dude I forgot just how good the Boiling Rock episodes are. not only are they freaking funny (“that’s rough buddy”, “the only thing we’re hatching is…. an egg?”, “HEY. RIOT.”, “just take a bite out of the silver sandwich!”) and not only is the action really good (suki capturing the warden, zuko and sokka vs. azula) but those episodes are so important for mai and ty lee. mai and ty lee get 0.5 minutes of character depth in The Beach but their individual decisions to betray azula show more of their characters than any other moment in the show. this episode is supposed to be sokka and zuko’s episode, but it’s mai, ty lee, and azula who really star. this is the episode that made me love mai.
for mai, the decision to betray azula, ty lee, her uncle, and her country for the sake of one person - zuko - speaks volumes. this is the girl who doesn’t care about anything. she had nothing to gain from letting zuko and the others go free. but she loved zuko so much despite the wrongs he had done her that she had the courage to defy azula.
and ty lee, who wants everyone to get along, who fawns on azula for her ruthlessness, beauty, and power, neutralizes her “friend” when her true friend’s life is threatened. ty lee finally takes action against azula’s abuse, something I think she has been building up the courage to do. she shows her true colors and risks azula’s wrath to save mai. mai and ty lee’s betrayal triggers the beginning of azula’s madness, and eventually her downfall.
and the zuko/sokka parallels and contrasts give me life. zuko is totally a P-type person who carries out plans by the seat of his pants. he’s trying to get the better of that habit, but sokka, the J-type, denies his always-plan-ahead nature in favor of a different, more zuko-esque strategy. I love to see these two boys of seemingly opposite temperaments find out they have a lot more in common.
Other great things:
- “I think you mean watch WHOM I’m shoving!”
- “I’m never happy.”
- Hakoda in general
- “you can’t quit just because you’re afraid you might fail.”
- “we’ve already met.” “we have?” “yeah, you kinda burned down my village.” “oh. sorry about that. *beat* nice to see you again.”