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Comic Book / The Legend of Korra: Turf Wars

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Turf Wars is a graphic novel trilogy set in the Avatar universe, following the events of Book Four of the television series The Legend of Korra. The first graphic novel trilogy based on Korra, it is written by franchise co-creator Michael Dante DiMartino, with line art by Irene Koh and coloring by Jane Bak and Vivian Ng. The series' other co-creator, Bryan Konietzko, will act as a consultant for the novels. The first issue of the series was released in comic book stores on July 26, 2017, and in mass market retailers on August 8, 2017. The second part of the series was released in comic book stores on January 17, 2018, and in mass market retailers on January 30, 2018. The final part was released on August 22, 2018, with the mass market release on September 4, 2018.

Following their trip to the Spirit World, Korra and Asami Sato discover that Republic City has fallen into a state of utter chaos. In the aftermath of the devastation caused by the battle with Kuvira's forces and the opening of a spirit portal in the middle of the city, a developer has moved to turn the portal into an amusement park, potentially severing an already tumultuous connection with the spirits. In addition, the triads have realigned and are in open conflict at the city's borders where hundreds of evacuees have relocated. In order to get through it all, Korra and Asami vow to look out for each other but must first discover how to work better as a team.


The series is followed by Ruins of the Empire, a trilogy that covers the aftermath of the Earth Empire's fall and the beginning of Kuvira's trial.

The Legend of Korra: Turf Wars provides examples of:

  • 0% Approval Rating: Raiko's ratings are actually in the negative. When running unopposed.
  • Acting Unnatural: It doesn't take long for Mako to catch on to Korra and Asami's evasiveness about what happened in the spirit world, but an interruption by Jinora postpones that conversation.
  • Alone Among the Couples: Mako. Further highlighted by Bolin asking Korra and Asami to double-date with him and Opal, as well as Bolin teasing Mako over the fact that his two exes are dating.
  • Always Save the Girl:
    • Korra abandons her attempt to talk down the Dragon-Eel spirit in order to save Asami, allowing it to attack Tokuga with impunity.
    • In part 2, Tokuga threatens to kill Asami if Korra interferes with his plan to take over Republic City by force. Korra backs down and lets Tokuga and his men advance towards Republic City with their stolen weapons.
  • Ambiguously Brown:
    • Volume 1 shows a number of African-like people during the crowd scene before Korra makes her Rousing Speech, such as the girl who needed a button for her stuffed animal's missing eye.
    • In volume 2, the security guard at Keum Tower that Bolin and Mako talk to resembles a black African. His origins are also a mystery, as no African-derived peoples or cultures have hitherto appeared in this constructed universe. A close-up on his eyes reveal that they're gold, usually found in the Fire Nation.
  • Ascended Extra: After four seasons of being either one-off threats or absent entirely, the Triads take center stage as the main villains of the comic, having taken a level in badass after spending the entire series as mere side villains.
  • Awesome McCoolname: Tokuga, the new leader of the Triple Threats and badass gangster street fighter, has a name that is just a few letters short of Tokugawa.
  • Badass Normal:
    • Tokuga isn't a bender, just good with swords, knives, and has chi-blocking training. He still managed to depose Viper and take over the Triple Threats. Though he loses the "normal" part after being mutated by the Dragon-Eel spirit.
    • Wonyong Keum, punching through a glass viewport without superpowers and later taking on an Eldritch Abomination with a fire ax.
  • Belated Love Epiphany: Asami admits that she realized how she really felt about Korra during their three years apart.
  • Beyond the Impossible: Raiko's approval rating is at -3, despite running unopposed, which he lampshades and his campaign manager just waves off.
  • The Big Damn Kiss: The series wastes very little time in having Korra and Asami have a big kissing scene in the beginning of Part 1. They kiss again after the battle with the triads, which leads to Mako, Bolin, Opal and Jinora discovering they're a couple.
  • Black-and-White Morality: This time, the writers chose this set-up to allow for a simpler story.
    • Tokuga is simply a power-hungry thug rather than a Well-Intentioned Extremist like the villains in the show.
