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    Toph's Eyes at Episode 29 
  • During her tutoring for Aang's earth-bending, when she encased herself in rock as armor, why did she bother keeping her eyes from being covered from rock? She's blind, right? Why would she need that part exposed? It's not like she feels vibrations through only her eyes, right?
    • It's an animation mistake. They designed a rock armor that only had a mouth hole, so she could breathe, but the animator put in the eyeholes.
      • So you're saying that for every picture made to make that animation, that person did not once think "Hm, maybe her eyes aren't her mouth, and she's also blind." How could they have missed this?
    • The same way an animator gave Toph six fingers in Korra. Mistakes happen. If you have to draw something several hundred times, you're probably not stopping at each one to analyze it.
      • That's just it, though. You can't just draw six fingers on a character 50 times without realizing you made a mistake. Unless a drone or an A.I. does auto-drawing, I don't see how this is possible. It does not make sense.
      • Apparently you can, because, again, it happened. People make mistakes, and will go on autopilot just copying things, especially if you have to draw it several hundred times. Let it go, man.
      • Don't tell me to let it go, and don't make this about me. That aside, it's really sad that they have to literally autopilot themselves to get through every image after another for shows like this. "No point in correcting errors, we ain't got time for that!"
      • Every single job on the planet that does that kind of repetitive action goes into autopilot. I say "let it go," because you asked a question, you got an answer, and then you rejected the answer because you seem determined to drag this out and find some kind of direct fault with someone. You act as if it can't be a simple animation error, it has to be them maliciously not giving a shit. There's no reason this topic had to go past the second bullet point.
      • Or we can take a third option and say that the animator wasn't familiar with the character. Toph had only appeared in two episodes prior to episode 29. The majority of the animation was outsourced to JM Animation, DR Movie, and MOI Animation, all studios in South Korea, so it's entirely possible that a worker looked at the storyboard and tried to fix what he perceived as a mistake.
    • She didn't make the hole so she could see him. She made it so he could stare into her eyes and know pure terror.
      • Or maybe it's the opposite and she doesn't want to creep everyone out with her almost blank slate mask.

    The Ember Island players question 
  • Unless Aang and the others told their adventures to random strangers, how was this play able to almost accurately tell their adventures? I get that it's a Fire Nation play, and possibly some people stalked them, but... seriously, how?
    • Apparently their information came from high-risk traders (The Waterbending Scroll), Fire Nation soldiers (every episode with soldiers), and a surprisingly knowledgeable merchant of cabbage (every scene with the Cabbage Guy). So, yeah, coupled with the fact that Aang and friends probably did tell their adventures to random strangers (remember those prisoners from Avatar Day?) the Ember Island Players could very easily get plenty of information correct, Zuko's scar notwithstanding.

     Cutting the line, killing the princess 
  • During the escape on the Gondola, the warden ordered his guards to cut the line, and he did so while Crown Princess Azula was on top of the gondola! Why would he make such an order that would kill even a member of the Fire Nation Royal family, regardless of whether or not he knew that Azula was able to safely get off? Otherwise, it would mean that the Warden is willing to sacrifice every piece on the chess board, including himself and the royal family as long as his prisoners don't escape alive. The warden is so obsessed with maintaining his no escape record, and made it clear that he would do anything to keep it that way—he wouldn't care if he or anyone else perishes with the prisoners. The guards did question this, being concerned that the Warden would get himself killed, but they didn't even show concern that Azula would get killed as well.
    • Azula had just flown with firebending. The warden either knew she could escape and wasn't worried about her, or figured he'd be dead anyway and wasn't worried about repercussions. Either way, he obviously didn't feel the need to protect her. And it's not like Azula is a character who ever inspired overwhelming loyalty.
      • Given that the warden is so obsessed with maintaining his no escape record, it seems like Azula's presence would not deter him from ordering his guards to cut the line. That being said, he would not care whether or not Azula had the ability to safely get off. The warden is obviously not the type to give a damn about anything, not even anyone's safety nor Azula's firebending abilities, nor the consequences of killing the Crown Princess if it happens. It would mean that he is not very loyal despite him bowing down to her with respect. You pretty much are supporting the idea that if he is willing to go down with is escaped prisoners, then he wouldn't care if Azula perishes with him or not. If Azula perished with him, then he knows he can't be punished for disloyalty. By making an order that had the chance of killing a member of the royal family in the process, the warden was still breaking the law.
    • In essence, it's doubtful he cared about Azula's life more than his own and if the line was cut he'd be dead, so it's not like he can be punished.
      • Also, would Ozai really punish the warden for causing Azula’s death while trying to avoid the escape? I doubt it, Ozai doesn’t care for his family that much and probably would give a medal to the warden for fulfilling his duties with such a devotion. Whether the warden knew that is another story.
      • Actually, I'd argue he might IF and only IF it cost him his only other heir to the throne. Even if he doesn't love Azula, it'd be weird to lose the only heir to the throne. Then again, a bastard like Ozai wouldn't hesitate in making another if necessary.
    • In the warden's defense, he knew that Azula had gotten onto the gondola somehow, since she wasn't on it when they left. He could just figure that she'd be able to get off the same way. And, again, if the gondola goes down, he's going down with it. Ozai can't punish him if he's dead.

  • The "getting crap past the radar" section says that there's occasional breast jiggling in the show. Proof, anyone?
    • The Beach episode is the only example I could think of.

     Extent of Katara's healing abilities 
  • Ok, I am seriously confused over Katara's healing abilities. Why is she able to save Aang, who technically was dead, after Azula shot him with lightning, but not able to save Jet, who was still alive? I really don't get that at all. On a somewhat related note, why does Aang die almost immediately from Azula's lightning, but Zuko doesn't? Is it because of his partial re-directing?
    • Katara used the special water from the pool at the North Pole. She didn't appear to have realized that she could do that with the water until the finale, as she'd had some time to think about it, whereas she didn't have time to consider the possibility while escaping from the prison under Laogai. As for Zuko, yes, it was the redirection that saved him. I thought the series made that fact obvious.
    • Yeah I don't why I asked that. I was half-asleep when I wrote that...

     The Fire Nation being proactive 
  • So, why isn't the Fire Nation as proactive at capturing the heroes, especially in later seasons (particularly Season 2)? If anything, all Fire Nation personnel do is just wait for the Gaang to run into them, then they skirmish them, and lose. They only run into them by chance without really expecting them. That's not very coordinated, let alone good preparation. Why don't they, for example, pull Batman Gambits or set up traps to draw them out of hiding, which sounds like Azula's thing? While rebellion is inevitable, the Gaang is more principled than other cells, and they present a specific threat; I highly doubt Ozai or Azula would not be concerned with what their officers allow them to represent by failing to stop them—hope. The Gaang's actions have no doubt led to whispers about them in the streets, and in time, such whispers would spark relief in something other than the strength and security of the Fire Nation, and that is something Azula cannot have.
    • Flying Bison in an age and time in which air travel (which the Fire Nation doesn't mass produce until book 3) is an amazing way to get away from your hunters unless they're damn determined to catch you like Azula was. And by plans not being taken, which ones? The drill to get into Ba Sing Se which failed due to their interference? The relentless chasing of the group; only to stop when Azula was vastly outnumbered in the abandoned town? The manipulation of the Dai Li? The impersonation of the Kiyoshi Warriors? The re-recruitment of a Chi-Blocker and a Knife Thrower? Plans were made. The Fire Nation didn't go whole hog against the Avatar because of their superiority over everyone else (character flaws are not plot holes) that they didn't need to worry about him all that much as, Avatar or not, they would kill him. Azula was only chasing the avatar as a means of a vanity project to lord over Zuko's head, as it would be one more thing she could have over him which is also an Azula thing to do.

     Leaving the North 
  • According to Avatar Extras, both the Southern Water Tribe AND the Foggy Swamp Tribe are descended from groups who left the Northern Water Tribe because they objected to the womanizing aspects of their culture e.g. the WHOLE culture. So in all the decades or centuries or whatever of Water Tribe history, during which entire colonies-worth of people packed up and left in disgust, NO-ONE THOUGHT OF CHANGING THE RULES OF THE NORTH TRIBE!!! Not the people who were leaving, not the ones left behind, both sides of the issue automatically decided to just say good-bye and return to the old system. WHAT?!?
    • Everyone who disagreed with the customs left instead of fighting against it, so nothing really changed. Sort of like if all the black people in America were to move back to Africa instead of fighting for civil rights.
    • Some of them did. It's why Liberia's capital is called Monrovia. It didn't work out so well.
    • Setting aside race relations, dissident groups either getting 'encouraged' to leave or choosing to do so has happened many times on Earth. The North American colonies and Australia are two notable examples. In the Northern Water Tribe's case, the dissidents leaving meant that the social pressure for gender equality also left (until Katara overturned things).
    • Perhaps the OP isn't familiar with a little place called Saudi Arabia. As of 2012, it's still an absolute monarchy without even the pretensions of civilian oversight, where women are forced by law to cover from head to toe in black (making Iran's dress code positively liberal in comparison) and people can be executed for 'sorcery' just because a citizen feels ill in their presence. Try going over there and changing the rules of that tribe, and you'll either be deported, if you're lucky, or beaten to death on the streets by the fanatical religious militia for challenging their 'traditional values'. If anything, the Northern Water Tribe's sexism was far too easily put aside.

     Sokka's rescue plan 
  • I understand Sokka wanted to save his father and loves him dearly, and I have a lot of respect for that, but I seriously have two big problems with it. First of all, was Hakoda really in that much more danger than anyone else who was captured because he was a leader and at the Boiling Rock? If yes, I can totally understand the urgency. However, what I really don't get is why he was about to go all alone until Zuko made him accept help. Think of how much easier it would have been if the gang had worked together. Somehow, I don't think Aang practicing Firebending was worth leaving him behind...
    • Sokka was engaging in a personal mission. He doesn't want to bring anyone else into it, and is reluctant to bring Zuko along. Besides, Toph and Aang are not precisely the most subtle of people to bring on a covert infiltration. Sokka also probably didn't want to risk their lives on what might be a boondoggle.
    • Well one, honor. Because everyone's pretty obsessed with it in this show. And two, it was hard enough smuggling two people into the prison. You think four, Aang and Toph being small kids (and thus not being able to disguise as guards), would be easier?
    • As for "Was his father in that much danger?", Sokka didn't set out to save only his father originally. He asked Zuko where the war prisoners as a whole would be taken, and Zuko told him the likeliest answer was to the Boiling Rock. They went there in order to save whoever they could find. Neither knew that only the two leaders were being held there.

