Characters: The Legend Of Korra Other Characters
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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Voiced by George Coe
A former pro-bender who captained the championship-winning Black Quarry Boar-q-pines, Toza is an elderly man who trains Mako and Bolin and gave them a place to stay when they left the triads.
- Ascended Extra: In "Republic City Hustle" he's more important and we get a bit of his backstory.
- Badass Grandpa: The web serial "Republic City Hustle" shows that even past his prime, he can more than handle himself in both the arena and in a fight.
- Dishing Out Dirt: Seen moving "Earth dumbbells" in a few of his scenes in the workout room.
- Glory Days: "Republic City Hustle" shows that he was actually quite famous back when he was still pro-bending.
- Grumpy Old Man: His meeting with Korra had him quite grouchy.
- Jerk with a Heart of Gold: He may be a grump, but he gave Mako and Bolin a place to stay, and trained them in pro-bending, which qualifies him for "Heart of Gold" status.
- In fact, he took Mako and Bolin under his wing in part to save them from a life of crime (after jumping in to help them fight against their triad employers, at that).
- Meaningful Name: The Tosa Inu is a Japanese dog used in dog fighting matches.
- The Mentor: To Mako and Bolin before the start of the series.
- Perpetual Frowner: In the main show; we do get to see him smile a bit in the end of "Republic City Hustle", though.
- Small Role, Big Impact: He plays a fairly significant part in the backstory of Mako and Bolin, being the person who inducted them into the sport of pro-bending and gave them lodging in his gym (arguably making him the closest thing they currently have to a substitute parent). However, his role in the series is very small and he makes no appearance post the first season at all. This was partly remedied by the Republic City Hustle shorts, though.
- Throwing the Fight: Used to do this for the Triads once he grew past his prime, until a young Bolin inspired him to take pro-bending seriously again.
"You know...If you'd like to learn how a real pro bends, I could give you some private lessons."
A rival pro-bender of the Fire Ferrets. The captain of the Wolfbats.
- Badass Baritone: His thin, refined, effeminate appearance clashes with his deep voice.
- Break the Haughty: He ends up being attacked and de-bended by Amon for cheating during the pro-bending finals. The next time Korra sees him, he's a broken man.
- The Casanova: He is already with two women before he hits on Korra.
- Cheaters Never Prosper: Played with. His team wins the tournament through cheating, but get their bending taken away because they were cheating.
- Chekhov's Gunman: Makes a brief appearance in a newspaper photo in "A Leaf in the Wind".
- Dance Battler: He and his teammates have an especially extravagant fighting style with a lot of flips and mid-air twirls, to go along with their status as high grade show fighters.
- The Dandy: Close-up shots of his face make him look like he's wearing eye-liner, he has a minor rose motif, and his fashion choices and way of carrying himself have a rather effeminate swank.
- De-power: Amon takes his bending away, along with that of his team, as punishment for cheating in the finale tournament match. If one takes the game as loosely canon, Korra restored his bending between seasons.
- Don't Create a Martyr: Inverted. As a professional bender who obviously cheats to win his matches and gets away with it, he's a perfect example for Amon to use as why the Equalists are de-powering benders, and Amon does so to demonstrate why such benders deserve to be punished.
- Eerie Pale-Skinned Brunette: Especially notable because those features aren't generally associated with waterbenders.
- Expository Hairstyle Change: After Amon takes his bending, his hair becomes "floppy" to emphasize how broken he is about it.
- The Fighting Narcissist: Like you wouldn't believe.
- Foil: To Korra. Both are arrogant and skilled athletes with a certain amount of entitlement. They're set up as rivals right from the start, being waterbenders on opposing teams. They see their bending as a huge part of their identity. Ultimately, both have their bending taken by Amon and become depressed over it.
- Laser-Guided Karma: He bribes the referee so his team can cheat to win the tournament, then gets his bending taken away by Amon precisely because he's a cheater.
- Meaningful Name: Tahno refers to the river Tano in Africa. It also means fame and glory in the Slavonic languages. No name could be more appropriate for him.
- Opposing Sports Team: his team, the Wolfbats, is this to the Fire Ferrets.
- Pyrrhic Villainy: By rigging the match in his favor, he manages to beat the Fire Ferrets and win the pro-bending tournament. Minutes later, he's beaten and de-bended by Amon, who singled him out specifically because he's a cheating jerk.
- The Rival: He and his fellow Wolfbats are this to Korra and the Fire Ferrets.
- Screams Like a Little Girl: Despite his deep, baritone voice, he does let out a high-pitched shriek when Naga scares him.
- Screw the Rules, I Have Money!: He bribes the referee so his team can use illegal moves in pro-bending.
- She-Fu: Male example; his fighting style has a large number of high jumps and flashy acrobatics.
- Sissy Villain: Seems like this due to his shriek when confronted with Naga, but is actually a subversion. See Agent Peacock above.
- Smug Snake: Until his Break the Haughty experience.
- Tempting Fate: Not a bright idea to flaunt your cheated victory by declaring if anyone else would like the chance to challenge your team.
- Took a Level in Kindness: After being de-bended by Amon. If he gets over his depression about it, it may actually have done him some good.
- Villainous Breakdown: Twice. First, when Korra humiliates him in a tie-breaker fight by beating him in one shot. Then again later, and more seriously, when Amon takes his bending.
Voiced by Sean Gantka
Hasook is the original waterbender on the Fire Ferrets pro-bending team. He became incompetent during the match with the Tigerdillos, nearly caused the Fire Ferrets to lose, and then almost got them disqualified by not showing up to the match. Korra replaces him and joins Mako and Bolin on the Fire Ferrets.
- Making a Splash: Was the team's waterbender before Korra.
- Meaningful Name: "Hasook" is Korean for "lodging" or "boarding house," both types of temporary accommodation. This alludes to his being only a short-term member of the Fire Ferrets.
- The Pete Best: In-universe; he leaves the Fire Ferrets just in time for Korra's arrival to boost their popularity immensely.
