Hey everybody! >V< I just want to premise the review by apologizing for not uploading this review Blog on Thursday. I’ve pretty busy with homework from college and IRL work too, but no worrying, as I have watch 3 episodes and will have 3 additional reviews ready for in the next few days! ¬_¬ *fingers crossed* Anyways let us get right to it! >V<
“The Southern Air Temple”
Review“The Southern Air Temple”, oh, sounds like this going to be an interesting episode, especially after being met with a beautiful Sunrise/Landscape backdrop. And with beauty is Aangs excitement as he’ll be returning home, which skeptically destroyed by Katara statement that; “a lot can change in a hundred years”! That small statement made me, well skeptical, this was definitely going to be an interesting and emotional episode! ,0_0,
After the ‘old Snake in the Sleeping Bag’ skit, we then pop over to see Zuko and Friends, I really need to copyright that, or at least stop typing it...as they come into a harbour, owned, commanded, controlled...by Captain Zhao, oh sorry Zhao, Commander. Then with awkwardness, Zuko and Uncle Iroh attempt to explain (without actually spilling the truth of finding the Avatar) what happened with this wrecked ship humour, which actually quite funny, especially the retired General Uncle. >V<
Flying over the clouds, of yet another beautiful background, honestly like 2 episodes the Art for this show leveled-up dramatically, I hope the keep it up! =_= The hungry Sokka and Team finally come-up to the mountain range before Aangs home. And it here where it gets knocked hard on your head, ‘something bad is gonna be shown’, yeah a concussion! 0^0 But with some denial, Aang tell us and himself that it’s all gonna be alright… And then *BANG*, the sight of the Southern Air Temple, rendered (again) beautifully, especially (you know I type “especially waay too much) for 2004, or was it 5...not really sure, anyways, the Temple looks awesome, and really does make you go; OOOOOOHHHHHH! 0o0
Back to the docks with Zuko and...Uncle in Zhao’s tent as he ends his great speech explanation of how the Fire Nation will “win the War”. It here when I noticed something, Zuko is kinda, realistic in his views of the War, he’s not exactly a Fire Nation follower like I thought he might be, and when Zhao says”I can see the Sea hasn’t tempered his tongue”, it gave me goosebumps. Because it hints that outspoken people towards the government is an oddity to the Fire Nation, which kinda reminded me of late Edo Japan!? *CRASH*, created by Uncles clumsiness as he knocks over the stationed weapons, which is a such a funny response to the Zhaos serious question to Zuko on the Avatar. >V< “My fault, entirely”, reeaally…? `O.o In a twist, after Zhao game of 20 questions, we discover that he ordered his men, to interrogate Zuko’s men, behind Zuko’s back, wow, what trust! And in quite an awesome but sinister scene, Zhao asks, “now remind me, how, exactly was your ship damaged”? I loved this scene, because it really showed Zuko’s desperation of capturing Aang, as well as his future obstacles, primarily being Commander Zhao. Also, those intense red were just sooo DANGEROUS, *cough* sorry…
As we fade back to Team Aang at the Air Temple, Aangs shows them around, with some depression on how things have changed. But Sokka and Katara discover a Fire Nation helmet, which might explain why they aren’t any Airbenders running around the joint, wow that sound pretty gansta…? o.0 After Katara thinks about, she uses her Waterbending to cover it up, in a notion of how she properly thought when the Fire Nation killed her mother, and I kinda have to side with Sokka, he needs to know, it’ll be difficult sure but, he’s not stupid, he’s bound to find out eventually!? As both bro’ and sis’ discuss we the cut to a nice flashback of Aang and monk Gyatso (< er is that right?). Who talks about “gooey centers” and, the monks mistake of telling Aang, that he’s the Avatar before he’s 16. Er, wait mistake, wow, finally, a kids show that understand that you telling a child that he or she is the saviour, is a BAD IDEA!!! \_/ Then the best scene, throwing pies at monks with Airbending, I would’ve done that too! >V< Oh, and we also get some exposition of a chamber where he’ll meet someone when he’s ready or something -- CAKE INCOMING *SPLAT!*
Cutting to Zuko, Zhao AND FRIENDS, hehe, Zhao smugly tells how Zuko was bested by a boy, who the god-damn Avatar!? I mean if he can do better than, wait! Oh, I see, Zhao wants Aang for his own glory!
