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Avatar Extras (Book Two: Earth)

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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 second book.

List of information by episode

"The Avatar State"

  1. This is the first episode of the second season, referred to as Book Two: Earth.
  2. Book Two takes place in the spring ... and generally focuses on earthbending.
  3. Although this episode focuses more on the "Avatar State".
  4. Recap: glowing eyes + glowing tattoos = Avatar State.
  5. This episode was written by four writers, the most writers on any single Avatar episode.
    Spirit water vial

    Pakku giving Katara an amulet filled with spirit water as a parting gift.

  6. Spoiler alert: Amulet won't be seen again until the end of the season.
  7. Check out sleeveless Sokka!
  8. His outfit was redesigned to show off his "guns".
  9. Avatar 101: Each element is related to a season.
  10. The element earth is related to spring.
  11. Signs of spring include: cherry blossoms blooming ... and topless Uncle.
  12. Ew.
  13. Avatar trivia: this resort used to be a retreat for Earth Kingdom monks.
  14. It's located on top of the Su Oku River.
  15. Azula's ship is the pride of the Fire Nation.
  16. In contrast to Zuko's ship, it's bigger, faster, newer, cleaner ... and more technologically advanced-er.
  17. Meet Azula—the favorite child of the Fire Lord.
  18. TV terminology: "sides" are pages written to audition actors.
  19. ... often sides are written before the script and are never meant to be part of the show.
  20. The following dialogue originated as sides, but it was so good, they went ahead and put it in the show.
  21. That dialogue was written by Tim Hedrick.
  22. Riding on Appa = sore backsides.
  23. Fun fact: Earthbenders don't wear shoes.
  24. Bare feet give them a better connection to the earth and improves their earthbending.
  25. Unfortunately, bare feet is the number one cause of "Turf Toe".
  26. This is General Fong. He is considered one of the most aggressive generals in the army.
    General Fong's fortress

    General Fong's fortress.

  27. He's also very direct.
  28. Duh!
  29. Avatar recap: So far Aang has mastered 2 out of the 4 elements.
  30. Okay, so he hasn't completely mastered waterbending yet.
  31. ... but still, mastering one and a half out of four isn't bad!
  32. Fact: The Avatar State kept Aang alive in an iceberg for 100 years.
  33. The Avatar State is a destructive power ... and one that Aang feels guilty about.
  34. General Fong could have been a great salesman.
  35. Princess Azula is a firebending prodigy.
  36. She is one of the few firebenders who can create and bend lightning.
  37. Lo and Li are Azula's Sifus since childhood.
  38. A Sifu is a kung fu teacher.
  39. These two Sifus have many years of experience.
  40. General Fong is a workaholic.
  41. Avatar 101: Aang's plan was to master all four elements and become a fully realized Avatar before facing the Fire Lord.
  42. Sokka makes a good point.
  43. "Glow it up" - a term that never really caught on.
  44. Do not drink chi-tea if trying to go to sleep.
  45. It will give you weird dreams!
  46. Note: Talking someone to death rarely works.
  47. Have you ever wondered what Momo's head looks like on Sokka's body?
  48. This duo referred to as Mo-Mokka.
  49. Every Earth Kingdom base has a shaman who has a special connection to the earth and the spirits.
  50. Unfortunately, he doesn't know much about the Avatar State.
  51. Fact: Warm mud is good for the skin.
  52. Shell collecting—one of Iroh's many unusual hobbies.
  53. Zuko and Azula take sibling rivalry to a whole new level.
  54. This is the first Azula/Zuko interaction in the series.
  55. The two are very different in personality and fighting styles.
  56. Azula is calculating, precise and stealthy ...
  57. ... Zuko is emotional, aggressive and angry.
  58. Recap: Three years ago, Zuko was banished from the Fire Nation by his own father.
  59. So yeah, this is big news.
    Zuko and Azula

    Azula lying to Zuko to bring him home.

  60. Caution: Sunsets often lead to emotional outpouring.
  61. Told you.
  62. Fact: Being the Avatar ain't easy.
  63. Thankfully, he gets help working out his Avatar-sized problems at the end of Book Two.
  64. ... Watch the episode titled, "The Guru".
  65. It's a rare happy moment for Zuko ...
  66. ... And a rare angry moment for Uncle Iroh.
  67. There's the Zuko we remember.
  68. Dream sequence based on actual events from the second episode.
  69. It represents Aang's fear of his uncontrollable side taking over.
  70. ... Or something like that.
  71. Little known fact: Sokka is extremely agreeable late at night.
  72. We'll see this shot again later.
  73. Skeptical Uncle.
  74. This room is known as the map room.
  75. It's a great place to plan invasions ...
  76. ... And a great place to attack Avatars.
  77. Here comes the "act break".
  78. That's called an earthbending shockwave.
  79. Large round weapons designed after Earth Kingdom coins ... but have no cash value.
  80. The weapons are unique to the Earth Kingdom.
  81. Classic Aang evasive move ... airball-to-wall run.
  82. Works every time.
  83. The guards on Azula's ship wear unique helmets.
  84. It identifies them as part of the Royal Procession.
  85. This is the captain's first and last appearance in the series.
  86. In an early draft of the script, the captain was vaporized where he stood.
  87. But everyone agreed that was a little harsh.
  88. It's well known that Momo is the laziest of the group ... and Katara's the worriest.
  89. Grammar note: Worriest is not a word.
  90. Boomerang!
  91. Waterwhip!
  92. Avatar 101: This animal is called an ostrich-horse.
    Armored ostrich horses

    The Earth Kingdom cavalry ordered to attack Aang.

  93. The ostrich-horse is a popular mode of transportation in the Earth Kingdom.
  94. This episode is directed by Giancarlo Volpe.
  95. Giancarlo was the only director to work on all three seasons.
  96. He even won an Annie award for his work in 2006.
  97. If you're ever caught in quicksand, don't struggle ... try to float.
  98. Aang's emotional state is becoming extreme ... which means ... the Avatar State.
  99. Fact: Only a fully realized Avatar can control himself while in the Avatar State.
  100. Seeing a fight between Zuko and Azula is rare.
  101. She is in control the entire time and knows just where to strike.
  102. Right at Zuko's emotions.
  103. Fire daggers are a precision weapon used in hand-to-hand combat.
  104. Lightning bending has a unique setup to generate power.
  105. Thankfully, Uncle has a few tricks of his own.
  106. Recap: Aang is not yet a fully realized Avatar.
  107. Which means he has no control over himself at the moment.
  108. Translation: Look out!
  109. You might remember Avatar Roku.
  110. He was the Avatar before Aang.
  111. This is Avatar Kyoshi.
  112. Lava bending is a combination of earthbending and firebending.
  113. Avatar Roku was the last Avatar to reign before the start of the War.
  114. These are Aang's past lives.
    Zuko and Iroh's wanted poster

    Azula announcing Zuko and Iroh's status as fugitives.

  115. Feeling weak is a common side effect when coming out of the Avatar State.
  116. Another side effect: feeling guilty.
  117. General Fong knocks out easily.
  118. That was a good example of a dumb question.
  119. Zuko and Uncle are officially on the run.
  120. And Iroh hates running.
  121. We find out where this knife comes from later in the series.

"The Cave of Two Lovers"

  1. This episode is Avatar's version of a musical.
  2. Not really.
  3. But it does have more episodes in it than any other.
  4. Recap: Katara is now a master waterbender, taught at the North Pole by Master Pakku.
  5. Blushing is an emotional response, usually associated with love.
  6. Love is a driving theme in this episode.
  7. The "octopus form" is a waterbending technique where you control eight water-whips at once.
  8. It's very effective ...
  9. ... And the kids love it.
  10. Meet the nomads.
  11. The song they're playing is titled: "Travelin' Girl".
  12. These nomads are Avatar's version of hippies.
  13. Hippies were popular in the 1960's.
  14. Avatar 101: All airbenders are nomads and spend their time traveling between four air temples.
  15. Who's ready to see Zuko without a ponytail?
  16. Tah-dah! He actually has a full head of hair!
  17. Recap: Zuko cut off his topknot in the previous episode.
  18. Fun fact: Zuko's hair grows throughout the season.
  19. The designers had to come up with several stages of "Zuko hair"—starting with clean cut and ending with shaggy.
  20. Zuko's not the only one with a new hairstyle ...
  21. Appa with braids!
  22. Chong voiced by Dee Bradley Baker.
    Chong

    Chong, the nomad who told Team Avatar about the Cave of Two Lovers.

  23. Baker also voices Appa and Momo in the series.
  24. Fact: Momo loves rainbows.
  25. "Destination fever" symptoms include: impatience, irritability, and ...
  26. ... over enunciation.
  27. If you have these symptoms, contact a doctor immediately.
  28. Chong plays a "pipa", a pear-shaped guitar.
  29. Much of the score in this show was performed on an actual Chinese guitar.
  30. Dance reference by Avatar staffers Katie Mattila and Lily Wang.
  31. They really dance like that!
  32. "Smash cut" happening ...
  33. ... Now!
  34. This episode sets up Zuko and Uncle's new circumstances as fugitives.
  35. ... And they're terrible at being fugitives.
  36. The writers thought that maka'ole meant "without eyes" in the Hawaiian language.
  37. ... Turns out it means "eye tooth".
  38. Our bad.
  39. Apparently death is a better option than facing Azula.
  40. Labyrinth is a Greek word that means "maze".
  41. It was also the title of a popular movie in the 1980's, starring David Bowie.
  42. Sokka freak-out.
  43. Translation: "Cave of Two Lovers".
  44. Caves are formed by various geologic processes ...
  45. ... Or in this case, by an earthbender.
  46. In this episode we learn the origins of earthbending, so pay attention!
  47. Oblivious: (Adjective). To be unmindful, unaware.
  48. The nomads are often oblivious.
  49. "Shipping" is slang for a romantic relationship.
  50. In this episode there is some major Aang/Katara "shipping" going on.
  51. Fire Nation tanks rendered with computer graphics.
  52. Better known as "CG".
  53. And now, Sokka's three easy steps to getting out of a cave ...
  54. Step 1: Make a plan.
  55. Step 2: Don't waste your torches.
  56. Step 3: Always have a map. Maps are key.
  57. Nurse Song designed after the Avatar character designer.
    Song

    Song, the nurse who treated Iroh.

  58. Lee is a popular name in China and America.
  59. It's important to look at a map right side up.
  60. This episode written by Joshua Hamilton.
  61. It was the first of several episodes he wrote.
  62. Act two complication.
  63. Moving shots add drama to a scene.
  64. Other elements for drama include ...
  65. ... Close-ups ...
  66. ... And ambiguous dialogue.
  67. The line "The tunnels they're a changin' is a homage to Bob Dylan's song, "The Times, They are a Changin'".
  68. Animals are often the first to sense trouble.
  69. Fact: Wolf-bats hate fire.
  70. ... So does Appa!
  71. Stalactites are rock formations that hang like icicles from ceilings of caves.
  72. You don't want to be under a stalactite when it falls.
  73. Appa doesn't like being underground because he's so far away from his natural environment—the sky.
  74. ... And Sokka doesn't like being underground because he's stuck with the nomads.
  75. In Book Two, Zuko is no longer a sheltered "prince"—he's forced to experience life as a refugee.
  76. In many ways, his journey reflects the journey of the Buddha.
  77. Fact: Katara is the only person to touch Zuko's scar in the series.
  78. "Don't Let the Cave-In Get You Down" and other nomad songs available on CD in stores now!
  79. Not really.
  80. Appa speak: "Outta the way, comin' through!"
  81. This episode directed by Lauren Macmullen.
  82. Lauren personally drew and water-colored the following sequence.
  83. Calligraphy translation: War.
  84. Badger-moles are blind and use earthbending to "see".
    Badgermoles

    The badgermoles that helped Sokka and Chong's traveling nomads escape the Cave of Two Lovers.

  85. The story of the two lovers is reminiscent of Romeo and Juliet.
  86. Recap: This woman was the first human earthbender.
  87. Other famous monuments include: the pyramids and the Eiffel Tower.
  88. Fact: It's hard to think when you're annoyed.
  89. Chong has on a strange hat ... but Sokka's hat is even stranger—it's Momo!
  90. The title of this episode is "The Cave of Two Lovers".
  91. It refers to the two lovers of the legend, but also to Katara and Aang.
  92. More blushing.
  93. To "shoot yourself in the foot" is to say or do something stupid which causes problems.
  94. ... And we're about to see it in action right now.
  95. And again.
  96. "Can't Lose the Love" lyrics by Joshua Hamilton ... music by the Track Team ... and performed by Dee Bradley Baker.
  97. Floating lights in this scene are fireflies.
  98. Fires illuminate to attract a mate.
  99. I guess love is in the air.
  100. Irony happening now.
  101. Many fans thought this episode was the beginning of Zuko becoming a good guy ... that is, until he stole the ostrich-horse.
  102. Let's just say he's complicated.
  103. ... Speaking of complicated ... brace yourself for a huge Avatar moment!
  104. What happens in the Cave of Two Lovers, stays in the Cave of Two Lovers!
  105. Note: If Momo runs away, you should too!
  106. Wolf-bats run to gain speed before they launch into the air.
  107. Lesson #21: How to get rid of wolf-bats.
  108. Scream and wave your arms in the air like a crazy person.
  109. You might not look cool, but it works.
  110. This is the first time we see an animal earthbending.
  111. The following are things that Sokka is not ... 1. A bender. 2. A good musician. 3. A good singer.
  112. Glowing crystals were first seen in the episode titled: "The King of Omashu".
  113. The only one that really knows whether or not Aang and Katara kissed is Appa ... and he's not saying a thing.
  114. How Appa shows relief.
  115. If you haven't guessed, badger-moles are a cross between a badger and an owl.
  116. Wait! I mean a mole! A badger and a mole.
  117. Little known fact: Appa and Momo love to share stories.
  118. Note: Chong spells out another theme of this episode ...
  119. Most Avatar episodes don't end with cliff hangers ... but this one does.

"Return to Omashu"

Aang at captured Omashu

Team Avatar discovering Omashu has been captured.

