Amon, born as Noatak, was the charismatic and mysterious leader of an anti-bender revolutionary group known as the Equalists. Their ultimate goal was to introduce equality for all by permanently ridding the world of benders. A nimble, agile, and stealthy fighter, Amon was fearless in facing his opponents, regardless of their powerful bending skills and abilities.
Claiming to be an innocent nonbender to whom the spirits granted the ability to remove a person's bending permanently, a power previously demonstrated only by the Avatar, Amon gained the confidence and support of many people with the same ideals. However, when the complete conquest of Republic City by the Equalists became imminent, Amon's true identity was exposed to the public by Avatar Korra. In actuality, he was a prodigious Northern Water Tribe bloodbender, son of the escaped crime boss, Yakone. Alongside his younger brother, the former councilman, Tarrlok, Amon was unknowingly shaped by Yakone to be a tool for his revenge against the Avatar.
Noatak was born in the Northern Water Tribe to Yakone and his wife, as the older brother of Tarrlok by three years. Growing up, he was a good-natured child who always looked out for his younger brother and wanted everyone to be treated fairly and equally.
When Noatak and Tarrlok both discovered they were waterbenders, Yakone trained them ruthlessly to develop their skills. When Noatak was ten, Yakone took his sons on a supposed hunting trip far from their home, where he revealed his true identity as a Republic City criminal and explained to them the power of bloodbending. Claiming that their family had the strongest line of bloodbenders in history and with the intent of making his sons bloodbenders of the highest caliber, Yakone trained them secretly during every full moon to use their bloodbending on animals, such as yaks and wolves. Reveling in his newfound power, Noatak also mastered Yakone's unique psychic bloodbending technique by the time he was fourteen. As a bloodbending prodigy, he carried the burden of all Yakone's expectations and over the years, he became cold and detached.
Eventually, Yakone ordered his sons to bloodbend each other, which Noatak did with great ease, ignoring Tarrlok's screams of pain. When Tarrlok refused to bloodbend Noatak, Yakone became angry, calling him weak, and prepared to attack him as punishment. However, Noatak defended his brother by bloodbending his own father, stating that Yakone, having been stripped of his waterbending by the Avatar, was actually the weak one. Noatak subsequently offered his brother to join him to start a new life away from Yakone, but Tarrlok declined, arguing that he was worried about their mother, thus causing Noatak to agree with his father's opinion of Tarrlok being weak. He ran off into the blizzard, prompting Yakone and Tarrlok to search for him in the following days; they eventually assumed that he had perished in the storm.
At some point in his life, Noatak discovered that he could use his bloodbending skills to strip a bender of their ability. He assumed the alias of "Amon" and became the leader of the Equalists, an organization striving to rid the world of bending. To garner sympathy and hide that he was a bender himself, Amon claimed that he was born on a small farm to a poor family of nonbenders who were being extorted by a firebender. When his father supposedly confronted the bender, he and the rest of his family were murdered and Amon's face was left scarred, forcing him to hide behind a mask ever since. He also claimed that he had been granted the power to remove bending by the spirits because they believed the Avatar had failed the world and wanted him to usher in an era of equality.
After Avatar Korra announced her official relocation to Republic City during a press conference at City Hall, Amon told his second-in-command that the Avatar's arrival would force them to accelerate their plans.
Later, at an Equalist assembly called "The Revelation", Amon revealed his plan to eradicate the world of benders, as they "had only brought suffering" and "were the cause of every war in every era". Amon rallied the sympathy of his followers with a false backstory, in which his family, all nonbenders, was extorted by a firebender and his face was left horribly scarred. He also claimed to have been chosen by the spirits to usher in a new era of balance to the world by permanently removing people's bending in order to make equality a reality.
As a demonstration of his abilities, Amon had his Equalist henchmen bring forward several captured Triple Threat Triad members, along with Bolin, and proceeded to remove their bending one by one, starting with the firebending of the notorious crime boss Lightning Bolt Zolt, whom he was able to defeat without the use of any offensive attacks. However, before he could finally purge Bolin of his earthbending, Korra orchestrated a distraction by releasing a cloud of steam into the room, allowing Mako to rescue Bolin in the resulting confusion and escape. As the brothers and Korra were riding away on Naga, tailed by several Equalists, Amon allowed them to escape, remarking that the Avatar would be the perfect individual to spread word about his powerful new ability.
