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The Avatar Nostalgiblog II: Sokka

Welcome to the second part of The Avatar Nostalgiblog. Since my last blog as done far better than expected, being third in the Popular Blog Posts (it was second for most of the week), I've decided to continue the weekly series as long as nothing comes up and my homework load doesn't rise above waist level. So, expect these most every Friday/Saturday with a new topic to discuss.

As you can probably guess by the title, I'm going slightly away from my last two blog post topics; we're drifting away from relationships (since Kataang is really the only major one from the first series) and focusing on everybody's favorite boomerang-throwing, sarcastic-joke spewing, meat-loving, space-sword wielding Water Tribe Warrior, Sokka.

Before we get started, I'd like to say that this isn't going to be a super in-depth report on Sokka's character; this is just going to be me talking about what I think about Sokka's personality, why he is what he is, and why he isn't just Bolin's predecessor.

We all know Sokka as the carnivorous guy who likes to think he's in charge and whose unintentionally self-inflicted pain makes us all laugh. But there's far more to Sokka than just that. At a very young age, Sokka lost his mother and later saw his father leave with all the men of the Tribe, not knowing if he would ever see him again. His last moment with his father was of Hakoda entrusting the safety of the Tribe in his hands; Sokka took that to heart, and played it out in his own way, by attempting to train 6 year olds and making a watchtower out of snow. But he has guts; going up against 5 or 6 Fire Nation warriors and a war ship with face paint and a bone spear. He looks out for the safety of the Tribe above all else, even if that means risking his life against unknown enemies.

Now, what is it about Sokka that makes us laugh? This is what sets him apart from Bolin. Bolin is a very childish, carefree guy who doesn't take much of anything seriously, cracking jokes to try and lighten the mood or make them the center of attention (which isn't always the case); it's a very realistic style of a comical person, and I'm sure all of us could point out 2 or 3 people like that in our own lives. Sokka, however, lives in the "slapstick" style of comedy, with a bit of Karma coming to bit him in the butt now and then. That style can be usually called a more "childish" type of comedy, as it's seen in many shows aimed at a younger audience, but it's executed very well for a family audience in ATLA. All of Sokka's actual "jokes" were more cringe-worthy than laugh-out-loud funny. I personally prefer Bolin's comedy style in general, (not his character, just the way he acts), mostly because I can find it relatable and realistic, however, because Bolin had so little screen time to play on many great jokes, and Sokka was such a deep person as well as funny and spastic, Sokka remains one of my all-time favorite characters.

Sokka, just like the rest, seemed to mature as the series progressed, but he still has his unforgettable moments, like proclaiming science and giving romance advice throughout The Fortune Teller, getting high on cactus juice in The Desert, pouring out poetry and propagating problems (see what I did there?) in Tales of Ba Sing Se, and his days as Wang Fire in The Headband. He had his deep moments too, like saving the town from Jet, making the decision in The Library to get the comet's date, him opening up to Suki in The Serpent's Pass, and, most notably, him earning his place in Team Avatar (in his own eyes) in Sokka's Master. His plans and strategies are notable throughout the entire show (Imprisoned and The Drill) and his bravery is shown when he fearlessly leads the army into the heart of the Fire Nation in a failed surprise attack during the eclipse. But, in the end, our last memory of Sokka is one that brings a smile; showcasing his "amazing" artistic skills to the entire Team Avatar in the last part of the last episode (most notably for making Suki firebend and giving Katara Momo's ears).

Sokka may be a slap-stick meat lover, but he's also far deeper than most characters in other shows, especially for being mostly comic relief. His first girlfriend became an immortal spirit of the moon, and he met his second girlfriend after being ambushed, tied up, and suggested being fed to a giant sea monster by her. He acts like a spaz, freaks out at minor provocations, and names fluffy creatures he finds as "Foo Foo Cuddly Poops". Overall, he's an amazingly well built character, who, as I stated earlier, remains today and forever as one of my favorite animated characters of all time.

Now that I've talked far more than needed, I'd like to hear from all of you. What do you think about Sokka? Have anything to add to my list, or something that you don't agree with? Feel free to add any comment, question or criticism in the comments below; all I ask is that you remain civil and on-topic.

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