Community Opinion: Which Book Is Best ? Water, Earth or Fire

Book 1

Hello Avatar Fans Airspeed Prime here again with the Second Community Opinion, the first one was very successful so it will definitely continue.

So lets get right this months Topic.

Avatar The Last Airbender- Which Book Is Best ? Water, Earth or Fire.

Avatar The Last Airbender Book 1

Avatar the Last Airbender Book 2

Avatar The Last Airbender Book 3

This Topic is a very interesting one as many people have different things they like about Avatar, this combined with some of the amazing discussion that this topic brings up should lead to a brilliant post.

Here are the opinions of our Community.

Airspeed Prime(Moderator/Popular Post Writer/Facebook Administrator)

This is a topic I always love to discuss, that said it is very difficult to condense all my thoughts into a few paragraphs. So I will get straight into it, Book 3 Fire is my favorite followed extremely closely by Book 2 Earth and Book 1 is a clear third Place.I will now do a paragraph to discuss why each is placed like this.

Book 1 Water is a clear third place, but not because I don’t like it, I Love it the reason it is third is because I like Book 2 and 3 much more. The Things I like about Book 1 are that is is a great introduction to the show, it does a near perfect job of introducing all our favorite Characters and bringing in the overarching story to the series. The problems (Minor because Avatar is such a great show) are caused in a way by it being an introduction, Book 1 seems a bit slow and too disjointed compared to the other 2 Books, this may be due to the whole plot of this book, simply put what happens is Team Avatar must travel to the Northern Water Tribe so Aang and Katara can Learn Waterbending and Zuko and Zhao compete to out do each other and capture the Avatar, the problem is that it takes a whole season to get there and much of the season is “Here is a new place, what must we do here” , and while these episodes are brilliant character development many don’t advance the story at all. In terms of episodes, Book 1 has most of the bottom of my top 61 List. Jet, The Deserter, The Great Divide and the Spirit World part 1 are 4 of the Lowest on my list, many of the other episodes are mid to low on the List, On the other hand it does have some brilliant episodes: The King Of Omashu, The Storm, The Blue Spirit and the Two part finale are some of my favorites. To sum up Book 1 is a great introduction that is brought down (still amazing, Zuko and Zhao relationship is great, but compared to the other books) by many episodes that don’t advance the plot and seem random. It lacks the “Epicness” for the most part of the other 2 books.

Book 2 Earth is a very close second for me, the only thing stopping it from being number 1 is again “Epicness”, while in my Opinion it is the most consistent in terms of number of good episodes per Book, Book 3 has more superb episodes. Plus points for Book 2 are: The Introduction of Toph, bringing in more deep/meaningful themes, some great minor characters, Azula and most of all The Story of Zuko. We saw signs of Zuko becoming disheartened with the Fire Nation and doubting things in book 1, but in Book 2 he actually pretty gives up on capturing Aang and is set to settle down in Ba Sing Se with the help of his Uncle, Azula another great introduction changes that and you really feel for Zuko when he is so confused and has to make such an important decision: Good or Bad. In terms of episodes, Book 2 has no bad episodes with only Appa’s lost days slightly below par, It has many great episodes including: The Blind Bandit, The Drill, City Of Walls and Secrets, Lake Laogai, The Guru and the finale. The Ba Sing Se conspiracy plot is an excellent storyline that is creepy and intriguing and then The depth that The Guru goes into Aang’s Character is one of the standout moments of the series. Aang’s death and revival in the finale and the impact that the fall of Ba Sing Se has on the world is A truly shocking moment and it floored me. Book 2 has a disadvantage in that it is the middle of a story while Book 3 is the end and this in a way is the only reason Book 2 is second to Book 3.

And finally we come to my Number 1, Book 3 Fire. Book 3 Fire wins by a tiny amount over Book 2 simply because it is More Epic than Book 2.It is more mature that the other 2 Books and deals with deeper themes, Katara is The Southern Raiders is a brilliant spotlight on Katara’s issue, The death of her mother. We have our characters nearly fully developed and to me anyway they are much all much more interesting characters in Book 3. We get the payoff to many plot threads, KATAANG happened and it was Beautiful, Aang finally became the Avatar everyone wanted him to be and it was “again” Epic, Zuko at last found his own destiny became Fire Lord and is in a good relationship with Mai. The only bad things IMHO about Book 3 are that Team Avatar spent a bit too much time going through the Fire Nation and Toph got almost Zero development. In terms of Episodes, Book 3 has alot of the top episodes on my top 61 list With nearly all of the Book within the top of the list, The Four Part Finale, The Ember Island Players, The Headband and The Boiling Rock 1 and 2 some of My favorites. The only “bad” episode being The Painted Lady. The Finale is just One of the Best if Not the Best Pieces of Television ever, it is just brilliant in every way and a perfect way to end such a sensational series, The different characters relationships have developed so much up to this Book that they are so great in this Book, Sokka and Aang seem so much like brothers every scene they have. Book 3 is the most exciting Book and has such brilliant action, which is aided by the development of the Animation from Book 1. You could say that Book 3 takes everything developed in Book 1 and 2 and uses is to make itself The best Avatar ever, If Korra can live up in any way to this it will be amazing.

Coyote01’s always hard to decide which book is the best loleach one has a central pivotal moment that is awesome and changes the dynamic of things. Ok so..if I HAD to sayto me..Book 3 is the best. In my opinion, what Book 3 has that the other books don’t 1.) A theme that connects all the characters beyond what is shown in the previous 2 books; and 2.) a truly EPIC series of events that changed each character forever.

Book 2 is the 2nd best to introduced new elements of philosophy that really made u think..and I love moments like those. Book 2 also introduced the only metal-bender and all so awesome Toph lol”Β :)

Book 1 is the least best to me..because it was the introduction and it dealt with just the simple, black & white aspects of good guys vs bad guys..which is fine..but to me that has become a bit overly cliche and dull..but there were parts that were good about Book 1, no doubt..just the least appealing to me.

So to recap, Book 3 is the best, Book 2 is#2 loland Book 1 is last.


Of all the seasons of Avatar The Last Airbender, Book 3 is the best.It introduces many new and unique charecters as well as bringing back some old ones.The story of book 3 is very unique with many plot twists and it lets us see more about the Katara and Sokka’s story, and a few things we never knew(like Roku’s and Sozin’s friendship). But before you say that book 3 is superior to the other books in every way let me tell you this – book 1 was the intro to the Avatar world. It showed us some very importent things (like the main charecters and bending) and book 2 gave us a big plot twist (Aang getting killed) and introduces Toph, Azula and metalbending.
However, book 1 was a bit predictable (hero wins all the time) and book 2 didnt have the happy ending of book 3 (in book 2 Aang dies, how is that happy? but in book 3 it ended with Aang and Katara kissing)
All 3 books may have been good, but book 3 was the best of the 3 books.


Which Book of Avatar The Last Airbender is Best hmmmm a huge question, I’m avid fan of all the books, – Book one the building of our story and journey with our hero’s and villains, showing us a little of the backgrounds of the main characters but getting us onto the journey with the humor and also glimpses of the enormous scale of work the Gaang have set out for them. The devisation that Aang discovers that he truly is the Last Airbender alive what lead him to run away, meeting Zuko’s alto ego and being sooo close to catching Aang. Leading into the epic battle for the North, exposing the Avatar’s raw power as bridge between the worlds and become the Spirit of the Ocean to save the Northern Water Tribe from the Firenationjust some of the highlights that I love about Book 1.

