Aang the anti-Avatar

I’d like to commend the makers of Avatar for showing that Americans can still turn out a quality animated tv series that has a story to tell and ends itself when that story is told. I felt, though, that they dropped the ball with the ending. (Spoilers ahead.)

There were two aspects that bothered me about the ending. The first is the ‘deus ex machina’ way the show resolved itself. I find it sad that the mystical turtle that appears outta nowhere is the only way they could come up with resolving the central conflict with Aang not actually killing the Fire Lord (Phoenix King really but I’ve always thought of him as the Fire Lord). They could have gotten us ready for the turtle by mentioning a couple tidbits early in the series. For instance, when they were at that ancient library maybe they could have come across a book that mentioned earlier types of bending or about the time before the avatars. Something. We knew about the Order of the White Lotus before so when they showed up at the end it wasn’t unexpected.

Also, there are ways that Aang could have subdued the Fire Lord. If Zuko and Katara could subdue Azula then Aang should have been able to subdue the Fire Lord. The first method that comes to mind is if Aang created a sphere around the Fire Lord that didn’t have any air in it. The Fire Lord would have fallen unconscious and could have been captured. Or open a huge hole in the earth under the Fire Lord. Or Aang could have broken the Fire Lords arms and legs so he couldn’t fire bend. As I’m typing this I just thought the creators could have used the fact that fire needs air to exist as another possible means to let Aang prevail. My sister mentioned having the Fire Lords Chi points blocked so he couldn’t firebend as another way.

The central dilemma of Avatar that of one who does not desire to kill but must kill was handled in one of my favorite animes of all time Kenshin. Kenshin had to kill Shishio or else all of Japan would be plunged into another war but due to circumstances in his past, he vowed not kill anymore. In this case, Shishio was given a believeable limitation that Kenshin could exploit if he was good enough. The guy that created Kenshin obviously thought out the ending before he got there so it would feel authentic.

The second aspect that bothered me, and which gave raise to the title, is how Aang turns his back on the collected wisdom of the past Avatars. He asks several of the past avatars for their wisdom and they all give him very good bits of wisdom: be decisive, only through justice is there peace, and the needs of the world and being the Avatar outweigh personal needs.

If he earnestly desired their wisdom he should have pondered what they said instead of immediately dismissing them. He was hoping one of the avatars would back him and he tried to keep going till he found one. He finally gave up when it became obvious that he wasn’t going to hear what he wanted to hear. He acted like a little kid and showed no maturity at all. Thinking about it, everyone else in his party have matured greatly throughout the course of the show with only Aang still acting the same as he did at the beginning. I’d’ve been fine if, after contemplating the past avatars wisdom, Aang made a mature decision that he wasn’t going to kill the Fire Lord and live with the consequences.

Another favorite character of mine, Vash, also lived by a code not to kill. At one point in the show we see what this conviction has done to Vash’s body – it’s scarred and battered because he has had to work much harder at not killing. He’s willing to go the extra mile to live by his code and I have nothing but the highest regard of him.

Then there is also the moral question of the type of bending that Aang uses to subdue the Fire Lord. Why has the type of bending become unknown and what happened to the people that practiced it? Aang professes that everyone is sacred but doesn’t seem to have any qualms with monkeying around with a fundamental part of someone else. What Aang does could definitely be considered cruel and unusual punishment.

What’s done is done I guess but if this world is revisited in a future series, I would like to see to consequences of Aang’s decision shown. A sizable portion of the military would rebel against Zuko and free the Fire Lord and Azula from prison and retake the capital. The war-hawks of the Fire Nation will not simply lay down their weapons and go home because there has to be balance in the world.

And because I don’t want to be totally negative I want to mention that the recap episode done right before the last set of episodes. It is easily the best recap episode I have ever seen; it was so genuinely brilliant that I wish anime makers take the time to watch this episode and realize what they can do with a recap episode.

Needed a pic of my favorite character from Avatar
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78 thoughts on “Aang the anti-Avatar”

  1. I agree 100% about the deus ex machina of the ending. When I saw the lion turtle, I tried to remember, “Was this animal mentioned before in the series?” The White Lotus group was awesome because there was so much foreshadowing. I passed off the White Lotus as a Pai Shō group, and to be honest, I forgot all about it by the end of the series. (Were I watching one episode a day, I’d probably have better remembered.) At the point where Aang recalls the lion turtle’s wisdom, my first thought was, “Oh no, they are not going to deus ex machina this ending!”

    I’m sure no one will argue against the idea of blocking the Phoenix King’s fire bending as a good way to stop him, but between the deus ex machina and the whole scene where Aang is almost enveloped by the Phoenix King, only to just barely break free, and completely wrap the Phoenix King, I find the ending to be forced for a series that had everything else going for it.

    The Order of the White Lotus, the Earth King’s planned escape, the placement of characters, the actions of Mai and Ty Lee at the volcano, the extremely believable mental fallout of Azula, the choice of character to defeat Azula, the writer for the play going on about his sources, right down to “a very knowledgeable cabbage seller”, everything else was 100% right.

    Here’s hoping for another “American anime” series, one able to match Avatar, and in the end able to surpass it.

  2. I agree: the entire ending showed that Aang really didn’t change much throughout the series at all. He didn’t develop as a character, remaining the same throughout the entire thing. Except perhaps growing a little taller.

    The thing with the turtle utterly confused me, as it came completely out of nowhere. “Poof! You can spirit-bend now!” It seemed highly unrealistic, even for a fantasy series, because it was like the reigning God in the series hadn’t been paying attention, then noticed “Oh, shit, I forgot!” and had to send something fast at the very last second.

    I suppose, in other words, deus ex machina.

    I also disagreed with the pairings at the end – mainly because of Zuko and Aang’s lack of development. Zuko and Mai? When Mai represented Zuko’s longing to make his father happy as a well-behaved, bloodthirsty Fire Prince? Aang and Katara? When Katara acts more like Aang’s mother than girlfriend?

    Ah, well. What’s done is done. Hopefully, the next time Mike and Bryan make a series, it won’t have an ending that’s so weak in its characterization.

  3. The romances and the ending were the biggest failures of the series.
    They sadistically threw out the possibility and many indications of
    an intriguing Zuko-Katara twist only to suddenly turn and have Katara
    end up with Aang. I adore Aang but he was not a very complex, dynamic,
    or intriguing character unlike Zuko who became my favorite at the end.
    Even before I became aware of the Zutara fandom, I disliked the Aang-Katara pairing. I’m a traditionalist, I don’t like the older woman dynamic. In this case, it seemed very odd and inappropriate considering
    Aang is just a kid in his heart and Katara was very much blossoming into an adult. It was one-sided until the very end. She treated him in such a motherly and sisterly way..and it seemed kind of perverted for him to keep lusting after her. She also served as a teacher, guide, and role model. I know Avatar lives in its own universe, but a 12yr old boy with a 14 or 15 girl is just wrong and gross. The writers set it up to be heartbreaking and unsatisfying either way. They went with that ending because it was the least messy and they didn’t have enough time or material to develop alternative romances. The Kataangers who campaigned for this really are ignorant, immature, and just irrationally idealistic because they were caught up in the canon and Aang’s perspective. If the show continued, could you really imagine Aang and Katara functioning as a romantic couple? It would just be odd. I was outraged and deeply disappointed with the end. Aang is a stagnant character and he doesn’t have to make any sacrifices. You definitely wanted Ozai to die.Katara’s personality is well-suited for an older man. Zuko and Katara are teenagers but they could have easily have been in their 20′s because in that world a teenager gets emerged into the world of adults. Aang and Katara lacked that sizzle or chemistry. Their dynamic was so close and endearing. They do have a special connection but that doesn’t
    always have to translate into romance. The two protagonists hooking up is a such a cliche. Zuko and Katara, had that sort of tension you could forsee turning into a passionate romance and deep, mature relationship. I had an inkling about them as a couple even way before the Ember Players episode and before I became aware of the fanatical shipping. They would have balanced each other out and brought out the best for each other. Zuko, especially needed Katara in his life. Katara
    and Aang are too similar in temperment and too close in a way that would could create no magic and mediocre sparks. It is almost she chose him out of duty, obligation, and because she felt like he was her only option. I was always grossed out seeing them kiss or Aang leering at her. I always loathe the Kataangers arguments because they are just wrong. Even if Aang was older and taller, I don’t think I would want him with Katara. That pairing just seem off from the very beginning. You don’t have an older sister type- coddling best friend figure turn into the love interest. Mai would draw Zuko backwards and it is hard to accept Mai just reforming when it was a long process for Zuko. I even thought Katara would have been better off with Jet or Haru. The writers even copped out and showed an Avatar getting married
    to continue his romance story with Katara even after they showed an earlier episode saying Aang would have to sacrifice Katara to enter the Avatar state. It would be different if Katara was into Aang but she was very repulsed at his kisses but then we are expected to believe she suddenly falls for him at the end. Zuko and Katara, being
    the royal couple at the end to unite the kingdoms after years of war would have been more plausible. They didn’t even show Sokka or anybody else receive special honors or roles at the end for the future. They could have easily built up an angle with Aang and Toph or made up some other character for him. Sokka and Suki were the only decent couple.
    They left Toph alone.

  4. Thanks for the comment Jasmine. That’s a good point about a Zuko and Katara marriage – it would also serve a political reason and is a very plausible outcome since marriages to cement friendship between countries and alliances have historically been very common.

    And I think Freud would have a field day with Aang and his feeling for Katara.

  5. Not to be rude . I just stopped by here cause’ im looking around the web bout avatar . No offence , buh wtf ? It’s just a show .. Doesn’t need to be right or perfect . Especially the age difference . Usually i dont care much bout’ Aang && Katara having a 2 year apart age difference . Its JUST 2 years . If it was probably 3 4 or 5 years or somewhere around there , that’s a big difference . ‘ Avatar the last airbender ‘ was DIFFERENT , ill agree with that . buh things don’t always have to turn out how the viewers THINK may happen . There has to be a twist . Doesn’t matter if its weird or not . What im wondering is that whuy is there some zuturans ? i dont really mind bout them , buh im just wondering . Is it just cause Zuko’s taller than her ? older ? mature ? Is this all bout APPEARANCE ? Aang && Katara are fine with each other . That’s how Mike/Bryan or whoever made it . There are unsolved questions in the show , buh OH WELL . Doesn’t mean thaat people should talk crap bout it . && YES , im a Kataang too . Is it a problem ? i read somewhere in here that Kataangs are immature && ignorant , huh ? Saying im immature ?! No offence , buh for some people that thinks zutara is better than kataangs , buh they just HATE the fact that Katara’s wit Aang now , ask yourselves this question . ‘ Did i see any REAL tension between Katara && Zuko ? Was there any love thing happinin’ betweeen them in the episodes ? ‘ . Im good with some other people who are zuturans , or whatever , as long as they dont make a BIG deal outta aang , katara , or saying the whole show was hella LAME . I’ve read this whole page here , && some of them dint bother me . Seems like these writers are just expressing what they think bout ‘avatar’ && at the same time , not going overboard bout it . Some comments bothered me just a bit . saying the WHOLE show was wrong , saying kataangs were wrong , immature && all thaat . Im just saying , i dont like it when people judge shows like this in a very negative way . like if its going overboard . I think its just rude . Some comments were ohkaay with me because although im a Kataang , some of the writings are true . SOME . Buh its just a show , its not real anyways , so people , don’t judge on other shows like this harshly . if you have somethin’ to say , ‘ keep your bad comments to yourself ‘ . .. *SIGH* i feel better now . Aiight , later .

  6. There was plenty of tension between Zuko and Katara for there to have been a serious relationship between them. If you ask me, Mai is just a gold-digger with a very bad, Goth outlook on life. Zuko needs someone who is more grounded with a positive outlook on life. Frankly, that is Katara. Plus, the age difference is in the better direction between Zuko and Katara.

    Women mature emotionally much faster than men. This means that, at 14, Katara is emotionally closer to age 17 than 14. So, Katara’s emotional age more closely matches Zuko’s real age. Then we get to Aang’s age. Technically, he’s 112. Even though he’s only had 12 years of life experience (and he’s totally not ready to be the Avatar, that’s why the monks would have waited until he was 16 before telling him!!! Except for the imminent invasion by the Fire Nation, of course.), he’s still almost 100 years older than Katara. That just makes any liaison with Aang wrong, by societal taboo.

