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Kyoshi Warriors

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This article is about the organization. For the episode with a similar name, see "The Warriors of Kyoshi".
Ty Lee with the Kyoshi Warriors
Kyoshi Warriors
General information
Leader(s)

Suki

Notable members
Founder(s)

Kyoshi

Headquarters

Kyoshi Island

Affiliation
Purpose
  • Defend Kyoshi Island
  • Defend the Earth Kingdom (spring - summer 100 AG)
  • Security detail for the Fire Lord (since 101 AG)
  • Women empowerment
Chronological information
First appearance

"The Warriors of Kyoshi"

Last appearance

The Search Part 1

The Kyoshi Warriors are an order of female warriors named after Avatar Kyoshi, who founded them to protect her homeland, Kyoshi Island.[2] With their unique and individual fighting style, these elite fighters ensured the safety and isolationism of their homeland during the Hundred Year War. However, when Avatar Aang visited the island in late 99 AG, he inspired a group of warriors, led by Suki, to travel to the Earth Kingdom and help the defenseless there.[3] Even though most members of this group were imprisoned by the Fire Nation after a lost fight against Princess Azula's team, Suki was later freed and helped to end the war as part of Team Avatar. After the war, Suki's Kyoshi Warriors continued their service and in 101 AG, they volunteered to become the Fire Lord's bodyguards.

Though their fighting style and clothing mimic those of Avatar Kyoshi, they seemingly did not implement any of the bending arts in their physical movements. They are clad in ornate, armored, green kimonos, metal headdresses, and white-faced makeup designed to intimidate opponents. The Kyoshi Warriors used metal fans as their main weapons like Avatar Kyoshi, but also implemented katanas and retractable shields. The warriors' most prominent fighting style was not about strength, but rather about using their opponents' force against them. Primarily, the warriors dealt with the disorderly traders and travelers who, after a night of carousing in the port of Kyoshi, often stumbled into the village and caused trouble.[4]

The warrior's uniform has a gold insignia that represents the honor of the warrior's heart and the silk threads symbolize the brave blood that flows through their veins.[2]

History

Early history

Prior to Kyoshi Island's separation from the Earth Kingdom mainland, Avatar Kyoshi witnessed women being mistreated by pushy male passersby. She had often defended the women in the village's seaside marketplace and endeavored to teach them defensive combat. Within a few years, Kyoshi had gathered a small band of disciples consisting of fisherwomen, weavers, and homemakers who eventually developed into the first Kyoshi Warriors.[5]

The female warriors do not take kindly to training outsiders or men in their unique methods of fighting. However, Sokka was admitted to the group despite possessing both of the aforementioned qualities on the condition that he had to adhere to all of the traditions of the female Kyoshi Warrior, including wearing their style of armor and traditional make-up. In the organization's history, there have been only a few male warriors. The only other known outsider to join them is Ty Lee, who was born in the Fire Nation.[6]

Hundred Year War

Zuko and Kyoshi Warriors

The Kyoshi Warriors cornered Prince Zuko during his invasion of Kyoshi Island.

Although the Kyoshi Warriors had long remained neutral in the Hundred Year War against the Earth Kingdom, their ideals changed after Avatar Aang arrived on the island in late 99 AG. Chasing the Air Nomad, Prince Zuko and his troops attacked Suki's village and forced the warriors to defend their home. After repelling the attack with the aid of Team Avatar,[3] Suki's band of Kyoshi Warriors decided to assist the Earth Kingdom military in its attempts to fight against the Fire Nation. The warriors did not enter the front lines, but instead served as guards for the ferries to Ba Sing Se.[7] They later were defeated while trying to protect Appa from capture at the hands of Princess Azula, Mai, and Ty Lee, though they did buy enough time for the flying bison to flee.[2]

In Ba Sing Se, Azula, Mai, and Ty Lee infiltrated the city disguised as members of the Kyoshi Warriors.[1] The real Kyoshi Warriors were imprisoned following their defeat.[8] The Kyoshi Warriors were sent to the Capital City Prison, with the exception of their leader Suki, who was taken to the Boiling Rock Prison.[9] Suki was eventually freed by Sokka and Zuko with the help of Mai.[10]

Ty Lee and Kyoshi Warriors

Ty Lee joined the Kyoshi Warriors near the end of the Hundred Year War.

