especially Hilarious in Hindsight after Book 4: Balance, ended with them as an Official Couple.
  • Lightning Bruiser: Now that Korra is getting the hang of airbending, it has given her unprecedented evasive skills. She still can hit like a freight train, though.
  • Like Parent Like Child: As a warrior, Tonraq was brash and hotheaded, relying on his physical strength to protect the tribe, and was never particularly connected to the spiritual world, much like his daughter in her performance of her Avatar duties.
  • Living Emotional Crutch: It is heavily implied that, at the end of the series, Korra has become this for Asami. After her father's Heroic Sacrifice in stopping Kuvira's giant mech from destroying Republic City, Asami mentions to Korra at a wedding that she couldn't have handled losing her father and Korra in the same day. From this scene it is implicated that Korra is Asami's main reason for living after the loss of her family. Although, their relationship in no way is portrayed as unhealthy as Korra is more than happy to be there for Asami - especially after all of the care, kindness, and warmth Asami showed her while she was recovering from her poisoning, PTSD, and depression.
  • Living MacGuffin: In Books 2 and 3. In Book 2, Unalaq needs her to open the spirit portals, and then has to destroy Raava within her. In Book 3, the Red Lotus needs her so they can force her into the Avatar State then kill her, thereby eliminating the Avatar forever (at least for the next 10,000 years) and allowing anarchy to triumph.
  • Little Miss Badass: She could bend water, earth, and fire by the age of four.
    "I'm the Avatar! You gotta deal with it!"
  • Love at First Sight: Korra fell in love with Mako the moment she saw him which eventually gets deconstructed when their jobs and temperaments cause their official break-up in Book 2.
  • Lower-Class Lout: Her cousins look down on Korra as a rube, despite being the Avatar, due to her being from the Southern Water Tribe. After the apocalyptic battle against Vaatu, she and her cousins are now square.
  • Making a Splash/An Ice Person: Her native element.
  • Master of the Mixed Message: In "The Spirit of Competition", she agrees to go on a date with Bolin, and then forces a kiss on Mako the very next day. Justified due to her lack of social skills.
  • The McCoy: To Mako's Spock and Bolin and Asami's Kirk. She's the Leeroy Jenkins and uses brute force to get her way.
  • Meaningful Name: When anglicized, Greek "Kore" reforms as "Cora", with both names meaning "maiden". Kore is also another name for Persephone, Greek goddess of the underworld, who is described by Homer as a "formidable and powerful young queen". The last meaning makes sense given how Korra being a powerful bender and the Avatar which can be just as equal or higher than a queen.
  • The Medic: Katara taught her how to utilize the healing properties of water.
    Korra: Relax, I'm a healer. I learned from Katara, the best there is!
  • Messianic Archetype: Subverted in Book 2. Instead of being like the Christian Messiah, Korra instead follows in the footsteps of Gautama Buddha. Like the Buddha, Korra was raised in seclusion. Both their fathers wanted to shelter them from the outside world. Both dive straight into trying to solve the ills of the world once they discover it, but only to limited success. Both eventually achieve enlightenment through meditation. In fact, Korra is able to tap into the cosmic energy of the universe while meditating under the Tree of Time in much the same way the Buddha achieved enlightenment while meditating under the Bodhi tree.
  • Mighty Glacier: Compared to the pro-benders, Korra comes off as quite slow, favoring strength over speed and usually blocking attacks with all three elements. Tenzin's training is helping to counteract that weakness, though. She becomes a Lightning Bruiser once she unlocks her airbending.
  • Misery Builds Character: Korra mentions to Tenzin that the suffering she went through after being poisoned by Zaheer helped her to become more compassionate to other people including her enemies. This is in line with one of the core tenants of Buddhism, knowing compassion through suffering, and is also a Call Back to a similar speech that Avatar Yangchen gave to Aang in the first series which stated that being born human, and thus making mistakes and suffering, allow Avatar's the ability to relate to other people around the world, in sadness, anger, joy and happiness.
  • Mixed Ancestry: Her mother is a native to the Southern Water Tribe, but her father is an immigrant from the Northern Water Tribe. Even though they were both officially one nation before the end of the Civil War, the show treats both tribes as distinct nationalities, as shown by the make-up of Republic City's council.
  • Mundane Utility:
    • She uses the Avatar state to beat Tenzin's kids in an air scooter race. Tenzin is not amused with her using it as a toy.
    • She uses her bending to play with Naga, first by using her airbending to throw a ball great distances and later raising floor tiles with earthbending akin to having a dog chasing a laser pointer.
  • Naïve Newcomer: At first, she was surprised to find that not everyone in Republic City was rich. A cheerful old hobo corrects her.
  • Neck Lift: As also demonstrated with Effortless Amazonian Lift, those muscles aren't just for show. In one instance, she hoists the Equalist protester in the park right off his feet.
  • Nice Girl: Fully becomes this after going through a few Break the Haughty moments leading to her showing compassion to her enemies.
  • Nice Job Breaking It, Hero: Trusting Unalaq in Book 2 ultimately caused a huge amount of problems that Korra could have easily avoided.
  • The Nicknamer: "Pretty boy", "Mr. Heartbreaker", "Mr. Hat trick", "City boy", "Cool guy", "Team Captain"... Mako seems to be the prime victim of these, as he owns the last four.
  • Nobody Calls Me Chicken: Prone to it. Tarrlok gets her to join his task force by having a reporter suggest that she's afraid of Amon.
  • No Social Skills: Being raised by the Order of the White Lotus, and with her spiritual nature rather stunted, Korra is often completely unable to read social cues. This leads to lame comebacks and her trampling people's feelings by accident.
  • Not Afraid of You Anymore: Korra has tried this twice, once when daring Amon to fight her and again when confronting Zaheer in prison. Both antagonists are more than happy to demonstrate that it does not work.
  • Not a Morning Person: States that the morning is "evil". As she is a native Waterbender, she grew up in the south pole, where both nights and days may last for many months at a time; and gets an energy boost from nighttime. Also justified by the fact that she's still in her teens; an age group that typically does not do well in the mornings.
  • Not Good with People: Nearly a perfect example of the more primal type 2 (adept at hunting for food, managed to tame an enormous wild animal at a young age, with a loose regard for rules), except that the reason she is bad with people is because she was isolated from them. While she is clearly lonely without human peers and makes an effort to socialize, she still seems more comfortable around Naga and Pabu.
  • Not Helping Your Case: Korra stumbles into this repeatedly.
    • In "Welcome to Republic City" when she discovers and tries to argue against an Equalist protestor decrying benders as an oppressive establishment, he easily manipulates her confrontational attitude to make her look like the bad guy in front of a large audience of listeners.
    • Later in the same episode, she's incredulous when police insist she be arrested for causing property damage during her well-meant Curb-Stomp Battle of a trio of gangsters. Instead of coming along quietly to explain her presumption of Hero Insurance, she flees the police, fighting as she bolts, and forcing them to use an airship to bring her in, which earns the enmity of Chief Beifong.
    • Matters worsen in "The Revelation" when, desperate to find a friend kidnapped by Equalists, she shakes down the same protestor for information in public, smashing his megaphone, flipping his table and hoisting him by the shirt, and must again flee the police when he wails (quite rightly) that he's being oppressed.
  • Not So Different: What brings her and Mako together (at first) is that, at their core, they have similar personalities: they're both really driven by competition, have strong feelings of truth and justice, are protective of their families, are ultra-stubborn and extremely determined.
    • In the finale, she explicitly says this of herself and Kuvira, and Kuvira realizing this is true is part of the reason why she ultimately agrees to surrender.
  • Not Wearing Tights: Korra essentially takes on a superhero role in Republic City, but has no secret identity. She even announces her arrival and status as the Avatar at a press conference.
  • Official Couple: With Mako after the finale of Book 1, until they broke up in Book 2.
    • In the series finale, it turns out the show's real OC is her and Asami.
  • One of the Boys: She likes to play sports alongside her guy-friends and best them in Burping Contests.
  • One of the Kids: Gets along well with Tenzin's children, having an air-scooter race with them at the beginning of Book 2, or asking Jinora and Ikki for advice on how to talk to Mako in Book 1.
  • One Woman Army: Well, it is part of her being the Avatar.
  • Opposites Attract:
    • She and Mako have wildly different backgrounds and ways of dealing with conflict. Which is probably why it doesn't work out. However, they learn to appreciate their differences, and it's those differences that make them stronger not as a couple, but as a team.
    • Later on, this and a good dose of Tomboy and Girly Girl applies to her and Asami. While they had similar privileged childhoods, one is a brash, tomboyish Avatar, and the other is an elegant, girly Badass Normal.
  • The Paragon: Her actions over the course of the series have inspired her teammates and other allies to follow her example of making the world a better place. This came across strongly by the end of Book 3: Korra is severely injured after fighting Zaheer, but Tenzin is inspired to have the new Air Nation follow her example.
  • Passionate Sports Girl: She loves pro-bending and always wanted to see a match since she was a child.
  • Persona Non Grata: Raiko banishes her from Republic City for not dealing with the spirit vines, even though she saved him and everyone else just weeks beforehand. After rescuing the new airbenders from the Earth Queen, she and her friends get bounties placed on their heads. Raiko reverses his decision after Korra beats the Red Lotus, and the Earth Queen is no longer around to pay the bounty.
  • Personality Powers: The cause of Korra's knack with three elements and issues with airbending in particular, as explained by her airbending teacher:
    Tenzin: Often the element that's most difficult for the Avatar to master is the one most opposite to the Avatar's personality. For Aang, it was earthbending.
    Korra: Yeah, well, I'm about as opposite an airbender as you can get.
  • Physical God: With emphasis on physical. Technically, she's a mortal combined with Raava's spirit carrying the spirits of her past lives.
  • Pint-Sized Powerhouse: As a tiny four-year-old child, she was already bending three elements.
  • Playing with Fire: Despite water being her native element, Korra seems to default to fire when frustrated.
  • Plucky Girl: Korra may have her Break the Haughty moments, but she still manages to get back up and fight.
  • Pragmatic Hero: When driven over the edge, she might get overly-aggressive. Case in point, "Civil Wars, Part 2" has her resorting to the Jack Bauer Interrogation Technique for information and going back on the promises she made to her parents as soon as it became too much for her to tolerate. She also has no problem using lethal force, unlike Aang.
  • Pride: Throughout the first season, she struggles with the many responsibilities that come with her being the Avatar, especially at points when her overconfidence and fear get the best of her. In the book 1 finale, her pride is what allows Amon to capture her and remove her bending. Korra's pride also gets in the way of her asking for and accepting help from others, especially in season 4, while she is attempting to recover from mercury poisoning and PTSD.
  • Protagonist Title/Title Character: The Legend of Korra
  • Pure Energy/Soul Power: Like Aang before her, she learns Energybending at the end of Book 1. At the end of Book 2, she is able to project herself as a massive spirit to fight Unalaq and Vaatu.
    • In the Grand Finale, she uses said Energybending to stop a blast from Kuvira's spirit cannon...Up to Eleven in that she's blocking the combined power of the entire spirit wilds in Republic City, the result of which obliterates downtown and tears open a new spirit portal. It goes to show just how far she's come since struggling with learning airbending early on to being able to manipulate such a devastating amount of spirit energy at once.
  • Rage Against the Mentor: She cuts ties with Tenzin in Book 2 for two reasons: she doesn't think he can teach her how to deal with the spirit crisis, and she just learned that he was partly responsible for putting her in the compound. She pulls this on Unalaq three episodes later when she discovers that he conspired to get her father banished from the North, and then put together a Kangaroo Court to get him jailed for life. She makes amends with Tenzin afterwards.
  • Rapunzel Hair: Before her Important Haircut, Korra's hair reached to her back.
  • "The Reason You Suck" Speech: Gives quite an epic one to Unalaq on his backstabbing ways. She even calls him out for setting Tonraq up to get exiled and trying to get her parents in prison. She tops it off by saying that he's mad at Tonraq for being the father of the Avatar.
  • Red Oni, Blue Oni: The brash, rough-and-rumble red to Mako's stoic and Asami's calm blue.
  • Reincarnation: Of the spirit of light and peace, and most recently Aang.
  • Romantic Two-Girl Friendship: Develops this relationship with Asami during Book 3 and spends more time hanging out with Asami than other members of Team Avatar. This eventually leads to Korra developing actual romantic feelings for Asami and becoming an Official Couple with her during the series finale.
  • Rookie Red Ranger: As the Avatar, she is looked at as the defacto leader when it comes to her friends and protecting Republic City. That said, it is clear early on she doesn't have any experience in leading and it is Mako who leads the Fire Ferrets.
  • Sacrificed Basic Skill for Awesome Training: The Order of the White Lotus, on Aang's instruction, protected her while bringing in teachers to nurture her Avatar abilities. Consequently, Korra has poor social skills but is an extremely powerful bender.
  • Save the Villain: As much as Korra hates the Earth Queen, she still tries to warn her about the threat of the Red Lotus. However, her captors don't believe her, and in the process of trying to escape, Zaheer ends up assassinating the Earth Queen when he feels working with her no longer serves a purpose.
    • In Book 4, Korra protects Kuvira from her own spirit weapon blast, the act of which creates a new spirit portal right in the heart of Republic City. She later talks Kuvira into surrendering herself to the custody of the United Republic.
  • Savvy Guy, Energetic Girl: The loud, full-of-energy Energetic Girl to Mako's cool-under-fire Savvy Guy.
  • Screw the Rules, I Have Supernatural Powers!: A rare heroic example, though she is still willing to do it if it overlaps with Screw the Rules, I'm Doing What's Right. She is the Avatar, after all. This is evident in episode 8, where Korra attempts to intimidate Tarrlok into releasing her friends. This is actually supposed to be the point of the Avatar, as demonstrated by Kyoshi and Roku, but doesn't work so well in a modern setting.
  • Second Love: For Asami.
  • She Cleans Up Nicely: In "The Voice in the Night", tomboy Korra wears a dress with her hair down. No one comments on it in the show, but she does manage to pull it off quite nicely.
  • She Is All Grown Up: A platonic variation. Korra gets this reaction from Tenzin in "Welcome to Republic City", when he and his family show up at the South Pole.
  • She Who Fights Monsters: Came within spitting distance during Book 2. After her father was arrested on charges of conspiring to kill Unalaq and sentenced to life in prison, Korra arbitrarily decided the judge was corrupt and chased him down after the trial, threatening to have Naga crush his skull if he didn't tell her what she wanted to know. In fact, this was exactly the type of behavior Mako wanted to prevent.
  • Shipper on Deck:
    • Apparently, Korra pairs Kai and Jinora together, saying to the latter she knows they have a "connection".
    • She also seems to like the idea of Bolin and Opal together.
  • Single Woman Seeks Good Man: Korra starts to go this route after a disastrous relationship with Mako, which included his habit of cheating and lying on her and Asami when he was with one of them. Except for the man part, she ends up with Asami—someone sweet, loyal, who was there for her at her weakest moment.
  • Skirt over Slacks: A variation. She wears a Showgirl Skirt-like fur-trimmed pelt over her pants.
  • Sleep Cute: With Mako in "The Revelation". Cue awkwardness and blush.
  • Sleeves Are for Wimps: She rarely wears sleeves, with the exception of formal occasions. She even tries to roll up her airbender uniform's sleeves. Tenzin does not approve and slides them back down.
  • Smug Super: Downplayed. Korra is inclined to brag and gloat, and doesn't hesitate to use her status as the Avatar to intimidate others if necessary. It isn't appreciated by the authorities, and Korra isn't as quick to do so in later seasons.
  • Spanner in the Works: To Kuvira's plans who initially dismisses Korra as obsolete. Despite losing to Kuvira during their first fight, Korra manages to become a thorn in Kuvira's side. She manages to prevent her forces from kidnapping Prince Wu, captured Bataar Jr before he can get President Raiko to surrender Republic City, takes up a leadership position to combat Kuvira's forces, and she personally manages to best her in combat during their second fight. Eventually, Korra manages to convince Kuvira to surrender. Not bad for someone that Kuvira referred to as obsolete.
  • Spirited Competitor: She picks fights for no reason, whereas Aang was a Martial Pacifist.
  • Start My Own: Forms her own team after disagreeing with Tarrlok's methods, which almost immediately is branded "New Team Avatar".
  • Super Mode: The Avatar State.
  • Superpower Lottery: She's the Avatar. It's in the job description.
  • Swallowed Whole: During her battle with Desna and Eska, a dark spirit shows up to swallow her. This ends up wiping out her memory and putting the Avatar spirit itself in danger.
  • Sympathy for the Devil: She states that Amon and Tarrlok's backstory was one of the saddest stories she had ever heard.
    • At the end of Book 4, being able to empathize with Kuvira is a big part of how she's able to talk the Earth Emperor into surrendering and facing justice for her actions.
  • Talking the Monster to Death: Rather than fight further, she manages to talk Kuvira down after they are sucked into the spirit world.
  • Taught by Experience: Korra seems to cop up to this since her arrival in Republic City. On her own, she learns to adapt to new situations when dealing with enemies, exhibiting a level of creativity and improvisation. When Amon removes Korra's bending, Korra finally gains the ability to airbend, even though she hadn't completed her training.
  • Teens Are Short: Averted, Word of God has stated she's above-average for a woman at 5'7". But people often get this impression of her because her father towers over her (because he towers over everybody), and both of her love interests are One Head Taller: Mako is 6'2", and Asami is estimated at around 5'10", not counting the heels she often wears.
  • Tell Me How You Fight: Korra navigates an airbending training obstacle course with lots of energetic spinning.
  • Thou Shalt Not Kill: Averted. Unlike her predecessor, she is in fact willing to use lethal force, though usually only as a last resort (unless she's really pissed).
  • Tomboy and Girly Girl: Tomboy to Asami's Girly Girl.
  • Tomboy with a Girly Streak: She's loud, abrasive, and has no shame getting into burping contests with one of her best friends to name a few Tomboy elements. However whenever she puts on a nice dress for a formal party or ball she can look quite elegant and stunning. And since she never seems embarrassed by being seen in public in a dress she may just like it to.
  • Tomboyish Ponytail and Tomboyish Sidetails: So we're ruling out a girly girl, here. In one scene, we see a young male waterbender wearing the same style, so it could have been a masculine hairstyle.
  • Took a Level in Badass: Not that she wasn't plenty badass at the start, but Korra had trouble with connecting to the spiritual side of her Avatar powers making it very hard for her to master airbending. Come Book 4, Air is her second most used element and she was able to energybend the spirit vine cannon blast when it's powered by the entire Spirit Wilds, ripping a hole in reality and creating a new spirit portal.
  • Took a Level in Cheerfulness: Sure, she was always cheerful in Book 1, but was hit so badly in later books. After overcoming her PSTD, she becomes far more cheerful and hopeful for the future again. This partly leads to her and Asami becoming an Official Couple.
  • Took A Level In Idealism: Korra initially held the belief that any enemy that she faced could not be reasoned with and just needs to be taken down with force. By the series finale, Korra understands that defeating enemies can be solved by connecting with them.
  • Took a Level in Jerkass: For about the first half of Book 2, Korra grows progressively moodier and more violent, first due to increasing frustration with both Tenzin and her father, and then with the war between the Southern and Northern Water Tribes. She takes on a With Us or Against Us attitude, lashes out at anyone who disagrees with her slightly, and alienates people around her, to the point where Mako outright breaks up with her. Only after "Beginnings" does she soften up again and realize the error of her ways.
  • Took a Level in Kindness: Korra herself realizes in the finale that, after her experiences throughout the series, she is now more open to understanding others and their problems. This is put into practice when she defeats Kuvira not by punching her out, but by relating to her fear of losing control and convincing her to surrender.
  • Tranquil Fury: In "Civil Wars, Part 2", she manages to stay calm even though she was beyond pissed off that Unalaq manipulated her and essentially tried to use her dad as a hostage. Strangely enough, this ends up as even more terrifying than her Unstoppable Rage towards Tarrlok.
  • Trauma Conga Line: In the Book 3 finale. In order: watched her father (apparently) die, was kidnapped and poisoned by the Red Lotus, had to deal with the pressure of possibly being the last Avatar ever, nearly died, and wound up in a wheelchair with terrible depression after everything was said and done. To say it went poorly would be an understatement. She eventually becomes a Type A after she recovers as she herself states that after she finally accepted and moved on from what happened that she'll become stronger and her growth is shown in the series finale.
  • Troubled Fetal Position: Korra tends to do this whenever she's feeling down. For example, she does it in "When Extremes Meet" after Tarrlok mocks her for being a "half-baked Avatar in training".
  • True Companions: What she, her teammates, and Asami have become by episode 8.
  • Tykebomb: While her parents and Tenzin were more interested in keeping her safe than in using her for their own ends, their decision to have her raised in a secluded compound with no peers effectively turned her into a perfect weapon. Working through the consequences of that is the focus of her character arc. It was presumed that The Red Lotus tried to kidnap her in order to deliberately raise her into one of these, though Zaheer denies that motivation when Korra calls him on it. They actually intended to kill her, and nearly do so.
  • Unkempt Beauty: Korra's look is natural and she's stocky, but that hasn't stopped Mako and Bolin (and, eventually, Asami) from crushing on her. Even Tahno couldn't resist a cheap come on when he first saw her. Further emphasized in "Out of the Past", where despite being somewhat disheveled from Tarrlok kidnapping her and a narrow escape from Amon, her appearance is barely affected.
  • Unknown Rival: Asami is completely oblivious of Korra's feelings for Mako and jealousy towards her until "When Extremes Meet".
  • Unresolved Sexual Tension: With Mako during Book 1. Episode five took this and ran it Up to Eleven. Resolved in the Book 1 finale.
  • Unstoppable Rage:
    • In "When Extremes Meet". Look at Korra's picture above, and look at this.
    • Happens again in "Venom of the Red Lotus", when she enters the Avatar State involuntarily. Much like Aang, she becomes a force of nature, focused solely on killing Zaheer. Were it not for the large amount of poison she was given to make her this way, she almost certainly would have succeeded. She was tossing mountaintops at Zaheer.
  • Unwitting Instigator of Doom: In "Long Live The Queen", Korra refuses to allow herself be brought to the Earth Queen as a captive, accidentally crashing the airship which was bringing her to Ba Sing Se. In the process, the captain radios Ba Sing Se to inform them of her escape. The Red Lotus, having come to Ba Sing Se to get Korra for themselves, learn of her escape and decide to bring Korra to them instead. To this end, Zaheer kills the Earth Queen and tells the citizens of Ba Sing Se that they are free to do as they please, throwing the city into chaos, then gives a message to Mako and Bolin to deliver to Korra.
  • Unwitting Pawn: Korra seems to have a problem with playing into the hands of crafty waterbending chessmasters, and one Corrupt Corporate Executive from either Water Tribe region.
  • Uptown Girl: Korra, Avatar and (future) daughter of Southern Chief Tonraq, is a couple with Mako, a former Street Urchin turned professional Pro-Bender struggling for money to off-duty cop. However, due to personal reasons, they break up.
    • Played with, after becoming an Official Couple with Asami. While Korra is the Avatar (a position possibly higher than any Queen/King, or more accurately, outside of any social class), Asami is the head of Future Industries.
  • Violently Protective Girlfriend: Korra has a tendency to be this.
  • Walking the Earth: Tries this in order to reconnect with the Avatar State and get out of her funk.
  • Warrior Therapist: Not as much as Aang, but she shows signs of it in The Last Stand. Korra finally gets Kuvira to admit defeat and accept her the punishment for her crimes by relating to her, especially in their regards for feeling vulnerable.
  • We Help the Helpless: As the Avatar, is this a broad definition of Korra's purpose.
  • Welcome to the Big City: The criminals she encounters even ID her straight away as being "fresh off the boat."
  • What Does He See in Her?: A platonic example: Korra doesn't understand why Bolin would develop a crush on her cousin Eska, since she has always found Eska and her twin brother rather creepy.
  • What The Hell, Heroine?: Lays one on Lin for acting hostile towards Opal (who wanted to meet her aunt) and says that with that attitude, she'll end up being old and alone. Surprisingly, Korra's words actually strike a nerve, for Lin sheds some tears after being left alone.
  • Who Are You?: Asked this after learning of Wan's past. When she answered, she finally understood her purpose and duty.
  • Why Can't I Hate You?: Before getting to know Asami well, Korra sees her as a prissy rich girl mainly because of her jealousy of her relationship with Mako. After they start bonding in a race, Korra apologizes for having her pegged wrong. Ironically, the two eventually end up in a relationship with each other.
  • With Us or Against Us: She has this attitude in Book 2, interpreting anyone disagreeing with her as the enemy and anyone showing any degree of sympathy for them as taking their side and not hers. Highlighted in Book 4's Clip Show, which shows all the times she accused Mako of siding against her in rapid succession.
    • Thrown against her by the rest of the Southern Water Tribe when she tries to play peacemaker, since they're angry at the Northern Water Tribe for their dictatorial behaviour.
  • Woman Child: Played for Drama, unlike Bolin. She's immature and as of Book 2, feels like the people she's close to should be on her side. She grows out of it.
  • Worf Had the Flu: She's the Avatar; the strongest member of her team, able to bend all four elements with unrivaled power. As such, if Korra needs to lose, she'll usually be handicapped in some fashion, the most notable example involving almost getting killed in the Avatar state due to being poisoned with mercury and needing the help of her allies to win. Other examples include; dealing with unfamiliar or unblockable techniques (chi-blocking, bloodbending), new technology (Mini-Mecha, bomb-equipped biplanes), or just being outnumbered or attacked while her guard is down.
  • Working with the Ex: With Mako.
  • You Are Not Alone: In episode 8, when she cries about not being able to take the burden of saving the city alone, Mako, Bolin, and Asami come along and remind her that Aang was not alone and neither is Korra. They are there to help her save the city. She has to be reminded of this again after her long convalescence after nearly metaphysically dying at the hands of Zaheer and the Red Lotus in order to fully recover from the ordeal.
  • Your Cheating Heart: She kisses Mako when he's already dating Asami. While he committed the mistake of kissing back, albeit briefly, Korra did initiate the kiss, so both have their share of responsibility.
  • Your Mind Makes It Real: She hallucinates an image of herself in the Avatar state, but the hallucination attacks her and causes real injuries, even when it's not superimposed on an actual person.
  • You're Nothing Without Your Phlebotinum: Korra seems to feel this way about Raava, believing that Raava is what made her and every Avatar a hero. After Vaatu rips Raava right out, Korra despaired that she's powerless to stop him without her power. Tenzin later reminds her that Wan became a legend not because of Raava's power, but because of who he was.
  • You Didn't Ask:
    Bolin: Why didn't you warn me your cousin has the power to reach into my heart and crush my soul with her bare hands?
    Korra: Uh... because I thought it was pretty obvious?