Once Sokka, Katara and Aang go into the great room of...statues! Haha, >V< aw I laughed soo hard after this CGI door reveil, and I still haven’t the scooby-ist on why I laughed hard for a good 15-20 minutes!? “Who are all these people”? I asked that too, which is quickly answered as them being Aangs past live, gee-wow-za, thata be a lota lives. Aangs stares at a statue of Avatar Roku, a firebender Avatar? I would say, I liked this reveil, even tho I first thought it was kinda lame! ¬_¬ DINNER! I mean Lemar…!? We then get a Aang vs. Sokka chase scene which, surprisingly ends quickly, as Sokka isn’t a bender, and kinda has a disadvantage. But saying that Asami kicks ass, and she’s a non-bender, actually nah, Sokka’s at a disadvantage.
After the music from episode one has done it’s thing, we get a surprise Zhao shot in a sudden cut! Him and Zuko bicker for abit before then an argument, with some devastating information dumped on our laps, by the sound of it, Zuko got his scar by his own father, sheesh, I’ve of family affairs but geez, that, just crazy! Then KABANG! AGNI KAI at Sunset, yes, awesomeness is about to pick-up!!! >V<
Back Aang and the chase is still on as Aang run after the little lemar into a...holy shit… Wow, erm, yeah, I think this would’ve scared me as a kid, I mean I’m still scared of spiders, or is that arachnophobia!? But honestly this such a horrific scene, especially with Gyatso lying as skeleton, with his mouth open, but I this should be scaring, it should be such a horrific scene. and we should be aware of this straightly! It’s not often an animated series for kids goes into this area of death. With this dark scene, comes the light in Aang Avatar State, which glows across the other lands of the Earth Kingdom, Water Tribes (well one of them) and the Fire Nation as the Avatar has returned! In emotional state of rage and deep sadness, Aang raises into the air and blasts Sokka back, with Katara saving the day by calming the raging avatar. I’m going to be honest, I didn’t really get many emotions from this scene except Aangs rage and the realization of the Fire Nation now knowing that the Avatar has come back. And I did have a problem with the scene cutting soo quick to Zuko. I think this scene should’ve played out fully before the Agni Kai. Oh --
Agni Kai time, get your popcorn ready, because it’s time to get ready to RRRRUUUMMMMBBLE!!! >V< Man, I loved this scene, a great sequence of animation and even Martial Arts, they’re some recognizable martial art moves in the choreography. And those reds, again the art style here in this episode it just beautiful. The angles, great, and the *CHUCKA’ CHUCKA’ CHUCKA’* music just helped the scene fantastically. This was just great scene in just a pure technical standpoint, let alone in it’s point of (yet again great) character development, and with Zuko, the villain, just some great work all round. Oh and Zuko won btw! >V<
We then cut back to the contrasting purple scene of Aangs rage, there was a lot of colour in this episode, maybe it’s symbolical, but unfortunately I don’t know at this stage, maybe when I’m finished with the seasons I should watch back and see it that’s the case. =_= Anyways, with Katara’s “we’re your family speech”, it calms the emotional Aang, who realizes he’s the Airbender, it’s then implemented Aang needs to talk to Roku. As Aang and team inherit a new member into the team with “Momo”, our heros leave, ‘in laughter’...? And the episode ends with blue and purple clouded sky…*sigh* ok, this episode was a slight disappointment.
-- Ok, let me explain why I wasn't completely enthralled with this episode, I really liked, no LOVED the scenes with Zuko, just some great writing, great animation and an awesome insight into the Fire Nation traditions with the ‘Agni Kai’ scene, really brilliant work! But it’s the, Aang bits that kinda rubbed me the wrong way, the visual were strong, in fact very strong, but the way Aang handles it is kinda rushed, and I know it’s a 20-25 minute episode, but I think it should been slightly more gentle with what Aangs say after being calmed by Katara. And having Aang laugh is abit UURGH!!! But it did end strong with and Aang looking back on the Temple, in a visual, ‘moving on’ scene.
So, I thought this was another great episode, and I think it deserves a 3 and a Half Stars out of 5, just some beautiful art within some great animation, with a slight let down on how this episode tackled Aangs emotions was at times quite weak, I wanted a strong implication on his pain, as the voice has done a very good job so far, but it was still a very good episode, with some great development of Zuko, who is level with Aang on being my favorite character so far.
Thanks for reading >V<, I hope you enjoyed my this review! =_= If you have any feedback, please leave the in the comments below, and tell me about your first time watching this episode.