  1. This episode is a direct continuation of the last episode.
  2. Recap: Omashu is the home of the great earthbender King Bumi.
  3. Omashu was thought to be untouchable because of the large canyon surrounding it.
  4. But the Fire Nation built giant metal drawbridges to span the chasm.
  5. See. Metal drawbridges.
  6. The last time our gang visited, Aang had to act like an old man to get in the gates.
  7. Which, technically, he is ... 112 years old to be exact.
  8. Aang looks good for his age.
  9. This design called Sludge-Monster Sokka.
  10. The purple pentapus is found in sewers where it clings to walls living on algae.
  11. Caution: Pentapuses also stick to people.
  12. Aang covers his tattoos so he won't be recognized as the Avatar.
  13. Relax, pentapox is not a real disease.
  14. But chicken pox is.
  15. ... so don't hang around chickens.
  16. Hygiene tip: always cover your mouth when you cough.
  17. Tune in for our next hygiene tip on proper face washing!
  18. The twins Lo and Li have been training Azula since she was a child.
  19. Fun fact: We actually get to see Lo and Li in bathing suits toward the end of the series.
  20. ... No comment.
  21. Azula's tactics are based on precision.
  22. Avatar 101: Omashu was the second largest Earth Kingdom city.
  23. ... until it was taken by the Fire Nation.
  24. Fact: metal actually has trace amounts of earth in it.
  25. Bad guy introduction happening now.
  26. ... or should I say bad girl?
  27. Mai is voiced by Cricket Leigh.
  28. ... and the character appears in more than 10 episodes.
  29. Mai uses darts and daggers to fight.
  30. ... the spring loaded projectiles are hidden in her large sleeves.
  31. Get ready for Mai's first exasperated sigh.
  32. Many more to come.
  33. No, your TV is not upside down.
  34. ... meet Ty Lee, Azula's gal pal #2.
  35. Fact: Ty Lee has six identical sisters.
  36. Platypus bear's second appearance in the series.
  37. Fuddy-duddy: an old-fashioned, fussy person.
  38. An aura is color representation of your mood given off by the energy in your body.
  39. A pink aura is good.
  40. This is the underground resistance.
    Omashu Resistance

    The Omashu Resistance in their underground hideout.

  41. They are literally underground.
  42. Avatar recap: in Book Two, Aang is looking for a teacher to help him master earthbending.
  43. He was hoping King Bumi would teach him.
  44. This episode is directed by Ethan Spaulding.
  45. It's Ethan's Avatar directing debut.
  46. Before Avatar, he worked on The Simpsons.
  47. TV terminology time.
  48. "Walla" is a sound effect imitating the chatter of a crowd.
  49. "Walla" happening now!
  50. Fun fact: The purple pentapus has five eyes and five tentacles.
  51. ... hence the prefix penta, which means five.
  52. Do not try at home.
  53. In an early version of the script, Sokka actually gave tips on how to act sick.
  54. His tips included how to hunch over and properly moan in pain.
  55. The scene was cut down for time.
  56. Momo sign language for food.
  57. Excellent acting.
  58. ... over-acting.
  59. Fact: the entire city of Omashu used to run on earthbending.
  60. But since the invasion, the Fire Nation was forced to retrofit everything.
  61. ... now the city runs on Fire Nation machines and firebending.
  62. Fire flakes: the Fire Nation version of popcorn.
  63. Get ready for the return of ... the nicest goat gorilla you'll ever meet!
  64. Flopsie fun fact: He loves it when you scratch his belly.
    Goat gorilla

    Flopsie.

  65. ... he enjoys eating cans (he is part goat).
  66. And his dislikes include forced labor.
  67. Yip yip: a term used to get air bison to fly.
  68. It's well known that Momo loves cherries.
  69. It's also well known that babies love animals.
  70. This is the same score used in the episode "The King of Omashu".
  71. ... when Aang was riding down these same mail shoots.
  72. Note: unsupervised babies always get into trouble.
  73. Dragon dancing is popular in Chinese culture.
  74. Azula always has the best seat in the house.
  75. The Fire Nation circus travels around the occupied Earth Kingdom.
  76. The circus entertains Fire Nation and Earth Kingdom families alike.
  77. This episode was written by Elizabeth Welch Ehasz.
  78. It was the second of many episodes she wrote.
  79. Earthbender Yung is the head of the resistance.
  80. He used to be the captain in King Bumi's army.
  81. Fact: The governor is not a firebender.
  82. But he was the mastermind behind the invasion of Omashu.
  83. Black flowers- always a bad omen.
  84. Azula is a manipulator.
  85. Note: Babies should not play with weapons.
  86. Fact: Infants often lose their hair because they spend so much time lying down.
  87. A messenger hawk: the Fire Nation version of a cell phone.
  88. A jinx is a term often used when talking about a future event with too much confidence.
  89. Aang just jinxed himself.
  90. Azula's vehicle of choice—the palanquin.
  91. Azula's elite team together for the first time in the series.
  92. The original concept was for Azula to have a team of ninjas.
  93. But the idea of sidekicks with individual skills seemed much more promising.
  94. Omashu is the most important Fire Nation conquest to date.
  95. The Fire Nation goal is to make the city earthbending-proof.
  96. To accomplish this they have begun covering the city in metal.
  97. King Bumi was put in a metal box and strung high in the air so that he could not earthbend.
  98. And yet, surprisingly, he's still in good spirits.
  99. In the original Avatar pilot, Aang fought Zuko on a scaffolding.
  100. Fact: Frozen metal is brittle.
  101. Foot punch. Extremely painful.
  102. Recap: Azula is the only firebender to shoot blue flames.
  103. ... it's because her fire burns hotter than most.
  104. No trip to Omashu would be complete without mail shoot races!
  105. Azula always ruins the fun.
  106. Aside from being an acrobatic fighter, Ty Lee has another rare skill ... chi blocking!
  107. This firebending technique is known as a fire pinwheel.
    Azula in Omashu

    Azula chasing Aang in a cart.

  108. Throughout the series Aang gains knowledge that helps him later.
  109. Knowledge coming at ya!
  110. Like always, Bumi has a crazy plan that will unfold later in the series.
  111. This Momo reference is a callback to the episode "The King of Omashu".
  112. Crazy laugh—Bumi signature sign-off.
  113. Mai and Zuko sitting in a tree ... k-i-s-s-i-n-g.
  114. Avatar happy ending.

"The Swamp"

  1. This is one of the few episodes that begins and ends with Uncle and Zuko's story.
  2. But we never see them in the middle of the episode.
  3. We refer to this as "bookending".
  4. Did you know that the Avatar series has won more than 10 awards?
  5. Including the prestigious Peabody Award.
  6. "The Girls of Ba Sing Se" song by Time Hedrick.
  7. Fact: Most people don't like having swords swung at them.
  8. The swords this man wields are called broadswords.
  9. They are the same kind of swords that Zuko's alter ego, "The Blue Spirit" uses.
  10. Now for the main story ...
  11. Recap: In the last episode, Aang and the gang faced off with Azula and her gang for the first time.
  12. Now they're searching for an earthbending master to teach Aang.
  13. ... Of course, sidetracks are inevitable.
  14. Classic Sokka.
  15. This episode explores the supernatural side of the Avatar World.
  16. ... And director Giancarlo Volpe does a good job creating a scary movie feel.
  17. Swamps are wetlands covered by aquatic vegetation.
    Foggy Swamp

    An overhead view of the Foggy Swamp.

  18. In this case, the banyan-grove tree covers most of the swamp.
  19. Banyan grove trees are an Avatar hybrid of banyan and mangrove trees.
  20. Fact: Throwing in an extra "yip" actually does make Appa go faster.
  21. Tornados on water are called waterspouts.
  22. Protective air bubble first seen in the series premiere.
  23. "The Wizard of Oz" is a popular film featuring a tornado.
  24. Note: This episode is nothing like "The Wizard of Oz".
  25. Experts agree: When lost, stay put.
  26. Things leeches love:
  27. The swamp ...
  28. Humid weather ...
  29. And sucking on people.
  30. Fact: The swamp boasts some of the most unusual animals ...
  31. ... And in the World of Avatar, that's saying something.
  32. Note: This is not an air bison hammock.
  33. And the winner of the belly flop competition is ...
  34. Appa!
  35. The writers wanted to show how the thick forest canopy makes it impossible for Appa to fly away.
  36. Fact: Plants are living organisms.
  37. ... They provide the oxygen we use to breathe.
  38. ... So be nice to your plants!
  39. "Point of view" shot is often used in scary movies.
  40. Finally, Appa and Momo get some alone time.
  41. Avatar 101: This is called a "bison whistle".
  42. ... Its high-pitched whistle is only heard by air bison.
  43. Sokka's machete is useful for a lot of things ...
  44. ... A fly swatter is not one of them.
  45. The screeching dodo has an unusual chirp.
  46. Sokka dabbles in ventriloquism.
  47. Look it up.
  48. This annoying bug is actually a swamp firefly.
  49. They shine a little brighter than regular fireflies.
  50. Insomnia is the inability to obtain adequate sleep.
  51. Translation: Don't mess with Appa's sleep.
  52. Sleeping while sitting up is not good for the back.
  53. Large strangulating vines also not so good for the back.
  54. Warning: Do not fall asleep in the swamp.
  55. Falling down and rolling is a common Sokka exit strategy.
  56. Recap: Katara is now a master waterbender.
  57. This is Due and Tho.
    Due waterbending

    Due maneuvering a skiff during a heated chase to hunt Appa.

  58. They wear leaves on their heads.
  59. ... Leaves are not ideal headgear.
  60. Trivia: Winged lemurs were used by the Air Nomads to retrieve staffs fallen from air bison.
  61. Catgators are a cross between an alligator an a catfish.
  62. They're actually quite docile.
  63. Mysterious swamp time.
  64. Back story: Katara was the only waterbender at the South Pole.
  65. All other waterbenders were taken by the Fire Nation.
  66. ... Katara wasn't taken because her mom hid her during a raid.
  67. Fact: Vines are not dumb.
  68. They're just slow learners.
  69. Recap: Yue gave her life to become the Spirit of the Moon.
  70. ... Sokka and Yue had a bit of a romantic thing going on.
  71. They kissed.
  72. Sokka is Avatar's "ladies man".
  73. "When pigs fly" is a way of saying something will never happen.
  74. This is Toph's first appearance in the series.
  75. She'll have a more proper introduction in a couple episodes from now.
  76. These small, canoe-like crafts are called swamp skiffs.
  77. Licking one's lips is a sign of hunger.
  78. Properly pronounced: Lee-mur.
  79. Possum-chicken is an acquired taste.
  80. Swampbender reveal ...
  81. These guys are actually waterbenders!
  82. Sokka's hilarious when he's mad.
  83. Sok-casm happening now.
  84. That's "Sokka sarcasm".
  85. Avatar trivia: The name "Yue" means the moon.
  86. Note: Not usually a good idea to follow imaginary people.
  87. This is not a giant mushroom.
  88. It's not unusual for a banyan tree to be as large as several city blocks.
  89. Swamp monster alert!
  90. The swamp monster is actually covered in thousands of vines.
    Aang fights Swamp Monster

    Aang fighting the swamp monster.

  91. ... It's his version of a suit and tie.
  92. The swamp is a great environment for a waterbender to fight.
  93. ... There's water everywhere.
  94. Avatar trivia: These swamp people are actually ancestors of the Water Tribe.
  95. ... They migrated from the Water Tribe thousands of years ago and found a natural home in the swamp.
  96. They love trying new food.
  97. Working as a team is often the best way to accomplish a task.
  98. To "regenerate" is to replace or produce anew.
  99. The swamp monster can regenerate itself.
  100. Did you know the liver is the only organ in the human body that can regenerate itself?
  101. Neat, huh?
  102. Plantbending is really just bending the water in plants.
  103. Later, Katara learns to bend the water in people.
  104. More plant bending.
  105. These swamp wetlands cover a large area of the southwest Earth Kingdom.
  106. More Sok-casm.
  107. This tree is actually many thousands of years old.
  108. Who knew a swampbender would have so much insight?
  109. Huu is the protector of the swamp ... like Aang is the protector of the four nations.
  110. Huu reaching enlightenment under this tree is a reference to the Buddha reaching enlightenment under the bodhi tree.
  111. Truth: Sokka isn't sorry.
  112. Avatar vision—you see with your mind.
  113. Song #2 in this episode.
  114. The swamp people know hundreds of songs.
  115. Right now they're in shock ... mostly because no one ever comes to the swamp.
  116. Swamp food is delicious but high in fat.
    Slim

    Slim, the pet catgator of the Foggy Swamp Tribe.

  117. This catgator named after one of the writer's two dogs ... Slim.
  118. His other dog is named Derby.
  119. Fact: Swamp people are greasy.
  120. Bugs are commonly eaten throughout the world.
  121. Huu's hair makes a natural umbrella.
  122. Get ready for the return of an alter ego ...
  123. "The Blue Spirit" is back.

"Avatar Day"

  1. On average, it takes a spider one hour to construct a web.
  2. Which means Sokka has been sleeping with his mouth open for a while.
  3. Meet the "Rough Rhinos".
  4. Not the friendliest bunch.
  5. Their name is derived from Teddy Roosevelt's historic calvary (sic) brigade, "The Rough Riders".
  6. This is Ogodei.
  7. His weapon of choice is a bolo.
  8. Vachir is the explosives expert.
  9. Little known fact: The Rough Rhinos are a very talented singing group.
  10. Spoiler alert: This isn't the last time we see the boomerang ...
  11. ... or the Rough Rhinos.
  12. Note: Aang's arrow is permanently attached.
  13. Water Tribe money is rarely seen in the Earth Kingdom.
  14. Sokka crying.
  15. Avatar Day: is a Chin Village festival that celebrates the Avatar ... sort of ...
    Chin Village

    Chin Village.

  16. Not actual size.
  17. Other festival foods include: candied plums ... and sugar dumplings on a stick.
  18. Carrying the torch is considered an honor, like carrying the Olympic Torch.
  19. And here's the surprise twist.
  20. Avatar Day celebrates this town's hatred for the Avatar.
  21. Trivia: Did you know the Blue Spirit was almost the Red Spirit?
  22. Disapproving sound.
  23. Delicious sound.
  24. Fact: Every year a different person is chosen to light the effigies ...
  25. ... it's usually a Good Samaritan selected by the Avatar Day Counsel.
  26. Freshly waxed.
  27. Ceremonial white robes worn by Counsel members.
  28. Recap: Aang as the Avatar, is reincarnated from all past Avatars.
  29. In short, Aang has like a thousand past lives.
  30. Translation: They think it stinks.
  31. Fact: Honor has no scent.
  32. This is the only Avatar episode to feature a trial.
  33. Sokka motivating speech not very motivating.
  34. "Airbending slice" is a real move.
  35. Aang's head and hands are in a punishment device called a pillory ...
  36. ... and he's behind bars—a double whammy!
  37. Solving the mystery of the missing seal jerky is a highlight in Sokka's life.
  38. Hat and magnifying glass is an homage to Sherlock Holmes.
  39. Rich people love to play with their gold.
  40. Blue mask adds an element of intimidation.
  41. Chin village, named after "Chin the Great".
    Chin's statue

    A statue of "Chin the Great", for whom Chin Village is named.

