Title: The Legend of Korra.
Number of episodes: 14.
Release Date: 2013.
ORIGINAL NETWORK: Nickelodeon.
Genre(s): Animation, Action, Adventure.
Created by: Michael Dante DiMartino & Bryan Konietzko.
Composer(s): Jeremy Zuckerman & Benjamin Wynn.
Cast: Zach Tyler Eisen, Dee Bradley Baker, Mae Whitman, Jack De Sena, Dante Basco, Michaela Jill Murphy, Mako, and many more!
My Overall Rating:
Previously in The Legend of Korra TV series:
As an Avatar, an individual that can bend all four elements and who is coined as the antithesis of chaos, an entity responsible for establishing peace in the world, the burden of responsibility lies upon their shoulder to assure the greatest amount of good for the greatest number of people. For the young Korra, having only just unlocked her ability to bend her fourth and final element, air, and to connect with the wondrous Spirit World, it is forthwith a task beyond her understanding to serve as the ultimate link between humans and spirits. When push comes to shove, it is in the midst of adversity, under trying predicaments, that Avatar Korra needs to make difficult decisions, whether the world is with her or not. Continuing their endeavour into developing the Avatar world, creators Michael Dante DiMartino and Bryan Konietzko present the second season of The Legend of Korra, split into fourteen episodes, titled Book Two: Spirits.
What is The Legend of Korra (2012) Season 2 about? Six months after the difficult battle against Amon and the Equalists, Avatar Korra can now enter the Avatar State and explore the Spirit World. Convinced in her ability to masterfully bend all four elements, rushing ahead to find new ways to become the best version of herself, a terrifying situation during a winter solstice event at the Southern Water Tribe leaves plenty perplexed at the state of the world as dark spirits mysteriously appear and wreak havoc. Having witnessed Unalaq, Korra’s uncle, utilize unique spiritual waterbending techniques to soothe these dark spirits, Korra wishes to become his apprentice to further sharpen her own Avatar skills. What follows is a tale of division that forces Korra’s hands into doing what’s right. Much of the material and spirit worlds’ fate is up to her now.
As commonly seen in the Avatar universe, political conflicts are key driving forces in the ongoing character growth observed in the protagonist. This time around, the civil war, between Northern and Southern Water Tribes, makes for an interesting background clash that puts Korra between a rock and a hard place. Add family into the equation and you’ve got yourself a recipe for disaster, especially with Korra’s tendency to be very much hot-headed and prone to dramatic decision-making. However, the antagonist is not much of a surprise in this season, and the floppy attempts to prove viewers otherwise were not only unconvincing but counterproductive in developing a sense of urgency in the characters’ plight. Fortunately, the heart of the conflict remains theoretically intriguing and ultimately leads up to some thrilling moments that allow Korra to reflect on her role as the link between the material and the spiritual world. In fact, the best episodes of the season lie in a two-episode origin story titled Beginnings with unique visual artwork and story-telling that invites viewers on a journey to discover the first Avatar’s roots and the debate between good and evil.
Side characters also get entertaining subplots to further their own personal growth. From Mako working as a policeman and trying to prove to himself and the force that he’s dedicated to his work, to the truth, and justice, to Bolin making a comedic yet empowering detour into the performance industry as a movie star serving propagandist objectives, their journey pushes them further into understanding who they are and what they want to achieve. A balanced exploration of each of their adventures throughout the season also allows viewers to disconnect and put some distance from some of the more frustrating elements, especially in regard to Korra’s temper and decisions. Unfortunately, romance continues to be a very distracting and cringe-worthy component of the series. Not only does Bolin find himself stuck in a domination-submission relationship with a girl who always goes around with her twin brother (sure, it is funny at times) but a redundant and uninteresting love triangle with Korra, Mako, and Asami is brought back unnecessarily (nope, this is never funny).
Despite the creators encountering issues with the animation studios who worked on this second season, the series continues to deliver some of the most visually-captivating animation sequences, especially with its action sequences, where one could only qualify it as poetry in motion. The two-episode origin story Beginnings is also accomplished with an unparalleled and gorgeous artistic vision that merits its own standing ovation. While the story might not necessarily be completely revolutionary, it does lead up to a dramatic and impressive finale that inevitably has important consequences on the material and spiritual world for the following season. With the animation and score bringing it all to life and watching these characters further develop their understanding and perception of the world, Kora, although her personality makes it difficult to unequivocally adore, and her gang are still lively and intriguing in their own way this time around.
The Legend of Korra (2013) Season 2 is a solid and engaging story arc focused on establishing the fundamental link between the material and spiritual world through a good versus evil dichotomy.