    Asami Sato 
"It's all right. People usually assume that I'm daddy's helpless little girl, but I can handle myself."

Asami Sato

Voiced by Seychelle Gabriel

A young non-bender and the pampered daughter of wealthy industrial mogul Hiroshi Sato. Despite being a delicate looking beauty, she can look after herself. She was trained in self-defense since she was little, is an avid fan of pro-bending and an excellent automobile driver.
  • The Ace: Asami is a beauty, rich, owns her own company, an expert martial artist, a highly skilled engineer, and can drive anything.
  • Ace Pilot: Her father did invent the things, after all. She conducts a bombing raid against Unalaq's defenses unescorted through heavy anti-aircraft bombardment.
  • Action Girl: She can handle herself in a fight, including against the Lieutenant of the Equalists.
  • All Loving Heroine: Asami is one of the most forgiving, kind-hearted individuals in the series. She doesn't have one mean bone in her body.
  • Aloof Dark-Haired Girl: While not exactly aloof, she is very graceful and mature and has long black hair. She is also as tall as her father, only a few inches shorter than Mako and was shown to be noticeably taller than Korra.
  • Amicable Exes: With Mako. They still care about each other despite how messed up their relationship became. In Book 2, they even seem to have gotten past their problems altogether and still make an awesome team when they're helping Korra.
  • Apologetic Attacker: To her father, after he tried to get her to join the Equalists. Less so in their rematch, where they fought with mecha-tanks and he tried to kill her.
  • Arms Dealer: In "Peacekeepers", Varrick suggests she sell her company's mecha-tanks to the Southern Water Tribe, which she agrees to as a means of both saving her company and helping her friend.
  • Authority Equals Asskicking: In an indirect way, being both the head of Future Industries and a competent asskicker, though the two aren't really related.
  • Badass: Being the only non-bender of the new Team Avatar, she deserves this title. Even after three years out of actions, she's still very capable of kicking butt in Book 4, taking out one of Kuvira's assassins in "Reunion".
  • Badass Bookworm: Asami is both brilliantly intelligent and a formidable fighter.
  • Badass Driver: Whether it be Cool Car, Cool Plane, Cool Boat or even a Mini-Mecha.
  • Badass Bisexual: Word of God has confirmed her bisexuality.
  • Badass in a Nice Suit: Not the usual tuxedo or pant suit normally associated with this trope but for the majority of Book 4 she's seen in a very classy business woman's suit (as befitting someone who's become a captain of industry) and it doesn't seem to slow her down at all in kicking ass in the few fights she gets into during "Reunion".
  • Badass In Charge: Took over Future Industries by Book 2.
  • Badass in Distress: She has found herself in some sticky situations just like the other members — she was arrested by Tarrlok in "When Extremes Meet" and captured by Equalists along with Mako and Bolin in "Endgame". In "The Stakeout", she and Korra were captured by the Earth Queen's forces, though Asami engineered their escape by the start of the next episode.
  • Badass Normal: She was trained in self-defense since she was a child, and can beat up even the toughest Equalists, like the Lieutenant. During a fight with a motorcycle gang, Asami manages to time her jumps perfectly to disable and disarm her opponents.
  • Beauty Equals Goodness: In contrast to the plain looking, barrel-chested Hiroshi, Asami is extremely gorgeous and is a much better person.
  • Beauty Is Never Tarnished: While her appearance does get disheveled at times, somehow her makeup manages to remain mostly intact and not running all over the place. By the end of the series, it's almost become a Running Gag that no matter how bad the fight and no matter what the state everyone else is in, Asami's hair is always perfect.
  • Betty and Veronica:
    • The Betty to Korra's Veronica for Mako's Archie.
    • Also the Betty to Mako's Veronica for Korra's Archie.
  • Beware the Nice Ones:
    • Asami is genuinely one of the nicest people in the show, but when it comes to conflict and confrontation, she can be very cutthroat. She's capable of taking out Equalists, including the Lieutanant, as well as Northern Water Tribe guards, and was this close to killing her own father in a rage during their battle.
    • In "Beyond The Wilds", She made it clear to Varrick that she will make him pay if he ever betrays her again, complete with an arm twist and a Death Glare.
  • Big Damn Heroes: She rescues Tenzin from a dozen Equalists in "Turning the Tides". Her very first instance of badassery in "The Aftermath" may count as well, as stun-gunning her father and the Lieutanent created an opportunity for Korra and the others to escape.
  • The Big Girl: Shares the role with Bolin, in a way. Her close combat abilities and electric glove are much more effective on Equalist mooks than bending (she took the Lieutenant in three seconds), and she is definitely the most pragmatic in a fight barring Korra. She also drives the car.
  • Biker Babe: She likes riding one and ran into Mako on one.
  • Bi the Way: The show's final scene makes it about as clear as possible under Nick's S&P that she and Korra are involved. Not only does the end of the whole series center around the two of them, but they hold hands and look lovingly into each other's eyes as they head off to a private vacation in the Spirit World. The fact that the sky around them is the color of the bisexual pride flag helps, too. Later confirmed by the creators to be their intent.
  • Bonding Over Missing Parents: With Mako.
  • Brainy Brunette: She has her father's brains.
  • Break the Cutie: Of all the main characters, lots of things go south for her the most, and through no fault of her own. Her dad turns out to be evil. Her boyfriend ends up dating the Avatar. She loses her wealth and high social status. Her company is going under. And just when it looks like she can pull it back, Varrick tricked her into selling a controlling interest to him. Things look up for her in Book 3, though, as Varrick being exposed allowed her to regain her lost assets and restore the company, and she's worked past her relationship issues in the first two books. In the fourth book, she and her company are in the best shape since her father's outing as an Equalist, and she's decided to give her father a chance at making amends. Her father, however, pulls a Heroic Sacrifice, but she does get together with Korra in the end.
  • Broken Ace: She is beautiful, rich, smart and one of the characters that gets screwed over the most in the series.
  • Broken Bird: Her mother was killed by a firebender when was only 6. Her father turned out to be working for the Equalists, and later tried to kill Asami, his only daughter because she refused to join. He was later jailed for her crimes. The company Asami inherited was near bankrupt, and Varrick actually swindled her into selling him the majority of her company as a seemingly benevolent act. In the romantic department? Mako returned a kiss from Korra while still dating Asami, didn't tell her and refused to own up to it when confronted, and then broke up with Asami. Sometime in Book 2, Asami tries to start their relationship again, but when Korra gets amnesia and doesn't remember Mako had broken up with her, he chickens out and doesn't tell Korra. Thus, Mako breaks Asami's heart again. She gets by just fine in Book 3 and after the Time Skip. Then, her father and her begin to reconcile, but he pulls a Heroic Sacrifice to help defeat Kuvira. Asami confesses that if Korra died as well she would not have been able to handle it.
  • Calling the Old Man Out: In the Book 1 finale, her dad offers her another chance to join the Equalists. She refuses, before saying that his wife would have hated him for what he's become, and that hate has filled his heart.
  • Cannot Spit It Out: Subverted - it's not from lack of courage, but tact that she doesn’t outright tell Korra that she loves her, as she’s obviously not in the best physical or mental shape to reciprocate even though she likely already feels the same way at that point.
  • Car Fu: She even managed to take out two mechas at the same time by crashing the Korramobile into them.
  • Chekhov's Skill: In the start of season 2, Asami is introduced flying a plane. She flies another to carry Mako and Korra when they look for Unalaq's prison ship, and performs a bombing run on Unalaq's spirit portal encampment later in the season.
  • The Chick: Of the Krew: Sweet, The Captain's love interest and the Girly girl. In true Chick fashion she also ends up with The Hero, Korra.
  • Chickification: She gets reduced to a support role in Book 2, barring a few exceptions. Being the only non-bender in a conflict with spirits, this is understandable. She does get so show off her driving and flying skills, though.
    • She gets a much larger role and several fight scenes later on, in book 3.
  • Chronic Backstabbing Disorder: Inverted. Out of all the main characters, Asami has a case of Chronic Getting Backstabbed Disorder, as people she's been close to or have allied with end up betraying her in some shape or form. First, her father betrayed her by secretly joining the Equalists out of revenge, later for him to attempt to kill her. She accepts Varrick as a business partner, but he ends up defrauding her and tricking her into selling him controlling interest. On the relationship side, Mako ends up being insensitive towards her because he had more feelings for Korra during their relationship, which causes her to completely lose trust him for a time. After Mako breaks up with Korra and goes on one or two dates with Asami, Mako lets an amnesic Korra kiss him. While the second time with her was not a full relationship, Mako WAS insensitive towards Asami during her time of need.
  • Clingy Jealous Girl: Averted. When Mako starts to get uncomfortably close to Korra, she calls him out for it, and makes a point that she still likes Korra.
  • Closet Key: For Korra.
  • Combat Pragmatist: As The Team Normal, she can't win in a fair fight against any but the most incompetent benders, so she makes sure not to fight fair. Distractions and sneak attacks are particular favourites, and fight scenes involving her tend to be over in seconds as a result.
  • The Confidant: The only one of Korra's friends that she's willing to write back to and talk about her Heroic BSOD while recovering at the South Pole.
  • Cool Car: Owns a few and drives one for the team.
  • Crash-Into Hello: Due to a combination of jaywalking and speeding, Asami crashes into Mako with her moped.
  • Crazy-Prepared: Understated example, but "Civil Wars Part 2" shows Asami still has her electric glove, implying she always has it on hand.
    • In "Reunion," she pulls one out of her Satomobile's glovebox.
  • Cry Cute: She's cried in every season except "Changes" and it's always modest.
  • Cuddle Bug: Not as over-the-top as Bolin, but is as generous as money when it comes to at least hugs towards the rest of the Krew.
  • Cultured Badass: Asami is rich, has a big house, and loves fashion. She can also take down benders without help from bender friends.
  • Daddy's Girl: She appears to be very close to her father and immediately defends him when he's accused of being an Equalist. When the truth is revealed, she's clearly affected by his betrayal and cries a Single Tear when she takes him down in the Book 1 finale. In the fourth book, she gives him a chance to redeem himself, and it actually goes well… but he's killed in a Heroic Sacrifice while giving them a critical advantage against Kuvira. It rocks her to the core.
  • Daddy's Little Villain: Defies this trope in all flavors. Hiroshi's secret keeping coupled with being a high ranking Equalist who has the means to ruthlessly eliminate all benders have shattered any idealized image she had of him.
  • Dark Is Not Evil:
  • Dating What Daddy Hates: Not that she realized it at the time. One could only imagine what would have happened if Asami had started dating Korra in Book One rather than the Grand Finale in Book Four.
  • Deadpan Snarker: Rarely and only when she's understandably upset.
    Mako: I need some more hot water. Korra wants more tea.
    Asami: You're a firebender, boil it yourself.
  • Despair Event Horizon: Averted. In the Grand Finale, Asami admits to Korra that she didn't believe she could handle losing both Korra and her father on the same day. When it looked like Korra might have died from the poison from Zaheer or from the explosion caused by Kuvira's weapon, Asami appeared to be the most devastated in both instances. It is hard to imagine what would have happened to her if Korra did die in those instances.
  • The Driver: Whenever Team Avatar needs to go somewhere, she's the one in charge of transportation from start to finish. Considering her father invented quite a few of the things she's driving, it makes sense. But for some reason, they also expect her to be able to pilot a flying bison.
  • Drives Like Crazy: But is good enough to pull it off.
  • Dude Magnet: Mako instantly fell for her. Meelo referred to her as "beautiful woman". Wu can't stop hitting on her. It makes her ending up with the very much female Korra incredibly ironic.
  • Et Tu, Brute?: Her father loved her and truly believed helping Amon was the right action. He could not conceive his child would disagree.
    • Asami is on the receiving end of this with Varrick, as she trusted him to help her company by entering a partnership. However, he attempted to take it over by bankrupting her company and trying to trick her into handing it over. Well into Book 4 when they have to work together again, she does not trust nor forgive him despite his Heel-Face Turn. Asami holds his past crimes from Book 2 against him, proving just how badly his betrayal wounded her.
  • Even Girls Want Her: While she attracts the attention of a number of different men throughout the series, Korra eventually becomes attracted to her, and Asami reciprocates.
  • Fallen Princess: After attacking her dad and saving the proto form of the Krew, she leaves her mansion to live on Air Temple Island and fight the Equalists with the street rats. Because of her father's actions, in Book 2 onward she and her family become pariahs in the eyes of Republic City and her company is nearly bankrupt because no one will do business with them. However, by Book 3 she and her company's reputation problems have either been resolved or become irrelevant.
  • Fangirl: Of pro-bending.
  • Femme Fatale: Has some of the trademarks of being one - rich, sexy, risk-seeking, daughter of a shady corporate boss - in the first episode she appears, but subverts it early and turns out to be one of the nicest characters in the show.
  • Foil: She and Korra are foils to each other.
    • Asami and Korra — Asami is the polite, levelheaded Girly Girl, a nonbender (still Badass Normal), and is more of a well-rounded character; Korra is the brash, confrontational Tomboy, a powerful bender (Avatar, to be exact), and undergoes an enormous amount of Character Development.
  • Four-Temperament Ensemble: Phlegmatic, of the "calm and collected Lady of War" variety.
  • Gadgeteer Genius: Asami is a capable engineer, able to repair and construct vehicles with limited resources, such as when she improvised a makeshift sand-sailer using materials from a destroyed airship. She also designed the new wingsuits for the Air Nation. She's also got chops as a civil engineer, having done much work in integrating the spirit wilds throughout Republic City into a reconstructed infrastructure.
  • Genius Bruiser: While she is of The Big Girl variety in terms of being a capable fighter, she is also a great strategist: getting into Unalaq's heavily guarded fortress was her idea.
  • Girly Bruiser: She's always seen wearing perfect makeup, is extremely fashionable, and loves girly things like shopping. However, thinking that in her case "girly" means "weak" is probably the last mistake you'll ever make.
  • Green-Eyed Monster:
    • Has faint shades of this. Since learning about Korra's crush on Mako through the ever-talkative Ikki, Asami appears to at least be growing uncomfortable with the closeness of their relationship.
    • Becomes even moreso in the next episode when she questions Mako's intensity in finding Korra, discovering that he and Korra kissed, and giving displeased looks whenever she suspects there is something more to the two's relationship.
    • In "Turning the Tides", she confronts Mako about the kiss and tells him to own up to his actions. He doesn't take this well. In her defense, though, while Asami is annoyed at the Ship Tease between Korra and Mako, she admits that she still likes Korra — it's Mako she has a problem with. She also doesn't allow it to interfere with their mission.
    • In the Book 1 finale, this is apparently gone the moment Korra and Mako decide to face Amon instead of destroying the aircraft. The last talk between her and Mako all but states that they do care for each other, but they've assumed that after the whole mess the Love Triangle caused, their romantic relationship simply won't work.
    • Gone by Book 3; in fact, their shared experiences with Mako seems to help Asami and Korra bond.
  • Guile Heroine: Hiroshi discovered this the hard way.
  • Hair Flip: After taking off her helmet in "Voice in The Night", and again after the mishap with overloading poor Naga in "When Extremes Meet" (though in a more off-hand manner). This may become a running theme with her.
  • Heartbroken Badass: Her mother's dead, her father's an Equalist whom she personally ended up capturing, her boyfriend moved on to Korra, and her company is ruins. Naturally this becomes her subplot in Book 2, though it seems to have been resolved by Book 3.
  • Held Gaze: The series ends with Korra and Asami looking lovingly into each other's eyes which represents the two of them becoming an Official Couple.
  • Hello, Nurse!: Noted several times to be very attractive In-Universe. In contrast Korra is more likely to be noted for her strength and physique rather than her features.
  • Hero with Bad Publicity: Even though she defeated her father, Hiroshi's status as a high-ranking Equalist has shattered her family's reputation, and ever since that happened, Future Industries has lost a great deal of investors. The reputation problems are gone by Book 3, though; or at least they haven't been brought up. However, she along with the rest of Team Avatar are wanted criminals in the Earth Kingdom.
  • Hidden Depths:
    • Starts out as Mako's arm-candy and a source of jealousy for Korra, both shows off her combat skills in "The Aftermath". Not to mention her mad driving skills.
    • She's also one of the smartest people in the setting and at least as smart as Varrick.
    • That, and for a teenage girl in a Love Triangle, she has shown a far more mature behavior than expected. One would have expected to go Clingy Jealous Girl on Korra for Mako, but she defies the trope and directly goes to Mako instead, even making a point on refusing to hate Korra.
  • Holding Hands: Book Four ends with Asami holding Korra's hand as they begin their vacation in the Spirit World which also marks the beginning of their romantic relationship.
  • Honest Corporate Executive: Has taken over Future Industries as of Book 2.
  • Honey Trap: Uses her looks and flirts a bit with the guard in "Long Live The Queen" so he could chain her to the wall instead of the floor in order for her to free herself.
  • Humble Hero: With all her wealth and beauty, Asami isn't arrogant about it.
  • Hurting Hero: Asami spends the whole of Book 1 doing the right thing and fighting the good fight. As a result she ends up losing all ties to her life before. By the end she is clearly heart broken by it all, but is still admirably resolute in her choices. By Book 3 she's worked past it.
  • I Am Not My Father: Her mother was murdered by benders, but while this drove her father crazy, she understands that not all benders are like that. Like Zuko, she ultimately decides that her father is beyond redemption and needs to be stopped.