    • The election between Zhu Li and Raiko is clearly defined as the former being both competent and selfless vs. the latter being incompetent, self-serving, and petty.
  • Bloodless Carnage: In a flashback, Tokuga is shown slashing Viper across the chest for leadership of the Triple Threat Triad, yet only water is sprayed from the wound. Viper had already been shown as part of the gang war, so he had to survive.
    • He's later stated to have been Killed Offscreen by Tokuga, presumably between issues.
  • Body Horror: Thanks to brief contact with a spirit, Tokuga's face is part fish and his right arm has turned into a tentacle.
  • Bookends: Downplayed, but the series begins and ends on the start of a new stage of Korra and Asami's relationship, both of which involve the new spirit portal. It starts moments after they entered the portal and became a couple, and ends with them watching the portal and having just admitted their love for each other.
  • Buffy Speak:
    • When describing their vacation to Mako and Bolin, the best Korra and Asami can come up with is "It was... spirity." Mako immediately catches onto their evasiveness about what actually happened.
    • Ikki gets in on the action in Part 2, describing everything in the Spirit World as "spirity", including the spirits.
  • Bullying a Dragon: Wonyong Keum is trying to turn the spirit portal into an amusement park, despite protests from the airbenders and direct threats from the spirits. Then he tries to get Korra to back off, and gets a scare from the Avatar State to show him who's boss.
  • The Bus Came Back:
    • Kya returns from the South Pole after being Put on a Bus at the beginning of Season 4 of the TV show to help out the refugees created by Kuvira's assault on the city. She's also the first person to figure out Korra and Asami are a couple, and they ask her for advice on when and how to come out about their relationship based on Kya's own experiences.
    • The Triads as a whole, and Two-Toed Ping in particular, return after their last appearance in season 2.
    • Volume 2 brings back Skoochy, who hasn't been seen early-Book 1 and performs the same role as a reluctant informant.
  • Call-Back:
    • Korra recalls how she and Asami went racecar driving back in Book 1.
    • Korra's infirmity and subsequent three-year absence at the end of Book 3 is said to be when she and Asami developed feelings for each other.
    • Korra tells the refugees that a wise man once told her "change can be good or bad, depending on your point of view." Tenzin told her this in Book 3.
    • Way back in Book 2's "Beginnings", it was shown that a spirit possessing or coming into contact with a human warped that human's physical form to resemble that of the spirit. The Dragon-Eel spirit does this to Tokuga on purpose as punishment for his attack on the portal.
    • In Part 2, Korra's "sounds perfect" response to Asami asking her out on a date is a call-back to her response to Asami's suggestion that they vacation in the Spirit World in the Book 4 series finale.
    • The Creeping Crystal Triad is named after the creeping crystals from "The King of Omashu".
    • In Part Three Tokuga is holed up in the Earthen Fire Refinery from The Rift.
  • The Cavalry: The spirits show up to fight off the Triple Threats after Korra and the airbenders fail to resolve the situation as quickly as they would have liked.
  • Cerebus Retcon: The revelation that Avatar Kyoshi was never fully accepted in the Earth Kingdom because of her sexuality, in spite of her general heroism, shows her decision to isolate herself and her people on a little island off the southern coast in a somewhat harsher light. Admittedly, the primary reason was still that Chin the Great was on the warpath and about to conquer her home, but it could theoretically have colored her decision-making.
  • Combat Pragmatist: Tokuga is a non-bender in the bender-dominated Triple Threat Triad, but makes up for it with a pair of hookswords, smoke bombs, throwing knives, and good old-fashioned chi-blocking techniques. This is also how he manages to defeat Mako during the battle in front of the spirit portal at the end of Part 1; he snags Mako's sling with one of his hookswords and uses it to toss him on his back.
  • Coming-Out Story: A subplot of Part 1 is Asami and Korra coming out as a couple to their friends and family, the first being Korra's parents, as well as learning to endure in a world where most societies don't accept them.
  • Conflict Ball: Korra grabs it in Part 1 for believing her parents, who just said how happy they were for her and Asami being a couple, are bigots for warning her that others may not be so accepting, then proceeding to leave in a huff with Asami.
