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Avatar Extras

Promotional logo for Avatar Extras.

Avatar Extras was an event hosted by Nicktoons in which episodes of Avatar: The Last Airbender were shown along with a series of pop-up "extras", in the form of on-screen text bubbles, which gave facts and humorous comments. The extras were written by Joshua Hamilton.[1]

The information provided by this event is slightly regarded as canon, though it is hard to differentiate between what is intended to be humor and what is intended to be factual. Regardless, Avatar Extras has helped the expansion of topics and subjects that were only briefly introduced during the series by various means, such as providing official terminology as well as specifying pieces of information and the exact age of certain characters.

Below is a list comprised of trivia and information released by Avatar Extras on episodes of the first book.

List of information by episode

"The Boy in the Iceberg"

Aang in the iceberg

Aang still encased in the iceberg.

  1. The South Pole ...
  2. ... Lowest land mass in the Southern Hemisphere.
  3. Many people think toilets in the South Pole flush counter-clockwise.
  4. That's not true.
  5. ... But the seats are very cold.
  6. Average yearly temperature: -49 degrees.
  7. Fishing is the main source of food in the Southern Water Tribe.
  8. Sokka fishes with a traditional whale tooth saber.
  9. Fact: Katara is the only waterbender in the South Pole.
  10. This episode was directed by Dave Filoni.
  11. Dave Filoni also directed the final episode of season one.
  12. Sokka's ponytail is called a "warrior's wolf knot".
  13. Ice dodging is a skill learned by all Water Tribe men.
  14. In nautical terms, the left side is referred to as "port side".
  15. Sokka hasn't mastered ice dodging yet.
  16. But he will ...
  17. Watch the episode, "Bato of the Water Tribe".
  18. Sokka sarcasm in three, two, one ...
  19. Referred to as Sok-casm.
  20. Angry waterbenders have been known to "make waves".
  21. Advice: Avoid strange blue glowing things.
  22. Also, don't eat yellow snow.
  23. First time Aang appears in the entire series.
  24. If you don't count the intro.
  25. Quick Avatar lesson:
  26. ... Not every "country" is referred to as a "nation".
  27. In fact, the Fire Nation is the only one.
  28. The others are: The Earth Kingdom, the Water Tribe ... and the Air Nomads.
  29. What do you get when you cross a zebra with a seal?
  30. Zebra seals!
  31. The markings on these tiles represent each of the four elements.
  32. The four elements are an important part of the series.
  33. Not a good way to check if someone's okay.
  34. But a good way to check tires.
  35. Love at first sight.
    Team Avatar meeting

    Aang introducing himself to Sokka and Katara.

  36. Penguin sledding: Aang's idea of a great first date.
  37. Aang wears the traditional robes of airbending monks.
  38. Directing note: When revealing a new character ...
  39. First show the top of the head.
  40. Second, reveal an eyeball.
  41. Followed by the nose ... and gums.
  42. And finally.
  43. ... It's Appa!
  44. More Sok-casm.
  45. Flying bison snot: 10% water ... 3% dust particles ...
  46. ... And 87% bison mucus.
  47. Sokka's right. It's never a good idea to reveal too much to strangers.
  48. Especially ones that explode out of icebergs.
  49. An airbender's sneeze can create more propulsion than a modern day jet engine.
  50. You don't want to be around when they have a cold.
  51. Midnight sun madness: An acute mental disorder brought on by the never ending summer days of the South Pole.
  52. In the Avatar World, people learned to bend the elements by watching animals.
  53. Example: Airbenders originally learned to airbend by watching flying bison.
  54. It's been a while for Appa.
  55. Advice: If you want to win over the heart of a girl ...
  56. It's never a good idea to stare at her.
  57. Symbolism: The use of visual elements to represent an idea.
  58. The Fire Nation symbolizes the negative effects of modern industry.
  59. And Uncle symbolizes relaxation.
  60. Back-story tease.
    Southern Water Tribe village

    The Southern Water Tribe.

  61. Aang has a bad poker face.
  62. Katara doesn't play poker.
  63. Flashback time.
  64. A good flashback moves the story forward.
  65. Ironic, huh?
  66. Saltwater freezes at -1.8 degrees Celsius, or 28.8 degrees Fahrenheit.
  67. Airbenders receive their tattoos when they become masters.
  68. Americans can't get tattoos until they're 18.
  69. Or have their parent's permission.
  70. Aang is the youngest airbender to become a master.
  71. Hence the tattoos at age 12.
  72. This is the first episode with Gran Gran ... and the next episode is her last.
  73. Later, we learn about Gran Gran's romantic past with a waterbending master named Pakku.
  74. Showboating: (v) to show off.
  75. Aang is good at showboating.
  76. Sometimes.
  77. Katara's signature hair loopies ...
  78. Common in the Southern Water Tribe.
  79. Katara's chores: Clean igloo. Mop the ice. Shovel snow. Defrost dinner.
  80. Fire-jabs are the most common attack moves for firebenders.
  81. Uncle Iroh's nickname is the Dragon of the West because he can breathe fire.
  82. Sokka is the oldest male in the Southern Water Tribe.
  83. Holding in your pee can cause bladder problems.
  84. And can make you squirm.
  85. Appa's tail makes a great ski jump.
  86. Longest ski jump: 239 meters.
  87. Penguins voiced by Dee Bradley Baker.
  88. Most Avatar animals are a cross between two animals.
    Penguin sledding

    Aang and Katara penguin sledding.

  89. These are penguin-otters.
  90. Note the otter whiskers.
  91. They look similar to a mustache style called the Fu Manchu.
  92. The Fu Manchu was made popular by kung fu movies.
  93. Avatar is considered a kung fu show.
  94. Fish are the primary food source for penguins and otters.
  95. No animals were harmed in the making of this episode.
  96. Actually, Aang loves animals.
  97. Did you know that Aang is a vegetarian?
  98. In the last episode of this season, we see how Fire Nation ships end up this way.
  99. These weapons were designed after those used in ancient China.
  100. Aang just realized he's missed a hundred birthdays.
  101. That's a lot of birthday candles.
  102. This isn't the last time Aang and Katara will be behind bars.
  103. Also not the last time Aang gets everyone into trouble.
  104. Classic Zuko squint.

"The Avatar Returns"

  1. Fun fact: the first and second episodes were originally written as a one-hour event.
  2. Banishment was a popular punishment in the old days. Today, being grounded is a popular punishment. Also, no Internet.
  3. When a scene is filmed at sunset or sunrise, it's referred to as the "golden hour". It has to do with the color of the sky. In animation, scenes at sunset are referred to as the "golden drawing". Just kidding.
  4. Season One starts at the South Pole and eventually ends at the North Pole. Think of it like bookends ... or an Avatar sandwich.
  5. Airbenders' tattoos are based off the natural markings on flying bison. Except not as big.
  6. Gran Gran's disappointed face. Very similar to her normal face.
  7. Aang sleeps with his staff. It's his version of a teddy bear.
  8. Water Tribe warrior preparations include: gloves, boots, face paint, warm up jumping jacks ... will do later.
  9. Fire Nation warrior preparations include: body armor, ankle strings for decoration, shoulder pads, and to top it off: a helmet.
  10. The Fire Nation poses a serious threat to the Water Tribe. The entire village could melt if the temperature rises above the freezing point.
  11. Sokka built that watch tower.
    Sokka with war paint

    Sokka waiting for the Fire Nation attack.

  12. An "ice breaker" is a type of ship designed to travel through the ice. Zuko's ship could be called a "village breaker".
  13. Little known fact about Sokka: he's a great face painter.
  14. Avatar is a traditionally drawn 2-D cartoon, but it does use some computer graphic elements. In fact, Zuko's ship is often done with computer graphics. But not right now.
  15. This is Sokka's first time meeting Zuko. They say first impressions tell you a lot about a person.
  16. First impression about Zuko: likes pointy hats ... and is an all around bad guy.
  17. Screaming is a good way to frighten your enemy. But it doesn't work so well for a sneak attack.
  18. Sokka's trusty boomerang. Zuko prefers fire daggers.
  19. Zuko was originally going to be the love interest for Katara. She does like bad boys.
  20. Zuko hates to be called "just a teenager".
  21. "The Windmill" is a move Aang uses to deflect firebending attacks. Not so good if you're standing behind him.
  22. The Southern Water Tribe now has a port.
  23. Most great action shows have a calm moment before the final showdown. It gives the audience time to catch their breath ... and use the bathroom.
  24. Katara and Aang's relationship is explored through the series. For Aang, it's mostly just frustrating. And for Sokka, it's just fuel for his never ending jokes.
  25. Grandmas always know just what to say. And they always have candy in their purse.
  26. Appa has been listening the whole time.
  27. Little known fact about Zuko: he's an excellent gift giver.
  28. Uncle Iroh can be lazy.
  29. Little foreshadowing ... Get ready for an airbending move known as ... the "lung punch". If the impact doesn't knock you out, the bad breath most likely will.
  30. That move is called the "door opener".
  31. Appa is the closest thing the main characters have to a car. Without chrome rims.
  32. Aang is always polite.
  33. Zuko and Aang actually have more in common than they knew. For one, they're both bald, if you don't count Zuko's firebender ponytail.
  34. The air scooter can travel at speeds of over 30 miles per hour ... but they have no brakes.
  35. "Taken to the mat" is a term used in wrestling. Zuko was just taken to the mat.
    Aang conjures a water spout

    Aang forming the water vortex in the Avatar State.

  36. The windmill move - helpful for balancing.
  37. Trademarked Avatar battle music - reserved for fight sequences only.
  38. In near freezing water, the onset of hypothermia can happen in seconds. But the Avatar has a unique defense mechanism ... the Avatar State.
  39. The water vortex is a high level waterbending move. Only a true master can do it. Aang is not a master yet, but he can do the water vortex because he is in the Avatar State.
  40. Visible signs of the Avatar State include: glowing tattoos, glowing eyes, and the ability to be awesome.
  41. Passing out is an Avatar State side effect.
  42. Sokka gets his revenge
  43. Katara just invented a new move. It's called the "backward water freeze."
  44. Uncle Iroh's not sure if he's awake or dreaming?
  45. Now up: Avatar baseball ... Here's the pitch ... And the swing. Result of play: a foul fireball.
  46. Season one's hero group is almost complete ... just missing one flying lemur.
  47. Don't worry, Momo will join the group next episode.
  48. The dark clouds represent Aang's inner turmoil. The shining light represents hope.
  49. Pay attention! This sets up the entire series! Did you get all that?
  50. Elephant koi fish, coming up in 2 episodes.

"The Southern Air Temple"

  1. This episode was written by Mike Dimartino. He's one of the two show creators.
  2. Aang is tying a bison horn knot. It's essential for steering Appa.
  3. He learned it at Air Scouts.
  4. Teenagers are often tired because their bodies use up energy to grow. Of course, some are just lazy.
    Southern Air Temple outlook

    The Southern Air Temple.

  5. Ophidiophobia refers to the fear of snakes.
  6. Try to say that five times fast.
  7. Commander Zhao is voiced by Jason Isaacs. Jason Isaacs also plays a bad guy in the Harry Potter movies.
  8. Zuko and Iroh are good at a lot of things. Lying is not one of them.
  9. Note: Stomachs can't actually talk, but if they could they would speak Hungarian. That's just a joke.
  10. Airbenders live high in the mountains where the strong breeze helps their airbending. They also love the view.
  11. Appa translation: "Are we there yet?"
  12. Fact: Airbenders are nomadic. They love to travel.
  13. Fire Nation fun facts: They love the color red, they have a flair for the dramatic, and their favorite hairstyle among men: the top knot.
  14. Dramatic sequence directed by Lauren MacMullen.
  15. Close-up shots give the impression there's more going on in the character's head. They also show wrinkles.
  16. The main story of an episode is called the 'A-Story'. The A-Story almost always involves the main characters. If you haven't figured it out, this is the A-Story.
  17. This shot is similar to the shot from the opening credits.
  18. Airball rules: Using airbending, bounce the ball off of a series of posts to score a goal. Sokka's not so good at this game, but he's great at iceball.
  19. In the winter, the Southern Air Temple is almost as cold as the south pole. But the skiing is much better.
  20. That's: Monk Gyatso. Not: Monkey Otso
  21. Price of homemade airbender cakes: one silver piece each. All proceeds go to charity.
  22. Avatar Trivia: The writers almost did an episode based on the idea that Momo was the reincarnated Monk Gyatso. Other story ideas that didn't make the cut include: learning about Aang's parents, and an entire episode where Sokka and Aang are handcuffed together.
  23. All four temples are designed to harness the natural power of the wind.
  24. Before the series ends, Aang will visit all the air temples. *Spoiler alert: one of them will be inhabited ... but with who?
  25. Opening this door (the door to the Avatar statue room) also requires wind power. Sokka power won't do.
  26. Even the doorbells use air.
  27. More screenplay terminology: A separate story that parallels the A-Story is known as the B-Story.
  28. Firebending is naturally an aggressive style, like fire itself. Maybe this is why many firebenders are so "hot headed."
  29. Some of the statues are more than a thousand years old. In fact, every generation of airbenders carves a new one.
  30. Each element corresponds with a certain weather season: water = winter, earth = spring, fire = summer, air = autumn.
  31. The weather and element themes also correspond to the three television series seasons.
    Avatar statues

    The statues of the past Avatars inside the Southern Air Temple's sanctuary.