In Book 2, getting to see the Gaang grow deeper into their roles and finally meet Toph, who brings a completely new and vibrant energy to the group showing how nothing comes easy and that by facing the challenges head on, you can do anything With wonderful splatterings of Uncle Iroh’s gentle wisdom along the way Again the writers did an amazing job on the Desert episode mixing humor with the overweighting seriousness of being lost in the desert and possibly will end up dying if they don’t get out of there, with Sokka and Momo’s drinking of the catcus juice and the repercussions of this happening made great laughing fits underpinning this all with the trauma and grief that Aang has lost Appa and not knowing if we would ever see Appa again Seeing the team slowly fall apart and coming back together in the Drill episode, finally getting to see the legendary Ba Sing Sae and all the hidden agendas that run the city and it’s illusions I loved the Guru episode as it delves deeper into the spiritual aspect of ATLA and prepares Aang, well, not quiet to the epic bending battle in Crossroads of Destiny I was gobsmocked when Azula shot Aang filled with Lightening! Didn’t see that coming for sure!

However for me as an older “aged” fan of ATLA I’d have to choose book 3 as the best book for me – it dealt with the more gritty issues and the coming of age to adult type themes, mixed perfectly with enough humor/comical moments to keep the story moving forward. It also dealt with the pressing need and the magnitude of the challenge that faced Aang but the whole the Gaang – to bring and end to the war and restore balance to the world. It offered me as an Adult who loves this show the opportunity to see just how human these characters are and that we all face or deal with similar emotions/shadows. Ok, so we don’t get to bend with the elements or facing total annihilation via a Evil (well surely misguided or totally deranged or all the above, LOL) Firelord, however we all have shadows or experiences where we can related to each of these characters at some point within book 3.

I appreciated that the ATLA writers brought more depth to the characters and we got to see more background of the main characters’ journey and having to deal with their own weaknesses, flaws, anxieties and negativities to move into being a stronger characters. Dealing with their shadows and their openness to have them exposed and move forward with this We got to see the characters not only as villains or hero’s but as human beings, struggling with their emotions, desires and needs.

From the moment Aang regains consciousness and discovers that all is not what it seems, and acknowledges he failed, that he feels he need to redeem himself and regain his honor, seeing the flip side of Aang becoming Zuko on a level and Zuko finally having his father’s approval welcoming him home

I loved the epic fight scenes both in Day of Black Sun and of course the final 2 chapters of the book and series. In Day of Black Sun we got to see the fire Nation finally vulnerable, yet due to Azula discovering the invasion plan remain still resilient enough to reply to the attack The moment Zuko faced his dad and finally stood his ground and redirected Ozai’s lightning, long enough to vanish and escape and fulfill his own destiny

I also loved the bending battle between Katara and Hama in The Puppetmaster. The moment when Katara discovered that she was just as strong if not a stronger bender than Hama and broke free of Hama’s bloodbending control over her, and show her awesome waterbending skills, only to have to finally resort to Bloodbending to save Aang and Sokka from hurting each other under Hama’s control showed for me that sometimes there just isn’t a choice I wept with Katara when Hama congratulated her in becoming a bloodbender then seeing how anger and hatred fueled Katara to seek revenge and use bloodbending in the Southern Raiders episode to subdue the Southern Raider Captain only to discover he was not Yon Rha – That when she finally got to face her target, she used waterbending to show her ability and had enough control to not extract revenge in the end

Seeing the huge struggle Zuko has to convince the Gang that he isn’t the person he use to be and that he really understands that as a firebender he needs to be more careful and control his bending so he doesn’t hurt people unintentionally. and finding a deeper level of appreciation of fire bending with the Firebending masters Ran and Shao who show him the true meaning of firebending, and getting to see him be able to fight Azula in both The Southern Raiders and the Into the Inferno and Avatar Aang episodes on her level rather than being the weaker opponent was another epic moment for me.

I loved the comedy in The Beach, The Runaway, Nightmares and Daydreams and of course who will ever forget the Ember Island Players! Throughout the whole book the writers did a great job to bring balance to the storylines with enough seriousness, but not over the top by breaking it with comic relief

I can go on for ever about book 3 and all the highlights, but over them all – for me, the ultimate moment in Book 3 is Avatar Aang’s return as the Avatar, and the epic bending battle with Ozai before Avatar Aang Energy Bends and takes away Ozai’s ability to firebend ever again. The coronation of FireLord Zuko and seeing the four nations celebrate the war is finally over. Acknowledging that it isn’t going to be easy, but working together and with the Avatars help Peace, Love and prosperity will be with them all

So now, I look forward to reading others thoughts on this Blessings! Donna

Indigo/Lola/Zoeeeee/Ana-Banana/Anastasia/Who knows how many more ?

Which ATLA Book is THE best???!!! Good question! The best Book is Book 1: Water!


Book 1: Water is the best cuz it states the whole story and plot-line of ATLA! It introduces everyone, explains what the whole series is about and it begins the showdown between the Fire Nation, the Earth Kingdom and the Water Tribe.
Bonus: Favorite episode: the very first one.
Favorite quote: Sokka: Great! So Aang can just do his Avatar Spirit state thing and we can take Ozai down and BOOM! We win and all live happily ever after!

Book 3: Fire is almost a tie to Book 1 cuz it shows Aang and the final showdown between him and Ozai but I don’t like how it mainly focuses on Zuko and Aang instead of the whole gAang.
Bonus: Favorite episode: Ember Island
Favorite quote: Azula: Yes! We can be the greatest couple there ever was and take over the world! Mwahahahaha!

Book 2: Earth is not as good cuz as the other 2 almost half of the Book just shows Sokka, Katara and Aang goofing around or trying to find an earthbending teacher. Less action. Although they do find Toph { }, it’s still a ‘lil boring.
Bonus: Favorite Episode: Avatar Day and The Blind Bandit.
Favorite quote: Toph: What do they call ya? Fancy Dancer?!


This was a hard topic to write about because all of the books were incredible, but if I had to choose the best book, it would have to be book three. Book three was the conclusion to the series, you finally got to see the epic battle between Firelord Ozai (Phoenix King) and Aang which in the end Aang becomes a fully realized avatar after defeating him. Aang defeats the firelord by taking his ability to bend away by using energybending which was taught to him by a lion-turtle. During the battle you get to some bending moves that were never seen before throughout the series. There was the awesome Agni Kai between Zuko and Azula to decide who would become the new firelord. Zuko finally sees the light and realizes his destiny to restore balance to the world so he finally decides to joins team avatar to help them defeat his father by teaching Aang firebending as well as how to redirect lightning which Aang uses in his battle with Firelord Ozai. Azula finally loses her cool and control after her so thought friends went against her when Mai helped Zuko escape from the boiling rock and when Ty Lee blocked her chi path before she attacked Mai. We were able to see a unique form of waterbending called blood-bending for the first time. Katara confronts the man who killed her mother, Yon Rha. We learned more about The Order of the White Lotus and what they stood for. We saw a beefed up Iroh as he worked out while in prison during the first half of the season. Sokka trains under Piando the way of the sword and Piando helps make a sword made out of a meteorite. Katara and Sokka are finally reunited with their father. Sokka and Suki meet again when Sokka rescues her from the boiling rock. Aang finally confesses his feelings for Katara to her to which later leads to a very passionate kiss as the closing moments of the series.

Coming in at a very close second is Book 1. Book 1 was important because it introduced us to the avatar world and most of the main characters. We learned about the bending of the four elements and about the great war that has risen between the fire nation and the other nations soon after Aang disappeared. Avatar Roku reveals himself to Aang to help him along his journey. We meet Suki and the other Kyoshi Warriors. We realize that Aang is in love with Katara. Avatar Roku tells Aang about the firelord’s plan to use Sozin’s Comet to end the war once and for all which would come by summer’s end meaning Aang would have to master the four elements by then which normally takes years to master a single element, but Avatar Roku tells him that if he doesn’t defeat the firelord before the comet arrives then even the Avatar won’t be able to restore balance to the world. We learn that Aang ran away from home and why Zuko is obsessed over capturing the Avatar so he can regain his honor and throne back to the Fire Nation. We meet Princess Yue, Sokka’s first love interest, and later she becomes the moon spirit. Aang enters the spirit world for the first time and we learn that the Avatar is the great bridge between the spirit world and the Avatar world. We meet Commander Zhao who later on became Admiral Zhao and tried to conquer the Northern Water Tribe where he planned on eliminating the moon spirit and succeeded at first until Princess Yue gave back her life to the moon spirit. We saw Aang merge with the ocean spirit to beat the Fire Nation siege.