     The Moon and the Ocean 
  • So, why did the Moon and Ocean spirits give up their immortality, anyway? So they could swim around in a small pond for the rest of eternity? Especially since their continued existence is crucial to the balance of the world, why would they make themselves mortal so that they could be killed and upset the balance?
    • Spirits can only manifest on and affect the mortal plane on the solstices. They needed to become mortal to have a lasting effect.
      • Doesn't that imply that the Sun also has a physical form somewhere on the mortal plane. as in some kind of animal seeing not just the Sun in the solar system, it would have made for a good plot if somebody would try to do something to the source of the bad guys powers it would give Aang and co a lot of interesting choices.
      • That could be a possibility, but it also implies that the Sun is an just star in the sky, while the moon is a result of the spirits intervening on behalf of humans.
      • I think both are true. When the Moon spirit was mortally wounded the (lower case) moon didn't just vanish, it was still physically there... it just lost it's spiritual power and influence. Presumably, while it would still orbit the planet there would be no more tides. So hypothetically speaking, capturing or killing the Sun spirit would probably make sunlight go blood red or all chalky gray, take out the Firebender's powers, and likely also stop warming the planet.
      • But Iroh killed the last Dragon, he's famous for it through both the Fire Nation and Earth kingdoms, and likely many people who travel between the Water Tribe and Earth Kingdom.note 
      • It doesn't matter if Iroh killed the dragons because the dragons aren't spirits. They, like Firebenders, have merely learned to manipulate a power granted by a spirit (or are innately capable of it, to be more precise). Killing them has no more effect on Firebending than killing every beaver would affect knowledge of how to build dams. As long as someone carries the knowledge, it will persist, even if the original source of that knowledge is long dead. Now, if they managed to kill the sun, that would do away with Firebending altogether.
      • Yeah, but remember how everyone except Zhao thought destroying the moon was an absolutely HORRIBLE idea? How Iroh told him he'd basically be causing Armageddon and that killing the moon would have way too many disastrous effects on the world for it to possibly be remotely worth taking the Northern Water Tribe? And you think they should do the exact same thing to the sun? The source of all life on earth?
      • I don't think anyone was earnestly suggesting that killing the sun was a good idea. I think they were just saying that the dragons are not the vessel the sun spirit resides in (potentially).

     Other influences 
  • Why does no one seem to pick up on the MIDDLE EASTERN cultural influences? Most people pick up on the Imperial Chinese/Japanese/Tibetan influences in the culture of Avatar but am I the only one to notice the Indian and (before Islam)Turkish/Arabian references? For example: Fire Nation clothing.
    • People keep hearing about the "obvious" Asian influences, so that keeps getting passed on as the "absolute truth" i.e. all influences are Asian. If/where there are Turkish/Arabian references are not as noticeable because of the sheer amount of Asian influences referenced by various people.
      • There are a few Arabic, Turkic, and Indian influences - the Sandbenders, some of the clothing, the Guru and the chakras, the word Agni - but they overall design work is East Asian. Then again, there's American White Trash culture with the waterbending Swamp Tribe, and the original Firebending tribe is Mayincatec for some reason. It's still rude to act like everyone else is so stupid for not pointing these things out (And Arabs, Turkic peoples, Indians? All Asian. it's the swamp tribe and the Incan firebenders that stick out).
      • As the above troper stated, India is a sub-continent of Asia, which makes Indians and the surrounding peoples Asians by default. They share some common ancestry even if the cultures are somewhat different. (Note that Buddhism, a predominately "Asian" religion/philosophy, was founded in India... And that the surrounding Islamic cultures used to follow more "Asian" cultures and religions before Islam took hold) Also, the Swamp Tribe could easily be based off the Vietnamese River People with the Southern swamp culture/mannerisms thrown in for jokes.
      • As for the matter of the Sun Warriors, they're not necessarily Mayincatec. To quote from the Fantasy Counterpart Culture page: The one Mayan-looking building in the Sun Warrior compound is more likely based after the Candi Sukuh in Indonesia, the rest of the compound borrows architectural styles from places like Angkor Wat and Phanom Rung. And the clothing worn by the Sun Warriors seems also derived from Southeast Asia, particular the headdresses which resemble Iban warrior headdresses. (So yes, all influences are Asian.)
      • Wrong! Wrong! Wrong! Word of God is that the Sun Warriors and the city are based on Mayan and Aztec Indians. And the show has plenty of non Asian influences two biggest (but not only) are the four elements are Greek and Aang is a Messiah!
      • Where exactly was this word of God stated? The fact that you're suggesting the four elements are Greek-inspired and that Aang is a "messiah" (critical misunderstanding of what the term means) implies you have little idea of what you mean.
      • The art book says that the designers looked at Mayan ruins for inspiration when designing the Sun Warrior city.
      • The Chinese "elements" are Fire, Earth, Metal, Water, and Wood. The show's inspiration is either ancient Greek (Earth, Air, Fire, Water, and Aether) or Japanese (Earth, Air, Fire, Water, and Void). And the Avatar is TOTALLY a messiah figure. A reincarnated super-powerful meta-spiritual being whose job is to maintain peace and balance? That's pretty much the definition. It's just that almost every culture on earth has messiah mythology, so it can't be said to be from anywhere.
      • *sigh* You Fail Religious Studies Forever. Firstly, no, every culture on Earth does not have a "messiah mythology". There are vaguely similar concepts in some other cultures, but the specific concept of the Messiah is unique to the Abrahamic religions. Secondly, no, Messiah does not refer to "a reincarnated super-powerful meta-spiritual being whose job is to maintain peace and balance". In fact, most of that definition is actually antithetical to the concept of the Abrahamic Messiah. While Judaism, Christianity, and Islam disagree on the specific details, all three consider the Messiah to be a person who will destroy all evil on Earth and will either bring about or preside over the End of Days. There is nothing in there about maintaining a "balance" between good and evil or between nations (in fact most believers think the Messiah will unite all nations under a single kingdom) and there is certainly nothing in there about "reincarnation", a distinctly east-Asian concept. Once again, just because other cultures have concepts vaguely similar to the Abrahamic Messiah does not mean they have a "messiah mythology".
      • The Avatar might not be a messiah figure, but Aang certainly is. He was gone for 100 years, making the Earth (or whatever planet the Avatar world is on) a living hell, suddenly appeared, was destined to save the world and as a result, was chased around all over that same world. Come on, what else do you need in a messiah? He just wasn't killed and instead succeeded.
      • Really? I found him (Aang) more of a 'Sun Wukong/Monkey King' figure. Travelling around the world with a bunch of other people who are awesomely cool at certain different techniques/styles seeking enlightenment righting wrongs and solving problems along the way of a larger journey. Being imprisoned for a long time, fun loving, KUNG FU,
      • Did we read the same 'Journey to the West'? Because the Sun Wukong I know is very little like Aang, spending the prologue drunkenly dicking around in Heaven until he finds a dude with a hand too big to jump out of and getting himself trapped under a huge palm-heel strike of pinnacles. Then the Buddha-wannabe Xuanzang comes along on a quest to retrieve Buddhist texts from India and bring them to China, and lets Sun Wukong out with the latter wearing a Tiara of Bodhisattva Chant Migraines so that Xuanzang could control the mischievous monkey nutcase. The rest is mostly the Buddha throwing demons at the group of monkey, pig, and 2x monk because they need 81 catastrophes for Xuanzang to attain enlightenment, mostly with the nigh powerless Xuanzang trusting every demon that comes along and wants to eat his flesh, and Sun Wukong seeing through everything but incapacitated by Bodhisattva Chant Migraines until Xuanzang is about to be a monk roast, after which he comes and saves the monk's pasty butt. I fail to see how the story of Aang is anything similar to any of this... The closest I get is Sokka as the mischievous, Cassandra Sun Wukong and Aang as the derpy but kindhearted Xuanzang (with Toph and Katara as Pig and Ogre-Monk Who Is Largely Uninteresting, I guess?). Either way, Aang is far more like Jesus, and IMO, the story is, at its core, a Western story, but I digress...
      • Re: the four elements are Greek only thing - This is a direct quote from Bryan in the art book:
      People often assume the "four-element theory" (comprised of air, water, earth, and fire) we brought to bending is exclusive to ancient Greece, and that in ancient China only a "five-element theory" was used (comprised of wood, fire, earth, metal, and water). Mike and I never claim to be experts in any of these subjects, but in our research we found the four-element theory was prevalent in ancient cultures all over the world, including ancient Buddhist teachings.
      • The fact remains that the specific four elements they chose were pretty much Grecian in nature, not Chinese. Note the lack of air and presence of wood and metal. That they acknowledge it simply means that its prevalent elsewhere, but this particular bit of culture is not from China; it would've helped their case more if they stated it was from Japan, since Japan does have five elements which would work with Avatar.
      • Isn't the Avatar based off of the Dalai Lama? They are both people who re-incarnate as another person. (Currently we are on our 14th Dalai Lama)
      • The term Avatar itself is an Eastern concept. The Dalai Lama is probably the most well known Avatar in the West, but is not the only one. The thing is like this, and keep in mind that Buddhism, Hinduism and Jainism differ on their definitions of Avatars.

        For Hinduism an Avatar is the physical manifestation of a god, particularly Vishnu, who has ten Avatars (in most versions) including the eighth; Krishna, the ninth Buddha and the tenth Kalki (that is still to come).

        For Buddhism an Avatar or more commonly call a Bodhisattva, is a enlighten being that, again, reincarnates or manifests as a physical being. Buddhists have no gods in the religious sense, so the closest they have to deities are the Bodhisattvas. Gautama Buddha, for example, is considered one of these in Mahayana and Vajrarayana Buddhism. The Dalai Lama is an Avatar or Bodhisattva or the Buddha Avalokitesvara, the Panchen Lama and other many high rank Buddhist masters are generally considered Bodhisattvas of some Buddhist deity. Tibetan Buddhism is probably the branch with the highest number of Bodhisattvas, but their existence is common in all branches.

        I’m not as familiar with Jainism but their concept of Avatars I think is similar to Buddhism with some differences.

        So, the idea behind the Avatar in the show is, as you can see, base mostly in Hindu-Buddhist lore.

     Kya's necklace 
  • In "The Southern Raiders," I noticed that Kya (Katara's mother) had on the necklace she supposedly passed down to Katara while being interrogated by Yon Rha. So...what, did they remove the necklace from the body after the fact, or...? Though I also doubt she died extremely violently, but eh. Doesn't make much sense to have it there; maybe it's just an accident.
    • This Troper always assumed that she was wearing the necklace Hakoda gave her, and he simply made it look a lot like the one that Kanna gave to her daughter in a way of showing that he loved Kya enough to try to emulate the stranger who had given Kanna a necklace that was so treasured by Kya.
    • When my dad died I inherited his Rose Bowl watch. I don't see why Katara shouldn't have inherited her late mother's necklace (assuming it is the same necklace).
    • *sigh*, the reason she couldn't have gotten it was because her mom was wearing it when she was (presumably) burnt to a crisp!
      • We don't know how much of Kya actually got torched.
    • Maybe Kya took the necklace off and set it aside before she was killed.