  32. As the Avatar, Aang has a bunch of super weird connections.
  33. Roku is an important figure to Aang throughout the series.
  34. The headpiece on Roku was actually given to him by Fire Lord Sozin. Neat, huh?
  35. The shushing is also making a sound.
  36. Flying lemurs were originally used by the Air Nomads as a working animal. They were trained to fetched their staffs. The creators even contemplated a shot of Momo fetching a staff in this episode, raising the question: "Who trained Momo?" But in the end, they opted against it.
  37. Aang's got mad skills. Sokka's just mad.
  38. Sarcastic laugh - key for any villain.
  39. Arrogance - also a good villain characteristic.
  40. Agni Kai gets its name from the Sanskrit word Agni- which means fire, and the word Kai, Japanese for meeting. Therefore, Agni Kai means Fire Meeting.
  41. If Aang could hear the soundtrack he'd probably know something bad was about to happen.
  42. Sokka's pretty good at saying the wrong thing at the wrong time.
  43. Evoking the power of the Avatar sends a signal all over the world. Not unlike Batman's Bat Signal.
  44. Aang is having an F-3 Avatar State vortex, with winds up to 125 miles per hour.
  45. Basics include: A good stance, and good breathing techniques.
  46. This fight foreshadows a bigger showdown between Zuko and Zhao in the season finale.
  47. Never underestimate the power of surprise.
  48. Commander Zhao is notorious for having bad balance.
  49. Zuko is a tormented character. He is always walking the line between right and wrong. It's a theme that weighs heavy on him throughout the series.
  50. Uncle is polite even when he chastises someone.
  51. Aang's vortex is now an F-4.
  52. Finding out you're the last airbender: not so good. Getting a hug from the girl you like: not so bad.
  53. In a later episode, Aang finds a way to speak to Roku on the winter solstice.
  54. Fact: Momo means peach in Japanese.

"The Warriors of Kyoshi"

  1. Meditation can be used to improve one's focus and mental health. Sometimes it doesn't work.
  2. Fans are normally used to cool people off. But, they have other uses, which we'll see later.
  3. In the writers room, Momo antics are called Momoments. Get it?
  4. Aang keeps marbles in his shirt, most likely in his navel.
  5. Kyoshi Island was actually created by Avatar Kyoshi. Really, watch season 2.
  6. Elephant koi are the biggest herbivores in Kyoshi Bay and they can leap more than 20 feet into the air.
  7. Ancient Water Tribe gesture for "out of his gourd".
  8. Koi sailing scores: 7.9 ... 6.8 ... 8.3.
  9. Synchronized koi swimming.
  10. But, the audience is not impressed.
  11. Avatar swimsuit scores: 8.5 ... 9.0 ... 9.9!
  12. Giant beast set up - will pay off later.
  13. Aang can run on water. A feat that's impossible for most people. In Season 2, we introduce an animal that can also run on water. It's called the mongoose dragon.
  14. A matriarchal society is one that places power with the females of the tribe, and really ticks off Sokka.
  15. It's the Avatar's duty to accept blame. Oyah's duty is to sound angry.
  16. Kyoshi statue: actual size.
  17. Oyah's other duty is to feed the unagi.
  18. Debut of "Foaming mouth guy". We'll see him again later in the series.
    Foaming mouth guy

    The debut of foaming mouth guy.

  19. Fact: fish merchants are notoriously gossipy.
  20. Prince Zuko is notoriously bad at sharing.
  21. Kyoshi statue restoration: 20,000 silver pieces. Bison massage: Priceless.
  22. The food guide pyramid recommends no more than 1 or 2 servings of dessert a day, and not for breakfast.
  23. Sore loser.
  24. This is the first of many times Sokka mentions sneak attacks throughout the series.
  25. Sokka doesn't know the food guide pyramid.
  26. The following sequence is based on The Beatles' film, "Hard Day's Night". Ask your grandparents.
  27. The air scooter can only last five to ten seconds in a stationary position.
  28. Fact: All painters mutter to themselves.
  29. Push-ups are an excellent way to build upper body power, or lung power.
  30. Fans were first used as weapons by Japanese samurai. They were used primarily on male, smart-alecks.
  31. It's always a good idea to stretch before any workout.
  32. Sarcasm.
  33. Sokka doesn't know it, but he's the star of his own rodeo.
  34. Sokka roping scores: 9.4 ... 9.5 ... 9.6.
  35. Don't worry, Momo is not dead.
  36. The food guide pyramid suggests 6 servings of vegetables per day.
  37. Aang enjoys Kyoshi Island for its seclusion and temperate climate.
  38. Koko is named for Kyoshi's daughter, who governed the island after her.
  39. Original members of Kiss.
  40. Suki is the first of many warriors that Sokka learns from during his journey with the Avatar.
  41. Boys wearing dresses is scientifically proven to be funny. Even the Avatar thinks so.
  42. Katara's waterbending water in a bowl. Beginners waterbending. She gets a lot better after she steals a scroll from some pirates. Watch "The Waterbending Scroll" episode.
  43. This is the first episode with Suki, but she appears in several more. She even plays an important role in the series finale.
  44. That's right, kids. Weaklings can fight too.
  45. In a later episode, we see Suki without her Kyoshi makeup. She's not easy to recognize.
  46. Small joint manipulation is illegal in most mixed-martial arts competitions.
  47. Bathroom break. The ocean is nature's toilet.
  48. Kids have short attention spans.
  49. It's common not to reveal the entire monster until act three.
  50. The Kyoshi unagi has glands that it uses to blast water at its prey. It also has tendrils for its prey to swing on, and 16 pairs of teeth.
  51. Unagi is actually a Japanese word for fresh water eel. As well as a delicious sushi dish.
    Unagi

    The unagi.

  52. Do not attempt this dive at home.
  53. Unagis have an instinctive fear of anything bigger than them.
  54. Komodo rhinos were first domesticated by the Fire Nation in the Pho Zel Dynasty.
  55. Houses on Kyoshi Island have high-pitched roofs to keep snow from collecting on them.
  56. Oyaji means 'bringer of bad news'.
  57. Fans vs. Rhinos- Who will win? Rhinos.
  58. Zuko break dances in 3 ... 2 ... 1.
  59. Dante Basco, the voice of Zuko, is a break dancer in real life. He was part of the Street Freaks Breakdancing Crew.
  60. Untrue. Little girls can do anything they put their minds to.
  61. Aang's helicoptering is used when he doesn't have room for a proper take off.
  62. Aang is starting to realize that he can't escape his destiny as the Avatar.
  63. All his fault.
  64. Spoiler alert. Not the last time Suki kisses Sokka.
  65. The creators almost ended the episode here. That would have been lame.
  66. Lesson: If you're attacked by a giant unagi, grab its tendrils like a harness!
  67. Aang is, admittedly, stupid and dangerous.
  68. Now, that's an ending.

"The King of Omashu"

Crash in Omashu

Omashu.

  1. This city Omashu is the second largest in the Earth Kingdom. Ba Sing Se is the first largest.
  2. Legend has it, Omashu was named after a man and a woman who fell in love. The woman's name was Oma and the man's name was Shu. Hence: Omashu.
  3. Wig and mustache are essential to any disguise. Just missing the sunglasses.
  4. "Whippersnapper" is an old person word. Other old person words include "Skedaddle", as in, "Hey you, skedaddle off my lawn!" and "Kerfuffle". Look it up.
  5. Omashu has an unusually high standard for their imported produce. The cabbage merchant learns this the hard way.
  6. The cabbage merchant was supposed to be a one-time character, but ended up appearing in several episodes throughout the series.
  7. Key to sneaking into places: Act like you're supposed to be there. Aang might be pushing it a bit.
  8. Earthbending guards are well known for sounding tough, and for being sticklers when it comes to etiquette.
  9. Most of Omashu runs on earthbending.
  10. Legend has it Omashu was created for the people of the Earth Nation to live in peace. It's true. Watch the episode "The Cave of Two Lovers".
  11. Omashu hasn't changed much in 100 years. Neither has Aang.
  12. What Bumi is saying is you have to think outside the box. Thinking outside the box is the theme for this episode.
  13. Signature Bumi laugh, trademarked, all rights reserved.
  14. This is the Avatar version of a roller coaster ... pre-safety laws.
    Aang and mischievous young Bumi

    Aang and young Bumi talking.

  15. Omashu's main industry is making weapons for the war. Here are some now. It's all fun and games until someone gets stabbed by a sword.
  16. Now that's acceptable produce.
  17. Terminal velocity is a physics term describing the point at which a falling object reaches its maximum speed. But, with airbending, Aang can go beyond terminal velocity.
  18. This episode was directed by Anthony Lioi. He's pretty good at directing action sequences.
  19. Many pottery artifacts can last for hundreds of years.
  20. Not that one.
  21. It's a well known fact that cats and lemurs don't get along.
  22. Weren't his cabbages destroyed at the front gate?
  23. Well, they definitely are now.
  24. A circle with a square in the middle is a common Earth Nation design. In fact, even the Earth Kingdom money uses it.
  25. Malicious destruction of cabbages is a misdemeanor in most states.
  26. Nervous yelp. Pleading stare. Just confused.
  27. This room is lit by emerald stones. The stones are a common light source used in the Earth Kingdom. They make everything appear greener than normal. But, people in the Earth Kingdom love to wear green. Go figure.
  28. Kangaroo Island is not a real Avatar location. But Duck Island is.
  29. This episode was written by John o' Bryan. Other episodes written by John o' Bryan include "The Siege of the North, Part 1" and "The Great Divide".
  30. Running with spears is the number one way to lose an eye.
  31. Fact: Iceberg lettuce offers little nutritional value.
  32. Challenges are a common device used in kung fu shows. But why do they always have to be deadly?
  33. Aang is a glass-half-full type of guy.
  34. The camera adds 10 pounds.
  35. This scene was animated as if shot through a fish-eye lens.
  36. Airbenders are well known as the loudest snorers in the world, second only to flying bison.
  37. The correct answer to this question is "It looks great!", especially if your wife asks.
  38. Airbenders are extremely light on their feet. Maybe that's why they're such good dancers. Aang shows off his dance moves in the Season 3 episode "The Headband".
  39. Fun Fact: Jennamite was named after Nickelodeon executive Jenna Luttell.
  40. A coffee mug or keychain is considered a good souvenir. A ring that encases you in stone is usually considered a bad souvenir. But it does have a nice color.
  41. Omashu has many underground caverns. But this is the only one with a waterfall.
    Bumi's first challenge

    Aang attempting to complete the first challenge.

  42. Stalagmites are formed by minerals dripping from the ceiling.
  43. Many Avatar fans consider this a "filler episode", that is, it doesn't advance the over arcing story line of the series. They're as crazy as the king.
  44. Carnival music adds kookiness factor to the king.
  45. Long eared rabbit: found throughout the Earth Kingdom. Giant goat gorillas: found only in Bumi's castle.
  46. Safety note: Never reach into unfamiliar holes in the ground.
  47. Tail wagging- a sign of happiness. Another sign of happiness: licking.
  48. The growing crystal is considered a ticking clock; it adds a sense of urgency.
  49. These two characters are loosely based on the two show creators. Some even say the characters Zuko and Aang are loosely based on the two show creators. If you saw a picture of them, you'd probably be able to guess which character goes with which creator.
  50. This isn't the last time Aang will be in the center of an earthbending arena.
  51. Initially, Bumi was supposed to have the body of a frail old man, the idea being that you don't have to have muscles to be a great earthbender, but it was decided that he looks cooler with abs.
  52. Earthbending is based on a style of kung fu called Hung Gar. Hung Gar Kung Fu uses strong stances, rooting the fighter to the ground.
  53. Next season reveals that badgermoles were actually the first earthbenders. Badger moles are naturally rooted to the ground because they are so heavy.
  54. King Bumi is often considered the best earthbender in the world. He can move boulders with just his eyebrow. It's true. Watch next season.
  55. King Bumi is a key character in the finale. He is even part of a secret society with some surprising members.
  56. King Bumi is destroying his own arena. The rules are: There are no rules.
  57. The king always has the upper hand, or in this case, the upper rock.
    Aang vs Bumi

    Aang and Bumi dueling over the fate of Katara and Sokka.