Meeting Avatar Korra
Before officially meeting Korra, Amon had made a severe impression on her with his actions during the Revelation rally by unknowingly plaguing her with nightmares in which he removed her bending. After being proclaimed public enemy number one by the United Republic Council, he spread a message over the radio to his fellow Equalists, using the actions of the Council as proof of benders' oppressive nature.
After Councilman Tarrlok and Avatar Korra led a task force that successfully raided an Equalist training facility, Amon was publicly challenged by the Avatar to a midnight duel on Aang Memorial Island without the involvement of the task force or chi blockers. However, Amon did not arrive on time, nor did he come alone. Just as Korra began to leave the island, several hidden Equalists reeled her inside the island's museum, where she was quickly overpowered and incapacitated by chi blocking. Amon emerged from the shadows and revealed that he would allow her to keep her bending for the time being, stating that she would otherwise become a martyr and cause benders from every nation to rally behind her "untimely demise". However, he warned a terrified Korra that he would "save her for last" and finally "destroy her" in their inevitable showdown. With that final statement, he proceeded to knock her out and flee with his group.
Attacking the Pro-bending Arena
On the eve of the Pro-bending Championship match, Amon demanded that the Council end the hero-worship of bending athletes by shutting down the Pro-bending Arena and canceling the tournament, threatening "severe consequences" should they refuse. The Council voted to keep the arena open, which Amon revealed to be in line with his plans for the situation. At the conclusion of the championship match, he entered the arena and stripped the victors, Tahno and the rest of the White Falls Wolfbats, of their bending powers.
While his Equalists overpowered members of the Metalbending Police Force in the stands with electrified gloves, the revolutionary leader gave a speech in which he condemned benders, using the cheating of the Wolfbats as an example of their typical abusive behavior toward their fellow nonbending citizens. Furthermore, he stated that the fate of the same pro-bending team served as a warning to all benders who dared to oppose his goals.
Later in his monologue, Amon mentioned that the current tyrannical bending regime would soon be replaced with "a fair minded, Equalist" government. To this end, he planned on disposing of the bending arts in Republic City, his idealized start to eventually equalize the entire world. Declaring the revolution to have begun, he devastated the central playing field with a timed explosion before leaving the arena through the roof on an airship. Boarding the zeppelin, he narrowly escaped Korra's firebending attack and disappeared altogether.
A family reunion
Days later, Amon, accompanied by the Lieutenant and a group of Equalists, found Tarrlok in his hideout deep in the mountains surrounding Republic City. Upon being warned that it was his time to be "equalized", the Councilman defended himself by bloodbending his attackers. Although his henchmen were easily subdued by Tarrlok, Amon's skill in the practice allowed him to resist, much to the Councilman's shock. When asked what he was, referring to his ability to overcome the effects of bloodbending, Amon simply responded that he was "the solution" and proceeded to take Tarrlok's bending. He chose to handle the defeated Tarrlok on his own, as he was worried that people would find out that they were brothers.
While taking care of Tarrlok, he ordered his fellow Equalists to retrieve Korra, who was trapped inside a metal box in the basement. He warned his men not to underestimate her and ordered them to electrify the box, which would leave her knocked out when they opened it. However, as he was putting Tarrlok in the truck in which they had arrived, Korra stormed out of the cabin, having overpowered the other Equalists. Noticing Amon, she shot several ice spears in his direction; the Equalist leader evaded them all and briefly gave chase, but stopped when Korra made her escape by swiftly gliding down the snowy slopes of the mountain. When the Lieutenant and the other Equalists joined him in watching the Avatar leave, he scolded them for having underestimated her.
Attacking Republic City
Amon observed the start of the battle for Republic City from an airship floating above the metropolis. Eventually, his airship was in the vicinity of the police headquarters as Tenzin and Team Avatar were fighting the Equalists' mecha tanks. After Hiroshi Sato, who was present aboard the airship with Amon, expressed his disgust while watching his daughter fighting alongside benders, the revolutionary leader promised him that he would have his daughter back soon.
That evening, after the entire city had fallen, Amon arrived on Air Temple Island, where his followers brought a captured Lin Beifong to him. He offered her the chance to keep her bending in exchange for information regarding Korra's whereabouts, but at her defiant refusal, Amon proceeded to take away her bending.