  • Idiot Ball: Despite her own skills, every successful thing she does in Book 2 is due to Mako, Varrick, or Bolin; Asami on her own did very little right on her own. Granted, she was on the verge of bankruptcy, but she was too desperate to even think about whether her allies are truly allies. This is very glaring, even though it has been established that Asami is far from stupid; this is evident especially when Mako tells her that Varrick was betraying them from the start. It's not until Mako is framed by Varrick that she even considers he might have been telling the truth.
  • I Have No Son: Played straight and inverted. She and her father mutually disown each other. After seeing how far her father would go for revenge, and more, it became clear to her that Hiroshi is no longer the father she loves. Hiroshi's hatred of benders drives him to hate anyone who associates with them, even his own daughter. In the fourth book, she decides to try making amends with her father, and while they do reconcile, he gives up his life to save Asami from Kuvira, leaving her without a father again.
  • Ink-Suit Actor: Not in the negative sense. Even though Asami was designed long before Seychelle Gabriel was cast, character and VA look remarkably similar.
  • Irony: She starts off unknowingly part of a rivalry for Mako's affections with Korra. At the end of the series, Korra and her eventually become lovers instead.
  • The Kirk: Also shares this role with Bolin. To Mako's Spock and Korra's McCoy. Asami will often suggest a decision that isn't too "standstill" or too irrational.
  • Lady of War: Although Asami has an air of fragility around her, she's a very elegant fighter and talented martial artist, using many fluid motions and acrobatics in battle to take down enemies.
  • Last Girl Wins: A variation. She's the first girl her age Korra meets, but the last of her potential love interests, and the one she's in a relationship with in the end.
  • Like Parent Like Child: Humorously, Asami and Hiroshi are both Combat Pragmatists in their own ways.
  • Living Emotional Crutch: Janet Varney (voice of Korra), heavily implies here that Asami is this for Korra.
    "Korra realized that [Asami] was the person she missed, and she was the person that Korra felt she was most understood by, and that she wanted to reach out to and feel close to even though they were so far away."
  • Lonely Rich Kid: Downplayed, but despite her being as even nicer than she's rich, she's never seen with actual friend, only employees and businessmen she patrons to, in other words, people reliant on her money as well, which also could explain how quickly she bonds to Mako and the rest of the team.
  • Long Hair Is Feminine: She has the longest hair of Team Korra and is the most feminine of the lot.
  • Lots of Luggage: She takes a large amount of luggage when she moves to Air Temple Island. Mako states it could have been worse.
  • Mad Scientist's Beautiful Daughter: Though her father doesn't seem mad when we first meet him.
  • Makeup Is Evil: Subverted, as part of her Sheep in Sheep's Clothing, in Book 1.
  • Meaningful Name: Asami's name is Japanese for "morning beauty" and/or "linen beauty", and Asami's a real beauty. Her last name, "Sato", is Japanese for "sugar", a clear indication of her being a Spoiled Sweet Nice Girl.
  • Missing Mom: Murdered by Agni Kai triad firebenders when she was younger.
  • Morality Pet: In a twisted way, Asami still manages to be this to her father. She was pretty sure he'd be reluctant to kill her because she, being his only family left, was the last piece of his conscience. Unfortunately subverted during their final confrontation, because Hiroshi already jumped off the slippery slope, and Asami learned the hard way he was beyond reason.
    • It turns out in Season 4 that she has become one again.
  • Muggle: So far, the only non-bender on Team Korra. Doesn't stop her from being a badass fighter.
  • Muggle Best Friend: To Korra.
  • Nice Girl: Belying her traditionally sinister appearance, Asami is an absolute sweetheart and perhaps the kindest character on the show.
  • Non-Idle Rich: She doesn't let the fact she is one of the richest teens in town stop her from test driving her father's vehicles, not just the race cars but forklifts too, and living up life. In Book 2, she heads up Future Industries, but somehow still has plenty of time for adventures.
  • Number Two: To Korra, becoming her go-to girl and nominal second-in-command, especially in Book 3.
  • Obviously Evil: She's the rival to the hero's love interest, daughter of a villain, has a dark color scheme, and is overall drawn as a very "too pretty to be not evil" kind of beautiful (she especially bears resemblance to Lust of Fullmetal Alchemist)... but she's one of the kindest, most forgiving characters on the show. Word of God is that she was going to be some sort of spy for the Equalists, but they changed their minds pretty early in development. The design stuck, though.
  • Official Couple:
    • She seems to be in one with Mako throughout Book 1, but she turns out to be a Romantic False Lead and he starts dating Korra instead. They do have another brief romantic encounter with a few dates in Book 2 after he and Korra break up, but it doesn't go anywhere.
    • In the series finale, it turns out the show's real OC is her and Korra.
  • Ojou: She's a commoner, but as her dad is the richest man in Republic City, she's still treated like a princess. After her dad was outed as an Equalist however, she lost all that. After recuperating the family company, she got it back, and it took years to recover.
  • Old Flame: She and Mako have but a brief romantic encounter in "The Guide," but events (namely Mako going to prison until he was proven innocent, and then Korra forgetting that he broke up with her) spoil that. Regardless, this encounter never really went anywhere.
  • One Head Taller: Averted between her and Mako, she's as tall as he is. Played straight between her and Korra though.
  • Opposites Attract: This, and a good dose of Tomboy and Girly Girl, applies to her and Korra. While they had similar privileged childhoods, one is an elegant, girly Badass Normal, and the other is a brash, tomboyish Avatar.
  • Out of Focus: Poor Asami tends to get this the most out of all of the main characters, not only does she tend to be the character that disappears the most between episodes, she also tends to have the least number of sub plots per season.
  • Parental Abandonment: Her mother's dead and her father is in jail, not to mention disowned by her for his Equalist ties. Her father is killed in the finale just after making amends with her.
  • Parental Betrayal: She finds out that her father, Hiroshi Sato, has been supplying the Equalists with weapons and technology. Her response? Willingly accepts the electrical glove that Hiroshi offers... and then promptly shocks him.
  • The Pirates Who Don't Do Anything: Zigzagged. Asami may be head of a huge company, but she's hardly shown actually running the business. However, trying to save her company from bankruptcy was a plot point in some episodes, showing she's serious about her position. Regardless, most of her time was spent going on adventures with the Avatar, even if she does use Future Industries' resources for Team Avatar's benefit.
  • Plucky Girl:
    • As the series progresses, Asami loses or sacrifices everything she has. Her home, her wealth, her high social status, her father, and her boyfriend. Despite having every reason to quit and little to gain by going on she never stops fighting.
    • Her own goal from the beginning is to be her own person rather than just "Sato Jr", and would go as far as to prove not only that she is not Daddy's helpless girl, but also that she's not him and can be a better person than him.
  • Power Fist: Uses an Equalist stun glove as a primary weapon, and has created her own slimmed-down version by book 4.
  • Proper Lady: She has shades of this.
  • Pyrrhic Victory: Victory against her father and the Equalists came at great cost for her. She lost her family, her wealth, and worst of all, she lives with the fact that her father's actions have brought shame and disgrace to her family's honor and reputation. At no point in Book 2 do any of these losses seem recoverable, though by Book 3 she appears to have gotten at least the wealth back. By Book 4, Ms. Sato and Future Industries have been heavily involved in reconstruction after the Unavaatu attack, and President Raiko is seen at a press event standing next to her, so it's safe to say her reputation has recovered from being just the daughter of a jailed malcontent.
  • Rapunzel Hair: Asami's hair reaches to her waist.
  • Raven Hair, Ivory Skin: Like most people of the fire nation she has dark hair and pale skin. She's also stunningly beautiful, causing Mako to fall for her hard the first time he sees her.
  • Rebellious Rebel: Rebels against the Equalists by stun gunning her father, the Evil Genius who made the stun gun in the first place.
  • Red Oni, Blue Oni: The calm, elegant blue to Korra's brash, rough-and-rumble red.
  • Redemption Rejection: Inverted. Rather, she is softly given the offer by her father to rejoin him and be a family with her once again, but of course, she doesn't buy it and refuses to be a part of his evil.
  • Red Herring Mole: In the first season. Her character design was left completely unchanged from her initial envisioning as an Equalist spy, and seemed so Obviously Evil that, combined with her convenient meeting of Mako and position as Korra's main romantic rival, many (incorrectly) assumed she was up to no good.
  • Renaissance Woman: An extremely skilled Martial Artist, a Badass Driver, capable of using anything with the ability to steer, and a capable Engineer. She is a Ace Pilot capable of pulling off bombing and strafing runs on her own. In the three year timeskip she worked on the infrastructure of Republic City, building roads and parks, and designed the new airbender outfits.
  • Riches to Rags: She loses all her money once Hiroshi is revealed as an Equalist and later thrown in jail. She fights her way back up to Riches in Book 3 and by book 4 has a massive contract for rebuilding Republic City.
  • Romantic False Lead: To Mako. Despite a few dates in Book 2, it ultimately stays ended by Book 3.
    • One could argue that Mako was this to her and to Korra after the Grand Finale.
  • Romantic Two-Girl Friendship: Develops this with Korra during Book 3 and spends a majority of her screentime being by Korra's side. This eventually leads to Asami developing true romantic feelings for Korra and the two of them becoming an Official Couple at the end of the series.
  • Satellite Character: During Book 2.
    • She's also quite noticeably the only member of the Krew to not get a spotlight on her development over the series during the Clip Show "Remembrances," though you can definitely make a good argument that this is only because Korra, Mako, and Bolin all simply caught up to where she was all along.
  • Science Hero: Of the technology/engineering variety.
  • Second Love: For Korra.
  • Shock and Awe: While she can't lightningbend, she has an Equalist glove that allows her to shock her opponents.
  • Sheep in Sheep's Clothing: In Book 1. Many fans expected that due to her appearance and convenient meeting of Mako, she'd turn out to be an Equalist spy. She wasn't.
  • She-Fu: Most evident in "Turning The Tides", "The Earth Queen", and "Venom Of The Red Lotus" - her fighting style incorporates a lot of acrobatics.
  • Sickeningly Sweethearts: With Mako, at first.
  • Silk Hiding Steel: She may seem like a proper lady, but like Toph, has a badass fighting side that helps make her a formidable fighter.
  • Single Woman Seeks Good Man: When Asami was dating Mako she explicitly told him, he made her feel safe. She was quite disappointed when Mako kissed Korra and kept it a secret.
    • Inverted. Asami, a woman, falls in love with Korra, another woman. The person who has constantly shown Asami she is brave, caring, and selfless individual.
  • Sixth Ranger: Turning the Fire Ferrets Power Trio into the Team Avatar Four-Temperament Ensemble.
  • Sixth Ranger Traitor: She was obviously built up to be this, and eventually joined her father for about two seconds before she Defied it with a passion, shocking her own father and saving the group.
  • The Smart Guy: She has developed a keen eye on technology workmanship, being able to discern high-quality products from subpar ones, as evidenced when she criticized Cabbage Corp's airships for utilizing lighter materials, possibly sacrificing passenger safety. Asami is a practical thinker and a capable engineer, able to repair and construct vehicles with limited resources, such as when she improvised a makeshift sand-sailer using materials from a destroyed airship.
  • Smart People Play Chess: She plays Pai Sho and wipes the floor with Bolin several times over.
  • Sole Survivor: As of the finale, she is the last surviving member of the Sato family, her mother killed by Firebenders years ago, and her father getting killed by Kuvira.
  • Speech Impediment: Slight, but her VA's has a slight lisp noticeable during the letter-reading scene of “Korra Alone” and when she comforts Korra at the end of “Venom of the Red Lotus.”
  • Spirited Young Lady: She's proper and gentle as a Proper Lady, and an expert driver and martial artist.
  • Spoiled Sweet:
    • Spoiled: Daughter and only child of the richest man in the City, is a regular at at least one posh restaraunt, has wait staff at her father's mansion, gets to race cars on the company test track, and can pull the Daddy's Girl act on her father to get him to do/approve of things (even after she's done it).
    • Sweet: She offered Mako a more appropriate outfit during their date, she convinced her father to sponsor the Fire Ferrets, and she offered Mako and Bolin lodging after the Arena gets trashed from the Equalist attack. Subverted when she's involved in a competition or conflict: She's downright cutthroat in such situations. She (proverbially) sucker-punched her own father! She is definitely a girl with strong morals (unlike her father), if a bit naive at times, but she is still a Sato.
  • Static Character: Much like Toph in the first series Asami's overall personality doesn't change much over the course of the show (best shown in the episode "Remembrances" where she is the only member of Team Avatar to not get a moment to reflect on their Character Development over time). And, much like Toph from the original series, this isn't a bad thing since she's such a well Rounded Character already that she doesn't really need much development.
  • Static Stun Gun: She uses an Equalist taser glove in combat, which works great against benders and non-benders alike.
  • Statuesque Stunner: Already pretty tall in Books 1-3, by Book 4 she is the same height as Mako. This makes her one of the tallest women in either series - the tallest apart from P'Li and Avatar Kyoshi.
  • Stepford Smiler: At the start of Book 2, she had signs of this over the future of her company. In front of her employees, she is confident and smiling. When she walks away alone, her true face shows her worry over the matter.
  • The Strategist: The chase scene in "When Extremes Meet" shows her making a lot of great tactics and calling them out to the benders, such as making ramps, being able to take advantage of the enemy's smoke cloud to gain a sneak attack, and attacking Equalists during moments of supposed advantage.
  • Strong Family Resemblance: A picture in episode 10 makes it clear Asami received her looks from her mother. Asami would probably look identical to her without makeup.
  • Sunk Cost Fallacy: She lost and sacrificed so much to do the right thing, and hopes to get the best result out of it. She didn't even have the excuse of turning back before Varrick could buy controlling interest of Future Industries.
  • The Team Benefactor: While she's no slouch in a fight, Asami's wealth and technical expertise allows her to supply the team with cars, airships, and other advanced machines.
  • The Team Normal: Only non-bender on the current Team Avatar.
  • Teeth-Clenched Teamwork: With Mako during the episode "Turning The Tides".
    • To prepare for whatever Kuvira has in store for Republic City, Raiko has her team up with Varrick. She's understandably not pleased.
  • Third-Option Love Interest: To Korra.
  • Thousand-Yard Stare: When It looked like Korra might have died after the explosion caused by Kuvira's weapon. Luckily Korra survived, so she recovers.
  • Throw the Dog a Bone: After being put through the wringer in Books 1 and 2, Book 3 shows Asami having recovered some of her losses and emotionally over others. There are no subplots that involve her suffering, and "Long Live The Queen" even lets her show off by being the one to come up with plans to save the day. Season 4 also cuts her some slack; it sees her finally make up with her father before his Heroic Sacrifice, and ends with her dating Korra.
  • Tomboy and Girly Girl: Girly Girl to Korra's Tomboy. Though, as Korra lampshades, "girly" does not mean "prissy", "stuck-up", or "helpless".
  • Tomboy with a Girly Streak: In a different way then Korra since Asami is still definitely the more girly of the two. Asami is never seen without makeup on her face, always goes to battle without a single lock out of place and wears expensive looking gowns for any party she goes to. However she's also an incredibly capable engineer, is an expert martial artist, and spends almost all of her time wearing her (still admittedly fashionable) jumpsuit when kicking bad guy butt. In short it would probably be more correct to say she is a Girly Girl With a Tomboy Streak.
  • Took a Level in Badass: Not in a physical sense (since as a normal person physically she can't really get any stronger then she already is) but as an engineer and driver she gets much better over time. While she started out as the Chick/Big Guy of the team there was never any indication in Book 1 she had any real skills as an engineer or a pilot beyond what we saw. Come the next 3 books she shows the ability to drive any vehicle (including Oogi) becomes the Krew's engineering Smart Gal (able to MacGyver a sand sailor out of downed airship parts and help create the Hummingbird suits that were instrumental in Kuvira's defeat), rescues her company from the brink of collapse and becomes a Captain of Industry in Republic City for helping to fix its damaged infrastructure. Oh and she did all this over the course of three years.
  • Tranquil Fury: In "Turning The Tides" - she took down several Equalist fighters with stoicisim, but the shots before she crashed the Korramobile in a mecha and when she tased an Equalist handling Tenzin clearly exhibited her anger from her father and Mako.
  • Universal Driver's License: Roadsters, mopeds, racecars, Mecha-tanks, motorboats, aeroplanes, more than one model of airship... heck, even Tenzin's sky bison Oogie lets her take the reins.
  • Unwitting Pawn: Thoroughly played by Varrick, which costs her the controlling interest to Future Industries. Though in her defense, Varrick is playing everyone like fiddles.
  • Uptown Girl: A rich girl who has her eyes set on Street Urchin Mako. Fitting with the trope, Daddy does not approve, (but mostly because he's a bender) although he pretends to.
    • Played with, after becoming an Official Couple with Korra. Asami is the head of Future Industries, but Korra is the Avatar (making her on the same level as a Queen/King or higher).
  • Weak, but Skilled: By virtue of being a non-bender. Her other team members are a Physical God, a talented Firebender, and a powerful Earthbender. Asami finds her niche in the group with her driving skills, awesome martial arts ability, strategic thinking, vast material wealth, and ability to utilize the electric glove she took from the Equalists.
  • Wise Beyond Her Years: See Hidden Depths. She is surprisingly mature about handling a Love Triangle than most teenagers and is even taking up the task of running a business. Deep down inside though, she is still an insecure, scared little girl with the trauma of losing her family.
  • What the Hell, Hero?: She gives one to Mako regarding his supposed feelings with Korra.
  • Working with the Ex: With Mako.
  • Wrench Wench: In "Long Live the Queen", she repairs a crashed airship. When the airship crashes a second time and is damaged beyond repair, she assembles a sand skimmer out of its wreckage.
  • You Can't Go Home Again: From mid Book 1 to the end because her father is an Equalist and she must live on Air Temple Island. Despite regaining her fortunes, she still lives there.