Last but not least is Book 2. Book 2 showed us what the avatar state was. We got to meet Toph a.k.a. the blind bandit who taught Aang how to earth bend who taught him to use earth as an extension of his senses. We saw Azula for the first time. We learned that she controls people by making them fear her. We watched Iroh teach Zuko how to redirect lightning. The gang takes a trip to the library and meets the knowledge spirit and finds out about a solar eclipse that would block all firebenders from being able to firebend. We sadly watched Appa get dragged away by some sandbenders while Toph was keeping the library from sinking. Sokka and Suki begin to fall in love. We meet the swamp guys. The gang stops a fire nation drill from breaking into the great wall of Ba Sing Se. We watch Toph and Katara go to a spa, Iroh celebrates his son’s birthday, Sokka gets into a poetry-off with a teacher, Aang goes to the zoo, Zuko goes on a date, and Momo finds an imprint of Appa’s foot in Ba Sing Se. We meet the corrupt Dai Li lead by Long Fang. Azula takes over Ba Sing Se while dressed as Kyoshi Warriors. Jet died trying to help Aang find Appa. Aang almost masters the avatar state but couldn’t because he couldn’t let go of his feelings for Katara. Azula almost killed the avatar by hitting Aang with lightning while he was entering the avatar state but Katara saved him with the water from the spirit oasis in the Northern Water Tribe.


Of the three books, hands down, I’d have to say Fire is the absolute best. It’s not to say that Water and Earth aren’t as good, because both are excellent, it’s a difficult choice.

Water sets down the foundation of the characters.
Aang, a 112 year old, fun loving kid burdened with the responsibility of saving the world.

Katara, the spunky but loving Waterbender whom Aang falls in love with the minute he sees those hair loopies float in the breeze.

Sokka, the sarcastic warrior who fights to keep his promise to his father by protecting his sister. He’s smart, a great planner, he has a wicked sense of humor, but he can also be very caring.

Then there’s Iroh, who seems to be lazy and a bit of a pacifist. But you get glimpses that there is more to him than meets the eye. Especially when he gets captured in -Winter Solstice Part 1″.

Finally, there is the most complicated character of all. Prince Zuko. At first glance, you see an angry hotheaded young man heck bent for election on finding the Avatar. You see he’s scarred, but you don’t find out why until -The Storm”.

He’s so concerned about his honor, yet, doesn’t realize that he has more honor than he thinks he does. When Iroh was kidnapped by the Earthbender soldiers and he saw Appa, there was that split decision of go after the Avatar or go after his uncle. He chooses Iroh.

There was also the Agni Kai with Zhao. Zuko could have killed him, instead he showed mercy, which only kindled Zhao’s hatred for him.

You could see that under the surface, Zuko wasn’t a typical bad guy. He was just a young man desperate to gain his father’s love and respect as well as loving his country, which he did. He proved that when he stood up to the men at the war meeting, that led to his banishment.

Earth had some very fine points, too.

We were introduced to some very eccentric characters in the -The Cave of The Two Lovers”. The Singing Nomads were hilarious. Sokka’s frustration with Chong was understandable, but comical. But, Aang botches his chances at getting a kiss from Katara because when that moment came, he clutched.

The fact that Omashu was taken over by the Fire Nation was tragic, that King Bumi was trapped in a metal cage was heartbreaking.

And we were introduced to some new characters and bending.

We meet the mistress of manipulation, Zuko’s little sister Azula, who is not only a Firebender, but she can also create lightning. Along with Azula, we meet Ty Lee, and Mai. Neither are Firebenders, but both are skilled in fighting. Ty Lee has the ability to block a person’s Chi, except when it comes to Sokka’s thick head. Mai is lethal with her blades.

Best of all, we get to meet Toph. She looks delicate, fragile, and happens to be blind, but truly proves to be the best Earthbender in the world when she is able to bend metal. She’s sweet, but she also is very much like Sokka, whom she appeared to have a slight crush on, she had a sense of humor. But she was also very blunt and called it as she saw it. She was a very strong, endearing character that got on Katara’s nerves, but of course, Katara being Katara, she treated Toph like a younger sister. They argued, but they made up.

In -Crossroads of Destiny”, Zuko is actually happy he and Iroh are getting along, and then Azula and the Dai Li toss him in jail with Katara who hates him. But then, he grew gentle with her when she was so willing to heal him. She was the only person who touched his scar, and he let her.

Aang and Iroh came to their rescue, and then came -The Crossroads of Destiny”. The true meaning of the episode.


Had Azula not manipulated Zuko, said the things she did, bringing up his need to please his father, etc., I don’t think he would have sided with her, but she knew what buttons to push, and he made the decision to fight with her.

It’s a pivotal episode because it brings us to Fire.

Now, why is Fire best?

Every single episode is filled with action. There are no mediocre episodes.

You find out Azula is vulnerable and actually akward when it comes to being a regular teenager. She gets all crazy and power hungry when they play what should have been a friendly game. She gets a kiss from a handsome guy and gets all crazy again. You can’t help but feel a little sorry for her. To me, she was the perfect character to love to hate.

Zuko’s struggle is quite intense. He knew he betrayed his uncle. He was struggling with the right and wrong of things. His turmoil was apparent at -The Beach”. But that inner turmoil is explained in -The Avatar and the Firelord” He’s got the good and evil working in him. After that, when it comes to the war meeting, you can see there is a definite change in him.

You also get the sense even in -The Avatar and The Firelord” the parallels between Zuko and Aang. Zuko is a part of Roku, as is Aang. The groundwork is laid that they are destined to work together, of course that doesn’t happen until later.

Sokka’s growth comes as well. When he learns the way of the sword from Master Piandao. Through the whole series, you see he’s learning to be a better fighter, but this was a pivotal point for Sokka because he isn’t a bender like the rest of the gaang. He’s the -Normal” one of the group. He’s even told that he may end up a better master than Piandao, and I believe that he will be because Sokka, even with his goofball ways, gives 100% in anything he does. He strives to be like his father, who is a fine example of a man.

Aang has to face the fact that he’ll have to kill the Fire Lord, something I don’t think he ever thought about before. I don’t think he was sure as to what he was going to do when he was going to face him during the eclipse.

The battle with the warriors and the benders was amazing. It was also the very first episode I’d ever seen, so I hold -The Day of Black Sun” as something special.

We also learn that Uncle Iroh isn’t just a tea loving kook. The way he buffs up in prison and tricks the guard into thinking he’s gone crazy is genius.

To me, it really started to get good when Zuko joined the gaang and wanted to teach Aang Firebending. It played out really well, it wasn’t all hugs and kisses at first, he had to prove himself, which he did beautifully.

Katara who is usually the compassionate motherly type learns to -blood bend”. And though she was horrified by it, she ended up using it when she was on her -Field Trip” with Zuko. But when she came to face the man who murdered her mother, she showed a great deal of mercy and walked away from him. Because of this, she was able to forgive Zuko.

We were also able to get a laugh with -The Ember Island Players”. It was the calm before the storm of the final four episodes. I loved Aang’s reaction when he was played by a bald lady. And Toph releasing that sonic wave (aside from the fact that he was a big buff dude) to see was a riot. Of course Toph was able to take it all with a grain of salt because she has a good sense of humor.

I did love how she told Zuko he had redeemed himself to Iroh, and then did her usual tough affectionate punch.

The fight scenes are amazing, especially in Sozin’s Comet 3 & 4. The artwork is dazzling, especially with all the different Firebending, the artists outdid themselves, and the CGI was pretty fantastic, too. The music was astounding, it fit each scene pefectly, it made you feel like you were a part of the show.