  • Coup de Grâce: In Tokuga's first scene, he overpowers Jargala, the leader of the Creeping Crystal Triad and attempts to finish her off with one of these courtesy of his hookswords. The arrival of the anti-Triad taskforce interrupts Tokuga before he can deliver the finishing blow, forcing him to flee and allowing Jargala to escape.
  • Crystal Prison: Jargala carries around a jennamite crystal, last seen in "The King of Omashu", which she plans to use on Tokuga. She explains that this is where the Creeping Crystal Triad got its name. It doesn't pan out, as Tokuga is able to smash the crystal and free himself before it can cover enough of him.
  • Cut Apart: When the police prepare to raid the Triple Threat Triad's alleged warehouse, it cuts back and forth from the police outside to the unaware gangsters inside - until they actually enter the building and find nothing but mannequins and explosives.
  • Damsel in Distress: Asami is kidnapped by the Triple Threat Triad in Part 2, leading Korra to call upon Mako and Bolin's help in finding her.
  • Dark Action Girl: Jargala. Leader of the Creeping Crystal Triad? Check. Fearless even on the brink of defeat? Check. She'll fit right in.
  • Deliberate Values Dissonance: While it's somewhat softpedaled by seemingly making all of Korra's and Asami's friends and immediate family tolerant and enlightened, most of Avatar society in general is (according to Kya, at least) not very appreciative of variant sexualities. The Water Tribes believe in what amounts to Don't-Ask-Don't-Tell, the Earth Kingdom is generally conservative, and the Fire Nation was originally accepting but outlawed homosexual activities during Sozin's time on the throne.note 
  • Demoted to Dragon:
    • Wonyong Keum initially appears to be the main antagonist with Tokuga being part of Mako and Bolin's subplot. The two intersect when Keum hires the Triple Threats to intimidate the airbenders into abandoning the portal, and Tokuga forces Keum to work for him after the Avatar intervenes and he gets disfigured by a spirit.
    • Viper was leader of the Triple Threat Triad after Lightning Bolt Zolt lost his bending until Tokuga came along and reduced him to just another (dead) Mook.
  • Didn't Think This Through: Korra, being Korra, immediately wants to be open about her relationship with Asami and doesn't take her parents' well-intentioned warning of others' potential narrow-mindedness well, but it's not until she realizes she didn't take Asami's thoughts into consideration that she eases up and apologizes.
  • The Dreaded: Tokuga is feared even by his own subordinates.
  • Dual Wielding: Tokuga fights with a pair of hook swords, plus throwing knives and some chi-blocking skills.
  • Empowered Badass Normal: After his spirit induced mutation, Tokuga gains a powerful tentacle arm and becomes faster and stronger.
  • Enemy Mine: In Part 3 Team Avatar team up with Jargala and the Creeping Crystals in order to sneak through their territories so they can get the drop on Tokuga without him knowing.
  • Evil Overlooker: Tokuga on the second and third covers.
  • Evil Versus Evil: The triads are simply fighting each other for control over the remaining territory after Republic City was wrecked by the Earth Empire, hence "Turf Wars".
  • Expository Hairstyle Change: Mako has gone back to his pre-Book Four hairstyle, possibly because he's no longer working for Wu.
  • Friendly Enemy: Two-Toed Ping is happy for Bolin having found a job on the force.
  • Gayngst: The worldly-wise Asami is initially hesitant about the more reckless Korra telling people about them, fearing the setting-appropriate reactions. Korra herself gets hers later, when she eventually comes to understand that they will probably always be hated or held in contempt by many/most people in their world, and is consequently dejected that much worse from the realization.
  • Girls Stare at Scenery, Boys Stare at Girls: Partly Inverted since Korra is not a boy: Asami comments on how beautiful the sunset is and Korra agrees; only Korra is looking at Asami and not the sunset.
  • Goldfish Poop Gang: Averted. The Triads are ramped up to a serious threat, as opposed to the laughable jokes they were in the series.
  • Good Cop/Bad Cop: Bolin thinks of himself and Mako as having this dynamic, with Bolin being the good cop, only to end up being the bad cop when interrogating Skoochy. Even Bolin is surprised.