     Adrenaline Makeover 
  • Okay, look at the picture on the Adrenaline Makeover page. Now, ignoring the fact that Katara shouldn't even be that tan in the FIRST PLACE (being that she is basically an eskimo who has lived below the Antarctic circle her entire life up until Aang), how is it that she got PALER after spending a great deal of time in EQUITORIAL countries?!
    • A culture that eats a lot of fish is probably going to have medium/dark skin regardless of latitude. The reason pale skin exists is to let more sun in so your skin can use it to make a vitamin, and fish are naturally high in that vitamin.
    • Maybe it's just the sun making it look lighter? ..Oh wait, isn't it like that inside too?
    • Eskimos have naturally olive skin, and Katara's skin tone is actually within the normal range. (Also, getting tan is far from impossible in the polar regions. In fact, sunburn can be a health problem in polar regions; even though those areas are cold the snow reflects almost all of the UV light.) As for Katara getting pale, that could just be the lighting.
    • Each Book was animated by a different studio, which is also why there are slight differences in the appearance of the character's faces over the seasons (Aang's eyes sometimes look bigger or smaller, and it might just be me, but in the last season many characters, notably Aang and Katara, have shorter/ more "snub"-type noses).

     Sokka's wolftail 
  • How does Sokka have a "Warrior's Wolf Tail". A plain "wolf" seems very out of place in the Avatar world.
    • There are some normal animals in the Avatar world, like bears and cats. Maybe wolves exist there too.
      • Obviously Sokka is a wolf/human.
    • Maybe "Wolf" is just a general term for the species. We have poodles, golden retrievers, bloodhounds, huskies dachshunds, and the list goes on, but they're all classified as dogs. There could easily be a Bear-wolf, a Cat-Wolf, Eagle-Wolf, and Whatever-The-Hell-Else-Wolf, all classified generally as "wolves."
      • A normal, run-of-the-mill wolf is mentioned in Bato of the Water Tribe.
      • There was also that freaking huge spirit wolf.
      • And Bat-Wolves Wolf-Bats in the Secret Tunnel.

     Appa's carrying capacity 
  • A lot of people say that it makes no sense that Appa can carry about twelve adults in The Great Divide without a problem but he gets tired carry around seven kids in The Western Air temple, why does no one remember the two major differences between these circumstances?
    1. Appa wasn't wearing metal armor in The Great Divide, but he was during The Western Air Temple.
    2. The Great Divide is set during the winter, while The Western Air Temple is set during the summer. One tends to tire out faster when it's hot.
    • Also Appa could have stopped to rest a dozen times for all we know in the Great Divide. He was offscreen the entire time he was carrying those dozen people and it took everyone else 2 days to cross on foot. He had plenty of time to take breaks and still make it to the other side ahead of them.
    • Also also, Appa had just spent the whole day flying around during battle and fighting in that full plate armor that couldn't have been terribly light. He was probably pretty damn tired to begin with when they left the Fire Nation capital.

     Roku's headpiece 
  • When the volcano starts erupting, and Roku and Ta Min run out of their house, we can see him take the headpiece off and leave it on the floor. At the "current" time, the island is deserted and seemingly featureless; everything has been "completely covered in ash", according to Toph, which would verify that it was the eruption that did it. How, then, did Iroh come to possess the item in the first place (much less have the foresight to smuggle it into his cell, which would be a different question entirely)?
    • Iroh's just that badass.
    • Iroh never said that it was Roku's headpiece. A duplicate headpiece could have been created after Sozin gave his to Roku, then passed down from Sozin to Azulon to Iroh. Admittedly that wouldn't make a whole whack of sense in the context of the episode. Alternately, Sozin could have gone to Roku's house first, before going up the volcano, seen the headpiece on the floor, and taken it back. As for Iroh's smuggling foresight ... yeah, he's just that awesome.
      • Going to Roku's house first seems pretty reasonable. After all, if you're looking for someone, the first place you'd go is where they're most likely to be. Iroh's smuggling could either be a result of someone he trusted (probably from the White Lotus) sneaking it to him, or part of a plan he had already created.
    • Also, what was the point of having it at all? It makes no sense in context (both in terms of how he had it at all, and how he got it into the cell), and then it never shows up again. If it became a plot device with Zuko later, I understand why they would have it, but why break the Willing Suspensionof Disbelief like that and then never mention it again?
      • Possibly because the point of it was served in that single episode. It was the physical reminder of the bond which once existed between the Avatar and the Fire Lord, and once Zuko finally realised the true significance of that relationship in the present day, in him as a descendant of both, its job was done. To (badly) paraphrase what Zuko said in 'The Firebending Masters', it was a shadow of the past Zuko could learn from in the present, but once it was done he could move on from it. In that aforementioned episode, he understandably feels far more hesitant about explaining he's the crown prince, so perhaps he no longer wanted that association with the Royal Family until he could establish it on his own terms - as with his becoming Fire Lord. (Though admittedly if that were the answer and the writers hadn't simply ignored the headpiece, it would have been referred to.)
    • One of the comics actually reveals that the headpiece ended up in the possession of Roku's daughter (Ursa's mother), Rina, as she had it out in front of her when Azulon and Ozai came to propose to Ursa. Whether Azulon confiscated it as an heirloom of the royal family, and subsequently gave it to Iroh, or just had another one made isn't clear.

     Trusting generals 
  • In the season 2 finale, it is said by the earth king that the council of five are his most trusted generals. These are the same guys who either kept the war secret from him, never met the earth king or got appointed within the last day(in which case the first two still apply). None of that says anything good about their reliability.
    • Perhaps, the Dai Li were keeping the war a secret from them as well.
    • More likely, they were being manipulated by the Dai Li themselves. Long Feng probably had given them orders to keep the war a secret and to lead the Earth Kingdom's armies at his command rather than the Earth King's, or else.
    • Even more likely, the five generals only met and spoke with the Dai Li who acted as the Earth King's "official representative" to the council of generals. As far as they knew, the Dai Li always relayed their words to the Earth King after every meeting because that's what he told them. And as far as the Earth King knew, at every meeting the five generals just kept saying "everything's cool, no signs of war" because that's what the Dai Li told him.
    • The king isn't exactly shown to be very sharp. Perhaps he does trust them, but he also trusted the Dai Li, but we see how that turned out. Maybe these generals saw that the king wasn't exactly a thinker and didn't want him messing with their war plans, so they went along with the deception.
      • That doesn't sound likely. If the generals had known how loyal the Dai Li were to Long Feng, they probably would've warned the Earth King about it once the conspiracy was exposed, which would've prevented Azula's coup from happening in the first place. It's more likely that they were as much in the dark as the king was with regard to how much he knew.

     Entering the Air Temple sanctuary 
  • How did the mechanist get into that room at the northern air temple? They said you can only get in there by air bending, so how did he get in? I didn't see any inventions there that could simulate airbending.
    • You're assuming that he came in through the door, and not by busting through a wall somehow.
      • Looking back at the inside of the room, there were no holes in the wall. But there was a skylight, so maybe that's the answer.
    • All it requires is pumping enough air at enough pressure to push open the three spinny locks. Building an air pump to open it would be simple enough.
      • That's parallel to Sokka's idea in the Fire temple. The explosives failed to simulate firebending though, so I think a simple air pump wouldn't work here either. I think the Mechanist got there from above or indeed through a wall.
      • The reason Sokka's idea didn't work is that the door in the fire temple apparently needed sustained fireblasts to open. He just set off a handful of explosions, which didn't cut it.

     Pointless trap 
  • So the chamber in "The Firebending Masters" is meant to make you go through the ancient firebending steps, in order to bring up the golden egg, and clearly the firebending steps are vital later on... so what's the point of the golden egg? To gluetrap the shmucks who pulled off the ancient firebending steps?
    • The golden egg is a treasured and probably religious relic. Obviously, whatever value it has to the Sun Warriors, it is supposed to stay put. The trap isn't to catch people who pulled off the firebending form, its to catch anyone stupid enough to try to take the egg itself.
      • Still doesn't explain why pulling off the firebending steps would bring up the trigger for a trap... unless it's somehow connected to them cheating the solstice timelock before that.
      • You're overthinking it. It's a quasi-religious icon that stays hidden except for the day of the solstice, where the Sun Warriors do the firebending form and then bow down to the sun stone or something.
      • Right. The trap is completely unconnected to the firebending dance. Its only there to catch someone who tries to steal the egg in the first place, and figures out how to actually raise the egg.
    • Yes. This troper rather thought that was obvious. The room is a Secret Test of Character and the golden egg is Schmuck Bait. If the visitors are thieves they'll take the egg and get caught by the trap. If they're there to learn True Firebending they'll leave the egg alone. The egg itself probably has no significance whatsoever beyond being pretty and glittery. It would've worked great if Zuko had listened to Aang's warning not to touch the egg, but no one ever accused Zuko of being the brightest crayon in the box...
      • Except that Zuko says it feels "alive". I just figured that the egg was literally a dragon egg. One of the two masters could be female and laid an egg that the Sun Warriors protect (hence the trap). After all, rebirth is an incredibly common theme in Avatar.
      • Could be. In the sequel series, Zuko has actually taken to riding a dragon descended from Ran and Shaw.

     Zuko Alone 
  • Is no one gonna talk about Zuko Alone? I mean Zuko rides into town and makes friends with a local boy and his mom. But when he's forced to reveal he's a firebender to stop a bully who's using the war as an excuse for his actions, even they turn on him despite the fact he's been banished. I mean, come on!
    • And? Zuko's a firebender; the people in the village have been at war with firebenders for a century, and he's the declared son of who they perceive to be the root of all the misery in their lives. Their response is exactly what you'd expect from people who've spent generations suffering due to the Fire Nation.
    • The village yes, I can see that. It's the boy and his mother who bug me. They met him, got to know him, they should have at least realize that not all firebenders are evil especially the one who saves your life!
      • That's the point. Hatred and enmity for the Fire Nation is so deeply ingrained in these people that merely being a firebender is enough to be result in being hated. The fact that Zuko saved the boy was irrelevant; he's a firebender. You're acting like hate, racism, long-term warfare, and generational ethnic conflict can be undone by one good act. Its not that easy. The entire point behind that scene was to reinforce just how horribly the war the Fire Nation began is affecting people.
      • Right. It's just like in the episode The Painted Lady. After it's revealed that it was Katara all along that was helping the village, the villagers are angry and start ganging up on her because she's a water bender and she tricked them by dressing as a character from their legends. It isn't until Sokka gives his speech that they realize that no matter who she is, she did save them on multiple occasions, and only then do they come to their senses and thank her. Because of the war, hatred between the different nations are running high and cloud judgement.
    • I can't help but think that things would've gone better if he didn't give a speech about how he's the son of the firelord
    • True, also while the bullies may had been well bullies, they were still Earth kingdom citizens. While the villagers may had been cheering for Zuko when they thought he was Earth Kingdom citizen too, his reveal of being Fire Nation, changed their view of him as the underdog fighting against a group of oppressors to a fire bender beating down on Earth Kingdom citizens, basically the same thing they'd been hearing about over and over again. Now, if the bullies had been changed to Fire Nation troops, the villagers' opinion of Zuko might have been different.
      • I think the real question is Why didn't Zuko call the villagers out on their instant prejudice?
      • Same reason you don't waste time arguing with someone in bad faith. All you're going to get is ignorance and your words rejected. Why bother?
      • Zuko is the crown prince of the nation that is actively trying to conquer them. Their "instant prejudice" is pretty well justified.
      • And remember, at this point, Zuko's still stuck trying to decide whose side he's on. While he was exiled from the Fire Nation, he couldn't honestly say that he'd forsaken their conquering ways just yet. Especially when his identity was revealed to them by him proudly announcing himself as the crown prince moments before.