The final battles were brilliant. Zuko’s Firebending was equally as good as Azula’s, the battle between the two, coupled with the music was perfect. Then, when he takes the lightning meant for Katara, it’s very gripping. And Katara was the one who took Azula down, and she didn’t use violence to do it. She could have hurt Azula with ice darts, but all she did was chain her up and rush to Zuko’s aid. And then the two thanking each other gave a special kind of closure.

It was especially moving when Sokka loses his sword and boomerang and is holding onto Toph. I admit, I was going to lose it until Suki showed up, especially after Toph’s, -Aye, aye, Captain.” And then you see her cry.

Watching the Order of The White Lotus kick butt was really cool, too. I mean, those men weren’t young, but they really put on a good show.

Of course there was the battle between Ozai and Aang. The first time you watch, you wonder, -Is Aang going to kill the bugger?” It’s edge of the seat when Aang is covered with rock and Ozai is shooting fire at him, but then BAM his back strikes a sharp rock, and he is no longer cut off from his cosmic energy. He’s downright fierce when he goes into the Avatar State and takes after The Fire Lord.

Aang gains control of himself before he strikes Ozai down, and even though he was shown mercy The Loser Lord tries to strike at him again. Then we get to see a whole new kind of bending. The way they showed the good energy vs. evil was amazing! Rather than take a life, The Avatar took away Ozai’s bending. And who taught him? A giant Lion Turtle.

Seeing Zuko and Aang right before Zuko becomes Fire Lord is very touching. They came full circle, they were enemies, but now they became friends. It wasn’t a huge surprise in one way, because they worked really well together in -The Blue Spirit.”

Zuko gets crowned Fire Lord, but even still, he serves tea at the Jasmine Dragon to his friends while Sokka works on his painting.

Finally, much to the dismay to the Zutara fans out there, Aang finally gets what he’s wanted from the time he saw Katara’s hair loopies float in the breeze. A REAL kiss.


It is very hard to choose which book is the “best” of ATLA. Each one of the books has some great values and purpose. Let’s take a look at all three of them in order, then I’ll try and pick out which one I think is the “best”.

Book 1: Water

This is the introductory book. I notice that the animation and stories in the first few espisodes are much more simple than the subsequent episodes and books. Once the book gets going though, it turns into the wonderfully complex and awsome series we all came to love.

The whole first season is about introductions and goes in depth to set up the other two books. We meet some awsome characters and learn about the struggles of the main characters. Aang has to come to terms with his 100 year absence. Zuko is relentless in his quest of regaining his honor. We learn just how powerful the Fire Nation military is and what the rest of the world has been doing to survive the war. Season one is an awsome set up. My favorite episodes are “The King of Omashu” and ” The seige of the North 1 and 2″. It ends on a good note and we were all left HOPING for more.

Book 2:Earth

I loved season two. I think it had awsome substance and character developement. We met most of our characters in season one, but we get to know and fall in love with them in season 2. The episodes I love the most are the ones that delve into Avatar history. I like it that the writers took the time to explain why things are the way they are and in an interesting way. We learn about the Avatar State,meet Toph,go to a spirit library,loose Appa, travel to Ba Sing Se, learn it’s secrets,find Appa,plan an invasion, unlock some chakkras, get betrayed, shot by lightning, and barely escape. Wheeew what a season! You can say what you want, but season two is probably what I would recommend to newcomers who want to get hooked on ATLA.My favorite episodes are Zuko Alone, The Blind Bandit,The Spirit Library, Appas Lost Days, Tales of Ba Sing Se, and The Guru. Book 2 ends on a bad note and leaves us BEGGING for more. I remember waiting through what I thought was torture for Book 3 to debut.

Book 3: Fire

Ahh season three, you are the freshest in our minds. So many great things happen in season three. I liked pretty much every episode. This season really got into the history of the world and rounded out our characters on the final leg of the journey. Aang wakes up and then dances with a headband, Katarra becomes a painted lady, Sokka gets a master and a space sword, Aang has some freaky and funny nightmares and daydreams, the much anticipated invasion happens and then fails. Zuko finally switches sides and teaches Aang firebending, with the help of the last two dragons. Sokka and Zuko break outta prison, with a little help. Katarra and Zuko go ninja on the Southern Raiders. The gaang hides out on Ember Island and enjoy a play there. Then a giant lion turtle picks up Aang to go kick the Firelord’s butt in the ultimate final showdown. Azula finally loses it in the best bending battle of the series with Zuko, Iroh and the OWL take back Ba Sing Se,and Aang becomes a fully realized Avatar complete with energy bending capabilites. Then to top it off a Zuko’s mom cliffhanger and Kataang.

If season two got you hooked then season three got you obsessed. I get excited just thinking about all the fun I have watching it. Every time it is freakin’ awsomeevery time. My favorite episodes are The Avatar and the Firelord, Sokkas Master, Day of Black Sun pt. 2, The Firebending Masters, The Ember Island Players, The Old Masters, Into the Inferno, and Avatar Aang. Don’t get me wrong, I like all the episodes. These are just my all time favs.

So if I were to pick out a “favorite” I would have to say season three is probably the winner, with season two coming in a close second. However, I only say that because I’ve watched every episode of the series at least five times. I don’t know if season three would be my favorite if I didn’t have the other seasons to set it up and understand it. I don’t think you can fully appreciate what happens with some of the characters in season three unless you watch seasons one and two. For exampleCan one really know how huge Zuko’s switch to the good side is unless you’ve watched his “evil” self in season one and his struggle in season two? I dont think so. I’m a guy who enjoys the end of a journey, so for me season three is my favorite.

It ends on a good note and I’m definately craving more. Come on Korra hurry up!

Admin / Jordash (Site Administrator)

If I were forced to choose I would have to go with Book 2 Earth although like many others mentioned I love them all.”Β  The reason I chose Book 2 is because this is where most of everyone’s favorite characters were introduced.”Β  Toph, Azula and crew, etc.. Zuko goes out on his own and starts his transformation.”Β  The other big thing about Book 2 is that it seems like the series hit it’s stride and took on a bit of a more serious and freaking cool tone while still being hilarious in a way that wasn’t cheesy or childish.”Β  Avatar The Last Airbender Season 2 also stayed on track with the storyline a lot better and really nailed down some great story elements.

My second choice would be Book 3 Fire, primarily because of the action sequences and the Agni Kais, the Agni Kai between Zuko and Azula especially was amazing.”Β  The only bad part about Book 3 was that it was when the series ended haha.”Β  But it was a way good ending and I can’t wait for Korra!

Can’t add too much to whats already been said but the books that made up Avatar The Last Airbender are certainly something everyone should watch.

Our Communities Thoughts

This was a very difficult topic for everyone to write about, Since all three books of Avatar are so excellent so people choosing one over the other is not a slight on the others. Another problem was some people condensing their thoughts so they were not writing a Book.

The main general thoughts are that Book 3 Fire is the best followed Closely by Book 2 Earth with Book 1 Water lagging back a bit. The main thing to note here is that everyone loves each Season but overall people thought that Book 3 was the best Avatar, with all 3 Books up there with the best of any animation out there.

Book 3 was best because it had all the set up of Book 1 and 2 to work off to make some amazing Avatar, but it also had more Epic stuff happening compared to the other 2, with tonnes of extremely moving and emotional moments including Katara looking for revenge in “The Southern Raiders” and of course the Amazing Event that was THE FINALE with Aang finally becoming the fully realized Avatar we always wanted him to become, and of course KATAANG HAPPENED (take that zutarians !)

Look out next month for the next Community Opinion, to get your Opinion in the next post just be active on the forums and have some great discussions, Look at your Private Messages around the 13th of January as that is when I will be sending out requests for your opinion.

If you liked this post, check out these ones

See you next Month

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My name is Morgan Bannon, I am a 22 Year old Male from Ireland and I am the Site Super Moderator. I have watched and been a fan of Avatar since it premiered. I am also a news post writer for the site and host the site's podcast, The Avatar Online Podcast. My strength as an Avatar fan would be just a good knowledge of Avatar Canon and characters.