- Small Role, Big Impact: Though it is perhaps telling that the big impact he has is entirely through inaction: His no-showing at the Fire Ferrets' pro-bending match is what allows Korra to join the team and get acquainted with Mako and Bolin (as well as the Satos by extension).
- What Happened to the Mouse?: Is never seen again after he leaves the probending match in anger during "A Leaf in the Wind".
Gommu is a vagabond living in a bush in Republic City Park. He spies Korra eating fish, and asks her for one. He then explains to Korra that Republic City is worse than it seems, before diving back into his bush when a policeman sees them. Before living as a vagabond, he traveled and saw the world working for the United Forces as a telegraph operator.
Voiced by Zach Callison
Skoochy is a crafty and cunning homeless kid who has his ears to the street and is happy to give anyone information, as long as his price is paid. He met Mako and Bolin a few years ago, when they were living on the street as well, soon after he had just escaped from his second orphanage and vowed never to go back. He usually hangs around the Central City Station and picks the pockets of unsuspecting tourists.
Republic City Administration
"I'm very concerned by what's happening down there. But I don't think it's the Republic's place to interfere with internal Water Tribe matters."
Voiced by Spencer Garrett
The new president of the United Republic, elected after the events of Book 1.
- Celebrity Resemblance: The mustache and wireframe glasses make him look like a cross between Sun Yat-sen (founder of the Republic of China) and Teddy Roosevelt◊.
- Chekhov's Gunman: The infodump at the start of Book 2 has a quick shot of him and his wife waving to the cameras.
- Disproportionate Retribution: He banishes Korra from Republic City when she can't do anything about the spirit vine problem, despite her saving the entire city from a much worse fate. He ends up reversing it after she beats the Red Lotus, having gained a new appreciation for her role, and a concern for the current state of the Earth Kingdom following the death of the Earth Queen.
- The Ditherer: He's not really good at making tough decisions or handling crises very well.
- Forgiven But Not Forgotten: Played with: President Raiko formally welcomes Korra back to Republic City and sounds sincere in his belief that the world needs her. Korra, however, is too drained to even acknowledge it and Asami politely insists that they should get moving to the ceremony. Meanwhile, Tonraq sounds a little sore at Raiko, if only because he doesn't fully appreciate what Korra's gone through.
- Happily Married: His wife shows up in "Night of a Thousand Stars".
- Hero Antagonist: He is very suspicious of Korra's actions after she did not get the answer she needs. He has to make sure Korra doesn't go behind his back in this matter. He's very much this after Korra saved the world from Vaatu, and he's not going to guarantee a hero's welcome the next time she sets foot in Republic City.
- Jerkass Has a Point: While she did save Republic City and indeed the world, Korra made the decision to keep the portals to the Spirit World open on her own, without consulting with the President. As a result, the city is completely overrun with mystic, indestructible vines. Entire neighborhoods are unfit for human habitation and parts of the city no longer have access to water service. After the timeskip in Book 4, the city has managed to work around the problem, and now the vines and the spirits that come with them are a tourist attraction. They even renamed Republic City Park after Korra and erected a statue there in her honor.
- Muggle: Implied in the first episode and confirmed by Word of God, he is a non-bender. He is the first leader in the world of Avatar who is not affiliated with any of the four elemental nations, at least not by bending. His actual nationality is never stated.
- Never My Fault: He blames Korra for the mystic vine problem, even though if he had just given her the help she wanted during the Water Tribe Civil War, the whole mess could've been avoided.
- Nice Job Breaking It, Hero: Hiring Kuvira. Because there's no way giving a woman with an army free reign to unite the Earth Kingdom could possibly backfire. This one's not totally on him, though; everyone else was ok with it, too, even if they started showing reservations near the end.
- Obstructive Bureaucrat/Reasonable Authority Figure: He starts out as the latter, but edges into the former as time goes on. When the Water Tribe civil war starts, he rightly characterizes it as an internal conflict and refuses to provide military aid to the South. Later on, when Korra offers him a valid, potentially world-threatening motive that should motivate him to help, he still refuses to send aid, deeming the protection of Republic City more important. Had he committed resources to help Korra stop Unalaq, the problems in Book 3 would either be greatly lessened or outright absent. Zaheer even indirectly references his poor decisions to justify why the world would be better off without such leaders.
- Odd Name Out: Not Raiko himself but his wife, who's named "Buttercup".
- Pet the Dog: He actually became concerned of the state of the Earth Kingdom after hearing of the Earth Queen's death at the hands of the Red Lotus. Never before has he ever shown such concern for what happened in other nations, so this is definitely a first. He even decides to revoke Korra's banishment and declares that the world, not just the United Republic, will need the Avatar more than ever.
- Sleazy Politician: He manipulates the media and public opinion against Korra, in an effort to save his bacon and stay in charge.
- Somebody Else's Problem: He ultimately refuses to take a side in the Water Tribe Civil War, thinking it's not his place to get involved.
- Took a Level in Jerkass: While he was always antagonistic towards Korra, he was never hostile or unreasonable about it. Come Book 3, he's trying to throw Korra under a bus to save his political career and is openly ungrateful for Korra's past heroics. Zaheer cites Korra's conflict with him as an example of why such leadership is better off being eliminated entirely.
- Ungrateful Bastard:
- He's more concerned about the trouble Korra caused with Harmonic Convergence than the fact that she saved the entire city. Korra points this out. Though, given how thick he's laying it on, he may just be doing it to gain voter support by publicly denouncing the extremely unpopular Korra rather than because he actually is ungrateful. Plus, leaving the spirit portals open was not necessary for saving Republic City or the world, and that created a huge slew of problems.
- When the Earth Kingdom falls into chaos and the Avatar is crippled, the first thing he worries about is whether the Avatar will recover and be able to fix things, though at least he's apologetic about his previous behavior.
The captain of the Metalbender Corps working in Republic City under Chief Beifong.