    Bolin 
"Maybe I just can't turn my back on people when they're down!"

Bolin

Voiced by P.J. Byrne

The younger of two brothers from a mixed-ethnicity union. Part of a pro-bending team along with Korra and his older brother Mako. Being younger, Bolin is a lot more playful and relaxed than his brother, and just wants a good time. He wants to take more initiative and get more respect, but his immaturity and naturally laid-back nature makes this difficult.
  • The Ace: This trope is initially inverted for Bolin since while a Badass and skilled bender in his own right he was often Over Shadowed By Awesome when compared to everyone else in the Krew. This all changed after he mastered Lavabending and suddenly became second to Korra in terms of destructive power. Hell by the end of the series on could argue that he is now, as an earthbender, equal to Toph in terms of raw power.
  • Acquired Situational Narcissism: After Varrick makes him a mover star, Bolin lets it go to his head, though he gets better after Varrick is exposed as a traitor.
  • Adorkable: The primary source in the series.
  • Affectionate Nickname: Is given the pet name "Feeble Turtleduck" courtesy of Eska.
  • All-Loving Hero: Bolin is quick to forgive people who've done him wrong (i.e. Varrick). He can't bare to see another living thing, human or animal, be hurt. Resulting in his strong desire to do anything in his power to help.
  • All There in the Manual: His rank in Kuivra's army is Corporal according to the concept art but so far hasn't been stated on screen.
  • Always Second Best: When it comes to his brother Mako — in age and getting girls.
  • Amazon Chaser: Back when he had a crush on Korra.
    Bolin: You're the smartest, funniest, toughest, buffest, talented-est, incredible-est girl in the world!
    • He also starts a relationship Opal, who won't let him off easy when he makes a huge mistake. Before that, when Bolin approached her with his usual Casanova Wannabe routine, he compliments her airbending skills.
  • Amicable Exes: With Eska, if a bit awkward.
  • Audience Surrogate: He starts taking on the role in Book 2, with his prodding Mako to clean up his love life already, and goes even more into it in Book 3 with his reactions to Varrick and the Red Lotus.
  • Aww, Look! They Really Do Love Each Other: Despite a somewhat rocky start, at the end of Book 2 he and Eska do genuinely care for each other. A little.
  • The Baby Of The Bunch: Most childlike of the team. Mako is quick to admonish his little brother for his antics every now and then.
  • Badass: A bit goofy, but he definitely qualifies.
  • Badass Adorable: By being both a Lightning Bruiser and The Cutie.
  • Badass in a Nice Suit: Bolin foils a plot at a formal event in a nice Roaring Twenties-esque suit. Not before tearing the sleeves off first.
  • Badass Mustache: In a similar vein to Sokka's Wang Fire beard, Bolin has a fake handlebar mustache he puts on whenever he or the group puts on a show.
  • Bad Liar: He usually runs at his mouth, trying to cover one lie with a more exaggerated instance. It's a hint that Bolin wasn't acting when he gives his Anguished Declaration of Love.
  • Bad Powers, Good People: He learns lavabending, a strong contender for 'scariest, most devastating bending technique in the show'. It makes him no less goofy, fun-loving, or kind-hearted. Becomes even more pronounced after the Time Skip, where even though he is part of Kuvira's Earth Empire, he is the Token Good Teammate, joined so he could help the helpless and expresses reservations when Kuvira starts acting aggressive, all despite having the most destructive power out of all the group.
  • Bait and Switch: In Book 3, he reveals that he always wanted to learn metalbending but years of practice failed to produce any results. After several points where it seems like metalbending would be an important skill for him to finally pick up in a pinch, he instead learns lavabending.
  • Bash Brothers: With Mako. It's more common in Book 3, since the two are usually split up in the previous seasons.
  • Betty and Veronica: Bolin is the Betty to Mako's Veronica in a Sibling Triangle for Korra.
  • Beware the Nice Ones: Bolin is sweet, empathetic, and a hugger. However, he's a deadly bender when pushed, especially when Book 4 comes around.
  • Beware the Silly Ones: Bolin acts like a goofball, but when it comes to earthbending or lavabending, he's no joke, and can get downright deadly.
  • Big Brother Instinct: He gets very excited about having a little brother figure when Kai joins the group, and keeps sticking up for him no matter how clear it gets that the kid is up to no good.
  • Big Eater: Took out a loan against their winnings to do some impromptu grocery shopping. When given a look of chagrin by his brother, Bolin simply quips:
    Bolin: I'm a growing boy!
  • Big Fun: The burlier and more fun-loving sibling.
  • The Big Guy: Thematically. As the avatar, Korra has more raw power, but Bolin is still the most likely to use blunt force in a fight. Book 3 plays up his precise earthbending skills, however. And then there's his lavabending.
  • Big Ol' Eyebrows: They come from his father's side of the family, who all share them.
  • Birds of a Feather: The reason why he is interested in Korra, and later Opal.
  • A Boy and His X: A Boy and His Fire Ferret. This is the dynamic between him and Pabu.
  • Brains and Brawn: Provides the brawn when working with Varrick.
  • Breakout Character: Got little screentime or story in season one. Fast forward to season 4, where he's more important to the story than the other Krew aside from Korra, and received the same or more screentime as her.
  • Broken Ace: Bolin may not have had it as hard as Korra or Asami, but he's been through his own share of troubles. Bolin lost his parents to a firebending mugger (it's unknown if he was there with Mako), but it forced him to fend for himself, along with his brother, on the streets. As he grew up, Bolin gained a lot of insecurities whenever he compared himself to Mako-noted to be better at receiving more attention from the girls and being a better bender. He also thought of himself of a lesser earthbender because he could never metalbend. In the love department, Bolin always wanted to find that one girl, but never ad much luck (e.g., Korra, Eska, and Ginger.) He does finally find his true love in Opal, but their relationship is strained because of his alliance with Kuvira.
    • Bolin also suffers from his naive nature when he thinks someone is trying to help, but are just using him for their own selfish gain (e.g., Shady Slim, Varrick, and Kuvira) and have caused to put strain on his relationships with the people closest to him (e.g., Mako, Opal, etc.) It would be understandable if his idealism was shaken after moments like that.
  • Brutal Honesty: As for telling the truth, his mouth is as blunt as most Earthbenders can get. He does this twice in the first two episodes of season 2. The first time, it impresses Varrick, the second just causes awkward silence.
  • Butt Monkey: Especially in the Book 2 premiere, when he gets pushed around a lot. Also, he easily gets taken advantage of by Korra's cousins.
  • Calling the Old Man Out: Not his own father, but he does call out Hiroshi Sato for his treatment of Asami.
  • The Captain: Of the Fire Ferrets after Book 1. Mako and Korra have both quit.
  • Captain Obvious: He tends to point out things that are obvious to everyone else. It's usually Played for Laughs, but no one appreciates it.
  • Casanova Wannabe: Anytime he tries to get girls onscreen, it never ends well with him. He takes an interest in Korra in Book 1, but it was one-sided and then he saw Korra and Mako kiss. In Book 2, he tries to impress Eska, Korra's cousin, but her domineering attitude quickly alienated him. Ginger, the woman who plays his girlfriend on the big-screen, isn't too fond of him, either, though she warmed up after he saved the president. In Book 3, he initially tries to approach Opal Beifong in this fashion, but abandons it after she convinces him to be himself. In general, Bolin seems to do a lot better when he's not making an effort.
  • Cat Smile: Subtly, but it's there.
  • Character Development: It takes a while to kick in and is offscreen, but it does happen. Come Book 4, Bolin is less of the goofball we knew in the first three books. Now, he's more calm, mature, and has found his calling.
    • One big example of his growth is his relationship with Varrick. In Book 2, Bolin blindly followed and admired Varrick, despite the man's shadiness. However, in Book 4, while Bolin still listens to Varrick, it's only when the older man has a point or actually knows what he's doing, and is now able to call out Varrick for his crazy or selfish stunts.
    • Bolin also truly becomes an individual in Book 4, and not just one half of the Bending Brothers. Besides making his own decisions based on what he believes is right, his clothing also becomes very distinct from Mako's, sporting a brown leather jacket opposite Mako's plain bodyguard uniform, after both brothers having very similar costumes for the past three seasons.
    • In the romantic department, Bolin had a pretty narrow view on how to approach a girl he was interested in (e.g., he would act as the Casanova Wannabe). However, after he meets Opal, who made it clear she didn't like said approach, he quickly drops the act. They becomes an Official Couple in Book 4; they were having relationship troubles during the Book because of his involvement with Kuvira, he tells her he knows he can't win her forgiveness with romantic gestures, but he won't stop trying because he loves her.
  • Characterization Marches On: One of the original aspects of Bolin's character was that he was a successful ladies' man. Aside from Mako mentioning that Bolin often brings fangirls into the gym (and one of them yelling Bolin's name during a match) in their debut episode, this has been nowhere on display for most of the series, with most of his attempts at romance (be it with Korra, Eska, Ginger or Opal) being rather lame and giving the vibe of someone with little experience.
  • The Charmer: Said to always have a lady on his arm, as well as a habit of bringing "crazy fangirls" to the Fire Ferret's room before matches.
    • We get to see Bolin in his natural environment in Book 2 where he lives up to the trope.
  • Chekhov's Skill:
    • Those Nuktuk movers actually paid off when he had to get Eska to let him and Mako go and feigned an Anguished Declaration of Love about how he left her at the altar because he was afraid of his feelings, which resulted in her softening just enough to free them. Although he might not have been completely acting.
    • The precision Earthbending Bolin learned as a pro-bender came in handy for neutralizing P'Li's combustion bending, as well as allowing him to easily control a Deadly Disc made of lava with his lavabending.
  • Chick Magnet: Before a pro-bending match, one of said fans can be heard in the audience screaming "I love you, Bolin!" It was also mentioned that Korra wasn't the first girl he took backstage.
  • Chivalrous Pervert: Bolin really loves attention from the ladies, but deep down he wants just one girl to fall in love with.
  • Chromatic Arrangement: Green.
  • Chronic Hero Syndrome: Summed up in his line toward Mako in Republic City Hustle:
    Bolin: Maybe I just can't turn my back on people when they're down!
  • Comfort Food: The noodles from a restaurant that serves Water Tribe food. He overindulges once he sees Korra kissing his brother.
  • Comically Missing the Point: In the Book 2 premiere, he did this a lot. No one appreciates it, AT ALL. This is evident especially when he hears the story about Tonraq's banishment, pointing out that Tonraq was supposed to be chief, but instead, Unalaq became chief.
  • The Corruptible/Corrupt the Cutie: Though he didn't realize at first, thanks to Varrick's "help" his morals degraded quite a bit. He was shown to care more about hot girls and his movie star career than helping his brother. He at least learned his lesson, though, and in Book 3 rejected Varrick's love advice out of hand despite being otherwise friendly with him. It happens again in Book 4 with Kuvira, who manages to talk him into helping her even after she's taken taken over the Earth Kingdom and reformed it as the Earth Empire.
  • Crouching Moron, Hidden Badass: Was pegged right away as inheriting the "comic relief" role from Last Airbender's Sokka, and he's often the first character to take a fall or be comedically-injured. But the second pro-bending match in "The Spirit of Competition" demonstrates that Bolin can be just as badass as his teammates. Throughout the second and third seasons, Bolin shows many times that while he may be a complete goof, he is still a champion pro-bender and is just as competent in a fight as his brother. This is exemplified toward the end of season two when he and Mako put up a reasonably good fight against Unalaq and his children, who are by all accounts masters of bending. Later, in season three, he and Mako take a squad of Dai Lee agents to the cleaners. Bear in mind that these are benders who gave Aang and company a hard time (albeit in greater numbers), and who don't seem to have slacked off on their standards in the interim.
  • The Cuckoolander Was Right: In Book 3, Bolin tries to convince Mako to help the rest of the team find the new airbenders. He makes up a sob story about about how their grandmother (who they never met) could be in Ba Sing Se, and how sad she would be if Mako doesn't come. And then, in Ba Sing Se, Mako and Bolin stumble upon their long-lost relatives...including their grandmother. On the other hand, Bolin was always aware that Ba Sing Se was their father's birthplace, but he wasn't sure his family was still around and kicking.
  • Cuddle Bug: Bolin is the most "hugsy" of the group, sometime crossing over into being The Glomp.
  • The Cutie: Exhibits some shades of this. The fandom definitely sees him this way though.
  • Dark and Troubled Past: Mako didn't mention Bolin being present at the time of their parents' murder, and he has been sheltered by his brother, but it doesn't negate how hard it must have been for Bolin as well.
  • Deadly Disc: His pro-bending career gave him a lot of practice earthbending stone discs with startling accuracy. What pushes it into this trope in Book 4 is when he lavabends a stone disc into a Hot Blade and uses it as a Precision-Guided Boomerang.
  • Deadpan Snarker: In Kuvira's Gambit.
    Bolin: Oh, did I forget to mention it? NO, OF COURSE I DIDN'T KNOW!!!
  • Defector from Decadence: After discovering that Kuvira uses her subjects as slave labor and throws dissidents into re-education camps, he and Varrick jump ship, but get captured.
  • Delinquent Hair: Appears to sport a Ducktail hairstyle, which was popular with Real World greasers back in the 50's.
  • Determinator: To a degree. Continues to fight despite his injured shoulder, as noticed by Shiro Shinobi.
  • Die or Fly: As he, Mako, Asami, and Tenzin were trying to escape from the Northern Air Temple, they were all trapped in a tunnel while molten lava was closing in on them. Bolin then figures out lavabending at the last second and saves their lives.
  • Dishing Out Dirt: He's an earthbender.
  • Distressed Dude: He was kidnapped by Equalists in "The Revelation".
  • Dogged Nice Guy:
    • A bit towards Korra. He's got some interest in her, in that he looks forward to her coming to practices and makes a rather romantic gesture of giving her a rose and a small cake after she and Mako saved him from Amon, but Korra doesn't display much interest back. Granted, this wasn't the best time since she was facing major confidence issues because of Amon.
    • Later, he takes Korra out on a date, who mostly agrees to cheer herself up after being rejected by Mako, about two seconds before. After the date, Bolin brings her a bouquet of flowers only to be crushed by the sight of Korra kissing Mako.
  • Don't Explain the Joke: He frequently does this.
  • Dork Knight: An Adorkable cutie dedicated to helping people who need it.
  • Drowning My Sorrows: Well, a G Rated Version involving noodles after seeing Korra and Mako kiss.
  • Easily Forgiven: Korra and Mako welcome him back with open arms after turning on Kuvira, but this is averted with Opal, who is still angry with him and says that saving her family is the best way to redeem himself.
  • Elemental Eye Colors: An Earthbender with green eyes.
  • Eleventh Hour Superpower: Bolin spontaneously learns to magmabend in the Book 3 season finale.
  • Epic Fail: When he was given money to bribe someone to help Tonraq's trial, he instead bribed two random people, as opposed to the judge. This is lampshaded by Asami.
  • Establishing Character Moment: Bolin is first seen walking to the arena, before catching sight of Korra being grilled by Toza. He immediately slicks his hair back, and walks over and covers for her.
  • Fanboy: Toph is his greatest hero. And he's also speechless in front of Zuko.
  • Fatal Flaw: His trusting nature to others who seem like they like actually care for him gets him into serious moral troubles.
  • Foil: Acts as a foil to Mako.
    • Bolin and Mako — Bolin is the silly, cheerful, immature younger brother who is never afraid to cry, fanboy, or express whatever he's feeling; Mako is the serious, cynical, aloof older brother who has problems expressing his true feelings (i.e. the whole Love Triangle fiasco could've been avoided if he was more truthful). Mako ends up a Celibate Hero, while Bolin becomes an Official Couple with Opal.
  • The Fool: Although he does have bending and is far from incompetent, he's by far the most lackadaisical of the core heroes of Team Avatar, He certainly fits the characteristic of living on the edge, all the while having a cheerful (and seemingly naive) attitude, no matter how bad the situation gets.
  • Foolish Sibling, Responsible Sibling: The cheerful, silly one.
  • Forceful Kiss: Plants an unwanted one on Ginger while acting out a scene in a film.
  • Foreshadowing: "Man, good thing you're so good at breaking hearts, Korra better watch out." Yes, she should have.
  • Four-Temperament Ensemble: Sanguine- The most cheerful and forgiving of the gang, which also makes him the most gullible.
  • Fourth Date Marriage: Narrowly avoided one with Eska, but now, his fiancée is about to get him.
  • Friend to All Living Things: Bolin immediately rescued Pabu when he was about to fed to a carnivore. He also gets momentarily distracted in Book 3, when Meelo mentions baby Sky Bison.
  • The Glomp: Due to his overly-strong emotions, Bolin can cross into this.
  • Good Is Not Soft: Despite the ample notes of his kind and jovial behavior, Bolin is a very capable earthbender who can handle himself in many fights.
  • Green-Eyed Monster: A mild example. When he sees the extravagant gift basket Tarrlok sent her, he jumps at the chance to put the man who's been bothering Korra in his place. After Korra explains that the gifts are non-romantic, he seems relieved.
  • Handsome Lech: He's a skirt chaser, but he's implied to have not gotten so many Fangirls. Some girls have managed to fall for him with varying success and results, such as Eska, Ginger, Opal, etc.