  42. "Chin the Great", also known as "Chin the Conqueror".
  43. 370-year-old evidence usually not accepted in a court of law.
  44. Mayor Tong is also the village tour guide.
  45. Sokka secretly wishes he was a detective.
  46. But that's no secret.
  47. Ornate bubble blower—no replacement for the boomerang.
  48. Elephant rat in prison for stealing.
  49. Bald head and tattoos essential in prison.
  50. Kyoshi Island.
  51. This is Sokka and Katara's second time here.
  52. Kyoshi Island is named after Avatar Kyoshi.
  53. Kyoshi as originally an earthbender who ruled over 400 years ago.
  54. Did I mention the citizens of Kyoshi love Aang?
  55. Foaming mouth guy—a fan favorite.
  56. In this episode we learn how Kyoshi Island was made.
  57. Spoiler alert: It was sort of man made.
  58. Trivia: Avatar Kyoshi taught fighting skills to the women of the islands.
  59. Those skills are still taught today.
  60. The women fighters call themselves "Kyoshi Warriors".
  61. Avatar recap: Suki is one of the many girls Sokka had a crush on.
  62. It's common for villagers to build shrines to their great leaders.
  63. Sokka is speaking detective talk.
  64. Is that a compliment?
  65. Special outfit, hat and pipe; another reference to Sherlock Holmes.
  66. Sokka is truly a showman.
  67. Fact: Prisoners are people too.
  68. The larger prisoner is referred to in the script as the "sensitive ruffian".
  69. And for good reason.
  70. Writing on mural translation:
    The Birth of Kyoshi

    The mural depicting the birth of Kyoshi Island.

  71. On this day, Avatar Kyoshi splits from the mainland and creates Kyoshi Island ...
  72. ... Hope our citizens' culture will be isolated from the tyranny of the world forever.
  73. Recap: Kyoshi Day and Avatar Day are on the same day.
  74. The sun sets in the west—even in the World of Avatar.
  75. In the Earth Kingdom, there is no universal court system.
  76. Fact: Justice is not spelled "justus".
  77. Being your own lawyer is usually not a good idea.
  78. Aang is not just representing himself, he's representing all his past lives.
  79. ... And he's not doing too hot.
  80. ... At the Five Finger Discount store.
  81. Talking to kids about stealing is never easy.
  82. Don't steal stuff!
  83. This is the first time in Season 2 that Zuko mentions capturing the Avatar.
  84. Uncle Iroh speaks from experience.
  85. This is the only time we see Aang in makeup.
  86. Sokka wore Kyoshi makeup in Book One.
  87. Fact: Chin Law is a mockery of itself.
  88. Avatar Kyoshi did not have a high-pitched voice.
  89. This is the first time we hear Kyoshi speak.
  90. ... And she's ruining Aang's case!
  91. Chin was Kyoshi's version of the Firelord.
  92. The Birth of Kyoshi required the use of all 4 elements.
  93. Kyoshi's head ornament represents a fan ...
  94. ... Fans were Kyoshi's weapons of choice.
  95. Avatar 101: Uncle Iroh is a retired general from the Fire Nation Army.
  96. Wheel of Punishment kind of like the "Wheel of Fortune".
  97. Except you always lose.
    Wheel of Punishment

    The Wheel of Punishment.

  98. Other punishments include: bear hug ... and fed to sharks.
  99. It's the Rough Rhinos again!
  100. Little known fact: The leader of the Rough Rhinos actually served under Uncle Iroh in the army.
  101. This is the first time we hear them called by their name.
  102. The Rough Rhinos are an elite Fire Nation squad, kind of like the Green Beret, or Navy Seals.
  103. A boomerang's flight pattern causes them to loop back to the thrower.
  104. Colonel Mongke is the only firebender in the Rough Rhinos.
  105. Rumor alert: Some people think the Rough Rhinos are responsible for the disappearance of Jet's parents.
  106. Recap: Jet is a character from Book One, who we'll see later.
  107. Fireworks were invented in China in the 12th century.

"The Blind Bandit"

  1. This is a very important episode.
  2. In it a new character is added to the group.
  3. Coupon translation:
  4. ... Master Yu's Earthbending Academy is the best school in the entire country.
  5. ... Special promotion: You only need to purchase a high quality uniform.
  6. How Aang checks if his ears are dirty.
  7. Master Yu is a prestigious earthbending master who comes from generations of upper-class earthbenders.
  8. ... But he's really just interested in money.
  9. This episode won an animation award known as an Annie.
  10. ... For best character animation in television.
  11. Fact: The island of "Nunya Business" is not real.
  12. Large bags are currently in style.
  13. Earth Rumble Six is a homage to professional wrestling.
  14. This episode was written by co-creator Mike DiMartino.
  15. Mike is a huge fan of wrestling.
  16. Xin Fu is the Avatar equivalent of Vince McMahon.
  17. The writers and creators tried to get The Rock to voice The Boulder.
    Earth Rumble VI combatants

    Earth Rumble VI competitors.

  18. The Rock was a professional wrestler turned actor.
  19. The Rock is also known as Dwayne Johnson.
  20. Hippo mad! Trademark. - All rights reserved.
  21. The Big Bad Hippo has teeth like a real hippo.
  22. The Boulder ended up being voiced by Mick Foley.
  23. Mick Foley is a famous wrestler himself known as Mankind.
  24. Fact: Fire Nation Man is not actually from the Fire Nation.
  25. Russian accent also fake.
  26. Fire Nation Man is actually an awesome earthbender who takes on the persona of a bad guy.
  27. Earthbending catapult.
  28. The Gopher.
  29. The Gecko.
  30. The Headhunter.
  31. Fun fact: This is not the first time we've seen this girl.
  32. She appeared briefly in the episode, "The Swamp".
  33. ... As a strange vision in the mist.
  34. See?
  35. Black and white animation is a visual of how the Blind Bandit sees.
  36. She feels the vibrations in the earth.
  37. Her fighting style isn't flashy, but it's effective.
  38. Note: Snarky attitude is not just a part of her wrestling character.
  39. It's part of her real character.
  40. Spoiler alert: The Blind Bandit's real name is Toph.
  41. That's why she has difficulty fighting Aang, who as an airbender is naturally light on his feet.
  42. In this episode Sokka reveals himself as a fashion expert.
  43. ... And Katara reveals herself as a thug.
    Katara threatens

    Katara attempting to extract information about the Blind Bandit.

  44. Punching sand is a common earthbending training exercise.
  45. Stay tuned, we see a lot more earthbending exercises in a later episode.
  46. Fact: The Beifongs are the richest people in the southern Earth Kingdom.
  47. A popular Southern Water Tribe exit.
  48. Translation: "Taking a dive" means to lose on purpose.
  49. Flying boar - first seen in the episode, "The Swamp".
  50. Kids, don't trespass.
  51. Twinkle Toes is one of the many nicknames for Aang.
  52. Other nicknames include: "Master Arrowhead", "That bald kid", and "Hey you".
  53. Toph is voiced by the actor Jessie Flower.
  54. Originally Jessie voiced Meng in the episode, "The Fortuneteller".
  55. Toph is great at acting like she's in danger.
  56. Devious smile.
  57. Toph's parents have no idea that Toph is an awesome earthbender.
  58. Neither does her earthbending teacher, Master Yu.
  59. This is the first good meal our gang had had in a while.
  60. ... If you don't count the bugs they ate at the swamp.
  61. Hint hint ... Hint hint.
  62. Toph's earthbending style doesn't rely so much on punching and kicking rocks, but on bucking the earth and breaking peoples' connection.
    Fissure

    Toph creating a fissure to break The Boulder's stance.

  63. Irony alert!
  64. The power of an airbender sneeze was first seen in the series premiere.
  65. Most places don't have rooms big enough for Appa.
  66. Fun fact: Originally Toph was going to be a 16 year old boy named Sud.
  67. Recap: Badgermoles were the original earthbenders.
  68. Like Toph badgermoles are blind.
  69. We later find out that Toph actually learned earthbending directly from the badgermoles.
  70. Metal cages are essential in catching earthbenders.
  71. It's because earthbenders can't bend metal ... yet.
  72. Traditional Chinese characters are used for all writing in the Avatar World.
  73. Sokka is missing the point.
  74. ... It's a character trait.
  75. Hanging earthbenders in metal cages keeps them away from the earth.
  76. Bumi was held in a metal cage in the episode, "Return to Omashu".
  77. A bounty hunter captures fugitives for a monetary reward.
  78. Recap: Aang is a fugitive to the Fire Nation.
  79. Fact: The Hippo has the strongest jaw of any earth rumbler.
  80. The Fu Manchu is a mustache style popular in the Earth Kingdom.
  81. Expression translation: "Whaaaa?!"
  82. The Boulder talks about himself in the third person.
  83. The third person is a linguistics term.
  84. ... Look it up.
  85. Toph's bending style is based on Chu Gar.
  86. ... Also known as Southern Praying Mantis style.
  87. In general, earthbending is rooted in the Hung Gar style of kung fu.
  88. Did you know: Toph can feel the earth even if it isn't connected to the ground?
  89. The only type of earth she has trouble with is sand.
  90. Spoiler alert: Sand is a major problem for Toph in the desert.
  91. Advice: If you must pop your neck, get a chiropractor to do it.
  92. Spitting is not considered lady-like.
  93. Fun fact: Toph loves her name because it sounds like the word tough.
    Beifong family

    Toph talking to her parents, Lao and Poppy, about her secret identity.

  94. In a future episode Toph gets a second nickname.
  95. Spoiler alert: Her second nickname is The Runaway.
  96. Avatar prides itself on unexpected endings.
  97. And here's one now.
  98. "For your own good" is the worst reason ever!
  99. The Beifong estate is the largest estate in the village.
  100. Toph's Blind Bandit outfit is now her regular outfit.
  101. Note: Toph is not good at catching non-earth items.

"Zuko Alone"

  1. Did you know: This is the only Avatar episode without our main characters, Aang, Sokka, and Katara?
  2. This episode focuses solely on Zuko.
  3. Hence the title: "Zuko Alone".
  4. These two travelers are seen in a later episode titled, "The Serpent's Pass".
  5. Zuko is currently passing through an old battleground.
  6. Large coin-shaped objects are disabled earthbending weapons.
  7. That was Zuko's mother's first appearance in the series.
  8. ... More of her to come.
  9. Fact: Spider-snakes have ten eyes.
  10. ... But they have no legs.
  11. This episode is Avatar's version of a western.
  12. Westerns often focus on strangers who roll into town.
  13. Zuko's design has been slightly altered to show that he's losing weight.
  14. Refresher: Zuko is a fugitive of the Fire Nation and Earth Kingdom.
  15. Chickens can't fly.
  16. ... At least not very good.
  17. Gow is an earthbender who uses hammers to fight.
  18. This is Lee.
  19. Lee is the same name Zuko goes by while traveling through the Earth Kingdom.
  20. Check out all the hybrid pigs!
  21. That's a "wooly pig" and a "moo-sow".
  22. A pigster.
  23. ... That is, a cross between a pig and a rooster.
  24. This episode blurs the lines between the good guys and the bad guys.
  25. The writers wanted to show a world that's not so black and white.
  26. Fixing a roof is one of the many things Zuko is not good at.
  27. He's also not good at ...
  28. Multi-tasking ...
  29. Cleaning up after himself ...
  30. And the game Pai Sho.
  31. Fact: Kids love asking personal questions.
    Lee

    Lee asking Zuko personal questions.

  32. ... And the more personal the better.
  33. This is a "flashback" episode.
  34. It's a fan favorite, where we learn more of Zuko's backstory.
  35. ... And we learn more about Zuko's mother.
  36. Young Azula.
  37. ... Not much different than the older Azula.
  38. Young Azula voiced by Grey DeLisle, the same person that plays older Azula.
  39. Young Zuko is played by Elijah Runcorn, not the same actor who normally plays Zuko.
  40. Fact: Zuko's a momma's boy.
  41. This is the second time we hear about Mai and Zuko's relationship.
  42. Backstory: General Iroh led an infamous battle to bring down Ba Sing Se.
  43. But he only made it through the Outer Wall.
  44. The Fire Nation loves "burning things to the ground".
  45. This is the same knife Zuko uses in the episode "The Avatar State" to cut off his top knot.
  46. Azula loves dolls.
  47. ... Loves burning dolls, that is.
  48. Fire Lord Azulon—the Fire Lord before Ozai.
  49. Azula was named after Azulon.
  50. Sleeping with the pigs is better than sleeping with the fishes.
  51. While in the Earth Kingdom, Zuko fights with broadswords, hiding his firebending.
  52. These swords represent the two sides of Zuko—the good and the bad.
  53. Deer-pig.
  54. Note: Most Earth Kingdom soldiers are very nice.
  55. ... Just not these guys.
  56. Gow enjoys spreading bad news.
  57. Gow also enjoys: ... Tripping old people
  58. And stealing candy from babies.
  59. Losing his son is a major turning point in Iroh's life.
    General Iroh

    Iroh writing from the site of his siege of Ba Sing Se.

  60. Today, Zuko is like Iroh's son.
  61. Young Zuko has one obvious difference from older Zuko ...
  62. ... No scar.
  63. There are a lot of questions about what happened with Uncle at Ba Sing Se.
  64. Rumor alert: Some think this is when Iroh traveled into the Spirit World to find his son.
  65. Azula is the favorite child of Ozai, but not the favorite child of their mother.
  66. Avatar 101: The Great War was started by the Fire Nation over a hundred years ago.
  67. Azula is good under pressure.
  68. Fun fact: The letter "Z" is prevalent in many Fire Nation royalty names.
  69. Example: Azula. Zuko. Ozai. Azulon. Sozin ...
  70. They must like the way it sounds.
  71. Avatar 101: Sozin was the Fire Lord who started the war.
  72. ... Azulon was the next Fire Lord to rule.
  73. Bad firebending form results in involuntary fire blasts ...
  74. ... And falling on your butt.
  75. Fact: Azulon is a grumpy old-timer.
  76. The Fire Lord throne is designed to resemble the face of a dragon.
  77. Dragons are the original firebenders.
  78. ... But over the years, the dragons have gone extinct.
  79. Growing flames—a sign of anger.
  80. Okay, this is one messed up family.
  81. No wonder Zuko turned out the way he did.
  82. "Azula always lies" is Zuko's personal mantra.
  83. Whoops.
  84. In most westerns, the fights take place at high noon.
  85. This is stage two of Zuko's hair growth.
  86. Gow is the only earthbender in his gang.
  87. You can tell he's an earthbender because he's the only one without shoes.
  88. Kung fu masters never fully remove their sword unless they must.
  89. This weapon is a bisteno.
  90. ... Now it's a broken bisteno.
  91. Giant hammers used to earthbend.
  92. This is one of the first times we see this kind of earthbending weapon.
  93. Fact: Zuko is a better fighter than Gow ...
  94. ... but not without firebending.
  95. This is the last time we see Zuko's mother.
  96. ... Also the last time Zuko sees his mother.
  97. Now the cat's out of the bag.
    Zuko surrounded by flames

    Zuko revealing his firebending abilities.

  98. This is the proper way to put away your broadswords.
  99. And now's the time for the twist ending ...
  100. This is one of the first times we see Zuko caring about someone other than himself.
  101. ... He's growing.
  102. How Azulon passed away is never fully answered.
  103. But this episode hints that Zuko's mother did it to spare her son's life.
  104. Crazy, huh.
  105. This is the coronation of Ozai.
  106. This is also Azulon's funeral.
  107. The High Sage keeps the history of the Fire Nation.
  108. Fact: We don't fully reveal Ozai's face until the end of the series.