    The only reason Katara really accepts the idea of a relationship with Aang is that her brother reminded her that Aang is a “really powerful bender.” Does anyone doubt the veracity of the fortune teller’s prediction for Katara’s future husband? Zuko is a powerful bender, and would have made an ideal choice, as mentioned before, for a political marriage.

    Ok, back to Zuko and Mai again… Zuko marries Katara to cement the promise of the Fire Nation to cease all hostilities and make amends with the world. He then keeps Mai as his concubine, since he is really in love with her. I don’t know why he’s in love with her, because there’s really just not much to her.

    No matter who Aang ends/ended up with, I am just glad it wasn’t the little twit looking for a “big-eared fellow.” Although, she seemed very sincere, very helpful, and somewhat nice, albeit quite desperate.

    My favorite pairing, of course, is Sokka and Suki. They’re just great together! And it just points out the shortcomings of the other pairings.

  7. zuko will be katara`s future husbend but aang and katara can`t not get married ..sorry but there not girlfriend and boyfriend there just friends i wanted is zuko and katara to go looking for ursa in spin off series now zuko and katara they belong together now but mai is just a bitch girl sloth and she`s still a lier she wasn`t try to save zuko`s life she`s still played by the hero she is not one of the avatar team she`s still part of azula`s and satan`s team i wish zuko could just banished her right now she slips him with the cactus juice zuko didn`t know he choose the wrong girl he could choose katara katara is not aangs girl she`s aang`s best friend . but kataang did not won yet it`s not over . zutara will win maiko and kataang will be the losers

  8. There was nothing wrong with Jasmine’s post. I think the Kataangers have been incredibly fanatical, rude, outrageous, inaccurate, and they turned the shipping war into an ugly one. It is great to see a Zutarian
    get into an intelligent and in-depth explanation of that pairing and the fundamental reasons why Kataang turned people off. It is disgusting how people are operating on the false perspective that Zutara is based on appearances and superficiality when it was thinking outside the box and not following an imposed pairing that just felt
    unnatural which is why we chose to follow an alternative route that felt more right to us. It is the people who just blindly went along with a couple whose dynamic felt unsatisfying and incompatible because that is what the show concretely offered that seem closeminded to me.

    Most Zutarians accepted that Kataang would happened and understand their side while most Kataangers seem completely oblivious and ignorant of the deeper concepts of Zutara, it is definitely more about personality, chemistry than appearances. Then when Kataangers try to attack Zutarians, which they have rabidly done without restraint, they
    provide an innacurate basis for why Zutara exists. I know a lot of people felt the same way me or Jasmine did about the show. Zutarians didn’t start out as attacking the concept of Kataang, but then the Kataangers got nasty forcing Zutarians to get defensive which intensified the perspective.

    Zutarian’s arguments are more intangible, the dynamic with Zuko and Katara had a lot of potential that was not explored. The Kataang was about what the writers wanted you to believe about them, and it just didn’t jibe. I never bought that Katara was in love with Aang and she just chose her younger best friend that was like a little brother to her out of a sense of duty and misplaced affection. Jasmine made the strong point, that if the show had continued, that imagining them being romantic together would be difficult. His whole fixation on her seem improper. Aang would bring out Katara’s flaws out more, the dominant, bossy, controlling, and coddling side. Mai would bring Zuko backwards.

    P.S. You can still love a show and find legimitate criticisms about it.

  9. You are being hypocritical Unknown. People are allowed to express judgement and the Kataangers never refrained from ambushing Zutara.
    There have been a lot of great posts on the internet illustrating why
    Kataang wasn’t the right pairing. It was the biggest faux pas of the series and it kind of turned me off. With Zutara, it is about what could have been not just occurrences in the series. It is more complex and conceptual rather than just buy what the writers kept force feeding us with. Another post explained why the finale lacked the severity and maturity that the show had been developing over the seasons. They set it up whether either pairing wasn’t satisfying. If Zutara were to happen, there would have been more episodes to develop that but the tension was there. I know a lot of Zutarians who rooted for Katara to end up with Zuko or somebody other than Aang even before they became aware of the shipping or the Zutara fandom. I started watching Avatar later on and was shocked to find out that Aang pined for Katara so badly and that was the direction the show was going. Everything about it felt wrong. Of course, I have watched all the episodes from the beginning. What should have been a silly little crush progressed much farther than it should have and the ending seemed tacked on. I adored Aang but Zuko was what really drew me into the show. Aang just got what he wanted at the end, and Katara was treated like a cheap reward. The only hint of Katara ever feeling romantically was the dancing episode where she seemed jealous but you could easily explain that away as a best friend used to being the center of attention and adoration feeling envious that Aang was giving attention to somebody else. Even that expression of jealously seem sudden and contrived because Katara never gave a real indication of liking Aang that way. Katara’s personality was better suited for an older man. Aang would send Katara in a state of arrested development while Zuko and Katara could have lead to such inner growth. The writer’s attempt to defuse Zutara just made it seem that there was a sexual tension and an immature denial of an attraction. It made me nauseous to see Katara kiss Aang at the end and it still looked awkward. If only if they had provided Aang with another option besides Katara, it would have been perfect. Even though I felt Katara would be better with Zuko, I kind of hoped they wouldn’t end up together because that angle wasn’t developed enough. People would turn against Zuko and Aang would be viewed as a tragic romantic hero. I rather have the wrong couples instead of the right couples not being played out on screen in the right way. The constant references to Aang crushing on Katara were the only things that really annoyed me about the show.
    At least Zuko and Mai were believable as a couple and they had some chemistry. It just seemed if that continued, however, Mai might turn into a treacherous Queen because she never went into a process of reforming and enlightenment like Zuko did.

  10. Katara just seem misguided at the end. She felt like she had to choose Aang because he declared his blind love for her and the show didn’t give enough room for her to even consider other options. It was frustrating because I did feel the she had such an intense bond with Aang but it didn’t feel right in a romantic light. They removed Jet and Haru from the picture. They clearly showed what her type of guy was. Even Aang, when they showed other girls being drawn to him in other episodes, they were younger, and Aang seem to enjoy that attention. I am referring to one of the older episodes. It is about what you are naturally attracted to and her ending up with Aang seem manipulated and motivated from misdirected feelings. She seem repulsed when Aang first kissed her and if she loved Aang all along like the Avatar extras claimed, she would not have reacted that way. She didn’t seem confused, I think she didn’t even think about Aang in that way until he kissed her. Then she felt later obligated because she could never hurt Aang and not loving him back would have hurt him deeply.
    They were best friends. Overcoming maternal and sisterly feelings is a sick obstacle to overcome. It was like Anakin-Padme. Aang saved the world and she felt she had to choose him because that is what he wanted. It was all about Aang. What Katara needed and deserved should have played a role. It was like she would never even think about Aang as a mate until he confused her because of that co-dependent dynamic between them. It just seemed unhealthy and inappropriate. I could never envision them as a couple. It was more than just the age but that was a huge factor. I can’t even image Aang being at Katara’s level emotionally.

    I didn’t like the whole triangle concept. If only they made Aang see in Toph in a different light or created another love interest for Aang. Even before the show, back when it was just a comic, Zutara existed. The creators always were torn with that idea. The creators even later admitted that they Zuko was originally supposed to the the love interest. Heck, I know some people who tuned into the show later and were shocked that Aang and Katara was the romantic set-up because
    they actually thought Aang was her little brother. People who didn’t know the dynamic from the beginning thought Katara and Sokka were the couple. I know I was disappointed when I discovered they were siblings.
    Any alternative to Aang seem appealing to me. I know I wasn’t the only one who developed a passionate interest.

  11. What is weird was that Zutara was perfectly explained, yet that Kataanger just contradicted what was already explained. Zutara was born from a genuine liking of wanting two people to end up together.
    It would have greatly served the theme of redemption, forgiveness, and good triumphing over evil. Two people from different backgrounds who progress from nemesises to friends to lovers would have a made such
    an entralling angle. Zutara symbolizes something deeper than just a ship. Zuko and Katara would have complemented a great yin-yang. True love needs to overcome adversity, obstacle, and divisions. Their similarities and differences balanced each other out. Zuko was the most complex character and Katara would have challenged him and fufilled his enlightenment. I hate it when Kataangers twist the arguments, they even tried to twist the age thing where they tried to act like Zuko was too old for Katara. A guy her own age would have been
    too young for Katara and an even younger guy was more implausible.
    The Kataangers can’t see past what is displayed on-screen, so Zutara doesn’t make sense because there weren’t enough direct, clear sappy moments between Zuko and Katara. The others above described it perfectly, it was about the potential and intrigue to Zutara. It would have the made the story and characters grow in such remarkable ways but
    it was too heavy for a kids show where they insisted on the central character getting his way at the end even if it was not best for Katara. I also think the creators have some sort of mommy complex or freudian issues. Throughout the series, I just wanted Mai and Aang out of the way. Zuko even had an opening when he broke up with Mai and Katara never really belonged to Aang. The Kataangers kept acting like Zuko with Katara would be some sort of betrayal. I got excited when Zuko joined the gang and there was that love-hate tension. The whole
    I don’t trust you but I’m drawn to you sort of vibe from Katara and
    Zuko seemed compelled to Katara in some inexplicable way. He was soft with Katara, he didn’t even lash out at her antagonism. He took a lightening bolt for her. They looked beautiful fighting off Azula together, fire and water. Their underlying interaction was far more
    exciting than her long interaction from Aang in the beginning. And yes, they also looked hot and ideal together. Even conversationally,
    Katara seemed too old for Aang, even with their voices. Their interaction never fit neatly into a romantic scenario, it seemed absurd to have her end up with Aang at the end. Katara was just in a different league altogether in terms of emotional states, maturity, substance, and personality than Aang. He really was like a son to her. Aang and Katara just clashed in my mind because their similarities and differences create an great imbalance. They were too alike in some ways and their differences would be hard to overcome. There would be no growth between them. The fact that Katara’s choosing of Aang was abrupt and forced was a huge shortcoming. She had all of that time with Aang and the creators couldn’t set up a romance between them. They waited until the end to make it seem romantic when it just looked pathetic to me because they knew during the course of the show that they wouldn’t fit neatly into the story as lovers despite what they tried to project. I usually suscribe to the canon but the attitude of the creators are not always on target. This was the best case of that.
    The main fact was that people couldn’t stand to see Aang heartbroken and alone. I just felt that the romances sold the characters short big time. He shouldn’t have even had such intense emotions for Katara in the first place. On first sight, with the first girl he sees in 100 years..boom he just decides that this is the girl he wants. I know Kataangers liked the theme of a friendship growing into something more,
    best friends falling in love can be touching but it didn’t seem right to me with these characters. Aang was too young to be putting so much focus on romance with anybody, let alone Katara who was a sister figure to him. Aang, Katara, and Sokka were a family and it seemed almost incestous for Aang and Katara to hook up. Katara’s frequent kisses and hugs were ones of comfort and nuturing, not attraction. With Aang, it just seemed like a stubborn, even selfish infatuation.
    I bet if Aang hadn’t imposed his lovelorn status on her, she never would have considered Aaang. Zutara was an epic, unrequited romance ( for the viewers) that will live forever in the hearts of many.

  12. The ending was poorly written and felt rushed. The way they had Aang deal with the firelord felt like such a cop out. There was no closure to a lot of plot elements about the killing of Ozai, how order would be restored to the kingdoms, the story of Zuko’s mother, what happened to the other warriors, what roles the characters would have in the next, radical chapters of their lives, and how the kingdoms would unite together. Zuko and Katara ending up together would have been ideal. It also would have hot and thrilling. Water and fire create steam. It kind of symbolized life to me, where the wrong people end up together. People lack good judgement when it comes to romance, and the
    creators exemplified that. I wanted to slap some sense into Katara and Zuko. I shouted when Katara kissed Aang because it just seemed like she turned into a different character with different feelings than what she showed through the series. Aang and Katara didn’t feel like true love to me. It was like it was for the sake of two people ending up together even though they weren’t right for each other. Despite their bond, they couldn’t forge that kind of chemistry. Aang and Katara, it would also be boring with no fire or oomph. I kept visualizing the future and it seem Katara would grow dissatifised with Aang. Mai and Zuko would have a dysfunctional relationship. I also found Aang and Zuko relationships with men more fascinating. Zuko with Iroh, his blooming bromance with Sokka, and his friendship with Aang. Aang was almost kind of feminine. Seeing Aang and Katara kiss felt like a crime. I felt robbed by the finale.