- Beleaguered Assistant: Briefly to Tarrlok.
- The Captain: Of the Metalbending Corp. Second only to Lin.
- Chekhov's Gunman: In the first episode, he's the one that attempts to arrest Korra for property damage.
- Da Chief: After Lin resigns, Tarlock promotes him. Lin gets her position back by the next Book.
- Dishing Out Dirt: As an earthbender.
- The Dragon: To Tarrlok, briefly, which ended when Tarrlok revealed himself as a bloodbender.
- Extra Ore Dinary: As a metalbender.
- Inspector Javert: Goes along with Tarrlok's more extreme policies, and answers directly to him, and thus opposes the heroes, despite being on the same side. When Tarrlok is revealed as evil, Saikhan turns against him.
- Oh, Crap: He gets one after seeing Councilman Tenzin in the lobby after he and Tarrlok detained dozens of non-benders and 3/4ths of the new Team Avatar when they tried to stop the detaining.
- Puppet King: May be chief, but answers directly to Tarrlok, who's head of the Council. Once Tarrlok's nature as a bloodbender is revealed, he sends the officers after him.
- Put on a Bus: Amon's men take him away in episode 10, and he hasn't appeared since. Granted he's probably fine, and the dialogue implies he stepped down and handed the position back to Lin.
- Reasonable Authority Figure: Double Subverted. He's subordinate to Tarrlok, who probably had a hand in making him chief. After Tarrlok is revealed to be evil, he continues to function as chief and tries to regain control of the city, showing an earnest desire to help people and keep the peace while doing so. He works under Tenzin for a bit, before being taken away.
- Unwitting Pawn: Downplayed. Though he isn't aware of Tarrlok's true motives, he nevertheless aids Tarrlok in his morally dubious scheme to arrest of bunch of innocent people in the Dragon Flats District. When he does learn of Tarrlok's true nature, though, he turns on him and is a lot more reasonable.
- Younger Than He Looks: His baldness and wrinkles make him look nearly 60 years old compared to his actual age of 40. Although that's at least with his helmet off.
Lu and Gang
Lu and Gang
A pair of detectives on the police force investigating the various crimes related to Future Industries and the Water Tribe civil war.
- Badass Mustache: If nothing else about them, you gotta admit they do have very nice mustaches.
- Bad Cop/Incompetent Cop: They're never seen doing anything related to their job except arresting Mako, and the evidence Mako finds is just tossed in their desk without consideration. This costs them their detective positions after their incompetence nearly gets the president kidnapped.
- Donut Mess with a Cop: They are seen eating snack cakes during several scenes in "Night of a Thousand Stars". This gets them ambushed because they're too busy paying attention to the snacks.
- Everyone Has Standards: They are among the many characters who silently express their distaste when Mako lies to an amnesiac Korra about them still being together, screwing over Asami.
- Fat and Skinny: Lu and Gang respectively.
- Jerkass: All they ever do on screen is twirl their mustaches, eat snack cakes, and laugh at Mako.
- Laser-Guided Karma: They were demoted after nearly letting the president get kidnapped.
- Never Live It Down: They like to remind Mako of his ties with the Triple Threat Triad.
- Oh, Crap: Their response to Lin demoting them.
- Police Are Useless: They dismiss Mako's claims and evidence (then again, so does Lin), and their only act of police work is to investigate a tip that implicates Mako for the crimes. During the attempt to kidnap the president, they were easily knocked out because they were distracted eating snack cakes.
- Those Two Guys: They always seen together in any scene involving them.
- Underestimating Badassery: They look down on Mako even though they should know what he did last season.
Voiced by Jason Harris
A very unfortunate
- Butt Monkey: Very much.
- When Korra first runs affoul of the law, he grabs her ponytail with a metal cord. She retaliates by bending an ice wall for him to slam into.
- When Hiroshi's mansion is searched, he is left to stand guard over Mako, Bolin, and Asami. The two brothers quickly trick him, tackle him and tie him up. He actually lucked out on this one, as it spared him from being captured with the other officers.
- He's also one of several officers to find himself on the wrong end of a Equalist Mini-Mecha and their magnet arms in the Book 1 finale.
- Dishing Out Dirt/Extra Ore Dinary: Like all metalbenders.
- Grind Boots: Likely through the use of metalbending. Song's shoes are made of metal, and so are several cables. He and other officers slide along them when trying to catch Korra. Song also demonstrated the ability to do it on roof shingles.
- Mauve Shirt: He's the only named metalbender aside from Saihkan and Lin. He can be seen hanging around in shots with groups of police officers.
- Police Are Useless: Downplayed. Song is at least trying to do his job, and he and the metalbenders in general are reasonably good at it. They just keep getting upstaged.
- Punch Clock Villain: When guarding the brothers, he insists on them not going anywhere, so they knock him out. Lampshaded when Mako apologizes to him, as he's just doing his job.
"If you can't make money during a war, then you just plain can't make money!"
Voiced by John Michael Higgins
A resident of the Southern Water Tribe and one of the world's leading businessmen, introduced in Book 2.
- Affably Evil: He is a rather polite, friendly and genuinely kind man, even when he's trying to screw over others or profit off them. Even when he's exposed for his war profiteering, Varrick doesn't take it personally, apologizes for his actions, and is even genuinely helpful to Team Avatar thereafter, lending them a battleship for their attack on the Southern Spirit Portal. Later, after he's relocated to Zaofu, he helps them figure out that Aiwei is the mole responsible for letting the Red Lotus into Zaofu.
- Ambiguously Evil: He's unscrupulous, manipulative, and generally lacking in any sort of moral compass as far as profit goes. That said, when he isn't trying to profit off a situation in some way, he is genuinely helpful and friendly.
- Eccentric Millionaire: An extremely rich businessman and a pretty weird guy.