The rest of the Kyoshi Warriors were finally freed after the Hundred Year War ended and Suki resumed her role as their leader. They were in full uniform at Zuko's coronation and even contained a new member: Ty Lee. She noted the bond that she had formed with the warriors while they in prison. Ty Lee also provided the Kyoshi Warriors with some lessons in the art of chi blocking.[6]

As the Fire Lord's bodyguards

A year after the end of the Hundred Year War, Mai asked the Kyoshi Warriors for help with the security of the Fire Nation Royal Palace following a series of assassination attempts, most notably by Kori, the daughter of Yu Dao's mayor, which had put in evidence the inefficiency of the palace bodyguards.[11]

The Kyoshi Warriors were tasked by Zuko to oversee Azula when she was conversing with her father and they were quick to intervene when she attacked her brother. They left their post on Zuko's inquiry, however, as he wanted to give his family some privacy. They continued escorting the Fire Lord, ensuring his safety on the palace grounds, and followed his orders. After Zuko left with Azula and part of Team Avatar, they remained at the Fire Nation Royal Palace to assist the interim Fire Lord, Iroh.[12]

Attire

Kyoshi Warriors clothing

"The silk threads symbolize the brave blood that flows through our veins. The gold insignia represents the honor of the warrior's heart."

The Kyoshi Warriors dressed in adorned metal headdresses and heavily armored green kimonos and wore face paint while on duty. This uniform was designed to resemble the attire that Avatar Kyoshi wore during her life, as well as her face paint that was meant to intimidate opponents.[4] The golden insignia represented the honor of a warrior's heart and the silk threads symbolized the brave blood that flowed through their veins.[3] Wearing such attire is a high honor for the Kyoshi Warriors.

Metal headdress

Initially, all warriors besides Suki wore a simple green headband. During and after the spring of 100 AG, however, the warriors wore distinct, individualized headdresses, allowing one to discern specific warriors, such as the unnamed warrior who was present with Suki and also when being hugged by Ty Lee at Zuko's coronation.[6]

Weapons

The Kyoshi Warriors utilized a wide range of weapons in combat, varying from simple fans to deadly katanas.

Fans

Kyoshi Warrior fans

The Kyoshi Warriors are known to use fans for offensive purposes.

The Kyoshi Warriors used a set of two metal fans in imitation of Avatar Kyoshi.[13] They wielded these fans in conjunction with a specialized fighting style that was based on the concept of turning an opponent's energy against them and exploiting openings. These implements were used for defense, but they could also be thrown elliptically as boomerangs or propelled as projectiles. These fans were the primary weapons of the Kyoshi Warriors and usually the first to be used in battle. Later, when teaching Sokka about the way of the Kyoshi Warriors, Suki said that it was like an extension of the arm.[3]

Shield

The Kyoshi Warriors each carried a round retractable shield that could be combined to protect the entire unit. The combined shields were capable of withstanding a fire blast from Azula.[2] They bear a likeness to the Earth Kingdom's emblem.

Katana

Azula vs Suki

Suki attempted to use a katana against Princess Azula during their fight.

Each of the Kyoshi Warriors also carried a katana, which is a long, thin sword. The blade is moderately curved and single edged. Although rarely used in combat, the Kyoshi Warriors did employ katanas when battling Azula and her elite team,[2] where they proved to be well-suited for both self-defense and offense.

Trivia

  • With the white face, red lips and accents, and black eye and brow streaks, their makeup is a cross between two traditional Japanese styles, Geisha and Kabuki, more dramatic than the former but less than the latter.
    • The green kimonos are inspired by Kabuki theater.
  • Sokka is the only known male to be trained, to any extent, by the Kyoshi Warriors. He is also the only known male to have ever worn their uniform.
  • Their makeup is water resistant.[7]
  • The Kyoshi Warriors' use of fans is similar to Tessenjutsu, a martial art that is characterized by the use of war fans.
  • Their weaponry is similar to that of the samurai warrior, making them one of the few groups in Avatar: The Last Airbender to be based on Japanese culture; for example, katanas are primarily used by the samurai.
  • All known members of the Kyoshi Warriors are nonbenders.
  • While there is a band of Kyoshi Warriors in every village on Kyoshi Island,[4] the only division that has been seen is the one that protected Oyaji's village, lead by Suki.

