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Unagi

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Earth Kingdom emblem
Unagi

Unagi
General information
Habitat

Kyoshi Island, Earth Kingdom

Status

Active

Uses

Extinguishing fires, execution

Chronological information
First appearance

"The Warriors of Kyoshi"
(only appearance)

The unagi is a powerful, carnivorous eel capable of firing large jets of water at a high speed.[1]

History

While visiting Kyoshi Island, Aang went surfing on elephant koi. However, the unagi began eating the elephant koi, including the one on which Aang was surfing, sending him into the water. The creature proceeded to chase Aang, but he managed to escape to the beach before he could be eaten. Later, after he was captured by the Kyoshi Warriors, they threatened to feed Aang his friends to the unagi.

Later, Aang returned to the sea, wishing to impress a crowd of adoring girls; Katara arrived on scene and beckoned him out of the water. However, before he could reach the shore, the unagi lifted Aang out of the water and sprayed him with a large jet of water. The eel attempted to eat Aang, but he was saved by Katara.

As Aang was leaving on Appa, he decided to jump into the water below. The unagi emerged, and, using the barbels located on either side of the eel's head, Aang forced it to spew water to extinguish the flames consuming the nearby village.[2]

Anatomy

The unagi's body is long and eel-like, with smooth, dark gray-brown skin and no scales. Pointed finlets line the back of its body from head to tail.

A large dorsal fin protrudes from the top of its head and appears to be made of approximately seven cartilage structures with connective webbing. The unagi can expand and contract this fin. Below that, on either side of its head, are four bright yellow stripes, possibly its gills.

The unagi has bright green eyes and a mouth with sixteen pairs of sharp, interlocking teeth. The creature has two long barbels on either side of its mouth. Inside its body, below its head, are glands that it uses to blast water at its prey.[3]

Behavior

Unagi spewing water

Aang was able to entice the unagi into spewing water to put out widespread fires on Kyoshi Island.

The unagi is a very dangerous creature. Being a carnivore, it will eat almost anything that strays into its path, though elephant koi are its food of choice. It stuns its prey using powerful blasts of water.

Because of its vicious nature, the people of Kyoshi Island do not swim in the bay where it lives. However, unagis do have an instinctive fear of anything bigger than them.[3]

Connection

The unagi appears to be based on a giant freshwater eel. It also finds its roots in old legends of serpent like sea monsters that roamed the oceans.

Trivia

  • Unagi (Katakana: ウナギ; Hiragana: うなぎ) is the Japanese word for freshwater eel; it is a popular Japanese seafood and is often eaten as a sushi dish.

References

  1. From older Avatar: The Last Airbender official site, originally on Nick.com (link). No longer updated.
  2. Malis, Nick (writer) & Volpe, Giancarlo (director). (March 4, 2005). "The Warriors of Kyoshi". Avatar: The Last Airbender. Season 1. Episode 4. Nickelodeon.
  3. 3.0 3.1 Avatar Extras for "The Warriors of Kyoshi" on Nicktoons Network.

See also

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