When I heard the Nickelodeon show Avatar the Last Airbender was coming to Netflix, I leaped for joy! Well, on the inside, at least. I can recall watching the first episode in 2004 and discussing favorite scenes with my friend at the time. This series was unlike anything I have ever seen on Nickelodeon. 12-year-old monk Aang becomes the long-awaited reincarnated Avatar sent to save the world and bring balance between all four nations. These nations consist of the four elements of Earth, Fire, Air, and Water. Aang was preserved in an iceberg for 100 years near water tribe members Katara and Sokka’s village. Sokka and Katara free Aang and find out he is the Avatar. The Avatar is the master of all four elements that each nation posses through bending, which consists of manipulating the four elements through supernatural abilities. Sokka and Katara help Anag reconnect with his past lives to defeat the warring fire nation. Prince Zukko, Uncle Iroh, Azula ( Prince Zukko’s sister), Ty Lee, Mae, and others make up this fire nation. Other characters in the show include Toph, whose blind but becomes one of the greatest earth benders in her land.
Avatar the Last Airbender, was created by Micheal Dante Di Martino and Bryan Konietzko. It originally aired between 2005 to 2008 on Nickelodeon for three seasons. The success of the show spawned various comic books and spinoff series such as The Legend of Korra, which was progressive for its time in featuring LGBTQ characters in a children’s series. Avatar inspired a movie of the same title by M. Night Shyamalan, which we do not discuss in open circles, so let’s move on. According to Vox.com, the Avatar series on Netflix is meant to build anticipation for a live adaptation for the streaming service. Another live-action adaptation? Maybe Netflix will get it, right? I think the fans are deserving of it. Indie Wire.com reports that Netflix’s adaptation of the animated series will include the show’s creators, who will be executive producers for the new project. Stay tuned for more details on this exciting project. The image below consists of some of the martial arts styles included in the show by actual martial arts consultants .
Image from Pinterest
Avatar the Last Airbender, was unique in that it included various Asian influences such as; martial arts, philosophy, religion, and art. The coolest aspect of the show is how each nation incorporates martial art styles based on the four earth elements. Waterbending (Tai Chi), Earthbending (Hung Gar), Airbending (Ba Gua Zhang), and Firebending (Northern Shaolin). Aside from its martial art influence, the show incorporates themes such as environmental issues, totalitarianism, the sanctity of life, spirituality, forgiveness, and redemption. These themes are woven through every episode, especially Prince Zukko of the Fire Nation seeking redemption from his Father by capturing the Avatar. But do not be fooled; this is still an animated show that balances great themes with humor. Children and Adults alike will fall in love with the show and learn some essential life lessons. How often does an animated series teach you life lessons as well as make you laugh your butt off? If you are interested in a great anime with quirky humor, plot twists, character arcs, life lessons, martial arts, and tons of action, this show is for you! Avatar the Last Airbender, is currently streaming on Netflix. Also, check out the sequel to this series The Legend of Korra now streaming on CBS All Access.
Originally Nickelodeon Trailer 2004 .
FYI: I meant to add this link in the article but here are the show’s creators discussing how they pitched Avatar the Last Airbender to Nickelodeon and the creative writing process: https://www.nickanimation.com/michael-dante-dimartino-bryan-konietzko
( Librarian Ninja Girl)