- Enemy Mine: Double Subverted. Varrick convinces the Krew to work with him after Unalaq's occupation of the Southern Water Tribe gets too extreme for either of their tastes, then ends up manipulating them into intensifying the conflict so he can profit off it. However, when he's caught and thrown in prison, he still aids them by giving them his fully-loaded battleship. In Book 3, despite some lingering animosity from Asami and Mako, he gladly aids them in finding the mole in Zaofu.
- Even Evil Has Standards: Played with. Varrick will do whatever it takes to get rich, but there are certain lines that he won't cross, not even blatant murder. For example, in "The Guide", he makes a Shame If Something Happened threat to Mako regarding Asami and Bolin, but when Mako doesn't go for it, he just frames Mako instead of following through. In the episode "Night of a Thousand Stars", he insists that he never intended to hurt President Raiko after kidnapping him.
- Evil All Along: Or at least Amoral All Along. He never tried to hide it.
- Evil Duo: With Zhu Li. An odd case where the id is the dominant, scheming one in the relationship.
- Evil Versus Oblivion: At first it started out as Evil vs. Evil with Unalaq, as Varrick's whole agenda was to start a war against him, and escalate it by planning false flag operations that blamed the Northern Water Tribe, so that planned war could increase his profits. However, once it was revealed that Unalaq was working for Vaatu, he had no idea that the war he tried to escalate would bring Republic City up against the spirit of darkness that seeks to bring about an apocalypse. As a result, Team Avatar was almost desperate for help from Varrick against Unalaq, even if Varrick used them for his own ends.
- Foreshadowing: Varrick announced in book 3 that the future of Zaofu was "magnets", and shows off a prototype magnet metal suit. He also claimed he was working on a high-powered transportation system using magnets. In book 4, we see a high-powered military train complete with powerful military armor suits under the control of Kuvira.
- Friendly Enemy: He presents himself as this to everyone. However, Mako doesn't return the sentiment.
- Gadgeteer Genius: Implied. In "Old Wounds", he appears testing a magnetized suit of armor, implied to be his own invention. It comes as no surprise, considering he is at the forefront of technological advancements.
- Graceful Loser: Takes his arrest in stride and still helps Team Avatar out.
- Greed: One of his main faults is that he will do anything to get a quick buck. Case in point, one of his main concerns with the Civil War is how it will affect how much he can make.
- Guile Anti-Hero: He aids Team Avatar by providing them his boat and an airplane and uses a Platypus Bear disguise that can poop money to use the crowds as an escape method. Morally questionable, maybe. Downright effective? Yes.
- Heel-Face Turn: Suyin seems to believe Varrick has turned over a new leaf for good, though Lin, Mako and Asami beg to differ. Instead, they treat every instance of working with him as an Enemy Mine situation.
- Irony: After several episodes of being a Karma Houdini, Varrick is finally exposed by Bolin, the one he took under his wing and made the star of his big movie.
- Jerk with a Heart of Gold: He's selfish, greedy and manipulative, but he's shown to be genuinely caring and kind to the Krew and has good intentions, even if it's partly to make a profit.
- Jerk with a Heart of Jerk: He supports the Southern Water Tribe and Team Avatar, but he's only helping out of self-interest and then it is shown he is still a shrewd and ruthless businessman by essentially scamming Asami out of her business.
- Joker Immunity: It seems nothing can contain him, and he survives either by cunning or dumb luck. It didn't help that Vaatu's attack during Harmonic Convergence destroyed his prison and allowed him to escape. He even lampshades this saying that the universe saw fit to set him free.
- Karma Houdini: During Vaatu's attack on Republic City, Varrick took the opportunity to escape, taking refuge in Zaofu as a guest of Suyin Beifong with Zhu Li. As of season four, Kuvira has made President Raiko pardon him, completely absolving Varrick of his crimes.
- Keet: An odd adult example. His energy level is about the same as Meelo most of the time.
- Laughably Evil: Despite all the less than legal, morally questionable things he has done, it's very hard to hate him, even as a villain.
- Lesser of Two Evils: In comparison to Vaatu.
- Lovable Coward: He continuously hid from Unalaq's men after a failed assassination attempt on the Chief, but he did this because he was sure the trial would be rigged. Being a non-bender and general non-combatant, he wouldn't be able to do much in the field.
- Lovable Traitor: He's got it down pat. While Mako and Asami are mad at him for his betrayal, they had to accept his help due to the situation having crossed the Godzilla Threshold. Bolin, however, can't even stay mad at him despite his past actions.
- Luxury Prison Suite: He had a cell in the prison built into this because he felt he would end up in it.
- Mad Scientist: After taking refuge in Zaofu, he tends to be a trouble maker as shown when he causes some trouble while he experiments with his new armor. Plus, there are his experiments in Season 4 with the spirit vines.
- Manipulative Bastard: Plays Asami to buy out Future Industries, while acting as if he was helping to save it. Even before that, he managed to start off the Civil War sooner as opposed to letting tensions unravel by themselves. Once all this happens, his plan to escalate the war for personal gain is set in motion.
- Master of Disguise: Hides in a platypus-bear suit with Zhu Li to evade being arrested.
- Mentor Archetype: Seems to take up this role with Bolin, giving him tips on dealing with Eska and getting him into a career as a movie star.
- Moment Killer: He's guilty of this as much as Unalaq. He is quite rude to the point of popping up in the middle of serious events, such as immediately barging in after Unalaq's speech or testing a magnetic suit of armor on a room where Korra and Suyin were discussing the latter's relationship with her sister.
- Motor Mouth: When forging a deal or showing off a product it's hard to keep up with him. It's quite likely that this is the point.
- Muggle: A non-bender.
- Nice Hat: Wears one while driving a boat in a platypus-bear suit... on the bear's head, not his own.