  • The Heart: Of the four members of Team Korra, he has the biggest heart and most able at forgiving them when they screw-up. He doesn't even begrudge his brother or Korra after the day after he saw them kiss.
  • Hellbent For Leather: Wears a brown leather jacket during the latter half of Book 4.
  • Henpecked Husband: A boyfriend variant with Eska, though Eska wanted to make him this. In "Civil Wars, Part 1" he was first seen pulling Eska and Densa in a cart. Later when Eska wants to wed him and gives him a necklace, Korra notes that this tradition is usually performed by the other gender.
  • Heroes Want Redheads: Bolin started chasing after Ginger (who dyes her head red) when he became a Mover star. However, it was mostly out of physical attraction. By Book 3, he got over her.
  • Heroic Build: Best shown when playing bare-chested hero Nuktuk in Varrick's movers. He seems to have slimmed down a bit by Book 4, but is no less Badass for it.
  • Heroic Self-Deprecation: The reason behind Bolin's reluctance to train in metalbending is because he didn't believe that he was special enough to pick it up. He ends up mastering an even rarer form of earthbending, lavabending, instead.
  • Heterosexual Life-Partners: A sibling example, with Mako. They've always had each other backs and often give each other advice, be it with their bending or with the ladies.
  • Hidden Depths: Bolin has a strong business sense, as has been noted by both Asami and Varrick, and is a talented and charismatic public speaker.
  • Honest Advisor: This is how Bolin impresses Varrick, by innocently pointing out the industrialist has failed to levitate himself with his own mind. All of Varrick's hangers-on were indulging his delusion.
  • Hopeless Suitor: Bolin doesn't realize how badly Korra's crushing on his brother when he makes his own overtures.
  • Horrible Judge of Character:
    • Self-admitted in Book 2, as he failed to see how trying to court the female half of the Creepy Twins would go horribly wrong.
    • He stands by Varrick much longer than anyone else.
    • In Book 3, he keeps vouching for Kai even before Kai went through Character Development and he was planning on completely screwing over him and Mako (and even after he did screw them over repeatedly).
    • And again in Book 4, where he can't see that Kuvira's heading down an obviously dark path even though he's working for her. At least in this case, she's also very good at manipulating him.
  • Hypocritical Humor: "Some people just don't have respect for other people's property. Now let's steal this airship!"
  • The Idealist: Bolin is an idealist, always motivated by a strong desire to help people and make their lives better. When the Earth Kingdom fell into chaos, he joined Kuvira and her army, believing she wanted to help others as much as he did. As a result, his idealism and naiveté prevented him from second guessing the extreme lengths Kuvira would go to in order to achieve their goals, until they were pointed out to him.
  • Idiot Hero: Bolin is far from stupid, but his naivete and gullible nature has got him into trouble.
  • Improbable Aiming Skills: He hits P'Li in the center of her forehead with a peddle, in the middle of the night, from behind a barricade.
  • Inelegant Blubbering: Is prone to this in certain episodes.
  • In Love with Love: Bolin truly wants a real relationship, but has a lot of trouble finding one: Korra wasn't interested, Eska was abusive, and Ginger had to spell it out to him that they were only a couple in the movers.
  • In Touch with His Feminine Side: He isn't afraid to show emotion and enjoys makeovers.
  • Just a Kid: Dialogue seems to suggest Mako treats Bolin as this.
  • The Kirk: Also shares this role with Asami. To Mako's Spock and Korra's McCoy. He's not as stoic as Mako, but he's nowhere as impulsive as Korra.
  • The Knights Who Say Squee: He's quite a powerful Earthbender, but he holds Toph and Zuko in very high regard.
  • Ladykiller in Love:
    • Despite his status as The Charmer his interest in Korra is both strong and genuine as he describes her to Mako as his dream girl. And his dismay at seeing Korra and Mako kissing is strong enough to reduce the usually cheerful young man to an emotional wreck.
    • In Book 2, he starts pursuing a romance with Eska. He quickly regrets it. He breaks up with her by siding with Korra in a war against her father and running away on a really fast ship. However, he later admits that she simply came on too strong and he does care for her.
    • In Book 3, he is smitten by Opal Beifong, a recently empowered airbender and granddaughter of Toph Beifong. This relationship has better chances than the previous two since it's neither one-sided nor highly dysfunctional, and is still open by the end of the season. As of Book 4 and the series finale, Bolin is a Official Couple with Opal.
  • Lame Comeback: To Mako in episode 5. Though, he wasn't all there when he tried to make it.
    Mako: I told you dating a teammate was a bad idea!
    Bolin: You're a bad idea!
  • Lantern Jaw of Justice: Fitting his stout build, Bolin has a truly impressive jaw.
  • Let's Get Dangerous: Exactly what it says on the tin. He may be laidback, but when it's time to bend, it's serious business.
  • Leitmotif: A short bit of fanfare plays whenever he does (or is about to do) something heroic, like bombing the South Pole in "Harmonic Convergence", stunning P'Li in "The Terror Within", attempting to metalbend in "Long Live the Queen", discovering his ability to lavabend in "Enter the Void", battling Ghazan in "Venom of the Red Lotus", fighting the Earth Empire mechas in "Enemy at the Gates" and "Reunion", and attacking Kuvira's colossus in "Day of the Colossus".
  • Lightning Bruiser: Pro-bending emphasizes both power and speed. When giving pointers to Korra, he criticizes her conventional style as being powerful but leaving her open to attack, then demonstrates his own boxing-like style which allows him to attack quickly without sacrificing defense.
  • Living Emotional Crutch: To Mako, who explicitly stated to Korra in Book 1 that he wouldn't know what to do if something ever happened to his little brother.
  • Looking for Love in All the Wrong Places: Bolin has had a rough time with love from initially misreading Korra's friendship with him as romantic interest, to being emotionally abused by Eska, and then ends up planting an improv and unwanted Forceful Kiss on Ginger while acting out a scene in a film. It may just be his instinct to chase so many girls or Bolin has become desperate to get into any sort of relationship.
    • It's so bad that when Opal is obviously interested in him, he has to have it spelled out for him by Mako. And even then, he starts out approaching her as a Casanova Wannabe, turning her off until she tells him to just be himself.
  • Lovable Jock: He is a good hearted young man who cares about his teammates but will call them out when they aren't pulling their weight and screwing up the chances to win.
  • Love at First Sight:
    • His Establishing Character Moment no less. He starts hitting on Korra the moment he meets her, comes to her aid when she's about to be tossed out of the building by his landlord, and tells Mako that he's "got a good feeling about this one". In The Spirit of Competition he openly tells Korra he's liked her since he first met her.
    • In Book 2, he becomes interested in Eska from the moment he sees her, although he had trouble finding the difference between her and her twin brother.
    • Was on the receiving end of this from Opal in Book 3, but by this point he's so jaded by failed relationships that it takes Mako spelling it out for him to catch on.
  • Love Confession: Gives one to Opal in Book 4 after she chews him out for working for Kuvira, despite her warnings:
    "All right, listen. Before you go, I just want to tell you that I understand how you feel. I know there is nothing I could do or no big gesture that could make up for all my mistakes, but that doesn't mean I'm gonna stop trying to win you back because ... I love you."
  • Love Hurts:
    • He finds out Korra likes Mako the hard way. Seeing Korra and Mako kissing reduces him to an emotional wreck.
    • Then there is of course Eska, who was emotionally abusive towards him.
    • Opal ends up falling here in season 4. Bolin siding with Kuivra, someone Opal detests for betraying her mother and being a cruel dictator, puts a severe strain on their relationship. It eventually all but breaks and even after Bolin leaves Kuivra's army, it takes a while for her to forgive him.
  • Lust Object: He is a G-rated version of this trope to Eska, who seems to only seek him to possess him.
  • Magma Man: When trying to outrun a lava flow in "Enter the Void", he discovers the ability to lavabend.
  • Magnetic Hero: Due to his career as a Pro-Bender and being a natural public speaker. Deconstructed when Varrick decided to exploit this ability by casting Bolin as the star of his propaganda films, making him the poster boy of the Southern rebellion. Reconstructed after Bolin matures a lot by Book 4.
  • Man Child: While not exactly a man just yet (he's sixteen), he fits the bill. Due to Mako's nurture, Bolin is childish, trusts easily, wears his heart on his sleeve, and has been relying on someone else almost his entire life. But he's beginning to reach for independence from his brother. According to his voice actor, part of Bolin's character arc is him maturing and learning that not everything is as he thought it was.
  • Masculine Girl, Feminine Boy: The comical, dramatic feminine to Korra's and Eska's More Deadly Than The Male masculine.
  • Meaningful Background Event: He's first shown in-series in the background of an argument between Korra and Toza; at first he's just passing through, then double-takes at Korra, slicks back his hair, and struts forward to help her out.
  • Meaningful Name: According to San's letter to Yin, Bolin's name is written in Chinese as 愽林. The characters mean "forest", alluding to Bolin's earthbending abilities.
  • Men Don't Cry: Averted. His reaction when he sees Korra kissing Mako is to sob in the most overblown way imaginable and run away. And then when Mako tries to snap him out of it, he breaks into Inelegant Blubbering.
  • Mixed Ancestry: Along with Mako, half-Fire Nation, half-Earth Kingdom.
  • Morality Chain: If Bolin wasn't around, the chances that Mako would've been the decent guy he is now wouldn't have been so good.
  • Morality Pet: To Varrick in Book 4; Bolin acts as his conscience and Varrick genuinely likes and respects the young earthbender.
  • Motor Mouth: The most talkative of the group, especially when he reaches Adorkable levels.
  • Muscles Are Meaningful: Although that bulk isn't fat. Bolin's stockier frame is simply ripe with muscle.
  • My Master, Right or Wrong: Played with. Bolin clearly has some misgivings about Kuvira's decision to seize control of the Earth Kingdom/Empire, but he still sticks with her, at least for now. After learning the inner workings of her regime and realizing her true nature, he defects from her.
  • Nice Guy: As said with Lovable Jock and The Heart, he is an all around nice guy. As of Book 2 however, he Took a Level in Jerkass ever since Varrick made him a star, going as far as to force a kiss on Ginger when she was tied down and didn't want him. He quickly gets out of it, though.
  • Nice Job Breaking It, Hero: The biggest flaw Bolin has is his big mouth. If Bolin hadn't told his brother that he, Asami, Varrick and Korra were planning to go to General Iroh, the President would've been none the wiser. Once Korra was sold out to the President, it caused Korra and Mako to break up.
  • Not What I Signed On For: Bolin wanted joined Kuvira because he wanted to do what was right, and he let himself believe that they were making lives better, but they weren't. Bolin found out that Kuvira has people placed in slave camps after they pledge their loyalty to her.
  • Obliviously Evil: In season 4, he has no idea what Kuvira is really doing and just thinks she's helping people. He has no idea to the inner workings of her empire, including borderline slavery and "reeducation centers" which he thought were simply trade schools.
  • Odd Friendship: With Varrick, though Varrick turns out to be a Big Bad Friend.
  • Official Couple: In Book 4, Bolin is in a Long Distance Relationship with Opal, though her strained relations with Kuvira and Baatar Jr. are something of a sore spot between them.
  • Opposites Attract: With Eska in Book 2.
  • Parental Abandonment: After the death of their parents in a mugging, he and Mako were left to fend for themselves.
  • Plucky Comic Relief: Gets most of the jokes, yet still remains a likable and complex character. Also helps he is friends with Varrick, another source of comedy.
  • The Prankster: To Mako. Pabu is his partner in crime.
  • Punctuated Pounding: Against Hiroshi Sato in the finale of Book 1.
  • Real Men Wear Pink: Bolin is In Touch with His Feminine Side, uses acrobatic stunts, enjoys spas and/or makeovers, and has an In Love with Love attitude.
  • Renaissance Man: As goofy as he is, Bolin has an impressive and diverse skillset. By the end of the series, he is a championship level pro-bender, a respected actor, a veteran soldier, and the world's only surviving lavabender.
  • Romantic Runner-Up: He's very nice and funny, but Korra chooses his more handsome and skilled brother over him.
  • Runaway Groom: He skipped town before his wedding to Eska. He later admit he was just too nervous to marry her.
  • Sensitive Guy and Manly Man: The comical, In Love with Love Sensitive Guy to Mako's stoic, blunt Manly Man.
  • She-Fu: Unlike most earthbenders, Bolin does not rely on a stable stance and frequently incorporates acrobatic flourishes in his attacks. This may have been a habit carried over from his pro-bending days where success frequently meant being able to dodge and attack at the same time.
  • Shipper on Deck: For Kai and Jinora.
    Bolin: Whoa! Tenzin's not gonna be happy about this!
    Mako: Then don't tell him.
    Bolin: How can I not? It's too juicy!
    • In Book 4, he also supports Varrick and Zhu Li. So much so that he officiates their wedding.
  • Shy Finger Twiddling: Prone to this, when nervous. He does it when Korra initially does badly in her first match as a response to his brother's accusatory look, and again when menaced by Amon.
  • Sibling Rivalry: Bolin and Mako fell out with each other Book 2, that Bolin decided to move out on his own. They eventually patch things up.
  • Sibling Team: With Mako, either in pro-bending or in intense battles.
  • Sibling Triangle: Both he and Mako liked Korra at the beginning of season one. It came to its peek in "The Spirit of Competition" and to an end when Bolin realized that his romantic interest in Korra wasn't reciprocated.
  • Sibling Yin-Yang: Bolin is the easygoing, naive one of the two. Mako's serious, though not quite as downcast as his clone. Life in the streets toughened him up, and he feels responsible for both himself and his younger brother, being he's the only family he has left. They are a bit opposite in body builds as well: Mako is more wiry while Bolin is stocky.
  • Shockwave Stomp: Bolin demonstrates this in Book 4, bowling over a group of captors. And he wasn't trying to hurt them.
  • Sleeves Are for Wimps: He tears off the sleeves of his fancy suit before fighting a group of waterbenders trying to kidnap President Raiko and his wife.
  • Speaks Fluent Animal: Specifically, fire ferret. It's how he talks to Pabu.
  • Static Character: Like Toph before him, Bolin doesn't change much as a character throughout Book 1. He's grown considerably by Book 4, however.
  • Stepford Smiler: Implied, he claims that sometimes he cries himself to sleep. The fact he mentions it while on the subject of pro-bending indicates he didn't take losing so early (and easily) at the start of Book 2 well.
  • Stout Strength: He is on the bulkier side than his thinner teammates, but still shows good levels of strength.
  • Straight Man and Wise Guy: The goofy, silly Wise Guy to Mako's stoic, aloof Straight Man.
    • By Book 4, he's the serious, reasonable Straight Man to Varrick's eccentric, sarcastic Wise Guy.
  • Street Urchin: He used to be one with his brother.
  • Strong Family Resemblance: He shares nearly the same physique as his late father.
    • Although it's hard to see normally, since they use different hairstyles, color scheme and wear very different expression, Mako and Bolin do look quite alike, as seen when Bolin does an impression of his brother and becomes nearly identical.
  • Suddenly Fluent in Gibberish: He seems to be able to understand Pabu.
  • Technician vs. Performer: Along with Korra, is the Performer to Mako's Technician.
  • Token Good Teammate: His expressive nature and loyalty has made him unknowingly fill this role to Kuvira's Big Bad. He supports the Earth Empire purely because he wants to help people, but not for any sort of power lust. He realizes the truth in "Enemy at the Gates".
  • Took a Level in Badass: In "Enter the Void", just as he, Asami, Mako and Tenzin are about to be engulfed in Ghazan's lava, Bolin discovers his ability to lavabend. And it gets even better in Book 4, Bolin has spent nearly three years in Kuvira's army, his earthbending has improved drastically and he's nearly Ghazan's level when it comes to lavabending.
  • Took a Level in Jerkass: In Book 2, Varrick making him a mover star goes straight to his head, even to point he plants an unwanted kiss on Ginger and acts flippant towards Mako. He gets over it.
  • Took the Bad Film Seriously: Invoked Bolin seems to genuinely believe in the movers he's making, even when other people think they're hilarious. When Varrick is telling his Abridged Series-style recap mover of Bolin's life, he's the only one upset about how it doesn't make any sense.
  • Trademark Favorite Food: Dumplings according to Mako in "Revelations".
  • Turn the Other Cheek: Generally, Bolin is more forgiving of people, even if they wrong him or his friends in some shape or form:
    • Forgives Korra and Mako despite his heartbreak.
    • He still respects Varrick, despite finding out that Varrick betrayed his and his friends' trust.
    • He never let go of his feelings for Eska, in spite of her abuse.
    • Quick to forgive Kai and defend him after the Artful Dodger repeatedly lies to them.
  • Uncanny Family Resemblance: His cousin from Ba Sing Se looks a lot like him. In fact, many of his father's side of the family have similar snub noses and heavy eyebrows.
  • Vitriolic Best Buds: Develops this with Varrick in Book 4.
  • Why Do You Keep Changing Jobs?: Bolin's had quite the illustrious career: pro-bender, mover star, soldier, and finally, most bizarrely, marriage officiant.
    • And let's not forget his little side-jobs, as a street performer and a gangster too.
  • Wrestler in All of Us: Bolin also has some skill in wrestling and grappling, which he utilized during his one-on-one tiebreaker match with an experienced Black Quarry Boar-q-pine earthbending opponent.

