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  • Michael Dante dimartino and Bryan konietzko are incredibly inspirational people, having

  • through their work ignited my own interest in the power of animated television. I hold

  • them in the highest regard, and would love it if they saw this video. Having said that,

  • i'm now going to burn all these budding bridges by talking about why Korra sucks.

  • Nah, I'm not hatin'. Well, to be pedantic I don't really set out to hate on anything,

  • though many find my critiques blasphemous. I'm incredibly fond of the Avatar franchise

  • and Korra is no exception. I love the world, the style, the music, the ideas, and the characters-

  • not to mention that Janet Varney is absolutely adorable. I LOVE YOU.

  • Which is why it pains me to have anything bad to say at all. I still maintain that the

  • first few episodes of Korra are perfection and the original series, Avatar the last Airbender,

  • is my overall favourite animated show. Sadly, it's clear that the latest incarnation is

  • somewhat lacking. I worry that the creators believe all the critics are variations on

  • the eternal fanboy and have thereby disregarded many arguments. I like to think that I could

  • offer more eloquence to some of these points of contention- i mean not to blow my own trumpet

  • butactually, eh, fuck it. With book 3 on its way I'm keen to address this series while

  • it's still fresh in my mind- and while I will be looking at what doesn't work, I will also

  • give credit where credit is due.

  • Avatar is set in a world where people are born with the ability to bend the elements- coming in flavours of

  • earth, air, water, fire, and absolutely normal. The Avatar is a reincarnated deity who has

  • the ability to control all of these elements, and therefore can bring balance to the world

  • when things get a bit rowdy. The avatar is also able to act as the bridge between the

  • spirit world and the mortal realm.

  • In the original series, the overarching plot was set right from the get-go- Aang had to

  • learn his skills and bring balance to the world by stopping the fire nation. This became

  • the forward momentum for everything that followed, allowing the focus to fall on character development

  • and evolving perspectives on the entirety of the situations context. Exposition felt

  • progressional, not retractive.

  • Korra does have an overall agenda but also ekes out plot details bit by bit purely for

  • exposition, and the goalposts shift almost every episode come the second season. Now

  • on the one hand this does work if the plan is to really pull the rug out from people's

  • feet and create a sense of mystery, but the surprises and twists offered are often incredibly

  • superficial, offering little sense of weight or insight. Our characters are active in pursuing

  • a goal but aren't very good at questioning anything in same way as their predecessors.

  • Some threads also simply just don't tie together as neatly as they could- Season 2's adventures

  • in republic city could probably have been their own series outside of the spiritual

  • unrest Korra and Tenzin dealt with, and they pair together rather poorly compared to the

  • parallels between Aang and Zuko's stories of gaining independence and self discovery.

  • The encompassing issue that creates this is that ATLA had real growth, and Korra doesn't.

  • This is present in three distinct perspectives i'm going to cover- spirituality, physicality

  • and empathy. So let's start with the spirits.

  • Spirituality and physicality were highly allegorical in ATLA- the spirits were deliberately mysterious

  • and unexplained because it leant more focus to the actual struggle Aang was going through.

  • They weren't simply black and white in their makeup (well, except for that guy.) They were

  • there with specific purposes, even if it was to set the tone, express the difference in

  • style from the physical realm or hint at previous endeavours that fed into Aang's current plight.

  • Same can be said of his physical trials which were more than simply overcoming obstacles-

  • With each lesson, Aang learns how to control his abilities and emotions- but in doing so

  • has to by proxy change his behaviour and outlook in order to master them. He is forced to change

  • as a person, and as he changes, the way he decides to solve the overall problem changes

  • with it. As a result each lesson, each bit of exposition, each interaction and facet

  • added to his repertoire feels utterly necessary and fulfilling, because we feel Aang's growth

  • offer a sense of progression.

  • Spirituality for Korra, until the last episode of season 2, was merely a means of plot dumping.

  • Through spirituality Korra accesses flashbacks which only give her a basic understanding

  • of the semantics of what must be done and to whom. They offer no personal understanding

  • and are often far removed from her own experiences, which makes it difficult to care for her journey.

  • There comes a point in season one where the plot hands itself over to an event that feels

  • far too detached from the political ideology and character relationships presented to really

  • invest emotionally in the outcome. In season 2 this continues to be an issue, though frustratingly

  • so as the character she should be relating to in question is someone she shares family

  • history with- not to mention there was actually the potential for a story about the misuse

  • of spiritual guidance. No amount of Godzilla can make up for that. (roar)

  • Korra's physical prowess is basically rendered pointless to serialise because it's done in

  • a manner of convenience. As a hotheaded character Korra relies a lot on her powers and relishes

  • the ability to use them, which obviously hampers her foresight in using them effectively later

  • on when they're removed. Not a difficult dramatic arc to pinpoint overall. Sadly the way it's

  • handled doesn't belie it's predictability. She only uses an ability because it's the

  • only thing left available to her, but she doesn't learn anything about it or learn from

  • the surrounding circumstances that had her resort to said power in the process, leaving

  • her at the same point of understanding as at the start of the series. These ultimately

  • feel like Deus Ex Machinas even if they're passingly explained because we don't experience

  • an understanding of them on any kind of relateable level.

