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After All These Years
- In the three years since the events of Book 3, Asami has spurred Future Industries into making a rail line that connects the United Republic of Nations with the still fractured Earth Kingdom so that supplies can be moved to still recovering areas with greater ease and safety.
- Kai and Opal effortlessly defeating a gang of thugs in Yi, Kai airbending their car hard enough to flip it then Opal catching them with airbending as they're flung from the seats.
- Though she may be the Big Bad of this Book, you have to hand it to Kuvira. Taking out a gang of bandits almost twenty strong with nothing more than metalbent manacles and some effortless dodging is impressive. Then she convinces all of them to join her army while reiterating that she's the one trying to save the Earth Kingdom.
- The Governor of the State of Yi straight up refused Kuvira's offer (and it's implied that he had refused several times before) because he refused to compromise on his principles in the face of a woman whom he considered a conqueror and a warlord. Only when his people are sure to starve does he finally give in.Kai: Hey, if it counts for anything, I think you made the right decision.
Governor: Did I really have a choice?
- In roughly three years, Kuvira went From Nobody to Nightmare, changing from the captain of the guard for a metalbending city to one of the most famous/infamous people in the entire world.
- The airbending flying suits takes the best part of the staff and incorporates it into a functional uniform which gives the user complete freedom of movement without sacrificing their ability to fly.
- According to Word of God, Asami was the one to design them.
- When Kai is pushed off Lefty, and realizes that his flight suit is torn (making it nearly impossible for him to regain control and sending him spiraling), Opal makes an amazing dive after him, catching his arm on the torn side so the two of them can glide together and correct course.
- How Republic City has progressed in only three years; the citizens and spirits now live in harmony. When you just look at the new city, it makes you want to just get up and move there.
- The fact that Korra traverses what looks like the entire world, on foot and completely by herself, save for the occasional accompaniment of an incredibly disturbing vision of herself lost in the avatar state.
- Katara getting Korra walking again. This is where getting the legendary Eva Marie Saint really pays off.
- According to the sushi seller, Avatar Kyoshi once defeated a giant squid/shark hybrid with one hand.
- Korra vs. Hallucination!Korra. Yes this is, no doubt, terrifying for Korra and seeing her get beaten to a pulp is quite unsettling; but to see a fight where both participants can bend all four elements is a pretty rare + awesome treat. This is the equivalent of Thor vs. Iron Man in The Avengers.
- After three whole seasons, we finally get to see Toph, in the flesh and not in a flashback! She is every bit the mischievous, sarcastic little girl we knew and loved! Like Zuko, she still talks the same even in her old age!
- Suyin's retort to Kuvira's claims of being an agent of the people that she didn't get into power by earning the people's support, but by forcing them to join her.
- Not one to be one-upped, Kuvira gets the last word in:"Then you know what's coming for Zaofu."
- Not one to be one-upped, Kuvira gets the last word in:
- Toph wipes the floor with Korra repeatedly, even in her old age. She effortlessly dodges even airbending blasts, the very thing which Aang used to take her by surprise in "The Blind Bandit".
- Toph claims that because the swamp's roots travel all over the Earth Kingdom, she can see everything. She keeps track of her daughters in Republic City and Zaofu. Toph's generally not given over to exaggerating her abilities, which means her seismic sense is so far beyond what it was in the original series that it's not even comparable. This may also be why she can now "see" air blasts.
- Toph: You're blind compared to me.
- Toph says that neither of her daughters picked up metalbending all that well. Considering how badass both her daughters are, that says a lot about how powerful Toph has become since we last saw her. She can pick out trace amounts of poison metal in Korra's body that both Korra and Suyin missed.
- That moment when you realize that Toph is living out her "golden years" in a haunted swamp; no assisted living for this woman!