  58. The animation style for Avatar was heavily inspired by Japanese anime. The best anime balance great action with humor and emotion.
  59. Sokka's brainstorming. And Katara's being nice. There's the theme of this episode again.
  60. The king is back in comfy clothes.
  61. Here comes call back number one ... the crazy laugh is the second call back.
  62. Too much rock candy is bad for your teeth.
  63. Important info coming up in 3 ... 2 ... 1
  64. Bowing is a sign of respect.
  65. Note: The elderly should check with their physician before riding any roller coasters.

"Imprisoned"

  1. Tallest trees in the Earth Kingdom
  2. Smallest waterfall in the Earth Nation
  3. Nuts are an important source of nutrients for both humans and wildlife ...
  4. ... especially lemurs.
  5. Obviously before nutcrackers were invented.
  6. Big scary boom noise was actually caused by earthbending.
  7. Earthbending involves striking the ground with the hands or feet.
    Haru earthbending

    Haru earthbending.

  8. It adapts from Northern Shaolin, Judo, and Shaolin wrestling.
  9. So much for approaching cautiously.
  10. Aang is hiding his tattoo with his hat.
  11. Aang is also hiding his true feelings for Katara.
  12. Haru's mom is very protective of her son.
  13. Spoiler alert: She already lost someone else in their family.
  14. Not very good at acting natural.
  15. The Fire Nation is occupying several earthbending cities and extorting money from the villagers.
  16. Like coal, copper is also mined but not as valuable to the Fire Nation
  17. Earthbender skills allow them to farm hillsides and uneven terrain.
  18. Perfect meal for Appa.
  19. Totally psyched.
  20. Haru is one of many other characters that Team Avatar will meet again in the series.
  21. About to show off.
  22. This is the symbol of the Water Tribe.
  23. Spoiler alert: Katara's mother sacrificed herself to the Fire Nation in order to protect Katara.
  24. Oldest man in the Earth Nation
  25. Momo's checking out the great view.
  26. Dawn refers to the twilight before sunrise.
  27. Dreaming of Katara.
  28. Dreaming of sleeping in past dawn.
  29. Tattletale.
  30. Who needs a pump where you can just waterbend the water out?
  31. Sokka is not a bender, but this is an early hint at how his strategy skills play an important role later in the series.
  32. Butterflies can flap their wings faster than humans can blink their eyes.
  33. Butterflies also put Momo in a trance.
  34. Katara and Sokka demonstrate their poor acting skills.
  35. Katara is taking it a bit too far.
  36. This type of background - called speed lines - is an animation technique used to indicate fast motion.
  37. Katara has been forced to wear prison garb over her clothing.
  38. Totally fitting in.
  39. The Fire Nation is more technologically advanced than any other nation or tribe.
  40. But Fire Lord Ozai's passion for industry and power results in pollution, creating disharmony with the other nations and elements.
  41. The Fire Nation has several prison rigs. This one won't be the last one Team Avatar encounters.
    Prison rig

    The prison rig where Haru was detained.

  42. The prison warden is voiced by George Takei.
  43. He's most famous for his role as Mr. Sulu on Star Trek.
  44. Spoiler alert: In future episodes, the warden is proved wrong about earthbenders being unable to bend metal.
  45. Katara and Haru are the youngest prisoners on the rig.
  46. It is as bad as looks.
  47. Even though he is still a great leader, Tyro's spirit has been broken.
  48. Katara is a great motivational speaker.
  49. Unfortunately, people don't always pay attention to what she has to say.
  50. The Fire Nation lighthouse serves as a beacon for incoming ships and also keeps prisoners from trying to sneak away.
  51. Dreaming of tastier prison food.
  52. Not so easy to hide with Appa around.
  53. Actually buffalo are different from bison, although both belong to the same 'bovaidae' family.
  54. Aang realizes the Fire Nation's pollution can be used against them.
  55. Sokka's boomerang is his favorite weapon, but he gets a really cool sword in Season 3.
  56. Although Aang helps, Katara is the true hero of this episode.
  57. High enough pressure can turn a coal into a diamond.
  58. Learning how to swim is a useful skill.
  59. The warden regrets not taking lessons.
  60. Zuko's motto: Finders keepers, losers weepers.

"Winter Solstice, Part 1: The Spirit World"

  1. This is a messenger hawk - often used by the Fire Nation to courier information.
  2. Sokka is using a jaw blade to carve some wood.
  3. In the end of the season, he tries to carve a gift for a girl. It doesn't go so well.
  4. One of the many benefits of airbending is that you can express dry yourself.
  5. Fact: Sokka gets irritated easily.
  6. This story focuses on Aang realizing the weight of his Avatar responsibilities.
  7. Much of this dialogue is to remind the audience of the overall story. That's called a 'recap'.
  8. Spoiler alert: The waterbending teacher they find turns out to have an odd connection to Katara.
  9. Fact: The water in a hot spring is usually heated by the earth's interior.
  10. Uncle enjoys the simple pleasures in life, such as hot tea and hot springs.
  11. Notice the bubbles in the water.
  12. Zuko will try hard to erase that image from his memory.
  13. Katara always looks on the bright side.
  14. This is the old wanderer, played by James Shigeta.
  15. This is the Senlin Village. Most of the villagers here are farmers and traders.
  16. Apparently, most of the villagers are currently indoors.
  17. Fact: The winter solstice is the shortest day of the year.
  18. Aang gets another nickname later in the series - "Twinkle Toes."
  19. Fact: Meadow voles are native to the Earth Kingdom.
  20. Fact: They are also very cute.
  21. Earthquake or earthbenders?
    Iroh captured

    Iroh being captured by Earth Kingdom soldiers.

  22. Uncle is called the "Dragon of the West" because he has the ability to breathe fire.
  23. Spirit calling 101.
  24. Things are never that easy.
  25. Not the reaction Aang was hoping for.
  26. Scary Hei Bai roar courtesy of voice actor Dee Bradley Baker.
  27. Dee also voices Momo, Appa, and many other Avatar animals.
  28. Ouch.
  29. Sokka's boomerang to the rescue.
  30. Or not.
  31. Fact: Zuko has a hard time telling these Fire Nation soldiers apart.
  32. He's actually never seen them without their masks.
  33. Pay attention: These bear statues are a hint at what's to come.
  34. These are Earth Kingdom ostrich-horses.
  35. At least they could've given him his clothes back.
  36. Fact: Uncle can fall asleep anytime, anyplace. Even if he's tied up in shackles.
  37. Uncle's smelly shoe was dropped on purpose.
  38. Katara is holding Sokka's boomerang.
  39. The boomerang used to belong to their dad.
  40. Sokka's dad gave it to him before he went off to war.
  41. Fact: Uncle's smelly shoe was used to find him twice in the series.
  42. Fire Nation komodo rhino.
  43. Some people believe that animals can sense spirits.
  44. Whiskers on cats and dogs can act as a type of radar.
  45. Dragon whiskers are less predictable.
  46. This is Avatar Roku.
  47. Dragons were the first creature's to use firebending.
  48. Uncle can sense Spirit World creatures.
  49. This earthbender captain thinks Uncle is crazy.
  50. But Uncle is actually a lot smarter than he thinks.
  51. They don't call him Dragon of the West for nothing.
  52. Earthbenders, 0 - Naked Shackled Guy, 3
  53. This is Crescent Island, Avatar Roku's former home.
  54. This is not just a statue of Roku.
  55. Translation, "Yes, that's when you'll be able to speak with Roku."
  56. This is called rock rolling.
  57. This is called rock skiing.
  58. This is called being trapped.
  59. Which path will Zuko follow?
  60. Nice save.
    Hei Bai

    Hei Bai destroying a building.

  61. Sifu Kisu is the martial arts consultant on Avatar.
  62. He creates many of the moves that are demonstrated on Avatar.
  63. Zuko and Uncle have a complex relationship, but they make a great team.
  64. Hei Bai can take many forms. When angry, it is a frightening monster.
  65. But when content, it's a peaceful panda.
  66. Fact: Pandas have a diet that is 99 percent bamboo.
  67. Fact: Hei Bai prefers eating buildings.

"Winter Solstice, Part 2: Avatar Roku"

  1. The moon is the fifth largest natural satellite in the solar system.
  2. Appa is the only flying bison left in the entire world.
  3. Just like Aang is the last airbender.
  4. Airbenders learned airbending from the flying bison.
  5. This is why airbenders have arrow tattoos on their heads.
  6. No time for long good-byes.
  7. Zuko didn't have a sweet 16th birthday party.
  8. He hates parties.
  9. The first known telescopes were invented in the early 17th century.
  10. This is called a trebuchet.
  11. That's a stinky ball of sulfur and garbage.
  12. Correction: Stinky fireball.
  13. They smell almost as bad as Iroh's sandals.
  14. Prince Zuko was banished for speaking out against his father.
  15. Turns out he doesn't listen to his uncle either.
  16. Zuko bested Commander Zhao in an Agni-Kai duel.
  17. Zhao is still a little peeved.
    Fire Navy blockade

    The blockade Team Avatar and Zuko encountered while infiltrating the Fire Nation.

  18. Burning bison hair. Almost as stinky as the fireballs.
  19. The Pacific Ocean is the world's largest ocean, covering 65.3 million square miles.
  20. This is much scarier than any roller coaster.
  21. Avatar action fishing.
  22. Appa is exhausted.
  23. Crescent Island was once a place of sanctuary for Avatar Roku.
  24. Doctors recommend a half hour of exercise every day.
  25. Even lemurs need daily exercise.
  26. This Fire Temple is built in a pagoda style. It is the only building on the island.
  27. The floors of the sanctuary are very slippery. The Sages have to wax it every day.
  28. Sometimes Aang goes with his instinct.
  29. Sometimes his instincts are wrong.
  30. This Fire Sage is named Shyu.
  31. Shyu is the only Fire Sage who is still loyal to the Avatar.
  32. Shyu is the youngest of the Sages.
  33. Fact: Secret doors and secret passageways are fun.
  34. Dramatic Fire Nation theme music courtesy of the composers, the Track Team.
  35. Magma is molten material beneath or within the earth's crust.
  36. Lava can reach temperatures as high as 1200 Celsius.
  37. Good thing Katara and Sokka aren't wearing their winter parkas.
  38. Shyu's father was killed when he stood up for the Avatar.
  39. He was raised by the other Sages but he has never felt close to them.
  40. The Sages walk these stairs every day. They have great glutes.
  41. These columns feature dragons, they were the first creatures to bend fire.
  42. The plan man is thinking.
  43. This is Zuko's skiff.
  44. Zuko's skiff is more mobile than his larger ship.
  45. Fact: This is not the first time Uncle has shaken his head disapprovingly at Zuko.
  46. And it won't be the last time.
  47. Don't try this at home.
  48. Heroic big brother hiding behind kid sister.
  49. Not the results they were hoping for.
  50. At this moment, it's hard to believe that Aang meditates.
  51. Sokka just came up with another plan without even realizing it.
  52. Shyu's story is quite convincing.
    Shyu

    Shyu, the Fire Sage who helped Team Avatar.

  53. Momo's shadow.
  54. Five simultaneous fire blasts = Open sanctuary doors. This is similar to how the air temple doors open using airbending.
  55. Momo is highly allergic to the Fire Nation.
  56. Momo's signature attack move.
  57. The sanctuary was built to focus the power of the sun's rays during the solstices and equinoxes.
  58. In his time, Roku was the most powerful being on earth.
  59. Fire Lord Ozai is one of the most powerful firebenders in the world.
  60. The Avatar State is triggered when Aang is in an extreme physical or emotional state.
  61. The spirit of Avatar Roku can manifest itself in the natural world because of the solstice.
  62. Avatar Roku is punishing the Sages for being disloyal to him.
  63. The solstice has ended.
  64. Momo has a new hat.
  65. Courtesy of one of the Sages.
  66. Fact: Commander Zhao hates losing.
  67. This Sage misses his hat.
  68. This episode began and ended with a shot of the moon.
  69. The moon plays a central role in the season finale as well.

