Fans of Nickelodeon’s Avatar: The Last Airbender may finally be able wash away the sour taste of M. Night Shamalan’s live action adaption. On July 21, 2010, Nickelodeon announced that it had greenlit a new spin-off series by original Airbender creators Michael DiMartino and Bryan Konietzko tentatively called The Legend of Korra, a sequel set seventy years after the original. The series will follow the Avatar after Aang, a young water tribe girl named Korra. Unlike the original series, in which the plot revolved around Aang learning every element as fast as he possibly could, Korra will have already mastered water, fire, and earth by the beginning of the story, needing only to master air.

The general consensus seems to be that the new series will be slightly darker and more mature than the original, although Bryan Konietzko did point out in an July 21 interview in the Wall Street Journal that “Even in the first series, it was about war and some pretty serious issues,” so the shift in tone might not be as dramatic as it seems. Another notable change is that the show is supposed to be less of an “on the road” show, and more grounded to one location, namely a place called “Republic City” a city plagued by crime and an anti-bender revolt. “That was another new thing we wanted to do,” said Konietzko in the same July 21 interview, “root it in one big complex location but mainly one place.” The city’s design is said to be based on many different cities, such as 1920’s and 30’s Shanhai and Hong Kong, and is supposed to be powered by steampunk inspired technology.

Regarding the gender of the new Avater, Konietzko has stated that the two creators “just don’t subscribe to the conventional wisdom that you can’t have an action series led by a female character.” The original series established that the Avatar can be either male or female, showcasing previous female Avatars such as Avatar Kyoshi. Korra will be joined in the series by Aang’s son Tenzin, and the show is therefore expected to have the same mix of genders as the original series. Tenzin’s role is primarily to teach Korra airbending. The show is expected to air on Nickelodeon sometime in 2011.


Speakeasy – “Avatar: The Last Airbender’: Nickelodeon Greenlights TV Spin-off ‘The Legend of Korra’

Speakeasy – ‘The Legend of Korra’: The ‘Avatar’ Creators on the New Spin-off’

– Nelly Nickerson

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