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Recap / The Legend Of Korra S 4 E 12 Day Of The Colossus

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It was a bad day for Republic City.

Team Avatar and their allies clash with Kuvira and her Colossus on the streets of Republic City.


  • The Atoner:
    • Baatar Jr. is willing to make up for his past deeds.
    • Hiroshi Sato is eager to redeem himself.
  • Attack Its Weak Point: This trope is shown in various forms on the Colossus. Our Heroes are throwing any idea for this at the metal monster as they can, but it's just too well-designed and the trope ends up defied time and time again. Even the final successful plan had complications and exacted a terrible price.
    • The first idea is to have the metalbenders go for the joints and tip the mech over, but they're shielded by platinum. Metal cables are also used, but their tensile strength isn't enough to restrain the sheer mass of the thing, even when combined with a push from a lot of airbenders airblasting (including Korra) and its foot stuck in a depressed pit of lava by Bolin.
    • Meelo hatches a plan for the airbenders to blind the cockpit with makeshift paint bombs, but it has water jets to spray off any paint.
    • Varrick tries to scale up his EMP, but the Colossus uses spirit vine energy as a power source and isn't affected (although the pulse does knock out all the nearby conventional mecha-troopers).
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    • Bolin and the Beifong Sisters try to topple buildings onto it, but it only slows it down and temporarily knocks it over.
    • Hiroshi gets the idea to infiltrate the mech and attack it from the inside, damaging its more vulnerable inner mechanisms. To this end, Asami and Varrick's hummingbird suits are outfitted with plasma cutters to get through the platinum shell. The plan is complicated in that the Colossus can reach anywhere on its body with its hands to swat away sappers (a problem foreseen by Varrick, though not the sheer dexterity the Colossus had), and even Korra using water from a nearby channel to freeze it in place only bought a few moments extra time for the job. Hiroshi knew full well that he'd pay with his life to finish the job when he ejected Asami before being swatted himself... but he succeeded in making a man-hole breach.
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  • Badass Cape: You can easily pick out which airbender flying in a formation of them is Tenzin by his trademark billowing cape.
  • Beam Spam: Kuvira sure likes shooting that cannon...
  • Big Damn Kiss: Varrick and Zhu Li have one when he proposes to her.
  • The Beastmaster: Wu manages to use his singing voice to get a pair of badgermoles to help dig a tunnel for the remaining evacuees to escape through (much to the dismay of the evacuees, who, Grandma Yin aside, hate the singing). He even gets them to take out three mecha-troopers that followed them!
  • Bridal Carry: Bolin carries an injured Opal away in his arms.
  • Broken Pedestal: Baatar Jr's reaction towards Kuvira is despair and betrayal after she proves willing to sacrifice him for her ambitions.
  • Call-Back:
    • Varrick replicates his EMP from "Reunion" on a much larger scale using Future Industries' tower. Though it takes out two platoons of mecha-suits, the Colossus runs on spirit vine power and isn't affected.
    • Badgermoles will do what you want if you sing badly to them.
    • The airbenders are on the attack again with a combo-powered vortex, this time to dive-bomb Kuvira's cannon to throw its aim off right as it's firing.
  • Comically Missing the Point: Teased but averted; Varrick seems like he's comparing Zhu Li to an ostrich-horse he had as a kid, but he's trying to explain that he's sorry he never really appreciated her.
  • Continuity Nod:
    • In one of the wide shots of the Colossus, the Future Industries advertisement from "Reunion" can be seen on a billboard.
    • Wu sings a song thanking Grandma Yin for taking him in, which happened in "Reunion".
    • Wu was serious about that "trained badgermole" thing from Beyond the Wilds.
  • Crazy-Prepared: The Colossus is prepared for just about any eventuality. The airbenders' initial plan of covering the Colossus' view ports with paint fails because Kuvira has water jets installed on the windows just in case. It has platinum armor to stop metalbenders. There is no point on its body it cannot reach to swat off attackers. It runs on spirit vine energy, not electricity so EMP are useless.