- Kuvira's refusal to hand over control of the Earth Kingdom is an Untwist, but the sheer brazenness of her actions is spectacular. She declares her intentions in the middle of Republic City during the coronation of the very king she's supposed to restore to power, with the eyes of the world press on her and the assembled leaders of the world seated behind her. She concludes by stating, clear and simple, that she will crush anybody who tries to interfere. This news is greeted with cheers by the Earth Kingdom citizens present at the coronation.
- Kuvira humiliates Prince Wu by managing to get the king-to-be downgraded from the Presidential Suite in favor of herself; petty, but it sets the tone.
- Mako calling out Prince Wu by remarking that, while Kuvira might be a power-mad tyrant, that doesn't make him good for the Earth Kingdom, and that Wu should be asking himself if he is the type of person he would want to be running the kingdom. Wu breaks down, and admits that he isn't. It takes guts to call out your boss, but it takes just as much to admit that it to yourself. It's a sheer contrast to Kuvira, who puts dissidents in camps, according to Tenzin. If he wants to be a good king, he's off to a good start.
- Korra bending the remaining metal out of her body, working through her fears to do so and entering the Avatar State.
- Korra using the Banyan Grove Tree to locate Jinora.
- Ikki plays her Earth Empire captors like a tsungi horn, casually manipulating them into not only helping her narrow down the search for Korra, but giving her some macaroons, too. She also gets them to reveal the position and movements of Kuvira's army.
- Ikki's role as the only sensible one of the air siblings. Meelo insists on turning their mission into a Macho Disaster Expedition and Jinora is too focused on trying to sense Korra's presence instead of physically looking for her. When Meelo throws away their food and insists that they go hunting, she reminds him that they don't eat meat. When Jinora and Meelo want to leave the swamp, Meelo was being a bit of a jerk and Jinora couldn't sense Korra here, Ikki insists that they keep looking. Basically, despite calling it a team effort, the air siblings would never had found Korra if it weren't for Ikki.
- Meelo's photo-realistic drawing of Korra, after being built up as something on par with Sokka's drawings. Ikki is certainly surprised and impressed.
Enemy at the Gates
- Bolin, Zhu Li, and Varrick in a mech fight with Baatar Jr. and two grunts.
- Zhu Li manages to fight off two by herself since her boss is no help; in fact, he is anti-help.
- Bolin lavabends the two mooks once his mech is taken out. He's actually a lot more dangerous outside the mecha suit than within!
- Addendum to this: the mecha suits are essentially Mk1 Iron Man suits complete with Lightning blasters, flamethrowers and retractable metal cables for assisting in movement. This makes the suits Lightning Bruisers in combat, even shrugging off Bolin's earthbending. Lavabending on the other hand averts the Convection Shmonvection trope by having it play out how it realistically would against armored soldiers.
- When the mecha tanks were first introduced, they made short work of Korra, Lin, Tenzin, and the police. Here, Bolin manages to defeat two modernized versions with one powerful lavabending move.
- You gotta give Zhu Li some credit for finally calling out Varrick for making her do all his work while not giving her an ounce of gratitude."Guards, do the thing!"
- Varrick pulling Zhu Li back into the train. Not only does this show genuine concern for someone else for the first time, it also would require a significant effort to do.
- Though it didn't work out in his favor considering he nearly died in the process, Varrick immediately realizing that the spirit vine project was a bad idea and then telling Kuvira "No" to continuing the project has to count for something.
- Korra's Character Development is awesome because she is becoming a proper avatar. At the beginning of the series, she undoubtedly would have simply charged into Kuvira's camp to take her out. Now, even in the face of Suyin's demand that she do just that, Korra firmly attempts to seek a peaceful resolution before anything else. She's looking for balance.
- While quite terrifying, the display of sheer power when Varrick's overcharged spirit vine blasts a massive hole through a military-grade train wall - and the rock formation behind it - is awesome to behold.
Battle at Zaofu
- Korra vs Kuvira!
- Kuvira delivers a Curb-Stomp Battle to Korra. Though it is sad, it is nothing short of awesome.