After the original inhabitants had fled, Amon re-purposed Air Temple Island into his base of operations and had his followers bring forth all captured benders in order to strip them of their powers. He had taken residence in the tower on the island and used it as a makeshift prison for the captured Tarrlok. Having witnessed Amon leaving the island in an airship to head down toward the Pro-bending Arena for the Equalist victory rally, Mako and Korra entered the tower, where Tarrlok revealed Amon's backstory and true identity as Noatak.
With the city under his control, Amon started his victory speech at the arena by retelling his fabricated story from the Revelation rally. However, he was interrupted by Korra, who called him by his true name and outed him as a waterbender who used the illegal skill of bloodbending to take people's bending away as opposed to using a gift given to him by the spirits. Though his family tree was revealed by the Avatar, Amon remained calm and confident and refuted Korra's accusations by taking off his mask, revealing the supposed scar on his face that was bestowed upon him by a firebender. Using convincing makeup to fool the audience, Amon managed to turn the tables and make Korra out to be the liar in the eyes of his supporters. When the Avatar and Mako were about to leave, Amon urged them to stay, directing their attention to Tenzin and his children whom he had captured. Aiming to "rid the world of airbending", he invited them to come down to the stage to try and stop him. Arrogantly turning his back to the duo to face Tenzin, he was forced to jump out of the path of Mako's lightning attack. Although he was able to easily avoid Mako's fire blasts, the air swipes that the freed Tenzin threw at him proved to be too much, and he was flung off the stage.
Amon recovered quickly and went after Korra and Mako, who were acting as a diversion to let Tenzin and his family escape. He found them in one of the arena's storage rooms and subdued them easily with his bloodbending, believing that they were alone with no witnesses. However, after taking away Korra's bending, Amon realized his distraught lieutenant had witnessed the whole thing. Being denounced as a traitor by his second-in-command, Amon was forced to defend himself, using his bloodbending to easily stop the attack and send his lieutenant flying into a pile of wooden boards. The distraction provided Mako with the time that he needed to charge a lightning attack, enabling him to immobilize Amon so he could grab a severely weakened Korra to escape. However, Amon caught up with them quickly and again used his bloodbending to effectively halt them.
He prepared to take away Mako's bending, musing over the fact that no one else had been able to get the better of him, and that it was almost a shame to take bending away from one so talented. With his attention drawn away from the downed and seemingly powerless Korra, Amon was completely caught off-guard when she, seeing Mako in danger, suddenly unlocked her airbending and used it to knock him away from the firebender. As she unleashed a barrage of air attacks upon him, flinging him through the hallway, he briefly regained the upper hand with bloodbending. Korra, however, managed to break his hold on her, blasting him out of a window into the harbor below with an air kick, where he began sinking rapidly into the sea after losing consciousness.
Unaware that the water had washed his fake scar away, he regained consciousness underwater and instinctively used his waterbending to emerge from the sea on a giant waterspout to avoid drowning, exposing his waterbending abilities to his followers that were outside. Realizing he had lost all of his leverage and followers, he made his escape, dropping back into the water to avoid Mako's barrage of fire blasts. He managed to make his way back to Air Temple Island, where he released Tarrlok, expressing regret for what he had done to him and once more offering his younger brother a chance to leave with him so they could start a new life together, as he was all he had left in the world.
The two brothers acquired a speedboat and made their way out of Republic City, journeying across the Mo Ce Sea. Amon expressed his joy of being together with family again, though admitted he had almost forgotten the sound of the name he was born with and knew when he still had a loving family. As he drove the boat, the defeated revolutionary shed a tear upon hearing his brother assure him it would be like the old days, right before Tarrlok used one of the many electrified gloves kept in the boat to ignite its fuel tank, wanting to bring an end to what he referred to as their sad story. The resulting explosion formed a large mushroom cloud, visible from afar, killing them both.
When Korra was administered a poison by the Red Lotus that would force her to enter the Avatar State, Amon appeared to her in a hallucination, telling her that the world did not need her anymore. Emphasizing the futility of her resistance, he urged her, together with hallucinations of Unalaq and Vaatu, to let go and enter the Avatar State. He appeared to Korra again in a swamp-induced vision, in which she witnessed the Equalist leader removing her bending.