- Nice Job Breaking It, Hero: By sending his men to attack Unalaq, Varrick helped Unalaq find an excuse to screw over Tonraq, which almost got Tonraq killed, causing a chain of events that led to a civil war. In hindsight, though, he had Unalaq accurately pegged from the start. If anything, he merely sped up a confrontation that would have happened anyway, and in doing so kept Unalaq from consolidating his plans first. The worst part, though, is that Tonraq would've ended up in prison at the North Pole had it not been for Korra's intervention, and Unalaq's plans to unleashing apocalypse have been accelerated. It turns out that failing works out for him, anyway, as Varrick still got his war, and his escape allows him to profit off it. On the other hand, if he had successfully captured or killed Unalaq, it would have diffused the plan to release Vaatu at a very early stage in the plot, but it would still provoke a war he can profit from.
- Nice Job Fixing It, Villain: Varrick unknowingly does this to Unalaq. Had it not been for Varrick's plan to attack Unalaq and start a civil war and exploit it for profit, Korra likely never would have discovered her uncle's true nature, or at least it would have taken her far longer.
- Also extends to Future Industries - after he conned Asami into selling him a controlling interest, he resuscitated the flailing Future Industries to expand his own enterprises. When he was thrown in prison, however, the company defaulted back to Asami, giving her control of a fully revitalized Future Industries.
- Nominal Hero: Though he's on the heroes' side, his participation is out of self-interest. He's not helping the good guys for the independence of the Southern Water Tribe, he's only rebelling just to get back at Unalaq for threatening his business. And to make money, of course.
- Non-Action Big Bad: He is a very skilled tactician and can plan successful false flag operations, but he wouldn't be useful in the field of combat.
- Not Actually The Ultimate Question: It's hard to tell if he was being serious.
Asami: Varrick? What are you doing here?
Varrick: Good question, Asami! I mean, what are we all doing here? Food for thought.
- Not Helping Your Case: He tries to remind the Krew of everything he's done for them after they have a falling out.
: Korra, who warned you about Unalaq? I did! Bolin, who got you into the movers? I
did! Asami, who saved your company? I did!
Mako, who got you thrown in jail?! I did! Oh yeah, I guess that was a bad thing
- Noodle Incident: Apparently once had similar relationship-issues-with-crazy-waterbender as Bolin is now having.
- Obfuscating Stupidity: Acts like an eccentric to hide a rather devious mind. When Mako was convincing Lin to hear his idea that expose Varrick, Varrick immediately acted obnoxious making Lin stop wanting to hear them out.
- Odd Friendship: With Bolin, after Bolin notes he wasn't actually levitating. He even gives Bolin tips on how to deal with a crazy girlfriend (put simply: ditch the chick). After he's arrested, Bolin is the only one who still likes him, though it helps that Varrick has done nothing but make him famous.
- Only in It for the Money: This becomes more clear after The Reveal during "The Sting". Varrick was serious about wanting to defeat Unalaq, but he wanted to kill two birds with one stone; not only would he defeat Unalaq, but he would make money doing so.
- Pet the Dog: He shows he does have some lines he won't cross after all. After he gets caught, he apologizes and lets the protagonists use his battleship. And he points out that he did help them out at some points (such as warning Korra about Unalaq and getting Bolin into acting). He does get stuck in this line of thinking, saying how he saved Asami's company, but he's part of the reason it was in trouble in the first place. The only true act of generosity without any monetary motivation was giving Team Avatar his battleship.
- Platonic Life Partners: Despite his reputation as The Casanova this is his relationship with Zhu Li. They are always together, lived in the same platypus-bear costume for a few days, and shared the same prison cell, yet there are no romantic undertones to their relationship.
- Playing Both Sides:
- Supported both candidates in the presidential election, just to hedge his bets.
- To an extent he tried to do this in order to create a huge war he can profit from, by antagonizing both sides into the conflict. First, he sent his rebels to attack Unalaq, and it led to a civil war regardless of whether or not the attack failed. Then to add more fuel to the fire, he antagonized Republic City by planning a series of false flag operations that implicate the Northern Water Tribe. He even had his goons dressed in Northern military uniforms attack the president, but that failed.
- Plucky Comic Relief: Shares this role with Bolin in the second season.
- Rags to Riches: Born a poor seal-hunter's son, he built his shipping business from a single canoe into a global powerhouse.
- Rebel Leader: He organizes a resistance against Unalaq. However, he is more concerned with the effect Unalaq's blockade is having on his business rather than the continued independence of the Southern Tribe.
- Red Oni, Blue Oni: He is the red oni to Zhu Li.
- Reliable Traitor: Varrick is not very trustworthy, will turn on anyone he allies with, and will capitalize on anyone's bad situation. However, he hates Unalaq as much as the heroes, thus he was the only person who could help them defeat him.
- Right for the Wrong Reasons: He knew all along that Unalaq was up to no good. However, he doesn't know the full extent of Unalaq's true agenda, which was to free Vaatu. Instead, he made the assumption that Unalaq is threatening his businesses, an assumption he used to rally people behind him. The only thing he got right was that Unalaq was rigging a trial he failed to appear in.
- Screw the Rules, I Have Money!: He's not above bribery or just tossing out money to get his way.
- Self-Made Man: Varrick had to work from a single canoe to where he is today. Needless to say, that is rather impressive.
- Shame If Something Happened: To Mako about Asami and Bolin when Mako is trying to reveal his fraud. This was a bluff, though, and Varrick instead opted to frame Mako.
- Sixth Ranger Traitor: To the Krew, though it takes them a while to figure it out. He wants control of any business which will profit off the Water Tribe civil war, and has no problem manipulating or betraying his supposed friends to do it. Even after they get him arrested, he still considers them friends for the most part and states that he's done good things for each of them (save for Mako, who he had framed and arrested).
- Staring Contest: Engages one with Asami as a means to see her worth as a good business partner. It seems to his way of reading her character.
- This Means War!: His happy go lucky persona only goes so far. When his business is threatened, he's willing to go to extremes to protect his interests. He was behind Unalaq's assassination attempt after the latter closed the Southern Water Tribe harbours from traffic, and he still got his war. However, this became a huge mistake on his part. Unalaq's arrival gave him the opportunity to instigate a war make even more profit from it, yet he did not expect that Unalaq would release an evil that will destroy everything, which ultimately compromises his agenda.