  • At one point all her powers are taken away and are then given back without consequence-

  • which is a damn shame. There was the potential to create a very nice contrast from ATLA-

  • Aang was always reluctant to use his powers while Korra took them for granted. He was

  • forced into using them to actively save the day and appreciate his potential, while Korra

  • could have learnt to work within the limitations to truly become a more rounded Avatar. The

  • yin, and the yang, so to speak. Ah! It was so good to see Iroh again and his soothing

  • Jasmine tea.

  • The last part is empathy. Aang begins life as not only a child but a sheltered one. His

  • re-introduction to the rest of the world means that his journey instructs both the audience

  • and Aang from the ground up on the many differing perspectives and values held within that world.

  • With each new meeting Aang gains a new understanding on how to deal with the problems before him.

  • For example, his dealing with Fire Lord Ozai which is a conclusion drawn from his experience

  • from the entire journey. He knows that if he kills the fire lord he will create a martyr

  • to the fire nations cause and violate his own principles. However if he leaves him be,

  • he will cause unrest and probably be blamed for being ineffective. It's debatable that

  • the final conflict is achieved in a satisfactory manner but the ending does satisfy the ultimate

  • arc of the series and the character arcs present.

  • Korra doesn't really gain any insight into her foes or her friends, and they in return

  • seem to be too wrapped up in themselves to have anything resembling meaningful interactions.

  • We catch glimpses of it but it almost feels like a lot of characters are just talking

  • to themselves and establishing they are, in fact, that kind of character. There's a clear

  • deficiency in the dialogue as a result- you only have to compare some of the nuanced dialogue

  • in ATLA to Korra to see what I mean. As a result incredibly intriguing issues are left

  • feeling moot. The Equalists never come to any understanding with Korra or their bending

  • peers and are explained away under a new president at the start of season 2. The mob which is

  • so prominently given notice in episode one also only appears as a plot device now and

  • then, which is rather aggravating when their minuscule character development seems more

  • interesting than that of our leads. The spirits are surely still hampered by negative energy

  • within the real world and are clearly unfit in many ways to live amongst normal people.

  • Overall the series just lacks that extra level of humanity. It's slowly becoming a show that

  • draws on skewed sentimentality and world building rather than concentrating on the sincerity

  • and frankness that made the original series so solid.

  • But you know what? Some of this stuff is addressed, which is what makes this really frustrating,

  • and proof that these writers are capable of more.

  • The first couple episodes of season one and the last half of season 2 really do a great

  • job of combating my issues. Season one starts with Korra fighting against the element of

  • air until she realises it can actually improve her overall physicality outside of being the

  • avatar. She experiences the entire range of citizens and the idea that the Avatar may

  • in fact be a flawed concept. Nepotism is covered in a way most series ignore, with the children

  • of ATLA's heroes burdened with living up to their parents and having to deal with the

  • legacy of their actions. We have a villain who brings up political manipulation under

  • a genuinely imposing guise and one who invokes the idea of blind faith in a world where we

  • know it may not be so misplaced. The Avatar as a concept is explained very well and the

  • lack of fulfillment within the first avatar feels incredibly moving. Bolin and Mako achieve

  • some much needed character development, pitted against each other as Bolin's selfishness

  • and naivety begins to blossom. And of course, Avatar always manages to keep its sense of

  • humour while balancing it against dashes of real pathos- including perhaps the best thing

  • to happen to the series in a long time. (cut to varrick)

  • Korra herself finally goes through that long awaited growth, and while it may feel like

  • too little, too late, it is well conveyed. She finds herself manipulated and turned into

  • a political figurehead. She finds that her capacity for strong relationships is tested

  • by her duties as the Avatar. She has her legacy literally ripped away from her, and when she

  • emerges after realising that her strength comes from her own being and not her predecessors

  • nor the spirit she is the avatar of, she finds herself emotionally and spiritually drained.

  • She has grown into a shaken, weary avatar, who's experimental decisions will perhaps

  • hurt her in the future. Her sense of humour, her willingness towards aggression is gone,

  • and she will have to rely more on her own intuition as time goes on.

  • This simultaneously sets up hopes and fears for the progression come Season 3. With a

  • title likechange' there's a lot of potential for this to be a series that really puts Korra

  • back on track, and to hopefully win back a lot of viewers. I worry that such a wonderful

  • franchise and concept with be marred by poor handling and misguided notions- and yet I

  • know that with every installment, their integrity is always present, and their love of what

  • they have set forth is always evident. Mike, Bri, you guys have a wonderful thing going

  • here, and I'm sure that you'll give it the dignity it deserves. (Varrick poops money).

  • Heh, poop.

Michael Dante dimartino and Bryan konietzko are incredibly inspirational people, having

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科拉傳說》分析。元素錯誤?| 超越圖片 (The Legend of Korra Analysis: Elemental Errors? | Beyond Pictures)

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    Hhart Budha 發佈於 2021 年 01 月 14 日
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