"The Last Airbender" premiered on Nickelodeon in 2005 and was hailed by critics all around for its complex narratives usually not seen in kids' TV shows. It touches upon topics such as war and genocide, colonization, and totalitarianism all while being explained in an easy way to grasp. "The Last Airbender" brings up questions regarding life, fate, freedom of choice, class and gender equality.
At the beginning of the first season, the main protagonist Aang sees his home of the Air Nomads being destroyed under the hand of the tyrannical Fire Nation and himself being the sole survivor of his people and last bearer of their culture.
As the TV Series progresses we learn about the Fire Nations atrocities by often seeing their immediate effect on the victims, and undirect damage of brainwashing their children in school. The creators manage to portray such harsh depictions of genocide and violence without seemingly frightening their young viewers.
"Avatar: The Last Airbender" is created by Michael Dante DiMartino and Bryan Konietzko who met each other in college and would go on and work together for years. With ‘The Last Airbender’, they combined the artistic style of western animation with heavy anime influence, with Asiatic imagery and style. They have said to love Japanese anime, Hong Kong action movies in the style of John Woo, kung-fu movies, Eastern philosophy, and Buddhism which is all prominent in the show, though most of the background imagery and concepts are borrowed from East Asian art and mythology.
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In the middle of the 2000s, "Avatar: The Last Airbender" took the Western animation fans by storm, with a combination of Japanese anime-influenced art style and bringing philosophically relevant questions of modern society and life to a younger audience through a sophisticated but easy-to-understand narrative. It has also received a ton of praise for its beautiful animation, immersiveness, touching storylines, fantastic writing, music, and voice acting. Many critics have called it the greatest animated series of all time.
During its three-season run on TV, it received all of 12 awards, among them a Primetime Emmy Award and numerous other nominations.
Between 2012 and 2014, "Avatar: The Last Airbender" fans finally got a new award-winning TV series, "Avatar: The Legend of Korra". Set 70 years after the events of the 'The Last Airbender', it was a very much looked-forward-to sequel of the original series.
The writing and themes in the sequel series are similar to the previous one, with many deep topics and issues being brought forward which are not common for a TV series aimed at children, like fascism, PTSD, and the problematic questions regarding weapons of mass destruction.
We recommend saving both of these TV series so you can get notified when they are available for instant streaming on any of the reliable platforms we support. Remember to use the Share function to easily recommend your friends and family to watch 'The Last Airbender' and leave a review to let us know what you think!