- Token Evil Teammate: Morally dubious, anyway. He's not that evil, just has self-interests which he prioritizes above all-else.
- He's also this to his new associates in Zaofu. Unlike the previous Book, however, his behavior borders more on lacking common sense and manners. He is the resident Mad Scientist who tends to be quite rude and insensitive in a setting of refined, serious characters.
- Toxic Friend Influence: Agrees to help Team Avatar resolve the conflict with Unalaq and the Northern Water Tribe. A couple of episodes later, they're helping him smuggle weapons and manufacture racist, exploitative propaganda movies in order to further his elaborate war-profiteering scam. It's remarkable how logical the progression between these two points seems at the time...
- The Triads and the Tongs: He's not above hiring them to further his interests.
- Turncoat: He fits this trope to the letter. He only rebelled against Unalaq and the Water Tribe because he believed it will benefit him personally, which in this case, is profit. Unalaq's arrival gave him the opening he needed, and was the only one who could help the heroes escape Unalaq's wrath. As helpful as he was at first, he was merely a traitor and nothing more. He then turns from Team Avatar to continue his own agenda.
- Villain Has a Point: Even though Team Avatar ended up Unwitting Pawns to Varrick's scheme, everyone, save for Mako, got something that benefitted them in the process. You can't really argue with him when he states that his less than altruistic actions helped them. Case in point, he knew Unalaq couldn't be trusted, and that was a game changer.
- Villain with Good Publicity: Despite rumors of connections with organized crime, Varrick is well-respected and very influential. After he's exposed as a villain and breaks out of prison, he just migrates to Zaofu and sets up shop there. Suyin is aware that he is a criminal, but was willing to give him a second chance.
- War for Fun and Profit: Sets up a string of false-flag operations to escalate the Water Tribe civil war whilst conning Team Avatar into helping him make a buck by selling them weapons, all the while driving Future Industries into bankruptcy so he can buy a controlling interest and earn more money off the sales.
Varrick: If you can't make money during a war, then you just plain can't make money!
- White Collar Crime: Varrick defrauded Asami into selling him controlling interest by stealing Future Industries merchandise while she was distracted.
- Who Needs Enemies?: Varrick wanted to stop Unalaq as much Korra did, but he only wanted to help them because he felt Unalaq was threatening his business. Varrick wanted more from fighting against Unalaq. He masterminded an attack on Unalaq which would result in a civil war, regardless of whether or not Korra intervened. Then, he exploits the heroes' need for military support to advance his scheme of bringing the United Republic to war so that he can make a profit from it. Varrick betrays them by secretly plotting terrorist attacks and defrauding Asami, and only Mako knew of this betrayal.
- Wild Card: Ultimately, Varrick is loyal to himself above all else and will use anyone as long as he can profit from them, even people that he seems to honestly like such as Team Avatar.
- The Wonka: Despite being a rather manic character, he is evidently a very influential businessman. For instance, his idea of testing Asami of how good she'd be as a business partner involved a brief Staring Contest. His voice actor, John Michael Higgins, describes him as "part Rupert Murdoch, part Thomas Edison, part Bozo the Clown."
- Xanatos Gambit: He's constantly setting things up so he'll come out ahead regardless of the outcome. "You gotta hedge your bets!"
- Whether or not Korra foiled his attempted kidnapping/assassination of Unalaq would've yielded the same result anyway—a pretext for war.
- Making money off the civil war; does he care who wins? No. This wouldn't have panned out in the long run with Vaatu's return.
- Donating heavily to both sides of an election so he has influence with the eventual winner.
- Creating a luxury prison suite in case he was caught and a hang-glider to escape from it if he wanted too.
"Zhu Li, do the thing!!"
Varrick's personal assistant.
- Beleaguered Assistant: Poor girl has to constantly be on the move with a boss like Varrick barking orders every two minutes. She even ends up in the same Luxury Prison Suite as he does.
- Cloudcuckoolanders Minder: Again, she's Varrick's personal assistant.
- The Comically Serious: Though she can be pretty snarky on occasions. The fact she never changes her tone of voice in spite of sharing a Platypus Bear suit with her boss for what was implied for over a day, she being the one carrying him, and staying there even while on the boat just puts her on par with Tenzin.
- Evil Duo: With Varrick. She's the superego, always calm, cool, and stoic, no matter what insane situation Varrick drags her into.
- Girl Friday: Her job description is simply "Zhu Li, do ___"
- Human Pack Mule: She's forced to carry all the luggage.
- Hypercompetent Sidekick: She is way more level-headed than her boss, and she seems to be able to keep up with her boss's commands.
- Informed Attribute: Apparently, she is a cold heartless war machine.
- She is seen piloting one of Kuvira's Mini-Mecha in Book 4, so this might no longer apply.
- Meganekko: A very cute one too.
- Nice Hat: She gets a little cap as part of her uniform in Kuvira's army.
- One Steve Limit: Has the same name as one of Varrick's ships. It's a battleship. He named it after her specifically; as Varrick says, "They're both cold, heartless war machines!"
- Phrase Catcher: "Zhu Li! Do the thing!"
- Platonic Life Partners: With Varrick. Seriously, they lived in the same platypus bear suit and it never went anywhere!
- Punny Name: Her name sounds like Julie, one of the most common secretary/assistant names in fiction.
- Red Oni, Blue Oni: The blue to Varrick's red.
- Satellite Character: She is mostly known for being Varrick's assistant, but Zhu Li does have her own characterization.
- Servile Snarker: When Varrick mentions how long it would be before they would be ordered around on eating their cookies, she replied "In a few days" with a deadpan tone.
- Undying Loyalty: To Varrick, obviously. Seriously is she his personal assistant, or his familiar? She's evidently so loyal that she's willing to go to jail alongside him. Though considering that as Varrick's assistant, she'd probably be complicit in all of his crimes, so she's in as deep as he is.