- Korra mops the floor with her once she goes Avatar state; the only reason she still loses is because Dark Korra briefly appears to her as Kuvira's face, shocking her enough to block the Avatar state again. Even if it was short, seeing Kuvira finally bite the dust was safistying.
- A subtle bit of awesomeness is Korra's resilience. Back in episode 1, Kuvira took down the bandits with a bunch of One Hit KOs. In her duel with Korra, however, Kuvira is forced to slam Korra to the ground eight consecutive times, and not even that stops her from invoking the Avatar State and nearly winning. Kuvira may be a metalbending prodigy, but Korra is Made of Iron.
- Kuvira conquers the city of Zaofu and earns her Magnificent Bastard credentials in record time. One episode, no less!note To elaborate, she highly anticipated that Suyin would strike first and try to stop her, so she set up a Batman Gambit to capture her, thus maintaining her Villain with Good Publicity status while making Suyin and Zaofu the aggressors and giving her a Pretext for War. That forced Korra to challenge Kuvira to a one-on-one duel for the fate of Zaofu which she loses badly. Kuvira then attempted to murder Korra, an act that would benefit her either way she would either be rid of an enemy or it would force Opal and Jinora to interfere and break the terms of their agreement, thus giving Kuvira the excuse she needs to invade Zaofu. Though Bolin and Varrick manage to escape, Baatar has seen enough of the spirit vine experiment to restart the project with Zhu Li's help. Put simply, she won decisively. Amon would be proud.
- Baatar and Huan's stand in defiance of Kuvira while the whole Zaofu kneels before her. Even more impressive is the fact they keep their calm while doing so; in fact, Baatar Jr ends up the one getting irritated and tries to order them to do it. Baatar Sr's sole reaction is to give him a sad, calm look, and tell him how disappointed he is. The Earth Empire may have won, but Baatar Jr clearly gets no satisfaction out of this victory. Probably doesnt help matters that earlier today, he was outsmarted by Varrick and was in disbelief that Varricks threat was actually serious, having been under the belief that he was bluffing. Baatar Jr had a day of getting owned today.
- Varrick makes a time bomb to take himself and his wardens with himself. When they try to stop him, he reveals that it has also a remote control, so they have to leave! Then the train blows up... While Varrick is a Jerkass and Mad Scientist, he is awesome.Baatar Jr: You're Insane!!Varrick: You knew that when you hired me!
Bolin: I just want you to know: I hate you.
- He's what King Bumi would call a "mad genius".
- Bonus points for Bolin's saving him and telling him that he sucks, after Varrick praises him for rescue.
Bolin: I can't believe Zhu Li worked for you as long as she did.
- Also, it's made clear that Varrick really was willing to kill himself to stop the technology from ever being used. Dr. Serizawa would be proud.
- Even more bonus points for the fact that Varrick was able to rig all of this despite being watched by Baatar Jr. like a hawk and forced to explain what he is doing to him. The fact that Varrick managed to get what he was doing past another man of science who should know at least the basic rudiments of what he is doing takes a lot of skill.
- Varrick started up a Fantastic Nuke with a solid kick. You have to admit, that takes a certain amount of guts.
- Opal and Jinora holding back Kuvira's entire army until they can escape with Korra. Followed by Opal doing it by herself so Jinora can contact Meelo.
- Primarily a moment of funny, but the fact that Meelo painted a portrait of himself in noble attire and lordly bearing that would be worthy of the Louvre in what must have been about one morning. As similar as they are in personality, that kid is about as far from his granduncle Sokka as you can get, artistically.
- It may not have succeeded due to a decoy, but the fact that Su, Wei, and Wing could sneak into an enemy encampment without being seen speaks volumes. They could give the Blue Spirit a run for his money.
- After three years of work in the Air Nation, Bumi's belly has gone flat as a board.
- Bolin tells Varrick that he isn't Zhu Li, after the latter insists on Bolin carrying him piggyback. Varrick understands... and asks Bolin to ride piggyback on him!