"The Chase"

  1. "The Chase" is the first episode with Toph as part of our main group.
  2. Fact: Appa sheds his fur every spring.
  3. ... But because Appa's been trapped in an iceberg, he hasn't shed his fur for a hundred years.
  4. So that's a hundred-year-old Appa fur.
  5. Yuck!
  6. Toph is not exactly a "girly" girl.
  7. This is how airbenders open a tent.
  8. Toph is not the first Avatar character to chew on wheat ...
  9. Does anyone remember Jet? Also a wheat chewer.
  10. Actually, Momo just wants Katara to open those nuts for him.
  11. Recap: Toph is an only child.
  12. ... So she's not used to working with others.
  13. Refresher: Toph joined the group to teach Aang earthbending ...
  14. ... Not to annoy Katara. Although she's good at that too.
  15. Using earthbending Toph can feel vibrations over long distances.
  16. In an earlier version of the storyboard, this scene had animals running through the campsite ...
  17. ... They were running away from this.
  18. That "thing" is a tank-train.
    Tank train

    The tank train Azula, Mai, and Ty Lee used to chase Team Avatar.

  19. Tank-train facts:
  20. It's from the Fire Nation ...
  21. It's an engineering marvel ...
  22. And it's really expensive.
  23. Fact: Toph doesn't like flying on Appa.
  24. On Appa, Toph can't feel the earth and becomes truly blind.
  25. The old "hand to the face" is never a good way to calm an argument.
  26. "Sugar queen" definition: A goodie-two-shoes, a know it all. Someone who is the queen of sugar.
  27. This is the first of many arguments between Katara and Toph.
  28. Katara's calm face.
  29. That's a low blow.
  30. So is that.
  31. Earthquaking (v.) to quake the earth.
  32. By the way, "earthquaking" is a made-up Sokka word.
  33. Other made up Sokka words include: "Rappa pow" and "Slappa doo!"
  34. Lack of sleep becomes a big plot point in this episode.
  35. Design terminology: An "SPC" is a special pose or costume of a character.
  36. For this episode, the designers had to do an SPC of the main characters looking tired.
  37. ... Note the baggy eyes.
  38. Spoiler alert: They'll see Zuko soon.
  39. Fact: The warriors of the Southern Water Tribe have a bunch of wolf-themed stuff.
  40. In fact, their war-paint is designed to look like a wolf.
  41. Toph is not the only one who can sense danger.
  42. ... Momo can too!
  43. ... But no—Momo is not an earthbender.
  44. This tank-train is rendered in CG.
  45. New creature reveal happening now!
  46. These animals are called mongoose-dragons.
    Mongoose lizard

    One of the mongoose dragons used by Azula as a mount.

  47. Fact: Sokka is the only nonbender in the group.
  48. Instead of bending, Sokka uses a club as a weapon.
  49. ... As well as a very pointy boomerang.
  50. Mongoose-dragons are a hybrid of a mongoose and a basiliscus lizard.
  51. Refresher: That's called lightning bending.
  52. Lightning bending is a rare, high-level firebending attack.
  53. Katara was chi blocked.
  54. Sokka is in the second stage of sleep deprivation.
  55. The second stage includes paranoia and buggy eyes.
  56. In the first few episodes with Toph, she hangs on tightly to Appa's saddle while flying.
  57. And it's a good thing she does!
  58. Air bison rarely fall asleep while flying.
  59. ... But they have been known to sleep-fly ...
  60. Crash landing.
  61. Fact: Lack of sleep often leads to irritability.
  62. Aang is currently trying to keep peace in the group.
  63. As the Avatar, Aang is supposed to keep peace between the Four Nations.
  64. It's common for roommates to argue.
  65. ... But it's usually about dirty dishes.
  66. Appa's shedding fur was an idea originally thought of in the beginning of the series.
  67. Sokka is always there to give it to them straight.
  68. This is Appa's first bath in the entire series.
  69. Don't worry, he's a naturally clean animal.
  70. He's clean, but now he smells like wet bison.
  71. Toph facts: She's a three-time Earth Rumble champion ...
  72. Her parents are filthy rich ...
  73. ... And she's a nose-picker.
  74. Manners alert! It's impolite to earthbend at someone just because they're nearby.
  75. Ty Lee is Avatar's version of a valley girl.
  76. Now it's time for "get to know an Avatar town"!
  77. Here we have the deserted village of Tu-Zen.
    Tu Zin

    Tu Zin.

  78. This ghost town located in the mountainous southern Earth Kingdom was once a bustling mining town.
  79. But after all the metal was mined out, everyone left, practically overnight.
  80. ... And now it can all be yours for just 200 gold pieces!
  81. Water Tribe money not accepted.
  82. Mongoose-dragons are originally found in the tropical jungles of the Fire Nation.
  83. The mongoose-dragon is an extremely stubborn animal. That's why firebenders begin training them from birth.
  84. Appa crash landing #2.
  85. And the most interesting fact about mongoose-dragons is ... they can run on water!
  86. Ty Lee used to be an acrobat in the circus.
  87. This is what happens when you "chi block" a nonbender.
  88. ... You get noodles for limbs.
  89. The title of this series is "Avatar: The Last Airbender". But really Appa's an airbender too ...
  90. ... So maybe the series should've been called "Avatar: The Second-to-Last Airbender".
  91. It's not nice to make fun of people ...
  92. Even if you are related to them.
  93. Uncle travels light.
  94. ... But he never goes anywhere without a tea pot.
  95. Pouring tea for someone is a sign of respect.
  96. Fact: Toph and Uncle have no idea who the other is.
  97. Okay, update time.
  98. ... Iroh's tracking Zuko,
  99. Zuko's tracking Azula,
  100. Azula's tracking Aang,
  101. and Aang's tracking nobody.
  102. Got it?
  103. Thoughtful tea sip.
  104. This is the first time Aang has seen Zuko since the North Pole.
  105. Other Zuko childhood nicknames incled: Zu-Zu, Ko-Ko, and Zuk-Zuk.
  106. A "Mexican standoff" is slang for a three way showdown.
  107. The Mexican standoff was featured in several westerns.
  108. This sequence is a homage to those films.
  109. Fact: Azula's blue firebending actually turns orange as it cools.
  110. This was an especially difficult sequence for the director and the storyboard artists ...
  111. Getting three people to fight each other at once can't be easy.
  112. Fact: Airballs run out of steam after about 15 seconds.
    Duel against Azula

    Azula shielding herself from multiple attacks before mysteriously vanishing.

  113. Freestyle wall climbing is a popular extreme sport.
  114. Zuko's POV shot. Is he dreaming??
  115. Nope. Reality.
  116. This is Toph's way of saying sorry.
  117. Major spoiler alert: This sequence of Zuko and Uncle helping the Avatar foreshadows things to come ...
  118. This is the first time we see all four elements attacking at once.
  119. ... Plus Sokka.

"Bitter Work"

  1. This episode is titled, "Bitter Work".
  2. "Bitter Work" is a loose translation of the words "kung fu".
  3. A "sifu" is a kung fu master who passes on their knowledge to others.
  4. It's a fancy way to say teacher.
  5. In this section of the script there was actual dialogue for Sokka ...
  6. ... But actor Jack DeSena added his own flair.
  7. The "Rock-a-lanche" and the "Trembler" are moves Aang saw during Earth Rumble Six.
  8. They're mainly just for show.
  9. "Like a Rock" is a popular song by Bob Seger.
  10. It's been in a bunch of commercials.
  11. Aang doesn't watch commercials --
  12. He's kind of busy.
  13. Hey! It's supposed to be Aang earthbending, not earth Aangbending!
  14. This is Lu Ten, Iroh's son.
  15. His death changed Iroh's life.
  16. Now Iroh wants to change Zuko's life.
  17. Iroh is a bit of a tea snob ...
  18. ... But a polite tea snob.
  19. Zuko and Uncle are in the same town from the previous episode.
  20. Zuko's hair is in the "second stage" of growth.
  21. Airbending is evasive ...
  22. ... And earthbending is aggressive.
  23. Rock-headbutt!
  24. That's got to hurt
  25. ... The rock.
  26. If Katara is the nurturing mother of the group ...
  27. ... Toph is like the father.
  28. ... The drill sergeant father.
  29. Earthbending training includes ...
  30. ... Carrying a boulder.
    Aang carries a rock

    Toph training Aang to earthbend.

  31. ... And sand punching.
  32. Shoving Sokka's face is not a part of training.
  33. ... But the "whack-a-rock" exercise is.
  34. This is rock armor.
  35. The "sand-sack throw" is supposed to strengthen an earthbender's connection with the ground.
  36. Fact: Sokka likes meat more than he likes cute things.
  37. The last time we saw Iroh training Zuko was in the series premiere.
  38. The last time we saw Zuko drinking tea was ...
  39. Never.
  40. Yin and yang first discussed in the Book One finale.
  41. Recap: When the spirits of yin and yang become unbalanced, a giant koi monster sprang out of the sea.
  42. So leave yin and yang to the professionals.
  43. Lightning bending: the Avatar World's first form of electricity.
  44. Now, if they could just figure out how to use it to power a light bulb ...
  45. The "horse stance" is a real kung fu stance.
  46. Kids, don't play with boulders while blindfolded.
  47. In fact, just don't play with boulders.
  48. Avoiding things is a part of an airbender's instincts.
  49. In other words, you can't really blame Aang.
  50. Well, maybe you can.
  51. Recap: Aang is a master airbender ...
  52. ... He's mastering waterbending
  53. ... And he's got a ways to go with earthbending.
  54. Aang isn't the only one learning new kung fu.
  55. In this episode, Zuko and Aang have parallel stories.
  56. They both have "kung fu block".
  57. It's like writer's block.
  58. Kung fu is more accurately defined as a skill acquired through hard work.
  59. ... And it applies to any skill, not just kung fu.
  60. This is a saber-tooth moose lion cub.
    Foo Foo Cuddlypoops

    Foo Foo Cuddlypoops giving a trapped Sokka an apple.

  61. Fact: Saber-tooth tigers went extinct about 11,000 years ago.
  62. They were basically big tigers with even bigger teeth.
  63. Karma is the law of cosmic causation.
  64. Basically, if you do good, good things happen to you.
  65. And if you do bad ...
  66. This happens.
  67. Facing issues is an important lesson for kids to learn.
  68. In other words, they are across from each other on the "bending pie chart".
  69. Note: "Bending pie chart" not real.
  70. That's sifu. Not seafood.
  71. Little known fact: Iroh is an excellent sand artist.
  72. Iroh would have made a great Avatar.
  73. Aang clearly labels all of his things.
  74. Even his underwear.
  75. Fact: This is not a nutcracker.
  76. Blind people often use walking sticks to feel in front of them.
  77. This location is an old rock quarry.
  78. The rock quarry is the perfect spot to learn earthbending.
  79. Unfortunately the rock quarry has a bunch of holes you can easily get stuck in.
  80. ... Just ask Sokka.
  81. Sokka stuck in a hole is this episode's comic relief.
  82. Aang has classic case of "I don't know what to do".
  83. Avatar 101: Aang loves animals.
  84. Did you know, Aang's a vegetarian?
  85. Note: Never stand between a mother saber-tooth moose lion and her cub!
  86. This move is a waterbending technique.
  87. It moves water back and forth.
  88. Translation: Uncle is chubby.
  89. Fact: A sea is partially surrounded by land, and an ocean has no boundaries.
  90. Spoiler alert! In the Book Two finale, someone gets struck by lightning.
  91. ... It's not Zuko.
  92. Uncle is "poppin and lockin".
  93. "Poppin and lockin" is a breakdancing technique.
  94. In his younger days, Uncle was a pretty good breakdancer.
  95. Not really.
  96. Aang, please put the cub down slowly ...
  97. The saber-tooth moose lion has teeth like a saber tooth tiger ...
  98. ... Antlers like a moose.
  99. ... And a tail like a lion.
  100. Earthbending technique ...
  101. Good.
  102. Earthbending ...
  103. Not good.
  104. Toph has a unique way of training Aang.
    Aang earthbends

    Aang showing his newly acquired earthbending skill to Katara.

  105. ... She infuriates him.
  106. Aang breakthrough happening now.
  107. Hooray! It's Aang's first official earthbending moment!
  108. This is what Sokka's hair usually looks like in the morning.
  109. Appa translation: "Hey don't forget about me!"
  110. Zuko yelling to the heavens ...
  111. ... Coolest ending yet.

"The Library"

  1. Get ready for some fun ...
  2. At the library!
  3. It's more exciting than it sounds.
  4. These are the singing groundhogs.
  5. The singing groundhogs are a big tourist attraction on the Golden Prairie.
  6. ... Because they're so cute.
  7. Little known fact: Aang is a very capable flute player.
  8. Aang knows about the prairie groundhogs from when he traveled the world over a hundred years ago.
  9. Avatar 101: Aang was frozen in an iceberg for a hundred years.
  10. This map shows that they are on the edge of the desert.
  11. The "Misty Palms Oasis" is a cantina built atop an underground iceberg.
  12. And here's the tip of iceberg now.
  13. Sandbender facts: They love spitting ... grunting ... and just hanging out.
  14. This katana-wielding bartender makes some of the best frozen beverages this side of the Earth Kingdom.
  15. The ice is cut fresh off the iceberg every morning.
  16. You can taste the difference.
  17. Aw! He just bought that!
    Zei

    Professor Zei, head of anthropology at Ba Sing Se University.

  18. Anthropology is the study of human beings everywhere and throughout time.
  19. Anthropologists don't go anywhere without a head-measurer.
  20. Professor Zei's thirst for knowledge has brought him to strange, remote, and often dangerous places.
  21. ... Meanwhile his thirst for a fruit smoothie has brought him here.
  22. Toph has dirty feet.
  23. I guess she's "one with the earth".
  24. Wan Shi Tong's Library was actually in an episode already.
  25. ... It was in a flashback in the Book One finale.
  26. Map translation: "Wan Shi Tong's Mysterious Library".
  27. Wan Shi Tong translates to "He who knows ten thousand things".
  28. That's a lot of things.
  29. Appa is scared of sandbenders.
  30. And we find out later that he has good reason to be.
  31. The Earth Kingdom Desert is known as the Si Wong Desert.
  32. Appa has a double-chin.
  33. The Si Wong Desert has the hottest, driest climate of anywhere in the Avatar world.
  34. Probably not the best place for a mini-vacation.
  35. Si Wong literally means "Desert of the Dead".
  36. It sounds better in Chinese.
  37. Fact: A fox's natural environment is not the desert.
  38. ... But this is not just a fox.
  39. Toph "sees" using earthbending.
  40. ... It has to do with vibrations.
  41. Spoiler alert! This is the last time Aang sees Appa until the end of Book Two.
  42. This library was brought over from the Spirit World thousands of years ago.
  43. The Spirit World exists alongside the physical world ...
  44. But only certain people can see the Spirit World.
  45. This is Wan Shi Tong.
    Wan Shi Tong

    Wan Shi Tong.