  13. Love these posts. I gave up on responding to vicious Kataanger’s rants, raves, and mudslinging a year ago but I couldn’t help but feel
    delight at coming across this page because I browsed through a bunch of Kataanger’s posts. It made my blood boil. Nice to see Zutarians not afraid to call them out. Kataangers are truly the kind of people, an ignorant majority, who are incapable of understanding or even tolerating something as exceptional as Zutara. I have also come across other great Zutarian posts but they are spread out and disorganized. If only they could be collected on one site, instead each post would be on a site where it would be ambushed by Kataangers. Some Kataangers even pretend to be Zutarians who mock the fact that we didn’t like the finale or pairings. What really pushed Zutara into a frenzy is what kind of people made up the Kataang fandom. Those posts just increased my dislike of Kataang and the morons who actively engaged in propraganda for it. What really appalled me is how they treated us like we were insane, stupid, or delusional. The key thing about Zutara that needs to be understand, is that it was rooted in theory and potential, and a perspective that was unexplored, and not based on forced moments on-screen. I like how people pointed out that Zutara existed even before the show, Zuko was always the other option. I’m not going into detail about my thoughts on Zutara because it will just be redundant in relation to what others said. It threw out tons of character development for Aang, Zuko, and Katara for have them to end up with the wrong people. They were plenty of subtle hints and indications for a Zutara ending but I think there just wasn’t enough time and a major case of laziness to deviate from the wrong choice they made at the start. I also couldn’t help but notice that Zutarians tended to be older and the concept was too complex for children to grasp. It was annoying getting into these invalid arguments with a bunch of children or people who have bad taste when it comes to romance and character judgement. Kataang also felt dirty. My heart and mind just naturally rebelled against that pairing. I actually tried to root for them but my heart just couldn’t do it because everything about it felt wrong. Kataangers kept making points that were so invalid, outrageous, untrue, and contradictory it just turned me into a overzealous Zutarian who lost patience with the other side. My favorite moment of the series is when Katara hugged Zuko. She does swoon when she says I forgive you unlike what the Kataangers claim when they say Katara showed no expression of affection or attraction for Zuko. Zutara really did have a life of its own because despite the attempt for the writers to block it out and treat it is an implausibility it still seem more profound and right than her ending up with Aang despite its heavy buildup. Zuko and Katara still had chemistry despite the writing and chosen plot points. It is about personality and it developed from the possibility of what could happen. The number one reason for Katara to choose Aang is that his psyche couldn’t handle the rejection and it would have interfered with his Avatar mission. It reeked of pity and she wasn’t even given enough time to look at Zuko in more than a friendly light. It was implausible to me for the writers to act like Zuko and Katara, if they were real people, wouldn’t even had those thoughts of attraction run across their mind. Throughout the series, I was constantly reminded by how Aang was too young, too immature, and just wrong for Katara. Mai could lead to Zuko’s self-destruction. It was odd how Zuko helped resolve Katara’s angst over her mother’s death. It was interesting how it was Katara, not Mai, who helped him face Azula, who was there in his time of greatest despair and threat. He couldn’t stop thinking about her and had to bury the hatchet with Katara..looking for her in the night.
    The Kataangers just flat-out denied the sexual tension but it really wasn’t about anything about what we saw but about what the story arc could have been. So many opportunities but they were cut off.
    I could go on and on. It was interesting how each moment between Zuko and Katara seemed poignant and imperative to their journey but her moments with Aang felt like nothing special because we became accustomed to them saving or comforting each other.

  14. The fortuneteller said that love was not in Aang’s future. In a sense, she was correct because he didn’t get true love with Katara. Instead he got respect, intense friendship, and somebody to resolve his familial issues but not the right kind of romantic love. She also said that Aang can change the future but he really didn’t do anything to earn Katara’s love. He forced himself on her. The whole saving the world by defeating the fire nation and learning the other elements almost seem separate from his infatuation with Katara. It lead to a strong friendship and family level of emotion. She was his teacher and he was her student. She was his mentor. I know Toph was also his instructor but there wasn’t that hero worship and they were more on each other’s level. Katara would do anything to avoid seeing Aang get hurt. I’m not explaining this point well but everytime Aang would throw a tantrum, cry, or whatever she would react like an overprotective babysitter or sister. That relationship would be unhealthy in a romantic situation. I really think Katara missed out her soulmate, Zuko. They both missed out. It was like the creators put blinders on them and unfortunately the circumstances diverted their attention to more important matters.

  15. hi there zuko will find his mother ursa and katara and zuko will get together mai hasnt won yet mai is mean she`s sick she hiss she`s ugly as azula she is a demon she hase freddy`s claw hand she was trying to kill me and zuko will break up with mai again i want mai to betrayed aang and zuko and killed katara too that just might work i like it what a ginuise

  16. mai will not be zuko`s future wife in avatar book 4 katara is going to be zuko`s future wife not mai and not aang i want katara to kiss zuko on the lips . katara and zuko are not friends they are lovers not haters i want zuko to fall in love with the another new girlfriend katara mai will get her revenge on her and betrayed the ba sing se and start killed aang and relese azula once more i don`t even like mai i want mai to be banished out of the firenation forever got that

  17. I agree with most of the above posts. Why would they make such a point of mentioning Zuko’s mother yet not give the audience closure with that plot point. They also don’t explain what happens to the world, the different nations, and the characters in the future. Aang avoids
    killing the fire lord or even taking any drastic action which doesn’t
    make me think all of his training to master all of the elements amounted to anything other than personal wisdom and gaining extraordinary talent. I also hated the romantic couplings at the end.
    I can’t explain anything better than what others explained and I also became very angry with Kataang and the writers. The writers not choosing the smart and mature option of pairing Zuko with Katara, I understand and accepted when the series first started. But to toy with half of its fanbase and have it end on such a grotesque note with Katara smooching a 12 year old kid who she had such a motherly, sisterly, and platonic connection to was just flat-out absurd. Then for Zuko, despite his transformation from tortured villian to reformed hero, going back to a character like Mai, it was the anti-thesis and reversal to what he strived to become. I heard Mike was strongly Kataang but that Bryan preferred Zutara but went along with Kataang because it was too complicated, mature, and dark to write into a children’s show. Then Zuko and Katara ending up together would complicate the plot from a socio-political standpoint as well. I was of the many who rooted for Zuko and Katara to get together before finding out about the Zutara shipping and fanfictions. There is no way
    the writers could have lived up to Zutarian’s expectations, so maybe its better that they took the easy way out with Kataang. I also hope the movie coming out has Kataang instead of Zutara because I don’t want them to ruin the image of Zutara become the movie is horribly miscast and I know it is going to be lame. The debates with Kataang were never about what was shown on the show or about making Zutara go from fanon to canon. They continue to miss the point that Zutara, if the writers had chosen that, would have made a better couple. That if they had chosen that, it would have flown satisfactorily. How many people would have paired Aang with Katara, if the writers hadn’t planted that in their heads from the get-go? Not too many people unless
    they have Oedipus issues. We knew it probably wouldn’t be canon so the stupid debates about certain moments in certain episodes were futile. It wasn’t about that. It was about the moments that could have been and should have been if Zutara was chosen. I also concur, that the writers tried to sabotage Zutara but Zuko and Katara still gave the aura that they could be more than allies. I don’t want to be too redundant but Katara would bring out Aang’s immature, whiny, and needy side more with her controlling side becoming worse. He wasn’t mature enough for her, period. Wisdom and maturity are not the same thing.
    A 12 yr old boy shouldn’t be dating a 14 year old girl, period. I don’t
    like the older woman situation in any circumstance unless the circumstances are extraordinary and there is some sort of special chemistry that defies the natural age boundary. Aang and Katara just didn’t have that, no matter how hard the writers tried to make it seem like they did. It was also painful and made me ache for the writers to miss out on the golden opportunity to pair off Toph with Aang. Toph should have ended up with Aang. The potential for Aang-Toph and Zuko-Katara was there despite the limited set-up, they could have still carried it off if they added a few more plot points. It was also ironic how the writers instead of using the last few episodes to really sell Zuko and Mai or Aang and Katara, they had Zuko interact with Katara. I know the show ended over a year ago and it is less frustrating watching it the second time around. Zutarians shouldn’t
    have to deal with constant bashing from Kataang. They won’t let any Zutarian have any safe haven and engage in a multitude of devious tactic to conquer our minds and opinions.

  18. I had no problem with Aang having a crush on her. I can understand his immature infatuation with her that became too extreme as the series went on and I couldn’t tolerate it by the time he kissed her. But for somebody with a personality like Katara, it was hard to fathom why she would choose Aang in the end. She wouldn’t naturally be attracted to somebody like him. It would have caused major growth on her part to rise above her prejudice and past to embrace Zuko. It was implausible to me that Zuko and Katara wouldn’t be attracted to each other. Their attraction was an underlying and internalized one that would have taken them a journey to realize. Sokka and Suki, it wasn’t a love at first sight deal. Their underlying attraction came to the surface.
    Even with Aang and Toph, if they hadn’t made the wrong choice in having him continue to lust after Katara, it would have perfectly plausible for his friendship and alliance with her to grow into something more. That is always more compelling and realistic than just
    lusting after somebody that is out of your league right off the bat.
    The angst that eventually turns into friendship than romance is usually better to me than the drippy, saccherine romances where people just become smitten. Aang put Katara on a pedestal and I just felt it wouldn’t be a healthy relationship between them. The interaction in which they were co-warriors, friends, and etc felt more natural unlike the brief romantic interaction.

  19. Zuko and Katara actually had a lot in common, they weren’t the polar opposites that they appeared to be in the beginning of the series.
    Some people think of Zuko and Aang as parallels, I disagree. Zuko and Katara both have to struggle to have the right direction. There is the inner fight within them. Zuko makes an important statement to Aang, early in the season, where he says that he is like Azula, where they were just lucky, while he had to earn and fight which made him stronger. It wasn’t his exact words but it was something to that effect. Aang’s polar opposite and parallel was Azula. She was inherently evil and blessed in superior skill in the way Aang was inherently good and blessed in superior skill. Zuko and Katara are more realistic, complex, and human characters. Their skill and strength was a journey. Her hug with Zuko was far more romantic in resonance than any of her many hugs and little pecks with Aang

  20. What I really hate is how the Kataangers say they pity or worry about the Zutarians. I pity them because they are too shallow and closeminded to appreciate or respect the POTENTIAL of Zutara. It was always about the potential.

  21. i know zuko and katara will be attricted togehter i does make sence you see i dont like how mai just lied to zuko i just wish zuko could go out with katara and find his mother and she will stay with him but aang will be with toph . and i want zuko to break up with mai and i want katara to break up with aang . aang is too young for older and the younger girls now can aang just go and find the other airbenders now. then ursa was still alive that means katara will love to see her how beautiful she is now . katara is alote more prettier then his mother lady ursa

  22. I thought Aang had better chemistry with Zuko than he did with Katara.
    What was fascinating about Zuko, is that he had an interesting chemistry and dynamic with almost every character..Iroh, Aang, General Zhao, his father, Azula, Mai, Jet, Aang, Toph, Sokka, and especially the one that was screwed around with…Katara. I heard the writers were divided between Kataang and Zutara. Mike and Bryan made the official wrong choice of Kataang at the beginning of the animation series but there was a debate of how much Zutara too add into the show.
    They didn’t add much but it was enough to make Zutara plausible from a canon as well as a fanon perspective. Their hypothetical pairing with my own version of how it would go down along with many other Zutarians
    versions was satisfying enough for me. Then the creators had to torture
    us by having plenty of Zutara squeal moments in the last few episodes only for it to turn Kataang and Maiko at the end. The Kataang and Maiko ending was cheap. They played to other ships as well…having Suki almost die as a cliffhanger to give the Tokkas some hope. They should have included a moment where Sokka uses sword-fighting skills instead of having him lose his sword. I wished they used more of the other characters. The ending was just blah and it did feel rushed-through considering how well-developed the other episodes were in comparison. I also didn’t like how they did not give the other real hero Zuko more glorious and brave moments. It was Katara who ending up taking more hits at Azula and I wanted Zuko the one to whip her butt.
    The moment where Zuko rushes in front of Katara and takes the bolt of lightening right in his heart was so romantic…they should have kissed after that. I would completely believed in that kiss. Katara was the only character on the show who could have healed Zuko’s heart and soul both figuratively and literally. Also, did Bryke really expect us to believe that taking away The Phoenix King’s firebending powers would restore balance to the world? Azula had a breakdown but we still don’t believe they were truly defeated. Azula, her father, and other fire nation members including Mai could team up again and cause trouble.