     Jet's death 
  • Alright, so in Lake Laogai, Jet is killed by a nasty blow to the chest by Long Feng. Fast forward to season 3, and Zuko recieves an identical blow from Toph (in the first episode after the Day of Black Sun). He clutches his side for a second, but is otherwise ok and never displays that injury again. What gives?
    • Long Feng was shooting to kill. Toph was not. At most, it was a "get away from me" reflex. Besides that, consider the amount of damage Zuko's taken in the three seasons. Besides that, Zuko's been slammed into countless things by this point. He just has a ton of Hit Points.
      • Good point on that last part. Something bothers me about the first, though; she may not have been attacking with killing in mind, but she was clearly desperate and hysterical (as she had a right to be, she was effectively blinded as well as slowed greatly, after all). It's not unreasonable to expect that she may have put a teensy bit more force behind the blow than is strictly necessary to get Zuko away, she is not in her normal state of mind. As well, given that she's almost certainly a stronger bender than Long Feng (treated that way, at any rate. Though given how much power the Dai Li are shown to have, this may not be exactly true), it may be that, although she put out less in terms of effort, she still put out more in terms of absolute power.
    • According to the commentary for that episode, in martial arts, the intent of a strike matters. Long Feng intended to kill, Toph didn't.

     Sokka's club 
  • When the Sandbenders steal Appa, we see in "Appa's Lost Days" that Sokka's club is among the items dumped on the ground in the middle of the desert. Sokka is seen using it, though, in later episodes, so when did he get it back?
    • Three explanations I can think of off the top of my head. First, the sandbenders kept everything they found, and had it with them when they found the Gaang at the vulture-hornet hive. Second, Sokka made a new one. Third, Sokka is Crazy-Prepared and brought two.
    • Or he got a new one when he met up with his dad and the other men at Chameleon Bay.

     The Water Tribe's brilliant strategy! 
  • What is wrong with the Northern Water Tribe in The Siege of the North? For the entire first night of the fighting they do literally nothing. They are explicitly stated to have increased power because of the moon, they clearly have the power to freeze up Fire Nation ships during the day, they only have this power boost for a limited amount of time and they don't think to take advantage of it? If you look closely at the start of the second day you can see that the water benders didn't even bother to repair the damaged walls from the previous days bombardment.
    • Attacking the Fire Nation ships would be suicide. They're close together with overlapping arcs of fire and loaded with large numbers of troops. The waterbenders have to get close to attack the FN ships as shown when they attack one of said ships, and it takes a significant number of benders to do so to a single vessel. The Fire Nation fleet consists of hundreds such ships; they outnumber the Northern Tribe by a significant amount with a mere expeditionary force. After all, the Fire Nation army was able to overwhelm the Northern Tribe in a single day while assaulting heavily-defended enemy fortifications on top of their own element. If the Northern Water Tribe actually did something as stupid as emerge from their fortifications to sortie against the Fire Nation ships, they would be slaughtered, moon or no moon.
      • Except that the Northern Water Tribe did just that during the day of the first battle, going out in small boats to freeze up the ships. We have no reason to think that they can't do more from the safety of their walls under the full moon and even if they couldn't that still doesn't explain why they don't launch attacks during the night when the Fire Nation would have a hard time just trying to see them. Heck, the strike team sent out on the second day showed no problem locating and attacking Zhao even though they clearly didn't know the first thing about Fire Nation soldiers. But even if we assume that for some reason they can't do that it still doesn't answer why they didn't repair the walls.
      • Yes, they went out in small boats against one individual ship, which was being attacked by the Avatar at the time, and it took dozens of waterbenders to neutralize the ship. Not the entire Fire Nation navy, assembled in one solid formation and ready to return fire with artillery, firebenders, and other weaponry. There is absolutely no evidence that the Northern Tribe could strike at the Fire Nation navy from behind the walls, especially considering they have to be up close to even attack the Fire Nation vessels in their boats. The moonlight provides plenty of light to see by, and you can bet the Fire Nation will have plenty of sentries on watch to make sure the Northern Tribe doesn't get close. The strike team was able to infiltrate the Fire Nation fleet because it was a very small force operating in the middle of the main assault when things were confused and they could slip in among the confusion.
      • We've seen waterbenders surf around on water using nothing but their powers, and fairly quickly. There's no real reason the fire nation should ever win a sea battle against an army of waterbenders without them specifically using some sort of technology that gets around the fact that they're, you know, sailing on their enemies' weapon. Zhao's plan made sense on paper, but the fact that it required him to fight to the back of the city to take away their power sort of defeated the purpose. The waterbenders should have had no trouble replacing the walls on the fly, like we saw them do to create an entrance for Aang and his friends. Not to mention, boats are pretty dependent on water. The waterbenders should never even had to get close to the ships. All they should have had to do is line up on the walls and create a massive tidal wave to knock all of the ships over (or worse).
      • We've seen a very, very small number of waterbenders surf around on water without boats, and those are masters. The vast majority of waterbenders in the series use boats exclusively. There is plenty of reason why the Fire Nation can win against waterbenders on water: they have greater numbers and more firepower, and waterbenders need to devote dozens of benders to disable a single Fire Nation ship. The FN navy has hundreds of ships and thousands of sailors, not counting marine infantry, that can strike at far greater ranges than the waterbenders are capable of striking, as evidenced by the fact that they had to be within fifty meters to assault the individual Fire Nation ship that Aang was attacking, and the FN navy is in a tight formation with interlocking fields of fire. If they can put out more fire (literally and figuratively) than the waterbenders can match, at greater range than they are capable of, they have fire superiority. Demonstrated capabilities of the Northern Water Tribe show that the Fire Nation can indeed do this; the Fire Nation simply has that much more weaponry to bring to bear. In naval terms, they're able to achieve a greater concentration of force than the waterbenders can manage. Replacing the walls appears to require group effort and precise motions, which will be difficult when you're being constantly bombarded by hundreds of flaming catapault shots; battle damage inflicted on the city on the second day of the siege came from the bombardment on that day, and there are signs of repairs (while Zuko is infiltrating the city, you can see sections of the walls that had taken hits the previous day - they have been repaired) The waterbenders do have to get close to the ships, as demonstrated by the fact that the only time they attacked a Fire Nation ship they had to get right on top of it. They couldn't line the walls because of artillery bombardment that was suppressing them and pushing them backward; this was a common tactic in warfare all the way back to the Romans to clear archers off walls and it appears to have worked here as well.
        In conclusion, the Northern Water Tribe was outnumbered, and overpowered by superior FN technology, which had superior range and ability to inflict damage. Demonstrated Water Tribe capabilities, coupled with what we see of other waterbenders elsewhere in the series, indicates that they simply don't have the range to match the FN navy, or the numbers to do any serious damage to their ships once the main fleet arrives with concentrated force. There's nothing wrong with this; the benders are very powerful on water, but the FN simply has a greater industrial base and technology, allowing them to achieve greater concentration of force.
        If the invasion force was a single flotilla, maybe consisting of a dozen or so ships, I would agree with you. The waterbenders should be able to take such a force. The fact is, though, that the Fire Nation force sent against the Northern Water Tribe consisted of hundreds of ships. That's simply too much firepower, even for a tribe of waterbenders atop their own element, to match.
      • Keep in mind also that is is actually completely consistent with what we've seen elsewhere in the series, with the Fire Nation fighting the Earth Kingdom. If anything, the Fire Nation should be in an even worse position fighting the Earth Kingdom, as they're constantly fighting on terrain that, quite literally, favors the Earth Kingdom - and they've been continuously winning over a century of constant warfare, to the point that they've got the EK armies besieged in their own home cities. Just like with the Water Tribes, the Fire Nation's armies/navies are just that much more powerful and capable due to the immense technological and engineering advantage they have.
    • Also remember how few people they have in comparison. If the waterbenders couldn't defeat the WHOLE armada that night, then they'd be exhausted the next day when the fighting resumed. Not attacking was a defensive move.

     The Chase ending 
  • I wasn't quite sure where to put this because it bugs me on so many levels, so here goes: what the hell was going on at the end of "The Chase"? So Azula "surrenders" (and no one sees through it), then she hits Iroh with lightning, who so far was the only person in the series to stand up to her and redirect her lightning, a technique only he knew. When he falls, Aang, Zuko Katara and Toph bend their elements at her(which for Toph really doesn't make much sense). So Azula shields herself with... fire? How does that work? Then the whole Captain Planet nightmare explodes(?!?), Azula disappears, and the whole town is on fire. So, uh, what part of this makes sense?
    • I'm pretty sure Azula shot Iroh with her regular (blue) fire, not lightning, so he couldn't have redirected it. And my impression was that she created the explosion as cover to duck away under- Jeong Jeong does something similar in "The Deserter".
    • Azula shot Iroh when he glanced aside at Toph. He was distracted for an instant, but Azula is so damned good at exploiting weaknesses that she seized the fraction of a moment she got to hit him. That distracted the rest of the group for the instant she needed to whip up a shield of fire. Firebenders' flames have consistently been shown to have concussive force to them, demonstrated multiple times throughout the series. This is most notably in Jeong-Jeong's case, but there have been other instances where fire being created by a firebender can smash rocks, divert water, and disrupt air or other flames, so there's no reason why Azula can't whip up a shield with bent fire. In Toph's case, she was sending a shockwave of rock at Azula, which is also demonstrated elsewhere in the series, most notably when Long Feng does a similar move against Jet that hits him with enough force to kill him, so what Toph was doing actually makes perfect sense. Azula appear to create the explosion with her shield to cover her escape. The town was already on fire before they attacked her, due to all the fire Zuko and Azula had been slinging, and the flames that were generated and cast about by the explosion after the combined attack on her.
      • But where did she go? She was cornered, and clearly didn't jet-pack away or anything. I think they realized some of the problems with this when they made fun of it during the play.
      • She moved at the speed of plot.
      • Avatar is wuxia. Azula could easily have simply jumped over the wall; she's demonstrated similar jumping feats before. E.g. the intro to "The Southern Raiders," for example, has both Zuko and Azula making leaps that are pretty much impossible in real life.
      • Lets not forget that Azula can fly, not very well, but she can rocket herself forward with her flames. That should have given her plenty of distance in short time.

