We all know the debate, the never ending tale. Katara and Zuko had so much build up, so much chemistry, the potential was there: the heat, the attraction, all the makings to have our lovely characters have a happy ever after together. Mike and Bryon however had different thoughts. We all know who won the cannon universe, and while I do love the Kataang children, I still believe that Zutara was meant to be. I cannot help but feel cheated in the sense that Taang had the chance to live on in the fleeting romance that was Linzen. Even if they did not stay together for the whole marriage and children part of life I do believe these two shared an epic romance. A romance that would have fit Aang and Toph to a 'T'. I love the idea of Aang and Toph together, but I do not believe they would have made it through the long haul either. Lin Bei Fong is Toph 2.0, and while I agree that Tenzin is much too serious to be a true Aang Junior, I have to admit that there are many similarities between father and son. There is NO substitute for Zutara. Makorra is not it! Don't misunderstand me please. I do like Korra and Mako together, they are adorable. But they are not the stand in for Zutara, not by a mile. They didn't have the character build up that Zuko and Katara did. They did not have a common ground for a deeper connection (i.e. Fire Nation took their mothers away) right away, that Zuko and Katara did. I will concede that in the cave scene there is very little dialogue and emotional connection to really work with, but the foundation for a common bond, a tragedy that they both share, was laid down there. Understanding, comfort, and love would have been given from both sides if they had been given the proper chance to cultivate it. Why would Katara hold such a grudge, not only when Zuko first joined the Gaang, but after in the comic book series? What I cannot understand is why Katara, a girl who is so loving, and motherly by nature, is so cold with Zuko? Why could she never get over his betrayal in the catacombs under Ba Sing Se? Why could she not see past the hurt she felt? Zuko took her to find the man who killed her mother; he helped her get closure, and he was willing to let her extract her revenge however she saw fit to. He did not try to influence her one way or another because of his beliefs about it, it was her mother that was killed, it was something that she had been hurt by and dealing with for years and ZUKO understood it was not his place to decide for her how she dealt with that pain; he was a good friend who knew that she just needed his support and understanding. Another point, Zuko literally saved her life! Yet she remained closed off and frosty with the Fire Lord in 'The Search'. Why? My theory: Katara sensed they could've had something magical, something that poets would praise, a love that would become legend, a royal romance that even the Ember Island Players wouldn't have been able to botch up, because the world would know how devoted Fire Lord Zuko was to his Water Tribe bride; how Water Bending Master Katara passionately loved her fierce fire-bender. So why didn't Katara chose to be with Zuko? Alas I believe that Katara did love Aang. Not in a motherly way that many Zutarians love to poke fun at, and not in a sisterly way either, Katara is strong and stubborn, if she felt just motherly or sisterly love for our favorite Avatar no amount of prodding would have gotten her to stay romantically involved with him. I do believe however that she stayed with Aang more out of a sense of duty, not because it was an epic romance that they shared. Gran-Gran told her that her destiny was intertwined with the Avatar. Aunt Wu predicted that she would marry a powerful bender, and who is more powerful than the Avatar? Even Sokka teased her about Aang. Now this is just my opinion on it all so bear with me here. Katara, being a naive fourteen year old girl, did not realize many things. Your destiny is always intertwined with people who touch your very soul. Gran-Gran told Katara and Sokka BOTH that THEIR destinies were intertwined with the Avatar, a fact many people like to over look. Aang touched many souls, his destiny intertwined with many people's: Sokka, Toph, Zuko and even Suki, to name a few, and none of them felt the need to become romantically involved with him; as a mere child who does not understand true all consuming love and who also holds her grandmother in high regard, any impressionable girl, even one as strong-willed as Katara, could misconstrued the intertwining of destinies, thinking that it meant she must stay with Aang forever, and what better way to do that than to marry the Avatar. Aunt Wu told Katara that she would have a great romance and marry a powerful bender. To be Cannon compliant for a bit I want to point out that unfortunately, my romantic comrades, this does not mean that it had to be the same man for both, true Zuko and Katara never had an official romance but if you have not gathered my now, they did undeniable share a something. Dante Bosco, the actor who plays Zuko, released a recording of Zuko saying that he did fall in love with Katara, that he (Zuko) would always love her, in the cannon universe who is to say that Katara herself didn't fall in love with Zuko at the same time? People do not need to be in a relationship to experience a great romance. In cannon Katara married Aang, a powerful bender, so Aunt Wu wasn't wrong. In my opinion though the writers could have paired Zuko and Katara together and Aunt Wu still would have been right, Zuko did become a powerful bender did he not? If Aunt Wu had said that Katara would marry the most powerful bender in the world then there would have been no doubt in any of our minds exactly who she was meant to be with. It was also released that Zuko was originally going to be the love interest for Katara, and I believe it. There are just too many innuendoes and subtle hints in the series that point to Zutara to be a mere coincidence. Bryke knew they could've had Zutara be cannon, and