    Aang and Katara played off each other much better as friends. Most of the other alternative pairings appealed to me. The main couple of Aang and Katara was blech…mad awkward. Katara didn’t truly love Aang in a romantic way. Aang wasn’t in love with Katara either, it was a crush that got interwined with a very strong friendship, family-unit, similar philosophies, and the dedication to restore balance to the world by their bending powers and travels which might appear like love in the surface. Bryke doesn’t understand romance, it was almost like they were living out their own fantasy of the kid hooking up with an older chick out of his league. I also can’t believe how they got away with that totally Oedipus pairing on a children’s show.

  23. What is phenomenal is how Zuko and Katara still had that delicious tension and multi-layered chemistry whether Bryke wanted it or not.
    Kataangers were downright nasty and overwhelming in their petty inflammatory agenda against Zutarians. There were many webpages devoted to trashing Zutara and their arguments were completely contradictory bull. I wanted Zuko and Katara to get together way before I knew Zutara existed. I was delighted and suprised when I find out that tons of others shared my sentiment. The fact that many Kataangers felt there was no basis for Zutara just displays they lack the ability for abstract, multi-faceted, complex, and introspective thinking because they couldn’t see outside the confines of the show. I also noticed many Kataangers bashed Zuko horribly and made illegitimate comparisons to other pairings on other shows because they could never stop thinking of Zuko as the villian. Many Kataangers don’t respect or understand Zuko at all and that also shows they didn’t understand the major themes of the show and an important story arc. Most of Zutara was fantasy, fanon but there was minor canon evidence as well. I also think the creators were completely aware of Katara’s motherly-sisterly dynamic with Aang and the Kataang supporters are very blind and biased to deny it. Kataang didn’t feel like true love to me and there were no sparks. It was forced, awkward, and painful to watch right ’til the end.

  24. “It was interesting how each moment between Zuko and Katara seemed poignant and imperative to their journey but her moments with Aang felt like nothing special because we became accustomed to them saving or comforting each other.”

    Um wow…okay no offense but just because you got used to two people relying on each other, it makes their bond any less meaningful? What are you saying?

  25. The lion-turtle was mentioned in episode “The Library”, so the lion-turtle concept was thought out.

    The reason they didn’t put in one of the thing you mentioned for a solution to ending the war is the same reason people make Marie-Sue’s, because fans like it. No matter what, the cheesiest of things are always the most popular, that’s just the way it is. I was haveing about this same conversation with a friend of mine, we were talking about if Toph went back to her parents they would be furious about her fighting in the war but in reality they would make it so that her parents would be really happy and except her because that’s the way the majority of fans would want it.

  26. i know mai was behind all this and she is going to relese azula in prison cell and she is going to betrayed aang and katara and zuko too i want zuko to edmit when he will make mistake when he dated the wrong girl i want zuko to love katara and that is it i know it i just know it she`s evil mai wasnt a hero she`s a witch and she planed it all alone she is one of azula`s gang i know she was not a traitor she`s a traitor of aang she is not one of goodguys she`s one of the badguys can zuko just forget it about that stupid mai now and that is final

  27. Summarizing the essence of Zutara would be redundant. Kataang will trash it no matter how well it is explained. Why can’t they leave one site with Zutarian discussions alone? It is also stupid how you take a quote out of its context and out of the context of the entire show. You are acting like that one statement explains everything when there were a bunch of other statements discussing why Kataang didn’t feel right on many levels. There is no way to rephrase her quote any better but what was said that the moments where Aang and Katara save each other felt like nothing special and we become accustomed to it. It doesn’t mean that it made any less meaningful but the interaction it itself felt like nothing significant.

    The lion-turtle concept was also not used or addressed throughout the series and I don’t remember any emphasis on it in that library episode. Quit rationalizing and making up excuses. It was tacked on as a last bit plot device and manuveur.

  28. With the exception of the grand healing moment, the savior moments between Aang and Katara felt no different from when Aang saved Sokka or Toph coming to the rescue and etc. People don’t understand that there were discrepancies to Kataang that conflicted with the characterization and there were certain components of Zutara that would have suited the deeper themes of the story better.

    I usually tend not to agree with the majority and their minds were influenced by the ill-suited canon fodder when better choices could have made though I understand the people involved in the show were limited somewhat. I also agree that cheesy and simplified solutions
    in a children’s show are more popular. I really couldn’t stand how the Kataangers would degrade Zuko and act like he wasn’t worthy. There are also many other points of discussion but there is no use in mentioning all of them especially since the show is done. Your Toph example was relevant because you described what Bryke would do in contention with that plot point even though it was realistic or true to the characters.

  29. Correction, NOT realistic or true to the characters. They undersold their personalities, interaction, and the overall story. I did love the show but there were problems.

  30. Elizabeth, I want to apologize about my remark about the lion-turtle.
    You were right, it was mentioned briefly in the Library episode, seen in Zuko Alone, and I think was mentioned in a couple of other episodes. But I still don’t think it was well-thought out and it was still used as a deux machina of an ending. I was re-watching some of the episodes. There should have been more canon Aang and Toph moments like there should have been more canon Zuko and Katara moments. The Blind Bandit was such a great episode.

  31. Can’t cope with anymore emotional abuse from Kataang. If anybody has done their research..they would see how monstrous Kataang was. Can’t the Zutarians just have at least one page to themselves? In our twisted world, wrong often conquers right. Let Zutara have their say with their comrades and rest in peace.

  32. Another correction. It was mentioned in the library episode but I was right about it not being addressed or properly foreshadowed throughout the series. In Zuko Alone, it was a turtle-duck and I don’t remember the lion turtle angle being built throughout the series until the final few episodes. I was fed with some misinformation. I honestly cannot rewatch this show with the same pleasure and enjoyment. The ill will from Kataangers and Kataang itself along with other deeply disatisfying components are starting to gradually take its toll. Reading over their posts, I can’t believe the inhumanity of their commentating.

  33. in the avatar series theres nothing between zuko or mai never and ..there is nothing nothing between aang or katara ether aang is 12 years old 12 year olds dont dates 14 year olds and good mans dont dated evil girls like mai she`s such a slute she will just try me now

  34. ZUKO WILL NOT GET MARRIED TO MAI .ZUKO WILL ALSO GET MARRIED TO KATARA UNTIL HE WILL FIND HIS MOTHER URSA IN SEASON 4 YOU DIG

  35. mai is not zuko`s girlfriend and she has no changhed of heart ether she was just faking it .ursa will loved to see katara because she`s lot prettier then his mother and ursa will banished mai forever

  36. You really said what I wanted to say. To me the deaus ex machina ruined the whole story and the tension, period. And an hero without sacrifice is not an hero.
    As for the zuko/katara thing…I’m a grown guy of 25, not involved in such trifling matters, but I admit I thought they were going to be together in the end and I liked the idea. They ultimately represented the union of two ppl with different cultures that once dislike each other but, by debating, learned to know each other to the point of throwing away their differences and prejudices by sharing the most powerful empathic emotion: love. Yes, friendship is also good and has the same power (of love), but doesn’t have the same IMPACT.
    And regarding the Anakin/Padme relationship, honestly, don’t you see it’s the same of zuko/katara? Yu say it’s like katara/aang because the male is younger than the female but you don’t seem to realize that anakin and padme were on different grounds and had different views about politics. The two of them debated A LOT. Plus I honestly don’t see anything wrong with the male being younger in a relationship. Saying the contrary is as prejudiced as saying that zuko and katara can’t fit together because they have different cultures (fire/water). The real problem here is that katara mothered aang (and pretty much everybody else BUT zuko) and this made my stomach contract in disgust whenever they kissed. Padme never mothered anakin. As a matter of fact Obi-wan mothered anakin…XD
    Talking abut Mai (a character I loved very very much) she obviously loves zuko cause she actually risked her life and reputation for him. Problem? I don’t see her fit for Zuko. She’s too cold and careless for him. I would have pictured Mai with a character that could counterbalance her, along the line of Sokka for example. Never to mention that talking abut the breaking of a relationship into a kid’s show can be troublesome.
    And to clarify, romeo and juliet fell in love the very first moment they saw each other, katara and zuko’s relationship grows from the two of them confronting each other (more like the beauty and the beast).
    I’ve heard ppl around saying that Avatar has the potential to become the new star wars: maybe it HAD the potential if there weren’t so many loopholes and deus ex machina.
    And those movies they’re making…with that cast, with those fake costumes…I’m totally not going to see them. This show has been pretty much ruined for me, I’m not interested in any sequel of it…
    sorry for my bad English!

  37. And regarding the Anakin/Padme relationship, honestly, don’t you see it’s …

    sorry, this was not referred to the person who wrote the first post, but to another user. I don’t remember the name XD

  38. oh yes zuko and katara they will fit in i saw theme in my own very eyes . maybe on avatar book air 4 they will find ursa and ursa will loved katara but mai is not risking zuko`s life she was trying to steels zuko`s heart we can not let mai become fire lady mai was just playing dumbe anyone she`s evil she seems very …strange to me so get to it

  39. just remember this . zuko will break up with mai and zuko will search ursa and be with katara once and forever and nomore ty lee nomore mai . mai`s revenge will be hers and azula`s and ty lee`s will crash the kyoshi warriors on the kyoshi island and azula will be break free by mai`s evil hands she`s a evil queen she`s not very nice to katara . katara and mai will never be friends they will be enemies and zuko will break up and dumped mai and he decided to take the ring off mai`s finger and never be together nomore and just listen to me now and silance .. i know about anything what mai is plaining to do now she wants zuko to herself and she was not one of aangs gaing she is still part in azula`s lacky in book 4 and lilith will be justice

  40. Hey Lou,

    If you want to read a better discussion of Zutara, visit Oguie Manax’s site on the
    page Avatar, and Shut Up About Dangling Plot Threads. The person who posted that was
    somebody who clearly felt the dangling plot threads don’t matter when I felt it detracted from the core values of the show greatly. I know it has been over a month but I hope you read my post. If you do, I hope you respond to it and react in the right way. It has been awhile since I thought of Avatar. I am replying to you because you became upset at
    my reference and comparison to Anakin-Padme to Aang and Katara.

    I strongly disagree that Anakin-Padme is like Zuko and Katara. I think we can
    agree that our dislike of Kataang goes much deeper than age or appearance which is what
    the opposition fixates on , acting like that is our only beef with it when it is goes much
    deeper than that. Zutara has many aspects and facets. It is too complicated and time-consuming to discuss all of the layers and reasons behind why we ship it. Most of it is rooted
    in thematic and character development, applying symbolic elements, and then it connecting it to the knowlege we have to cinema, literature, and the real world. To be fair, this page focuses on one of the many aspects of Kataang we did not like: the age. Other people
    went into a detailed discussion about that. It is not just about the guy being younger
    but you have to consider the stage of life/development/maturation that they are in.
    You have a 12 yr old kid with a 14 yr old teenager-woman who is much older in spirit. 2 yrs
    would be less of a big deal when they are in their twenties but a 2 yr difference in the gap
    between childhood and emerging adolescence is monumental. As a parent, I cannot approve
    of that. I would be disgusted if my daughter, a highschool freshman, fell into a serious romantic relationship with a 7th grade boy. It is unhealthy and people already explained
    that they might have overlooked that if Katara had a different kind of chemistry/dynamic with Aang or if her personality catered to Aang’s in a different way. She coddled and nutured
    him like a mother would. Some Kataangers try to spin it, saying she was maternal with
    everybody. BS. Her personality and maternal tendencies did not cater to Sokka or Toph’s
    personalities in the way it did with Aang’s. You cannot honestly say she was like a mother to
    Sokka or Toph but she did have that warped dynamic with Aang. Her relationship with Sokka was sisterly/friendly . Even though Toph was the same age as Aang, the dynamic was very different because referring to the specific kind of maturity we were discussing, Toph is on a more equal plane with Katara than Aang is partly because Toph is a girl; the developmental
    difference between men and women is much more pronounced and skewered. There is a reason most women prefer older men. Also you can go into another discussion about
    characterization. Toph is too assertive, independent, strongwilled, and etc to have somebody like Katara mothering her or bossing her around. What we saw in the canon wouldn’t possibly transform into a romantic relationship in real life as how Kataang surreally
    played out in the canon.