"The Waterbending Scroll"

Waterbending scroll

The waterbending scroll.

  1. Reveals that by the time Aang was 6, he was better at airbending than kids twice his age, and by the time he was 10, he was better than his teachers.
  2. While riding on a sky bison, you should never stand up.
  3. There are 40,480 days in 112 years.
  4. Firebending on a rocking ship is very difficult.
  5. Katara practices her waterbending every day.
  6. Aang is used to learning new bending moves easily.
  7. Advanced waterbenders can create waves of just about any size.
  8. Katara was originally going to be named Kya.
  9. Bison whistles were used by Air Nomads to herd the bison.
  10. Not all pirates wear pink lipstick.
  11. Just your average pawn shop, "Pirate Boutique".
  12. Katara just hit the jackpot.
  13. That explains all of the "free" items they have attained.
  14. Part-time Avatar. Part-time magician.
  15. Lucky for the kids, these pirates aren't the fastest runners.
  16. The spear weapons are called kwandao.
  17. They were probably stolen.
  18. This is called staff-gliding.
  19. Katara has "sticky fingers".
  20. Fact: Stealing is wrong.
  21. Zuko hates shopping.
  22. Uncle loves playing the tsungi horn.
  23. Say cheese.
  24. The "water whip" is the Water Tribe's most effective combat move.
    Water whip

    Aang performing the water whip.

  25. Some tasty nuts will make Momo feel better.
  26. Zuko's skiff.
  27. Water Tribe sleeping bags are very comfortable.
  28. Aang prefers to sleep on a mat, like the other monks.
  29. Katara's necklace is her most valuable possession.
  30. This weapon is called a meteor hammer.
  31. Spoiler alert: One day these kids become friends with Zuko.
  32. Aang's price just went up.
  33. The pirates use smoke bombs for distraction - they are sneaky like that.
  34. A bushel of apples weighs 42 lbs.
  35. Red Rover, Red Rover, send Aang right over.
  36. The pirates even trained the parrot to steal.
  37. Oops.
  38. Maybe if Momo helped push they could do it.
  39. Once again uncle is the voice of reason.
  40. Perfect timing.
  41. The highest waterfall in the world is the Canaima, that's in Venezuela.
  42. It's 3,212 ft high.
  43. Meanwhile, Momo is fighting his own battle.
  44. Appa saves the day.

"Jet"

  1. Fact: Momo loves chasing bugs.
  2. Especially jungle bugs.
  3. These are hog monkeys.
  4. The film "House of Flying Daggers" inspired the design of this forest.
  5. Appa's growl also draws attention.
  6. This argument sets up the entire episode - Sokka proving his leadership skills.
  7. Actually, Katara has met her. Sokka was kissed by Suki in the episode, "The Warriors of Kyoshi".
  8. Sokka gets even more lip action in the season finale.
  9. Spoiler alert: He smooches a princess.
  10. Hippocrates once said that, "Walking is man's best medicine."
  11. Walking is good for your brain, heart, and bones.
  12. Sokka's instincts are getting irritated.
  13. If your clothes catch on fire remember to "Stop, Drop, and Roll ..."
  14. Or ... ask Katara to put it out with waterbending.
  15. Fire Nation soldier, meet the Freedom Fighters.
  16. This is Jet, their leader.
    Jet fights

    Jet using his hook swords to take down two Fire Nation soldiers.

  17. Jet's weapons are called hook swords.
  18. Hook swords are traditionally associated with Northern styles of Chinese Martial Arts.
  19. Jet and his gang were designed by Ryu Gi Huyn.
  20. Ryu Gi is one of the animators on Avatar.
  21. Jet is an expert fighter with hook swords.
  22. The storyboard artists were instructed to make sure Jet always looked cool.
  23. Spoiler alert: Pipsqueak and The Duke make appearances in later Avatar episodes--
  24. --but they aren't teamed up with Jet.
  25. Some people think that Smellerbee is a boy, but she's actually a girl.
  26. Jet is rarely without his signature twig.
  27. Pay attention! This is important.
  28. Romantic moment in 3 ... 2 ... 1
  29. The director of this episode wanted this forest to be red to support the emotional connection between Katara and Jet.
  30. Smellerbee is voiced by Nika Futterman.
  31. The backgrounds were drawn by Bryan Konietzko and Tom Dankiewicz.
  32. The name of the nearby Earth Kingdom town is Gaipan.
  33. These color backgrounds were created by Will Weston.
  34. Tribal feast beats courtesy of the track team.
  35. The Duke is rarely seen without his helmet.
  36. The world's largest tree house is located in Alnwick, Scotland. It cost seven million dollars to build.
    Treetop

    Jet's treetop hideout.

  37. Even with all that delicious food, Sokka still isn't happy.
  38. Flirting 101.
  39. Flattery 101.
  40. By communicating with bird calls the Freedom Fighters avoid detection.
  41. Jet considers anyone who is part of the Fire Nation to be the enemy.
  42. Ironically, Jet asks a Fire Nation warrior to join the Freedom Fighters in Season 2.
  43. Do you know who?
  44. Zuko!
  45. These are called Fire Nation snaps.
  46. They are made of sulfur and flint rocks.
  47. It's hard to imagine Jet wearing that hat.
  48. Aang stole Jet's present.
  49. Perfect bed for Appa.
  50. Fact: Sleeping like this could give you a stiff neck.
  51. Rule number one in the Freedom Fighters group:
  52. Never question Jet.
  53. Fact: Jet picks a new twig every day.
  54. Jet is a master manipulator and liar.
  55. These are geysers. They're extremely rare.
  56. Half of the world's geysers are located in Yellowstone National Park.
  57. Fact: Super cool guys like Jet can convince most people to do anything.
  58. Until they see his true colors and realize he's not so cool after all.
  59. Pipsqueak is the tallest member of the Freedom Fighters.
  60. He also has the deepest voice.
  61. Remember the trap Momo was caught in?
  62. That's called a "water slap."
  63. The anime series 'Naruto' and 'Samurai Champloo' inspired these fight scenes.
  64. Jet is an excellent fighter ...
  65. ... but he's no bender.
  66. Jet is giving the signal to his fighters.
  67. This is where we see how Longshot got his nickname.
  68. Spoiler alert: In Season 2, Jet gets a chance to redeem himself to Katara--
  69. --but pays the ultimate price to do so.
  70. These drawings were done by Sueng-Hyun Oh who is a storyboard supervisor on Avatar.

"The Great Divide"

Gan Jin vs. Zhang

The Zhang and the Gan Jin bickering over who will cross the Great Divide first.

  1. This tarp is made from animal skin.
  2. The rainiest city in the world is in Tutunendo, Columbia.
  3. Tutunendo has an average rainfall of 463 inches per year.
  4. Fact: Most brothers and sisters fight as much as Katara and Sokka do.
  5. Master waterbender vs. boomerang master.
  6. Even Appa and Momo are fighting.
  7. Some of the deepest canyons in the world are located in Tibet, China.
  8. This is the first episode that mentions Ba Sing Se.
  9. Ba Sing Se is the largest city in the Avatar World.
  10. Ba Sing Se means "Great Impenetrable City."
  11. The Zhang tribe is a society of hunters and outdoorsmen.
  12. This may explain their choice of clothing.
  13. This episode introduces the idea of war refugees migrating to the Earth Kingdom capital.
  14. Bushiest mustache in the Earth Kingdom.
  15. It's the slobs versus the neat freaks.
  16. Appa has reached the maximum weight capacity for flying.
  17. Vigorous activities are not recommended after eating.
  18. The canyon guide is thinking of retiring soon.
  19. He dreams of moving to Ba Sing Se and opening his own shop.
  20. These are canyon crawlers, a mix of spider and crocodile.
  21. The canyon crawlers have a sharp sense of smell.
  22. Katara has maternal instincts.
  23. These two have confrontational instincts.
  24. These tribes haven't always been enemies.
  25. Plants are at the bottom of the food chain.
  26. Aang realizes that keeping the peace isn't as easy as he thought.
  27. Soul mates.
  28. Always remember to bring chopsticks for long journeys.
    Jin Wei

    A glorified Jin Wei.

  29. The following is an exaggerated reenactment of an event that took place over a hundred years ago.
  30. Jin Wei was not actually this handsome.
  31. And his cape didn't always blow like that in the wind.
  32. The Gan Jin tribe believed that this ritual was needed to purify the tribe's spirit connection.
  33. Wei Jin wasn't really this ugly.
  34. But his hairstyle was pretty bad.
  35. Watch out for Katara's stink eye. It's pretty dangerous.
  36. ... And they both love meat! Match made in heaven.
  37. We're about to see another exaggerated reenactment.
  38. The Zhang flashback was designed and animated to pay homage to Japanese animator Hiroyuki Imaishi's style.
  39. Hiroyuki Imashi's work can be seen on the animated TV series called "Magical Shopping Arcade Abenobashi."
  40. Some people refer to this as a bowling ball.
  41. When these two first met, Momo immediately took to Aang as if he was his master in a past life.
  42. Momo eats whatever he can get his hands on.
  43. The tribes have given Sokka and Katara one more thing to argue about.
  44. There's always two sides to every story-sometimes more.
  45. The longest finger nails in the world are 28 feet long.
  46. The Gan Jin like to fight with the straight sword. The Zhang like to fight with the two-handed crescent sword.
  47. Aang is a little cranky from not eating.
  48. Aang's favorite.
  49. What Aang doesn't know is that this custard is four weeks old.
  50. The canyon crawlers are omnivores and eat whatever they find.
  51. Their favorite food is old canyon guides who have big white mustaches.
  52. Part-time Avatar- Part-time pest controller.
    Aang solves the conflict

    The Zhang and the Gan Jin agreeing to travel together to Ba Sing Se.

  53. Here we go again.
  54. Kenji Ono, one of the storyboard artists on Avatar, came up with the idea to have a panda as the referee.
  55. Having Aang choose a panda as the referee demonstrates Aang innocence.
  56. The story has changed a bit over the years.
  57. Maybe the Gan Jin tribe can give the Zhang tribe makeovers.
  58. Fact: Making up a story about a tribe's history is wrong.
  59. Unless it brings two tribes together who have been feuding over a hundred years.

"The Storm"

  1. Dream experts believe that flying dreams mean that things are generally going good in one's life.
  2. If only Momo were that big ...
  3. 100 years ago, Monk Gyatso was Aang's mentor at the air temple.
  4. Sokka usually sleeps like a baby.
  5. At times, he also acts like a baby.
  6. Sokka's dream was most likely related to food.
  7. Bird migration is related to changes in food availability, habitat, or weather.
  8. Appa's tail is often used as an escalator.
  9. In Season Three, Aang thinks he hears Momo and Appa talk.
  10. Uncle Iroh is not actually out of his mind. Many people believe that you can smell a storm before it comes.
  11. Oops.
  12. Watermelons originated in southern Africa.
  13. China is currently the world's lagest watermelon producer.
  14. These two have been fighting for the past 40 years.
  15. The local villagers say they have a very 'stormy' marriage.
  16. Her name is not actually Woman.
  17. Most doctors and researchers believe that there is a connection between barometric pressure and joint pain.
  18. Zuko hates being wrong.
  19. Iroh wishes he had a muzzle for Lieutenant Jee right about now.
    Jee and Zuko

    Lieutenant Jee preparing to spar with Zuko.