    Mako 
"Don't worry about it, I'll figure something out. I always do."

Mako

Voiced by David Faustino

The elder of two brothers from a mixed-ethnicity union. With Korra and his younger brother Bolin, they form a pro-bending team. Having been a street rat after his parents' death, Mako took it upon himself to care for his brother, and would do anything for him. Around strangers he shows an icy, controlled personality, but around close friends and family can show a much sweeter side.
  • The Ace: He's handsome, a skilled probender, and someone you can depend on when things get tough.
  • Adorkable: Surprisingly, he has his moments, such as making a list of Bond One Liners for when he catches criminals.
  • All-Loving Hero: Mako grows into by Book 4, stating to Wu in "Remembrances" that he now dedicates his life to helping others just for the sake of doing so.
  • Aloof Big Brother: Mako in Book 2 has been distant and unconcerned with his brother's issues. He makes up for this in Book 3 by spending more time with his brother.
  • Always Someone Better: Bolin sees Mako as this, when it comes to bending or girls.
  • Amazon Chaser: Mako joins his brother in that account, mentioning that Korra's strong and a good athlete in the list of good qualities in their conversation of her being girlfriend material.
  • Amicable Exes: Sorta with his two ex-girlfriends. He and Asami still care about each other despite how messed up their relationship became. In Book 2, they even seem to have gotten past their problems altogether and still make an awesome team when they're helping Korra. Later, he and Korra come to this arrangement, after they break up for real. At the beginning of Book 3, while Mako is not negative towards Korra or Asami and they are still very friendly to him, he is a little awkward towards them, but they warm up as it goes on. In Book 4, he's a little annoyed to find out that the two are closer to each other than either are to him, but gets over it.
  • Anti-Hero: Going with his hard edge, Mako has a wrathful side to him as well, having the capacity to kill or harm anyone who wrongs his brother and friends. This was particularly evident when he threatened an Equalist by raising a flaming fist when seeking information regarding Korra's whereabouts.
  • Badass:
    • Moments after we meet him, he finds himself alone against a full team in a pro-bending match, takes said third round in an impressive show of skill, and wins it by himself when he knocks all three of his opponents into the water. In about the span of about a minute or so. Simply by tiring them out while he dodged everything they threw at him... in the third zone. "This Mako's got moxie!" indeed.
    • Redirecting lightning while being electrocuted and frying one of the platinum Mini Mechas by it in episode ten also counts.
    • He's also the first person to ever get the better of Amon, which Amon himself compliments. He did this by firing lightning while being bloodbended.
    • In the Book 3 finale he solos Ming Hua, and pretty much kills her with lightning despite being plonked right into underground pool of water. Special points should also go to the fact that he is the only person to take down a Red Lotus member by himself (every other member of the Red Lotus had to be taken out by at least two or more people).
    • He's able to fire off a sustained blast of lightning to overload The Colossus' energy reactor, when most firebenders would be able to fire very short bursts of lightning at best.
  • Badass Biker: In Book 2, being a motorcycle cop.
  • Badass Longcoat: Well, it's more of a tail coat, but creates the same effect.
  • Bash Brothers: With Bolin. It's more common in Book 3, since the two are usually split up in the previous seasons.
  • Battle Couple: The other half of it with Korra, at least until they broke up in "Peacekeepers".
  • Beleaguered Assistant: To Prince Wu of the Earth Kingdom in Book 4, as his personal bodyguard.
  • Belligerent Sexual Tension: He and Korra have a bit of this going on in the first half of Book 1, and it's particularly emphasized in "The Spirit of Competition". They later subvert it by admitting their feelings and stopping the arguing. Fully subverted in book 2 when their contrasting natures and constant arguing eventually lead to their break up.
  • Better as Friends: After ending his relationships with Asami and Korra he has assured both that he still cares for them and will always be there to help. Making him essentially the Big Brother to the whole team.
  • Berserk Button: Just try to hurt Korra in front of him. Or his brother, for that matter. He does fling one of Bolin's attackers across the screen, and gets much more aggressive when Bolin is electrocuted in the same episode.
  • Betty and Veronica:
    • He's the Archie conflicted between Asami and Korra, respectively.
    • He can also be seen as the Veronica to Bolin's Betty with Korra as Archie. Yes, two connected love triangles.
    • He finally ends up as the Veronica to Asami's Betty, with Korra as the Archie.
  • Big Brother Instinct: Regardless of his rough edges, Mako loves Bolin, and he's fiercely loyal and very protective of him. He willingly took (and presently still does take) most burdens and responsibilities of their living conditions.
    • There is a shade of deconstruction to this trope as it applies to Mako. He sheltered his brother from the harsh realities and darker nature of their environment, which led to Bolin's current naiveté and dependency.
    • Even after breaking up with them Mako is still incredibly protective of both Asami and Korra. This also extends to Wu who he treats with much the same exasperation and protective nature as he did Bolin.
  • Bond One-Liner: In Book 2, he keeps an entire list on hand to use when he captures criminals.
  • Bonding Over Missing Parents: With Asami.
  • The Bore: Something that becomes more apparent in the last two seasons. Mako is not very good at communicating with people in a lively manner, or keeping people's attention when he's asked to write a letter, act in a play or make a public announcement, often defaulting to emotionless, official expo-babble.
  • Broken Ace: While not as bad as Korra, Mako does have shades of this trope (mostly seen in the first book). His parents were murdered right in front of him as a boy which gave Mako a very cynical outlook on life, he spend the better part of his early life pickpocketing and stealing to keep Bolin and himself alive, has difficulty interacting with other people and admits that before meeting Korra he cared more about making money then helping other people. He eventually grows out of this though, becoming more self-sacrificing and selfless to other people besides his brother, thanks to Korra's example (although he's still pretty awkward around people).
  • Broke Your Arm Punching Out Cthulhu: In the Series Finale Mako shoots a continuous beam of lightning into the spirit vine core of Kuvira's Colossus in order to make it unstable and cause it to explode. While this does work the resulting feedback from the core burns Mako's arm up to his elbow and a bolt of energy knocks him unconscious (which would have killed him if Bolin hadn't returned in time to save him from the explosion). When we see him again at Varrick's party his arm is in a sling so it's unknown exactly who much damage the attack did.
  • Brutal Honesty: Mako will tell his opinion regardless of what others might be feeling. This trait comes in handy in Book 4 when he's bodyguarding Wu; his harsh, but truthful honesty over the young prince's ineptitude and him not being ready to be King, actually allowed Wu to admit those flaws and work his way to being a good king.
  • Butt Monkey: At the start of Book 3, he's noticeably been on the receiving end of several pranks and misfortunes including but not limited to: Having a door airbended into his face, being made to act "evil" for a show and getting tossed around by Korra mid-performance, having to sleep in a trash pile (along with Bolin) and being the subject of a lot of teasing by Korra and Asami. Apart from that, he ends up getting into all sorts of trouble ever since Kai came along.
    • Overcomes it by the end of Book 3, gaining mutual respect/understanding with Kai and demonstrating again that he is a quick-thinking force to be reckoned with in a life or death fight.
  • By-the-Book Cop: When he joins the police force, he does his best to be this. He often finds himself in situations that the Book wasn't meant to cover, though, and he's not completely inflexible when that happens. However, his attitude to play by the book is what gets him in conflict with Korra's recklessness and risk-taking, which leads to their breakup.
  • Cassandra Truth: The police refuse to listen to his suspicions about the Southern Water Tribe Cultural Center bombing because he's a rookie and once was a Triad.
  • Celibate Hero: After all that's happened, he gives up on relationships altogether and decides it's for the best. However, Word of God states that his experiences with Asami and Korra will help him become a better partner in any future relationships.
  • Character Development: In "Remembrance", Mako's gets outlined, which is important given how seldom he talks about himself or his feelings. It basically shows how he has gone from a guy who cared mostly about making enough money to make his and his brother's lives better, to someone who wants to live for the sake of others, including strangers. All thanks to Korra's example, who continues to inspire him despite all the negative things that have passed between them.
    • This also applies to Mako's future romantic relationships post series. Word of God has confirmed that even though Mako didn't get back together with either Korra or Asami his experiences with both will make him a better partner in any new relationships he has in the future.
    • By Book 4, while Mako does keep his stoic demeanor, he's a lot less brooding and angsty than in Book 1.
  • Charles Atlas Superpower: Not as big an example as Korra, but Mako has shown considerably more upper-body strength than his body type would normally allow. He grabbed an Equalist that held his brother from behind, and launched him over his head somewhere yonder and far off-screen. Then in episode five, he effortlessly carried muscled, stocky Bolin (who just ate and was flailing around) on his shoulder like a rag doll without an inkling of weight strain. And possibly took him home the distance from the noodle shop to the pro-bending arena that way.
  • Chick Magnet: Has obtained the affections of both Korra and Asami and more. It's also lampshaded.
    Bolin: Leave some ladies for the rest of us!
  • Chromatic Arrangement: Red, but his personality fits the typical blue more.
  • Cloudcuckoo Landers Minder: In Book 4, is Prince Wu's bodyguard, and has to put up with his absolutely insane antics.
  • Combat Pragmatism: If he has to win a fight Mako's not afraid to fight dirty. This is best shown in his final fight with Ming-Hua where instead of fighting the Multi-Armed and Dangerous waterbender face on he instead gets up to a vantage point above the pool of water their fighting in and immediately fires a bolt of lightning into it. Suffice it to say thing's don't end well for Ming-Hua.
  • Conflicting Loyalty: Mako has to choose between helping Korra or his duty as a cop. Mako ultimately chooses his job, leading to their breakup.
  • Crash-Into Hello: How he meets Asami — she accidentally hits him with her moped due to his jaywalking.
  • Crazy-Prepared: Book 2 reveals that he's started to write and memorize lists of one-liners that he can use after winning a fight. Some of these are context-sensitive.
  • The Cynic: He tends to look at the negative side of things.
  • Dark and Troubled Past: Seeing his parents killed in a mugging when he was eight, then growing up on the street and later working for the Triple Threat Triads qualifies.
  • Dead Guy Junior/Named After Somebody Famous: Meta example of the former. He's named after Mako, prominent Japanese-American actor who performed the original series' role of Iroh until his death.
  • Deadpan Snarker: Can throw a few out here and there.
  • Declaration of Protection: He says he's always trying to look after Bolin.
  • Did Not Get the Girl: At the end of the series he is the only person in the Krew to not be in a relationship. Adding extra Irony to this is that not only did he not get back together with either of his exes, they end up with each other.
  • The Ditherer: As Korra's Foil, he does his best to avoid conflict and will ignore problems, suppress his own feelings, or follow a You Didn't Ask policy if it means avoiding awkward conversations. His cousin Tu finally calls this out: "You're so afraid about disappointing anyone that you end up disappointing everyone."
  • The Drag-Along: By Book 3, he's more reluctant to go on adventures after everything that's happened to him, and is less willing to get in any sort of trouble. All it took to convince him was for Bolin to guilt-trip him.
  • Elemental Eye Colors: A Firebender with amber eyes.
  • Emotions vs. Stoicism: We have headstrong, brash Korra and cheerful, earnest Bolin vs. serious, "cool under fire" Mako.
  • Fair Cop: As of Book 2.
  • Fatal Flaw: Downplayed. While it hasn't led to serious injury or the ultimate destruction of his relationships, Mako has often put a strain on them with his inability to properly express his feelings.
  • Fingerless Gloves: Part of the pro-bending uniform quota, but he also has his own personal pair.
  • Fire Is Red: Downplays this. Most of his outfit is in neutral colors except for red trim, and his red scarf.
  • First Love: For Asami and Korra, who, after the romantic fiasco that was Book 2, have lost all romantic interest in him. For added irony, the Second Love for both end up being each other.
  • Foil: To Korra and Bolin.
    • Mako and Korra — Mako is a light-skinned native from Republic City. His and Bolin's parents were killed when they were quite young, and since then, they had to always try to make ends meet. Mako is the "cool-under-fire" guy, meaning he doesn't let his emotions cloud his judgement, making it hard to express his real feelings; Korra is the dark-skinned native from the Southern Water Tribe, and is of Mixed Ancestry because her parents were born into different Water Tribes (Mother-Southern, Father-Northern). Her parents were with her entire life, and admitted that other people (her parents and the White Lotus) were always taking care of her. Before a huge amount of Character Development, she was prone to emotional outbursts and never was afraid to let people know what she thought. In addition, Mako believes in structure and plays by the book, while Korra does things her way and leads Team Avatar as a free-for-all.
    • Mako and Bolin — Mako is the serious, cynical, aloof older brother who has problems expressing his true feelings (i.e. the whole Love Triangle fiasco could've been avoided if he was more truthful). Bolin is the silly, cheerful, immature younger brother who is never afraid to cry, fanboy, or express whatever he's feeling. Mako ends up a Celibate Hero, while Bolin becomes an Official Couple with Opal.
  • Foolish Sibling, Responsible Sibling: The responsible to Bolin's foolish. Even more so in Book 3, where he's trying to stay out of trouble that Bolin or Kai get into.
  • Four-Temperament Ensemble: Melancholic- Analytical (his detective skills), can be quite cynical, practical (verging on Only Sane Man), and yet impractical (the whole Love Triangle dilemma was largely due to his inability to express his feelings).
  • The Generic Guy: Evolves into this over the course of the series. His major character arcs revolved around him supporting Bolin (who became self sufficient by Season 2, first as a movie star and later military officer) and his relationships with Korra and Asami (he breaks up with both by Season 3). By Season 4 he's just a disgruntled security guard towards Prince Wu, and good to his friends whenever they need his help. This is highlighted in the clip show episode where he was shown to be the only member of the core team without anything on the line going into the finale or any real motivation beyond loyalty to the others and goodwill towards people in general. His clips were just him casually talking about events to the people in his house in contrast to Korra in a mentoring session with Tenzin or Bolin in an exaggerated movie plot at sea with Varrick. He's easily the most regular guy of the main cast, somewhat of an aversion of the tropes usually associated with the Fire elemental of a team roster.
  • Genre Savvy: In Book 3, he has Kai pegged from the start. Being an orphan and former Street Urchin himself, Kai's sob stories fall on deaf ears.
  • Great Detective: He has amazing perception and has been able to lead Team Avatar to look beneath the surface when things seem fishy. After finding a steady job as a policeman, he very quickly rises to detective rank after Chief Beifong becomes impressed with his abilities.
  • Green-Eyed Monster:
    • To his chagrin in "The Spirit of Competition", when Bolin and Korra head out on their date. Korra calls him out on it after he wrongly accuses her of using his brother for an Operation Jealousy ploy.
    • It also serves as a small Green-Eyed Epiphany. It's implied that whatever he's feeling for Korra has been suppressed, and for good reason (his brother and Asami are core cases). It isn't until Bolin takes his interest for her seriously that Mako begins to confront what he's been denying. The ensuing mess that occurred there (which led to Bolin's heart being broken), had Mako and Korra decide to be Just Friends, at least until Book 1's end.
  • Heroic Willpower: In some form. Mako resists Amon's bloodbending enough to shoot an unpredictable lightning attack at him.
  • Hero of Another Story: Mako gets this treatment after he and Korra break up in "Peacekeepers". Korra leaves Republic city to focus on stopping Unalaq and preventing Vaatu's return, while Mako stays behind to foil Varrick's schemes.
  • Heterosexual Life-Partners: A sibling example, with Bolin. They've always had each other backs and often give each other advice, be it with their bending or with the ladies. He also, eventually, develops one with Wu in Book 4.