    I compared it to Anakin-Padme because like Anakin, Aang at first sight latches on
    to Katara, an older woman, somebody who would be considered an inappropriate love
    interest. In that culture which incorporated old world elements like Avatar, that would
    be viewed as wrong and controversial. Viewing it by personality theory, Padme would never have viewed him as a possible love interest. In the movie/books she looks down on him as
    a young woman would do to a child; warm/affectionate like a sister or aunt to a boy. It reminded me a little of Aang/Katara though the dynamic was much more pronounced between Aang/Katara even though the age gap was far less. Anakin’s so-called love of
    Padme really was childish infatuation like Aang’s. Their was a co-dependent dynamic
    which would prove to be destructive because Aang manages to control Katara in a way
    in which Katara gives in to his selfish demands. We argued it was partly due to a feeling
    of obligation and co-dependance that Katara goes to Aang because we seriously did not
    feel she loved Aang romantically. There was an imbalance of give and take and etc.
    Anakin-Padme proved to be destructive in the end. Anakin was selfish, coldhearted,
    immature and ambitious. Aang is not coldhearted, immature, and I know he doesn’t have
    the potential to go dark side but he did display selfishness, self-absorbedness, and a one-
    track mind, and a petty immaturity. He placed Katara in an odd warped position where
    she felt like she had to choose him and made her blind into considering other options.
    He thought an infatuation was true love and immediately labeled her his soulmate.
    Aang nearly sacrificed bringing balance to the world by stubbornly sticking to his ideals
    of pacifism despite the fact he had engaged in violence before just not to the point of death.
    He rejected the wisdom and guidance of the guru and past Avatars just like how Anakin
    rejected what his mentors and trainers had taught him. Anakin would have reactly badly to Padme rejecting him and I feel Aang would have reacting badly to Katara rejecting him,
    thus putting the world in jeopardy even after he “defeated” Ozai because there was a lot more rebuilding to do.

  41. I have no idea why my post came off disjointed like that. I was also offended by you comparing Anakin-Padme to Zuko/Katara because of how it caters to Kataang’s misportrayals of Zutara for something dark and dysfunctional that it is NOT. Zuko and Katara, at their core…their basic nature…are more alike than different. They seem like polar opposites in the beginning: fire vs. water, royalty vs. peasant, good vs. evil, and etc. It is because Zuko had been brainwashed and his mentality was distorted at birth. His sense of honor, goodness, and loyalty was misplaced but he was somebody who always carried
    integrity, conviction, and really cared about what was best for the world. He was always
    good inside and it his true self came out eventually when he saw the light and finally
    understood on his own how evil the fire nation was to humanity and only he could set things
    right.

    Throughout observing their journeys, particuarly through Zuko’s arc of reformation, redemption, enlightenment, self-awareness, maturity, character growth, and enlightenment: we not only see the themes of Avatar come into full circle but we also pick up on profound similarities between Zuko and Katara: their struggles, pain, overempathetic and sensitive
    nature, bravery, motivation, reactions, intensity, and etc. You can point to ying-yang theory. Fire and water. Sun and Moon. Even their eyes, blue and gold. They parallel and
    then lead to each other. They have both good and negative traits in common. Zuko would
    have not just challenged Katara in the beginning but would have deepened her character because he has seen the best and worst of life. He has an understanding and wisdom of
    good/evil that nobody else has, not even Aang. You can point to many examples like
    both of them rebelling against masters/figures of authority like Zuko fighting Zhao to
    Katara challenging Pakku. You can point to them both using disguises. You can even point to both of them being too old/intense beyond their years and lacking a sense of humor.
    A lot of people focus on the loss of their mothers not just due to the event itself but how it gives them an access to pain and empathy that the other characters don’t have. It tore
    away at their mind, soul, and body. It created a void and an ongoing turmoil. Aang experienced genocide of his civilzation and Sokka also lost his mother but did you ever
    really feel the same level of pain, suffering, and trauma coursing through them throughout the story? Zuko and Katara are both alphas. They are the most deep, complex, intense, raw
    and human of the characters but are also the characters that carry the themes and symbolism of Avatar the most. You cannot summarize Zutara in a few words or even a few
    pages. I disagree that Zuko and Katara have a different view on the world and politics. They
    are not opposites. At the end, Zuko and Katara would have a similar outlook and duty
    to humanity and the need for peace. Their would be a confrontation in the beginning due
    to his past and her prejudices. When they directly interact in Book 3, they are on the same side and are functioning on the same wavelength with the same goals. It would not be
    debates or bickering like Kataang wrongly claims but a mature meeting of minds and morals with them having a much more deeper understanding of life and the world through each other. People don’t realize just how extraordinary a character Zuko was. It takes a special soul with a huge heart and compelling conscience to make that journey both literal and
    symbolic within a year’s time with the lack of guidance, love, and support he had. Aang
    was guided by the right people and surroundings from the very beginning. That is another discussion. Anakin-Padme is very different from Zuko-Katara. Zuko and Katara would
    have defied boundaries to the benefit of the world. It was constructive. Anakin-Padme,
    in contrast, was very destructive. It is insulting to Zutara and Zuko to compare it to Anakin-Padme because Anakin was evil and selfish. He had dark natural instincts which corrupted him despite his good mentoring. Zuko had mostly a corrupt upbringing and mostly through his own with a somewhat limited push from Uncle Iroh through proverbs…but mainly through his own courage/conviction rose above that and turned good. Anakin turned
    into Darth Varder, did you just forget that? Good to bad. Zuko went from bad to good.
    Zuko defied archetypes and cliches. Zutara does not fit into cliches and you can’t truly compare it to any other couple.

  42. I think some people superficially compare Zutara to Romeo and Juliet because Romeo and Juliet were from warring families while Zuko/Katara come from warring countries/cultures.
    I don’t agree with that comparison. Romeo and Juliet was love at first sight but it was fully
    reciprocated. Aang had a childish, puppy-love, and immature infatuation with Katara that
    she didn’t reciprocate because she wasn’t screwed-up, immature, or shallow only to end
    up with Aang because he was her assigned love interest because the show’s creators were
    weird fanboys playing out some unrealistic fantasy. Kataang was one-sided until the very end. Romeo and Juliet was epic and Zutara would have been epic if its potential would have been explored but that is the only thing they have in common. I also disagree with your
    beauty and the beast comparison. Zuko was never a beast, their was a psychology behind
    his behavior and mistakes. He was a far more complex character than that. He felt far more
    human and relatable to me than any of the other characters excluding Katara. Belle reformed
    the beast , in the classic good girl meets and changes bad boy scenario. Katara did not reform Zuko, he was already reformed when he finally started working with her instead of working against her. They would taken their character growth and extra-sensitive, empathetic perspectives to the next level if they had become romantically involved.
    Zuko was also always attractive. He just became more beautiful, inside and out, as the series
    progressed.

    I hope I didn’t offend you and I hope you understand where I am coming from in my
    disagreements. I really found your POV interesting. I agree with your comment, that
    Mai was too cold and careless for Zuko. She did risk her life and reputation for him but
    it was out of her own selfish desires to have a mate, it was not for humanity because she
    still felt that Zuko was a traitor and that the fire nation was right when she did that.
    There was a bad imbalance between Zuko and Mai. At first, they seemed compatible
    until you truly understand what Zuko’s character and motivations are. Mai was a nihilist
    who didn’t care about her family, friends, the fire nation ( she committed the act thinking
    the fire nation was right to save who she viewed as a traitor), and only cared about herself.
    Her feelings for Zuko started out as a childish crush. She saved Zuko out of lonlieness and
    for her own pleasure. It also kind of felt that Zuko went back to her out of obligation because she saved him. Some people trash Zuko for not trying to save Mai, but he was noble in doing that, because he put the world first. The world needed him and the rest of the Gaang to survive. He couldn’t put their lives in jeopardy to save Mai who still had that destructive
    fire nation mentality and might have posed a threat. We never see Mai progress or reform, yet they imply she gets to be Zuko’s queen in the end. It is also interesting how Mai was
    the least appealing of the main female characters, why do I think Bryke was jealous
    of the spectacular figure of Zuko? They were too Aang-centric. Things play out in a little
    boys POV. The deaux machina was crazy but understandable because it was a childrens
    show but Kataang/Maiko along with Bryke were very atrocious in how they kept slandering
    Zutara when they don’t have the depth to comprehend it. It was born from canon elements.

  43. When I watched Avatar, I was intrigued by the potential behind Zuko/Katara. But as someone who never read any interviews or anything, I had a feeling that Aang/Katara was what the creators wanted. Aang liked Katara. It’s a kid’s show on Nickelodeon. Zuko was still a “villain” in season 1. Of course, they were going to have the hero get the girl. I still wanted Zutara but even back then, I knew that this show wouldn’t go there.

    My disappointment came when Mike and Bryan felt the need to make fun of those who like Zuko/Katara (not the ship but the people themselves) and that pretty much turned me off Avatar all together.

    Also, Zuko was my favorite character. He’s the one who’s journey and evolution I followed. And for him to end up with Mai at the end, was a step backwards to me. I don’t mind Kataang but Maiko irritates because it puts Zuko back in the complacent place he was before his exile. It’s comfortable. He’s with a Fire Nation noble girl, who’s weak characterization still bothers me. There’s no challenge, no difficulties. Mai doesn’t force Zuko to grow. If she had her way, he would have never left the Fire Nation the second time. Same with Kataang. It’s comfortable. Where’s the challenge? All I see is Katara’s voice being lost in Aang’s wants and needs.

    Oh well. It was nice to rant after a year of being out of the Avatar fandom. In the end, I always tell the Zutarians I know not to get upset. Why? They’re teenagers who’ll break up eventually. And in my personal fanon, all of those “couples” broke up in the future. I mean, it’s not like Mike/Bryan wrote an epilogue like JKR did for Harry Potter where we even learn the kids’ names :) FANON>>>>>CANON at least in Avator relationships

  44. I completely agree Ann! This page is a good place for venting without too much interference from Kataang/Maiko. I had also been out of the fandom for awhile but the emotional
    abuse and mind/soul f–king from Kataang/Maiko still hurts. They went out of their way
    to try to sink the ship without understanding it and wounding the Zutarians in the most
    inflammatory way possible. Kataang/Maiko was counterdevelopmental and counterintuitive in relation to the series themes, mystical symbolism, asian traditions, and most of all , went
    against the character development. There was so much distortion, contradiction, manipulation,rationalization,spin, and etc from Kataang/Maiko to make it seem that Kataang/Maiko was flawless when it really created a great disconnect to the insights we
    gained, deeper lessons we learned, and emotions/empathy we felt. I felt that even before
    I consciously shipped what I found out was a fandom called Zutara. I was Zutarain before
    becoming aware and interested in the fandoms. It is not suprising that it had such a passionate following from people who operate on a philosphy of humanism and spirituality
    who don’t blindly follow what feels wrong on so many levels. It was the behavior of the
    opposition that truly offended me and turned me off from the show for awhile. Then they had the nerve to misportray us and make terrible generalizations about Zutarians when we were
    just reacting and defending our deeper mentality around the complex characterizations
    of Zuko, Katara, and etc. Kataang/Maiko creating a hatred, intolerance, lack of understanding of themes and characters ( Zuko in particular), and turned what could have
    been fun shipping and interesting debates into such an ugly and inhumane shipping war.
    The level of nastiness, deceit, and intolerance from Kataang/Maiko far outweighed
    any negativity from Zutara, Taang, Tokka, Zukaang, and all of the other couplings combined.
    They lashed out at Zutara the most because they were the most threatened by it even though
    most of us did not campaign for it to become canon, just that it was a better option.
    It was one of the few times in my life where I felt the need to ship. Zuko’s story and Katara’s
    story has still stuck with me profoundly. I can understand difference preferences but it
    was really closedminded and cruel to act like Zutara made no sense, was evil or crazy
    when it was such a deep, beautiful, and good coupling that made us more mentally
    involved in the show. Zuko was epic, profound, and inspirational with Zutara being
    incredibly romantic as well as being socially conscious and mentally stimulating.

    You are so right about Bryke. They had a love/hate attitude towards Zutara and kind of displayed an odd obession with it considering there were no direct references or usages
    of other fandoms or possible pairings in the series except for Zutara. They made a point to mention it in nearly every commentary, conference, and discussion. They even had people openly mock it at a convention and unecessarily took jabs at it. They resent it because
    exposes flaws with the series. Kataang had so many pages, forums, petitions, even had
    skits at conventions, YouTube videos trashing Zutara, and yet they call us insane.