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Comments - 48 Posts

  1. Airspeed Prime Said: Comment by Airspeed Prime on January 4, 2011 at 12:42 pm | Permalink

    Thank you to everyone who accepted my offer to Write their Opinion, It literally would not have happened without you all.


    Tracy Reply:

    I really enjoyed doing it. I enjoyed reading everyone’s opinions. All the books were great, one couldn’t exist without the other… well they could, but it wouldn’t be as entertaining. πŸ™‚


    woodzanager Reply:

    I enjoyed writing my opinion down so thanks for asking me too. I think its funny that almost everyone picked book 3 as their favorite!


    Donna Reply:

    Thanks for asking Airspeed Prime πŸ™‚ Loved reading what others thought and was like, oh yeah, I liked that about that book too… πŸ˜€


  2. Shah Said: Comment by Shah on January 4, 2011 at 5:21 pm | Permalink

    Is it even legal in the avatar world to choose a superior amongst the books?!? 0.o!!


    Airspeed Prime Reply:

    I think pretty much everyone mentioned that all 3 books were amazing but I think what most people said proves that while all Avatar is much better than most other shows Book 2 and 3 are superior comparing avatar.


    Tracy Reply:

    It’s just like picking a favorite element, they are all amazing, but hey, we find some niftier than others.


    Donna Reply:

    lol…. probably not! lol! Though without each book there would be no Avatar world, they all add to the dynamic and epicness of the ATLA world and each have amazing and valuable qualities, though each of us is different and we all see or feel there are strengths and weakness that we each enjoyed & appreciated in each of books, and it’s great to be able to see what others are thinking or just reminded that hey I like that about that too… or yeah no, that doesn’t fit or work for me….

    I can’t help but wonder just how much fuller and intense world would the ATLA world be if they ever did a Book 4 Air – (Yes I know it’s never gonna happen, though dreams are always free and miracles do happen πŸ˜€ )

    It was a real tormenter for me to choose as I love them all, and having to finally choose the book that was most significant for me, doesn’t change my view or mind that they are all soooo amazing, wicked, full of wisdom and wit and still is the best TV series ever to be on the Telly for sure! YIP YIP! πŸ˜€


    Tracy Reply:

    Donna, I’d love if they did Air, too. We can hope, dream, write. What have you.

    I love all three. I have all three. I will watch all three, though, there are certain episodes I will skip. A few just don’t do it for me. LOL.


    rocky Reply:

    Yea it would be awesome if they made a book 4 but the creators said they always meant for it to be a trilogy, so I wish they would just give us some answers to the cliffhangers at the end of the series (mainly the one about the whereabouts of zuko’s mom).

    Hopefully they will be answered in korra!

    Inferno320 (formerly known as Avatar320) Reply:

    I keep thinking that Korra will be Book Four. I mean, she’s going to be learning Air, right? So why not call it Book Four: Air? Just a thought though.

    I really enjoyed reading this second thread too. I agree with most of the fans. Book One has too many filler episodes for me, and a lot of the episodes that aren’t fillers just feel like fillers until you watch episodes from later seasons and see characters return. So Book One: Water gets 3rd place for me.

    Book Two: Earth gets 2nd. It starts off with a couple of fillers that aren’t as entertaining once you get into the more serious episodes. Once they get to Ba Sing Se, the story quickly picks up with the political conspiracy theory plotline. But then it gets slowed down again with 215 and 216. Although Book Two has my favorite ending (not to sound terrible or anything, but I just really love when every now and then the villains win), there’s too much filler to make it my favorite of the three.

    As for Book Three: Fire, it’s a clear 1st place winner. The first episode really got to me when I saw it for the first time. Then you had two or three fillers after that, but they were more enjoyable than the previous ones. I’m a huge fan of the Bloodbending episodes, with the Day of Black Sun invasion of the Fire Nation, the Boiling Rock, and the four-part Sozin’s Comet finale to make the season even more epic. However, you have to admit that Book Three could not have been so amazing if it didn’t have all the story build-up and info from Books One and Two.


    Mako Reply:

    I have to agree with you there for the most part, except i thought that water was a tie with earth. It is actually surprisingly hard to pick and I have to agree with everyone here that fire was the best. I wish they would make a part four: Air but they won’t. Why don’t we form a protest to make them create book 4? LONG LIVE AVATAR!!!!

  3. KoO Said: Comment by KoO on January 5, 2011 at 10:06 pm | Permalink

    I read some of the opinions, but some of you wrote frikkin’ walls. Lol.

    For me, I probably liked Book 2 the most because, like Airspeed mentioned in his opinion, it was consistently good. Book 3 was good because it had the 4 part finale, The Boiling Rock 2-parter, The Southern Raiders, the episode with the Sun Warriors and all the other wrap-up stuff. Book 1 is by far my least favourite because, again like Airspeed mentioned, it had too many “filler” episodes (The Great Divide being an insult to the whole series IMO, although I do watch it every time I rewatch the show -.-).

    Good read, just like last time.


    Airspeed Prime Reply:

    Yeah, It was very difficult to get my opinion across without writing alot.


    Donna Reply:

    LOL… sorry KoO about writing a frikkin wall! For me, ATLA is such an epic series, I can’t just do a few lines! lol…. I’ve tried, but there is sooo much damn good stuff that one just wants to do it justice too! and the work that the Creators/Crew and Cast put into this series – 5+ years of their lives, for me, it feels like I want as a fan to give back too! It is overwhelming indeed at times reading what folk write, but I learn something new or get a fresh perspective or see something that needs more thought or just love seeing that folk think similar to me…. So look forward to the next community opinion…. πŸ™‚


    Steve Reply:

    me too


  4. John Said: Comment by John on January 9, 2011 at 7:16 pm | Permalink

    Earth is the best! Book Two!


  5. Nuriko Said: Comment by Nuriko on January 17, 2011 at 1:12 am | Permalink

    Bravo everyone! Bravah!

    Whoa-ho-ho-ho-ho! Ya got some really long paragraphs there, eh?

    LOL anyway great job everyone!


  6. LightningSpeed-Zuko Said: Comment by LightningSpeed-Zuko on January 21, 2011 at 4:49 am | Permalink

    Yea I treasure these opinion posts very much :-D…because they can get everyone involved and bring it to the forefront. Also recaps all of the books into one page..which is always a plus lol πŸ™‚ Anyways, keep up the good work people <3


  7. BraveSirRobin70 Said: Comment by BraveSirRobin70 on January 22, 2011 at 1:31 am | Permalink

    For me, book 2 is definitely the best. I only say that because in book 3, pretty much everything prior to the eclipse was totally pointless (except for Zuko visiting Iroh and learning about Roku’s life). The first few episodes of book 2 are also pretty pointless, but the real story kicks in much sooner than it did in book 3. Every book 2 episode starting with the Blind Bandit was important to the story.

    So, for book 2, the real story began about a third of the way through the season, while it took nearly half the season for book 3.

    As for book 1, it could have been condensed down to episode 1: “Hey, let’s go to the North Pole” episode 2: “Hey, we’re at the North Pole,” end of season.


  8. Kelsey Said: Comment by Kelsey on January 29, 2011 at 8:48 pm | Permalink

    i love all of the books, very hard to choose my favorite! but in my opinion, i think Book 3 is the best. i must admit, when i started to watch the series on netflix, i was most excited to see book 2. i was really excited to see Toph (remembering her from when the show was on tv.) book 2 is my second favorite. i just LOVE it when Zuko turns good and cuts his hair! it was dissapointing when he joined Azula, but he found his way back in Book 3; another reason why it is my favorite. All of the characters come together and, in a way, find themselves. Aang truly became the avatar, Katara met face to face with the guy who killed her mom and let him have it, Sokka got a master and learned the ways of the sword, and Zuko found his “honor” and learned that his mom was still alive. (i only wish i knew what happened with them!) as for Toph, she learned how to bend metal in Book 2, and became the greatest earth bender in the world.
    anyway, Book 3 also has very good episodes. my favorite is either Daydreams and Nightmares or The Play. it’s nice that the characters can relax for a little bit and go back to all the uselesss stuff they used to do. πŸ˜€ everything just worked out in the end. i love it when Zuko and Aang hug, it’s so cute! and when Sokka draws the picute of everyone! (he was never good at drawing)
    over all, this was an awesome series. i can’t wait for The Legend of Korra!