     Why go with the blind girl? 
  • Why does the Shell Game Master pick Toph to play? Since he's running a con (and he is running a con, or he wouldn't switch the rock halfway through), he would want to fix the odds so that the player has a 0% chance of guessing correctly. But a blind person would automatically have a 33% chance of guessing correctly, regardless of other circumstances. (Relatedly, why did he bother swapping the rock the first time she was playing? Or did he expect her companions to help her?)
    • It wouldn't matter if she was blind or not, because he didn't plan on her having any chance to win. He wasn't swapping the rocks. The first game, he loaded all of the shells with rocks so she would win, and then the second, he was in the process of putting all of the rocks in his sleeve so she would lose. Toph just tricked him because she's an earthbender.
    • I once took a class on magic/sleight-of-hand tricks, and one of the things the instructor taught us was the three-card-monte scam. It turns out that when confronted with a completely random choice, people will pick the middle shell/card more than 50% of the time, so even an honest 3-card-monte game would give the scammer 2:1 odds in their favor (assuming their target isn't in on the trick). But of course, no one ever actually runs these things honestly; after teaching us the trick to it, our teacher then spent the next 20 minutes showing us how to palm cards. In the context of the show, a child probably just looked like an easy target to take advantage of.
    • Why did he pick her? She had money. The con artist doesn't care if she was blind or not. She was a kid with cash which meant she was a target for his scam.
    • Another question about that episode is why they put Toph in a wooden cell. Judging by her tone of voice, the guard seemed to be well aware that Toph could bend metal. How? Even assuming they knew who she was (Combustion Man did talk to them beforehand), there can't be many people who know about the metalbending. It's highly unlikely they just guessed, since it's widely believed to be impossible. Toph hasn't done it in front of Combustion Man, and if she used it in a scam, it would have been too subtle for anyone to catch on (nobody ever seemed to realize she was Earthbending, after all).
      • Earthbenders can't bend wood. It's the same reason why they kept Ghazan in a wooden prison in Korra's time. They weren't worried or knew about her metal bending, they were worried about the earth bending.

     Just meditate! 
  • Nightmares and Daydreams. So Aang is stressed out. Why. Doesn't. He. Meditate. In a world of eastern philosophy, this seems like a gigantic plothole! No one even mentions it! It, well... it Just Bugs Me.
    • Meditation is two steps away from being asleep anyway. If he tried it, he might really fall asleep and have more nightmares, which he doesn't want. Besides, "I'm not going to sleep for two days straight and before I walk into the most important battle of my life" is not on very high on the list of informed decisions.
    • He's so stressed out he probably can't meditate anyway.
    • He does try yoga. It doesn't work well for him.

     Hama's prison 
  • In "The Puppetmaster", how did Hama build a prison cell, complete with a metal door and chains, in a cave under a mountain?
    • With a hammer, nails, wrench, possibly a screwdriver... Look, if they have refrigerators (used for torture) and steam-powered jet-skis on this show, One lady can put a door on a cave and build a few cages. She had a lot of time. She was 30 tops, when she escaped, and had to have been there for some thirty years.
    • I assumed that she found this old, abandoned prison and decided to use it for her own purposes.
    • She may as well have scared some of her prisoners so badly that they are willing to do slave labour for her to avoid her wrath. They think that she is a witch who can make them cut their own throats at any time, after all.

     Row, row, row your boat 
  • Season 1, Episode 9 - "The Water Bending Scroll", How in the world did they get those boats UP THAT WATERFALL in the first place? There is simply no way they had the manpower and time to haul a steel boat and a massive Junk up a waterfall of that size.
    • They came from the other direction.
      • No they didn't. They came from an ocean port.
      • Maybe they came up another channel/distributary?

     No harsh words for Azula? 
  • No doubt about it, Zuko slamming Ozai was one of the best moments of the entire series, but am I the only one who was disappointed that Zuko didn't also call out Azula for being such a manipulative bitch and horrible sister? As awesome as their Agni Kai was, it would have been SO much more awesome if Zuko had at least somewhat slammed Azula verbally either before or during the fight...
    • Because Zuko's wise enough to know that Azula is just as much a victim as he is. It wasn't obvious to him before; but when he realized how wrong Ozai was, and his philosophies and ideas were just mean spirited horseshit, he probably knew that Azula was stuck under his thumb (and given how the comics reinforce how little he thought of killing Zuko, he wouldn't have thought twice to kill Azula) and got warped under Ozai's "parenting". Azula in that battle was in a way, a dirty reminder of what he could have been had he never been banished from the kingdom.
    • If anything he regretted what he thought he had to do—remember, he was prepared to kill his little sister if the fight called for it. That's not a mindset where he's ready to call her out, it's a mindset where he has to keep his emotions in check.

      Also, Azula was too far gone for it to make a difference. You don't stop to tell a rabid mutt "Bad dog!" because it won't register. All Zuko felt he could do at that point was put her down.
      • Plus, YMMV, but Azula and Zuko DO seem to care for each other. Some people interpret her treatment of him in the beginning of Season 3 as rather decent (aside from the whole "Avatar still alive" thing)...
      • Definitely. Even if Zuko was determined to defeat Azula when he challenged her to the Agni Kai, she's such a pathetic, completely broken mess at the end of the fight that punishing her wouldn't have any meaning. Given that Zuko let his father off with imprisonment instead of execution, it's likely that he sent Azula to an asylum or some-such.
      • 1. He did send her to an asylum, the Avatar site confirmed it. 2. Zuko definately cares about Azula. He was prepared for the possibility of him having to kill her, sure, but Bryke outright say in the finale DVD commentary that "he didn't want to kill her" and is "not happy" about having to even fight her like this at all.
      • Also, 3. Azula challenged Zuko to the Agni Kai, not the other way around.
    • Zuko doesn't need to tell Azula that she is messed up. She already knows she's messed up and says as much to Zuko during "The Beach." Telling her she's nuts would be redundant and likely only get a "Well, yeah." response from her.

     Azulon's order 
  • You know the whole Azulon ordering Zuko dead thing? Let's assume, for simplicity's sake, that both Azula and Ozai were telling the truth (hard to believe, I know). How the heck would that version even have worked? How would Ozai have killed Zuko and gotten away with it? How the hell could Ursa kill Azulon? Why did nobody get suspicious of Ozai? And if Ozai hated Zuko so much, why didn't he just kill Zuko during the Agni Kai that he challenged him to?
    • Ozai would have killed Zuko by order of the Fire Lord. Can't argue with that. Ursa gets Azulon to sign a document declaring Ozai heir to the throne, then shoves a knife in his back. Nobody asks questions because there's a document with the Fire Lord's signature on it. And if you are suspicious, Ozai immolates you and your entire family as an example to anyone else who wants to get suspicious.
    • How would Ozai have killed Zuko and gotten away with it? Doing so under the orders of the Fire Lord. Besides, it's not like it would be hard for the son of the Fire Lord to disappear a child.
    • How the hell could Ursa kill Azulon? He's old, and he has to sleep at some point. She has access to the palace and Ozai's backing and support. Do the math. Hell, she could have just smothered him with a pillow, or dropped some poison into his food.
    • Why did nobody get suspicious of Ozai? Azulon was old. Death at old age happens.
    • And if Ozai hated Zuko so much, why didn't he just kill Zuko during the Agni Kai that he challenged him to? There's no indication that Ozai hated Zuko that much. Killing Zuko on Azulon's orders was just business.
      • Besides, it wouldn't look very good for someone to kill their own son. Banishment is far more palatable to the masses than murder. Also, it seems that Agni Kais don't usually end in death, but the burning of the eye. Ozai couldn't "accidentally" kill Zuko since Zuko didn't even fight.
      • You're forgetting the most important thing, Ozai was [already] Fire Lord when he challenged Zuko to the Agni Kai. In fact it was the fact that Zuko disrespected the Fire Lord that the Agni Kai was needed.
    • The question of how Ursa did it is answered in The Search: she provided Ozai with a vial of poison, and he did the dirty work. As for Ozai not killing Zuko during the Agni Kai, keeping the children alive was part of his deal with Ursa for the throne: he seemed to have a genuine fear of Ursa using the same poison on him that she'd provided to take care of Azulon, and Zuko was his "collateral." Killing him would have been counterproductive. Not to mention that making Zuko suffer was very likely an end in and of itself, solely for the purpose of spiting his mother. "How would Ozai have gotten away with it?" Simple. The Fire Lord's word is law. Royalty IRL have certainly done worse and gotten away with it.

     War's duration 
  • How exactly has this war gone on for 100 years? The Fire Nation hasn't seemed to do anything significant between the genocide of the Air Nomads and the beginning of the series? What exactly has been happening that whole time?
    • You mean besides raiding the Southern Water Tribe to capture waterbenders, repeated unsuccessful attacks on the Northern Water Tribe, building colonies all over the Earth Kingdom, conquering land, building up their warfighting ability, technology, and infrastructure, and laying seige to Ba Sing Se? You know, all the stuff they told us was happening right there on screen?
    • Yeah, I assumed that the war was a lot like the real life Hundred Years War which actually spanned over 100 years (116 actually) but had intermittent peaceful or relatively peaceful periods. I would expect the one in A:TLA never had true peaceful periods but might have had long-ish periods of inactivity from the Fire Nation whilst they planned.

     Patriotic prisoners 
  • In "The Boiling Rock part 1" the warden threatens Zuko with revealing his identity to the other prisoners, reasoning that since he "let the Fire Nation down" he would be targeted and attacked. Between the war prisoners and ordinary criminals, who in the entire inmate body would give a rat-somethings ass about Fire Nations politics? If anything, it would garner some respect for making problems for the authority.
    • Zuko was (once) prince of the Fire Nation; he represents the government. You know who's responsible for putting people in jail? The government. You know what would happen if a bunch of big, sweaty male prisoners knew that a little, scrawny, son of a government official was in jail with them? This if Zuko's lucky. And if he isn't...
    • Just because someone's a criminal doesn't mean they aren't still loyal to their country. The country is not necessarily the same as the government. Remember, the warden calls Zuko "the traitor prince" (emphasis mine). The ordinary criminals might well hate him for being a traitor, even if the war prisoners would respect him for it.
    • Alternatively, it could've been an empty threat, that he'd been using to try and scare Zuko. He lets him right into the fray with a bunch of other prisoners later in the episode, and none of them ever seem to make a big deal over him being there. The bigger threat was that the warden was going to turn him into the Fire Lord sooner or later.

     No questions? 
  • On a similar line, the Warden shows zero curiosity about Zuko's appearance on the Boiling Rock. Ex- Crown Prince sneaks into your high-security prison, wouldn't you at least ask why he's there? But the Warden just informs high command and adds him to the prisoners. He doesn't even connect two extremely rare events, Prince Apparition and Near-Escape.
    • Because he doesn't give a shit why he's there? It's not important to the Warden to question his inmates why they're there; just that they are there. Besides, it's the same Warden who is the uncle of the niece he just dumped. That'd be a petty ass reason, but if their relationship is good; that's good enough for him.

