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.
  • Expository Hairstyle Change: Each hairstyle of the members of Team Avatar changes at the start of Book 4.
  • 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: Throughout the series, Team Avatar befriends numerous individuals who become Honorary True Companions who fight alongside them at different points. During Book Four, 'Team Avatar' was disbanded, and the various group members more often operate separately, in concert with other recurring allies, than they do as Team Avatar. However by the Series Finale, Team Avatar reforms, 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. Republic City finally recognizes Korra as the hero she is.
    • 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.
      • After Zaheer kills the Earth Queen, that makes the subject null-and-void.
  • 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.
  • Love at First Sight: 3/4ths of the team get this.
    • According to Shiro Shinobi, Korra fell in love with Mako the moment she saw him.
    • Bolin explicitly tells Korra he fell for her the moment he saw her. The first time we see him was him spotting Korra across the room and smoothing back his hair, and immediately after he walks up to her he starts implying to Toza that they are a couple (which Korra is quick to correct).
    • Mako falls hard for Asami within seconds of their Crash-Into Hello, as communicated by cartoon heart bubbles.
    • Ultimately deconstructed. None of the above relationships work out by the end of the series and each pair remains platonic partners. The only relationships that do work require work to keep it that way (Bolin and Opal) or build up based on preexisting, strengthening emotions that eventually become romantic (Asami and Korra).
  • Meaningful Name: Their names reflect some part of their abilities, life, personality, and/or physical looks.
  • 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 

    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.
  • The Atoner: Since Book 2, Asami has tirelessly worked to restore her family's name and Future Industry's reputation after her father's arrest for his Equalist involvement.
  • 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.
  • Clothes Make the Superman: Starting with the later part of season one, she acquires an equalist shock glove that she continues to use over the course of the series.
  • 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.
  • Combat Stilettos: Asami wears high-heel shoes either in relaxation or in battle.
  • 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.
  • Expository Hairstyle Change: After the Time Skip, Asami sports a braid — showcasing her mastery in the business world.
  • 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 Decorations: Upon close inspection, Asami is shown to be wearing hairclips.
  • 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.
  • 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.
  • Skirt over Slacks: Her second outfit — A short, purple skirt with red leggings underneath.
  • The Smart Girl: 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.
  • Tragic Keepsake: Future Industry is all she has from her family.
  • 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 Love Is Unrequited: Bolin found this out the hard way when he saw Korra kissing Mako.
    • Gets another one in Book 2, with his co-star, Ginger.
  • 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: Bolin explains to his brother Mako why he likes Avatar Korra: "Korra and I are perfect for each other. She's strong, I'm strong. She's fun, I'm fun. She's beautiful...I'm gorgeous!"
    • Though unfortunately for Bolin, Korra doesn't feel the same way. While she does care very much about him as a friend, her affections lie firmly with Mako, who is Not So Different from Korra.
    • It pays off better in Season 3 when Bolin meets Opal, Lin Beifong's niece, who's just as Adorkable and kind hearted as he is.
  • 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, 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 had 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.
  • Bromantic Foil: 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.
  • 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.
  • Cannot Keep a Secret: Bolin is not the best at keeping secrets, as he accidentally blabbed to Asami about Mako and Korra's kiss while she was still dating his brother.
  • 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.
  • Expository Hairstyle Change: Like Mako, in Book 4 he now has a hairstyle that is more restrained and kempt than what he wore previously, as befits his role as a peacekeeping soldier.
  • 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.
  • 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.
  • 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.
  • Amateur Sleuth: Mako proved to be a skilled detective in Book 2, despite being a beat cop at the time.
  • 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.
  • 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.
  • 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.
  • 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.
  • Bonding Over Missing Parents: With Asami.
  • Bond One-Liner: In Book 2, he keeps an entire list on hand to use when he captures criminals.
  • 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.
  • Bromantic Foil: 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.
  • 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.
  • Cannot Spit It Out: Mako is unable to be honest about his feelings (i.e. The Love Triangle mess), causing strain in his relationships.
  • The Captain: Of the pro-bending team, the Fire Ferrets. However, after Book 1, he quits when he becomes an off-duty cop.
  • 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.
  • Expository Hairstyle Change: Like Bolin, in Book 4 he now has a hairstyle that is more restrained and kempt than what he wore previously, as befits his role as a bodyguard to royalty.
  • 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.
    • 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.
  • 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.
  • Grumpy Bear: Has been described as a "grouch".
  • 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 Friend: Mako is forced to work with and be around Prince Wu, and Team Avatar saves him. None of them bother hiding dislike at his antics and the friendliest behavior he gets from them is stone-faced tolerance. He still says they're the best friends a guy could have. Is this pure obliviousness, or has he never had friends? Despite some supporters early on he also suggests that he's never had a girlfriend.
  • 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.
  • The Reliable One: One dominant aspect about Mako is that he's someone you can count on when things get tough.
  • 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.
  • So Proud of You:
    • Wu's suggestion that they evacuate the civilians of Republic City in advance of Kuvira's assault makes Mako feel this way about him. Subverted when we find out it was just a ploy to impress Korra.
    • Played straight in "Kuvira's Gambit" after he gives a good Rousing Speech that convinces the citizens of Republic City to calmly evacuate, both Lin and Mako give him props (especially after the latter completely botched his attempt to do the same). Mako was speechless afterwards.
    • And in the series finale, Mako again expresses praise when he hears about how level-headed Prince Wu was during the evacuation. And Korra herself expresses praise when he reveals his intent to dissolve the monarchy and let the states govern themselves. She even promises to help him make the transition as smooth as possible.
  • 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.