  • Have I Mentioned I Am Gay?: Kya and Avatar Kyoshi are revealed as this, as they are said (rather than shown) to be lesbian and bisexual, respectively. Averted with Korra and Asami, who are depicted as kissing several times.
  • Heel–Face Turn: Wonyong after being kidnapped by Tokuga and being saved by Korra and Asami renounces his claim to the land around the Spirit Portal in order to avoid another potential incident between humans and spirits.
  • Heroic Willpower: Downplayed, but Mako uses his still-busted arm to nullify an explosion from the bomb Tokuga left as a trap for the police. Once he's done, he immediately puts the arm back into the sling, so it's still a case of desperation rather than Hollywood Healing.
  • Heteronormative Crusader: Fire Lord Sozin decreed that same-sex relationships were criminal. It also turns out that the Earth Kingdom is pretty tough on non-hetero relationships as well.
  • Hide Your Lesbians: The four nations have different approaches to same-sex relationships:
    • The Water Tribes in general have nothing against them per se, but they don't approve of open relationships, believing that they should be kept under wraps. This first comes up when Korra's parents are happy for the couple, but Tonraq expresses well-intentioned concerns about the two of them coming out publicly.
    • The Air Nomads traditionally used to be carefree about it. And for her part Jinora seems delighted.
    • The Fire Nation were largely tolerant until Sozin took over and made them illegal.
    • The Earth Kingdom were more intolerant of it. Despite Kyoshi being openly bisexual, she wasn't able to effect any change. Asami points out it's been a long time and hopefully things have moved on since then.
      • In most cases it's justified by Fantasy Counterpart Culture: Buddhist/Tibetan monks (whom Air Nomads are based on) forbid procreation but not sex, so same-sex relationships were perfectly allowed, while the Fire Nation is an Expy of Japan, which was tolerant of same-sex relationships (called "Wakashudo" and seen as a honorable practice in the warrior class) until Emperor Meiji took over and westernized the country.
  • Hostage Situation: In Part 3, Tokuga refuses to let the people in the neighborhoods he attacks evacuate, so the police won't risk attacking him as long as they're in harm's way.
  • I Always Wanted to Say That: Bolin, after getting to shout, "Freeze! Police!"
  • I Have Your Wife: Asami gets captured at the end of Part 2 by Tokuga, who uses her to keep Korra from interfering in his conquest of Republic City. Part 3 is about the couple working together to rescue her in the Spirit World.
  • Immediate Sequel: The comic begins with Korra and Asami arriving in the Spirit World, right where the series left off.
  • Inherent in the System: While the comic blames specific villains for the Fire Nation's anti-homosexual policies (i.e., it was supposedly all Sozin's fault), it applies a more realistic take to the Earth Kingdom: there, it's simply the conservative and conformist culture in general that isn't accepting of any such deviations from its norms, irrespective of evil overlords. Even Avatar Kyoshi, who is now said/rumored ("by all accounts," according to Kya) to have entertained same-sex liaisons herself, proved unable to effect change on this point—despite otherwise defeating whole armies, instituting the Dai Li and generally being the power behind the throne in her time.
  • Innocently Insensitive: Before they return to Republic City Korra takes Asami to the South Pole so they can tell her parents the good news about their new relationship. Asami is clearly a little uncomfortable about the idea but Korra is too excited to notice. To her credit Korra does apologize for not thinking about Asami's feelings after she explains why she was hesitant to come out to Korra's parents and Asami assures her that she is just as excited for their relationship just to be a little more careful next time.
  • It's Personal: Tokuga holds a grudge against Korra at the end of Part 1, blaming her for his transformation into a spirit hybrid after assuming she deliberately called the spirits and ordered them to attack him. He witnessed her talking to and following the spirit that attacked him, but was too far away to hear what actually happened. In Part 2, Tokuga continues blaming her for his transformation, telling Korra that her actions have consequences...before revealing that he has captured Asami.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Skoochy is revealed as this as he fled on sight of Mako and Bolin's police car and initially is tight-lipped about info on the Triple Threats, but opens up when Mako points out that lives are on the line.
