- This article is about the character. For the episode by a similar name, see Sozin's Comet, Part 4: Avatar Aang
Avatar Aang, an Air Nomad, is the current Avatar, the manifestation of the world in human form, and thus the only person in the Avatar world who can use all four bending disciplines: Airbending, Waterbending, Earthbending and Firebending. He is also one of the few Avatars to learn Energybending, and the only one to use it during the series.
Before the beginning of the series, Aang was frozen in an iceberg for 100 years. He emerges, still biologically twelve years old, into a world engulfed by war. During his absence, the Fire Nation waged war with the other nations, and managed to completely wipe out the Air Nomads. It falls to Aang, the last of his kind, to put a stop to the war by mastering the other three elements and defeating Fire Lord Ozai. He remains something of a goofy, kind kid at heart, despite the overwhelming loss of his people and the heavy burdens he has been forced to bear.
When Aang was a child, he unknowingly revealed that he was the reincarnation of the Avatar when he chose four toys out of thousands--turtle shell (Water), a string-powered propeller (Air), a Hog Monkey (Earth) and a drum (Fire). These four toys were the same ones that past Avatars had chosen for generations when they were children.
The series reveals nothing about Aang's biological parents. Raised by Airbender monks, Aang grew up in the idyllic surroundings of the Southern Air Temple. Aang was a carefree young boy, given to frequent travel, play, and possessing an almost effortless mastery over his native element. When he was a small child, he, along with the other Airbending children, traveled to the Eastern Air Temple, where he bonded with the young Sky Bison, Appa. Appa would become his partner and companion for the rest of his life. In his youth, he traveled all across the world, and made many close friends from different nations, including Bumi and Kuzon. When he was twelve years old, he invented the Airbending technique, the Air Scooter. This act caused the monks to decree him an Airbending master, and he received the blue arrow-shaped tattoos that all master Airbenders wear. His world drastically changed when the monks revealed that he was the Avatar, destined to master all four elements and bring peace to the world.
Usually, the Avatar is told of his or her true identity only after turning sixteen; however, Aang's caretakers feared that a war between the Four Nations was on the horizon and believed that the Avatar would be needed to help maintain balance. Aang soon began to feel overwhelmed with the burden of his position. His peers ostracized him for his Airbending skill, while his caretakers pressured him to mature too quickly.
The only monk sympathetic to Aang's feelings was the elder Monk Gyatso, Aang's Airbending teacher and guardian. When the burden weighed heavily on his favorite student, Gyatso worked to instill a sense of fun through jokes and games. He sincerely believed that Aang should be allowed to grow up as a normal boy. However, the other monks disagreed. Citing Gyatso's attachment to the boy as interference, they decided to send Aang away to the Eastern Air Temple to focus on his training, oblivious to the fact that Aang had overheard their caucus.
Confused and frightened by what he had learned, Aang fled from his home on his flying bison, Appa, towards the South Pole. While over the Southern Ocean, a sudden storm caused Appa to plunge deep into the sea. Entering the Avatar state, Aang reflexively used Airbending to surround himself and Appa in an air bubble that quickly froze into an iceberg, putting them into a state of suspended animation for the next hundred years.
Book 1: Water
In the present day, two teenage siblings from the Southern Water Tribe - Katara, a Waterbender, and her brother Sokka - discovered and freed Aang from his iceberg. Aang's first thought from being freed from the iceberg was to ask his newfound love (Katara) to go penguin sledding.
Aang soon discovered that in his absence, fears of war had become reality. The very year he vanished, the leader of the Fire Nation at that time, the ruthless Fire Lord Sozin, took advantage of the Firebending-enhancing powers of a mystical comet to launch a war on the three other nations. Unfortunately, to Aang's utter shock and disbelief, the Fire Nation's opening gambit had been a genocidal assault on the Air Nomads. All four Air temples were stormed, and the monks slaughtered, in an effort to break the Avatar Cycle, leaving him as the last known Airbender in existence.
Aang has since realized that the future of the Four Nations rests in his hands. It is his duty to defeat the Fire Nation and restore peace and harmony to the world. To achieve this, Aang and his new friends (and pets) set off on a quest to find and learn from Master Benders, while evading capture by the Fire Nation.
During one of their detours they land on Kyoshi Island (an island named after one of his incarnations), where they were captured by the Kyoshi Warriors; the inhabitants had kept out of the war for the past 100 years and thus were xenophobic to outsiders. The village elder Oyajii and the warrior Suki believed they were Fire Nation spies and were about to throw them to the Unagi, until Aang proved he was the Avatar and they became honored guests in the village. However, Aang's new celebrity status had gotten to his head; causing him to entertain and impress a group of fan girls (much to Katara's dismay). When Prince Zuko arrived on Kyoshi Island, he realized that by staying too long he had endangered the people. Therefore, by tricking the Unagi to spray water over the village, he put out of the flames of the battle and flew away so Zuko would follow him and leave the island.