- Korra, Asami and Mako save Prince Wu from his kidnappers, working as a team after three years apart.
- Special mention to Asami, who still kept the Equalist glove as her main weapon after ''three years'', and is still very capable of kicking butt.
- Even after being apart for three years Korra & Asami still work in perfect sync. A good example of this is when during the chase Asami ignores Mako when he tells her to turn, pointing out that she knows the streets better then he does as she built most of them. When they find the truck that was holding Wu, Asami pulls the car close enough to the edge so Korra can jump on top of said truck. They do this without saying a word to each other while Mako is a step behind them.
- Korra has learned a new, extremely awesome ability. After her time with Toph, she has the ability to use spirit vines to see across distances. She even manages to use the same power without a spirit vine, in the train station!
- After the hard beating she took last episode, it was great to see that Korra is back to being able to throw down with most benders. She may not be ready for a rematch with Kuvira, but Kuvira's goons certainly came out of that fight sore. It's most impressive how fast Korra's gotten to be with her metal-bending.
- Confrontation at the checkpoint:
- Both Bolin's and Varrick's Bavarian Fire Drill acting. Varrick delivers an epic rant (as expected considering how much of a charismatic
- It took three mechs to keep Bolin from completely dominating the fight.
- Varrick saves Bolin from the mechs by MacGyvering up an EMP. Crazy Awesome!
- Bolin follows up Varrick's assistance by going back and Curb Stomping the mooks who were giving the refugees trouble.
- Bolin creates a shockwave of earth to throw back the escaped Kuvira prisoners and then makes a moat of lava to keep them back. With only his feet, since his hands were tied together. Varrick gets a few points as well for being savvy enough to know that was Bolin's plan, and hops up over the shockwave just in time.
- Steve Blum returning to the show as one of the good guys, using the exact same voice as Spike Spiegel.
- The sheer sight of water and fire benders working together against a common foe, with absolutely no in-fighting. They also deserve credit for putting up a good fight against Earth Empire soldiers.
- It helps that their leaders, Baraz and Ahnah, bear a slight resemblance to Mako and Korra or even Zuko and Katara.
- After their escape at the end of Book 2, Zhu Li carried Varrick for twenty miles on a sprained ankle; in one day!
- We finally get to see Mako being good and told off for what a jerk he was to Korra and Asami in the first two Books.
Mako: Well, me and Asami were never officially back together.Tu: Really? That again? Ya' know, it seems like you're so afraid to disappoint anyone, that you end up disappointing everyone.
- Tu even gives a surprising insight on Mako's flaw:
- Be honest, you want to see Varrick's mover adaptation of the show.
- This shot◊. Amon, Vaatu, Zaheer, and The Evil Unalaq all interacting with each other over the phone is one heck of a sight.
- Mike and Bryan's reaction to getting their budget cut and being forced to make a Clip Show. Not only did they take the opportunity to highlight the Character Development several members of the Krew had gone through, but they essentially made this show's answer to "The Ember Island Players" by first having Mako's story constantly interrupted by the fans' issues with it, and then recording all new lines to make a whole comedy sketch for Varrick's story.
- Asami adamantly refusing to let Korra be down on herself, sternly denying what Toph said about the world not needing her, and quickly pointing out all of the good things that have come from Korra's actions throughout the series.
- In particular, as a nonbender, her views on the fall of the Equalists and the resulting changes in the city carry a lot of weight.
- Tenzin coming in and acknowledging to Korra that the Avatar will never be able to completely eliminate all conflict, but the Avatar's purpose is to resolve said conflicts when they arise and restore balance.
Beyond the Wilds
- Fire Lord Izumi's refusal to participate in a preemptive strike on Kuvira proposed by Raiko due to the harsh fact that the Fire Nation has been engaged in war for years, and she's not wrong. Not only that, she explicitly states that she'll only discharge her soldiers into combat as a last resort. Note that this was Izumi's first scene actually speaking, and it's her making it clear that she won't take part in senseless fighting without reason unlike previous Fire Lords have done.