  20. Zuko's crew has been traveling with him for two years.
  21. Noodles bring people together.
  22. ... not really the case but apparently this is what Uncle believes.
  23. Hog monkeys are just one of the many hybrid animals featured on Avatar.
  24. Aang saw no proof of trouble in the world when he ran away.
  25. At one time, these caves were used as homes by the people of the ancient Earth Kingdom.
  26. Appa already knows the entire story.
  27. Air Nomad version of rock, paper, scissors.
  28. Airbending is the most dynamic of all the bending arts.
  29. Airbenders use wind to enhance all of their normal movements.
  30. Airbenders version of school uniforms.
  31. Mini Aang.
  32. The airbending monks have a simple life which consists of eating, sleeping, and meditating.
  33. The idea of identifying Aang as the Avatar by having him choose certain toys was based on how Tibetan monks identify the Dalai Lama.
  34. The Tibetan monks would present the suspected Dalai Lama with numerous objects.
  35. If he chose the one that belonged to him in a previous life, the monks would take this as a sign that he was the reincarnated Dalai Lama.
  36. These monks were right. It wasn't long before Fire Lord Sozin started the war.
  37. This is the boiler room. Also known as the room where the soldiers come to vent about Zuko.
  38. This is one of the few times we see Zuko without his scar.
  39. In the Firelord's War Room confidential battle plans are discussed.
  40. No one is allowed to speak out of turn in the meetings.
  41. Being the star pupil in class sometimes backfires.
  42. These young monks will receive an airbending tattoo like Aang's once they become master airbenders.
  43. This young monk will have to wait a long time for his tattoo.
  44. All four nations play Pai Sho.
  45. Monk Tashi is the strictest monk.
    Tashi complaining

    Tashi complaining about Aang's lack of training to Pasang.

  46. The Fire Lord's face is not revealed until Season Three.
  47. The letter reads, "Dear Gyatso, I've stolen a bison. I'm sick of this Avatar stuff." Only joking!
  48. These clips show what happened to Aang prior to Sokka and Katara finding him frozen in the iceberg.
  49. Aang is the only surviving airbender.
  50. These Fire Nation citizens paid top price for these seats.
  51. The girl next to Iroh is Zuko's sister, Azula. This is her first appearance in an episode.
  52. Azula seems to take pleasure in Zuko's pain. Turns out she's not a very good sister.
  53. And you thought that being grounded for a week was bad punishment.
  54. These sepia slides were painted by Bryan Konietzko and Bryan Evans.
  55. They show happy memories of Zuko and his family on Ember Island.
  56. Most typhoons take place between May and November.
  57. Momo has volunteered to keep the fisherman's wife company.
  58. This is the first time that we see Iroh redirect lightning.
  59. This is a technique he invented by studying the waterbenders.
  60. The eye of storms are generally 20–40 miles in diameter.
  61. Sokka is regretting taking this job.
  62. Even if it does pay double.

"The Blue Spirit"

  1. This episode was originally called "The Red Spirit".
  2. This stronghold was built by the Fire Nation military as a troop and supply hub.
  3. The Yuyan Archers are the Fire Nation's secret weapon.
    Yuyan Archer

    The Yuyan Archers training.

  4. They are used for stealthy missions that require accuracy and precision.
  5. Some people think that Colonel Shinu has short man's complex.
  6. The Fire Nation Army often uses messenger hawks to deliver correspondence.
  7. This doesn't always work, as seen in Season 3 when a hawk encounters an assassin named "Combustion Man".
  8. This is the Blue Spirit, but we don't find out what he is called until "The Waterbending Master" episode.
  9. This city was once an important trading post.
  10. It was one of the first Earth Kingdom cities destroyed by the Fire Nation.
  11. High fevers sometimes cause hallucinations.
  12. Aang and Katara are hoping that Appa doesn't get sick too ... three words: world's biggest sneeze.
  13. Sokka got sick in the previous episode when he worked on a fishing boat.
  14. This statue is of a badgermole - the first earthbenders.
  15. Uncle is obsessed with Pai Sho and likes to say that it's "more than just a game."
  16. Later we learn that it's also a key component for a secret society called the Order of the White Lotus.
  17. Introducing nurse Momo.
  18. The movie "Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon" was used as reference for the stairs of the herbalist institute.
  19. The institute is over 100 years old.
  20. The medicine from this Institute was once sent all over the world.
  21. Miyuki was named after one of the storyboard artists on Avatar.
  22. Tea brewed from ginger root is a folk remedy for colds.
  23. The plum blossom is also called "ume", which means rain.
  24. This is because the fruit ripens during the rainy season of China and Japan.
  25. Miyuki is one of the few animals in Avatar that is not a hybrid creature.
  26. Frozen wood frogs can be found in just about any swamp in the Earth Kingdom.
  27. So far, the archers are 0 for 67.
  28. The film "Rambo" was used as a reference for this shot.
  29. The wood frogs hibernate by freezing themselves in the bottom of the swamp.
  30. Admiral Zhao was up all night celebrating his recent promotion.
  31. At least Appa provides a comfortable bed for the kids.
  32. Don't worry. The meadow vole is just sleeping.
  33. The Blue Spirit mask is a traditional Earth Kingdom opera mask.
  34. Spoiler alert: The man behind the mask is actually Zuko!
    Blue Spirit

    The Blue Spirit, Zuko's alter-ego.

  35. The Fire Nation attempted to take over Ba Sing Se once before, but failed.
  36. It was one of Uncle Iroh's last military campaigns.
  37. Matching uniforms and matching goatees.
  38. Zuko doesn't use firebending when he's the Blue Spirit because it would give away his identity.
  39. Instead Zuko uses two broadswords.
  40. Zuko trained with the broadswords during his time at sea.
  41. Don't ask questions Aang - just run.
  42. Momo has managed to find everything but water.
  43. Zhao's first day as admiral isn't really going so well.
  44. This is the Fire Nation's version of an alarm bell.
  45. Aang is going to recreate a version of his staff here - since he left it behind with Katara and Sokka.
  46. Broadswords, also called Dao, are one of the four major weapons in China.
  47. Most Chinese martial arts schools still train extensively with the Dao.
  48. Introducing ... the Avatacopter.
  49. Aang is improvising a stiltwalking act here - and it's working.
  50. A stand-off. Who will win?
  51. Turns out this mask is useful for more than just disguise.
  52. Kuzon never appears in the Avatar animated series, but Aang uses his name as an alias in "The Headband" episode.
  53. Music night is Uncle's favorite night of the week.
  54. Zuko has never participated in music night.
  55. Uncle bought the monkey statue and horn from some pirates in "The Waterbending Scroll" episode.
  56. This episode took place over the course of one, very, busy, night.
  57. Katara and Sokka tried to get rid of the frog taste in their mouths for weeks.

"The Fortuneteller"

  1. This is called the se tu fish.
  2. It's a favorite of the platypus bear.
  3. Katara's necklace was a family heirloom.
  4. She learns about its history at the end of this season.
  5. The se tu fish have been known to grow to the size of a full man.
  6. Fact: Boys never want their girl crushes to refer to them as a 'good friend'.
  7. The platypus bear is just one of the many hybrid animals on Avatar.
  8. The calm man was based on one of the security guards at Nickelodeon.
  9. Experts say that if you encounter a bear, you should hold your hands high above your head so you look like a bigger animal.
  10. If a bear continues to approach you, experts say that you should climb a tree, or drop to a fetal position, and play dead.
  11. Platypus' are one of the few mammals to lay eggs.
  12. He is the calmest man in the Earth Kingdom.
  13. There are four main methods of fortune telling that are practiced in China.
  14. These four methods are face reading, palm reading, Kau Cim and Zi Wei Dou Shu.
  15. Makapu Village has been untouched by the ongoing war because of its hidden location in the mountains.
  16. The village is located near the western coast of the Earth Kingdom.
  17. Most settlers stayed in this village because of its fertile soil from the volcano.
  18. Meng was designed by Dave Filoni who is also a director on Avatar.
    Meng and Aang

    Meng developing a crush on Aang.

  19. Meng is also voiced by Jessie Flower, who later is the voice of Toph.
  20. Aunt Wu makes the best bean curd puffs in town.
  21. Meng lost one of her front teeth last week.
  22. Aunt Wu predicted it right before it happened.
  23. Unfortunately for Meng, the tooth fairy doesn't exist in the Avatar World.
  24. Another satisfied customer.
  25. Safe prediction: Sokka will eat the entire bowl of bean curd puffs.
  26. Most people go to fortune tellers to find out about their romantic prospects.
  27. The seaweed lotion Katara uses smells horrible, but it makes your skin super soft.
  28. Many Avatar fans hoped that Aunt Wu was referring to Zuko.
  29. Sokka was hoping that there was more yummy food in his future.
  30. Fortune telling by 'throwing the bones' originated in Africa.
  31. Sokka's mad that Aunt Wu didn't see a girl in his future. He doesn't know that there isn't just one girl, but two in his future.
  32. The first he met in the episode, "The Warriors of Kyoshi" and the second he will meet in "The Siege of the North".
  33. Many people believe that clouds can depict future events.
  34. Volcanic activity involving the extrusion of rock tends to form mountains or features like mountains over a period of time.
  35. This is Aunt Wu's bodyguard.
  36. The characters in this episode were designed by Angela Mueller.
  37. Dream experts believe that if you dream about light clouds it means you have inner peace.
  38. The Yoruba, a large west African ethnic group, have the highest rate of twinning in the world.
  39. Some people in the village have nicknamed Aunt Wu, Aunt Skunk because of her hair color.
    Aunt Wu welcomes Team Avatar

    Aunt Wu.

  40. This character was designed after Justin Ridge who is one of the storyboard artists on Avatar.
  41. Unlike this character, Justin doesn't wear red shoes every day.
  42. Palm reading involves foretelling one's future through the study of the lines, shapes, wrinkles and curves on the palm.
  43. This man was told that if he didn't bathe for one year he would finally meet the love of his life.
  44. Sokka acts like an expert on girls, but he's really not.
  45. Meng has a different crush every week.
  46. She also doesn't believe in acting aloof when she's around one of her crushes.
  47. That was the first time anyone has asked Aunt Wu what they should eat for breakfast.
  48. Nutritionists say that breakfast is the most important meal of the day.
  49. Mr. Smooth.
  50. Papaya can be used as a topical application to treat cuts, rashes, stings and burns.
  51. Aang is lying here - he is a vegetarian.
  52. Panda lilies are extremely rare.
  53. The temperature of lava can reach up to 1200 degrees.
  54. Most of the people in the town repay Aunt Wu with food or favors.
  55. Aunt Wu has lived in the town for 20 years.
  56. Rain is the condensation of atmospheric water vapor into drops heavy enough to fall.
  57. When Aang says "borrow", he really means "take without asking".
  58. Meng's hair looks a little like Momo's ears.
  59. Aunt Wu has had this book since she was a young girl.
  60. Blushing is caused by adrenaline which causes your blood vessels to dilate.
  61. Aang once thought of writing, "I love you, Katara" in the sky but he chickened out at the last minute.
  62. This is Aang and Katara's version of skywriting.
    Mt. Makapu erupts

    Mt. Makapu erupting.

  63. Most letters that are created with skywriting jets are about a mile long.
  64. Poi and Ping always dress alike. The only difference between them is that only one of them can earthbend.
  65. The ash from volcanoes can almost be as dangerous as the lava itself.
  66. The ash is similar to the black snow that rained down on the Water Tribe village when the Fire Nation arrived.
  67. Wind can carry ash from volcanoes thousands of miles.
  68. Although there are no firebenders in this episode, the threat is still based on fire itself.

"Bato of the Water Tribe"

  1. This episode was written by Ian Wilcox.
  2. It's the only episode of Avatar he wrote.
  3. This weapon is called a whale's tooth scimitar.
  4. Note: Starring at it too long can cause flashback.
  5. ... See.
  6. Sokka's good at finding things ...
  7. ... Probably because he's always misplacing things.
  8. Joke telling 101:
  9. Start with a good set up ...
  10. ... And end with some tea in the face.
  11. This giant beast is known as a shirshu.
  12. It has no eyes and instead sees with its highly sensitive nose.
  13. The shirshu was almost called a blood-vark.
  14. ... Which would have been a cross between a Bloodhound and an aardvark.
  15. Aang uses special breathing techniques that can keep him warm in the coldest weather.
  16. Sokka stays warm the old fahioned way- with fire.
  17. The character of Sokka: voiced by Jack DeSena.
  18. Jack even voices the young version of Sokka.
  19. ... He's got some killer acting chops.
  20. This episode mainly focuses on Sokka.
    Bato unamused

    Bato while still bandaged.