  9. avatar Said: Comment by avatar on February 7, 2011 at 5:48 pm | Permalink

    out of all the books i think it is a tie although book three is really god along with the other book i say it is a tie!


    avatar Reply:

    i think that avaatr the last airbender was one of the best tv shows ever but i do want to know if Zuko finds his mother.


    Admin / Jordash Reply:

    Yeah We do have some news on that front, a new Graphic Novel Series will be released that will probably answer the question of Zuko’s Mom, you can learn more about that here:


    Admin / Jordash Reply:

    Yeah they are all so amazing!


  10. a_girl Said: Comment by a_girl on February 13, 2011 at 5:38 pm | Permalink

    book 3 i absoutly loved the drama/tension they happened πŸ˜€


  11. Swamp bender Said: Comment by Swamp bender on February 17, 2011 at 6:11 pm | Permalink

    Book 2, cuz they introduce TOPH, and Azula is at her peak of awesome/ evilness. However, Book 3 is great– especially at the end when we finally get to see everyone’s final battles.
    One great mish mash of this on youtube is below:
    It’s honestly amazingly well done by animehodgepodge:

    Just copy paste the link, srry about that πŸ™‚


  12. bob Said: Comment by bob on March 7, 2011 at 3:16 pm | Permalink

    why is their not a air book


    Mako Reply:

    ‘Cos it was meant as a trilogy. Besides, Aang already mastered air (see his tattoos?) and unless he got amnesia he wouldn’t have to re-learn it (wait a minute, that’s not a bad idea!). I wish there was book 4 though. πŸ™


  13. avatar4ever Said: Comment by avatar4ever on March 29, 2011 at 3:50 pm | Permalink

    I loved all the opinions.
    It’s so hard for me to choose ONE book :/

    Probably I will choose the one that has the most fav moments.
    Not sure, but I think that Book 3 will win (especially because of all the KATAANG moments!!!!!!), but I also love a lot of episodes/moments on book 1 and 2….

    It’s a harad, hard choise….


    Admin / Jordash Reply:

    Yeah it’s certainly a major challenge to choose. That’s for sure.


  14. awesomo Said: Comment by awesomo on April 27, 2011 at 5:49 pm | Permalink

    BOOK 3 FTW


    Admin / Jordash Reply:

    Yeah Book 3 is certainly Awesome!


  15. book 2 hands down Said: Comment by book 2 hands down on August 9, 2011 at 10:05 pm | Permalink

    Book 2 was definitely my favorite book. All you have to do is simply look at the story line and how there were so many plot elements and twist; Book 2 was so intelligent. Book 2 like Book 1 started really strong. Think about it The avatar state, Return to Omashu, The Swamp, the Blind Bandit, Zuko Alone, The chase, Bitter work…(the rest of the episodes minus Tales of Ba Sing Se) can you say you can get rid of these episodes and that they’re not important? I mean I think book 2 is simply great. It had such a strong story, and many surprises.

    Book 1 I think is great too, and is second place for me. I mean I watched it from the beginning so maybe I’m biased but I just think it had so many classics. Boy in the Iceberg, The Avatar Returns, The southern airtemple (I really liked Zuko’s battle with Zhao)I loved Omashu, and I thought the winter solstice part 2 was epic(especially getting pass the fire nation blockade). You can’t deny The storm or Blue spirit,ect. Sorry for rambling on ha ha.

    I’m actually kind of surprised how many prefer book 3. I think people are letting a couple episodes of book 3 sway their entire opinion of the season. To be honest I enjoyed book 3 the least of the 3 and maybe that’s because of high expectations after book 2. After the book 3 season premier I was already disappointed; after that extremely long wait for it I expected more. Then there were way too many just plain silly episodes. I mean it was just lacking. I mean we barely even get to see Aang firebend. We barely even get to see Zuko bond with team avatar and the time he has with them is wasted on “Field trips”. They could of done so much more. But I admit I really loved the Finale even though the season didn’t support it at all. Actually the first episode of the season contradicts it with Aang attempting to find oazi and end it then. Though the finale was incredible, Overall I don’t think Book fire was up to par with Avatar. But I mean sure you can say that it might of had a LITTLE bit more action then book 2 but Story BEATS action. In my opinion.


    Airspeed Prime Reply:

    I see what your saying, but I explained in my opinion why I think Book 3 comes out on top.
    Epicness of the story and action, As said in relation to Book two that I think it is the most consistent in terms of good episodes.
    Book 3 has our characters at their most developed, so in that way Book 2 as a standalone is the best book but when you include the development from Book 1 and 2 as most of us in the post did, we have our characters at their best in Book 3.
    I also think a lot of liking Book 3 depends on what you can get from the episodes that are light on Plot, The Painted Lady to some may be one of the lesser episodes, but interms of showing us Katara’s character and what drives her it is brilliant. The Headband another that is not really a plot heavy episode is an awesome KATAANG episode, we see Aang’s influence on the Fire Nation children and how some fun can change everything, plus it is hilarious.

    “barely even get to see Zuko bond with team avatar and the time he has with them is wasted on ΓƒΒ’Γ’β€šΒ¬Γ…β€œField tripsΓƒΒ’Γ’β€šΒ¬Γ‚Β”
    I think this is a bit of a contradiction, the field trips served a great purpose in that each member of Team Avatar had a slightly different problem with Zuko, so having him bond with them one at a time was a great way to introduce the person who was a villain to them throughout. Zuko’s interaction with Team Avatar when all together was good too, Like at the start of The Southern Raiders, everyone but Katara is fine with him this scene is aided by Book 2’s ending as we all know why she is the last to trust him.
    Coming back to the Epicness, there are so many amazing moments from Book 3, the whole Finale, the Invasion, specifically Zuko redirecting Lightning at Ozai. Something we have waited a long time to see, Zuko confront the person who made him the villain in book 1. Book 2 had some scenes like this, but not as EPIC.
    I watched from the premiere too, but Book 1 you can see they were still learning how they were going to tell the story, for the reason you don’t like Book 3 as much is Book 1 not even more guilty of, a lack of Story.

    IMO, Book 3 beats out Book 2 by a tiny margin. And the way I worked it out was I did a rewatch where I rated every episode out of 100 and averaged up the scores for each book, I was being as critical as I could be, but the scores are pretty high.

    Book 1 83.35
    Book 2 87.35
    Book 3 90
    Book 3 won mainly because of the Finale and the lead up in to the finale getting very high scores for me, Book 2 was so consistent with very close scores for each episode.
    If Book 3 was standalone it wouldn’t come out on top, but because of the development and journeys from the previous 2 books it helps it to be so good.


    book 2 hands down Reply:

    haha Well I guess you can say that. I respect your opinion. And maybe I did just let my expectations ruin book 3 for me but still. But in my opinion I don’t think the lead up to the series finale was that strong. I mean I didn’t feel an urgency like I did upcoming to Siege of the North or Guru/Crossroads. I mean Ember island players? ha that was so silly, I mean I liked it but not as an episode right before the series finale. I mean the series finale was pretty much stand alone and barely anything in the season supported it. And again the first episode Aang is flying toward Ozai with intents to end it and fight him, it kind of contradicts the storyline of the finale.

    But about the Zuko field trips, my problem with the field trips is that it seems like it just felt like it was a rushed and forced way of bonding. I think it could of been more effective if it was Zuko bonding with Team avatar all at the same time in my opinion. I mean I expected to at least see Zuko teach Aang firebending through the season. Not just for 10 seconds in beginning of the finale. I just felt that book 3 had a potential to do so much more. But I guess of course people see things differently, but at least we can agree that we loved the show.