  • Jerkass:
    • Wonyong Keum wastes no time trying to exploit the spirit portal for his personal gain, tries to force the airbenders to leave, and even thinks he can make the Avatar do what he wants. When that fails, he hires the Triple Threats to drive the airbenders away from the portal.
    • The Spirits take a hardline stance against humanity with no negotiation, no attempts to compromise, and when they decide that the Avatar has failed—after offering very little time for her to sort things out—attack indiscriminately, permanently mutating Tokuga. They then enact a scorched earth campaign around their side of the portal, seeding the area with spiky vines that ensnare anyone who comes too close, preventing further contact.
  • Jerkass Ball: Korra grabs it early on after coming out to her parents, accusing Tonraq of being narrow-minded and storming out of the house when he and Senna warn her that not everyone will accept her being bisexual, nevermind that he himself had no problem with it. Thankfully, she throws it away after a talk with Asami.
  • Jerkass Has a Point:
    • Wonyong Keum may be trying to profit off the spirit portal, but he is right that he owns the land it's on, spirit portal or not. Korra even acknowledges this by trying to get Raiko to purchase the land from him so the city can turn it into a sanctuary for the spirits. Additionally, he argues that everyone deserves access to it, which Korra previously argued to the spirits. The spirit wilds had become such a place in her absence, and she was on the verge of seeing his point before Asami interrupted. Obviously, this is one of the extremes Korra has to balance as the Avatar.
    • Raiko also has a point that the recent war has left Republic City basically broke so he can't afford to spend money on things that don't benefit the city or its citizens, which doesn't include the spirits.
  • Karma Houdini Warranty: Raiko has always been an obstructive dick to Korra and friends throughout the series but has gotten away with it because he is the president. In this series his decision to surrender to Kuvira has caused his popularity to plummet and his attempts to double down on his dickery only alienates him further from the main cast. After he is filmed hightailing it away from the Spirit Portal during the Tokuga crisis and Zhu Li is shown bravely risking her life to save a child from the poisonous gas she wins the election and Raiko losses his presidency.
  • Kicking Ass in All Her Finery: Korra spends the last quarter of Part 2 in a formal dress very similar to the one she wore at Varrick and Zhu Li's wedding (if not the exact same one), having planned to wear it for a date with Asami. She ends up taking on the Creeping Crystals and Tokuga in separate fights while wearing it.
  • Know When to Fold 'Em:
    • Tokuga pulls a Smoke Out when Bolin cuts the hooks off his swords with a lava shuriken.
    • Jargala reluctantly decides to retreat at the suggestion of one her mooks when Tokuga shows up at her hideout with a small force of mechs and tanks.
  • Let No Crisis Go to Waste:
    • Tokuga takes over the Triple Threat Triads after Kuvira's failed invasion and proceeds to go on a turf war against the other gangs and eventually tries to take over the city itself while Republic City's resources are still stretched thin from the recent crisis.
    • When the airbenders decide to non-violently protest Raiko cordoning off the spirit portal, Raiko sees it as a good opportunity to distract from his other problems. However, Zhu-Li came to the same conclusion and brought her own camera crew to protest with the airbenders.
  • Love Confession: During Part 2 it's implied that Korra was going to give one to Asami during an intimate moment in her office but she gets nervous and leaves instead. At the end of the trilogy Korra tells Asami she loves her and Asami responds in kind.
  • Lured into a Trap: Tokuga allows the police to get a lead on his hideout, which he has already evacuated and filled with dummies and bombs to take out the task force tracking him. Mako manages to block the explosion.
  • Mirror Character: The way Korra acts when dealing with Raiko in volume 2. Not only does she try to intimidate the democratically elected President of the Republic and order him around, when one of his aides tells her that she needs to make an appointment to talk with him, she casually metalbends a steel gag around his mouth, leaving him panicking trying to remove it. All of this makes her look very much like Kuvira, the metalbending Evil Overlord of the last season, who used a very similar Darth Vader-ish leadership style—which becomes a darkly ironic echo of Korra's own words to the effect that she and Kuvira aren't so different after all, back in the series. Fortunately, unlike Kuvira, she gets more sad than angry in volume 2 when Raiko turns a crowd against her and backs down despite Asami and Tenzin sticking up for her.