  46. He's the world's oldest librarian.
  47. And the world's strangest.
  48. Recap: Spirits often take on different forms when they cross over from the Spirit World to the physical world.
  49. Wan Shi Tong took the form of a giant owl.
  50. Look! It's a Commander Zhao sighting!
  51. Owls mostly hunt small mammals, insects and other birds ...
  52. ... But this one looks like it wants to hunt Sokka.
  53. Fun fact: The underground library was an old idea thought of early in the series.
  54. The library is briefly mentioned in Book One ... even before the writers knew how they would incorporate it.
  55. This episode is actually a major turning point in Book Two.
  56. This is Aang's wanted poster.
  57. He carries it in his shirt, along with his marbles ... and his toothbrush.
  58. The men of the Southern Water Tribe have to know how to tie many different kinds of knots for sailing ...
  59. ... And for lacing up their knee-high moccasins.
  60. Toph is terrible at small talk.
  61. Later in the series, the lion-turtles teach Aang something only an Avatar can do.
  62. But that information is classified.
  63. Libraries often display important artifacts under glass.
  64. Please, do not touch!
  65. Fire Nation symbol.
  66. Firebenders fight dirty.
  67. Earthbenders fight with dirt.
  68. These Knowledge Seekers are also great library assistants.
  69. The Knowledge Seekers search the world for information that they bring back to the library.
  70. Like Wan Shi Tong, the Knowledge Seekers are spirits in animal form.
  71. But they're much cuter than Wan Shi Tong.
  72. The Knowledge Seekers are roughly designed after "Sophie".
  73. ... Sophie is one of the Avatar staffer's dogs.
  74. This burnt parchment reads:
  75. The date of the darkest day in Fire Nation history is the 19th day, of the 7th month of the cultivate rule dragon year.
    Astronomy room

    Aang and Sokka discovering the date of the next eclipse.

  76. Sokka knows his eclipses.
  77. He's an amateur astronomer.
  78. Recap: A fiery comet makes firebenders stronger ...
  79. ... While a solar eclipse takes their bending away.
  80. Did you get all that?
  81. Did you know? Owls have almost twice as many vertebras in their neck as humans.
  82. It's the reason they can swivel their heads so far around.
  83. Fact: Owls cannot extend their necks like Wan Shi Tong.
  84. He's a special owl.
  85. Like Momo, Appa is good at sensing danger.
  86. The sinking library is a "ticking clock".
  87. A "ticking clock" is term used when there is a limited time to accomplish a task.
  88. Note: Never stare directly at an eclipse. It's bad for the eyeballs.
  89. Sandbenders ride across the desert on sandsailers.
  90. Sandsailers are like catamarans of the desert.
  91. Sozin's Comet returns every 100 years.
  92. ... And gives firebenders unimaginable strength.
  93. 100 years ago, the Fire Nation harnessed the power of the comet to start the war and destroy the nomads ...
  94. Now the Fire Nation hopes to win the war when the comet returns.
  95. According to the chart, the solar eclipse is on the 1st day of the 8th month of the superior military monkey year.
  96. ... Whenever that is.
  97. Sandbenders are earthbenders who have adapted to the desert environment.
    Appa captured

    Sandbenders, led by Ghashiun, kidnapping Appa.

  98. Kind of like swampbenders were just waterbenders.
  99. This is one of the saddest sequences in Avatar history.
  100. Originally Appa was going to be taken earlier in Book Two.
  101. This is the worst librarian ever.
  102. Most librarians just want you to be quiet.
  103. This one wants to stuff you and display you on a wall.
  104. Foggy Swamp style is a reference to the swampbenders.
  105. Wan Shi Tong just got "schooled".
  106. Rumor alert! Some think Professor Zei ends up in the Spirit World.

"The Desert"

  1. This episode was written by Tim Hedrick.
  2. It's titled "The Desert".
  3. Tim also wrote an episode titled "The Deserter".
  4. ... Just a coincidence.
  5. Appa is one of Aang's oldest friends.
  6. ... They've been hanging out for over a hundred years.
  7. ... But they spent most of their time "hanging out" in an iceberg.
  8. Recap: Uncle is in pain because he was "lightning-blasted" by Azula.
  9. ... Also, ostrich-horses are extremely uncomfortable to ride.
  10. It's the return of the "Rough Rhinos!"
  11. First seen in the episode "Avatar Day".
  12. The "Dragon of the West" is Iroh's nickname.
  13. ... Iroh got his nickname after killing off the last two dragons.
  14. Spoiler alert! He didn't actually kill them.
  15. Colonel Mongke is the only firebender in the group.
  16. Kahchi's weapon of choice is the kwan dao.
  17. Recap: Uncle and Zuko are fugitives of the Fire Nation.
  18. ... They're also fugitives of the Earth Kingdom.
  19. It's nice to be wanted ...
  20. ... But not wanted for a crime.
  21. Signs of heat stroke include:
  22. ... Fatigue
  23. ... Confusion
  24. ... And rosy red cheeks.
    Sokka hallucinates

    Sokka hallucinating on cactus juice.

  25. Bending water is not ideal for consumption.
  26. Cactuses retain water for long periods.
  27. But many varieties are poisonous.
  28. This is Sokka's cactus juice advertisement.
  29. The most direct route to Ba Sing Se from the south is through the Si Wong Desert.
  30. ... But it's also the most dangerous.
  31. In fact, "Si Wong" translates to the desert of the dead.
  32. Did you know? A mushroom is a living organism known as a fungus.
  33. Now that's one big fungus.
  34. Looks! It's Xin Fu and Master Yu!
  35. Recap: Xin Fu and Master Yu were hired by Toph's father to bring Toph home.
  36. Zuko and Uncle with topknots.
  37. Zuko and Uncle topknot-less.
  38. In desperate situations it's important to keep your spirits up.
  39. Aang ... not helping ...
  40. Sand pudding—delicious but gritty.
  41. "Circle birds" better known as "buzzard wasps".
  42. Over-reacting is a side effect of dehydration.
  43. Another dehydration side effect includes ...
  44. ... Paranoia.
  45. Technically, Sokka did steal these.
  46. But he stole them for a good reason.
  47. You know ... saving the world.
  48. The kids were just at the Misty Palms Oasis one episode ago.
  49. Master Yu is the owner of a prestigious earthbending academy.
  50. ... With more money, he hopes to start a franchise.
  51. Look—the tiles resemble a lotus.
  52. Pai Sho—a way of life.
    Playing Pai Sho

    Iroh playing Pai Sho with his contact in the Order of the White Lotus.

  53. Fact: Geezers love yapping.
  54. "Gold," the magic word.
  55. Recap: Xin Fu is an Earth Rumble wrestler.
  56. ... He loves a good brawl.
  57. Little known fact: Momo loves tucking people in at night.
  58. This is a Katara-heavy episode.
  59. Not sure what Sokka's doing with Momo's tail here.
  60. Fact: Clouds are formed by small droplets or ice crystals suspended in the atmosphere.
  61. This is one of the few episodes where Aang lets his anger get the better of him.
  62. This is no boat.
  63. ... It's a sand-sailer.
  64. The sandbenders actually bend sand into little tornados to move the sailers.
  65. In a later episode, we find out how this sand-sailer got here.
  66. It had to do with Appa.
  67. The "Order of the White Lotus" is also known as "OWL".
  68. "OWL" is a secret society that spans nations.
  69. This secret society is devoted to the sharing of ancient knowledge and philosophy.
  70. Their creed is "The quest for truth above all else".
  71. In ancient times, sailors used the stars to guide them.
  72. The North Star was especially important, as it always appears due north.
  73. But the North Star is only visible in the Northern Hemisphere.
  74. Sorry Southern Hemisphere!
  75. Revenge is very un-Avatar like.
  76. Rock angel.
  77. ... Earthbender's version of a snow angel.
  78. Eating strange things on cave walls is not recommended.
  79. Cave, no.
  80. Hive, yes.
  81. This large rock in the middle of the desert is known as the "Si Wong Rock".
    Si Wong rock

    Si Wong Rock.

  82. Sandbender lore claims that the Si Wong Rock was dropped from the sky by the gods to prove their power.
  83. ... Or it's a meteorite.
  84. Buzzard wasps feed their young with the honey-like substance Sokka was licking earlier ...
  85. ... Or with small pets.
  86. Buzzard wasps are one of the few animals to survive in the desert.
  87. Fact: Buzzard wasps are half animal, half bug.
  88. Yikes.
  89. Buzzard wasps hate loud noises.
  90. These are the sandbenders from the previous episode.
  91. Fung is a low-ranking member in the Order of the White Lotus.
  92. Fung hopes to some day be an OWL grand master.
  93. Iroh once led a 600 day siege on Ba Sing Se.
  94. He was the closest anyone ever came to conquering the great city.
  95. Sandbenders wear several layers of clothing to protect them from the sun and keep them cool.
  96. Early scripts describe Toph's eyes as "cloudy".
  97. Misty Palms Oasis is often thought of as a tough town.
  98. But Fung's flower shop actually does surprisingly well here.
  99. Even tough guys love flowers.
  100. Aang is usually a passive guy.
  101. Oh no, he's done it now ...
  102. ... It's Avatar State Aang.
  103. Recap: Aang's voice in the Avatar State is the voice of all Avatars.
  104. Katara also helped bring Aang out of the Avatar State in the episode "The Southern Air Temple".

"The Serpent's Pass"

  1. Waterbending bomb is a lot like a cannonball but with the additional power of waterbending.
  2. Fact: Water damage devalues paper collectibles.
  3. Avatar 101: Ba Sing Se is surrounded by an outer wall and an inner wall.
  4. Recap: Appa was taken and sold by sandbenders.
  5. In a future episode titled "Appa's Lost Days", we find out what happened to Appa.
  6. These travelers were first seen in the episode "Zuko Alone".
  7. ... Zuko almost stole food from them.
  8. But even Zuko couldn't steal from a pregnant woman.
  9. "Full Moon Bay" inspired by Half Moon Bay, a real place in Northern California.
    Earth Kingdom ferries

    Ferries moored at Full Moon Bay waiting to take refugees to Ba Sing Se.

  10. This episode written is by two writers ...
  11. Mike DiMartino and Josh Hamilton.
  12. Tourist hat and souvenirs available at Full Moon Bay market.
  13. Full Moon quality at Half Moon prices.
  14. Jet was last seen in the episode appropriately titled "Jet".
  15. Longshot named for his skill as an archer.
  16. Hey! That's a perfectly good bowl!
  17. This is the cabbage merchant's 3rd appearance in the series.
  18. Fun fact: If you slow down the video you can actually see a cabbage slug flying through the air.
  19. It's the little, squishy-looking gray thing.
  20. These impostors designed after actual people dressed up like Aang, including co-creator Mike DiMartino.
  21. This is our first glimpse at Ba Sing Se's rigid structure and rules.
  22. Fact: In the Avatar World, few documents are more official than the Golden Seal of the Flying Boar.
  23. This is a new look for an old character ...
  24. Anyone recognize the voice?
  25. Recap: Suki is one of the Kyoshi Warriors from Kyoshi Island.
  26. ... And she was Sokka's first love interest on the show.
  27. Sokka's workout routine includes:
  28. Three chin touches…
  29. Ten toe taps.
  30. And twenty South Pole slaps ...
  31. Which are basically just jumping jacks.
  32. Half Moon Bay is a lot like a busy airport.
  33. ... And this bureaucrat is like a really mean ticket agent.
  34. Word of the Day: Willy-Nilly; adj. Without order or plan; haphazardly.
  35. Ah, now this is how we remember Suki.
  36. The Kyoshi Warrior outfits are designed after kabuki theater costumes.
  37. ... And their face paint is supposed to intimidate opponents.
  38. Sign translation: Coiling Serpent Mountain Pass.
    Serpent's Pass entrance

    The entrance to the Serpent's Pass.

  39. The graffiti can also be translated as: "Sever hope".
  40. Same thing, really.
  41. Abandoning hope is a real Buddhist philosophy.
  42. Although it's not supposed to be interpreted negatively.
  43. It's meant to inspire you to "Live In the Now".
  44. ... Or something.
  45. Fire Nation ship.
  46. ... You can tell by the dramatic music cue.
  47. Fact: The Serpent's Pass is the only piece of land separating the western and eastern lake.
  48. Pregnant women often get swollen feet.
  49. Note: Some spiders can be dangerous.
  50. But most are harmless.
  51. Ferry rides from Full Moon Bay to Ba Sing Se take about a day.
  52. ... And all passengers get complimentary rotten meat and moldy bread.
  53. At least it's complimentary.
  54. Hook-swords are Jet's signature weapon.
  55. He uses them to fight and swing on things.
  56. Telltale signs that Aang is not feeling like himself include:
  57. Refusing to make eye contact.
  58. ... Not sleeping.
  59. ... And denying Katara a hug.
  60. ... And he loves hugging Katara!
  61. Recap: Sokka's ex-girlfriend is now the Spirit of the Moon.
  62. So this might get weird.
  63. If you don't know about Sokka's moon girlfriend, watch the end of Book One.
  64. ... It'll explain everything.
  65. Suki began her Kyoshi Warrior training at the age of eight.
  66. Who's ready for Smellerbee's big reveal?
  67. Yep, Smellerbee's a girl.
  68. Longshot talks with his eyes.
  69. Fact: Iroh's siege on Ba Sing Se was the closest anyone ever came to conquering the Great City.
  70. ... So far.
  71. "Second chances" is one of the many themes in this episode.
  72. And now ... Avatar Trivia Time!
  73. The Serpent's Pass was first mentioned in an early version of the script, "The Cave of Two Lovers".
  74. In that script, a character talks about crossing "The Serpent's Pass".
  75. The line was eventually cut, but the name inspired part of this episode.
  76. Trivia Time over.
  77. Did you ever wonder where the "Serpent's Pass" gets its name?
    Serpent

    The serpent.

  78. Well, wonder no more.
  79. The unagi is another giant sea monster thingy.
  80. The unagi lives in Kyoshi Bay.
  81. This serpent was in the original unaired Avatar pilot.
  82. The serpent always lets out a loud screech before it attacks.
  83. Suki's more than a Kyoshi Warrior ...
  84. She's also a part time lifeguard.
  85. Defeating a giant sea serpent is easier than you may think.
  86. First, run across water at an incredible speed.
  87. Next, create giant water vortex.
  88. And finally, slam beast into a mountain.
  89. Done and done.
  90. The Ba Sing Se wall, that is.
  91. "Holding in" babies not recommended by doctors.
  92. Mr. Scar and Mr. Wheat Grass together at last.
  93. The original title for this episode was "The Journey to Ba Sing Se".
  94. It's not uncommon for titles to go through several changes before the episode is aired.
  95. Fainting is caused by the lack of oxygen to your brain.
  96. And that concludes Aang's emotional journey for this episode.
  97. In an early version of the script, the baby's name was the Chinese word for hope.
  98. Ahhh ... There's that hug he missed out on.
  99. The great wall of Ba Sing Se was inspired by the Great Wall of China.
  100. We'll see Suki again later.
  101. Sokka and Suki originally kissed in the episode "The Warriors of Kyoshi".
  102. ... But this kiss is much better.