  • Hidden Depths: Book 2 shows Mako with great detective skills. Mako is also good at reading maps, as he figured out where the Equalist rally was located by looking at the maps he and Korra obtained from the Equalist protester.
  • Honest Advisor:
    • To Korra, though it causes them to break up in Book 2.
    • To Prince Wu after being assigned as his bodyguard in Book 4. When Mako gets fed up with Wu's immature behavior, he tells Wu that he's just not ready to be a King. And Wu agrees.
  • Hypocrite: Mako more or less admits this to Bolin in the Book 2 episode "Harmonic Convergence", when he is unable to follow his own advice he had previously given to Bolin.
  • Iconic Item: His red scarf. He gives it to his grandmother in Book 3, believing she needed it more.
  • I Did What I Had to Do: His justification for his past dealings with the Triple Threat Triad. He needed to provide for himself and Bolin somehow, and didn't have many options.
  • Innocently Insensitive: He isn't purposefully insensitive all the time, but has had to apologize for his mistakes/behavior more than twice. Especially evident when he doesn't realize that his excessive attention on Korra when she gets kidnapped upsets Asami.
  • Ironic Name: Mako's name is Japanese for "child of truth", but given his lack of truth during the Love Triangle fiasco... Yeah, Mako needs definite work with being honest about his feelings.
  • It Runs in the Family: According to Mako's grandmother, his commitment issues are something he inherited from his grandfather.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: In contrast to his brother, Mako can come off rather grouchy and irritable. While Bolin is initially very friendly with Korra, Mako clashes with her. But he's capable of kindness, rather warm-hearted to those he knows well, and acknowledges when he's in the wrong as well as gives credit where credit is due.
  • Justified Criminal: He once worked for the Triple Threat Triad for money. While he only ran numbers and "stuff", he's not proud of what he did and forbids Bolin from doing the same once they cut ties with them.
  • The Lancer: To Korra, as both a personality foil, and as the most stalwart ally and deputy. In the finale he pledges undying loyalty to her for any future adventures.
  • The Last DJ: In a sense, he's this to New Team Avatar, as he's the only person who hasn't been won over by Varrick in some way.
  • The Leader: Of the Level-headed variety as Captain of the Fire Ferrets, being easily the most mature, practical and experienced member of the group.
  • Lightning Bruiser: When it comes to pro-bending, as the sport calls for it. In his introduction in "A Leaf in the Wind" he defeats a pro-bending team single-handedly while demonstrating power, speed, and endurance. He was considered one of the top players in the pro-bending arena with reason.
  • Long-Range Fighter: Type II. While Mako somewhat held his own when fighting the Lieutenant at close-quarters, he still got quickly overwhelmed (more so when compared to Korra and Asami). He's much more formidable when he keeps his distance and uses ranged attacks.
  • Love at First Sight: Blushed the second he laid eyes on Asami, and then later had floating hearts surrounding his head. They dated pretty quickly after. Unfortunately, it fell into the disillusionment category.
  • Love Epiphany: In "Out Of The Past", when searching for the missing Korra, Mako realizes he's in love with her. Stated in "Endgame", several episodes later.
  • Love Hurts: Mako's love life is one big convoluted mess.
  • Master of the Mixed Message: In episodes 9-11, he keeps showing excessive concern and attention to Korra, ignoring his girlfriend Asami while still denying having feelings for Korra. Asami is not happy about it and calls him out of it.
  • Meaningful Name: He is named after the late actor who voiced General Iroh in the first series.
  • Mixed Ancestry: Half-Fire Nation, half-Earth Kingdom.
  • Morality Pet: Deconstructed. Whenever Korra tackles a situation emotionally, he often tries to remind her that her not getting her way happens for a good reason. Korra, however, just dismisses it as him taking another person's side, which upsets Mako greatly. Finally, just when Korra didn't take well the president's (well-meaning) refusal to help her, he was tired of having to worry about Korra messing up, so he decided to tell the president about what she was planning.
  • Mundane Utility: He uses his lightning skill to earn money by working at a power plant.
  • No Social Skills: In terms of relationship conventions. It's pretty clear that he doesn't know how to deal with people and personal feelings very well.
  • Not So Above It All: His first encounter with Asami leaves him a slack-jawed, love-drunk idiot emitting pink hearts.
  • Not So Stoic: The mask does slip from time to time, though, such as in his reaction to Asami and behavior when Korra is kidnapped. It's also a pretty bad idea to threaten Bolin.
  • Not With Them For The Money: He isn't interested in Asami for her money. He does appreciate the luxury that comes from being her boyfriend, though.
  • Official Couple: Seemingly with Asami through most of Book 1, but she turns out to be a Romantic False Lead and the real Official Couple is him and Korra. However, they break up mid-Book 2 and he's been focused on work ever since.
  • Old Flame: He and Asami went on a few dates in "The Guide", but events (namely Mako going to prison until he was proven innocent, and then Mako not immediately telling Korra they had broken up) spoil that. Regardless, they weren't in an official relationship, which he had to clarify to a confused Prince Wu.
  • One Head Taller: Than Korra.
  • One-Hour Work Week: Mako may be a cop, but he's got plenty of time for adventures without it compromising his job. It's also justified due to the fact that not only is his boss Lin Beifong (usually) in on what the Avatar does, but she occasionally accompanies him on his adventures too.
  • Only in It for the Money: Being a past Street Urchin and understandably needing cash (he and Bolin are still poor) to keep them from having to return to that life, this is Mako's main goal for competing in the pro-bending tournaments — to hit that jackpot. It's no surprise that he quits in the following season to join the police force, which doubtless pays a decent wage.
  • Only Sane Man: Shares the role with Asami, being one of the more level-headed members of the team. Becomes the sole voice of reason after "The Sting", being the only one who knows Varrick is behind the sabotage of Future Industries, and now no one believes him, not even his own brother.
  • Ooh, Me Accent's Slipping: In-universe example. He has only a slight Brooklyn accent around people he doesn't know personally (Korra, Butakha), but it gets heavier when he talks to Bolin or other street kids.
  • Opposites Attract: His and Korra's dynamic. She challenges him, figuratively and literally.
  • Out of Focus: In Seasons 3 and 4 he has noticeably less screentime than usual, being relegated to a comic relief subplot and disappearing for three episodes in a row in Season 4. He is also the only lead character not to have his own personal subplot in Season 4, whereas Korra, Asami and Bolin all are given their own personal obstacles to overcome as the season goes on. Mako, on the other hand, is used to further the character arc of a secondary character, Prince Wu.
  • Pals with Jesus: Invoked in "The Sting" where he offered to convince Korra to restore the bending of one of the Triple Threats members if they aided him.
  • Parental Abandonment: His and Bolin's parents were murdered by a firebender during a mugging. Thankfully, he discovers he has plenty of other relatives who also look out for him.
  • Playing with Fire: He's a firebender.
  • Poor Communication Kills: He has a major problem with this, and it often causes him to look bad in front of everyone. When it came to Varrick trying to get the president to go to war, he was just too uncomfortable to let it pass, taking matters into his own hands without trying to fully explain to everyone the harsh implications of doing so.
  • Pragmatic Anti Hero: When push comes to shove, if his back is to the wall, Mako isn't afraid to kill if it means defeating his enemies. Just ask Ming-Hua.
  • Pretty Boy: Visually, of course, as well as outright called a "beautiful man" by the creators.
  • Promotion to Parent: Mako took care of Bolin at a young age, while the two of them were living on the streets.
  • Real Men Cook: Unsurprising when you take in Promotion to Parent, though. Also, his firebending would help greatly.
  • "The Reason You Suck" Speech: Delivers a quick one to Korra during their argument in "Peacekeepers":
    Mako: Enough! Look, I have a job to do! I can't constantly be worrying about keeping you from making another huge mistake!
  • Red Oni, Blue Oni: The blue to Korra's red. In addition to their different temperaments, he's powerful, but more focused and technical as opposed to Korra's usual method of dealing with opponents. Yet he is a Red Oni compared to Asami.
  • Relationship Sabotage: A minor case with trying to deflect Bolin's interest in Korra by claiming she is not girlfriend material after saying aloud to Bolin a sentence earlier that she was. And emphasizing that dating a teammate is a bad idea. Of course, this doesn't deter Bolin at all, and it could be said that a part of Mako was looking out for him in some way.
    • It's likely the reasons he gave Bolin were also reasons he'd given himself to not explore his own attraction to Korra (especially since not dating a teammate is valid advice). So he had probably already decided to sabotage his own relationship with Korra, too, resulting in choosing to date Asami.
  • Romantic False Lead: At the end of the series Mako is revealed to have been this for both Korra and Asami as the two of them become each other's true Official Couple. Word of God even confirmed that, even if Korrasami wasn't made canon at the end of the series, Mako was only intended to be Korra's love interest for the end of season 1.
  • Romantic Runner-Up: Based on the finale, Mako ultimately ended up being this for both Korra and Asami, who end up with each other. It's actually one of the things the girls bonded over in Book 3.
  • Savvy Guy, Energetic Girl: The cool-under-fire Savvy Guy to Korra's loud, full-of-energy Energetic Girl.
  • Scarf of Asskicking: His Tragic Keepsake he always wears and unlike most scarfs this one actually has been used to kick ass. Korra did it but it was still a wicked Jason Bourne-style ass-kicking.
  • Sensitive Guy and Manly Man: The stoic, blunt Manly Man to Bolin's comical, In Love with Love Sensitive Guy.
  • Sexual Karma: He has a problem with dithering behavior concerning his romances with Asami and Korra which ultimately ended up sinking both. He is also the only member of Team Avatar not paired up with a significant other by series end; even Bolin finds love in Opal's arms. Ironically, the two women with whom he had messy relationships ended up together in the end.
  • Shipper on Deck: Gives Bolin advice on how to spend time with Opal.
  • Shock and Awe: He can generate and redirect lightning.
  • Shoutout: He was named after Iroh's original voice actor.
  • Sibling Rivalry: Bolin and Mako fell out with each other Book 2, that Bolin decided to move out on his own. They eventually patch things up.
  • Sibling Team: With Bolin, either with pro-bending or intense battles.
  • Sibling Triangle: Both he and Bolin liked Korra at the beginning of season one. It came to its peek in "The Spirit of Competition" and to an end when Bolin realized that his romantic interest in Korra wasn't reciprocated.
  • Sibling Yin-Yang: Mako's serious, though not quite as downcast as his clone. Life in the streets toughened him up, and he feels responsible for both himself and his younger brother, being he's the only family he has left. Bolin is the easygoing, naive one of the two. They are a bit opposite in body builds as well: Mako is more wiry while Bolin is stocky.
  • Sickeningly Sweethearts: With Asami, much to Korra's dismay.
  • Sleep Cute: Shared one with Korra in "The Revelation". Upon waking, he freaks out a little.
  • The Southpaw: It's not explicitly shown, and all benders have a natural degree of ambidexterity due to the nature of their craft, but Mako is often shown leading with his left hand/foot - most prominent in his sustained lighting-bending at the end of Book 4.
  • The Spock: To Korra's McCoy and Bolin's and Asami's Kirk. He always thinks with his heads and often is the voice of reason.
  • The Stoic: He's controlled, keeps a cool head under pressure, and masks his expression with indifference.
  • The Stool Pigeon: Of the Whistleblower Wilson variety. He sold Korra (along with Varrick, Asami, and Bolin) out to the President, but he truly believed the whole plan was a terrible, amoral idea.
  • Straight Man and Wise Guy: The stoic, aloof Straight Man to Bolin's silly, goofy Wise Guy. Later, after Bolin signs up with Kuvira, Prince Wu takes the place as the Wise Guy.
  • The Strategist: Came up with a plan to get Bolin and escape the rally. In fact, his rationality and analytical mind are often highlighted.
  • Street Urchin: Before the events of the show. Mako is still well-versed in street info and connections, knowing the location of the Triple Threat Triad headquarters after working for them, and about chi-blocking and the Equalists. He also uses this knowledge to know Kai's Street Urchin status shouldn't be overlooked.
  • Strong Family Resemblance: To his late mother. His paternal grandmother mentions that they both have the same eyes.
  • Sugar and Ice Personality: To those he doesn't know or doesn't care for, he is generally cold. To people he either knows or wants to know better, like Asami's father, he is much warmer.
  • Suspiciously Similar Substitute: To a small extent. The creators said he reminds them of Zuko "without the angst"; a bit of a brooder but he's "lighter". This is ironic, considering that much of the fandom compare his personality to that of Katara.
  • Tall, Dark and Handsome: A straight example. Even his voice actor described him as "tall and handsome", and his official bios are consistent in restating this fact. The show isn't shy about it either.
    Jinora: Oooh, he's cute. Korra, is that the handsome firebender boy that drives you crazy?
  • Tall, Dark and Snarky: Occasionally, such as when Naïve Newcomer Korra makes a mistake he will snark about it.
  • Team Dad: Shades of it. He's the level headed one who keeps Korra from going guns a' blazing to handle a dilemma, and is a stickler about rules. This isn't even adding his whole relationship dynamic with his brother.
    • "And The Winner Is..." had him step in defense of Korra during a round with the Wolfbats, attempting to block a three-on-one attack that almost knocked them both out the ring. He also shows concern about her going after Amon and the Equalists, telling her to be careful. Once she comes out of that fight unscathed, he runs up to her fretfully and gives her a hug, glad to see she's okay. He's certainly very protective about people he cares about.
  • Technician vs. Performer: The Technician to Korra's and Bolin's Performer.
  • To Be Lawful or Good: The President was increasingly suspicious of Korra's activity, and asked Mako if she was planning something. He had to remind Mako that he made an oath to his country. This is enough to tip the balance between Mako's love for Korra and his own morals and duties in favor of the later, and he tells Raiko about Korra and Varrick's plan to go directly to the military of Republic City. He made this decision for Korra's own sake as well, because he can't constantly worry about her making a wrong decision.
  • Took a Level in Cheerfulness: Mako still keeps his stoic demeanor, but by Book 4 he is less sulky and angst-ridden than he was in Book 1.
  • Took A Level In Idealism: In Book 1, Mako only cared about his and Bolin's well being. By Book 4, he is now putting the welfare of other people, (not just him, Bolin, or his friends) first.
  • Took a Level in Kindness: As of the second season, he's less jerk, more heart of gold. He's trying his best to be supportive and understanding of Korra, at least. Took on another level in Book 3, when he starts to be more supportive of Bolin. By the series finale, Mako has fully evolved into an All-Loving Hero.
  • Tragic Keepsake: His red scarf is confirmed to have belonged to his father. He gives it to his grandmother when he and Bolin meet his father's family in Ba Sing Se.
  • Troubled, but Cute: Tough past? Check. Stand-offish? Check. Good-looking? Check.
  • Unbroken Vigil: He stays by Korra's side as she lies resting after her escape from Tarrlok.
  • Undying Loyalty: To Bolin. The majority of Mako's life has been spent protecting and caring for the basic needs of his little brother, something that doesn't appear to be changing at all as they enter adulthood. In the end, he declares his loyalty to Korra, pledging to follow her anywhere.
  • Unresolved Sexual Tension: Has this mechanic with Korra. As of the Book 1 finale, it's been resolved.
  • Unusual Eyebrows: Of the "kinked" type. Inherited from his mother.
  • Weak, but Skilled: Compared to Korra and Bolin. Korra is the Avatar with all the power that implies, while Bolin approaches being a Person of Mass Destruction by the end of the series. Mako is exceptionally talented, but lacks the firepower his bending teammates possess.
  • What The Hell Heroine: Gives this to Korra in "Peacekeepers", when she participates in insurrectionist bordering behavior in her attempts to solve the Water Tribes' civil war.
  • Working with the Ex: With Asami and later Korra.
  • Worthy Opponent: Gets this from Amon in the Book 1 finale, after resisting his bloodbending and electrocuting him at point-blank range. On the other hand, this praise is leavened by Amon kicking the crap out of him for so worthy an attack.
    Amon: I'm impressed. No one has ever gotten the better of me like that. It is almost a shame to purify someone so talented. Almost.
  • Your Cheating Heart: Returns Korra's Forceful Kiss/"Shut Up" Kiss despite being in a relationship with Asami. He then commits the huge mistake of hiding it all from Asami, and she only learns about it through Bolin; understandably, Asami is not too happy about it.