  • Miss Exposition: Kya, with most of her dialogue used for a lecture to Asami and Korra on how all the cultures of the setting view lesbianism and homosexuality.
  • Moment Killer:
    • In the first issue, Jinora interrupts Korra and Asami's coming out to Mako and Bolin, though unintentionally and not for comedic reasons.
    • In the second issue, Korra, herself does this during the intimate moment with Asami where she avoids saying "I love you" to instead "leave you to your work" when Asami was both eager to hear those words and up for something more.
  • Never Accepted in His Hometown: Avatar Kyoshi suffered this fate due to her bisexuality. In spite of her being a powerful royal advisor, not to mention legendary hero who defeated the setting's resident Qin Shi Huangdi expy and brought centuries of peace, Kyoshi was apparently never fully accepted but only tolerated in the Earth Kingdom, because of its heteronormative culture. Asami and Korra are saddened by this, as they hear Kya tell the story.
    If Avatar Kyoshi couldn't find acceptance, what are the chances you and I will?
  • New Job as the Plot Demands: Bolin has once again changed his career, this time joining his brother on the police force. It's more justified this time; Bolin always loved fighting injustice and helping people, a cause he felt was betrayed when he previously fought for Kuvira. Come the end of Part 3, he resigns from the police as well.
  • Nice Job Breaking It, Hero: For a given value of "hero", the Dragon-Eel Spirit doing the usual spirit thing of disfiguring a mortal, this time Tokuga, only makes him into an Empowered Badass Normal, who is faster, stronger, and smarter than he was before. Had the spirit not done it, he'd remain just another Badass Normal criminal Korra could mop up and call it a day.
  • No-Sell: Tokuga is immune to his poison gas because he's half-spirit.
  • "Not So Different" Remark: After years of always being told she was too Hot-Blooded, Korra cites the day Asami took her racing as proof the latter could be just as intense as me" and was relieved by that fact.
  • Off-Model:
    • In various ways, the art in the comic is different from the series. One flagrant example is that Korra's cyan eyes are often colored a very dark blue, seemingly even brown in some panels.
    • When Asami and Wonyong Keum converse in captivity in Volume 3, the artist apparently forgot to draw in her nose in several panels, which gives her face a somewhat bizarrely inhuman appearance. In another example in the same sequence, her mouth is drawn wide open without even a hint of teeth, making her look toothless.
  • Open-Minded Parent:
    • Tonraq and Senna at least appear to have no problem with the Korra-Asami relationship when they are told of it, and indeed seem to support them. Though Korra nonetheless rages against them and calls them narrow-minded when they are worried for her and Asami and cautiously warn them that others might not be so tolerant.
    • According to Kya, who is revealed to be a lesbian, her father Aang was nothing but supportive of this given Air Nomad culture.
  • Pet the Dog: Downplayed. Raiko is reluctant to take credit for helping stop Kuvira, acknowledging that Korra did the work. Later subverted as it's shown that he's still more than willing to throw her under the bus if it benefits him, as he does when he tries to get displaced people to blame Korra for all their problems and thus make himself slightly less unpopular.
  • Powerful and Helpless: Avatar Kyoshi is revealed to have been bisexual, and even if she was one of the most influential and powerful past Avatars that have appeared on-screen, all of her efforts to get rid of (or at least reduce) the Heteronormative Crusader attitude of the Earth Kingdom during her lifetime were for naught — society was (and to Korra's sadness, still is) just that stubborn.
  • Rage Breaking Point: Korra was doing a pretty good job staying calm during her confrontation with Tokuga at the end of Part 2...until he reveals he has captured Asami. After which she loses it and charges at Tokuga with a look of pure rage, screaming "WHERE'S ASAMI?!"
  • Rated M for Manly: Raiko's reelection poster has him with an open shirt punching out the Colossus, with the slogan "Vote Raiko—He'll wallop tyranny with a knockout blow!" Considering his popularity is in the gutter because he surrendered to Kuvira, he has to appear tough somehow. Korra wastes no time mocking it when she finds it on his desk.