    I couldn’t accept Maiko because it went against Zuko’s arc. Even Zuko-Jin and Zuko-Toph made more sense. Maiko might have worked well as a transitional relationship but
    it was obtuse to act like she was his soulmate. It realistically wouldn’t work out because
    they were incompatible and already had a dysfunctional union lacking in communication
    and understanding of imporant values. Somebody else pointed out that it was Zuko’s
    flaws and darkness that drew him to Mai. ..that side of him that was influenced by the Fire Nation. Being around her, greatly distracted him from his metamorphosis. He would have
    realized what the right side was much sooner if he hadn’t been in a romantic relationship
    with her. The fact that Azula liked the relationship with Mai and that Iroh had tried to set him up with a girl outside of the Fire Nation spoke volumes. Would Iroh have approved of Mai? I think not. Iroh was concerned with Zuko’s reformation and happiness more than anything else. I think he would have been proud and delighted if Zuko and Katara had become romantically involved.

    Kataang, blah, don’t even get me started on it. I feel Katara was trapped and manipulated into that co-dependant relationship as a romantic figure when she was his pseudo-mother and big sister throughout the series. It was a two year age difference but the gap felt so much bigger, deeper, and stronger because of their personalities, dynamic, and because it was during an inappropriate era. No 12 year old should be allowed to date a 14yr old regardless of gender. It was between a kid and a teenager. It felt like a pedophilia because Katara had the mindset of a young woman and Aang was a child in every sense. He was an amazing child who was gifted with supreme powers but he was still an innocent child who was just placed in a extreme situation. Aang and Mai would benefit from these relationships to a certain
    extent but Zuko and Katara would suffer and miss out on a more compatible mate that
    would satisfy their needs and growth. Maiko could lead to disaster because I think Mai
    was very aware of the fact she would become Queen if she married Zuko and would not
    take a breakup lightly. In their final scene together in the series, instead of having a conversation where she understood that Zuko was right or reflected she underhood
    the evils of the Fire Nation’s tyranny, she says ” Don’t breakup with me again”. She has
    no right to order that. It reminded me of how Aang acted like Katara had no right to reject
    him and that she became his property when he forced a kiss on her. He was the main hero
    and he got his prize at the end. The end-game couplings felt cheap, shallow, phony, false
    unhealthy, and unsatisfying in so many ways. Zutara was a coping mechanism for me.
    The action, adventure, fantasy, msyticism, family relationships, friendships, and
    adversary relationships were designed with briliance but the romance failed. Aang and
    Katara had a pure and amazing friendship that also resembled a family-like relationship
    that would be ruined by romance. Bryke only got it right with Sokka and Suki.

  45. dear creators of avatar i want you to listen to me mai will not become queen ..katara is she supposed to kiss zuko and getting married to zuko forever and find his mother period and nomore mai for him got it

  46. mai is not his fucking girlfriend she was just a big fake i still dont trust her anymore she`s crazy as hell just like her friend azula she`s crazy too i dont give a damned for that mai will just go to hell and never get married or never going to see zuko again zuko is katara`s boyfriend not aang`s and surtinlly not mai`s ither now get used to it and bet it

  47. I am personally a kataang fan…..I guess I just prefer the lighter, fun relationships. I love friends becoming a couple kind of relationship….but that’s just me…..I’m a weirdo….
    On a more serious note I do see the Zutarians point of view and understand it, I have absolutely nothing against Zutara. Zuko is a very deep character and I love how he has changed and learned so much through his banishment. I like how he realized that it was the best thing his father could have done for him. He seems a bit obsessive about honor, however, and had done many bad things in the process of trying to gain it. I understand his intentions though, his was cut out from his fathers love because Ozai preferred Azula. He did have his mothers love though. I like Aang’s character because he is sweet and has a very lighthearted personality. He lightens up the mood and tries to let everyone have fun. In some ways he is more mature than Zuko. For example, while Zuko and Katara waned to kill the man who killed her mother, Aang told her that revenge is never the answer. He didn’t stop Katara from facing the man though. Aang is a very forgiving character, he was the first person to look at Zuko as a friend rather than an enemy, even in season 1 , I think it was the Blue Spirit episode. He is rarely violent too (I don’t like violence). However, I can still your views of Aang as well. He can be a bit clingy when it comes to Katara and a bit immature with his responsibilites. You’ve got to remember, though, that is a lot of weight to put on a twelve year old’s shoulder.

  48. I am friends with a couple of the others who posted comments and they did a great job of summarizing and hitting on basic points. I hope other intelligent Zutarians visit this page and
    respond to any Kataangers comments because honestly the overwhelming nature of the
    immaturity and inaccuracy behind each statement is confounding and would take many pages to offer a good rebuttal. I am just rushing through this and honestly after years of analyzing and responding while having to suffer through the mind-bending and hostility from Kataang/Maiko has left me very tired. I think most Zutarians or anybody who developed a critical thinking approach towards Avatar and developed an in-depth psychological understanding of each character would be very frustrated with Cookiesrock’s
    comments about Zuko and Aaang especially in relation to maturity, goodness, and Katara.
    I do appreciate Cookiesrock’s civility considering how most Kataangers’ behaved but
    it would take so many pages to explain what is wrong with her comments about Zuko and
    Aang. That is why I disliked Kataang/Maiko so much because it promoted a very shallow
    mentality that conflicted with the deeper components of the series and got in the way of
    truly understanding the character development. I wish Kataang had left this page alone.

    This just reflects how the majority ( Kataang/Maiko) don’t view the story or characters from all pyschological angles or view anything in a complex or realistic way. It affirms that the romances and the need to affirm ships created a deep barrier for many of the viewers because half of the audience don’t understand Zuko or they don’t recognize Aang’s flaws and the flaws with the story.

  49. Gosh, I wish I had more time to discuss details and offer a full explanation. Aang, was NOT
    the most mature character in the series. He was the least mature and most self-oriented
    of the Gaang. He also did not make any major realistic sacrifices, had the least development out of the Gaang, and his outlook on life is quite juvenile. He proved himself to be very hypocritical and shallow in many episodes and his stance on pacifism is not as noble as Bryke wants you to believe.

    I hope Steelbound, the original commentator responds to Cookie and with all due respect I don’t think Cookie understands the truth or meaning behind the original post. I
    also don’t think people understands the enormity or depth behind Zuko’s life, struggles,
    or the psychology behind his character. Zuko was born into the wrong side and was raised
    with the wrong ideology which is why his sense of honor and his view on what actions are good/bad was misplaced and warped in the beginning. In his mind, he was doing whatever it took to regain his honor so he could be a good prince and contribute to his country’s welfare. He did not know what he was doing was “bad” was first and you don’t acknowledge what he went through physically, spiritually, emotionally, and mentally to switch sides. For me, Zuko was the real hero of the story. He had an intense devotion to humanity and honor like Katara and would have done whatever it took to set things right. He had the same drive, motivation, and intensity among many other character traits that were similar to Katara’s.
    Zuko and Katara had a strong reaction to their circumstances and that turmoil that tore
    at their souls. They understood the gravity behind the circumstances. He, in Aaang’s position, would never have spent time goofing off, would never have run away from his responsibilities, would have not needed constant coddling or encouragement like Aang,
    and he certaintly would not let his ideals conflict with what needed to be done to save the world. Zuko and Katara both displayed moral complexity, depth, and behavioral relativism.
    People don’t understand the magnitude of the corruption and brainwashing that Zuko overcame in a short period of time. His amazing humanity, noble ideals, and inner goodness led him to have that moral metaphorsis. Most people in our society would not be capable
    of transforming the way Zuko did. It went way beyond not having his father’s love or the emotional abuse/rejection his father inflicted on him but the entire sociopolitical attitude
    and philosophies he was raised with were immoral and destructive to humanity. Even what love he received from his mother would not contribute to stability or the right approach to life. He lost his mother and a person needs a support system that extends beyond one parent who also was brainwashed by the Fire Nation. Iroh served as a guide but to a limited extent.
    Zuko really grew up as an outcast and rebel who learned through his struggles and mistakes
    of what is right and wrong. He redeemed himself. Zuko and Katara reflected themselves to be human and expressed a wide emotional, psychological spectrum that adults related to while
    Aang was a stagnant caricature that displayed a juvenile attitude on life.

  50. Aang did practice violence and did lose his temper many times. He killed that wasp
    creature and engaged in actions like cutting off Fire Nation air balloons that most
    certaintly contributed to deaths even if it was not directly shown in the show. Aang did kill people. He would have killed those sandbenders on account of Appa if Katara had not calmed him out of his Avatar-State. People forget that the backdrop of this show is set during a 100 year WAR, and the whole “violence” is not the answer is nonsensical and contradictory. Removing Ozai’s firebending through magical lion-turtle would NOT solve the problem considering there would be thousands of civilians still loyal to Ozai and there are many other ways Ozai could incite another battle or overthrow Zuko. Ozai and Azula are both manipulative masterminds and cunning, resourceful leaders who have a hundreds of years of an evil legacy with many followers in their favor. Firebending was NOT the only thing that made Ozai and Azula so powerful and ruthless. Aang flat-out rejecting the idea of killing Ozai because it would be uncomfortable and traumatic for him which would risk the safety of the entire world and future was so selfish and short-sided. It was ridiculous how it was Zuko who had to remind and push Aang of what he needed to do, how did Aaang expect to defeat Ozai the entire journey, did Aang just know that an ex deux machina would come along and prevent any hard action from him?

    The series also displays an inaccurate view of buddhism and pacifism. People forget that the monks raised him to fight. They showed the dead bodies of Fire Nation soldiers at Aang’s
    temple showing that obviously the monks fought back. They would not sit back and let innocent people die. The philosphy teaches respect towards all walks of life but there is no policy against killing especially when you are defending yourself and others. Ozai could have killed Aang and his first part of the plan was to wipe out the Earth Kingdom, to committ mass genocide. It was selfish and inhumane for Aang to risk all of that. It would be different if Aang had come up with some intelligent plan or alternative manuever and realized that he might have to kill Ozai even as a last resort but to flat-out refuse the idea as if it were evil and unfair when it was perfectly justified? The society of Avatar uses old world customs and did not even have a strong or fair court system to punish people like Ozai. Aang refused to listen to what all of the past Avatars told him or even what Katara advised him to do. It is absurd how he wouldn’t even consider the idea. Aang’s outlook was far from noble or deep. Not to mention that Zuko will have to carry the burdens of any trouble from the Fire Nation or even the other bending nations because of Aang’s failure to resolve the main problem.

  51. The fact that Zuko even learned to realize in a short amount of time that the Fire nation’s
    tyranny and outlook was evil and destructive…risked his life to turn against his own family,
    country to help Aang save the world knowing it could all fail…knowing he would have to work hard for the Gaang to forgive and understand him…going back on everything he ever had to help the save the world displayed the most maturity and sacrifice out of any other character in the series. Aang would never have resumed his Avatar duties if not for Katara and Sokka. The Kataangers/ Maikoans don’t even understand why he was so obsessed with finding the Avatar in the first season and why it was not easy for him to discover the truth considering his upbringing and lack of guidance. Aang had the right sources of love, support, encouragement, and aid from his very conception, it was the opposite for Zuko. Everything seemed to come easily for Aang and it is not even fair to compare him with Zuko or Katara.

    You don’t just look at the character’s behaviors but look at all emotional factors, influences…
    and what happened in their lives to cause those behaviors and mistakes. Zuko and Katara both had to overcome the need for revenge and overcome dark desires. It is funny how
    Kataang uses The Southern Raiders episode to prove their pairing and Aang’s so-called
    perfection and to disprove Zutara when it reflected more than any other episode why
    Aang and Katara were a mismatch.