    Naga 

Naga

"Your best friend... is a polar bear dog. Somehow that makes perfect sense." —Mako

Korra's companion and best friend, a polar bear dog.
  • Action Pet: Charges a few times in to save her friends.
  • Badass Adorable: She is big and strong enough to topple three Equalist-mechas, but once you befriend her, she is a loving puppy.
  • Bears Are Bad News: Korra is the first person to ever tame a polar-bear dog, which are fierce enough that one of Korra's previous lives wore the hide of one to look more badass. She can and does use Naga as an intimidation tool, and Naga is fiercely protective of Korra.
  • Big Damn Heroes: Like her predecessor in the "larger animal companion" category, Appa, she has a habit of extricating our heroes from dicey situations in the nick of time.
  • Big Friendly Dog: Her Establishing Character Moment is licking Korra's face over and over. Her friendliness extends to those beyond Korra too, as seen when she licks a police attendant's hair.
  • Canine Companion: Well, she's halfway there, anyway.
  • Canis Major: A dog the size of a bear.
  • Cute Giant: See above.
  • Demoted to Extra: By Book 4, Naga is only seen in flashbacks, her reunion with Korra, and the series finale.
  • Evil-Detecting Dog:
    • She detects the presence of the dark spirits long before anyone else does.
    • She also detects the Red Lotus breaking into Korra's room when they've done nothing more than make a slight opening in the window.
  • Familiar: Continues the tradition of Avatars having a particular companion animal.
  • Heroic Dog: As Korra's companion, it is what she is.
  • Horse of a Different Color: She is able to carry Korra, Mako, and Bolin with ease and good speeds. The entire crew proves to be too heavy to carry though.
  • Jack Bauer Interrogation Technique: Played with — she is the technique.
  • Loyal Animal Companion: She adores Korra and does her best to protect her. In "The Voice in the Night", it's shown that Korra lets Naga sleep next to her bed. When Korra was kidnapped, she tracked her down on her own.
  • Mama Bear:
    • A literal example; she even traveled far out of Republic City to rescue Korra.
    • Carries over to the rest of Team Avatar by the end of Book 1 when she rescues Asami, Bolin and General Iroh after they were captured trying to take out the Equalist's airbase. Later in the same episode, she takes out three Equalist mecha tanks that were attacking Bolin.
  • Meaningful Name:
    • "Naga" is Inuktitut for "no." Given that Korra is the first person to have tamed a polar bear dog, and the Water Tribe is based on Inuit culture, one can imagine Korra had to yell "No!" enough that the name stuck.
    • Nāga are a type of entity or deity in Hindu mythology that are often depicted as guardian spirits. Vishnu, the great preserver god of Hinduism and manifestation of ten different avatars, has a nāga guardian.
  • Mighty Roar: Delivers one of these to Jerk Ass Pretty Boy Tahno, in episode five, scaring him and his team away from a confrontation with Korra and Bolin.
  • Mix-and-Match Critters: Naga's hind end is thinner, like a dog's, while her front has bear-like proportions. Her skull shape is more ursine, while her floppy ears and slobbery jowls are more canine.
  • Non-Human Sidekick: To Korra.
  • The Nose Knows: She's a scent tracker as well. The team employed her olfactory senses to track Aiwei after his duplicity was exposed and he fled Zaofu.
  • Only Friend: Naga was Korra's only friend during her years at the compound in the Southern Water Tribe.
  • Super Strength: She's capable of toppling three Equalist Mecha-Tanks at once by grabbing their grapple lines and giving a hard tug. She can also batter down wrought iron prison bars.
  • Undying Loyalty: To Korra. Considering that she's part dog, and Korra's spirit guide, this is a given.
  • Unusually Uninteresting Sight: Nobody comments on the very large, potentially dangerous animal running around Republic City. Except in the pilot, where more focus is given to Korra's bad 'driving' then Naga.

    Pabu 

Pabu

A fire ferret. Bolin's pet and partner in crime.
  • Demoted to Extra: Pabu, along with Naga, only makes minor appearances in Book 4.
  • Evil-Detecting Dog:
    • Pabu sits peacefully by the radio while music plays, but hisses and jumps away when Amon interrupts the scheduled program.
    • Scurries for cover when Desna and Eska enter the room in "Civil Wars Part 2." Of course, this may be because Desna had been handling him roughly in the previous episode.
    • Goes nuts twice in "The Terror Within," once when the bad guys are sneaking in and once while they're sneaking out.
  • Fluffy Dry Cat: In "The Aftermath", after the butler dries him down with a towel.
  • Meaningful Name: In Korean, Pabu is a term of endearment, kind of like 'silly you', which is befitting of his antics. Even more fitting is that Pabu is Tibetan for 'puffball'.
  • Mix-and-Match Critters: Ferrets, minks and red pandas.
  • Nonhuman Sidekick: To Bolin primarily. Bolin has left him with Ikki in Book 4 while he serves in Kuvira's army.
  • Non-Indicative Name: Despite the species name, Fire Ferrets aren't native to the Fire Nation but from central Earth Kingdom according to Jinora. It may actually refer to "fire fox", another name for the red panda.
  • Panda-ing to the Audience: He is a combination of a red panda and a black-footed ferret.
  • Parrot Pet Position: He tends to ride on people's shoulders.
  • The Prankster: Helps his owner pull practical jokes on his older brother.
  • Puppy-Dog Eyes: In the Republic City Rumble short showing his back story it reveals he is adept at these, as is Bolin.
  • Ridiculously Cute Critter: Like his predecessor in the "Smaller Companion Animal" role, Momo. Look at him.
  • Team Pet: To the Fire Ferrets.
  • Timmy in a Well: Though Mako and Korra are dubious at first, it turns out Bolin's bond with him really is good enough to get across when they need a rescue.note 
  • Weasel Mascot: Bonus points for being their actual mascot.