We’re in Book 3 of Legend of Korra, and things are getting interesting very quickly. The first three episodes set up a new interesting arc for this series with the appearance of new airbenders. Team Avatar has made its way to Ba Sing Se in an effort to rebuild the Air Nomad culture. Meanwhile, three imprisoned criminals have escaped, one of which is a new airbender named Zaheer. Zuko has asked Tonraq, Desna, and Eska to help him track down the evil gang and stop them.
Episode 4: In Harm’s Way
The fourth episode opens with Zuko flying on his dragon to Tonraq, Desna, and Eska, only to find that Zaheer and his gang are approaching to break out another prisoner. The two groups begin to fight, but Ming-Hua, the armless waterbender, succeeds in releasing the prisoner, whose name is P’Li. Despite Zuko’s best efforts, the four fugitives escape.
In Ba Sing Se, Mako and Bolin reunite with Korra and Asami. Mako tells the girls that the Earth Queen has been taking airbenders and forcing them into her army. The whole gang gathers to discuss what to do about the Earth Queen. Jinora offers to project her spirit into an area where it’s probably that airbenders are being kept. When she does so, though, she discovers that the area is deserted. Korra suggests that Jinora connects to Kay the same way Jinora connected to her during harmonic convergence.
In an underground compound, a Dai Li soldier is training airbenders to be ruthless in battle. He is displeased with Kai’s compassion for his fellow benders, and throws Kai in prison. Jinora’s spirit finds him, and the two have a very cute conversation. Jinora finds out that the airbenders are being held beneath the Earth Queen’s castle.
Lin shows up and tells Korra to leave with her immediately because of Zaheer’s escape. Tenzin explains to Korra that when she was young, Zaheer and his gang tried to kidnap her and for that crime, he was thrown in prison. Korra refuses to run away to safety, and instead resolves to finish what she came to Ba Sing Se to do. That night, with Lin’s help, they break out the airbenders and escape in airships.
Tenzin gives each airbender a choice, to be placed in a city somewhere safe or to join him at the Northern Air Temple. All of them want to go with him, which makes Tenzin very emotional. Korra and Tenzin say goodbye and wish each other luck for the future.
Episode 5: The Metal Clan
Lin is watching after Team Avatar when Asami gets a call on the radio about a new airbender in Zaofu, nicknamed the Metal City. Despite Lin’s protests, they travel there to find her. Everyone is very friendly in Zaofu, which is populated by metalbenders, but Lin refuses to get off the ship and gives orders to not reveal that she is present. Korra, Mako, Bolin, and Asami take a tour of the Metal City and are told about Toph, who no longer lives in the city because she left to travel the world, seeking enlightenment, and never returned. Unfortunately, we don’t know if this means Toph is alive or not. Team Avatar meets the mother of the new airbender, who turns out to be Lin’s half sister, Suyin. The two sisters haven’t spoken in 30 years and there is a lot of tension between them.
Zaheer goes to Air Temple Island and his skill level distinguishes him from the rest of the new airbenders. He is disappointed when Kya announces they will all be going to the Northern Air Temple, but that Avatar Korra will not be present. No one recognizes him at first, but one night Kya finds him in Tenzin’s study and realizes who he is. The two fight, but Zaheer flies away and escapes.
Back in Zaofu, Lin and Team Avatar go to meet Suyin’s daughter, Opal. She is a very sweet girl and is immediately attracted to Bolin. Korra tells her that she would like to escort her to the Northern Air Temple, but Su would prefer if Opal stays near her family, so Korra agrees to stay for a while and train her. Everyone has dinner together, during which Varrick shows up. He has teamed up with Su to make technological advances in the city. This infuriates Lin, and she storms out. Korra asks Su about her history with Lin, and Su explains that they had an unconventional childhood that led to them constantly fighting for Toph’s attention. Su admits that she always missed Lin but has given up hope of reconciliation.
Mako and Bolin talk about Opal, and Bolin decides to pursue her. Bolin finds Opal while she is practicing her airbending alone and tries to be smooth, but only succeeds in acting like a fool. Opal reassures him that she wants him to be himself and that he shouldn’t try so hard.
Korra appears, ruining the moment, and asks Opal for her help. The two girls go to Lin, because Opal wants to get to know her aunt. She welcomes Lin into the family, but Lin only yells at her. This angers Korra, and she yells at Lin, telling her that she’ll always be a bitter, lonely woman. Korra storms out and Lin begins crying.
There has already been a lot of character development in this season. Seeing Zuko fight and hearing about Toph as an adult stirs up some nostalgia, and meeting Su opens a window into Lin’s personality and her past. The friendship developing between Korra and Asami is nice to see, as are the budding relationships between Jinora and Kai and Bolin and Opal. Now that Tenzin has new airbenders who are eager to learn, the Air Nomad culture can be rebuilt. The looming conflict between Korra and Zaheer is also being further developed, with the revelation that he once tried to capture her for an unknown reason. We will see what’s in store for us next Friday!