Though I understand why this episode needed to be the way it was, I was still pretty disappointed with the episode.
It was enjoyable and extremely watchable, with a few nice moments, but overall I didn’t find it to be a particularly great recap episode given some of the ones I have seen. When you have characters reflecting on the past it opens so many options for cool reactions, and because of the decisions of which characters talked to who I didn’t feel like you got many of these moments.
Mako talks about his relationship with Korra as his family and wu comment, all leading to Mako realising how much Korra inspires him, which is nice, but so much more could have been done if he was with Korra and Asami and Team Avatar talked together.
The Korra, Asami and Tenzin stuff again didn’t do too much, I liked that they brought up what Toph said in a previous episode, but it was just an extended pep talk effectively. So much more could have been done.
The Varrick and Bolin stuff I felt was the best part of the episode as they had fun with it and it really captured some of the Ember Island Players feel, that the other two stories didn’t have. But again, minus Bolin showing how much he cares for Opal I don’t feel like anything was accomplished as it was so focused on Varrick’s crazy mover.
I said it in my video review and I will say it here, IMO this is the worst episode of ATLA and Korra combined. There is a reason for this with the budget, and I feel Mike and Bryan knew they would struggle to make this episode anything special. Once the remaining episodes are of the same quality as the previous 7 this won’t be too big of a deal.
But given that Korra only has 52 episodes overall, this one episode being as it is really makes it standout as a level below the rest especially given that it happened in the final book.
I think it is completely reasonable that many are frustrated with this episode. There are reasons that this episode is the way it is and the fact that Nick forced Mike and Bryan’s hand is very frustrating, but even with that in place, I still feel so much more could have been done than what we got.