…and I have to say, I’m really looking forward to the next season. What wonders await us in season 4?
For one thing, I hope we get more character development from Mako. He’s seemed like kind of a static character these last two seasons thus far, which is a shame because he was one of my favorite characters. I always saw him as trying to be both a father figure, big brother and best friend to Bolin in the first season, and struggled between those three roles throughout their time together. But now that Bolin has started growing into his own man- becoming a mover star, getting a new girlfriend and mastering lava-bending- Mako just seems to have been stagnating all the while; not really doing much to make himself stand out. He did get a few good moments, like his time with his grandmother and that sick lightning-bending he did to take out Ming-Hua (although really Mako, you couldn’t have opened up with that before?), but altogether he just seemed to blend in with the background.
Also, I have to say it’s pretty impressive how much physical and mental damage Korra has sustained over the entire show without her dying or completely breaking down. The writers have done a great job in that department- traumatic events in fiction are not easy to handle, and can easily turn a good show into a total narm-fest or just painful to watch. I look forward to seeing how Korra recovers from her latest fight now confined to a wheelchair (temporarily, I hope).
Speaking of that fight, there were a couple things I was anticipating to happen, but didn’t. Whether or not that’s a good thing, I’ll let you decide:
1: When Korra was struggling against the poison in the last episode, desperately trying not to enter the Avatar State and die, some part of me was wondering if Korra was going to force herself not to go into the Avatar state and simply die in her normal form, so that the Avatar cycle of reincarnation would continue with her death. A huge risk of course, both for Korra and the creators of LOK, as the killing of a main character would have been extremely controversial.
2: When Zaheer was defeated and Korra was at the brink of death from the poison, the moment they said “The poison is metal-based, you could bend it out of her body!” I was fully anticipating Bolin to step in and help draw the poison out, finally gaining the focus needed to metal-bend through the fear of losing one of his best friends and former love interest. I was sort of disappointed that that hadn’t happened, but upon reflection I suppose Bolin at this point has accepted that he’s never going to be able to metal-bend, and wouldn’t want to risk killing Korra due to his inability. Besides, he’s already gotten the basics of lava-bending down pat.
With that said, I was both disappointed but also somewhat glad that neither of those things happened, and not just because it would have made an already tragic ending more tragic. I’m a huge animation nerd and after having watched loads of cartoons and animated films, I’ve become more and more aware of various tropes and cliches that often pop up in animation as well as live-action. Often times the outcome of a conflict can be predictable to the point of being boring, so it’s a semi-rare treat to be on the edge of my seat wondering what’s going to happen next. So kudos to the writers again for accomplishing that.
Well, here’s to season 4! You can’t see it, but I’m holding up a drink right now.