- But she still shows that she's a Reasonable Authority Figure by agreeing to provide resources to fortify Republic City's borders.
- Jinora showing off her Airbending skills when trying to escape the spirit vines, and even when she gets captured she manages to calm down enough to send a message to Korra.
- Asami putting aside her grudge with Varrick for the good of the world, but not before warning Varrick pretty well what would happen should he try anything.
- Note that she does this by twisting his wrist to make sure he's listening while she talks.
- A small one for Asami as well when she and Varrick are called the brightest minds in all of Republic City.
- Korra finally facing her fears by confronting Zaheer, and unlocking the last obstacle holding her back; herself.
- Korra also calls Zaheer out on how his actions ultimately allowed Kuvira to come to power.
- At the same time, Zaheer calling out Korra on still blaming him and her past trauma for her current struggles as an Avatar.
- Zaheer agreeing to help Korra by guiding her into the Spirit World. He flat-out admits he spends most of his time in the Spirit World while his body floats in mid-air, showing he's still got the chops he had when he faced Korra (if not more), and that even imprisoned, he remains unbound. And in spite of all that, he helps her, because he's still loyal to the cause of freedom, and the situation with Kuvira is directly opposed to his beliefs. Like him or not, you have to respect him.
- Even though they're on opposing sides. Zaheer was like a mentor to Korra.
- And while it is not shown onscreen, Zaheer watches over Korra's body while she rescues the people captured by the vines. After all the enmity between them, that means a lot.
- Korra finally manages to reconnect with Raava (who seems quite glad to be in contact with her again as well), and frees the people trapped in the spirit vines/The Spirit World. She's Back!
- Korra also calls Zaheer out on how his actions ultimately allowed Kuvira to come to power.
- While certainly harsh, Opal's verbal beatdown to Bolin's attempt to make amends did an awesome job both in animation and voice acting to display just how hurt Opal was by Bolin not listening to her, and how after all that has happened a "sorry" is not going to be enough to fix things quickly. Its also the best showcase so far of how for all her sweetness Opal still has the inner fire and snarkiness of her mother, aunt and grandmother.
- Varrick and Asami refusing to build another spirit weapon for Raiko, and Korra reiterating the fact that it would be a very bad idea.
- Credit where credit is due: with the spirit energy supercannon on the verge of self-destruction, Baatar Jr. ignores Zhu Li's call for evacuation, heads straight for the internal wiring and shuts it down. Like the man or not, you have to admit that that takes guts.
- Zhu Li's defiance of Kuvira.
Zhu Li: You're a monster. I regret nothing.
- Zhu Li has been shown as a subservient, sometimes meek, and always truly excellent employee. Kuvira is one of the scariest people walking the earth, striking terror into the hearts of every powerful person in the world. Kuvira chastises Zhu Li, and Zhu Li looks her right in the eye and says:
- Zhu Li staying that close to a megalomaniacal tyrant all this time and sabotaging the superweapon at every chance she got and willing to blow herself up along with Kuvira shows that Varrick's unassuming little assistant has giant brass ones.
- She gets high praise from Bolin earlier in the episode, when he says that "Zhu Li doesn't make mistakes". This sounds like she was playing Kuvira from the very start, instead of truly deciding to follow her and then having a change of heart.
- Toph, Bolin, and Lin saving the Beifong family from their prison.
- Three generations of the Beifong family fighting side-by-side, including Toph!
- The Beifongs knocking the spirit-cannon off-course at just the right moment. It barely misses Opal, Bolin and Zhu Li and instead blasts a hole through a mountain behind them.
- Prince Wu offers a good idea by suggesting to evacuate the citizens of Republic City in case Kuvira attacks. Mako says he ruins it by saying it was just to impress Korra.