In another 'detour', he took Katara and Sokka to the Earth Kingdom city of Omashu, where, long ago, his old friend Bumi took him on the world's biggest roller coaster ride on the city's postal system. After their own roller coaster ride, they were arrested for damages and taken before the King; the old King (who seemed to be crazy) encased Katara and Sokka in a strange mineral called "creeping crystal", and would only free them if Aang passed three tests. Afterwards, the King challenged Aang to guess his name, and Aang finally deduced that it was his old friend Bumi. King Bumi told Aang to end the war he must learn all the Bending Arts and defeat the Fire Lord himself.
When trying to help a village tormented by an angry spirit, Aang unknowingly entered the Spirit World. There he was contacted by Avatar Roku's dragon, which led him in his spiritual state to Roku's temple on Crescent Island. By showing Aang various visions of a fiery Comet and beams of light shining towards Roku's statue, Aang realized he could talk with his previous incarnation during the winter solstice.
On the morning of the solstice, Aang and his friends passed through a Fire Navy blockade and entered the Fire Nation, journeying to the Avatar temple. With the help of the Fire Sage that was still loyal to the Avatar, Fire Sage Shyu, Aang managed to enter the inner chamber of the temple. Avatar Roku, who manifested himself when light from the solstice sun struck his statue, warned Aang of Sozin's Comet, a comet that returns once every one hundred years and greatly increases a Firebender's power. Fire Lord Sozin used the power of the comet to start the war a century ago, and Sozin's Comet will return at the end of summer. If Aang does not defeat the Fire Lord before the Comet's arrival, the Fire Nation will be unstoppable, and the Avatar unable to restore balance to the world. Aang despairs that he has not learned the other bending arts and will be unable to complete his training before the Comet's arrival, but Roku assures him that, as his previous incarnations have done, he will succeed.
Although it takes years of discipline and training to master any particular element, Aang must master them all, and defeat Ozai before summer's end.
The Waterbending Scroll
With the knowledge of the Comet's impending arrival, the weight of his duty increasingly agitated Aang. To help relieve his predicament, they landed near a river in front of a waterfall. Aang quickly undresses to his red briefs and but Katara told him to remember the reason that they were there. Sokka asked what he was supposed to do, but Aang tells him to clean out Appa's toes. Katara taught Aang some of her Waterbending skills, only to find Aang faster and better at learning the techniques that took her a very long time to learn, causing her to be jealous. Their Waterbending eventually caused all their supplies to wash downstream, and the group were forced to head to a port market to buy new supplies.
Aang impulsively bought a bison whistle, which does not seem to work, to the chagrin of his friends. They came upon a ship docked with a barker attempting to attract business. The ship's crew were selling items that they acquired by "high risk trading". Sokka quickly surmised they were pirates. Katara saw a training scroll, featuring several Waterbending techniques among their loot, which they were reserving for a wealthy client in the Earth Kingdom. However, the Pirate Captain would offer it to them if they had a better offer (two hundred gold pieces).
They left the ship, only to be chased by the crew. The group escaped, and found the reason they had been pursued: the pirates wanted the scroll Katara had stolen. Katara convinced Sokka and Aang to keep the scroll and learn from it. One of the first techniques they attempted was the Water Whip, a simple technique where water is formed into an elongated shape and snapped at the target. Katara grew even more jealous of Aang as not only did he learn the technique easily, she herself had trouble getting it to work. Her jealousy gets the better of her; she yelled at Aang angrily, but she quickly apologized and gave up the right to use the scroll, and handed it over to Aang. At night, however, she stole the scroll to study the technique again.
Zuko joined forces with the pirates to hunt down Aang, and they find Katara late at night practicing the Water Whip. Zuko captures and ties Katara to a tree, attempting to interrogate her for information on the Avatar, showing her that he holds her mother's lost betrothal necklace in his possession, the last tie that she has to her mother in exchange. However, the pirates demanded the scroll. Yet, Zuko threatens to destroy it if they don't find Aang.
Then, Aang and Sokka are found and captured and are taken to the pirates and Fire Nation ships. Aang and Sokka discover Katara bound to a tree surrounded by Firebenders. As Zuko and the pirates are about to make the trade (the scroll for the Avatar), Sokka convinces the pirates to sell Aang by revealing to them that he's the Avatar, despite Zuko's attempts to keep it a secret from the pirates. The pirates decide that they want to sell Aang to the Fire Lord, and the situation quickly escalates into a battle.
