5 Things I Learned About Avatar: The Last Airbender After Reading The Two Kyoshi Novels

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Rise of Kyoshi cover

I know you like Aang and the gang. In any other case, you wouldn’t be studying this text. However how a lot do you actually love ATLA? Do you like it sufficient that you just wish to study much more concerning the universe of Avatar exterior of the 2 TV reveals—Avatar: The Last Airbender and The Legend of Korra—that we’ve already gotten? In that case, then I have the proper advice for you within the two novels, The Rise of Kyoshi and The Shadow of Kyoshi, each of that are prequels to the tales of ATLA and TLOK, and observe the occasions of just about everyone’s favourite Avatar (exterior of Aang), Avatar Kyoshi.

Now, I’m effectively conscious that not all prequels are created equal. You might have some prequels, like Higher Name Saul, that elevate the unique story. After which, you may have one thing just like the Star Wars prequels that demystify the unique story, certain, however not in a approach that you really want (like, did we actually want a complete film concerning the “Clone Wars” talked about in A New Hope?). But when we’re utilizing that scale, then the Kyoshi novels, written by F.C. Yee, are extra alongside the strains of being like Higher Name Saul than The Phantom Menace. So, now that you realize that, right here are some things that I realized about Avatar after studying each novels. Minor spoilers up forward.

Kuruk

Avatar Kuruk Was Really a Nice Avatar

Everyone hates on Avatar Kuruk, who preceded Kyoshi, however got here after Yangchen, as a result of he had such a short while as Avatar. Dying on the younger age of 33, and identified to have lived a life partying and ingesting, Avatar Kuruk is unquestionably thought of the worst Avatar evaaaaaa!

Besides he’s not horrible. In actual fact, he is one of many higher Avatars. Within the second ebook, The Shadow of Kyoshi, we study that Avatar Kuruk truly had a reasonably tragic life. An enormous plot level of The Shadow of Kyoshi is that Avatar Kuruk is attempting to get in touch with Kyoshi, however she’s having a tough time reaching him as a result of she will be able to’t stand that model of her previous life since she (very similar to the Avatar fan base) deem him to be such a failure. However by means of their encounter, we study that Avatar Kuruk is among the best Avatars ever and that he truly saved the mortal world. However no one can know that. 

I gained’t spoil why, however I’m glad that his character will get retconned in The Shadow of Kyoshi. As a result of it type of sucks that he was at all times extra of a footnote within the line of Avatars in comparison with previous Avatars like Yangchen and Roku (who was really the suckiest Avatar).

Avatar Kyoshi

So, Mud Stepping is a Factor

Firebenders can fireplace step (principally, they will run within the air off their flames). Waterbenders can mist step (just about the identical factor as fireplace stepping, however from utilizing little spouts of water). And I now know that earthbenders can mud step, which Kyoshi learns methods to do within the first ebook, The Rise of Kyoshi. Principally, mud stepping is creating nearly infinitesimal “pillars” to run on from one thing as small as pebbles, that principally makes it appear to be anyone is operating on skinny air.

I actually love this as a result of it provides one more layer to earthbending. What was actually cool in each Avatar: The Last Airbener and The Legend of Korra was that we have been launched to new subgroups of earthbending. We acquired metalbending in ATLA and lavabending in TLOK. And with the Kyoshi books, we now get mud stepping. Once more, something that expands the world of Avatar is A-OK with me.

The Kyoshi Warriors

The Flawed Avatar Has Been Picked within the Previous

There’s a option to decide (or at the very least a option to guess) which baby would be the subsequent Avatar in line. It’s a take a look at the place totally different relics are displayed from every nation, and the following Avatar, as a baby, will apparently decide the proper relics. It’s a foolproof plan, proper?

Properly, mistaken apparently. Once more, I don’t wish to spoil something in The Rise of Kyoshi, particularly because it turns into a MAJOR plot level in The Shadow of Kyoshi, nevertheless it’s one of many huge twists of Avatar lore now since these books are canon. However let’s simply say that folks don’t at all times decide the proper Avatar, and it will probably have main ramifications sooner or later.

The death of the Earth Queen

The World of Avatar Can Really Be Very Violent

I’ve been criticized previously for preferring The Legend of Korra over Avatar: The Last Airbender. It’s as a result of some folks actually hate The Legend of Korra and suppose it’s a stain on the legacy of Avatar: The Last Airbender. However I at all times a lot most well-liked the extra mature tone of TLOK. I wouldn’t say it goes anyplace past Younger Grownup territory, however it’s a bit darker than ATLA, which is extra for a Center Grade crowd.

However in the event you don’t like Korra due to its darker tone, then you definately most likely gained’t like these Kyoshi novels both, since they’re a lot darker than ATLA. Persons are legit killed, and in The Rise of Kyoshi, a brand new character named Jianzhu, who was on Kuruk’s Crew Avatar, actually buried folks alive with earthbending. And in The Shadow of Kyoshi, one other new character has their coronary heart frozen, killing them immediately. So yeah, these Kyoshi novels usually are not messing round relating to the violence.

Asami on the left, and Korra on the right

Korra Is Not the First Homosexual Avatar

One factor lots of people have been upset about in The Legend of Korra wasn’t the truth that Korra was homosexual, however extra the truth that it was type of “snuck” into the present. What I imply is, whereas there are just a few hints that Korra could be homosexual, it’s not till the final scene of the present that we discover out that Korra’s relationship with Asami was extra than simply “friendship.”

Not so with these Kyoshi novels. Whereas there have been most likely a number of homosexual Avatars over the course of the various that got here earlier than Kyoshi, this ebook makes it clear that Kyoshi is homosexual, and that she has a feminine love curiosity. And this is smart, because the spirit of the Avatar is admittedly all the identical particular person, however in a unique physique. So Korra being homosexual is nothing distinctive within the lengthy string of Avatars, however it’s cool to see that it’s lastly been made canon that there are different homosexual Avatars.

And people are simply 5 of the issues I realized about Avatar: The Last Airbender after studying these two Kyoshi novels. I’ve additionally realized quite a bit from the superb Darkish Horse Avatar comics, however I’ll save that for an additional article. So what do you suppose? Have you ever learn the 2 Kyoshi novels? If not, give them a strive. They are surely wonderful.

Have you ever learn the 2 Kyoshi novels?

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