  21. A glimpse into his past tells us what drives his character.
  22. And for once it's not food.
  23. Spoiler alert:
  24. ... Sokka and Katara will not see their dad again until the end of Season 2.
  25. ... It's a long time, but worth the wait.
  26. This abbey is located on the west coast of the Earth Kingdom—only miles away from the Mo Ce Sea.
  27. Important plot point- pay attention!
  28. Unimportant joke: Can disregard.
  29. Stewed sea prunes ingredients: 4 cups of well ripened sea prunes ...
  30. 2 tablespoons seaweed sprinkles ...
  31. And one pot of boiling water.
  32. Salt and pepper to taste.
  33. Someone who feels left out or is unwanted in social situations is often referred to as a third wheel.
  34. Right now Aang feels like a third wheel ... or in this case, a fourth wheel.
  35. Headdress used in Ice Harvest Ceremony.
  36. You should see the rest of the Ice Harvest outfit.
  37. June was designed after one of the crew members on Avatar ...
  38. She even has the same tattoos.
  39. Arm wrestling is less about strength and more about technique.
  40. Katara's necklace was last seen six episodes ago.
  41. It was made by a waterbending master named Pakku ...
  42. Seriously. Watch the final episodes of Season One to learn more.
  43. Shirshu's point of view shot.
  44. Point of view shots are often used in scary movies.
  45. Poor posture can lead to back problems in old age.
  46. Aang's ears can appear larger in emotional situations.
    Katara, Sokka and Bato

    Bato eating stewed sea prunes with Katara and Sokka.

  47. ... See.
  48. Aang's favorite seat on the ship.
  49. This is an Earth Kingdom messenger.
  50. They have one of the most difficult jobs in the Earth Kingdom Army.
  51. They often travel hundreds of miles and even through battle fronts to deliver messages.
  52. It's never a good idea to read other people's mail.
  53. In fact, it could be illegal.
  54. Obvious signs that Aang's covering something up include:
  55. ... His overacting.
  56. ... And his appetite for sea prunes.
  57. Miyuki is named after an Avatar cast member who has a special love for cats.
  58. This episode was directed by Giancarlo Volpe.
  59. Giancarlo's resume includes: King of the Hill ...
  60. ... And The Clone Wars.
  61. Ice dodging was originally a test to see if a boy was ready to become a warrior.
  62. The black rock surrounding this village was created by Aang in the previous episode.
  63. He was stopping lava from destroying the village.
  64. Uncle has a certain charm with other ladies.
  65. This isn't the last time we'll see it.
  66. The last ice dodger didn't do so well.
  67. Sailing definitions:
  68. The main sail: That's the really big sail.
  69. The jib: That's the smaller of the two sails.
  70. This sailing lesson has now concluded.
  71. A trial by fire is good way to learn certain things.
  72. ... But can also be extremely dangerous.
  73. Confidence is a key quality to any good leader.
  74. Sokka's still working on that.
    Ice dodging

    Sokka ice dodging in Bato's boat.

  75. The spirits of water play an important role in upcoming episodes.
  76. Act two complication happening in 3 ... 2 ... 1 ...
  77. Psychologists say it's best not to overreact in emotional situations.
  78. That's a good example of what not to do.
  79. Water in sacks for bending use only. Please do not drink!
  80. Nuns designed by character designer Angela Mueller.
  81. Today she's credited as Angela Mueller-Hamilton,
  82. Katara's scent is visualized by the color purple.
  83. ... Sokka's scent would probably be green.
  84. Sokka identifies with the lone wolf.
  85. ... In fact, his warrior paint is designed after a wolf.
  86. We learn more about Zuko's actual girlfriend next season.
  87. A shirshu's paralyzing tongue can stretch more than 30 feet.
  88. The nuns just fixed that door!
  89. In superhero stories it's common for the main character to do something wrong.
  90. ... But then they make up for it by saving the day.
  91. The whip doesn't hurt the shirshu's tongue skin.
  92. It's just a tool for giving commands.
  93. Showdowns between Zuko and Aang actually don't happen very often in the series.
    Katara, Sokka, and Bato hug

    Bato supporting Sokka and Katara's decision to return to Aang.

  94. This was done on purpose.
  95. ... So that when they finally did meet, it would be super awesome.
  96. By the way, super-awesome-ness happening now.
  97. But Aang is not the only one who has all the fun.
  98. We finally get to see Appa in action.
  99. Balance beam battle.
  100. Aang sticks the landing.
  101. Well timed comic relief.
  102. Iroh enjoys a nice cologne.
  103. He also has sticky fingers.
  104. As the series progresses, the writers wanted to show Aang's kung fu skills improving.

"The Deserter"

  1. Opening suspense.
  2. Number of Avatar episodes that begin at a kiosk ... 2.
  3. Number of episodes where Sokka is starving ...
  4. ... too many to count.
  5. Wanted posters designed by co-creator Bryan Konietzko. Notice the "Blue Spirit?"
  6. Wanted poster translation: Wanted. The Avatar. This fugitive knows airbending, can create whirlwinds and flee like the wind. Hunters be extremely cautious! By decree of the Fire Lord.
  7. Foreshadowing.
  8. Hooded capes are a fashionable disguise.
  9. The Fire Days Festival is a traveling festival sponsored by the Fire Nation.
  10. It travels to Fire Nation occupied territories in the Earth Kingdom ... to bring a slice of home to the Fire Nation citizens abroad.
  11. This is the first episode where our group gets to see what it's like in the Fire Nation.
  12. They learn that things are hot ...
  13. ... and that the citizens have a different view of the world.
  14. This episode took some inspiration from the book Heart of Darkness, by Joseph Conrad.
  15. Meet Malu, the firebending magician.
    Malu

    Malu, the firebending magician.

  16. He was born into a family of magicians.
  17. "Taming the Dragon" was Malu's signature illusion that made him famous.
  18. Malu has a surprising amount of back-story for being in only one episode.
  19. "Taming the Dragon" is a harmless trick.
  20. The fun is the perceived threat.
  21. Fire + air = confetti!
  22. These soldiers are not a perceived threat ... they're a real threat.
  23. Usually not a good idea to follow creepy, hooded men.
  24. But it's also not such a good idea to go to a fire festival when you're wanted by the Fire Nation.
  25. Aang bought the bison whistle in "The Waterbending Scroll" episode.
  26. Smoke bomb.
  27. Don't worry, no soldiers were injured.
  28. Chey was designed after an Avatar animator from the J.M. Studio in Korea.
  29. The character Chey was originally written as extremely crazy.
  30. But after a few re-writes his craziness was toned down ... but not all the way.
  31. Chey's wanted poster was hanging on the kiosk next to Aang's wanted poster.
  32. This episode was written by Tim Hedrick.
  33. It's the first of more than 7 episodes Tim wrote throughout the series.
  34. Sokka hates it when he's right.
  35. Lin Ye is the leader of a small tribe of primitive people who live deep in the woods of the Earth Kingdom.
  36. This tribe has little contact with the outside world and uses no modern technology.
  37. ... Which means, no toilets.
  38. Lin Ye regards Jeong Jeong as a living god.
    Jeong Jeong wanted poster

    Jeong Jeong's wanted poster.

  39. Many people regard Aang as a living god as well.
  40. But really he's just a normal 112 year old kid ... that was frozen in ice and now holds the fate of the world in his hands.
  41. Post party clean-up.
  42. This guard hopes to make a good impression ...
  43. He's up for a promotion soon.
  44. Admiral Zhao also stands to be promoted ... if he can capture the Avatar.
  45. This is how Sokka takes a power nap.
  46. Avatars are supposed to master the elements in a certain order.
  47. They start with their native element and follow the cycle of the seasons.
  48. For Aang, that means the final element he is supposed to master is fire.
  49. You could say he's trying to take an Avatar shortcut.
  50. Jeong Jeong's wanted poster was also on the kiosk next to Aang's.
  51. On the wanted poster, Jeong Jeong was much more clean cut.
  52. But you can still recognize the scar.
  53. Jeong Jeong was designed after Oh Seung Hyun, the director of animation in Korea.
  54. Firebending is considered the opposite of airbending.
  55. While airbending is a passive style, firebending is aggressive.
  56. Therefore, it's the hardest element for Aang to learn.
  57. Jeong Jeong is talking about fire right now ... but perhaps he's also talking about the Fire Nation too.
  58. Recap: Avatar Roku is Avatar Aang ... actually Aang is all Avatars.
  59. Confusing, huh?
  60. This episode mainly focuses on Aang.
  61. But there's something that Katara learns that's very important.
  62. Hint: It has to do with waterbending.
  63. Embarrassment marks.
  64. Jeong Jeong's teaching style is very different from most firebending masters.
  65. Most masters teach how to shoot fire. Jeong Jeong teaches how to restrain it.
  66. This is known as a horse stance.
  67. Breathing, not only important for firebending ...
  68. ... but also important for living.
    Aang firebends for the first time

    Aang firebending for the first time.

  69. Jeong Jeong hates to be interrupted while drinking tea.
  70. Jeong Jeong and Zhao know each other from the past.
  71. And they're about to meet again.
  72. That's just good advice.
  73. Backgrounds designed by Elsa Garagarza and Tom Dankiewicz.
  74. They add a sense of serenity and peace.
  75. And they just look cool.
  76. Trouble concentrating is a common problem for teenagers.
  77. But technically, Aang is 112.
  78. The first time we see Aang firebending.
  79. Spoiler alert: Aang doesn't firebend again until the middle of Season Three.
  80. And we're about to find out why, in 3 ... 2 ... 1 ...
  81. Sokka is a very protective older brother.
  82. Cold water helps to soothe burns.
  83. Something else that helps to soothe burns ...
  84. ... healing powers.
  85. "Burning Curse" was one of many alternate titles in contention for this episode.
  86. This episode may seem out of place for a season titled "Water."
  87. But it sets up the destructiveness of fire - exactly what Aang is trying to stop.
  88. It also sets up Aang's fear of firebending and begs the question ...
  89. ... who will teach Aang how to firebend?
  90. Firewall.
    Jeong Jeong firebends

    Jeong Jeong unleashing his legendary firebending skills.

  91. Not just a computer reference.
  92. Appa has a good stare going on.
  93. Now the student becomes the master.
  94. That's not true.
  95. Zhao is one of the reasons Jeong Jeong deserted the Fire Nation Army.
  96. One star admiral.
  97. In your face, Zhao.
  98. The "disappearing fire" is one of the highest level firebending moves.
  99. You could say Admiral Zhao and Aang were classmates.
  100. Talking to yourself is a sign of a genius.
  101. Fact: Aang is not Admiral Zhao.
  102. Aang is using Admiral Zhao's lack of self-control against him.
  103. You probably figured that out already.
  104. Riverboats, perfect for traveling any shallow waterway ...
  105. ... When they're not on fire, that is.
  106. Well not all of them.
  107. See.
  108. Classic avatar ending ...
  109. Flying away on Appa.
  110. Team Avatar meets Jeong Jeong again, but not until the end of Season 3.
  111. Healing water around hands called "watery gloves".
  112. Another classic Avatar ending ...
  113. ... Sokka telling jokes.

"The Northern Air Temple"

Northern Air Temple

The Northern Air Temple.

  1. This is the last episode before the kids make it to the North Pole.
  2. Fact: Old people loooove to tell stories.
  3. Usually the same ones over and over again.
  4. Bugs aren't as valuable as they used to be.
  5. Sky Bison Polo Championship results:
  6. The Southern Temple Winds, 3.
  7. The Northern Temple Baldies, 5.
  8. Home temple advantage helps.
  9. The Northern Air Temple was mainly used as a training grounds for young airbenders.
  10. Fact: Unlike the other elements, where only some people are benders ...
  11. ... with Air Nomads, they're all airbenders.
  12. Get ready for a fly-off.
  13. Aang's specialty.
  14. Inverted nose dive.
  15. -With a twist.
  16. This move is known as "Ghost Riding the Wall".
  17. Also referred to as "Ghostin".
  18. This awesome flying is more than just fun to watch ...
  19. ... it also sets up the end of the episode.
  20. Teo is not just another great glider ...
  21. ... he's also a comedian.
  22. Television terminology: When the audience discovers something new about the plot, it's called a reveal.
  23. Teo in a wheelchair is a reveal.
  24. This air temple is more than 1000 years old.
  25. But it's had some recent upgrades.
  26. Great episodes use plot to explore the main characters' personalities.
  27. For Sokka, we learn more about how he loves technology.
  28. And how Aang is more traditional.
  29. This episode explains the idea of change on a personal level.
  30. The airbenders' wall mural shows how airbenders learned bending from the air bison.
  31. Bison fountain just for decoration.
  32. Future episode tease: In Season Three, we see the Northern Air Temple as it was more than 100 years ago.
  33. Mechanist reveal.
    Mechanist

    The mechanist.