- Suyin and Kuvira's fight. An incredibly well-choreographed fight between two expert Metalbenders. Suyin even metalbends an impromptu suit of armor, which is a perfect homage to her mother doing the same in the first series!
- Suyin, Lin, and the twins seem to be surrounded, but all of a sudden, an earth wave rolls through and knocks over a few dozen soldiers and some mecha tanks, then burries the nearside of cannon to the top. It's all done by Toph, who buys them enough time to escape. She violently moves the earth around her family for a good stretch in all directions, but the exact center circle containing her loved ones remains completely still and totally untouched. Even her family is shocked by her display of power and skill, with Lin's expression reflecting outright disbelief.
Toph: You give Metalbenders a bad name!
- To top it off, in one of the most satisfying moments of this Book, seeing as how Kuvira always seems to be on top of everything, she finally gets told off by the greatest Earthbender in the world:
- Kuvira doesn't do anything. She chooses to let them escape rather than even think of tangling with Toph Beifong. Her expression toward Toph is one of restrained defeat.
- Toph admits afterwards that she's gotten weaker with age and blew her back out with that move, yet was still able to tell off Kuvira without giving any sign of it.
- Kuvira again shows why she is such a major threat and an awesome villain. She was immediately suspicious of Zhu Li when she heard about the first malfunction and then caught her red handed moments after the second. Kuvira then fights and beats Suyin in an epic fight with no outside help or interference. Finally, Toph shows up takes out Kuvira's forces and calls her out, but Kuvira doesn't even flinch. Kuvira may be the Big Bad of the season, but she is clearly a badass.
- Kuvira blows the Krew's plans and the audience's expectations completely out of the water by fielding her Spirit Energy Super Cannon... ON A GIANT MECHA.
- Wu gives a Rousing Speech to the citizens of Republic City about how they have to evacuate in an orderly fashion, calming them down after Mako's emotionless announcement started a bit of a panic. Lin even says he might make a good king after all.
- Korra, Tenzin, Bumi, Jinora, and Kai stealthily kidnapping Baatar Jr. They're so successful at it that the guards don't even notice until they get to Raiko!
- When Earth Empire soldiers come to discuss Republic City's surrender, only to discover that Baatar Jr's been snatched, Raiko completely takes control of the situation and orders Kuvira's own soldiers around.
- Zhu Li's defection may have been fake, but she was completely serious about being done with Varrick's treatment of her, and insists they'll work as equals from now on.
- When Korra sees physical threats won't work on Baatar Jr., and Su's appeal fails, she decides to psychologically beat him down instead, with the fear he will NEVER be able to see his love Kuvira again. It works flawlessly. Baatar Jr caves immediately and tells Kuvira in a broken voice to retreat.
- Kuvira's Colossus is truly a marvel of engineering to be able to operate under it's own weight and seemingly being controlled with NOTHING but Metalbending (save for features like walking or reloading, which appear to be performed automatically.) If the rest of the series was a means of showing the Avatar world has advanced technologically since Avatar: The Last Airbender, then this is the cherry on the sundae.
- After seeing Kuvira use her Colossus to wipe out his naval fleet, General Iroh radios the president, not to ask for orders or if he should retreat, but to request permission to engage. Even though they are vastly outgunned, he doesn't want to submit his city without giving everything he has to protect it.
- Raiko - the man who had been all for launching a pre-emptive strike against a militarily superior opponent last episode - surrenders the Republic and saves hundreds, if not thousands, of lives.
- The United Forces troops never break down and run, even when the cannon is aimed right at them. Some of them don't even flinch.
- Even though Korra was able to eventually break his resolve, Bataar Jr. handles the early parts of his interrogation extremely well. When Korra goes into the Avatar State and physically hoists the chair he's tied to above her head one-handed, Bataar merely smirks and calls her bluff, saying he knows it's just an empty threat, which is enough to get Korra to back down. Even after that, he still refuses Su's attempt at a reconciliation by coldly announcing Kuvira is the only family he has now. Heartless? Yes, but it also shows that Bataar Jr. still has the Beifong spirit, however twisted it might have become.