  • Screw the Rules, I Have Connections!: Lin is unwilling to go after Keum without hard evidence because he's politically connected.
  • Screw the Rules, I'm Doing What's Right!: After nearly being blown up by Tokuga's trap, Mako decides to question Keum despite the lack of evidence. It leads to him discovering that Keum has been missing for several days.
  • Sequel Hook: While his plan to take over Republic City may have failed Tokuga escapes into the Spirit World and Korra notes that he will likely be back. After losing the election Raiko is shown glaring out of a window into the Republic City skyline implying that he wont be taking his loss lying down. And while the Dragon Eel Spirit agrees to let this incident go after Wonyong forfeits his right to the land around the Spirit Portal he lets Korra know that the spirits will be watching and wont hesitate to intervene again.
  • Shipper on Deck: By the end of Part 1, Tonraq, Senna, Kya, Jinora, Opal, Mako and Bolin all know that Korra and Asami are together. To varying degrees, they're all happy for the couple (though Mako's somewhat of a downplayed example).
  • Shooting Superman: Tokuga tosses throwing knives at a spirit, which have no effect on a being with no tangible form.
  • Skewed Priorities: Raiko cares more about getting reelected than the housing crisis, and his campaign manager actually has to point out to him that dealing with the latter will help him with the former.
  • Smoke Out: Tokuga carries smoke grenades on him.
  • So Proud of You:
    • Two-Toed Ping is proud of Mako and Bolin for having made something of themselves.
    • It goes unsaid, but Tenzin is visibly proud of Korra's Rousing Speech to the refugees in the camp.
  • Sudden Sequel Heel Syndrome: Downplayed somewhat with President Raiko, who is certainly far more villainous than in the series. While he was often at odds with Korra and her friends from the very first, previously he was more of a well-intentioned Obstructive Bureaucrat who always seemed to care first and foremost about what was best for the Republic and its citizens. By contrast, the comics portray him as a standard Sleazy Politician who cares nothing for the dispossessed people, only about staying in power, to the point of seeming to sabotage relief efforts for political gain. For the guy who was prepared to surrender his office to Kuvira rather than fight to keep it mere weeks of in-universe time before in the last season, specifically in order to spare his citizens from the devastation and horrors of war, this is a major downgrade.
  • Surprisingly Realistic Outcome:
    • Having grown up in near isolation from the rest of the world, it doesn't occur to Korra that some people might take issue with her relationship with Asami.
    • Kuvira attacking Republic City with the Colossus, and the attempts of the heroes to stop it, destroyed a lot of the city. Both the police station and city hall are out of commission, with their respective staff having taken up temporary headquarters in residential areas. The government has basically no money thanks to the massive cost of reconstruction. Hundreds of people have been left homeless and are set up in tents city outside the city. And with the police stretched thin and communication spotty thanks to the spirit portal, the bending gangs have grown in power.
    • The mere existence of the new spirit portal becomes a point of contention; relationships between spirits and humans may have improved greatly since Avatar Wan's time, but they're still not perfect, and the spirits aren't happy about having another entrance to their world in the middle of a populated human city. And while Korra, Asami and the Air Nomads are willing to watch over the portal and prevent its exploitation, the land around the portal did have an owner before it became "sacred", who would want to see a return on his investment.
    • A couple can sometimes be more effective when they're not working alongside one another. While at the refugee camp, Asami declines Korra's request to join her on her visit to the refugees, on the basis that she'd be unnecessary with the Avatar there. Instead she spends her time drawing up housing development plans in order to get the refugees back into proper accommodation, which ends up fitting in nicely with Korra's promise to find homes for them all in her Rousing Speech to them.
    • Mako's arm is still injured. Only a few days have passed since the wedding, so no Hollywood Healing.
    • Korra and Asami may have become a couple, but that doesn't mean that they'll immediately start being physically intimate with one another, as demonstrated when Asami makes a move on Korra in her office. Different people will become more comfortable with physical intimacy at different speeds.