if their main audience was not prepubescent children who, like their hero Avatar Aang, did not fully grasp the concept of build up, heat, and sexual tension, there is no doubt in my mind we would have had our Zutara cannon. Another point I want to make in support of Zutara and yes I am going to bash Aang a bit here, so bear with me readers, is that I know that Zuko no matter what, whether his children were fire benders, non benders, or water benders, he would love them and cherish ALL of them no matter what. The actions of BOTH his parents when it came to favoritism would be the very first thing that Zuko would avoid as a father. He would understand better than anyone what favoring one child over another can do to a child's development (plus I doubt he would want another Azula running around either); he'd do whatever in his power to avoid that his children feeling unwanted and unloved, feelings he knew all too well as a child, plus it would more than likely be a personal goal of his to give his children the childhood he never fully got to enjoy, don't you think? My view on "dadko" or Daddy Zuko holds true if he had married Katara, as well as in Bryke's cannon. His cannon daughter, the Fire Lord in Korra, is one lucky girl to have Zuko as a father, as well as any other children cannon Zuko might have. After seeing season two of Korra, I felt that my indignation with Katara ending up with Aang to be even more justified. I know no parent is perfect, and no childhood comes with just happy memories, but there is no excuse that could possibly justify why Aang was so neglectful with his two eldest children just because they were not the air-benders that he so desperately wanted. It is alluded that he took Tenzin all over the world, from Kyoshi Island to Ember Island, sharing with him the fun and excitement that he experienced as a child. How hard would it have been to make even ONE of these father-son air-bending bonding trips into a family vacation, compete with the "love of his life" Katara and their two older children?? I understand that his duties would take up much of his time, but in my opinion a good father would make time for ALL his children not just his 'successor'. Thank the Spirits these cannon children have Katara as a mother or I believe they would have been royally screwed, and because of Bumi and Kya I am just a bit okay with Katara marrying Aang. Now I love Aang don't get me wrong, but I put this question to you, if he loved Katara as much as he obsessively claimed, why didn't he favor Kya as well as Tenzin? She's his little girl, a water bender like her mother, not to mention she is the spitting image of her, so why would Aang only favor Tenzin? Usually when anonly daughter so resembles her mother, if her father is as hopelessly devoted to his wife as Aang seemed to be to Katara why then would Kya be pushed aside as well? If Aang had married anyone else, especially a non bender, my theory is he would have been the one repopulating the Air Nomad population, just like Tenzin and Pemma in our cannon universe. Maybe then everyone would know that he had more than one child; if you know what I am referring to I hope you were just as offended about that as I was. The Air accolates thinking that Bumi and Kya, Aang's two other children, were Tenzin's servants? That wasn't even funny, it was just sad. Even if Aang chose not to take them to the temple where he grew up, wouldn't a proud father have mentioned his two other children to people he obviously worked pretty closely with? I mean he'd have to work closely with these people if they helped him rebuild the temple of his childhood right? I love Avatar Aang, but I hate Aang as a father to Bumi and Kya, it wasn't their fault they weren't born Air Benders Aang!! Now onto my main point of this rant. Katara and Zuko were meant to be. Anyway, while I'll never accept Kataang in my heart of hearts because Zuko and Katara were supposed to be, with connection, chemistry, and their beautiful steam babies, I have the conclusion that Bryke just couldn't deal with so much awesome in one family, because we all know their gene pool would have been amazing in cannon, plus they probably wanted to split the awesome parenting so that more children could feel the love. Zutara will never die, so long as there are those of us who still believe! One final note, I hope Zuko did NOT marry Mai. No offensive intended to Mai, she's awesome, she is one of my favorite charters, but I just don't like her and Zuko together. Not in a marriage anyway, they compliment each other to a fault; both are way too depressed on their own to be of any help healing the other (post-war for Zuko, and post-prison for Mai) and both of these characters need someone who can heal them, someone who will understand their scars and traumas, they both deserve that. They both need a significant other who can bring them out of their depressive thoughts, not feed into it like Zuko and Mai do to each other. My top pick as Zuko's cannon Fire Lady? Please don't start with the projectiles, but I hope it's Suki. I have many reasons, that maybe I'll share on here soon, but I think they'd complement each other in a way that is completely different to how Mai and Sokka, each respectively do. Before the flames start, no I don't think Sokka would be too hurt about it, because Suki would never be unfaithful to Sokka, and Zuko would not steal his best friends girl. Therefore Sokka and Suki would have to break up and given a sufficient amount of time (i.e. when Sokka writes to Zuko about a new lady love, which given Sokka's personality and penchant for falling for a pretty face, wouldn't be all that long of a time) Zuko might then allow himself to grow feelings for his friend Suki. Given how much time they have been spending together in "The Search" I don't feel this is a far fetched idea, but alas to each is own.
Thank you so much for reading all my ramblings. I would LOVE to hear y'alls opinion of my thoughts so please leave a comment, I promise I will reply!