  • Death Glare: The episode ends with Korra giving Kuvira one whilst she is inside the Colossus's leg ready for their final showdown.
  • Dying Declaration of Love:
    Hiroshi: Goodbye, Asami. I love you...
    Asami: DAAAAAAAAAD!!!!
  • Ejection Seat: The hummingbird suits have dual ejection seats which can be independently triggered. Varrick and Zhu Li both eject when their mech gets its wing clipped off, and then played for drama when Hiroshi ejects Asami but not himself, fully cognizant of the mere seconds left needed to finish cutting open the breach before the Colossus breaks free of its ice restraints and crushes him.
  • EMP: Varrick makes a massive one to take out a swath of Kuvira's army. It doesn't work on the Colossus, which is spirit-vine powered, though it does take out two platoons of mecha-suits.
  • Epic Fail: Kuvira's attempt to kill Team Avatar instead only manages to injure Baatar Jr., the only person in the group she actually cares for. This also turns him against her to help the heroes.
  • Facepalm: After the airbenders throw the Colossus's aim off with a Combination Attack vortex right as it fires, Meelo trolls Kuvira by smearing his face on the cockpit canopy in a typical obnoxious 8-year-old boy fashion. Kuvira's immediate response is to try and smush Meelo by commanding the Colossus to facepalm.
  • Foreshadowing: Varrick talking about how he deals with mosquitoes after the analogy to them is made for their plan of attack using the hummingbird mechs, "I swat them!" thus foretelling the fate of one of them.
  • Futile Hand Reach: As her Ejection Seat parachute drifts down, a despondent Asami reaches out towards the wrecked hummingbird mech that held her father.
  • Godzilla Threshold: It's reached the point where the Earthbenders amongst Our Heroes have taken to toppling buildings onto the Colossus in attempts to attack it. Lin releases Hiroshi Sato because they need all the genius they can get their hands on (and if the prison is still standing when this is over, she can throw him back in) and Sato himself considers the expenditure of his own life an acceptable price to pay to breach the armor.
  • Gory Discretion Shot: After Hiroshi ejects Asami from the mecha, we see the Colossus slam its hand down on the mecha, and then the ruined suit falls away...
  • Hair Flip: Zhu Li does one completely inadvertently, which leaves Varrick momentarily dumbstruck while he musters up the guts to propose.
  • Heel Realization: Baatar Jr. finally realizes just what madness he's been doing, and spills as many beans as he can on how to stop the monstrosity he helped create.
  • Heroic Sacrifice:
    • Hiroshi ejects Asami from the hummingbird suit when Kuvira is about to crush it, but stays in himself to finish the job of cutting through the platinum shell.
    • It sounds like Prince Wu is giving himself up to save the civilians, but he's actually buying time for his badgermole buddies to take action.
  • Hoist by His Own Petard: Kuvira's attempt to kill Baatar Jr. only gave him the motivation to betray her, which is ultimately her undoing.
  • I Surrender, Suckers: Prince Wu defeats the earth soldiers by surrendering in song so that his badgermole buddies can sneak attack.
  • The Juggernaut: Nothing stops the Colossus. Lava fails to melt it (it gets out before the lava can heat it up enough), metalbenders are stopped by the platinum shell, wires lack the strength to restrain it, toppling buildings onto it only slows it down, and the cockpit even has sprayers to clear the windows in case they're blocked by something. Korra has to freeze the entire thing solid in ice just to give Hiroshi enough time to cut a hole, and even that doesn't work for very long.
  • Match Cut: Several between The Colossus vaguely humanoid form and Kuvira inside it.
  • Meaningful Echo: Varrick uses the phrase "Do the thing" to propose to Zhu Li, "will you do the thing for the rest of our lives?"