References

  1. 1.0 1.1 O'Bryan, John (writer) & Spaulding, Ethan (director). (November 17, 2006). "The Earth King". Avatar: The Last Airbender. Season 2. Episode 18. Nickelodeon.
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 Ehasz, Elizabeth Welch (writer) & Volpe, Giancarlo (director). (October 13, 2006). "Appa's Lost Days". Avatar: The Last Airbender. Season 2. Episode 16. Nickelodeon.
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 Malis, Nick (writer) & Volpe, Giancarlo (director). (March 4, 2005). "The Warriors of Kyoshi". Avatar: The Last Airbender. Season 1. Episode 4. Nickelodeon.
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 From older Avatar: The Last Airbender official site, originally on Nick.com (link). No longer updated.
  5. Yang, Gene (writer), Hicks, Faith Erin (artist), Peter, Cris (colorist), Heisler, Michael (letterer). "Shells" (May 3, 2014), Dark Horse Comics.
  6. 6.0 6.1 6.2 DiMartino, Michael Dante, Konietzko, Bryan (writers) & Dos Santos, Joaquim (director). (July 19, 2008). "Sozin's Comet, Part 4: Avatar Aang". Avatar: The Last Airbender. Season 3. Episode 21. Nickelodeon.
  7. 7.0 7.1 DiMartino, Michael Dante, Hamilton, Joshua (writers) & Spaulding, Ethan (director). (September 15, 2006). "The Serpent's Pass". Avatar: The Last Airbender. Season 2. Episode 12. Nickelodeon.
  8. Ehasz, Aaron (writer) & Dos Santos, Joaquim (director). (November 30, 2007). "The Day of Black Sun, Part 2: The Eclipse". Avatar: The Last Airbender. Season 3. Episode 11. Nickelodeon.
  9. Chan, May (writer) & Dos Santos, Joaquim (director). (July 16, 2008). "The Boiling Rock, Part 1". Avatar: The Last Airbender. Season 3. Episode 14. Nickelodeon.
  10. Hamilton, Joshua (writer) & Spaulding, Ethan (director). (July 16, 2008). "The Boiling Rock, Part 2". Avatar: The Last Airbender. Season 3. Episode 15. Nickelodeon.
  11. DiMartino, Michael Dante; Konietzko, Bryan; Yang, Gene (writer), Sasaki of Gurihiru (penciling, inking), Kawano of Gurihiru (colorist), Heisler, Michael; Comicraft (letterer). The Promise Part 1 (January 25, 2012), Dark Horse Comics.
  12. DiMartino, Michael Dante; Konietzko, Bryan; Yang, Gene (writer), Sasaki of Gurihiru (penciling, inking), Kawano of Gurihiru (colorist), Heisler, Michael; Comicraft (letterer). The Search Part 1 (March 20, 2013), Dark Horse Comics.
  13. O'Bryan, John (writer) & MacMullan, Lauren (director). (April 28, 2006). "Avatar Day". Avatar: The Last Airbender. Season 2. Episode 5. Nickelodeon.

See also

Start a Discussion Discussions about Kyoshi Warriors

  • Did Kuvira conquer Kyoshi too?

    2 messages
    • So do you guys think Kuvira conquard Kyoshi Island and if so what do you think happend to the Kyoshi warriors after it?
    • 1) From what we can tell, Kyoshi is taken. All of the territories were taken except Zaofu, and I assume it was either 1 of the 2 states f...
  • Lin's father theory

    114 messages
    • Jayking116 wrote:Avatar Litz wrote:I think it's impossible for Sokka to be Lin's father because that would make Tenzin and Lin cousins and t...
    • Jayking116 wrote:Avatar Litz wrote:I think it's impossible for Sokka to be Lin's father because that would make Tenzin and Lin cousins and t...

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