Amon was later used by Varrick in his story of Bolin, Hero of the World, in which he was described as a zombie. He was added to the conference call Zaheer was having with Vaatu and although he expressed his willingness to help take out their common nemesis, Bolin, deeming him to be "way too powerful and awesome", he wanted to leave Unalaq out of the team, though soon found out the Chief of the North had been listening in on their conversation. Amon and his two other companions tried to get rid of Unalaq and eventually just hung up on him. Amon's plot line was ignored in the rest of the mover script.
Noatak was once a caring boy who strove to protect his younger brother. However, having been corrupted by the use of bloodbending at a young age and having to endure the burden of all of Yakone's expectations due to his prowess, Amon became a calm and composed individual, more cold and detached from the world. He developed some sociopathic aspects and a desire for power, fueled by his intent for equality among everyone. Amon had somewhat idolized Avatar Aang's ability to remove an individual's bending, believing that skill to be more powerful than bloodbending. In time, Amon had eventually devised his own technique to remove one's bending by utilizing his bloodbending to sever the bender's connection with their bending ability.
Amon had a severe abhorrence toward benders and was a staunch believer in what he viewed as equality, affectionately referring to his followers as "brothers and sisters". Amon sincerely believed in his rhetoric, having striven to be fair and treat everyone equally since he was a child. Ultimately, it was a misguided desire for justice as well as latent lust for power that led him to start the Anti-bending Revolution.
He was clever and composed, as well as a convincing orator. He had a high command of the art of public speaking, knowing how to mystify and terrify his audiences and enemies alike, inspiring loyalty with each word and gaining widespread following for his cause. At the beginning of the revolution, he seemed to have plans for Korra and avoided fighting her, resorting to allowing her to escape and spread word of his abilities to the city. Amon also chose not to take away her bending when he ambushed her after refusing to fight her, foreseeing that it would make her a martyr for benders and unite them globally against his cause. His proactive and logical thinking typically put him "one step ahead".
Amon was a calculating and manipulative individual; his schemes were well planned and executed with great efficiency. He was also cautious, as he avoided direct conflict with benders, especially those with great power such as Korra, knowing that he risked exposure in facing them. He displayed utter fearlessness, which was exhibited when he was nearly blasted by Korra's firebending, overcoming Tarrlok's bloodbending, and chasing after Korra following her escape from Tarrlok's hideout. To support his pseudo backstory of a firebender scarring his face, Amon used makeup to make it appear that he had actually been scarred.
He was a strong-willed individual in possession of a high level of self-control, making him an extremely formidable opponent. His calm composure never wavered; when Korra escaped her prison and fired large missiles of ice at him, Amon did not hesitate to chase after her, but he remained composed when he lightly scolded his subordinates for underestimating her, which he had warned against. Mortal danger and his strong instinct to survive caused him to slip up once, revealing his true self. However, even in a distraught state, he regained his composure rather quickly, successfully enabling him to escape.
Drilled relentlessly by his father in waterbending, Amon displayed a natural talent for waterbending, quickly impressing Yakone and ultimately mastering the art under his father's tutelage. A true prodigy, his mastery of the art was immense; he was capable of launching himself out of a body of water on a gigantic waterspout and propelling himself over the surface at a speed exceeding that of Mako's fire blasts.
Amon just as quickly mastered the rare and outlawed art of bloodbending, becoming exceptionally skilled and powerful at the ability. Under Yakone's tutelage, he mastered the technique to such an extent that he could perform it at anytime, without the aid of a full moon, by the age of fourteen. At the same time, he also learned his father's special skill of psychic bending, allowing him to perform his bending skills not only through physical movement, but also through sheer focus and strength of will. As the son of the infamous bloodbending criminal Yakone, Amon was also able to use more common bloodbending techniques, such as body manipulation and torture, to an extremely powerful degree while exerting minimal effort. He could also levitate his targets, throw them around, subdue them, and knock them unconscious. With his skill in psychic bending, he could also bloodbend one or multiple targets into submission while able to freely move in for other measures to finish his opponent. Additionally, he exhibited the ability to resist bloodbending with little effort, even against his brother, Tarrlok, who had also mastered the skill to a similar level.
Despite growing fascinated by this skill, he ultimately desired more, wanting to have the power to remove people's bending, just as Avatar Aang had done to his father with the use of energybending. He eventually succeeded in this goal by using his mastery of bloodbending to "sever" an individual's bending connection by blocking their active chi paths, effectively achieving the same result as energybending. No medical intervention was effective in reversing this effect, and even Katara, a world-renowned healer and bloodbending expert in her own right, was unable to reverse its effects. The only known way to reverse Amon's bending-block is through the use of energybending, as demonstrated by Avatars Aang and Korra.