  • Music Soothes the Savage Beast: Prince Wu sings to a pair of badgermoles he took from the zoo, which then do his bidding and create a tunnel for the civilians to escape. They also take out three mecha-suits for him. Unfortunately, nobody else is soothed by it, though Grandma Yin seems to like it.
  • No Endor Holocaust: The only reason Kuvira hasn't racked up a huge bodycount by the end of the episode, with all the buildings she's smashing and blasting, is the fact that all the civilians save the last group at the train station have already been evacuated.
  • Noodle Incident: Varrick's past apparently involves both a farm and a circus at different points.
  • No Plans, No Prototype, No Backup: Averted; Asami has a couple prototypes of the flying mecha at her office. Being prototypes, they don't work as well initially.
  • No-Sell: The Colossus has a platinum shell to stop metalbenders, and is powered by a giant spirit vine cluster which renders it immune to EMP.
  • Oblivious to Love: Varrick finally averts this with Zhu Li, proposing to her before they get in the hummingbird suit.
  • Oh, Crap!:
    • Tenzin and Meelo have a moment of this when they realize they came to a landing right in the path of the Colossus's feet when Meelo caught his father's fall. Thankfully, it stepped over them and went on its merry carnage-inflicting way.
    • Kuvira shows genuine panic once she sees that the Hummingbird suit has successfully cut a hole into the Colossus and desperately tries to crush the heroes before they can enter it.
  • Over-the-Shoulder Carry: After Korra calls a retreat after their first attack run on the Colossus fails, Korra hauls off one of the injured airbenders with a fireman's carry.
  • Plot Armor: Out of more than a dozen main and secondary characters, only Baatar Jr. is actually wounded in the warehouse explosion. Everyone else walks out without so much as a mark to show for it. If you really wanted to justify it, you could say he was the only non-bender and, being tied up, he couldn't get away but even this is a stretch.
  • Reality Ensues:
    • The Colossus is functionally unstoppable against stationary and large objects, but has a lot of trouble against small mobile targets like the airbenders. Granted this doesn't mean much considering it is much more maneuverable than it appears.
    • This trope works against the airbenders as while they are able to dodge the beam itself they are still blown away by the shockwave it produces.
  • Recruiting the Criminal: Lin fetches Hiroshi from prison to aid in fighting the Colossus, on the logic that they need all the genius they can get. She defends her decision by saying they can always put him back, assuming the prison isn't destroyed in the fighting.
  • Redemption Equals Death: Hiroshi dies giving the rest of the team a way into the Colossus.
  • Ship Sinking: Kuvira ruined her and Baatar Jr.'s relationship when she fired the spirit vine cannon on his location.
  • Slasher Smile: Kuvira sports a pretty epic one right after getting rid of the building thrown out at her by Bolin, Su, Lin and the twins.
  • Slow-Motion Fall: We get a good look at Asami's horror in slow-mo as her hummingbird mech Ejection Seat flings her out on her father Hiroshi's command.
  • Stylistic Suck: Wu's singing is terrible but manages to control the badgermoles. Grandma Yin seems to like it but she's biased to royalty.
  • That Reminds Me of a Song: Doubles as Holding the Floor: "Before I go, I'D LIKE TO SING YOU A SONG!!"
  • Took a Level in Badass: Prince Wu uses his singing not only to act as The Beastmaster and get a pair of badgermoles to dig a tunnel to evacuate the remaining civilians at the train station, but stands up to three soldiers in defense of the citizens in mecha-suits while getting said badgermoles in position to take them out.
  • Wacky Marriage Proposal: Played with in that the proposal itself is rather nice, but Varrick's announcement of him and Zhu Li going to fight the Colossus right after sure is wacky.
    Varrick: Now let's go attach these barely functional rust buckets to a giant killer smashing machine!
    Zhu LI: It's exactly how I always pictured our engagement.
  • Would Hurt a Child: Kuvira is well-aware that several of the airbenders are children, but attempts to use her spirit-cannon against them anyway.


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