Day of the Colossus
- The first thing we see? Bolin bending a giant wall Superman style to get the survivors out.
- The attack on the Colossus is coordinated like a boss fight in some MMORPG; a guild vs a giant monster. Bolin sinks one of its feet in a lava pit, Wei and Wing tie up its legs with metal cables similarily to destroying an AT-AT, Korra and all the airbenders try to blow it over, Bolin joins the earthbending Beifongs in toppling a building on it, and finally Korra uses an entire river to trap it. It's really just an awesome sequence, even if none of the attacks take it down.
- Meelo's idea of using balloons filled with paint to blind the Colossus didn't work, but it was still clever thinking on his part.
- Varick does the EMP thing again. This time, he hits several blocks, and whole platoons of mecha-troopers collapse into heaps.
- Prince Wu's idea of using badgermoles from the Republic City zoo to get the people out and using his singing to get the Original Earthbenders to help.
- When a trio of mechas arrives in the tunnel, Prince Wu seemingly surrenders to protect the people, and asks that his last request before being taken away is to sing a little more. It turns out that he was simultaneously distracting the guards while instructing the badgermoles to attack them. He's become dangerous!
- Varrick proposing to Zhu Li. He even picks her up this time!
- Hiroshi letting himself be killed if it means making an opening for the others.
- Ikki saves Jinora while Meelo saves Tenzin while they're falling to a sure death after getting the backlash from one of Kuvira's spirit blasts. There's Bonus points for Meelo doing it in surprisingly a mature way (ie. he didn't fartbend).
- With his bravery and his paint balloon trick, you can almost see him receiving his airbending master tattoos earlier than his big sister.
The Last Stand
- Lin and Su metalbending every important thing in the cannon arm. Kuvira has to rip the entire limb off to stop them.
- Bolin borrows Ghazan's lava shuriken move and using it to take out a mook by cutting the steam vent behind him, then finishing with a shoulder check.
- When their plan to shut down the reactor fails, Mako stays behind to lightningbend into the core until it explodes. He channels so much lightning that his sleeve bursts and he burns his entire forearm, but he blew it up. When he goes quiet for a second before declaring his intent, you can feel his dedication to people he loves.
- You really have to give Mako credit when you remember that he had to simultaneously direct the lightning away from his heart while it flowed through his body (remember Ming-Hua?). Added to all the other factors, when you realize just how close Mako came to dying this time...
- This is not just ordinary lightningbending. This is sustained lightningbending, and for once, Mako has to charge up considerably to fire off this shot when he previously could fire lightning blasts as quickly as firebending. Considering that lightningbending is an advanced technique that requires separating the yin and yang of a person's chi (failure of which results in the shot literally blowing up in your face), Mako must have been doing some incredibly complex internal manipulation, while maintaining the constant blast, while ignoring the injuries to his own body, while making sure the blast doesn't kill him. This makes him one of the greatest firebenders in the world.
- Korra's fight with Kuvira in the control room is awesome from start to finish:
- It starts with Korra figuratively kicking in the front door, giving a buildup of anticipation for what will be a spectacular throw-down. Knock-knock, Kuvira...
- Korra's first move in the fight proper is to vault in on fire jets and KO Kuvira's copilots with airblasts flat out before either knew what hit them before battering the Great Uniter with a barrage of elemental attacks. Kuvira responds by metalbending the entire control room, ripping up panels from the floor and ceiling and parts of the interface to use against her. Things get really awesome when Kuvira liquefies the console's meteorite-metal trackballs, which the two bend so skillfully it appears to really be a liquid.
- The second-to-last bit becomes doubly impressive since the liquified meteorites resemble the mercury poison the Red Lotus used on her. Rather than suffering another PTSD flashback, Korra deflects them effortlessly. It shows how far she's come since the beginning of the season.