"The Drill"

Drill plans

The mechanist's plans for the drill.

  1. Fun fact: The original design for this drill was seen in the episode "The Northern Air Temple".
  2. It was on one of the mechanist's blueprints.
  3. This War Minister was also seen in "The Northern Air Temple".
  4. Back story: The War Minister forced the mechanist to design this drill.
  5. Those "muscley guys" are known as the "Terra Team".
  6. Recap: To date, Iroh was the closest any one ever came to overtaking Ba Sing Se.
  7. Earthbender's version of an elevator.
  8. This baby is less than two hours old.
  9. Note: The Avatar is not a civilian.
  10. ... But he is civil.
  11. Mike DiMartino and Bryan Konietzko wrote this episode.
  12. They also happen to be the creators of the show.
  13. Avatar 101: "The Dragon of the West" is Iroh.
  14. Ba Sing Se also translates to the "Eternally Solid City".
  15. The word "terra" refers to the earth or ground.
  16. It makes sense because the "Terra Team" are all earthbenders.
  17. ... Plus it's cool alliteration.
  18. This pressure point fighting is called "chi blocking".
  19. General Sung is hilariously unqualified for this job.
    Terra Team defeated

    Ty Lee easily defeating the Terra Team.

  20. He's more of a pencil pusher.
  21. This giant drill was built for the sole purpose of getting into Ba Sing Se.
  22. This bureaucrat might have a hard facade ...
  23. ... But on the inside she's just searching for someone to love her for who she is.
  24. Could it be Uncle Iroh?
  25. Old people flirting ...
  26. Ick!
  27. Fact: Jet loves chewing on wheat.
  28. Recap: Many waterbenders have healing powers.
  29. They use waterbending to open chi paths in the body.
  30. ... It's better than taking medicine.
  31. This is how Sokka lets you know he has an idea.
  32. ... Or he has to go to the bathroom.
  33. This drill was designed after real tunnel-boring drills.
  34. Momo, you fly.
  35. It's well known that Ty Lee loves to say fun words.
  36. Note: When a bad guy says he's "sure it's nothing", it's probably something.
  37. This was the easiest scene to animate in the entire episode.
  38. Aang would have been a great trapeze artist.
  39. Recap: For Toph, no earth means no bending.
  40. And no bending means no seeing.
  41. The Fire Nation is the most industrious of all the nations.
  42. They are on the cutting edge technologically.
  43. ... But they still don't have the Internet.
  44. Sokka doesn't have an engineering degree.
    Drill schematics

    Sokka examining the schematics of the drill.

  45. He's self-taught.
  46. Iroh loves jasmine tea.
  47. ... But ginseng tea is his favorite.
  48. Jet and Zuko have a lot in common.
  49. They both have scruffy hair ...
  50. They both have dark pasts ...
  51. And they're both handsome devils.
  52. Note for Sokka: The plans are not actual size.
  53. This waterbending technique is known as "water lashing".
  54. Water lashing is based on a Japanese sword technique called "Iaido".
  55. Sokka is about to get iaido-ed!
  56. That's called anti-climatic.
  57. Darn it! The count down to victory clock is broken!
  58. Dirt and water mixed together is called "slurry".
  59. Slurry is a real thing, even though it sounds made-up.
  60. Idea sound effect.
  61. Sokka is often used as a sparring dummy.
  62. He's good at being a dummy.
  63. Poignant moment, often followed by ...
  64. A comical moment.
  65. Toph is regularly left behind to stop things from moving ...
  66. Remember the library?
  67. Brace cutting montage. More water lashing.
  68. Fact: Sokka can't help being a stud.
  69. Waterbender's water pouch - never leave home without it.
  70. Slurry pipelines move the excavated dirt out of the drill.
  71. Pentapuses love wall sludge juice.
  72. Seriously, watch the episode, "Return to Omashu".
  73. The giant drill also makes a great mud slide.
  74. Do not eat mud.
  75. Sokka has been doing a lot of "telling people what to do" this episode.
  76. Fact: Ba Sing Se is almost continually under attack by the Fire Nation.
  77. ... But this the most serious threat since General Iroh's "600 Day Siege".
  78. Slurry bending - a combination of water and earthbending.
  79. Azula is a very "hands on" bad guy.
  80. ... And yet her nails are perfect.
  81. Recap: Aang is still learning earthbending ...
  82. Thankfully, he's a quick learner.
  83. We've got an Avatar down!
  84. Many Ba Sing Se residents actually live on the Outer Wall.
  85. Rock hand!
  86. That's handy.
  87. It's a slurry slip n' slide!
  88. Azula will need a manicure after this.
  89. Kung Fu consultant, Sifu Kisu, helped choreograph most fight sequences.
    Destroyed drill

    The drill after its destruction.

  90. Airbending slice!
  91. Airball to wall run ... classic Aang.
  92. Heroic Avatar music reserved for awesome moments ...
  93. Like right now!
  94. Slurry overload.
  95. Azula even loses with style.
  96. Look who it is: Tahn, Ying, and Hope.
  97. Recap: Katara helped deliver that baby in the previous episode.
  98. Before this earthbending monorail was invented, it took several days to get from the Outer Wall to the Inner Wall.

"City of Walls and Secrets"

  1. Like many things in the city, this monorail runs on earthbending.
  2. In between the Outer Wall and the Inner Wall is the Agrarian Zone.
  3. This land is mostly used for farming ... or for nature walks.
  4. Cactus juice is a reference to the episode "The Desert".
  5. "The Desert" was written by Tim Hedrick and so is this episode.
  6. Who's ready to see Ba Sing Se for the first time?!
  7. Oooo!
  8. Aaaah!
  9. Originally, our group wasn't going to make it to Ba Sing Se until the very end of the season.
  10. Bison whistle.
  11. No, it's not broken.
  12. Joo Dee is designed after Avatar line producer Miken Wong.
    Joo Dee

    Joo Dee.

  13. Miken is well known as one of the friendliest and smiliest Avatar staffers.
  14. Technically speaking, not everyone is safe.
  15. But Joo Dee is correct in that Ba Sing Se has never been invaded by an outside force.
  16. This is the official tour of Ba Sing Se.
  17. Did she say lively?
  18. Uncle always plans for the unexpected.
  19. ... And Zuko bringing home a "lady friend" would be very unexpected.
  20. "Life Happens Wherever You Are": An inspirational book by the Dragon of the West.
  21. Fact: It would be difficult to live under someone's nose.
  22. The Fire Nation is responsible for the disappearance of Jet's parents.
  23. Toph comes from an upper class family, so she's familiar with these situations.
  24. See.
  25. Last season, Zuko was hunting the Avatar.
  26. ... Now he's serving tea.
  27. This is pretty much the bottom of the barrel for Zuko.
  28. Tea recipes in Ba Sing Se have been untouched by innovations for generation, producing a flavorless brew.
  29. In other words, the tea is terrible.
  30. The Royal Palace design was inspired by the Forbidden City in China.
  31. "Cultural authority" also referred to as the secret police.
  32. The Earth King is the most powerful ruler in the entire Earth Kingdom.
  33. Meetings by appointment only.
  34. Recap: Our group is anxious to see the Earth King to tell him about the eclipse.
  35. She just got in the way.
  36. Momo spends the majority of his time looking for food.
  37. If Aang is the good cop ...
  38. Sokka is the bad cop.
  39. This pet salesman has overactive sweat glands.
  40. It's why he doesn't work with people.
  41. Professor Zei was last seen in the episode "The Library".
  42. And Professor Zei is most likely still in the library.
  43. This is nosey neighbor Pong.
  44. In an earlier draft of the script, there was another neighbor named "Ping".
  45. The writers thought it was funny to have two neighbors named Ping and Pong.
  46. Apparently, it wasn't funny enough to stay in the script.
  47. Hmm ... ominous.
  48. Spark-rocks are the Earth Kingdom version of a match.
  49. Kids, don't play with spark-rocks.
    Bosco

    Bosco, the Earth King's pet bear.

  50. Fact: Stretching every morning improves flexibility.
  51. Toph's still working on her impressions.
  52. Avatar 101: Most animals in the Avatar World are a combination of two or more animals.
  53. A regular bear is extremely rare.
  54. Another thing rarely seen in Avatar is ...
  55. ... Nose picking and booger flicking.
  56. Acting like "people of society" can be extremely dangerous.
  57. Told you.
  58. This is Avatar's version of Rock, Paper, Scissors.
  59. Earth beats fire every time.
  60. Katara is presently breaking the first rule of society.
  61. ... And she just learned that rule!
  62. Fact: Old habits are hard to break.
  63. Rumor alert! Some say Longshot and Smellerbee are romantically involved.
  64. Oh great! Now it's not a secret anymore!
  65. These two are common Earth Kingdom soldiers.
  66. They are different from the Earth King soldiers and the Dai Li.
  67. Ba Sing Se is well protected.
  68. Double swords versus double hook swords.
  69. I'm hooked!
  70. Look, it's the return of the "Official Seal of the Flying Boar".
  71. The official seal doesn't work every time.
  72. This is Long Feng.
  73. He's head of the Dai Li.
  74. We'll learn a lot more about him soon.
  75. Sticking out your tongue is not proper society etiquette.
  76. Seats this close to the bear is an honor, but it comes with a downside.
  77. Cultural minister / evil guy.
    Zuko fights Jet

    Jet and Zuko fighting.

  78. Sokka has many great plans throughout the series.
  79. This is not one of them.
  80. Avatar 101: Zuko is a broadsword master.
  81. His alter ego "The Blue Spirit" uses them instead of firebending.
  82. My wheat!!!
  83. Jet does talk a lot.
  84. That didn't help.
  85. In this episode, Zuko serves tea and so does Aang.
  86. It's considered an honor to be air-blasted by the Avatar.
  87. This Avatar trick is known as the "spinning rainbow water-ball".
  88. Bosco loves it!
  89. Jet and Zuko are equally matched fighters.
  90. They saw the whole thing, but didn't do anything.
  91. They were on break.
  92. Rock-gloves mean great rock-handcuffs.
  93. Let's play: "Guess Who's the Earth King".
  94. If you guessed this guy, you won!
  95. Sorry, we're all out of prizes.
  96. Rock-hands are extremely versatile.
  97. ... Not even Momo can escape them.
    Aang and Long Feng

    Long Feng and Aang in the library.

  98. Glowing green fire is mostly just for looks.
  99. Long Feng is the ultimate middleman.
  100. Figures.
  101. The name of this episode is "The City of Walls and Secrets".
  102. ... Now we know why.
  103. This is the Dai Li's brainwashing technique.
  104. Creepy ending happening now.

"The Tales of Ba Sing Se"

  1. Have you ever wondered how our main characters maintain their good looks?
  2. This is how.
  3. Toph likes to go all-natural.
  4. Fact: Earthbenders love to be covered in dirt.
  5. ... But firebenders don't love to be covered in fire.
  6. This is the only Avatar episode that is made up of several "shorts".
  7. ... And they are all written by members of the Avatar crew.
  8. Pumice stones are used to soften and clean feet.
  9. ... But they don't really work that well on Toph.
  10. This short was written by Lisa Wahlander and Joann Estoesta.
  11. ... They were both production coordinators on staff.
  12. Toph is rarely seen wearing make-up.
  13. Even Katara doesn't wear make-up that often.
  14. It's not really that helpful in a fight.
  15. It's never good to make fun of people.
  16. Especially if those people are a waterbending master and an earthbending master.
    Toph spits

    Toph, despite having been raised in a societal environment, fails to act in a lady-like manner.

  17. See?
  18. Toph and Katara usually argue with each other.
  19. So this is a rare moment.
  20. Want to see how Toph shows affection?
  21. That's how.
  22. This short was written by Andrew Huebner.
  23. Andrew was the production manager on the series.
  24. Having crew members write these shorts was head writer, Aaron Ehasz's idea.
  25. He thought it would be fun to see what they came up with.
  26. Iroh is good with plants, good with babies.
  27. ... And even a good singer.
  28. This song was also written by Andrew Huebner.
  29. Kids love music.
  30. ... And pulling on beards.
  31. Who's ready for some earthbending ball?
  32. Do not play near windows.
  33. In this short, Uncle helps everyone he meets.
  34. ... Except for the guy with the broken window.
  35. Meet the worst mugger ever.
  36. Proper mugging technique includes a solid "horse-stance".
  37. Note: If you ever get a knife away from a mugger, don't give it back.
  38. Uncle knows that in dangerous situations it's best to remain calm.
  39. ... And he knows tea is a great way to calm people down.
  40. The name of the song that Iroh sings is called "Leaves From the Vine".
  41. Uncle's picnic reveal.
  42. ... It's for his son, Lu Ten.
  43. Calligraphy translation: "General Iroh, I will see you again when victory is obtained. Your loyal son, Lu Ten".
    Ba Sing Se Zoo

    The Ba Sing Se Zoo.

  44. Zoos are usually fantastic places to visit.
  45. ... But not this one.
  46. Aang was hoping that he might find Appa here.
  47. Recap: Appa has been missing for several episodes.
  48. This short was written by Gary Scheppke.
  49. Gary was a production assistant on staff.
  50. "Hop your way to happiness" is just good advice.
  51. Fact: Aang loves animals and he loves helping.
  52. This is not helping.
  53. Guess who's back??
  54. Our lovable loser, the cabbage merchant.
  55. That was actually the cabbage merchant's last appearance in the series.
  56. But the cabbage merchant is mentioned in a later episode.
  57. Note: The bison whistle can be heard by other animals.
  58. ... If it's blown loud enough.
  59. Please do not feed the animals.
  60. Turtle-seal.
  61. Opening the Ba Sing Se gate takes the full strength of six or more earthbenders.
  62. Aang is becoming a pretty good earthbender.
  63. See?
  64. He just built a new zoo!
  65. Rabaroos are marsupials.
  66. Marsupials carry their young in pouches.
  67. The writer of this short, Lauren MacMullan, is actually a director.
  68. Sign on the door reads, "Five-Seven-Five Society".
  69. Sokka loves haikus.
  70. A haiku is a form of Japanese poetry ...
  71. The first line has five syllables, the second line has seven syllables and the third line has five syllables.
  72. That was Sokka's first haiku.
  73. This teacher is Madame Macmu-Ling.
    Five-Seven-Five Society

    The Five-Seven-Five Society.