     Too soon? 
  • In The ember Island Players, one scene makes fun of the Fire Nation defeat at the North Pole. Now, we know that a lot of Fire Nation soldiers must have died offscreen (if they weren't killed by the Water Tribe warriors, then they were killed by Koizilla.) and the seige as a whole was a pretty huge defeat for the Fire Nation. The Seige of the North only happened a few months prior to the play's performance. Wouldn't this have fallen under Too Soon and a lot of people complained to the theater company? (While the Fire Nation would have believed they had pretty much won by that point, surely at least one of the families who lost a son or daughter would have been upset.)
    • 1.) Roku said that Sozin's Comet would arrive at summer's end, and by the time of the play, it's only a week or two away. The Siege of the North happened soon after the winter solstice - meaning the play is about half a year later, not "a few months." 2.) The failure of the siege was officially blamed on Iroh, who the play establishes as a traiterous, bumbling oaf the audience is supposed to be rooting against. 3.) One or two families being upset over one brief part of the play isn't going to have any effect on its reception anyway. If they're too upset to sit through it, they don't have to watch it.

     Unlocking the Avatar State 
  • So I can buy the energybending thing, it was cool. What bugged me was the whole nebulousness of the Avatar State. So Aang is learning to control it. He's told that if he leaves now, it'll be blocked forever. He naturally ignores this advice and the avatar state is presumably blocked. Things in the ensuing fight go south. He decides that it's actually not really blocked, and does the whole chi thingy to unlock it. It gets worse. He then explicitly states that the avatar state was blocked forever(again) by Azula murdering him. Okay, cool. Then in the fight with Ozai, he gets poked in his scar and that suddenly unlocks the avatar state again? Wat. Yes, pressure points and chi and all that, but it still seemed like either that makes no goddamned sense or somebody should have thought of that WAY sooner.
    • For the season 2 Finale, you're grossly overthinking it. He lost access to the Avatar State because he stopped trying to unlock his chakras, so to gain access to it, he obviously needed to continue on the path. As for the Finale: That was actually adequately explained by the Previously On segment. The Avatar State glows because all of his past lives are sending their energy through him. Katara noted that there was a ton of twisted energy around Aang's scar, and when she tried to untangle it, Aang received some of his memory of the fight. The problem was that she didn't untangle it enough. Simply reopening the scar let the energy flow properly again.

     Show some proof! 
  • In "The Serpent's Pass", Aang fails to convince the ticket lady that he's the Avatar because people regularly come up to her in Aang costumes and request free passage. Why doesn't he prove his identity by showing her some airbending?
    • Other than the fact that otherwise we wouldn't have an episode, there really is none.
    • It's possible that everyone else in the room would've crowded around the Gaang in admiration or whatnot and made it even tougher for them to get through without getting pushy. Beifong ID was simply the safer complication-free solution.
    • She's an Obstructive Bureaucrat. If Aang proved his identity, she'd just find some other pretext not to let him through, because it's not in the book. And there's no guarantee she would also give tickets to Aang's companions; she only let Toph take three extra tickets because she was particularly impressed with the paperwork.
      • Or rather, she was impressed by Toph's parents' money.

     Aang's eyes 
  • All right, I know that Aang technically has gray eyes. But there are just as many shots of him with gray eyes as there are of him with brown, or green, or even blue eyes. What's up with that? Is that what gray eyes look like in Real Life, or does Aang have Kaleidoscope Eyes?
    • Sometimes in Real Life eyes can look different hues, depending on the light. It seems to be the case in the show itself - like when it's sunset, everyone is colored warmer.
    • And some partial heterochromatic might also count - grey-blue eyes with light ochre dab around the pupil might look either grey, or bluish or green.
      • My eyes are like that and I've had people call them anything from grey to green and even yellow!

     Significance of "The Southern Raiders" 
  • Sooo...The Southern Raiders. Seems like an entire episode doesn't really fit in with either the series or Katara's character. Setting aside from the comparatively minor (in the episode not the series) matter of Katara's trust for Zuko, which really could have been better handled in general, what did it really accomplish? Katara goes superbitch mode towards Sokka for not supporting her bid to go after Yon Ra(h?). True, she does have her moments, but she's never that bad. And they turn her into a liar by having her use bloodbending, which she said she wouldn't use again. Sort of a Big Lipped Alligator Episode.
    • Katara had grown up thinking of the fire nation as these terrible, evil, and scary people- especially after one of them killed her mother. She pictured this man as a frightening monster, the ultimate evil, and yet when she finally confronts him she realizes that she had been wrong. Yon Rah isn't a monster- he is, in her words, merely pathetic, and actually not scary at all. In this moment, Katara realizes that the picture of the fire nation that she had grown up with isn't entirely true. This realization began with "The Headband" (seeing how the people of the fire nation are just that- people) and completes itself with this episode. The man who killed her mother, the ultimate evil in her eyes, is just a pathetic old man. And it's this final realization that allows her to forgive Zuko and accept him as a friend.
      • Yeah...that really doesn't address the entry in any way.
      • Sure it does. You said it doesn't fit with her character. They explained why it did. A kind person can easily hold deep feelings of anger towards someone, especially if that person killed their mother. It's an event that has defined her personality. It fits with the show because they haven't been scared to show a character do questionable things if it was necessary for their development (in this case, her forgiving Zuko). And she didn't lie about never using bloodbending. It's possible she was honest when she said that and in a moment of weakness and anger went back on that statement. For her to have lied, that would be that when she first claimed she wouldn't use bloodbending, she knew it wasn't true. The whole thing fits in with her character because family is important to her and she's kind of emotional.
      • Setting aside from the comparatively minor (in the episode not the series) matter of Katara's trust for Zuko, which really could have been better handled in general, what did it really accomplish?
      • How is Katara's trust for Zuko minor? Remember, at this point she was betrayed by him and is naturally suspicious. Her accepting him as a friend and ally is a huge step, and ties in well with the series' focus on forgiveness. In addition, she has dealt with the emotional baggage caused by her mother's death, which is a huge step in character development.
      • Plus, it shows how far they've come. Because Katara now trusts and cares for him, she sheds tears for him when he is severely wounded by Azula. If not for "The Southern Raiders" Katara would not have even agreed to come with Zuko to face off Azula. Then again, if Katara hadn't come, Zuko wouldn't have thrown himself in front of Katara, but I'm going to choose to ignore that fact.
    • Remember how the episode ended? Aang says that violence is never the answer, and Zuko asks what he's going to do about the Fire Lord? Remember how the series ended? Aang is conflicted about whether or not to kill the Fire Lord? If this episode had not occurred, Aang would probably never have gone on his entire spiritual journey in the finale and discovered energybending. After all, in Nightmares and Daydreams, he was basically freaking out because he thought Ozai might kill HIM. Thanks to Zuko's question in this episode, that is completely reversed by the finale.
    • It also wasn't just Katara's trust in Zuko that was cemented in the episode. It was her learning not to demonize the entire Fire Nation (something she's done throughout the entire series, if you haven't noticed; she brings it up all the time) due to the actions of one man. Hunting down her mother's killer ultimately made her recognize him for what he really was - a weak, feeble, pathetic old man - and that she shouldn't hold his actions against anyone else who just happens to be from the same nation.

     Imprisoning waterbenders 
  • The episode "The Puppetmaster" shows us that the Fire Nation kept water-benders in prison — for decades, according to the blood-bender. Why would the Fire Nation waste the resources to keep their enemies in prison for that long? Manpower, food, water, facilities — that seems like a lot of work. Wouldn't it be easier to just kill them outright?
    • Although this was never explicitly explained in the series, it can be inferred that a major reason why the fire nation was capturing water benders was to find the avatar. The fire lord must have figured that the airbending avatar (Aang) had already died in the fire raids on the air temples; therefore, the next avatar would have been born into the water tribes (perhaps they even knew the next avatar would be born into the southern water tribe as that's where Korra was born). So they rounded up all the waterbenders not only to weaken their forces, but in the hopes that one of them was the avatar. This would explain why they didn't kill any of the water benders; if they accidentally killed the avatar, he/she would just be reborn somewhere in the Earth Kingdom and, well, that would be quite a dilemma.
      • The problem here is we're never given the impression that the Fire Nation has even considered the idea that they managed to kill the Avatar during their raids on the Air Nomads. In fact Zuko and Uncle Iroh seem to be genuinely searching though it's possible that Iroh was simply enjoying some time with his nephew and Zuko was a stupid kid. This problem however is EXACTLY why wiping out the Air Nomads was a poor move, you would have been much better off capturing an Avatar and keeping him locked up someplace. Granted if he can get into the Avatar State he'll stay locked up for however long he feels like it and then he'll simply walk right out but it's better than risking him being born into the Earth Kingdom.
      • That's exactly it: they don't know. Nobody has any idea where the Avatar is. Zuko and Iroh were sent on a blatant Snipe Hunt; they were never expected to find the Avatar. Giving them this mission to reclaim Zuko's honor was Firelord Ozai's way of subtly telling Zuko to go off and die somewhere because he's no longer welcome in the Fire Nation. It's possible that the Avatar could be an Airbender who survived. It's also possible that he could be a Waterbender, and there's also the possibility that a Waterbender Avatar died at some point, and now he's an Earthbender. Nobody knows who or where the Avatar is at this point, and they don't want to take the chance of finding him only to lose him to the reincarnation cycle again because of some trigger-happy Firebender - which, incidentally, is probably why Yon Rah is a miserable, disgraced old wretch instead of a retired war hero living in the lap of luxury.
      • In addition to the possibility that the airbender Avatar was killed in the purge of the Air Nomads, the Fire Nation could also consider it possible that he laid low and died of old age in the interim. Zuko expected the Avatar to be an old master because he had no idea Aang was frozen in ice without biologically aging all this time. For all they knew, he could be dead by now.
    • But going back to the original question: maybe is a case of unreliable narrator, for anyone in that situation months of captivity or even a few years can feel like decades, also Hama could just making the Fire Nation even worst. It is unlikely that they really kept the prisoners that long.
    • You...are aware that people die in prison right?
    • Why she doesn't kill them out right is pretty much violating Pay Evil unto Evil. She wants them to suffer just as she did. It's not unheard of to adopt similar MO.