    Airspeed Prime Reply:

    Yeah there were definitely things like you say that were let downs, Zuko teaching Aang getting more screentime may have been seen as repetition given that we see Iroh teaching Zuko, and The Deserter.

    The one point I really don’t agree with would be that there is no urgency in the lead up to the finale, we learn in the finale that they were going to wait until after the comet to fight Ozai, so the urgency only came when they had to face him during it.

    The first episode with Aang wanting to fight Ozai then and there is just because he feels like he let the world down in the loss at Ba Sing Se and wants to make amends, he is not thinking clearly in 301 and as we see until Zuko mentioned killing Ozai in 316 it never had crossed Aang’s mind. It contradicts the finale yes, but there is a reason, Aang says it he wants to get his honour back and throughout Season 3 he realises that he tried his best and that they still have a chance if they wait.

    Ember Island Players is definitely a 50-50 one from what I have seen of peoples reactions, Myself I love the episode and think the timing is perfect, we see our main characters look on at a recap of their journeys, it is a recap episode without resorting to a clip show episode, we see them watch all their mistakes and bad moments. A light hearted time just before the drama of the finale. But I can definitely see it if some people think it was too much of a change of pace.

    The Zuko bonding thing, I struggle to see how they could have successfully done that including the whole group in each episode, because they were not going to change the plot points like Boiling Rock, Firebending masters, Katara’s mother’s killer.
    The whole team going undercover would have been a bit cheesy and unbelievable, there was no need for them in the Sun Warriors temple, and Zuko and Katara’s trip was a very personal one they of any 2 characters needed something like this to become friends.

    I definitely agree that high expectations especially given the huge wait for Season 3, could have led to a bit of a letdown. At first I was not a fan of the idea of them being undercover in the Fire Nation, I would have preferred them searching out and finding all their friends for the Invasion, but then I realised if they went that way while it would have been more story driven our main characters development may have gotten lost. The way it was we got to see Sokka realise that his friends don’t think of him as lesser because he can’t bend, Aang realising that he can accomplish the task Roku set him, Katara getting over (for the most part ) her anger and rage over the loss of her mother, Zuko finally finding his own destiny.

    You said it best in your first post, Story VS Action, but I would add and extra one in
    Story vs Action vs Character development
    It had the second two in spades, and IMO story and character development are linked.

    I don’t think there would be anything I would change about the show, Maybe adding in a scene in the finale of Toph making up with her parents, but that is all, that may happen in the upcoming Graphic novels.

    These types of discussions are the ones I really enjoy πŸ™‚

  16. Y&R Said: Comment by Y&R on November 26, 2011 at 3:36 pm | Permalink

    To be honest I felt book 3 was like a completely different show…in a bad way. It was the most random, pointless, and boring season. And I’m not just talking about the first half, I’m talking about the season at whole. There was no overall narrative and it almost seems like the only thing that is necessary to know is that the invasion failed and Zuko joined the gaang. The finale was forced to develop pretty much everything on its own, and it could of been so much better if the season supported it.

    Book 3 had character development? I strongly disagree. That’s the thing, the “character development” of Season 3 isn’t even developing anything that we didn’t know already or that is relevant to the overall narrative. The character development that would be needed,for Ozai, Azula and Zuko simply isn’t there. Out of the so called “character development” there is in book 3, nearly anything that isn’t Zuko related could of been skipped without loosing anything crucial to the plot at all. Still even some stuff with Zuko is pointless like the beach. You can even say that his character development isn’t fulfilling. After learning he is the great-grandson of Avatar Roku what does that do to his character? Nothing, it shows no growth or change in view in Zuko when he’s off to the same life, like nothing happened, in Nightmares & Daydreams. It becomes mere trivia. So then in the DoBS we know he’s going to leave to join the gaang…but why? This truly isn’t explained until the finale, which makes Zuko’s certain change appear truly random. Given what we saw in the season at that point, why would Zuko change sides??? We really only hear him say “I wasn’t myself”, which is extremely vague and left to our own interpretations on what it means. But it is revealed that Zuko leaves because of Ozai’s genocidal plan and that somehow makes him realize the firenation is wrong? Zuko already knows that this is what happened to the air nomads. If he was okay with that, he should see this at the same thing. What makes him realize that this is wrong? Now I know what people will say, but it is left up to SPECULATION. You can Speculate and say that “Oh he being among earth kingdom people understands them and has seen their perspective,” or anything like that, but it is left to our SPECULATION. There is nothing in book 3 that shows us this transition smoothly. So when Zuko finally joined the group, it didn’t feel fulfilling at all. It was more of a “we knew this would happen” sort of thing. And then when I thought there would finally be some movement in the story, then comes these adventures that have nothing to do with the overall narrative at all. Zuko should of told the gaang about Ozai’s plan the second he had a chance to do so. Instead all of this other stuff that only wastes valuable time the series had left. Yes,yes,yes…I know Zuko has to bond with the gaang, but Zuko field trips are not the only way for this to happen. I agree with the idea that Zuko could of bonded with them simultaneously WHILE progressing the main narrative. If he told them the plan early this would be much easier to do. Then this important plot line could be focused on and the lesser ones could be taken out-giving more time to develop the season.

    Why show pointless “character development” for the gaang built of stuff that we basically already know and don’t contribute to the whole narrative, when character development IMPORTANT to the plot is being thrown to the side?

    I say book 1 is very underrated. Book 1 at least had narrative and overall motion of story. Yes it was more episodic, but those episodes actually developed characters and changed them in the long run, as it seems other people have said. They mostly weren’t episodes just made for the sake of creating a character situation that is never brought up again. For example, The Deserter isn’t pointless because it not only introduces characters but the situation it puts Aang and Katara in is important, especially for overall story. This is when healing is introduced and when Aang’s resentment towards firebending is brought up. Most of the episode are made of character development that MOVES the story. For example The storm and The blue spirit show this. I see that all the defending arguments for book 3 can be applied to season 1 better in my opinion. Because book 1 did have development in its episodic format (especially when it was needed), when book 3 didn’t. I say with no hesitation that most people will say the first half of Book 1 was far superior than the first half of Book 3. I do admit Book 2 was better than book 1. But still book 1 has some great aspects to it that I think people forget about.

    I wouldn’t be as harsh a critique if this was some other show, but this is Avatar: the last airbender. Book 3 in no way represents the best the show has to offer. Avatar is a great show and is far more potential than book 3…In my opinion

    I think that they originally planned a way better book 3, but Nick wouldn’t let them go along with it. Not to sound like a conspiracy theorist.


    Airspeed Prime Reply:

    I know for a fact that a lot of fans feel the same way as you. But I think you are leaving out the fact that in book 3 you have all the stuff from book 1 and 2 to aid it and make it better. As for him joining the group and not telling them about the plan, he knew the comet was coming and that they knew about that, how was he to know that they would even consider that Ozai would not do anything with the power of the comet.
    As separate books then you have to say that Book 2 is the most consistent, but that is not the best way to look at things, this is a serialised show so book 1 and 2 help things in book 3.
    Zuko does not leave because of Ozai’s plan, he leaves because of the way he has to act to be accepted by his father, he cannot be himself. Zuko’s character is one who as we see will stand up for those soldiers Ozai was going to sacrifice, he is fundamentally a good character, but to be accepted by Ozai he had to change himself. His constant visits to Iroh tell more of this story, he feels a lot of guilt about this, he realises that Iroh was right all along hence why it is Iroh he looks for first after his confrontation with Ozai. Also he is only accepted because of a lie, he knows that Azula has manipulated the whole situation, all the downfall will be on him not her, he cannot really in anyway be himself. Hence why he is angry at himself in The Beach.
    I do not agree that because Avatar is a great show you have to critique it harshly, there comes a point as a fan of a show that is not a universe (like star wars) where fans just need to accept what actually happened (not to say we cannot criticise, just not be nitpicky) and not what we thought or expected to happen. In Book 3’s case the huge break between book 2 and 3 did not help, it left too long for people to write fan fics and get into their heads what “has” to happen.

