Ok, so this is actually just a series of hilarious PARODY videos. Surprise, I know. But I’ll say a few things about the remake as an excuse to show the videos to anyone who hasn’t seen them yet… or am I using the videos as a way to talk about an idea that occurred to me? Both? Both is good.
I was not into Avatar the Last Airbender (or Legend of Korra for that matter) when it first aired. I was watching REAL anime where people had HAIR. But since it came to Netflix, I got on the hype train and enjoyed it as well as all the memes that came along with it so I was pretty interested when I heard there would be a Netflix live-action remake of the series… not as interested as if they were making an animated R-rated direct sequel set 5-10 years later where they blood bend people’s blood OUT of their body… but whatever. And I was even more encouraged when I heard the original creators were onboard to help with the creation of the series.
But then, what seemed like the day after we learned of their inclusion, the OG creators left the project for creative differences with Netflix. In a quote one of them said that it still “has the potential to be good” but that whatever it ended up being wouldn’t be what they “had intended or envisioned to make.”
Oh no! A death sentence, right? Well not necessarily…
Ya know who was NEVER involved with the live remake? The HEAD WRITER of the original series. Yeah, the writer. You know, the guy who makes the part of the show that is charming, coherent, memorable and lasting. This head writer, Aaron Ehasz, was responsible for all the best parts of the show, and his attention to detail was what made it, as so many people say, “a kid’s show, but not a kid’s show” at the end of the day.
The inclusion of Azula as female; Toph as a blind younger female instead of the creators’ more straightforward idea of the earth bender as a buff male teenager (we actually see this original character design in the opening sequence, “Water, Earth, Fire, Air. Long ago, the four nations live together in harmony…”); and the direction of Zuko and Uncle Iroh’s story arcs are just a few of his game changing contributions. This same guy was also NOT involved with Legend of Korra, which, while entertaining and even sometimes more gripping than ATLA, had aesthetic and plot choices that sometimes contradicted lore or lacked logic and generally doesn’t hold up as well to literary scrutiny and critique(NEEEEEERRRRRRD). But it WAS written by the original creators. Just sayin’.
So although he isn’t one of the creators, Ehasz is responsible for making the original show the behemoth that it is. He is also involved with Netflix’s animation success The Dragon Prince. And his style comes through. Said series is great, has several Last Airbender easter eggs and even has Sokka’s voice actor as one of its protagonists. It reinforces that Airbender was great because of what he did with it.
So to have the ATLA creators’ stamp of approval on a NEW Airbender series is only worth so much when you consider how mediocre the OLD Airbender would have been with only them at the helm. It took someone else heavily tweaking their vision to make it great. So what’s wrong with someone tweaking their vision a bit now? I’m just saying these two dudes don’t have all the answers. They aren’t a huge loss.
Long story long: I’m still cautiously optimistic ‘cause those two don’t deserve ALL the credit like they are often given. I also don’t really care THAT much in the first place since no one is getting their blood bent out through their eye holes in an ANIMATED direct sequel anyway!
Anyway, let’s enjoy the finale of the live-action remake! You’re welcome.