  34. The circle around the mechanist's eye was not supposed to be a monocle.
  35. It was supposed to be a burn mark from a steam powered telescope.
  36. But the animators accidentally drew in an eyepiece.
  37. So the writers changed the script.
  38. The mechanist is surprisingly good at guessing ages.
  39. Check out the mechanist's wooden fingers and torched eyebrows.
  40. We'll find out more about these later.
  41. The mechanist is an energetic storyteller.
  42. To add interest to static shots, directors like to use expressive character shots.
  43. Aang's robe makes a great handkerchief.
  44. The mechanist's assistant was designed after an assistant on the crew.
  45. The first time spark powder is mentioned in the series was in the episode titled "Jet".
  46. Spark powder is like gunpowder, but less kick.
  47. Kids, don't play with knives.
  48. Like all four air temples, this one was designed to harness the power of wind.
  49. But now the temple runs mostly on hot air that travels through these pipes.
  50. Designs on the floor represent wind.
  51. All four nations have their own version of an air sanctuary.
  52. You can see a glimpse of them in the season opener.
  53. The Northern Air Temple has an endless amount of tunnels and secret passages.
  54. It's a great place to play airbender hide and go seek.
  55. But you don't want to get lost.
  56. Caution. Flammable.
  57. Like the air temple, these gliders were originally used by airbenders ...
  58. ... but they've been redesigned to be used by non-airbenders.
  59. Mae Whitman voices the character of Katara.
  60. Other animated shows that Mae Whitman has starred in include ...
  61. ... Johnny Bravo, and, American Dragon: Jake Long.
  62. And now for our "Straight From the Script" section ...
  63. In this scene, the script reads ...
    Gliders

    Gliders crafted by the mechanist.

  64. Katara takes a big breath and jumps off the edge of the roof.
  65. Katara screams and Aang runs to the edge, but looking down he realizes that she is now shrieking with laughter.
  66. Swallowing bugs is Momo's favorite part about flying.
  67. This area of the temple was designed to be the launching pad for airbenders.
  68. Kind of like a runway.
  69. These designs are of a giant drill.
  70. Spoiler alert: The Fire Nation uses a giant drill in season two.
  71. In fact, they got the idea from the mechanist's designs.
  72. The smell of rotten eggs comes from bacteria breaking down.
  73. Bells are often used as a warning sign.
  74. And for this episode, it signals something ominous.
  75. Fire Nation weapons include ...
  76. Tank wheels.
  77. And a hot air balloon.
  78. The mechanist's weapons can be seen all throughout the Fire Nation.
  79. Some of them are exactly how the mechanist designed them ...
  80. Others have been improved on.
  81. Spoiler alert #2: The mechanist's hot air balloons will later be used by the Fire Nation in an important attack.
  82. This episode raises a tough moral question ...
  83. Is it okay to work for bad people in order to protect your family?
  84. As Avatar, Aang will have to face many moral questions.
  85. So this is good practice for him.
  86. War Minister Qin.
    Qin

    War Minister Qin.

  87. Well known as an impatient man.
  88. War Minister Qin oversees the creation of all Fire Nation war machines.
  89. Air slap.
  90. Air power - an important advantage in any battle.
  91. Sokka and the mechanist are very similar.
  92. Which means twice the cheesiness.
  93. Visual models help people to grasp the concepts better.
  94. It's true - the power of stink saved Team Avatar's from the shirshu in the episode, "Bato of the Water Tribe".
  95. The clam before the battle helps build the drama.
  96. The following sequence is reminiscent of old World War II films.
  97. Diving through clouds is dangerous in air combat ...
  98. ... because you lose visual contact.
  99. Aang's Ghost Riding Callback.
  100. The slime comes from the old bison fountain.
  101. These climbing chains invented by the mechanist.
  102. Fire Nation tanks were created with computer graphics.
  103. But they still require just as much work to animate.
  104. Fire Nation tanks require a minimum of three soldiers to operate.
  105. Two to drive and one to firebend.
    Explosion at Northern Air Temple

    Sokka and the mechanist using the hot air balloon's fuel source to ignite the natural gas under the Northern Air Temple.

  106. Little known fact: Bison skulls are tougher than steel.
  107. You could call them hard headed.
  108. And you didn't think rotten eggs were going to pay off!
  109. Remember earlier when Sokka said this whole place was a bomb waiting to go off?
  110. Sokka is a crack shot with his boomerang.
  111. It comes very helpful throughout the series.
  112. This area is known as the Lotus Garden.
  113. ... because it's shaped like the lotus flower.
  114. This is one of the few Avatar episodes that end on an ominous note.

"The Waterbending Master"

  1. This is a koalaotter.
  2. Did you know that only about 10% of an iceberg actually sticks out of the water?
  3. It's where we get the term: "tip of the iceberg."
  4. But these aren't normal icebergs.
  5. They're actually made by waterbenders to protect their city ...
  6. And we're about to see how they're formed.
  7. Katara's never been so happy to be attacked.
  8. As newly appointed admiral, Zhao has an endless amount of Fire Nation resources.
  9. And we'll soon see them in action.
  10. After 18 episodes, the kids make it to their destination.
  11. The symbol on the entrance represents the moon and the tides.
  12. These water chambers are designed after the Panama Canal.
  13. It helps to protect the city from unwanted ships.
  14. Unlike the Southern Water Tribe, in the Northern Water Tribe, there are waterbenders everywhere.
  15. This is a buffalo yak.
  16. Interlocking water canals inspired by the waterways in Venice, Italy.
  17. Fact: This city was built entirely by waterbending.
  18. Moon symbols can be seen throughout the city.
  19. The moon is very important to waterbenders.
  20. It comes from the fact that the moon controls the tides.
  21. These are the actual notes played in the song.
  22. "Four Seasons" lyrics by Michael DiMartino.
  23. Music by the Track Team.
  24. The chief's temple.
  25. Food for special ceremony includes ...
  26. Fish cakes ...
  27. ... lots of seaweed ...
  28. ... and one giant Northern sea crab.
  29. Meet Chief Arnook.
  30. Chief Arnook is the leader of the Northern Water Tribe.
  31. He is not a waterbender, but was trained for many years as a warrior.
  32. Master Pakku was originally going to be designed after kung fu consultant Sifu Kisu.
    Pakku, Arnook and Yue

    Princess Yue, Chief Arnook, and Master Pakku.

  33. But the writers decided to use Kisu's design for a later episode instead.
  34. Fact: The Southern Water Tribe does not have any princes or princesses.
  35. Although they didn't use Sifu Kisu for the design, they did use some of his personality to add to Pakku's character.
  36. Fun fact: Zuko is a naturally gifted tsungi horn player.
  37. Did you know that the Blue Spirit was originally going to be red?
  38. Of course it was called the Red Spirit back then.
  39. To hide his identity, Zuko does not firebend when he is the Blue Spirit.
  40. Instead, he uses broadswords to fight.
  41. There are many differences between the Souther Water Tribe and the Northern Water Tribe.
  42. For one, the Northern Water Tribe has a structured government and a status system.
  43. Water Tribe history lesson ... Many years ago, the Southern and the Northern Water Tribes were all the same people.
  44. And they lived at the North Pole together.
  45. But after some citizens were upset about the customs and rules ...
  46. ... They left for the South Pole to start their own Water Tribe.
  47. Hence, the Southern and Northern Water Tribe.
  48. History lesson over.
  49. Big jerk is only one of the many names Master Pakku has been called.
  50. Other names include, Master Meathead.
  51. ... And Master Water for Brains.
  52. Sokka trying to be suave.
  53. It's actually working.
  54. Team Avatar first ran into these pirates when Katara stole a waterbending scroll from their ship.
  55. This dummy is used to train healers.
  56. Waterbenders can heal by using their power to open a body's chi path.
    Healing

    One of the mannequins used in Yugoda's healing class.

  57. The push and pull is a reference to the moon and tides.
  58. Sea squid soup is Pakku's favorite dish.
  59. Yagoda is actually the same age as Katara's Gran Gran.
  60. Gran Gran was introduced in the first episode.
  61. In case you missed that: Kanna is Gran Gran.
  62. Katara's character was almost named Kanna.
  63. Actually there were several names in the running for her character.
  64. In the pilot, her name is Kya.
  65. Neat, huh?
  66. Iroh often plays the role of understanding father.
  67. Blasting jelly should not be used on toast.
  68. Zuko's sense of hearing is well above average.
  69. Other things he's above average at is ...
  70. Turning corners ...
  71. And being prepared for kung fu battle.
  72. This is the pirate's iguana parrot.
  73. This sequence is the last time we see Zuko's ship.
  74. Princess Yue is the only person in the Water Tribe to have white hair.
  75. We find out why later.
  76. Sokka's still working on his carving skills.
    Sokka attempting to woo Yue

    Sokka attempting to woo Yue with his fish carving.

  77. Master Poophead - another Pakku nickname.
  78. Momo always looks like he understands.
  79. Maybe it's because he never blinks.
  80. The Northern Water Tribe government is structured into warriors, healers and waterbenders.
  81. Katara's angry waterbending here is reminiscent of the first Avatar episode.
  82. But instead of breaking open an iceberg, she breaks open a jug.
  83. Where there's tea.
  84. ... There's Uncle Iroh.
  85. This scene is like a well played poker match.
  86. Both sides are bluffing and neither wants to show their hand.
  87. But who will win?
  88. Sokka makes a good coat rack.
  89. Note: trying to slap sense into someone rarely works.
  90. ... But Katara's going to give it a shot anyway.
  91. Katara is learning waterbending the hard way.
  92. So is Sokka.
  93. The kids love an underdog.
  94. Pakku is considered the best waterbender in the world.
  95. Other titles include ...
  96. ... Grumpiest waterbender in the world.
  97. This is the best waterbending Katara has ever seen.
  98. Unfortunately, she sees it a little too close.
  99. Katara's not in the best position to demand things.
  100. You didn't actually think Uncle would join sides with Zhao, did you?
    Yue's necklace

    Yue's betrothal necklace from Hahn.

  101. This salty old man turns out to have a soft spot.
  102. The director was encouraged to add the moon in the background whenever possible.
  103. The Sokka charm is hard for any girl to resist.
  104. See.
  105. A betrothal necklace is basically an engagement ring.
  106. Except not as expensive.

"The Siege of the North, Part 1"

  1. This is the first of two finale episodes.
  2. Pupil Sangok was designed after the brother of character designer, Angela Mueller.
  3. Pakku's sea sponge line is a reference to another Nickelodeon hit show, titled ...
  4. ... SpongeBob SquarePants.
  5. Ever heard of it?
  6. Katara is Pakku's star student.
  7. And she's ruining the grading curve.
  8. Snowman bending!
  9. Sokka's walking a thin line.
  10. ... Physically, and metaphorically.
  11. He's flirting with an engaged woman for crying out loud!
  12. Appa loves his seaweed.
  13. Sky bison saliva is easily washed off.
  14. But the smell stays with you for days.
  15. Sokka relationship advice time!
  16. First and foremost, be cool.
  17. Check.
  18. Make light of something amazing you do—like it's no big deal.
  19. Check.
  20. And finally, know when to say the right thing.
  21. Check.
  22. That's it for Sokka's relationship advice.
    Black snow clouds

    Sokka and Yue watching the black snow fall.

  23. Join us next time for Sokka's advice on telling cheesy jokes.
  24. The writing on Avatar is a collaborative effort between the writers (led by head writer Aaron Ehasz ...)
  25. ... And the show creators (the infamous duo, Mike and Bryan!)
  26. Everyone would add ideas and jokes to every episode.
  27. Black snow was an idea they came up with early on.
  28. Throughout the series we get glimpses into Uncle's past.
  29. But they usually only raise more questions than they answer.
  30. There was talk of doing an Avatar special about Uncle's battle at Ba Sing Se. But it didn't happen.
  31. To avoid suspicion, Zuko hangs out in the ship's boiler room.
  32. Tribal drum signals an emergency.
  33. This is not a drill.
  34. Not a good time to talk about this.
  35. Pay attention! This sets up a major moment in the next episode.
  36. Foreshadowing.
  37. Indoor waterfalls—common in waterbender households.
  38. But usually they aren't this big.
  39. Chief Arnook voiced by Jon Polito.
  40. In this shot, Chief Arnook is wearing his ceremonial outfit.
  41. Ice cliffs help protect the city.
  42. This shot was taken right from the opening credits.
  43. Time for our straight from the script segment.
  44. In this section the script reads: Suddenly, a small orange light above the ship.
  45. It grows larger and larger until ... everyone sees that it is a large, fiery projectile.
  46. Fireballs - part of the Fire Nation's first wave of attack.
    Fire Navy attacks

    Zhao's fleet beginning the Siege of the North.

