Hey there, Korra Nation! As many of you know, The Legend of Korra Book 4: Balance aired its newest episode, “Remembrances” on November 21st. 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!
By now, you guys should know what a “post-cap” is. But in case you don’t, 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 8, “Remembrance”:
Makko goes down memory lane. The episode starts off with Makko prepping Prince Wu for a self-defense lesson and Wu failing miserably. During their lesson, Wu realizes he knows nothing about Makko, and when Makko dishes that he dated the Avatar, the lesson ends and a gab session on Makko’s relationships begins. Through a series of flashbacks — and the occasional commentary from Wu, Makko’s cousin Tu, and Makko’s grandma — Makko goes through the beginning of his courtship with Korra, which was halted by his feelings for Asami, and later re-kindled by the end of Season 1. Makko then went through the downfall of his relationship with Korra when (in Season 2) Korra constantly felt that he wasn’t taking “her side” in almost every situation. Makko talks about his breakup with Korra, subsequent kiss with Asami, and then pretending to be with Korra when she had a slight memory lapse and thought they were still together. Going through their second breakup, Makko tells Wu of how awkward it was for him to be around both Korra and Asami when Team Avatar went in search of the new air benders (in Season 3), but that he was totally fine with it and learned it was better to be friends than lovers. After calling Korra his “inspiration,” Wu felt inspired to do like Makko and focus on being a better person. Returning to his self-defense lesson, Wu takes a hit, falls to the floor, and whines.
Korra thinks she’s crap. Korra sits on Asami’s estate and looks out at the sunset. Asami brings her a cup of tea and notices that Korra is quite distracted. Korra tells Asami that she’s thinking over what Toph told her: The world doesn’t need the Avatar and fighting for it is pointless. Asami tells Korra not to believe it, but Korra says she does believe she’s not needed because of all the trouble she’s caused. Korra takes a trip across all her battles and failures: Having her bending taken away by Amon, opening the spirit portals, releasing the spirit Vatu, who subsequently killed the spirit Raava, cutting off Korra’s connection to her past lives, and causing Zaheer to attain air bending abilities which nearly killed her. Korra says if it wasn’t for her, the Earth Queen would be alive and Kuvira wouldn’t be reeking havoc in the Earth Kingdom.
After listening to Korra’s pity party, Asami jumps in to remind Korra all the things she succeeded in with each battle including denouncing Amon as a blood-bending fraud, turning into a giant spirit and destroying Vatu, bringing the air benders back into the world, and saving them all. Korra says that she’s made a mess of things, and Tenzin comes out of nowhere to tell Korra that she’s right — she has caused a ton of trouble, but she’s also brought balance into the world and must learn from all of her mistakes. Tenzin tells Korra that when he (and the viewing audience, obvs) first met her, she was a hot-headed, selfish chick, but not she’s a self-sacrificing, loving woman. Korra feels all the love and vows to do her best.
The Bolin-Nactuck Story. Back on the ship with the rebels, Varrick and Bolin are listening to the fugitives’ tales with Bolin feeling depressed and Varrick tuning them all out. Varrick reveals that he’s been thinking of his next mover: a Bolin biopic with Bolin acting as Nactuck (his Season 2 movie character) acting as Bolin. Varrick begins to tell a story of Bolin seeking Varrick out for a wise, handsome teacher, but Bolin interjects to say that his story begins with Korra. The rebels are bored with Bolin’s story and request Varrick to continue his elaborate mover plot.
Varrick continues his story full on with Nactuck-Bolin singing, villains Zaheer, Vatu, Amon, and Unaloq forming the “Fearsome Foursome,” Korra being trapped in the spirit world, Nactuck-Bolin dumping his tribal princess (Eska) and dating the Earth Kingdom heiress (Opal) and daring to fight the “Terror Square.” As the story goes on, Varrick says that Nactuck-Bolin gets the air bending gift of flight, assembles an air nation army to stop Zaheer, and grows into a giant to take down the fused Unaloq and Vatu, Una-Vatu. With the help of the Queen of the Fairies, destroys Una-Vatu, turning him into a mass of stars. Bolin tells Varrick that he thinks the story is trash, however, the rebels and Varrick find it entertaining, with Varrick telling Bolin, “Never let the truth get in the way of a good story kid.”
Thoughts & Theories: While this “Remembrance” episode may have been a break from the drama that’s going on this season, it did much more than that — so much more.
What a better way to prepare us for the END then remind us of everything we love about this show at the MIDDLE! Le tears… but back to what I was saying (clears throat):
On the surface, fans got a chance to relive some of the stronger plot points that happened throughout Legend of Korra franchise, including the love triangle that was Korra, Makko, and Asami, as well as Korra’s biggest flubs the Avatar. On a slightly deeper level, we got to see how Korra affected the lives of each of the characters and the world at large. Makko wanted nothing but fame until he met Korra, and after he met her, he wanted nothing but romance. But once Makko got past the love triangle with Asami and Korra, he learned that he was better suited to be Korra’s team and support system as opposed to just a boyfriend. In so doing, Makko found inspiration to be a better person, which in turn wanted Prince Wu to be a better king (though he still kinda sucks at it).
Korra went through her ups and downs as the Avatar, and essentially blamed herself for everything that went out of balance in the world. But on a deeper level, had it not been for Korra’s “failures,” the world would not have been closer to being in balance. Korra’s essentially the agitator for the “Circle of Life” in her world, though she may not see it as that. Yeah, she was quite the screw up in Season 2, however, had she not opened the portal and lost Raava, she wouldn’t have learned how to be a better Avatar relying on herself as opposed to past lives giving him constant advice. Also, everything else — the resurgence of the air nomads, death of a tyrannical queen — would not have been set in motion and things would’ve been pretty uneven. If Korra hasn’t learned it yet, it’s pretty obvious. She brings balance, no matter what — it’s her job as Avatar. There has to be a little evil for good to shine, and there’s got to be a little good for evil to be reigned in. That’s how balance works.
Hopefully, Korra’s knowledge that those in her life have become better people because her will encourage her to do what needs to be done to continue the “Circle of Life” *cue music* Naaaants een-vwen-yaaaaaaa ma-ba-gee-chi-ba-va…
Another highlight on these journeys to the past?
OK, not really, but we do get to see how Asami and Korra started out as two girls looking for Makko’s attention and ended up being two strong, independent women, who are really great friends. Asami also notes that had it not been for Korra, non-benders like herself wouldn’t have felt equal to benders. Because of Korra, Asami learned that she was just as needed as those who can manipulate the elements.
As for Varrick and Bolin? Well, when Bolin started to talk about his story, he said is began when he first met Korra — essentially saying that his life changed when Korra became a part of it. And though Varrick did nothing but show that he’s all about capitalizing off of Team Avatar’s exploits, his mover had a happy ending which is what we’re all hoping for when the franchise comes to an end.
What did you think of Legend of Korra Book 4, Chapter 8: “Remembrances”? Let’s talk about it in the comments or chat about it on Twitter.