    Zuko and Katara have an access to empathy and understanding that they do not share with any other characters. That was reflected in The Southern Raiders. Aang was self-righteous and preachy. He showed no sympathy or understanding for what Katara was going through which is pretty rotten considering the constant compassion and sympathy that Katara showed him. He was even low enough to throw out a remark about Jet. Katara was not killing innocent people but wanting to confront the man who murdered her mother. Zuko understood that. They both learned that wiping him out was not the right course of action. Katara needed closure and she saw that the man who killed her mother was not some monster but a pathetic former soldier. That man could have served as a danger to others but Katara understood he no longer posed much of a threat. Aang acted like Katara had no right to be so upset. He supported her decision AFTER she chose to already go and handle the situation. Zuko and Katara are on the same wavelength, you saw their rapport in many ways,
    but that is another discussion. It is annoying that the creators tack in a comment about Zuko saying that Aang knew what Katara needed when he clearly did NOT. Katara’s feelings and motivations were justified and showed admirable restraint. Aang even makes a comment about forgiveness and Katara replies that she will NEVER forgive him. As she should not.
    What would have Aang done if he was confronted with soldiers who killed Gyatso or all of his airbender friends? Then he refuses to kill the leader who is responsible for all this wrong
    murder. It was Zuko who helped her resolve her issues with her mother’s death and understood the pain and damage behind that. He offered real support and understanding.
    Aang showed such double standards. It would be different if Aang wanted to sit down and have a conversation instead of giving a sanctimonious lecture. He showed no compassion, only judgement and disapproval. Zuko and Katara’s reactions may not be ideal but it was a human reaction to their losses. They both lost their mothers because their mothers gave up their lives to protect them. Katara was like a mother and sister to Aang but she was also a great friend who always gave Aang a shoulder to cry on. It was always about satisfying Aang’s needs. What about Katara’s needs and issues? Part of the reason I shipped Zutara was because Zuko and Katara have the complexity, experience, similarities, and understanding to heal each other’s wounds, forgive, and deepen their development. They would have forced each other to confront their issues and resolve it, no matter how painful it might be.
    They were on the same psychological wavelength. Aang was on a different plane altogether.
    He was too childish, immature, self-oriented ( always concerned about how everything
    affected him or made him look good or bad) and too light-hearted for Katara. It was a very imbalanced dynamic in many ways. Cookie forgot that Aang did try to stop Katara from facing her mother’s murderer and it was only after she was on the verge of leaving did he
    he say it was okay and that was kind of a copout. She had every right to feel the way she did.
    It was not immaturity but humanity and empathy that Zuko provided. You have to look beyond the surface and probe into each of the character’s minds and experiences to obtain a deeper understanding.

  52. I apologize for any grammatical mistakes because I was rushing through this post but
    I hope people understood my points and hopefully other Zutarians elaborate on that.
    If I came off sounding condescending or cruel to people like Cookie, I am sorry for that, but it was hard reading those statements. I had to respond because there is no way that Aang is more mature than Zuko and Katara. He is among the least mature heroes I have ever seen on television. If he had not been blessed with supreme powers that nobody else had, then he would NOT be cut out for the responsibility of an Avatar. He never would have been able to accomplish anything if not for the rest of the Gaang. Zuko’s fierce independence and determination, bravery, etc….along with many other traits made me fall for him but the greatest behavior he displayed was sacrifice. He sacrificed and struggled the most, overcame most of the obstacles by himself, and managed to overcome boundaries/ divisions. It was the atypical arc of Zuko that made the series so special. He was my favorite character and he made Avatar epic.

  53. Is it just me or did Bryke later on, ADD dialogue to The Southern Raiders and a couple of the other episodes? I think they did because the dialogue and Aang’s behavior in that episode changed a little bit from how it was when the episode originally aired. I think they did that to defuse some more criticism about Kataang to make Aang seem more empathetic and wise. I wouldn’t put it past Bryke to do something sneaky like that. I’m so happy that somebody pointed out that Aang has killed before. He cut off those war balloons in mid-air and also in SOTN, he sunk a bunch of ships ( in spirit form) but it was still his actions, and he killed that wasp creature without any remorse or shame. It is also implausible to think the people in the Fire Nation
    were not killed in the battles in the DOBS episode or other episodes
    where battles took place. The war was not just one-sided where only the
    fire nation took lives. There was an offensive and defensive force in all of the nations. So it is okay to take out soldiers who were performing their patriotic duties but so “evil” to take out the ringleader when Aang destined to face him in direct combat? Aang did display some inconsistent, hypocritical, self-oriented, and immature behavior that not only contributed to his imbalanced dynamic and incompatibility with Katara but greatly diminished him as the supposed hero.

    I also liked the point that was mentioned about the ex deux machina. It would be different if they built up an angle about combining all of the elements or where he uses what he learned in training but instead they throw spiritbending suddenly from a magic lion-turtle to avoid Aaang doing what would have been inevitable if there was no cop-out writing to save him. If he came up with an alternative manuveur to remove Ozai’s threat in advance and chose to explore his options…that would be different. Instead he acts like taking Ozai’s life is evil, wrong, and he wouldn’t even consider doing it even if it meant the world would be destroyed on that account. You are right, removing Ozai’s firebending would not solve the problem.
    It is also good to point out that Avatar took place in the mystical old world, not in the modern world where there are fair trials. Even in a fair trial, Ozai would probably suffer the death penalty, just like how somebody like Hitler or another tyrant who caused global destruction would be put to death for war crimes that negatively affected the entire world. I know Hitler’s fate was different but the point is that in both the old world and new world, somebody like Ozai
    would be sentenced to death.

    Aang did not practice what he preached and the show suddenly took a childish turn in regards to war and humanity. I did not like the romance either because how it completely underminded the character and thematic development of Zuko and Katara. Those canon relationships would not last. Such a waste of epic potential on many levels.

  54. It was okay to take out soldiers who were performing their patriotic duties but so “evil” to take out the ringleader and central force of the war when it was Aang’s destiny to face him in direct combat? I despised how Aang, the least mature of the Gaang, got revered as the wise, all-knowing hero when that was far from the case. The show had many issues that would piss any intelligent and rational person off.
    I was so dissatisifed and disappointed with how the show ended.

  55. attention all trainers and leaders this sarah speeking i want you all of you to return to your homes and mantions now. machop bala and i we have an idea i want you people to take a reast and breaks right now all of your pokemon have being cure these people to long but all of you dont want to use these pokemon nomore bala and i we have a butterfly effection book it`s the only way to make these people back to normale nobody will get killed of being eating or get bitting satan hasnt won yet i repet return to your pokemons into there pokeballs i repet return to your pokemons into there pokeballs . attention all waterbenders attention all waterbenders i want all of you to take a rest youve being cure people for 5 and 10 weeks ago and i want all of you people to return to your nation homes emitiatly now we got a plain you could just take a break now thank you

  56. dont worry zuko will search for his mother .. besides he all ready have a girlfriend katara and go search his mother together its not over yet

  57. of course zuko and katara will be together nomore mai and nomore aang eather katara will change her mind to be with katara again and no aang aang is too young for her aang will go to toph zuko and katara will be here in book air 4 but not maiko and kataang . his mother is the painted lady it must be her it has be

  58. NO MAI WAS NOT TRYING TO SAVE ZUKO SHE WAS JUST FAKING IT SHE WAS TRYING TO KILL ZUKO AND ME KATARA WILL BE HIS QUEEN JUST LIKE I PROMISED AND MAI WILL NOT BE HIS SHE WAS JUST BEING MEAN TO THEME SHE IS EVIL DID YOU HERE ME

  59. I dont like how a bunch of you are bashing Aang. He loves her. And I know thats hard to accept for a lot of you. I also dont like how your saying all Kataangers are rude
    and immature. Because I am one. I find that highly offensive. And I dont try to pick fights. I have seen Kataangers call Zutarians the rude ones. I have met nice Kataangers and nice Zutarians so please shut up about that. I like Kataang because you can tell they really care about eachother. Aang loves her. And Kataras feelings were revealed at the end. I do like Zuko as a charactor. I do not bash him. (That was also offensive) I have never seen any evidence of Zutara so Im not sure what to say about it. Maybe that it just wasnt meant to be?

    Sarah Gamibill, LOL Your crazy. But they are making a series. Avatar Legend of Korra. And evidently Aang and Katara get married as well as Mai and Zuko.

  60. Honestly, people like you reflect what the majority of Kataang/Maiko supporters are like.

    Most of us were reacting to how a majority of Kataangers/Maikoans mistreated and bullied us.
    They persecuted us for years and in the most horrid way possible. Then Zutarians started fighting back and lashing out. They did not respect us and so many of us quit respecting them. Kataangers/Maikoans broke the line of restraint and civility. Maybe we are generalizing Kataangers/Maikoans, but if you analyze thousands of commentary from tons of websites from the beginning of the ship war…you will understand why we reacted the way we did. You can’t be cruel to people and spin around outrageous flaws in the story; then expect people not to respond. I would not be antagonistic if the majority of Kataangers/Maikoans did not display a destructive viewpoint.
    I know some Kataangers/Maikoans might be nice but most of them did not behave decently. Nice
    Kataangers are in the minority. That is not just a blind assumption but came as a result of analyzing so many posts. Most Zutarians started out respectful but we were provoked and abused on a large scale so we quit being nice & civil.

    You are being rude and immature. Don’t tell people to shut up. That was the core of the problem, that Kataangers/Maikoans tried to intimidate and bully us from voicing any criticisms about the series. Your post is picking a fight. It is because of all of the fighting and problems with the series, that we chose to vent here.

    We also have a right to criticize Aang. We did not blindly bash him but provided reasons and evidence of his flaws. We explained why we felt he was incompatible with Katara. We discussed and
    gave examples of why we felt he was an inadequate hero. I actually like Aang but he is flawed and his narrative degraded the overall story. We can’t worship him and treat him as something he is not.
    Zutarians acknowlege everybody’s flaws and mistakes.

    What he felt for her was warped infatuation, not love. People sometimes fall for the wrong person. Caring about somebody does not always equal compatibility. We also explained how they were incompatible. Katara showed platonic and familial feelings for him throughout the series. Feelings and a well-established dynamic cannot disappear in a moment or for one episode. Many Kataangers bash Zuko and don’t understand him at all. It might be a generalization but it is a valid one. Also, there was plenty of evidence for Zutara. The evidence was subjective and symbolic. Their personality and evolutionary arcs were the evidence. The chemistry and subtext was the evidence.
    It is denying that plausiblity and sense behind an obviously good pairing that made people revolt.

    Kataangers/Maikoans are very hypocritical. They deny their behavior and like to label us as horrid.
    See how your people treat others before you judge the victims for lashing out. I will not shut up.
    Read our past posts for in-depth rebuttals towards what you claimed. You ignore every reason, piece of evidence, and explanation. Then you are trying to start another fight by acting like we have no basis for what we are saying. Getting into another discussion with you would be hopeless. All the past posts were summaries but they provided a good idea of where we are coming from. You refuse to understand or accept anything. I can’t support things that are wrong despite any manipulation or bullying. All of the past entries were good thesis statements. Re-read the past posts instead of just
    lashing out at what offended you. People like you offended us. The resolution of the series and contradiction of character development offended us. It is more than just a cartoon to us. Avatar
    is a reflection of attitudes and ethics.

    We provided plenty of basic reasons. These were just the tip of the iceberg. If you can’t stand the heat, go to one of the many Kataanger/Maikoan communities who like to bash us and ignore why
    we feel/behave the way we do.

  61. i told you already katara is zuko`s wife not mai i already changed my time journal book and it worked perfectly katara and zuko did have kids they have a daughter and son

  62. ZUKO AND KATARA ARE MARRIED NOW . BUT NOT MAI SHE GOT END UP AND BEING ALONE AND GO INSANE LIKE HER FRIEND AZULA . BUT KATARA DIED AN OLD AGE AND ZUKO PAST AWAY BUT IM GOING TO BRING THEM BACK TO LIFE

  63. Some Zutarians behave just as badly as The Kataanger/Maikoans. I have seen Zutarians bully each other. Judge the ship by the perspective, not the people who support it. I nearly stopped shipping Zutara because I had some toxic experiences and I didn’t like the way some people behaved. Shipping Zutara for me came as a result of my attitude towards plot,
    writing, characterization, themes, and flaws in the story. The attitude towards romance/shipping was a side-effect. Just don’t associate the ship with all of the people who claim to support it. Fanaticism and generalizing is never a good thing. The worst behaviors and most poisonous personalities come out on the internet. I know Zutarians were mistreated and misportrayed by most Kataangers/Maikoans but not all Zutarians are good people. I am speaking from personal experience. I would actually warn people to NOT join
    any ATLA communities because all of them have become toxic and are usually not run
    by fair, sane, or rational people. Too many people from all ships have had destructive
    experiences. It can turn into an unhealthy obsession.