  47. The Fire Nation uses trebuchets to fling the projectiles.
  48. Trebuchets were actually invented in medieval times.
  49. They use a counterbalancing system that makes it possible to toss objects over great distances.
  50. Trebuchet operators use giant hammers to launch the machine.
  51. The hammers also make good weapons.
  52. Each trebuchet one operator and one firebender to use.
  53. Meet Kukick.
  54. A highly skilled hammer thrower.
  55. Meet Appa.
  56. A highly skilled sky bison.
  57. This waterbending move requires the efforts of several waterbenders.
  58. In the season opener, we actually saw a ship in ice like this.
  59. Now we finally get to see how it came to be.
  60. This is Hahn.
  61. He was designed after a storyboard artist on the Avatar crew.
  62. These uniforms were used when the Fire Nation began the war.
  63. The Fire Nation got rid of the spiky shoulder pads.
  64. Mainly because they kept getting stuck on things.
  65. Chief Arnook is now in his warrior outfit.
  66. Note: Sideburns don't necessarily mean you have a bad temper.
  67. Elvis actually made sideburns famous.
  68. And he reportedly had a very calm demeanor.
  69. The color of the sky shows that it's late in the day.
  70. It gives a sense that the battle has been going on for a while.
    Fire Nation siege Northern Tribe

    Fire Nation forces advancing through the Northern Water Tribe's defenses.

  71. Fun fact: Waterbenders are the only benders who did not originally learn to manipulate their element from an animal.
  72. They learned waterbending from the moon.
  73. That's one exhausted bison.
  74. And this is one exhausted monk.
  75. This and other Uncle quotes can be found in the book:
  76. ... Tea Time Quotables
  77. Zuko still has the scars from an earlier explosion.
  78. "Breath of fire" is a little known firebending technique ...
  79. ... It uses breathing to keep a firebender warm in freezing conditions.
  80. Hahn is notoriously bad at remembering how to pronounce people's names.
  81. Sharpening weapons - a favorite pastime of waterbender warriors.
  82. Note: Just saying "no offense" doesn't mean you don't offend them.
  83. See?
  84. Turtle seals.
  85. Turtle seals don't grow their shells until after the first year.
  86. Turtle seals voiced by Dee Bradley Baker.
  87. In fact Dee Bradley Baker voices all the Avatar animals, including Appa and Momo.
  88. Yue is not a waterbender, but has an unusually strong connection with the moon.
  89. Keeping balance is Aang's job in the world.
  90. That's a direct quote from the episode, "The Spirit World".
  91. Spoiler alert: They're both correct.
  92. This door was originally intended for short, round people.
  93. Aang is a short, bald person.
  94. This location is called the Spirit Oasis.
    Spirit Oasis

    The Spirit Oasis.

  95. Every full moon, people leave offerings at the Spirit Oasis gate.
  96. Under the city are hundreds of underground ice caverns.
  97. These interconnected tunnels were formed after sea water eroded the ice.
  98. Sokka has officially sharpened every weapon in the armory.
  99. Zuko can hold his breath for an unusually long amount of time.
  100. Holding your breath is actually more difficult while moving.
  101. Because the body uses up more oxygen during physical activity.
  102. Aang has never been able to enter the Spirit World on purpose.
  103. Focusing on the koi fish is helping Aang concentrate.
  104. Glowing eyes can only mean one thing.
  105. Third act fight sequence.
  106. What we've all been waiting for.
  107. This pays off Katara's earlier training sequence.
  108. See. It pays to practice.
  109. The sunrise is usually a sign of hope.
  110. But in this case, it's a sign of trouble.
  111. Translation: Much of a firebender's power can be harnessed from the sun.
  112. The sun makes them stronger benders.
  113. The north tundra has some of the harshest weather conditions on the planet.

"The Siege of the North, Part 2"

  1. The koi fish are important - notice the yin/yang symbolism here?
  2. This is the Northern tundra.
  3. The treacherous terrain makes it impossible for anyone to live here.
  4. The Spirit World exists every day alongside the physical world.
  5. This odd spirit is voiced by Mark Hamill.
  6. You might know Mark Hamill from a little movie called Star Wars.
  7. It is common for Spirit World entities to take form of animals.
  8. Fact: Bending does not work in the Spirit World.
  9. The Northern tundra is constantly pelted by heavy blizzards.
  10. ... And is well known for unstable ice sheets that can give way under the slightest pressure.
  11. This episode was written by Aaron Ehasz.
  12. Aaron is credited as Head Writer on every episode in the series.
  13. The Spirit World might seem like a usual place.
  14. ... But it actually has one set of rules.
  15. The Spirit World keeps the physical world in balance.
  16. The Spirit World is a nice place to visit, but you wouldn't want to live there.
  17. Other titles for Koh the Face Stealer that didn't make the cut include ...
  18. ... Koh, the Expression Taker ...
  19. ... And Koh, the Mug Mugger.
  20. Snow depth: 3 feet.
    Zuko carries Aang

    Zuko carrying Aang through the blizzard.

  21. Visibility: 70 yards.
  22. Confusion: 100 percent.
  23. Zuko's sister becomes a major player in the next season. We saw her once before in, "The Storm".
  24. Komodo-rhinos - Great for battle, but can't handle long periods in the cold.
  25. Water cannons ...
  26. Just as powerful as any explosives.
  27. Zhao's ship is easily recognizable with the dragon design.
  28. The last we see of Hahn, Yue's fiancé in 3 ... 2 ... 1 ...
  29. Spoiler alert: In Season 2, the kids visit this very library.
  30. And let's just say it has a very unusual librarian.
  31. It was hinted early on the Uncle Iroh could actually see into the Spirit World.
  32. Welcome to the realm of Koh.
  33. Recognizable by the giant animal ...
  34. ... An unusual tree.
  35. Aang is about to face his fears.
  36. Get it? Face?
  37. This is the Temple of Koh.
  38. It's one of the oldest locations in the Spirit World ...
  39. ... And one of the scariest.
  40. In fact, most spirits wouldn't dare travel to the depths of Koh's lair.
  41. Koh's unusual movements are an attempt to get a reaction out of Aang.
  42. Baboon face taken from the animal outside.
  43. It's Koh's most recent victim.
    Aang and Koh

    Aang and Koh talking in the realm of Koh.

  44. The finale episode was directed by Dave Filoni.
  45. It's the last episode in the Avatar series that he directs.
  46. Koh is one of the most knowledgeable inhabitants of the Spirit World.
  47. But also the most dangerous.
  48. Aang can handle the faces.
  49. But almost cracks under the bad breath.
  50. Expressionless Aang just looks tired.
  51. There's some debate about whether or not this is the face of Iroh's son.
  52. Hei Bai is a spirit creature that Aang met in, "The Winter Solstice, Part 1." The Hei Bei knows all the short cuts.
  53. Fun fact: Pakku is the waterbender seen in the opening credits.
  54. Probably because he's ridiculously awesome.
  55. This move is known as the water vortex.
  56. Zhao hates snow.
  57. Panda breath - good for sending Avatars back to the physical world.
  58. This is the form Hei Bei takes when he is angry.
  59. Shooting spirit body - a lot like a shooting star.
  60. Hog tied and in a cave is never a good way to wake up.
  61. The Lung Punch - first seen in the season opener.
  62. The Worm - a dance that never really caught on.
  63. Sokka appreciates the small things.
  64. Number of times Aang has saved Zuko's life ...
  65. ... At least 2.
  66. The old adage goes: red moon at night, sailor's delight.
  67. Maybe they should change it to: red moon at night, watch out!
  68. It doesn't rhyme, but in this case, it's much more accurate.
  69. Yue has a moon headache.
  70. It's contagious.
  71. Look, dark hair.
  72. This is the only time we see Yue's mother.
  73. Zhao is especially happy now.
  74. Probably because he loves the color red so much.
  75. Zhao, the Lemur Hater.
  76. Zhao has a messed up destiny.
  77. When trying to calm someone down, it's a good idea to stay relaxed yourself.
  78. This is one of the few times we see Iroh angry.
  79. This is one of the many times we see Zhao angry.
    Zhao killing

    Zhao killing Tui, the Moon Spirit.

  80. With no moon, the color scheme becomes nearly black and white.
  81. Except when firebending.
  82. Aang's voice in the Avatar State is the voice of all Avatars.
  83. Avatar State Aang plus Spirit Oasis equals ...
  84. Trouble for the Fire Nation.
  85. This indicates the combining of the Spirit of the Avatar with the Spirit of the Ocean.
  86. Together the two form the koi fish spirit monster.
  87. Nicknamed: Koi-Zilla.
  88. The koi fish spirit monster is made entirely of light and water.
  89. This spirit monster is literally the wrath of the ocean in physical form.
  90. Retreat!
  91. Fact: This is the first time Zuko admits to being the Blue Spirit.
  92. Close combat firebending uses completely different techniques than distance fighting.
  93. Yue was always meant to help the Spirit of the Moon.
  94. Now that's a destiny.
  95. The wrath of the Ocean Spirit can only be calmed when the Moon Spirit returns.
  96. Or after it's destroyed enough Fire Nation ships.
  97. ... whichever comes first.
  98. Okay, quick recap ...
  99. Zhao destroyed the Moon Spirit.
  100. Aang combined powers with the Ocean Spirit to become an all powerful water monster.
  101. Yue gave up her life for a fish.
    Sokka kisses Yue's spirit

    Yue and Sokka kissing goodbye.

  102. Sokka is now dating the moon ...
  103. ... Or something like that.
  104. Now let's get back to something we're more familiar with.
  105. Zuko angrily firebending. Zhao being stubborn.
  106. This part of the episode is referred to as, The Tag.
  107. It helps to wrap up everything that's just happened.
  108. ... And foreshadows things to come.
  109. Zuko's meager raft sets up what life be like for him in Season Two.
  110. First time Zuko takes Uncle's advice.
  111. You can't end a good season finale without a hug.
  112. ... Or a lemur.

Goofs

  • Avatar Extras for "The Boy in the Iceberg" states that Aang's first appearance was in the opening sequence for the first episode, but in fact he did not appear in it; there was a special different introduction for the first episode.
  • Avatar Extras for "The Boy in the Iceberg" incorrectly names tiger seals, zebra seals.
  • Avatar Extras for "The Avatar Returns" claims that Zuko was originally going to be the love interest for Katara, but in "Sozin's Comet: The Final Battle" Michael and Bryan state that they never intended for Zuko and Katara to be together.
  • Avatar Extras for "The Warriors of Kyoshi" incorrectly names Oyaji, Oyah.
  • Avatar Extras erroneously labels "The Great Divide" as the first episode that mentions Ba Sing Se, but it is first mentioned in "Winter Solstice, Part 1: The Spirit World".
  • Avatar Extras for "Winter Solstice, Part 2: Avatar Roku" labels the weapon on Zuko's ship as a trebuchet when it is in fact a catapult.
  • Avatar Extras for " Winter Solstice, Part 2: Avatar Roku" states that Appa is the only flying bison left in the world. However, it was later revealed that after the end of the War, Aang discovered a whole new herd of sky bison.[2]
  • Avatar Extras for "The Deserter" mentions that firebending is the opposite of airbending, but firebending is in fact the opposite of waterbending. The opposite of airbending is earthbending.
  • Avatar Extras for "The Deserter" mistakenly spells Lin Yee's name as "Lin Ye".
  • Avatar Extras for "The Waterbending Master" incorrectly spells Yugoda's name Yagoda.
  • Avatar Extras for "The Siege of the North, Part 2" states that Yue's flashback as a baby is the only scene where Yue's mother is seen. However, she is seen again later in the flashback at the Spirit Oasis, when Yue is cured.
  • Avatar Extras for "The Siege of the North, Part 2" states at the end of the episode that when Iroh suggests Zuko rest and Zuko agrees to do so, this is the first time Zuko has taken his uncle's advice. This is wrong, however, as in the "The Southern Air Temple" when Zuko fought Zhao, Iroh told Zuko to "break his roots", which he ended up doing, resulting in his victory.

References

  1. Bryan Konietzko on the Blu-ray commentary for "The Sting".
  2. San Diego Comic-Con

See also

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