  74. Her name was inspired by the last name of the writer for this short.
  75. MacMullan = Macmu-Ling.
  76. This is Avatar's version of a rap battle.
  77. Ahh ... slam!
  78. Macmu-Ling always carries plums in her sleeves.
  79. ... Just to step on.
  80. Usually haikus don't rhyme.
  81. The "Five-Seven-Five Society" has strict syllabic rules.
  82. And if you break those rules.
  83. ... This is what happens.
  84. Recap: Iroh and Zuko are criminals wanted by the Fire Nation and Earth Kingdom.
  85. It's common for fugitives to feel paranoid.
  86. Fact: Uncle picks up on hints much better than Zuko.
  87. This short was written by Katie Mattila.
  88. Katie was a production coordinator and later became the script coordinator.
  89. This isn't Katie's only writing in the series.
  90. She also wrote the episode titled, "The Beach".
  91. Hair combed Zuko!
  92. Whoops! Not anymore.
  93. It's not polite to play with your food.
  94. ... Also, it's not polite to yell at waiters.
  95. Awkward.
  96. Zuko is terrible at dates.
  97. ... He's terrible at lying.
  98. ... And he's terrible at juggling.
  99. Zuko is a fighter, not a lover.
  100. But he does have a soft side.
  101. This is the first time we've seen Zuko firebend in more than 4 episodes.
  102. The Fire Light Fountain is pretty much the most romantic place in all of Ba Sing Se.
  103. No cash value.
  104. Fact: Most Avatar kisses end with someone quickly walking away.
  105. Uncle isn't just a firebending master.
  106. ... He's also a bonsai master.
  107. Aw, shucks!
  108. Hey, it's Appa!
  109. Appa was last seen in the desert.
  110. No, Momo does not have a mohawk.
    Momo sad

    Momo resting in Appa's footprint.

  111. ... It's Appa fur!
  112. This short was written by Giancarlo Volpe and Justin Ridge.
  113. Giancarlo was a director on the series.
  114. ... And Justin was an assistant director.
  115. Uh-oh.
  116. ... Pygmy pumas.
  117. Pygmy pumas are a smaller, sleeker version of pumas bred for compact city living.
  118. They're extremely dangerous when provoked.
  119. But they're otherwise a very cute carnivore.
  120. Speaking of cute.
  121. ... Momo's got some mad dance skillz!
  122. This score is a version of Momo's music.
  123. Momo's music score is often heard when he's doing something silly.
  124. Silliness over.
  125. Pygmy pumas are often trapped and sold in Ba Sing Se.
  126. Skull key.
  127. ... Never a good sign.
  128. For all of you who wondered what Momo hears.
  129. ... Here you go.
  130. And this is what Momo sees.
  131. Fact: Flying lemurs are smarter than pygmy pumas.
  132. But pygmy pumas are more pathetic.
  133. This is how pygmy pumas say thanks.

"Appa's Lost Days"

  1. This is an extra special Avatar episode ...
  2. It begins where we last saw Appa.
  3. ... In the Si Wong Desert.
  4. In the episode, "The Library", we saw Appa being taken by sandbenders.
  5. But we never found out what happened to him ...
  6. ... Until now.
  7. Recap: Sandbenders are earthbenders who have adapted to the desert environment.
  8. Sandbenders make a living by stealing goods and selling them to traders.
  9. This episode received a Genesis Award from the Humane Society in the category "Outstanding Children's Programming".
  10. It was one of more than ten awards for the series.
  11. Warning: Never disregard the power of an airbender's sneeze.
  12. This is the very sand-sailer that Aang and the gang later find.
  13. Recap: If it wasn't for the sand-sailer, our group might not have made it out of the desert.
  14. ... So in a way, Appa saved them.
  15. This umbrella came from the episode, "The Fortuneteller".
  16. Can anyone guess why these guys are called beetle-headed merchants?
  17. Hint: Look at their heads.
  18. These merchants actually ride around on large beetles.
  19. See. Large beetles.
  20. This takes place during the time of the episode "The Desert".
  21. Sandbenders don't offer money-back guarantees.
  22. These darts are laced with the poisonous saliva of the shirshu.
  23. The spit of a shirshu temporarily paralyzes its victims.
  24. This sequence is straight out of the episode titles "The Desert".
  25. Meet the circus trainer.
    Circus trainer

    The circus trainer in charge of training Appa.

  26. He's creepy.
  27. Look, cabbages --
  28. But no cabbage merchant!
  29. The cabbage merchant is currently on his way to Ba Sing Se.
  30. This is the same circus where Ty Lee used to perform.
  31. Since she left, attendance has been down.
  32. ... So they need a new starring act.
  33. They are hoping Appa will fill that void.
  34. This vulture lion just isn't cutting it.
  35. Fact: The circus trainer hates burps.
  36. This is the only episode besides "Zuko Alone" in which Katara and Sokka have no dialogue.
  37. Sizzle-crisps are spicy-hot, crispy goodness, with a mouth-watering bacon-y crunch.
  38. Did you know? Just like Aang, Appa is a vegetarian.
  39. But Aang doesn't like to eat hay.
  40. This circus master was first seen in the episode, "Return To Omashu".
  41. Wind buffalo = sky bison.
  42. Sizzle-crisps are so good, you won't want to share.
  43. Fact: Appa is the last of the sky bison.
  44. The circus trainer uses his fire-whip to scare the animals and break their will.
  45. But, it's about to backfire.
  46. The Si Wong Library is the last place where Appa saw Aang.
  47. In the series, the writers and creators always made sure to show Appa as a main character.
  48. ... And not just as a flying vehicle.
  49. No Appa, don't go in there!
  50. Told you!
  51. These are the same buzzard-wasps that attacked Aang and the group.
  52. Who's ready to see ...
  53. Baby Appas!?
  54. And look, it's pre-tattooed Aang.
  55. This is the Eastern Air Temple ...
  56. Where sky bison are raised.
  57. Appa still tackles and licks Aang to this very day.
  58. This location is the "Serpent's Pass".
  59. It's true, Appa does sort of look like a monster right now.
  60. He's just having a bad-hair day.
  61. Actually, he's having a bad-everything day.
  62. What do you get when you cross a boar with a porcupine?
  63. ... A boar-q-pine!
    Boar-q-pine

    A boar-q-pine.

  64. And now ... Appa versus boar-q-pine.
  65. Usually this wouldn't be much of a match, but Appa is pretty weak.
  66. Plus, Appa's legs are shackled.
  67. But it doesn't matter ...
  68. The winner of the match is ...
  69. Appa!
  70. In this episode, we don't just find out what happened to Appa ...
  71. We also see what happens to Suki after leaving the "Serpent's Pass".
  72. Recap: Suki found out that Appa was missing when she met up with our gang.
  73. Suki last saw Appa at the beginning of season one ...
  74. In the episode, "The Kyoshi Warriors".
  75. ... So he might not remember her right away.
  76. Always approach wild animals cautiously.
  77. ... Better yet, don't approach wild animals.
  78. Recap: Initially, the Kyoshi Warriors stayed out of the war.
  79. But our main group inspired them, and they've been helping ever since.
  80. Ouch! Boar-q-pine stingers!
  81. Uh-oh! Azula music cue means ...
  82. Azula's here!
  83. Azula hasn't been seen since her defeat in the episode "The Drill".
  84. Ladies and gentlemen, please brace yourself for an awesome girl fight.
  85. Fact: Mai's favorite color is black.
  86. Jealous much?
  87. This is the first time we see the Kyoshi Warrior's fans used as shields.
  88. None of the Kyoshi Warriors are benders.
  89. ... So they are at a distinct disadvantage.
  90. Spoiler alert! This is the last time we see Suki until season three.
  91. Southern Water Tribe ships ...
  92. Anyone remember Hakoda?
  93. That was Sokka and Katara's dad.
  94. This is Appa's first trip back to the Eastern Air Temple in a hundred years.
  95. It's where he grew up ...
  96. ... And where he first met Aang.
  97. Could this be an airbender?
  98. Nope.
  99. Guru Pathik is a hundred and fifty years old ...
  100. But he doesn't look a day over ninety.
  101. This guru was actually alive when the airbenders were around.
  102. And he even knew Aang's airbending mentor, Monk Gyatso.
  103. Pathik is not a bender.
    Pathik surrounded by nature

    Guru Pathik greeting Appa at the Eastern Air Temple.

  104. Guru Pathik has spent years reaching enlightenment.
  105. ... And he has a special connection with all the energy in the universe.
  106. The airbenders were well known for having a special connection with the universe, too.
  107. Rumor alert! Some even say the airbenders aren't gone ...
  108. ... But instead they've learned how to "become wind".
  109. But that's just a rumor.
  110. At this time, the kids are in Ba Sing Se looking for Appa.
  111. Our group last heard that Appa was sold to someone heading to the Great City.
  112. Top secret. Do not read.
  113. Locating someone by feeling their energy was first seen in the episode, "The Swamp".
  114. Finally, Appa makes it to Ba Sing Se.
  115. Dai Li agents.
  116. Look! Pygmy pumas!
  117. The pygmy pumas lead Momo to this location in the previous episode.
  118. Hey, that's not Aang's bison whistle!

"Lake Laogai"

  1. These drawings were done by staff writer, John O'Bryan.
  2. As you can tell John is not an artist ...
  3. Neither is Sokka.
  4. Toph probably could have done a better job ...
  5. And she's blind.
  6. The "professional version" was actually designed by co-creator Bryan Konietzko.
  7. This is Quon, a wealthy merchant from the Upper Ring.
    Quon

    Quon, the wealthy merchant who offered Iroh his own tea shop.

  8. You can tell he's rich because he travels with assistants ... and wears jewelry.
  9. Many wealthy people travel to the Lower Ring for the delicious food.
  10. Senior assistant manager would look great on his resume ...
  11. That's a made up title!
  12. Zuko thought his days of looking for the Avatar were over ...
  13. Think again.
  14. This is Avatar's version of "go fish".
  15. ... Not really.
  16. In this episode we find out why Joo Dee is so ... weird.
  17. This is actually the first of two "Joo Dees" the kids have met.
  18. It was a working vacation.
  19. Also, it's against the Ba Sing Se litter laws.
  20. It's easy to tell if Aang gets upset ...
  21. He turns red ...
  22. And his head gets really big.
  23. Toph loves breaking stuff.
  24. Dai Li spies.
  25. Joo Dee's in trouble.
  26. Black pupils ... not good.
  27. Long Feng likes to "think out loud".
  28. The "Jasmine Dragon" is a reference to Uncle's nickname ...
  29. "The Dragon of the West".
  30. This is starting to sound like the old Zuko.
  31. The calligraphy on Appa's wanted poster reads ...
  32. Searching for a flying sky bison. Name: Appa. Has 6 legs and ways 10 tons.
  33. And backward.
  34. Recap: Jet was Katara's first love interest in the series ...
  35. Let's just say their relationship didn't end well.
  36. This is what happens when you betray Katara.
  37. The kids last saw Jet in the middle of Book One.
  38. His old gang was called "The Freedom Fighters".
  39. This is Toph's newest skill.
  40. ... She's a human lie detector.
  41. Appa fur! It's the easiest way to find Appa.
  42. "Whale Tail Island" is a real place in the Avatar World.
    Whaletail Island

    Sokka pointing out Whaletail Island on a map.

  43. The island got its name from its shape ...
  44. It looks like a whale's tail!
  45. Katara doesn't like to be interrupted.
  46. We know from the previous episode that Appa is actually in the city.
  47. Who's ready to be confused?
  48. Or Smellerbee's been brainwashed.
  49. Nah. It was Jet.
  50. Hey, he's not skinny! He's just thin-boned!
  51. Rock gloves are perfect for distance fighting.
  52. Darn it! Zuko spent hours making that dummy.
  53. Correct and correct.
  54. Aang is also correct.
  55. Recap: Jet is the first boy that Katara kissed.
  56. Aang wishes he was the first boy she kissed.
  57. Wheat is Jet's signature accessory.
  58. This is Colonel Mongke of the Rough Rhinos.
  59. Waterbending is helpful in brain-unwashing.
  60. Blind earthbenders are super-handy to have around.
  61. This is one of many secret, underground headquarters in Ba Sing Se.
  62. "Joo Dee" training center.
  63. ... Or more accurately, the brainwashing center.
  64. Aang hasn't seen Appa since the middle of the season.
  65. ... In Avatar time that's almost a month.
  66. Ooh ... Trickery.
  67. Speaking of trickery ...
  68. This is either the Dai Li nap room ...
  69. ... Or it's a trap.
  70. All Dai Li agents are earthbenders.
  71. Dai Li agents fight with their signature "rock gloves".
  72. It's usually not best to make an Avatar mad.
  73. Uh oh ...
  74. This is the first time Uncle actually sees Zuko in his Blue Spirit alter ego.
  75. ... Although he's known Zuko was the Blue Spirit for a while now.
  76. It is a much bigger apartment.
  77. ... But Zuko and Appa would have to share a room.
  78. Iroh yells because he cares.
  79. Iroh doesn't want to see his nephew go back to his old ways.
  80. Deep ...
  81. This isn't the first time Aang has fought Jet.
  82. ... But it will be the last.
  83. The Freedom Fighters were a small group that fought against Fire Nation control.
  84. This sequence was storyboarded several times in many different ways.
  85. The healing power of waterbending cannot fix all injuries.
  86. This is the only time Longshot talks in the entire series.
  87. Fact: Lake Laogai is not a great vacation destination.
  88. Dai Li agents use earthbending to run extremely fast.
  89. After seven episodes ... look who's back!
  90. And he's ready to kick some major Dai Li butt!
  91. Did anyone wonder how Appa got away?
  92. ... Zuko let him go.
  93. Zuko's way of saying goodbye to an old life.

"The Earth King"

  1. Laogai Island is located in the middle of Lake Laogai.
  2. It has a population of zero.
  3. ... Unless you counts rodents.
  4. Recap: Appa was reunited with Aang and the gang at the end of the last episode
  5. Sokka is not usually this optimistic.
  6. "Sweetness" is one of Toph's many nicknames for Katara.
  7. Other nicknames include: "Sugar Queen" ... and "Madame Fussy Britches".
  8. Spoiler alert! "Madame Fussy Britches" is from a future episodes.
  9. Appa's back, baby!
  10. ... But his saddle isn't.
  11. The palace grounds are located in the center of Ba Sing Se.
  12. The palace is the military and spiritual center of the entire Earth Kingdom.
  13. Surface to air rocks are also called "SARS".
    Rocks

    Royal Earthbender Guards launching surface-to-air rocks at Team Avatar.

  14. They get their name from the real weapon: surface to air missiles or "SAMS".
  15. The Royal Earthbending Guards are the protectors of the Earth King.
  16. ... Like secret service agents.
  17. This earthbending move was first seen in the episode "The Avatar State".
  18. Most major fight sequences happen at the end of an episode.
  19. This is one of the rare times it happens in act one.
  20. Note: These are not evil Dai Li agents ...
  21. That's why the kids feel bad.
  22. The Royal Earthbending Guards are almost never called into action.
  23. ... So they're not the best fighters around.
  24. That doesn't make them feel any better, Sokka.
  25. It's always polite to knock before entering a room ...
  26. Doing something right has never felt so wrong.
  27. Like most things in the Earth Kingdom, this door is meant to be opened using earthbending.
  28. ... Or airbending works too.
  29. Fun fact: The Earth King's throne is designed after the badger-mole.
  30. The badger-mole was the original earthbender.
  31. And he loved that fancy door!
  32. "Your Earthiness" is not the proper way to address the king.
  33. The Dai Li "glide" on top of the earth using earthbending.
  34. Gliding is a good way to sneak up on people ...
  35. Plus, it looks cool.
  36. Earthbending-handcuffs don't work on earthbenders.
  37. Fact: Bosco is a good judge of people.
  38. Earth King back-story ...
  39. The Earth King began his rule at age four ...
  40. And Long Feng was his defacto "guardian".
    Long Feng's bite mark

    Team Avatar's proof that Long Feng had encountered Appa.