Amon epitomized versatility in many ways. He concealed his bending abilities through masterful hand-to-hand combat skills and the art of chi blocking. His prowess proved great enough to defeat even the most powerful of benders. He also demonstrated his agility as a nimble fighter, allowing him to maneuver gracefully and evade bending assaults with ease, even at close-range. He also supplemented his hand-to-hand skills with minor applications of his bloodbending in order to better defend and redirect enemy assaults. Apart from his combat skills, Amon had extreme physical resilience that allowed him to recover from a point-blank lightning bolt shot by Mako in mere seconds and subdue him with bloodbending.
Aside from his combat abilities, Amon also possessed great intellect and charisma, making him a master manipulator. He effectively masqueraded his bloodbending technique, which he used to sever people's bending, as a mystical weapon given to him by the spirits. He was able to maintain this facade consistently even under the heat of battle. A gifted political strategist, he accurately portended that if he removed the Avatar's bending too early in his revolution, it would only end in Korra becoming a martyr, ensuring that benders across the globe would unite against his anti-bending agenda. He took his charade to such heights that apart from wearing a mask, he even applied make-up to fake a large facial scar to legitimize his fabricated story of being mutilated by a firebender in order to further drive bending hate and sympathy for his cause.
As evidenced by the multiple attacks orchestrated by the Equalists, Amon was also a capable strategist and tactician, outmatching other organized forces such as the Metalbending Police Force and the United Forces armada on several occasions. He was also well-versed in terrorist tactics, subverting nonbenders by manipulating their hate and bestowing fear upon benders, always seeking a psychological edge against his opponents, and consistently using intimidation and threats against his numerous enemies.
- Main article: Amon's relationships
- Amon's ability is called in the art of , which is roughly translated into "the death hand", referring to an individual who is skilled in killing but not curing.
- The ideogram, present on his early character designs, has several meanings in Chinese, including "to equalize", matching the Equalists' name, and "peaceful", matching Amon's goals for a peaceful world that is rid of bending. In Indonesian, "peaceful" translates to "Aman", pronounced as "Amon".
- The red disc featured on Amon's mask was also the symbol of the Egyptian sun god Amun, whose name can similarly be spelled as Amon.
- The Chinese transliteration for Amon's name, , has several meanings, but the most appropriate is "to cover".
- The mask that Amon wore was inspired by traditional Chinese and Korean designs.
- Amon was the only known person who was not an Avatar to have had the ability to remove someone's bending.
- He, along with Tarrlok, were the first two people to die on-screen in The Legend of Korra.
- Amon is the only character known to be both a bender and a chi blocker.
- As a child, Amon had a darker skin color that was similar to Katara's, but as an adult, his skin was noticeably lighter.
- The creators did not realize until the animation came back for "Skeletons in the Closet" that fourteen year old Amon had been drawn with the same hairstyle as Korra. They ultimately decided to leave the style as it was, as it showed that despite their differences during the Anti-bending Revolution, they came from similar cultural backgrounds.
- In Binsfeld's classification of demons, Amon is the name of one of the seven princes of Hell, who tempts people with the sin of wrath. This is similar to how Amon roused the frustration and hatred of the nonbending populace to further his goals.
- The Anonymous group, an internet movement or concept of anonymous activists who protest political injustice, often uses a Guy Fawkes mask as a symbol for the movement and as a disguise, which is similar to the mask Amon used. Amon sounds similar to "Anon", which is used as an abbreviation for "Anonymous".
- Amon bore similarities to the character "V" from the movie V for Vendetta. Much like Amon, V was portrayed as a mysterious anarchist, vigilante, and freedom fighter who was easily recognizable by his Guy Fawkes mask, and dark clothing. According to Alan Moore, one of the character's creators, V was designed to be morally ambiguous, similar to how Amon was perceived as a hero by some and a tyrant by others.
- Despite having been killed at the end of Book One: Air, Amon appeared to Korra in a vision in every subsequent book, making appearances in the final episodes of Books Two and Three and again in the fourth and eighth episode of Book Four; however, he only spoke in the Book Three finale and Book Four recap episode.
- Amon was the second known individual in the Avatar universe to die at the hands of a family member, the first being Azulon and the third Unalaq.