    I can on one hand respect your opinion, but I do feel as if you are being way too critical and not even giving the season a chance.
    Book 3 does have the best character development, not from 301 to 321 but rather, we have seen the development from 101 to 220 and with Book 3 we have the characters with a lot of developments under their belts. So we can see many of these developments in action.
    It is massive double standards to in one paragraph say that Many of the early book 3 episodes are pointless yet defend The Deserter for not being this way. I agree with you on the Deserter, but I could give just as good a defence of all those episodes.
    When Zuko gets the reveal that he is related to an Avatar as well as the bad firelords, it reveals a lot for him. That this is part of the reason he struggles so badly to find his path and do the right thing, he has aspects of good and bad in him each pulling him opposite ways. It also connects the thing that Aang gives Zuko hope, not for the fact that Zuko needed him to regain his honour but because he has a familial connection to the Avatar and that leads into his decision to join Aang, his destiny was not to hunt Aang but help him.

    Again I agree that Season 3 could have been done differently, but it wasn’t, this is the way the creators chose to end the show and they did it as they had planned from the start. You can say that you did not like the way it was done, but it doesn’t change that this is what happens.

    I will say that in these opinions everyone could not put down their every single thought on every aspect of every season, so as I and others did and put Book 1 as the 3 best book, that is not to say it is bad, just that we think the others are better.

    This may come across as an attack on you, but I assure you it is not πŸ™‚
    I would love to know your answer to this question πŸ˜€

    Does your how Book 3 went down ruin Avatar as a whole for you ? The reason I ask this is because your post is very negative towards many aspects of Book 3


    Y&R Reply:

    Sorry I don’t think I hit reply correctly, but I responded below. And no problem man, I didn’t take it personally.


  17. Y&R Said: Comment by Y&R on November 29, 2011 at 4:09 pm | Permalink

    Yeah, I’ll admit I’m very negative towards Book 3. However I don’t think book 3 ruined Avatar for me…it couldn’t. I like it too much. But I just imagine how great book 3 could of been and it makes me a little upset.

    I guess you’re right and I’ll have to accept and respect what happened, but my problem is that I never really felt engaged into the season and it never felt like avatar to me.

    But let me argue against just a few points

    “ZukoΓƒΒ’Γ’β€šΒ¬Γ’β€žΒ’s character is one who as we see will stand up for those soldiers Ozai was going to sacrifice, he is fundamentally a good character, but to be accepted by Ozai he had to change himself.” This is true, but we barely get to see that for ourselves in book 3. There should of been more moments between Ozai and Zuko to indicate this, not just in 2 episodes (3 if you count in the finale). Zuko’s change in himself, like you said, involved his values, his benevolence, and what really made him a caring person. Right? But through the season we didn’t actually see Zuko exhibit this (besides just saying it vagely). We see Zuko was getting an assassin to kill Aang and obsessing whether he was alive or not. That isn’t exactly what losing himself would mean. He’s already spent three years in this same pattern. It is more so covering up a lie, which still means Zuko is not being completely honest and not himself, but it is not (or at least should not be) the main reason why he would leave. The problem is that we barely see how Zuko and Ozai interact, how Ozai truly views Zuko.

    “Also he is only accepted because of a lie, he knows that Azula has manipulated the whole situation, all the downfall will be on him not her, he cannot really in anyway be himself.” Sometimes I wonder whether it would of been better to leave the whole Azula lie idea out. They could of had Ozai simply accepting Zuko back because of being such an aid into conquering Ba Sing Se. Then we could see how Zuko would truly lose himself by being back home with Ozai. You might be think “Then what would he do?” but there’s a lot of possibilities with this. Ozai could use Zuko in a way that changes everything good about him. There could of been a resistance that Ozai wanted to crush, and Zuko loses himself in the process of supporting the firenation and his father. And he would realize this, and it would truly be a more satisfying transition when Zuko turns sides for good. In my opinion at least.

    But in covering up Azula’s lie, we never get to see how Zuko changes himself to interact with Ozai. But the thing is, Azula’s lie had potential to be very important but nothing came out of it. It was built up for almost nothing beside making a conflict for the gaang. After Zuko revealed to Ozai that Azula lied, we see nothing happen. Ozai didn’t scold Azula or anything to our knowledge. The only thing it did was bring combustion man into the season.

    OFF TOPIC: I think it could of been a better idea to have Azula lie to Ozai saying Zuko killed the avatar, but Ozai from the beginning KNOW that was a lie from the second she told him that. There would be a scene where we see her tell him the whole thing. Then right after he welcomed Zuko home in 301, he would scold Azula (for the first time) for her dishonestly. And this could of been the beginning of a slow psychological decline for Azula because she’s never experienced it. But then Ozai would still use Azula’s plan and manipulate Zuko claiming that if he defeated the avatar he could defeat the resistance. Then Zuko would lose himself in is efforts to destroy the resistance. In this way Ozai, Azula and Zuko can all be developed all at the same time.

    But for the whole Zuko being kin to Avatar Roku, I mean it was great but it never built anything. Even though it makes some good parallels it doesn’t make an apparent change in the way Zuko acted. What you said is right, but that is how WE see it as an audience. How do we know what Zuko thinks of it without him ever mentioning it again? We can only imagine what he thought of it. But don’t get me wrong I think it is a great idea, but I think it was just wasted when it could of done so much more and at least mentioned once again in the series.

    But I mean I think Zuko’s side of the story would of been the most important for the first of book 3 and yet there’s things that are far less important getting more attention. Actually some filler would not be a problem, but it is a problem when it is taking away from the overall narrative. It would be completely different if the important stuff was addressed and THEN they put in some lighthearted episodes. In my opinion.

    But don’t get me wrong I am an Avatar fan. But I do think book 3 handicapped Avatar’s potential just a little bit. Don’t get me wrong I still think it is great, but simply not as great as it could of been.


    Mako Reply:

    It makes sense but I can’t say I agree with you. I think you could see that Zuko was changing little by little – although I think you’re right about the Azula plot – and that made it all worth it. As I said before, water was equal to Earth in my opinion, I actually enjoyed the fillers although their were a bit too many. I am probably boring you but I think this is good to get our opinions across. Who’s with me though that Fire was the best?


  18. Mike Hawkson Yu Said: Comment by Mike Hawkson Yu on January 28, 2012 at 10:32 pm | Permalink

    I think that book 3 was the best, book 2 in second and the first book in last. I agree that the first season was slow in comparison at the other books but they’re all amazing. we just think they aren’t as good because of the comparison. let me explain. if book 1 had been perfect and fast paced like book 3, how would we have been able to wait for two more seasons of it if it happened so fast. I think water, earth, fire is the perfect order because just like these elements, they all begin to pick up the pace and crescendo into the finale. Had the first season been the most interesting thing ever, books 2 and 3 would have looked terrible in comparison and we wouldn’t have watched. Thus I personally believe it was the creator’s intentions to make it this way and capture the audience over a long period of time instead of making it good and then boring like LOST and so many other good TV shows have eventually become.


    Mako Reply:

    good theory there, probably correct. I have to agree with you except that i thought it was amazing all the way through even with the fillers. Excellent theory.


  19. Keke1107 Said: Comment by Keke1107 on October 13, 2012 at 1:59 pm | Permalink

    I think that book earth is the best, because in my opinion, it gave me a lot of real life advice, that i still use to this day.


    Nico Robin Reply:



  20. Mako Said: Comment by Mako on October 22, 2012 at 10:00 am | Permalink

    nah, I think fire does that. Earth is great and all but Fire was my favourite.


  21. Nico Robin Said: Comment by Nico Robin on June 24, 2013 at 8:15 pm | Permalink

    earth is my fav



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