- Here's a gif scene of Korra doing just that. Effortlessly and skillfully.
- The second half of the battle is especially awesome for one reason in particular: Korra is clearly winning. She doesn't even need to escalate to the Avatar State to do it; with her residual trauma no longer an issue, she owns the fight, effortlessly dodging and redirecting Kuvira's attacks before pummeling her with her own. Had the Colossus not been destroyed, Korra would have won decisively against someone who's at worst the third most skilled metalbender the world in a room made of the stuff. She's not gloating about it like the old Korra would, either, just powering on with this grim determination. Thoroughly incredible.
- It has to be stated; Kuvira is a woman who effortlessly took out an entire bandit gang on her own, and overpowered the daughter and student of possibly the greatest earthbender in the world, who just so happened to be her teacher...and Korra not only holds her own, but arguably outmatches her.
- An understated one for Kuvira at the end. The Colossus is wrecked, her army is in shambles, Kuvira herself is injured from the destruction of the Colossus and fleeing through the Spirit Wilds. When Korra shouts at her that it's over and she needs to surrender, Kuvira's only response is a quiet, determined "Never." That tells you everything you need to know about her in one word.
- Korra energybending the spirit vine cannon blast when it's powered by the entire Republic City Spirit Wilds, ripping a hole in reality and creating a new spirit portal. You read that right. Korra. Tanks. The Spirit Vine Cannon. While protecting Kuvira, when no one would have blamed Korra for letting her die.
- This also proves that Zaheer may very well be right; there may not be any upper limit to the power of the Avatar. Korra basically stanches a Fantastic Nuke in mid-explosion, redirects the power and tears open a new hole in spacetime (ie another Spirit Portal), and survives no worse for wear.
- This would be the moment when there is no doubt left that Korra has become a greater Avatar than Aang.
- Korra talks Kuvira down in the Spirit World, not by using her bending skills, but with compassion, leading to Kuvira's Heel Realization, after which Kuvira surrenders. Korra's come a long way from the hotheaded and brash Avatar she used to be. Korra also points out to Kuvira that they're Not So Different in a well-done way. This is the moment when Korra truly becomes greater than Aang. While her predecessor would have energybent his opponent to finish the fight, Korra empathizes with Kuvira, proving that the strength to understand and pacify one's opponent is greater than forcibly subduing them.
- After the surrender, fans were likely wondering if Su would forgive Kuvira, given her insistence that everyone deserves a chance to atone for their mistakes and we just saw her eagerly accept her son back after his Heel Realization. Instead, she coldly says "You're going to answer for everything." For all she's said before, Su knows when someone has good and well crossed a line that can't be uncrossed.
- Bolin finally using Varrick's catch phrase for all the right reasons.
- Zhu Li dipping Varrick at their wedding. Despite being surprised, Varrick is perfectly fine with it.
- Prince Wu voluntarily abdicating the throne to give the Earth Kingdom states sovereignty and appointed leadership. The guy has come a long, long way from when we first saw him.
- Mako ultimately ends the series as the only member of Team Avatar without a significant other, but he accepts it gracefully and acknowledges how his abstinence from romance has helped him grow as a human being, defying the notion that characters can only be considered "developed" if they end up romantically attached. If you believe that his talk to Korra was his way of offering understanding and support of her developing relationship with Asami, that counts as well.
- After having the world constantly crap on her for four seasons, how does Asami Sato round things off? By getting the girl. Specifically, Avatar Korra herself. Not bad at all.
- The Relationship Upgrade itself is a moment of awesome! One of the single most influential pieces of animation in the 21st century, rife with action, aesops, and life-lessons galore, and it tops it all off by confirming the most popular ship in the sequel series, which is not only a crowning moment for Bryke, but for the advancement of LGBT representation in children's media. Truly a beautiful ending to a magnificent series.