     How are they managing a war with the Earth Kingdom? 
  • I know we covered the north pole not massacring the fire nation boats at night, but what really got me is that running a war against the Earth Kingdom would be a logistical nightmare. They can control earth! we actually see them derail trains and carts and stuff. A small strike team could easily sneak in a ruin food/weapon shipments for an entire army. Napoleon said that armies fight on their stomach, and Patton said that the most important vehicles in war are the jeep, plow, and cargo plane. No way should the Fire Nation have been able to wage a successful war.
    • Sheer militaristic determination. The Firebenders were born and bred for war and kept at it, whereas there are probably less Earth Kingdom natives who are soldiers, much less Earthbenders.
    • That and the Fire Nation has an advantage of being united under one leader while the Earth Kingdom appears to be a loose confederation of states. While the Earth Kingdom's large size makes it much harder to conquer owing to the Fire Nation having to traverse more land, it also makes it harder for Earth armies from various states to pull together effectively to fend off the Fire Nation.
    • Lotta factors you're forgetting. For one, Long Feng was able to keep people content in a lie in Ba Sing Se, so there was no way the Earth King was to know what was going on until it was too late. Secondly, Azula proved you can knock down a city in 48 hours just by using your network. In addition, remember that the air nomads went extinct save for one and the earthbenders were not? The Fire Nation's massive plan for Sozin's Comet was Scorched Earth. The Fire Nation was going to commit a second genocide on a race of people and deal with the aftermath when they could. Plus, even if they didn't get all of the land before Sozin's Comet passed; that massive damage was going to be a huge set back to the food of the people and the morale would have plummeted. That massive amount of damage in such a short time is hard to rally a counter attack against (or even a meaningful one) and would've ended in the Earth Kingdom's submission. That, or they face extinction like the Air Nomads and the Fire Nation gets a ton of land and resources (well, after the land heals) and can figure out transportation at a later time.

     Masking your emotions 
  • More of a speculative question than a logistical one, but why hasn't anyone thought to wear a mask while confronting Koh? Yeah, he could rip it off, but if that were so why doesn't he just rip your face off? I feel like he has to follow rules...
    • He's a spirit. Why should a mask prevent him from taking someone's face if they change their expression?
      • Because in the episode Koh appears in, when Aang makes an expression while Koh isn't looking, his face doesn't get stolen. This implies that Koh has to see your face or expression to steal it. Therefore, covering up should prevent it.
      • When dealing with Koh, he has all the power. Nobody deals with Koh unless they need something from him. Koh wants your face, but doesn't need it. If you go to Koh wearing a mask for information, Koh is well within his abilities to tell you, "I am not speaking to you until you remove the mask."
    • Chances are, they did. Aang didn't wear a mask simply because he didn't have a mask - there's no reason to think that nobody has ever tried that before.
    • Some of Koh's faces resembled masks. They were probably other spirits, but they could just as well have been masks. Some masks only exist to portray an emotion (think comedy and tragedy). Then, why would someone wear an emotional mask if it could be taken by Koh. Or, would wearing a mask in itself be a sign of fear?

     Zuko's lineage - what does it mean? 
  • Maybe I'm missing something, but what was the significance of the revelation that Roku was Zuko's great-grandfather? It never gets mentioned again after that scene, and it doesn't seem to factor into Zuko's decision to leave the Fire Nation, so what difference did it make to the plot?
    • It gave Zuko more reason to reflect on whether or not he had made the right choice with his actions, and probably helped tipped towards his ultimate decision.
    • The answer is fairly simple - most of Zuko's actions early on were done under the pretence of him acting for the sake of his family. He was simply too dependant on them, having lived as "the worse child" and then being banished for expressing his own opinion. Notice how he kept on saying that "he has to do this or that so that his father would give him back his honour". Later, he starts developing doubts about the whole thing, and was torn between his desire to stand on the side of Avatar and on the side of his family. And then he learned that the Avatar was also (kind of) his family, and he noticed that his life doesn't have to be defined by helping the royal family "because his ancestors were Firelords". So, to sum it up, the significance of it is that it allowed Zuko to think on his own, without caring about his family or honour.
    • Perhaps the idea was to show Zuko that he could not just honor his heritage by advancing the war, but also honor his heritage opposing the war. Also, it showed that Sozin (presumably the greatest firebender of his time) was good friends with the Avatar. This brings the Avatar down to a relatable level. The Avatar isn't just some monolithic, legendary figure, he is also someone's friend.

  • How the hell does Katara know how to do yoga? Where did she even learn about it? Is it well-known in the Southern Water Tribe, but it was somehow never mentioned until the "Nightmares and Daydreams" episode?
    • Not everything the Gaang picks up over the course of their travels is Bending-related.

     The TRUE story 
  • So what actually happened to Jin Wei and Wei Jin in the backstory of "The Great Divide"? Aang made his version up, and both tribes are Unreliable Narrators, but it just bugs me that we never learn the actual story.
    • Something happened. The point was that at least one side was wrong in regard to the story because of which they were fighting, with it being known that none of them would ever find out what really happened because it happened so long ago, and yet they still continued to fight because to do otherwise would be to admit they were wrong. And then came Aang who gave them some sort of reason—by presenting his own version of their story and claiming he knew it to be true—to stop it; therefore, it doesn't matter what really happened. Albeit I do understand your sentiment, it just bugs me how sometimes we can't accept that there is a story we won't get to know the details of (even though I am guilty of wanting to learn of it too).

     Roku forces one, but not the other? 
  • Jeong-Jeong refuses to teach Aang because he's not ready. Roku shows up and says "Bitch, yes you will!" Pakku refuses to teach Aang because Aang is teaching Katara waterbending behind his back. Roku doesn't show up and say "Bitch, yes you will!" What's the deal there? Jeong-Jeong's reasons for refusal were portrayed as spot on the money, but Roku intervenes and forces him to teach Aang firebending for no reason. Pakku's reasons for refusal were based entirely on his own personal beliefs, which are portrayed as backwards and Roku doesn't lift one damn finger?
    • For all Roku knew, Jeong-Jeong was the only chance Aang was ever going to get to find a friendly firebending teacher. So to Roku's mind, if Aang didn't train with him, he was never going to train in firebending. Pakku, by contrast, is not the only waterbender who might be able to teach Aang.
    • Also, remember that Roku was a Fire Avatar. Jeong-Jeong would have revered him even more than the usual reverence for an Avatar, but Pakku might very well have been even more prejudiced against Aang if Roku showed up.
    • Furthermore, Aang was right on top of the Real-World locus of Water energies, so Roku might not even have been able to manifest in the Real World.
    • Agreeing with the idea that Roku didn't intervene with Pakku because, at the time, Aang was at the North Water tribe city. There were other Water-benders he could learn from, Pakku was just one of the best (if not the best). When they meet Jeong-Jeong though, the options for Aang learning fire-bending are few and/or inaccessible. At that point the only friendly Fire-benders they've met are Iroh (though they don't know that at that point do they?), and that Fire sage (who was arrested so can't really help).
    • Jeong-Jeong was at the time one of only three people who would even consider teaching Aang to Fire Bend, the other two being Iroh and the loyal sage from the Fire Temple. We don't know if Roku or any of the past Avatar spirits knew about either of these other people. Aang on the other hand already HAD access to a master Water Bender. Aang was sneaking teaching behind his back sure but it was for what? A few days at the most? After which he nearly immediately declares Katara a master. She couldn't possibly have learned a whole lot in that period of time, maybe given her a tip or two she wouldn't have discovered on her own but if Aang was capable of absorbing the information it was something that Katara could likely master as fast or faster. Or in short Roku didn't step in because he was confident Katara was good enough to train Aang by contrast he had no confidence that Aang could even find another fire bender to train him.
    • Pakku didn't refuse to teach Aang because teaching Aang was inherently against his [culture's] beliefs. He was perfectly okay with teaching Aang at first, and only refused after Aang knowingly did something that challenged his people's beliefs, by training Katara behind his back. And then he offered to accept Aang back once Katara apologized. Roku could've been expecting for Katara to yield in this instance, to prioritize the fate of the world over her own pride and wait until they'd left the city for Aang to teach her.

     Putting the play together 
  • In "The Ember Island Players", how was anyone able to write an entire play of the Gaang's MANY past adventures? To accurately do so would mean following them every single second 24/7.
    • Did you miss the part where the play got tons and tons of stuff completely wrong?
      • The fact that play writers knew about the first two episodes, the Southern Air Temple, their meeting with the Kyoshi warriors, the Waterbending scroll, Toph's first appearance, Yui, the entire Ba Sing Se incident, Jet's death, Zuko's Face–Heel Turn, etc., almost as if they knew this was a series on Nickelodeon.
      • The play is stated to have been written as a result of months of research, during which the writers consulted many different sources, including the Singing Nomads, the Pirates, various war prisoners, and a "surprisingly knowledgeable Cabbage Merchant".

     The drill worked! 
  • Regarding the drill from mid-season 2, didn't it actually work? Everyone acts like it failed but it did drill straight through the wall. why does it being shut down after somehow stop the invasion?
    • Because it's still stuck in the hole. There's no room to get people through.

     Just create more airbenders 
  • So at the end of the series, Aang can energybend. And energybending can turn benders into non-benders and vice versa. So why not turn all (or at least some of) the Air Acolytes into airbenders? From what I've seen, none of them even are benders anyway, and it would allow for more than four airbenders by the time Korra starts.
    • He may not be able to choose what kind of element they get. Bending is, at least in part, genetics, so it may not be possible for him to give Airbending to someone who doesn't have Airbender ancestry already.
    • Besides this, Aang was never seen giving bending to nonbenders in either series, so it's possible that he couldn't do it at all, only the lion turtles could. Korra didn't do this either, she just healed benders who were previously depowered by Amon, and that is described as more of an advanced form of chi-blocking than like what Aang did to Ozai and Yakone.
    • According to the Avatar Wiki, the lion turtles originally each belonged to one of four elements, and they could only grant the bending of that element to a person. With this in mind, Aang could be limited to giving out the element of whatever the lion turtle who helped him had been affiliated with. (The wiki hints that it was fire.)

  • A minor quibble that's been bugging me for ages: is it "Fire Lord" or "Firelord"? Sources are inconsistent on that.
    • The Avatar Wiki says: In official sources, both "Fire Lord" and "Firelord" are used; either spelling is acceptable.

     What became of the Painted Lady? 
  • I really don't get the ending of The Painted Lady. So if the spirit was real all along, why didn't she help the villagers? Her "thank you" to Katara at the end suggests that she either wasn't real, but Katara's actions brought her to life, or that she cannot influence the material world unless she finds some sort of a vessel willing to help... I don't even know.
    • It's probably because the water was too foul for her presence and drove her away, or reduced her power.

