Hey there, Korra Nation! As many of you know, The Legend of Korra Book 4: Balance aired its newest episode, “The Battle of Zaofu” on November 7th. As promised, I’ve written a recap (which can be found on Black Girl Nerds) in case you haven’t checked it out yet, but now it’s time for this week’s post-cap!
So just what is a “post-cap”? Well, it’s a make-believe term I created that by definition is mixed of thoughts, feelings, etc. that one may have after reading (in my case, writing) a recap. Hence, “post-cap”. I know I could as easily call my post-cap a “review,” but I like to do things my way. Got it? Good.
Now let’s dig into The Legend of Korra Book 4 Balance, Chapter 6, “Battle of Zaofu”:
Suyin will cut a chick. At the top of the episode, Suyin makes it abundantly clear that she’s not above killing Kuvira to “end her reign of terror.” Enlisting her ride-or-die twins, Wing & Wei, Suyin infiltrates Kuvira’s camp and using her sonar feet bending (like mother, like daughter), she and her sons locate Kuvira and seemingly enter her bunker. However, when they come face to face with their hostage, they realize that they’ve caught newly-turned traitor Zhu Li, who is acting as a decoy. Kuvira then surrounds Su and her sons, and takes them into custody.
Kuvira is a villain by the books. After capturing Su and the twins, “The Great Unifier” makes a grand announcement that Su’s broken the temporary truce, giving Kuvira just cause to march on the city unless the city’s officials (aka Baatar and/or Korra) comply to her terms completely. This is a theme that runs constant with Kuvira being a person above conquering mercilessly. She will not fully execute her plan without just cause or permission to do so. This is reiterated when Korra meets with Kuvira and tells her to back off. Kuvira responds by saying the only way she will not Zaofu by force is if Korra can fight her one-on-one and win. Either Kuvira loves to do everything with order or she just knows that she’ll get things her way.
Korra is still suffering from PTSD. Anyone could’ve told Korra she wasn’t ready to fight — myself included. During her mini battle with Kuvira, Korra was getting her butt kicked, until she went into the Avatar State and roughed Kuvira up just enough to mess up Kuvira’s hair. However, when it was time to “end” Kuvira, Korra saw her old self in the Avatar State and lost focus, ultimately losing the battle. Once again, when Kuvira was going to end the battle by “ending Korra, Opal and Jinora stepped in to saving, breaking Kuvira’s pact of fight one-on-one and giving Kuvira permission to launch a full scale attack. It’s not until Jinora does her spiritual astral projection to Ikki and Meelo, are Opal, Jinora, and Korra saved.
Varrick sees how terrible life is without Zhu Li. As a prisoner, Varrick realizes how hard life if without Zhu Li. First, he awakes from a nightmare that consists of him not getting cookies and his feet scrubbed and then when he’s forced to work on the spirit bomb without his morning tea, and no one understands him when he says “do the thing.” Several times, throughout his forced labor, he mentions Zhu Li, and though he curses her one minute (saying that her name will be synonymous with betrayal), he shows his love for her the next. As Varrick awaits death in the form of an explosion from the suicide bombs he rigged in his new lab, he says he’ll see Zhu Li “on the other side.” Though Bolin was able to save the two acting as his assistant by earth bending away from the explosion, it’s pretty apparent that Varrick loves him some Zhu Li — though he never expressed it… save to name certain measurements after her as well as his yacht.
Zhu Li has to do a thing. At the end of the episode, Baatar and Kuvira presume Varrick is dead and decide to continue the spirit bomb project on their own with Baatar running the experiment. Baatar, however, admits that he’ll need an assistant and as such, Kuvira assigns Zhu Li with the task. Zhu Li, who has worked with Varrick on said project, readily accepts.
Thoughts & Theories: I thought this was one of the more funnier episodes, made completely entertaining by Varrick’s disguised (but not) love for Zhu Li. He wakes up, and thinks of her. As he works in his lab, he thinks of her. And as Varrick is awaiting death, his last thought is of Zhu Li. Though people have told me about it in the past, I now — more than ever — think that Zhurrick is going to happen. I also think this will be made possible by the fact that I don’t think Zhu Li is 100 percent Team Kuvira. Considering that Zhu Li knows Varrick better than anyone else, I’m going to go on a limb and say that she did this whole thing to cripple Kuvira from the inside out. Knowing that Varrick would quicker blow up his bombs than work for Kuvira, she put herself where she’d be more useful — in Kuvira’s inner circle. I also don’t believe that Zhu Li is fully Team Kuvira because when Kuvira was kicking Korra’s butt, she gave a courteous clap unlike Kuvira’s enthusiastic minions, and when Suyin came to kill Kuvira, she begged for Suyin to not hurt her. A true Kuvira sympathizer would give their life for her. Zhu-Zhu, not so much.
As for the rest of the episode, it definitely backed up my theory that this show isn’t for children more so than it is for adults because before, when “ending” someone was pretty taboo, now it’s almost the norm. Zaheer “ended” the Earth Queen. Suyin “ended” P’Li. Suyin was down to “end” Kuvira. Korra was on the verge of “ending” Kuvira too, before she lost her grip, and Kuvira was about to behead Korra at the end of their battle. LoK has definitely grown up.
Speaking of the Avatar, I knew that Korra wasn’t going to win this fight against Kuvira (since all the “Big Bad” fights are the season/series finales). Korra just learned to heal herself. This girl has gone three years without really knowing her body and bringing it back up to snuff. Hopefully some time with Tenzin and Asami will help Korra get in touch with her PTSD blockage.
Also, it’s abundantly clear that Baatar Jr. has issues with being in his father’s shadow and he’s totally with Kuvira because she lets him think he has a certain level of authority, which he really doesn’t. I foresee he and Kuvira having a fallout over his family now that they’re all captured and will probably be dealt with by force. As much as Baatar dislikes his parents, him yelling at his father to yield shows that he does care a bit for their safety from Kuvira’s wrath.
My predictions? Zhu Li might be the one to sneak in and get Su and her family out of Kuvira’s imprisonment. I forsee Baatar possibly reuniting with his family and atoning for his mistrust in Kuvira. I also see a reunion for new Team Avatar now that Bolin and Varrick are presumed dead, which means that Bolin and Opal are going to have some couple time. I also see Kuvira sending her people to Republic City since it is carved out of the Earth Kingdom, and you know, she’s on a power trip (á la Azula).
What did you think of Legend of Korra Book 4, Chapter 6: “Battle of Zaofu”? Let’s talk about it in the comments or chat about it on Twitter.