"You're confusing Ginger the actress with Ginger the character... Ginger loves Nuktuk, not Bolin."
Voiced by Amy Gross
The star of Varrick's new line of movers, whom he appeared to hire strictly because of her Fanservice
- Bare Your Midriff: The water tribe outfit she was sporting for the propaganda film Verrick wanted to shoot.
- Beauty Mark: Near her mouth.
- The Casanova: A female example. The Nick website calls her a heartbreaker.
- The Danza: In universe, she plays a character named Ginger in Varrick's movers.
- Everyone Has Standards: Despite her dislike for Bolin, she still warns him when he's about to be attacked.
- Fake Nationality: Unconfirmed but likely, in-universe; she plays a Southern Water Tribe girl in the Nuktuk serials but doesn't seem to have any Water Tribe racial traits.
- Jerkass: Her only salient character trait so far seems to be disliking Bolin.
- Jerkass Has a Point: While she's very dismissive of Bolin and somewhat rude, she appears to do so because she's not interested in him and he can't take the hint, even going as far as forcibly kissing her on screen without it being in the script. While Ginger could have been much angrier for this, she just tells him he's confusing her character with her real self and acting like his love interest on screen doesn't mean she actually likes Bolin in real life. She does think better of him after he gets to be genuinely heroic.
- Meaningful Name: Her name is Ginger and she's a (dyed) ginger.
- Ms. Fanservice: Bolin was too intrigued in her than whatever Varrick had to say.
- Nice Character, Mean Actor: In-universe, and played with. She's the ingenue in the Nuktuk films where she co-stars alongside Bolin. Off the set though, her characterization so far consists of "dislikes co-star," which might be because Bolin is being unusually annoying. However, she Took a Level in Kindness after watching Bolin save the president from Varrick's goons.
- Non-Standard Character Design: One of a very few characters in the franchise with a hair color that isn't black or brown. It's been since confirmed as being dyed.
- Pet the Dog: She became nicer towards Bolin after he saves the president.
- Sexophone: Gets a couple seconds of this in her introduction.
- You Gotta Have Blue Hair: An odd version as it applies only in-universe, where red hair isn't a natural color.
Nuktuk, Hero of the South
A character played by Bolin in Varrick's Nuktuk, Hero of the South
movers. He is the hero of the Southern Water Tribe and seeks to defeat The Evil Unalaq.
- Captain Patriotic: He's a propaganda hero meant to represent the Southern Water Tribe.
- Exposed to the Elements: Nuktuk wears shorts and a fur vest that exposes his chest. The setting of his story is the South Pole!. His damsel is the same as she shows her midriff and wears a mini skirt.
Wouldn't I be cold
wearing this outfit in the snow
Ehh, Nuktuk is never
- Fake Nationality: In-universe. The character is a Waterbender of the Southern Water Tribe, but the actor Bolin is an Earthbender from Republic City.
- Race Lift: Earthbenders like Bolin are based on East Asians while Waterbenders are based on Inuit. Although it's not impossible for a Waterbender to be fair-skinned (as shown by Tahno), all native Southern Water Tribesmen are shown to be brown-skinned.
- Rated M for Manly: A Badass Exposed to the Elements who defeats evil. Varrick must have been invoking this.
The Evil Unalaq
The Evil Unalaq
Voiced by: Jason Harris
The version of Unalaq appearing in Varrick's Nuktuk, Hero of the South
propaganda films. He is the arch enemy of Nuktuk, and with his waterbending device he plans to destroy the world.
- Accidentally Accurate: In-Universe, Varrick's exaggerated characterization of him turned out to be somewhat prophetic. Right down to the evil giant bird.
- Beard of Evil: Unlike his real counterpart, The Evil Unalaq sports a goatee.
- Big Bad: He is the main villain of the Nuktuk movers, since they're propoganda films.
- Card-Carrying Villain: He proudly refers to his plans agains Nuktuk as evil, in classic villain fashion.
- Character Exaggeration: An in-universe example in regards to his depiction of the "real" Unalaq. Turns out to be Accidentally Accurate when the real Unalaq is shown to be just as egomaniacal as his fictional counterpart, but not quite as theatrical.
- Doomsday Device: His will freeze the Earth's core.
- Evil Is Hammy: What did you expect?
- Evil Laugh
- Evil Overlord: He is the diabolical leader of the Northern Water Tribe.
- Evil Plan: He plans to use a Doomsday device to freeze the entire world.
- Expy: He looks very similar to the Ember Island Players version of Ozai from Avatar: The Last Airbender. He's also quite obviously a reference to him, as both are incredibly hammy stage versions of the main villains.
- Godwin's Law: Why is he so similar to Actor!Ozai? To make Unalaq more closely resemble Firelord Ozai, the "Hitler" of their world! Evil Unalaq's plan to freeze the world also parallels Ozai's plan to torch the entire Earth Kingdom using Sozin's Comet.
- Large Ham: He is constantly being over the top and theatrical.
- Nice Job Fixing It, Villain: His waterbending device reverses the polarity of the Earth, causing Nuktuk's animal buddy Jijou to come back to life.
- Spikes of Villainy: His costume bears no subtlety whatsoever in showing them off.
- Take Over the World: With his waterbending device, he plans to rule the world. Or destroy it. Does it really matter?
Earth Kingdom inhabitants
Mako & Bolin's Earth Kingdom Family
The very extended family from the brothers' father's side. A whole family living in an apartment with Grandma Yin being their head of the household.
- Amazingly Embarrassing Parents: Or grandparents, in this case. Yin pulls the typical grandmotherly "why aren't you dating her" trick on Mako... around Korra and Asami.
- Big Ol' Eyebrows: All of them have this trait.
- Cool Old Lady: Grandma Yin is very energetic for her age.
- Dishing Out Dirt: Tu, the cousin whom the boys met first, has been confirmed to be an earthbender (although he's never actually used said ability).
