Date: 2011-10-17 03:13 am (UTC)
nam_jai: (AtLA dancing dragons)
From: [personal profile] nam_jai
This is one of my favorite episodes of the 3rd season (until I think of the competition -- I may have a lot of favorite episodes). First of all, I loved the music. Watching this was what made me decide I had to get the soundtrack. "Surely there is a soundtrack!" I blithely assumed. Alas, no, crushing disappointment on that front.

But back to the episode, it makes me laugh often, it's fun to see Aang try out being an ordinary schoolkid, and we also get a great look into the lives of ordinary Fire Nation people, likable as well as unlikable, and seeing the omnipresent propaganda and learning about prejudice against their own ("colony trash"). Random thoughts:

-Aang's so cutely enthusiastic about his repertoire of Fire Nation slang. But given the reactions Aang gets to "hotman" -- from the utterly perplexed guy here to Zuko's irritation -- I can't help wonder if it's not archaic, but was never used at all, by anyone ever.

-Noodle Lord!

-Hide's bullying behavior is mostly treated as Aang's problem, but my concern is more for On Ji. Whether he is her boyfriend or not, he seems really determined to control her life and it's creepy.

-Mai's little side-eye in that picture above nicely lays the ground for her eventually turning on Azula.

-"Go to your room!" Everything Wang Fire does and says makes me giggle.

-Again, ah, the music is fantastic, and I'm captivated by the choreography and whole spectacle of the cave party.

-And then the very last scene: first time I saw it, I believe I literally facepalmed. Oh, Zuko. You are a master of bad decisions.

Date: 2011-10-18 02:51 am (UTC)
nam_jai: (AtLA dancing dragons)
From: [personal profile] nam_jai
The arranged betrothal theory is interesting. It fits with the way she both acquiesces to his claims on her without a peep, yet seems to show no interest in socializing with him.

Date: 2011-10-17 06:42 pm (UTC)
yukinoomoni: (Mai)
From: [personal profile] yukinoomoni
I agree: Amazing music, wonderful animation, and amazing plot. It's both intense and hilarious, and rich with often-repeated and fantastic one-liners. I love the glimpse of Fire Nation life, especially that of children, and we finally get to see how the soldiers turn into the soldiers that they are.

Zuko's internal struggle with good and evil are extremely painful to watch. Despite the fact that Mai is obviously the one thing that makes him happy, it's clear that his decision-making is suffering as a result. I love how Mai's subtle look is a decent foreshadowing of what is to come.

Date: 2011-10-17 07:11 pm (UTC)
nam_jai: (AtLA dancing dragons)
From: [personal profile] nam_jai
One of the reasons I'm kind of glad I came to this show just this year, and missed out on fandom as it aired, is that I hear tell there was a lot of whining at the time about these so-called "filler" episodes, especially in the first half of S3. But I see these episodes as absolutely necessary to the story. We have to get to know the Fire Nation citizens as people, just as much as we did with the Water Tribe and the Earth Kingdom. It's so important to the themes of the series, and it makes for a richer, more fully realized world.

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The 2011 Avatar re-watch

January 2012

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