  41. Long Feng has been lying to the Earth King so that he can maintain power.
  42. You can say that he's power-trippin!
  43. Long Feng is great at lying.
  44. ... Because he's been doing it for so long.
  45. Long Feng is one of the few earthbenders who wears shoes.
  46. Happy cheer!
  47. Disappointed sigh.
  48. Mixed reaction.
  49. A fever is the body's way of fighting off infection ...
  50. This Earth King's name is "Kuei".
  51. Like real ancient Chinese emperors, Kuei has lived a sheltered life.
  52. "Your Kingliness" is also not the proper way to address the king.
  53. Did you know? Earth King Kuei is the fifty-first Earth King.
  54. ... And he's the first one to ever see the Outer Wall.
  55. He'll later be the first Earth King to ever leave Ba Sing Se.
  56. Look, it's Zuko!
  57. ... Without a scar.
  58. This is Zuko's ideal version of himself.
  59. These two dragons each embody an influential person in Zuko's life.
  60. The blue dragon represents Azula.
  61. ... And the red dragon represents Uncle.
  62. Together they show the conflict going on in Zuko.
  63. In the episode, "The Drill", the kids stopped the Fire Nation from breaking through the Outer Wall.
    Long Feng arrested

    Long Feng being arrested.

  64. Is anyone buying this guy?
  65. ... Nope.
  66. Metal clasps are the correct way to handcuff an earthbender.
  67. Originally, the writers thought of making the Earth King either a really young boy, or a really fat man.
  68. ... In the end, they decided to go with just a normal looking guy.
  69. Finally! The kids get to tell the Earth King their plan!
  70. ... It only took them half a season.
  71. "The Day of Black Sun" takes place in Book Three.
  72. The "Council of Five" decide on the best use of the Earth Kingdom armies fighting outside the wall.
  73. Ba Sing Se boasts the most extensive filing system in the world.
  74. This scroll was seen in the episode "Appa's Lost Days".
  75. According to Uncle, nothing should stop you from enjoying tea.
  76. "The Metamorphosis" is a famous novella by Franz Kafka.
  77. In the book, a salesman turns into an insect.
  78. ... But don't worry, Zuko will not turn into a bug.
  79. A poisonous blowfish is actually called a "fugu".
  80. Fugu and guru do sound pretty similar.
  81. Note: Appa is currently waiting outside.
  82. When the Southern Water Tribe men went to war, Sokka didn't get to go.
  83. ... Because he was too young.
  84. Warning! Blush marks usually means Aang is going to say something extremely emotional!
  85. Bad timing Sokka. Bad timing.
  86. Aang's never going to wash that cheek again.
  87. Have you ever wondered what Zuko would look like as the Avatar?
  88. Weird, huh?
  89. Note: When Sokka says stuff like this, he's usually wrong.
    Impersonating Kyoshi Warriors

    Azula, Mai, and Ty Lee impersonating the Kyoshi Warriors.

  90. Ba Sing Se has the best prison food in the world.
  91. Uh oh ...
  92. That's not good.
  93. There's a reason Toph doesn't feel anyone nearby ...
  94. Who remembers Xin Fu and Master Yu?
  95. The last time we saw the Kyoshi Warriors, they were battling Azula and her sidekicks.
  96. Guess we know who won that fight.

"The Guru"

  1. Jook is rice boiled overnight until it becomes soft and runny ...
  2. Ick.
  3. Who is this and what have you done with the old Zuko?
  4. This is Chameleon Bay.
  5. The bay gets its name from the numerous color changing trees in the area.
  6. Note: Chameleons also change color.
  7. Sokka hasn't seen his dad since the men of his tribe left to fight in the war.
  8. ... That was more than two years ago.
  9. Note: These are not the Kyoshi Warriors.
  10. Nope. Just bored.
  11. The Earth King is currently giving away too much information.
  12. So much for a surprise attack.
  13. This is the Council's war room.
  14. Katara is an honorary member of the "Council of Five".
  15. The "Council of Five" lacks a sense of humor.
    Meeting of the Council of Five

    Katara meeting with the Council of Five to discuss the invasion.

  16. In the series, Aang has officially visited three out of the four air temples.
  17. He'll visit the Western Air Temple in Book Three.
  18. Recap: Monk Gyatso was Aang's airbending mentor.
  19. This drink is an acquired taste.
  20. ... And it takes about a hundred years to acquire.
  21. Xin Fu and Master Yu were sent by Toph's father to bring Toph back home.
  22. That line is called foreshadowing
  23. Mai is Avatar's version of a "goth-girl".
  24. A coup is the sudden, unconstitutional overthrow of a government.
  25. A coup should not be confused with a coupe, which is a style of car.
  26. Fact: The guru is the oldest person Aang has ever met.
  27. He's even older than Aang!
  28. Recap: Aang is 112 years old.
  29. ... But being frozen in an iceberg for a hundred years keeps you looking remarkably young.
  30. The guru could use a little iceberg skin therapy.
  31. And that's how you clean a creek!
  32. ... Also, how you clean your mind.
  33. Aang is used to "intense experiences" by now.
  34. ... So he thinks.
  35. Chakra is an East Indian concept.
  36. The word chakra actually means "wheel".
  37. It represents the wheel of time and refers to celestial order and balance.
  38. Celestial order and balance are Avatar-heavy concepts.
  39. This is Aang at the Southern Air Temple.
  40. ... After he found out he was the Avatar.
  41. Look it's Bato!
  42. Bato was first seen in the episode, "Bato of the Water Tribe".
  43. Sokka and Hakoda have a lot in common.
  44. Including their knack for inventing ...
  45. ... And their sense of humor.
  46. Bato still has his injury from an earlier episode.
  47. That's right, Sokka's a man now.
  48. Welcome to "the Jasmine Dragon".
    Iroh and Zuko in tea shop

    Zuko and Iroh in the Jasmine Dragon.

  49. ... It's Uncle's new tea shop.
  50. This episode is part one of the Book Two finale.
  51. It was written by co-creators Mike DiMartino and Bryan Konietzko.
  52. This sequence is from the episode "The Deserter".
  53. In that episode, Aang injured Katara with firebending.
  54. Onion and banana juice has been known to cause indigestion.
  55. The Dai Li use earthbending to cling to walls.
  56. The Dai Li are sneaky little fellas.
  57. But Azula's pretty sneaky herself.
  58. The fourth chakra is the "air" chakra.
  59. This chakra should be easy for Aang—he is an airbender, after all.
  60. This image is from the first time Aang saw Katara.
  61. Fun fact: The guru is the oldest person in the Avatar World.
  62. ... But he's not the oldest living thing.
  63. In Book Three, we'll meet the oldest living thing.
  64. The guru spent most his life studying yoga and meditation before reaching spiritual enlightenment.
  65. Now he is connected to all cosmic energy.
  66. The guru knew he must help Aang.
  67. In this episode, Aang isn't the only one who learns something new.
  68. Fact: All metal has small amounts of "earth" still in it.
  69. ... But it's such a small amount, it would take a truly talented earthbender to bend it ...
  70. Speaking of truly talented earthbenders, meet Toph.
  71. Momo gets his own seat.
  72. Controlling the Avatar State was first explored in the Book Two premiere.
  73. Avatar 101: Aang has a major crush on Katara.
  74. It's either Katara or pure cosmic energy.
  75. While opening chakras, it's common to have lucid visions.
  76. This giant Aang is a lucid vision.
    Aang runs to save Katara

    Aang abandoning the pure cosmic energy for Katara.

  77. Glowing tattoos is a sign of the Avatar State.
  78. This image of Katara in trouble is not just a vision ...
  79. It's real.
  80. Bye-bye pure cosmic energy.
  81. Hello attachment.
  82. Behind-the-back, no-look earthbending!
  83. Earth running.
  84. Katara has hair-loopies ...
  85. ... And Hakoda has hair-danglies.
  86. This prison is the Dai Li's new base of operations.
  87. It's an even trade.

"The Crossroads of Destiny"

  1. Book Two finale happening now!
  2. That's Toph.
  3. Welcome to the statute storage room.
  4. ... Dank, underground cavern stores many of Ba Sing Se's finest statues.
  5. It's also the perfect place to plan the overthrow of a government.
  6. Keep your eye on this Dai Li agent with a scar ...
  7. We'll see him again later.
  8. Ty Lee is easily impressed.
  9. ... And she's a bit of a brown-noser.
  10. Uncle's life has dramatically changed over the years ...
  11. ... And more recently, so has Zuko's
  12. Oh Aang, the more you lie, the more chakras you block.
  13. This is the Earth King's ceremonial teahouse.
  14. ... But this isn't the Earth King.
  15. It's the Fire Princess.
  16. Uncle might be surrounded, but he remains calm.
  17. ... Because he's got a secret weapon.
    Iroh's fire breath

    Iroh using his fire breath to escape from Azula's trap.

  18. Uncle can breathe fire!
  19. That was the Earth King's favorite topiary.
  20. In a later episode, we find out how Uncle learned to breathe fire.
  21. An "Agni Kai" is a fire duel.
  22. Zuko received his scar from fighting in an Agni Kai.
  23. Fact: The Kyoshi Warriors aren't really into "talking about make up".
  24. These Crystal Catacombs are a part of "Old Ba Sing Se".
  25. Looks like Zuko and Katara are prison mates.
  26. Check it out! The kids' old house.
  27. It's still under repair.
  28. Recap: a few episodes back, Toph busted a giant hole in the wall.
  29. ... Just for fun.
  30. The last time the kids saw Iroh, he was just shot by Azula.
  31. Aang has already saved Zuko once.
  32. ... At the North Pole.
  33. Aang is good at seeing the "big picture".
  34. ... It's what makes him a good Avatar
  35. Anyone remember the guy with the scar?
  36. He's a bit of a blabber-mouth ...
  37. Rumor has it, he got his scar because he gave away too many secrets.
  38. Meditation is good for the mind and body.
  39. ... Besides, there's not much else to do in jail.
  40. Azula is a dynamic leader.
  41. Too bad she's not a good guy.
    Azula captures Kuei

    Azula completing her coup.

  42. These catacombs were once mined for their glowing crystals.
  43. The only way in and out of here is with earthbending ...
  44. So it's the perfect prison for non-earthbenders.
  45. This is the first time Zuko and Katara are alone together in the series.
  46. That ancient city is Old Ba Sing Se.
  47. Angry jerk = Zuko.
  48. Before Ba Sing Se was a sprawling metropolis ...
  49. ... It was a small, underground city carved by earthbenders.
  50. It's always good to seek advice from your elders ...
  51. ... And Aang has been talking to a lot of elders lately.
  52. General How is one of the "Council of Five".
  53. Looks like they'll be changing their name to the "Council of Four".
  54. Now they're down to the "Council of Three".
  55. General Sung, look out behind you!
  56. The "Council of Five" is officially no more.
  57. Ty Lee has a tendency to come on too strong.
  58. They're the Kyoshi Fakers!
  59. The dancing is also over.
  60. This episode was written by head writer Aaron Ehasz.
  61. Aaron wrote this finale and the finale for Book One.
  62. Azula has a special skill in identifying weaknesses in others.
  63. ... And covering up her own.
  64. It's Earth Queen Azula.
  65. Zuko isn't just scarred physically.
  66. ... He's also scarred emotionally.
  67. Duh!
  68. The spirit water was given to Katara by Master Pakku.
  69. This is the only time Zuko lets someone touch his scar.
  70. Bad timing.
    Zuko and Katara

    Katara preparing to attempt to heal Zuko's scar.

  71. Throughout Book Two, Zuko's attitude has improved.
  72. ... But old habits are hard to break.
  73. "Crossroads of Destiny" is the title of this finale.
  74. It's a dramatic title, for a dramatic episode.
  75. Previously, Zuko had a dream about Azula and Uncle pulling him in opposite directions.
  76. Of course, in that dream Uncle and Azula were dragons.
  77. Dreams are weird.
  78. This location is the grand central plaza of Old Ba Sing Se.
  79. Really hot fire can instantly vaporize water.
  80. ... At least in the Avatar World.
  81. Dual waterbending.
  82. Zuko has finally made up his mind.
  83. The angry jerk is back.
  84. ... And he's angrier than ever.
  85. Who's ready to see Toph's newest trick.
  86. Metal-bending!
  87. That was called a wind-Avatar body-slam.
  88. Just take a little off the side.
  89. Aang has mastered all the elements except for fire.
  90. This is one of the only times we see Zuko and Azula fighting on the same side.
  91. They're usually fighting against each other.
  92. Zuko has changed, then changed again.
  93. So much changing.
  94. Firebending rockets ...
  95. ... Versus crystallized Aang.
  96. Note: Crystal is extremely fragile.
  97. It's not so great for armor.
  98. Some bears just aren't cut out for the circus.
  99. When you're messing with the Avatar's girlfriend ...
  100. You're messing with the Avatar.
  101. Hey, no fair!
  102. Katara is doing the "octopus form".
    Aang dead

    Katara holding Aang's dead body.

  103. Remember ... detachment means control over the Avatar State.
  104. Hero moment!
  105. Hero moment over.
  106. Recap: If the Avatar dies while in the Avatar State ...
  107. ... All past and future Avatars will cease to exist.
  108. Water-elevator.
  109. Is Zuko having second thoughts?
  110. ... We'll find out in Book Three.

Goofs

  • Avatar Extras for both "The Cave of Two Lovers" and "The Crossroads of Destiny" state Katara was the only person who touched Zuko's scar; however, Mai also touches his scar in "The Awakening".
  • Avatar Extras for "The Chase" states "Toph isn't the first character to chew on wheat. Anybody remember Jet?" However, the only episode Jet had been in at that point was "Jet", in which he only chews on a twig. He does not chew on wheat until "The Serpent's Pass", four chapters later.
  • Avatar Extras for "The Chase" incorrectly refers to "Tu Zin" as "Tu-Zen".
  • Avatar Extras for "The Desert" states that Iroh's injury was the result of Azula blasting him with lightning. This is incorrect, as she blasted him with her signature blue firebending.
  • Avatar Extras for "Appa's Lost Days" incorrectly refers to the episode "The Warriors of Kyoshi" as "The Kyoshi Warriors".

References

  1. Bryan Konietzko on the Blu-ray commentary for "The Sting".

See also

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