Okay so I just rewatched the Legend of Korra series premiere episode, “Welcome to Republic City,” and I have some feelings.
This is a very good episode and a *phenomenal* series opener. I have blogged previously about my love for this episode and I continue to feel it is criminally underrated.
It just lays out the themes for the season – and the series – so damn well. For example, Katara says during Korra’s firebending test, “She’s strong,” to which the White Lotus guy replies, “She lacks restraint.” Five words of dialogue set out one of the major areas for Korra’s character development in the show. And the whole episode itself explores the question of the role of the avatar in the modern world, which of course is another major theme in the series.
I would have loved to see the show explore the income inequality theme introduced in this episode via the hobo in the park. (Though arguably the Fall of Ba Sing Se in Book 3 picks up on this thread.) And of course the show seriously under delivered in its analysis of bender privilege and the oppression of non-benders.
But the point is this episode introduced those fascinating thematic ideas and made me really want to watch the rest of the show. That’s what a great series opener does… even if the rest of the series does not always live up to its fullest potential.
i was rewatching this ep and had to pause to make sure my eyes weren’t deceiving me.
look at this dork. look at him. welcoming pabu into his arms with fucking joy. in book 1 no less, when everyone thought he was a stiff. He has always been the lovable dork that grew on us more and more as the series went on, the only difference is he kept it hidden
I remember reading that after book one, Korra restored everyone’s bending except for possibly a few notable triad members.
But I bet Lin pushed for Korra to give everyone’s bending back. She lost hers, and she knew what it felt like to face the rest of her life without that skill. Korra as well. Criminal or not, they both knew how engrained bending was into their lifestyles and without it is like learning to walk again.