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Animation Monday: The Legend of Korra Book 2 Premiere Review


Geek Alabama Animation

The long wait is over!  Last Friday night, Book 2 of The Legend of Korra premiered on Nickelodeon.  Yes, I could not wait to see Book 2 of this great animated series.  Book 1 had spectacular animation and storytelling.  And I was expecting Book 2 to continue the tradition.  Yes, The Legend of Korra Book 2 delivered, even though some fans complained that the season premiere lacked a sense of wonder, awe, fun, and all that good stuff.

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Book 2 begins six months after the events of the Anti-bending Revolution, Korra, having learned to bend all four elements and achieved status as a Fully Realized Avatar, must once again become the student when she delves into the realm of spirits under her paternal uncle’s teachings and tutelage.  Now learning the depths of her spiritual connections, Korra soon discovers that light cannot exist without the dark, and in a never ending cycle of creation and destruction, only she has the ability to maintain balance in the world.

The first episode, Rebel Spirit, shows Korra playing with her Avatar powers, Mako is a police officer, Bolin is the captain of the Fire Ferrets which aren’t doing too well, and Asami tries to keep Future Industries afloat.  Before we saw that, we saw a spirit taking crew members off of a boat, freaky!  Tenzin is still worried that Korra is not ready to master the powers of being the Avatar.  So, Korra, Mako, Bolin, Asami, Tenzin, and the family decides to visit Korra’s and Tenzin’s family in the Southern Water Tribe.  But the trip is not all good news and bonding time.  By the way, Mako has some corny police jokes.

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The group meets the twins Eska and Desna plus Unalaq.  And the group goes to the Glacier Spirits Festival, and yes, Bolin stuffs an entire arctic hen in his mouth!  Asami and Bolin goes to a business meeting where Varrick, an eccentric and goofy businessman, shows off pretty ladies and moving pictures!  This is a business meeting I would love to attend!  At a dinner, Chief Unalaq warns about the festival becoming a joke and the spirits attacking the tribes.  But who cares about that, we get to see some dancing otter penguins!

At the carnival, Korra and Mako are loving each other while Bolin tries to hook up with the twins with no success.  Korra is frustrated and uses her Avatar powers to win a stuffed animal, while arguing with Mako.  Clearly, Korra is upset over something.  During the night, a spirit comes to attack Korra and her friends.  But the spirit overwhelms everyone until Chief Unalaq calms the spirit and it disappears.  Korra decides it’s time to have a new teacher and goes with Chief Unalaq. The argument between Korra and Tenzin was very harsh, I thought she could have handled that differently, but she’s a teenager.  Tenzin goes on the vacation with his family, and I am sure we will see Tenzin come back to save the day.  Somehow, I think Chief Unalaq has something bad up his sleeves.

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In the second episode called The Southern Lights, Chief Unalaq and Korra goes to The South Pole.  Korra is excited to go on such a dangerous trip!  Tenzin and the family arrives at an air temple and are greeted with flowers and the kids fighting over things, that is what a family trip is all about!  Bolin is going to travel in style on a snowmobile which will come in handy later.  After seeing some dark spirits and setting up camp, Tonraq drops a bombshell and says he was banished from The South Pole, that makes everyone super happy, not!

Tonraq’s back story was suspenseful and a bit of a surprise.  Tonraq was a general in the Northern Water Tribe and the army drove invaders out of the city and into an ancient forest which is the home of the spirits.  The big mistake was destroying the ancient forest to capture the barbarians.  This upset the spirits and they almost destroyed the city until Chief Unalaq guided the spirits back into the forest.  Tonraq was banished for destroying the forest and came to the Southern Water Tribe.  Korra was never told of this story and she storms out of camp angry, and she has a right to be angry for being lied too!

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The group continues going toward The South Pole when a spirit comes attacking again.  Korra tries to calm and guide the spirit, but Chief Unalaq comes in to save the day again!  While Bolin panics because he can’t stop the out of control snowmobile.  The group thinks about turning back until Korra forces his father Tonraq to leave, she is getting feisty!  Korra is upset over Mako talking to her father, then the group arrives.  The trees are frozen in ice and Korra has to find a way into the heart of the forest alone.  This becomes interesting as the spirits surround and trap Korra.  She tries to stop the spirits by using her powers and she is successful.  She finds the light in the dark and unleashes a massive amount of spirits.  She is almost defeated by the spirits but uses her Avatar powers and her hand to open the portal.  The spirits dancing in the sky are beautiful, and Korra and Mako hugs.

At the end of the episode, the group sees the northern troops getting ready to attack a city, and this is the moment where we find out that Chief Unalaq is up to something not too good.  I am looking forward to seeing what Book 2 holds for Korra and her friends.  Some people have commented saying Book 2 has lacked the writing and fun from Book 1.  But The Legend of Korra has not let down yet in my opinion.  During the two episodes, Korra was a bitter soul who’s constantly locking horns with everyone she meets, and she was in a constant sour mood throughout the episodes.  It’s the typical rebellious naive teenager behavior many teen girls go through.  Korra has to balance being the Avatar, having a boyfriend, and learning what it means to be an adult all at the same time which will be interesting to watch.

The animation was excellent and it was breathtaking like in Book One.  I look forward to seeing the rest of Book 2 of The Legend of Korra, you should be watching this show!

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The Legend of Korra airs new episodes on Friday night at 7/6 pm central.  To learn more, go to: http://www.nick.com/shows/legend-of-korra/

All images copyright from Nickelodeon.

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