    • Asami learns the hard way that dating a powerful figure like the Avatar will make you a target for those seeking to exploit and manipulate her.
  • Take That, Critics!:
    • Besides outright anti-gay stuff, the major fan criticism of the Korra-Asami pairing is the (alleged or real) nigh-complete lack of foreshadowing and prior character development leading up to it. Here, Korra and Asami effectively argue at some length against that as they reminisce about their past, agreeing on how they felt special together (but maybe didn't quite understand it right away) from the very first time they met, and how they grew closer with time, as well as why they nevertheless would never clearly state their feelings before this comic came out.
    • As for the anti-gay stuff, the character responses to in-setting expressions of that can also apply to the fan critics. Asami is happy that they can finally be together, but also sad, since she knows that "not everyone is going to see it that way." And Korra rages against narrow-minded and intolerant people who won't accept them.
    • And they both make a pledge that they want to be together, that's the way it is, and that won't change no matter what anyone thinks about it. It's a kind of strong character moment in-story, but on the meta-level it can also be read as the writers doubling down on the artistic direction they chose, and damn the real-life bigots.
    • In Volume 2, one of the dispossessed citizens complains that "Avatar Korra ruined my life!" In-story, it refers to (accidentally) destroying that family's home in the fight with Kuvira, but the phrase as such has been used ironically in real life by Konietzko and his supporters to mock exaggerated fan complaints about his handling of the Korra series.
  • Tempting Fate: Asami assures Korra that she can handle herself after a run-in with the Creeping Crystals. So even without the preview summaries, it's not really surprising that she's kidnapped by the end of the same book with Part 3 being about rescuing her.
  • That's No Moon!: Korra and Asami go mountain climbing in the spirit world, only to find that the "mountain" is actually a large spirit that doesn't take kindly to their presence.
  • Time Skip: After the climax, there's a three-week time skip to election night.
  • Trailers Always Spoil: The summaries already gave away plot twists such as Zhu Li running against Raiko and Asami getting kidnapped.
  • Two-Faced: Tokuga gets this inflicted on him by an angry spirit.
  • Underestimating Badassery: "You're going to need some bigger rocks," Tokuga tells Bolin. One lava shuriken later:
    Bolin: You're going to need some new swords!
  • Villain: Exit, Stage Left: Tokuga flees into the spirit world when he plan to gas the area around the portal falls through.
  • Visionary Villain: Tokuga explains in the second volume that he realized his previous goal of taking turf from the other Triads was much too small and petty. Instead, he forms a plan to seize equipment left behind when Kuvira's army surrendered, and then use that to become the dominant force in the Republic, able to overpower the police and go toe to toe or better with the United Forces.
  • Watching the Sunset: Korra and Asami in Part 1, although Korra is looking at Asami instead of the sunset.
  • Wham Episode:
    • Part 1 ends with Tokuga, freshly mutated by the spirit's possession, storming into Keum's office and forcibly seizing control of his assets.
    • Part 2 has Zhu Li deciding to take on Raiko in the United Republic presidential election. Tokuga and the Triple Threats meanwhile make plans to conquer Republic City itself. To this end they kidnap Asami to prevent Korra's interference, and raid a weapons depot to steal a load of tanks, mecha-suits and airships left over from Kuvira's failed invasion. The final panel shows them advancing on Republic City in their new hardware.
  • The Worf Effect: Twice in succession during Team Avatar's first fight with Tokuga's gang. Tokuga is able to easily defeat Mako with his hook-swords since Mako's injured, only to have his swords quickly sliced apart by Bolin's lava shuriken.
  • Worf Had the Flu: Mako takes on Tokuga while still sporting an injured arm, which quickly ends in his loss.
  • Wrecked Weapon: Tokuga's hookswords get destroyed by Bolin hurling a lava shuriken at them during the melee in front of the Republic City spirit portal.
  • You Never Asked: Korra and Asami are shocked when Kya casually reveals that she is gay after talking about going on a romantic getaway with her first girlfriend. Kya says that all of her friends and family know its just not something that she publicly announces.

Alternative Title(s): The Legend Of Korra


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