    I actually loved Mai in the beginning but she never evolved to the point where I felt she could heal Zuko’s wounds and emotional scars as well as Katara. There is tons of thematic and personality parallels between Zuko & Katara. The deux ex machina was a cop-out.
    Zuko did not deserve to be villifed and misunderstood by half of the fandom. Nor did Aang deserve to be glorified for all of his behavior when there was hypocrisy, immaturity , self-absorbedness, and inconsistency. I did like and respect all of the characters on some level.
    There was just plenty of room for improvement.

  64. Kataangers? Zutarians?

    What world is this exactly.

    I entirely missed out on this little sub-cultural aspect of Avatar in the US it seems.

    are rude
    and immature. Because I am one.

    Well yes, people who say “Sarah Gamibill, LOL Your crazy” can be considered rude and immature. What else is new.

    One of the more fundamental issues with how America does shows is that it is very much a collaborative process. However, that doesn’t just mean different people direct the episodes, but even that different people are responsible for writing the original story board material. And their synthesis is not nearly as great as in Japan. The fundamental reason is due to the fact that Japan often times uses the original material from one integral author and creative thinker. When the directors and what not then use the OP and cut it up, they sometimes produce an epic success and other times an epic failure. Although with Utawarerumono, it can be argued that it was a little of both.

    The whole issue with character development and ending with Avatar is the same way. It suffers from these quintessential American production flaws. Not a consistent ending, due to America’s tendency to not care about an epic ending or simply not having the ability to achieve a consistent ending combined with too much creative freedom on the part of individuals who had different views on plot and characters in writing the plot and storyboard. A bad director for an anime show can conceivably entirely screw up the source material and produce drek as a result.

    On a comparison level, America has more general creativity and flexibility but less quality source material and less institutional knowledge. Japan has better source material and greater institution knowledge, though their social customs and hierarchies can make for inflexible solutions.

    There is also a fundamentally different issue. Romance and understanding psychology of male and females is pretty messed up amongst art students and media producers in the US. They do not get it. They have not had any kind of cultural background from which to get it. This was due to some cultural and societal instabilities brought on by various social movements in the past. But in the end it has created a situation where males and females are living in disharmony and they simply do not understand each other or even want to generally speaking. This is known to many as the hook up culture, the hell of dating, and divorces. There is no consistent cultural backdrop that artists can draw upon to simply “smooth” things out when characters have a relationship malfunction. They are learning as they go. Experimenting as they go. The results… are predictable.

    Japan, on the other hand, has several cultural themes concerning the place of men and women they can draw upon as inspiration. The US once had those as well. People knew them as “Father Knows Best” and “Leave it to Beaver”. Those are considered obsolete now, of course. But nothing really consistent or better replaced them. That was the catch.

    Much of American tv production is economics based. The product is not the story itself or a particularly consistent beginning, middle, and end, but what would appeal to mass consumer interest to last for many many seasons. Or just the current season even.

    Thus, there is no real ending. Because there is always the hope that they will “get a next season”. Producers seem to think that if you tie up a lot of loose ends at the Season Finale 1, that nobody will want to see the next season. I don’t know why this seems to be the dominant meme, but look at the general American tv series and that’s what it is, in the end. They keep coming up with these “plot twists” but they are sort of like created on demand when people know that there will be another season .The writers then start “working on it”. Instead of say an original author having an ending in mind and working his story to that point from a consistent framework, the producers work piece by piece. Whenever they can get it. That tends to create problems after awhile. Especially with a multi faceted tv series that “had to end” at a certain point. “Some time” tends to get nebulous with the production schedule and people lose focus. Instead of working on the story and getting it right, production schedules and producers wanting more “material” to sell or whatever for DVDs, now come into the fore. Depending on the amount of creative control the original designers had, the producers and advertisers might even be able to make extreme demands that warp the story entirely. This happened with Babylon 5′s sequel, when they were looking for the cure to the plague. Fox tv producers wanted more spice and sex and the original creator dropped the entire project as a result.

    In the end, I always respect authors like Brandon Sanderson that gives a good bang for the buck ending. Even when it is part of a longer series, I never feel wanting at the end of one of his stories. The primary climatic arc is finished, but the overall arc remains to be seen. Thus everyone is satisfied, both the reader as well as those interested in selling or buying the sequel.

    It is extremely hard for a vision of original artistic and creative work to be able to be produced in America’s current tv culture. Those that have done such, have either failed to garner a second season, such as Firefly, or have had immense amounts of stress doing so.

    The Japanese’s production institution seems to go for shortness and thus there’s a focus on concentrating a lot of quality in a few episodes. Whereas in the US it seems to be the longer it lasts the more money certain people seem to think they are making. And if they think they won’t be making this money, they cut the series and replace it with another one entirely.

  65. For all Zutarians: Avoid The Cake was a Lie livejournal community.
    They have some good discussions but do NOT join because the worst personalities who made up our fandom congregate there. That place has a bad reputation among all sides of fandom.

    It is sad that it is hard to find or access sites with good “Zutarian”
    discussions now. Honestly, we should all just move on. It has been more than two years. There is no sense in holding onto this ill will and toxic debates. It was never about shipping for me but about a perspective that addressed all facets of the show that also happend to include romantic preferences. I will always love Zuko, Katara, and Toph for what they represented. The series really did make me feel and think on a deep level and made me explore my perspectives on many issues, concepts, and ideals.

    It is shame that people were trashed for pointing out any flaws in this series or for engaging in any meta-criticism but we should all move on to other interests. I have seen too many people form an unhealthy obsession with this.

  66. hey did you here the news aang is gotta die and untile then katara will remarried to zuko and become his fire lady nomore fire lady mai mai is such a bitch

  67. sarah gambill you need to take a chill pill
    katara and aang got together and mai is not a “bitch”, she’s a considerate girlfriend.
    I’m just happy Legend of Korra revealed that Tenzin is Aang and Katara’s son. Stay pressed, Zutarians.

  68. This page was about venting about the finale, its issues, and the show’s problems which included the romances. It is horrible how you still have Kataanger/Maikoans mocking and degrading us because they liked the screwed-up romances that did not suit the characters and because they chose to embrace rather than analyze the flaws of the series.

    Mai was not a considerate girlfriend, she was the complete opposite of what Zuko needed and deserved. I am horrified but not suprised that Tenzin is the son of Aang and Katara.
    The idea of that unhealthy, ill-suited relationship lasting is a joke. It is not just about Zutara but about critical thinking and analysis.

    Why can’t the canon nazi’s leave this page alone?

  69. I think the entire thing was amazing.. ending and all. The Lion Turtle was mentioned in the library actually… while the gang was pondering through the collections, Aang sat on the floor, opened a book, and said, “Hey look! A Lion Turtle!” and showed them the picture within the book. And like any human being, he felt frustration when he couldn’t find the answer he seeked. It wasn’t at all childish, I too would have been frustrated. The writers were genius, I love and admire every aspect and detail of the series <3 I can only hope The Legend of Korra will prove to be as enticing a series as the first.

    -Adriana

  70. “The second aspect that bothered me, and which gave raise to the title, is how Aang turns his back on the collected wisdom of the past Avatars.”

    This sounds like American anti-wisdom came to the fore. If the japanese had done it, casually dismissing the Wisdom of the Ages (get it, age), would have been a big no no. At least in this fantasy setting.

  71. I am impressed there is this much activity after nearly 4 years.

    I completely agree the lion-turtle was a cheap plot twist. It was a stall move to reposition other characters and wrap up secondary threads within the story, while allowing Aang to complete solitary introspection. It could’ve been Gyatso speaking to him from the friggin clouds (which would’ve been more believable – “Aang, remember who you are”).

    I found the Fire Nation coup clunky and awkward. I would think the entire nation would resist Zuko or anyone in his family taking the throne, after 100 years of conflict. Why was Zuko surprised when Mai was let out of prison – he’s the damn Fire Lord! He didn’t think granting pardons to his friends and their families would be a top priority?

    What REALLY bugged me the most was Katara’s involvement. Once again, they crescendo to a massive battle, and she sees almost NO action. A water bending master, a proven warrior, and her job is Zuko’s sidekick. The Day of the Black Sun, she limps her dad around the battlefield. What a waste!

    As for Aang never developing as a character… I can agree he did not develop as MUCH as the others, but he did change from a happy-go-lucky child to an introspective teen who has to deal with the burden of the entire world. He IS only 12, and expected to act as a fully realized Avatar. I think he deserves a break.

    I thought the very end was too soft. Look how happy and utterly content everyone is! Why is the Fire Lord hanging around a tea shop!? I can’t stand afterglow endings, ugh.

    As for the romance aspects… Katara + Aang is absolutely realistic (but I can’t describe why in detail without telling my life story). As for Zuko + Mai and Sokka + Suki, they are not the primary characters and therefore do not necessarily end up together, forever, happily ever after. They’re just teenagers and loves come and go.

    I’m a little disturbed by the amount of back-and-forth regarding Zuko or Aang with Katara. Aang and Zuko are extremely similar characters (as they have to be) and it is their similarities that both create conflict in the beginning and draw them together in the end. They are both selfish, single-minded, nearly immoral, and have lost important loved ones due to the same group of people (ie Fire Lords). They both have a constant guardian who tries to teach by example. To say that one character is wildly different from the other is utterly false. They may encounter different obstacles, and they may choose different paths (obviously, to show differing outcomes to teach the viewer lessons, or to create a yin/yang effect) but ultimately they are the same person.

    And from experience – the girl is going for the guy who’s happy-go-lucky, carefree, and self-confident on his better days. This may be a story, and in fiction you can create anything you want, but in the real world that’s how it works.

  72. I am sorry, I disagree with this deeply. As to reasons why, read the above posts. There are already tons of posts that refute what you said. Aang and Zuko are NOT the same person. They did not grow up the same way nor have the same type of growth, guardianship, or character development. Aang got coddled and did not make sacrifices. It is just an insult to any intelligent mind to pretend Aang and Zuko were the same.

    I could go onto a discussion why but it has been four years and I think the multitude of posts above me already explain this in detail. I also do not understand why Kataang/Maiko shippers have to troll every page and have the last word. It is also disgusting of you to imply we are “disturbing” to recognize the flaws in the canon ships.

    Kataang is NOT realistic. It is not realistic for a 14 year old girl to fall for a 12 year old boy without any development of her feelings. It is not realistic that a little boys ends up with his first crush at 12 years old with the first girl he meets. It is not realistic that a girl would fall in love with a kid she raised, taught, and treated like her own brother. There was deep maturity and personality imbalance. Zuko and Katara had a lot more in common and many psychological parallels that would make the compatible despite appearances. It is not realistic that Zuko after everything he went through and through all his redemption, would go back to a weak and dysfunctional relationship with a girl like Mai who did not reform or ever gain spiritual understanding of his convictions.

    From experience, Katara would go for a guy who has a similar age, personality-type, and can relate to her.

  73. The Lion Turtle was a deux ex machina and being mentioned once to prevent Aang from taking the realistic course of action was NOT proper development. I notice that Kataang/Maiko shippers because they like the flawed canon ships also tend to rationalize and excuse the flaws in the story and characterization.

    Also, it is a sick joke to pretend that Aang and Zuko are the same. I personally think Zuko was the most similar to Katara or perhaps Toph. Kataang and Maiko are two of the most flawed, UNREALISTIC, and unhealthy ships I ever seen. Aang was like Katara’s little brother throughout the series and it is not healthy or sane that they would just get into a romantic relationship with each other. Her personality and dynamic with him would NOT naturally translate into a romantic relationship in real life. No sane 14 yr old girl would date a 12 year old boy. That is borderline pedophilia, because it is between a teenager and a child. In real life, Aang’s crush would have been most likely unrequited. Zuko was far more compatible once you get past the surface and see what they had in common & how they would provide balance & the ultimate ying-yang. You also denounce everything about Zuko to label Aang the care-free, happy, and confident one without considering why Zuko was damaged when Aang was a prodigy who never even dealt with the trauma in his life or was not even severely impacted by it. Zuko had to endure far more personal suffering and personal growth by risking everything.

    I can writes pages and pages about Maiko. It shouldn’t be necessary when people have already written tons of essays about this already. Read the essays and see what POV dominates on a page before you choose to invade it. Why can’t the opposition leave any page the hell alone?! This place was to vent about the finale issues, story flaws, and rant about the endgame ships that did NOT make sense to alot of people.

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