- Honor Before Reason: Even when her home was on fire, Yin still refuses to leave over the fact her house has been in her family for generations.
- I Choose to Stay: Yin tried to stay behind in "The Ultimatum" even though Ba Sing Se was going up in flames. Bolin forces her to leave.
- Informed Ability: Tu's earthbending.
- Massive Numbered Cousins: It's not 100% clear precisely how each of them is related to the others — i.e. who are siblings, who are cousins, who are married etc. — but there are a lot of them.
- Small Name, Big Ego: Downplayed with Tu. He's insulted they don't want to steal his fruit, claims that he could have stolen an airship too, and the like. He's not treated seriously, though, instead coming off as humorous mild jealousy rather than a flaw, especially as he doesn't otherwise get much screentime.
- Spanner in the Works: Had Mako and Bolin had not met them, they would not have learned the Earth Queen was rounding up the new airbenders in the city to use for her army.
- Strong Family Resemblance: Bolin clearly inherited his looks from his father. Tu and his father Chow — San's brother — also have similar features. Directors for one of the episodes they were featured in have stated that they tried to add Bolin's big eyebrows to as many of them as possible.
- Too Dumb to Live: The entire family would have been burned alive by the riot fires that consumed much of Ba Sing Se on insistence of Grandma Yin if not for Bolin and Mako arriving with an airship and forcibly removing Yin from the building.
- Undying Loyalty: Despite how poorly the Earth Queen has treated commoners like her, Yin still holds her in high regard, even after the Queen's death.
The Grand Secretariat of Ba Sing Se under the Earth Queen.
"Don't let my reputation intimidate you. I'm still human, just like everyone else. Only more human, like extra-human, or... hmm... superhuman."
Voiced by: Sunil Malhotra
Heir to the Earth Kingdom throne, and the great nephew of the Earth Queen.
- 0% Approval Rating: Downplayed. In "After All these Years", he is shown as having both admiring fans and violent detractors supporting Kuvira. However, during his coronation, no one seems very excited about his appearance at all, while half the crowd goes ecstatic as Kuvira announces her coup.
- Big Ol' Eyebrows: Similar to Bolin, he has giant eyebrows.
- Break the Haughty: He at least starts going through this in "The Coronation", after Kuvira's insurrection. By the end of the episode, he admits to himself and Mako that he'd be a poor ruler, and deserved what happened. Whether this marks a permanent change in his behaviour remains to be seen.
- Camp Straight: He's head over heels for Asami and loves pretty ladies, but he goes to a spa.
- Casanova Wannabe: Makes repeated — and utterly lame — advances on Asami, who wants nothing to do with him.
- Cloud Cuckoolander: Overly dramatic and believes strawberry jam is blood. When he believes he is allergic to strawberries, he has to be reminded that he's actually allergic to bees.
- Expy: Has the same mannerisms and body type as Kuzco. Since his great-aunt was based off Dowager Empress Cixi, he's therefore similar to Puyi, the last Emperor of China. Puyi was also set up as a puppet leader by a foreign power, much like how the Japanese controlled Puyi.
- Government in Exile: As of "The Coronation", he's technically been officially recognised by the Grand Secretariat and the world leaders as the King of the Earth Kingdom. However, Kuvira withdrawing her support and proclaiming herself leader of the Earth Empire makes his kingship a meaningless title, and him unlikely to be welcomed back to his home country any time soon.
- Idle Rich: Spends his days enjoying the perks of his wealth and political importance, much to Mako's annoyance.
- It's All About Me: He's excited about all the pomp and circumstance of his coronation but, as Mako points out, he's done little to prepare for the task of actually ruling a country.
- Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Of a sort. Wu is a bratty, immature egotist, but he's not a complete Jerkass and can be very friendly, if not obliviously annoying, to those he really likes such as Mako. If nothing else, he's not nearly as bad as his great-aunt.
- Man Child: In "The Coronation", he drives a kid out of a "mini-Ba Sing Se" Earth Palace theme restaurant so he can sit on the throne and pretend to be king.
- Noodle People: A really slim guy.
- Pet the Dog: In "The Coronation", after hearing Mako and Bolin's fall out, he decides the best way to cheer him up is to take him to Little Ba Sing Se amusement park.
- Properly Paranoid: As much as a goofball he might be, he's very paranoid about going back to the Earth Kingdom and potentially ending up just like his great-aunt. Considering that the Earth Kingdom is filled with pillaging bandits as well as an upstart warlord attempting to build her own power base, he does have a point to be nervous.
- Puppet King: Wu has no interest in running the Earth Kingdom on his own, nor is he even really involved in his own ascension to the throne. Kuvira is doing the legwork in uniting the Earth Kingdom so the URN can install him on the throne safely. The day-to-day decisions will be handled by a cadre of advisers sent over with him by the other world leaders, leaving the Earth Kingdom effectively under the control of the other powers. Wu has shown no concern for this, placing more emphasis on the perks of being king rather than the work.
- Royal Brat: He's not particularly mean, just self-centered and hedonistic.
- Small Name, Big Ego: Wu is very self-centered and vain and only cares about the perks of royalty rather than the actual responsibility it entails. Despite his ego, however, he can take criticism as after Mako chews him out, he freely admits that he probably wouldn't be a great king.
- Upper-Class Twit: A pampered member of Earth Kingdom aristocracy, and doesn't appear to be very bright.
- Vitriolic Best Buds:
- He regards Mako as a great friend, to the point of specifically requesting him as his permanent bodyguard, and is completely oblivious to Mako's irritation with him. He's grateful, in his own annoying way, about Mako's help.
- In a similar vein, he's this to Kuvira. He tries to flirt with her earlier in "The Coronation" and gets booted out of the Presidental Suite for his trouble, but when he talks to her at the coronation and gives her the medal, he seems genuinely grateful for everything she's done; showing that while he's a stuck up brat, he does have a heart. It also makes the moment rather sad when she then declares herself the leader of the new Earth Empire and declares him to now be powerless.