     Collateral damage 
  • Here's one that I can't find mentioned or discussed on the Internet ANYWHERE, but is glaringly obvious to me.
    Why weren't the air temples destroyed (or at least severely damaged) in the air nomad genocide?! We've seen how much collateral damage firebenders do, especially with Sozin's comet. Even if they were TRYING not to damage them, they still should've come out a lot worse than they did. (except perhaps the eastern air temple, which WAS pretty badly damaged, but I'd still expect a lot worse. And even that could be put down to decay because of a lack of maintenance over 100 years) At the very least the doors to the air temple sanctuaries and the metal defense wall at the western air temple (which should have been knocked off the cliff) should have been destroyed, since many of the air nomads would have hidden behind them! We even see the air temples burning in the avatar and the firelord, yet there aren't even scorch marks! I can't think of any satisfactory in-universe explanation for this. It can't be because the temples are super tough, because the fire nation was going to destroy the northern air temple in "the northern air temple." Also, combustion man destroyed part of the western air temple, and nearly knocked the whole thing right off the cliff.
    • Perhaps they didn't consider it worth the effort at the moment, goal was to kill air benders and then move to do first strike on everyone else. So rather than waste time on destroying stuff that really didn't matter, they just headed off to next fight. After that, perhaps they decided it was not worth the effort to get troops back to nearly-inaccessible temples just for some vandalism.
      • You obviously didn't read the full post. I'm not asking why the firebenders didn't destroy the temples just for the heck of it, I'm asking why they weren't destroyed as collateral damage in the attack which logically they should have been.
      • Why bother? They didn't have the need to when you're able to raid the mountains and kill the people. Also worth noting is that it's not just in present time when the temples were attacked; but 100 years ago; probably before the technology for massive bombs were made readily available.

     Zuko vs. Katara 
  • What's the Word of God behind Zuko's Worf Had the Flu moment in book 1 finale? It's not in the Avatar Extras, in the audio commentary or in the art book.
    • Uh, what are you referring to?
      • You mean that moment when he was fighting a waterbender on an iceberg in the middle of the ocean, at night, during the full moon?

     Opening the sanctuary doors 
  • In "The Winter Solstice Part Two: Avatar Roku", Shiyu says that a fully realized Avatar can open the sanctuary doors alone. So, um, how, exactly? Can a fully realized Avatar shoot one blast with power equal to that of an adept firebender's punch out of each finger on one hand? And if so, why is that potential destructive power never mentioned again or harnessed (more likely by Korra later on than Aang, but still)?
    • It is, watch the finale — Aang, in the Avatar State, sends five fireblasts out simultaneously, while Ozai can only manage three at a time.
    • Specifically, one of the fire blasts comes from Aang's mouth, two from his hands, and the final two through his feet. Ozai manages a few different combinations of these himself, but he's never shown pulling off all five at once.

     Surviving without a face 
  • Another Koh question: How does someone survive after having their face taken by Koh? I mean, certain parts of the face, like the nose and mouth, are needed for such things as respiration and eating.
    • My guess is that they can't. Isn't the only time we see something faceless in the spirit world?

     Was that supposed to be a joke? 
  • In the finale, the Gaang tries going to June and her giant mole-thing for helping tracking Aang, and Sokka recognizes her as the one Zuko used to hunt them down in the first season. Zuko's only response to this is something like "Yep...Back in the good old days." Considering he's supposed to have been fully initiated into the group by this point, and later acknowledges that he and Aang have become he saying here that he preferred hunting them down to being friends with them? Or was it just a dry, badly delivered attempt at humor?
    • Yeah, its humor. Zuko has spent his life around stern, stiff generals and soldiers and psychotic family members. The only guy he's ever known with a sense of humor is his uncle, who he has looked down and belittled for years. Is it any surprise his humor is stiff and sometimes insensitive? It's snark and dry wit.

     Why not use makeup for the scar? 
  • In "The Ember Island Players," why didn't the theatre just use makeup to imitate Zuko's scar, instead of an obvious mask over part of his face? They'd already used it at several other points throughout the play?
    • Scars are extremely time consuming to portray using makeup, in fact it may have been almost impossible using their techniques, so a mask is better for suspension of disbelief. The other makeup is for easy things such as tattoos or to make the actors and actresses look nicer, which is thousands of years old.

     Learning to energybend 
  • So why did that lion turtle grant Aang the power to energybend so easily? All Aang did was tell him what his problem was, basically that someone was causing trouble and he needed a way to defeat them without killing them. It wasn't even something Aang needed, either, since killing Ozai only went against his personal beliefs. Sooner or later, he could've brought himself to do it, if he had to.
    • No he couldn't bring himself to do it, no he didn't want to do it, and no he wasn't going to do it. That was the entire point of him finding the lion turtle in the first place. He desired a different means of defeating Ozai without killing him; and thus found one through the lion turtle.

     The warden's interference 
  • In "The Boiling Rock," why didn't the escapees just knock the warden out to ensure he wouldn't interfere with their plan? Was there anything that required him to be conscious the entire time?
    • An admitted short-sight on the protagonists's part. They thought they had him tied up tight and didn't think he'd ACTUALLY go the distance to have the line cut with him on it.

     Escape attempts 
  • How has the Boiling Rock managed to maintain a 0% escape record? It's stated to be the highest-security prison in the Fire Nation, meaning only the highest-security prisoners get sent there, and judging by the riot scene, a good number of them seem to be firebenders. This is the earthbending scene from the movie all over again - it looks like the prisoners would have an easy enough time rallying together for the purpose of a mass breakout, so why don't they just do that?
    • Because the second it became clear the guards couldn't handle the situation the Warden would cut the lines to the gondola. He made it absolutely clear, and even backed it up, that he'd rather die than let any of them escape. Since nobody can get across the boiling lake on their own a mass breakout is doomed to failure. Only a small group that evades detection has any chance.
    • ...Also, it makes for a really weird call back to season 2: If they cut the gondola line, he'll fall and die. If they don't and the prisoners escape, he's got to answer to Azula. Hence, CUT THE LINE!

     Searching for Aang 
  • After Zuko kidnapped Aang during the siege on the North Pole, why was Katara and Sokka's first instinct to go out into the storm to look for him, when there was an entire Fire Nation fleet bombarding the city at that very moment? Wouldn't they have expected him to take Aang back to the ships?
    • I'd imagine witnessing the conflict between Zuko and Zhao when they met Jeong Jeong indicates that they knew Zuko's estranged from the Fire Nation, so they knew not to look for him there.

     Messaging Zuko 
  • How did Iroh manage to send the message to Zuko about his great-grandfather, when he was locked away in prison and doing his best to fool the guards into thinking he was senile and crazy?
    • The Order of the White Lotus is all over the place, all it would take would eb one operative somewhere in the prison to get a message out.

     Fire Nation refugees 
  • So how big a deal was it that there were two firebenders living in Ba Sing Se? Wouldn't there be people from the Fire Nation who might've desired to leave their country and find a new life elsewhere?
    • Two Firebenders that are matching Azula's wanted posters? Even if they didn't; remember Zuko Alone. Enmity and hatred towards the Fire Nation is rampant because of the war they've started and are still going strong with for over 100 years. Even if they ended up being the best damn tea-makers in the city; the political attitudes of the Earth Citizenry could have made things really messy really fast.
    • Also, the Fire Nation is winning the war. If you were a Fire Nation citizen and wanted to leave, would you go to the nation you're invading that is losing that war?

     Just let him go off on his own, he'll be fine. 
  • I understand why the show's developers would want to put the Earth King on a bus for season 3 - so that Team Avatar doesn't have to keep looking after him, and because he's seemingly useless in combat - but was it really a bright idea for him to basically go get himself lost in the Earth Kingdom? I know it's made out to be him exploring, and a look at the lives of some of his citizens is just the thing he needs after being kept in the dark for so long...but that's also the point. He's naive and inexperienced. How is he going to support himself? The Fire Nation has basically conquered the Earth Kingdom by this point - what if somebody recognizes him? And if something were to happen to him, what would happen to the throne once Ozai is overthrown and the war ends? Even him getting back to Ba Sing Se would seem to be an issue; is Aang just going to tell the world, "Hey, guys, uh...I'd love to reinstate your former king right about now, but he's kinda still out travelling somewhere...We'll just have to wait for him to get back...Should only be a few days...or weeks...or years, possibly."
    • I'd imagine it being obscenely difficult (just going off of the rarity of owning a Bear) for Kuei to go far before someone offers him a home and hospitality. There's more ways to survive than just being out in the wild.

     Impractical Aang 
  • Season 3, episode 1: Sokka tells Aang they're going out to get some food and to put on a headband to cover his tattoo. Aang says something like "I'm not going out there if I can't wear my arrow with pride!" I know he's upset about the whole world thinking he was dead, but he's willingly covered up his tattoo before, and he and his friends are supposed to be the crew of a Fire Nation ship. Even if everyone didn't think he'd died, wouldn't covering up the tattoo be the safest option anyway?
    • Aang had crossed emotions. He didn't want everyone to think he was dead was the overall point, and most of the world knew the avatar was the last airbender alive at the time. It was more that just averting distraction before; his honor was sullied when he lost to Zuko and Azula. It was more of a point of pride this time around to try to fix things when he lost. He comes to realize at the end of the episode that his pride was getting in the way of his better judgment and decided to hide the tattoos again.

     Returning from the Spirit World 
  • When Aang returns from the Spirit World during "The Siege of the North", he appears briefly at the oasis where he entered it, before turning into a streak of light that automatically returns to his body in the cave where Zuko is holding him. I get that this allowed Katara and Sokka to find him in the storm, but that seemed a little like a Deus ex Machina. Why did he return to his body automatically this time when the last time he ended up in the Spirit World, he had to be taken to it by Fang?

     The means to an end, minus the means 
  • The reason Aang has to defeat Ozai before the comet arrives is given as: Ozai will use it to end the war with a blow so devastating that even Aang wouldn't be able to restore balance to the world. But what sort of final blow did Ozai have in mind? Burning down the Earth Kingdom was only possible because the Fire Nation had developed airships, which were only created after they found a discarded one after the battle at the Northern Air Temple. What was his plan for before they discovered that?
    • Odds are good that the siege would've been done across the land to do as much damage as possible. Scorched Earth is a viable strategy. The birth of aerial combat via blimps and what not gave them an accelerated means of accomplishing the task; but had they not have air support, there would've been other means Ozai was bound to take.

     Knowledge of Zuko's backstory 
  • In "Zuko Alone," Zuko reveals his identity in a tiny, backwater, landlocked village in the Earth Kingdom, and the townspeople immediately recognize him AND know his backstory. Yet no one in the entire Fire Nation colonies or even most of the Fire Nation proper knows how Zuko got his scar, or recognizes him at all. How in the heck did a little village on the other side of the world end up with that knowledge?
    • no one in the entire Fire Nation colonies or even most of the Fire Nation proper knows how Zuko got his scar That is an unsupported assumption. The show never states that no one knows it. As for why they'd know the story but not recognize him? Stories spread more easily than pictures in a society with a tech level like the Avatar world. You're also comparing the early season — when Zuko is an exile, but still part of the Fire Nation and the royal family — to the latter season, when he's a wanted fugitive. In the first instance, the details might not be spread to avoid embarrassment; in the latter, the story will be spread to make it more likely someone can catch him.

     Breaking into the prison 
  • How did Sokka and Zuko make it into the Boiling Rock and find the room with the guard uniforms without drawing any attention to themselves? For all that the episode builds the prison up as being inescapable, it just brushes past all the details of how they got inside to begin with.


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