During the fight Aang, Katara, and Sokka escape. Katara and Aang use Waterbending to get the pirates' boat into water and sail away. But the pirates (except for their leader) steal Zuko's smaller ship and start chasing after them. They battle the pirates, Katara learning the Water Whip in the process. Unfortunately, the ship is fast approaching a waterfall. Aang and Katara manage to use Waterbending to stop the ship, but the Pirates ram it with Zuko's boat, sending them falling over, where they are saved by Appa, who heard Aang's bison whistle.
Later, Katara gives Aang a full apology, while Sokka reveals that he was able to regain the scroll in the fighting. Before he could give it to her, he asks what did they learn. She says never steal, except from pirates. Aang and Katara can now practice Waterbending.
The Great Divide
Katara and Sokka begin arguing over their chores in the campsite. Aang ends the fight by having them swap chores. Aang state "Harsh words won't solve anything, action will", and then Momo and Appa fight over a piece of food, which Aang also resolves and begins bragging about his ability to solve problems as the Avatar. Aang and his friends come across the largest canyon in the world, and are planning to fly across on Appa.
Just before they leave, a man runs up to them and starts yelling that they better not leave with the Canyon Guide because he was there first. He is holding a spot for the rest of his tribe (the Gan Jin) until they can arrive. While waiting, another tribe (the Zhang) arrives, a tribe that the man claims has been an enemy of his tribe for 100 years. The Gan Jin tribe arrives, and we can see that this tribe is neat and prim and proper, while the Zhang tribe is dirty and barbaric. The canyon guide, an Earthbender, arrives, and both tribes get into an argument over who gets to go first, the Zhangs say that they should because they have sick people, the Gan Jins say that they should because they have old people. Aang reaches a compromise and suggests that Appa carry their sick and elderly across, while the two tribes travel together across the canyon.
The canyon guide warns them not to take any food into the canyon, as it will attract dangerous predators. After he has broken a rock shelf so that potential Fire Nation soldiers cannot follow them, a Canyon Crawler attacks. Aang and his friends fend it off, but the guide's arms are broken, which means he can't Earthbend and there is no going back. Both tribes argue some more and finally split up. We learn that both tribes brought food into the canyon because they believed that the other tribe must have brought it in, so why should they go hungry while the other tribe eats? Katara and Sokka each learn one side of the story of the feuding tribes. The Gan Jins tell Katara that the forefather of their tribe, Jin Wei, was attacked while transporting the sacred orb during their redemption ritual and robbed by a thief, Wei Jin, from the Zhangs. The Zhangs tell Sokka that their ancestor, Wei Jin, saw Jin Wei passed out on the ground and was returning the sacred orb to Jin Wei's tribe when they wrongfully imprisoned him for 20 years.
They reach the end of the canyon, where they argue some more and prepare to fight and end the feud once and for all. Aang becomes angry and uses Airbending to stop the fight, but in the process reveals the food from both tribes (he even gets entranced by custard tart) and attracts many Canyon Crawlers. By working together and throwing bags over the Crawlers' heads while the Crawlers are distracted with food, everyone is able to ride them up the wall and out of the canyon.
Afterward, the two tribe leaders were about to resume their fight. Aang, upon hearing the names of the two tribes' ancestors, reveals that he knew them, and that they were twins. He says that when they were 8, they played a game called "Redemption". Gin Wei was running with the ball when he fell, and Wei Gin picked it up and started running to the other end of the field when he stepped out of bounds and was put in the penalty box for two minutes.
As they meet Appa on the other side, Aang happily hugs him, and Appa licks his face. The Gan Jin leader thanks Aang, only to be repulsed by the saliva on Aang's face. Finally, the tribes make up and continue their journey to Ba Sing Se together as one tribe (along with the guide who had enough of the canyon). Aang then reveals to his friends that he made up the whole thing, much to their surprise.
The Storm and the Blue Spirit
Aang has a strange dream about his past that clearly troubles him, but does not tell the others. It started happily with Aang, Katara and Sokka unrealistically flying through the skies, but suddenly Aang becomes alone and is trapped in a storm and plunges into the sea...
Aang, Katara and Sokka stop by a market, but then realize they're out of food and money. They run into a fisherman, who hires Sokka, but when he finds out that Aang is the Avatar, he yells at him that "he turned his back on the world". Aang becomes upset, so he flies away into a cave. Katara reprimands the fisherman for his harsh words, and goes after Aang, as a horrible storm begins brewing.
Aang starts telling his story, beginning with the day the monks told him he was the Avatar. Burdened with extra training exercises and ostracized from his friends, Aang becomes confused and afraid: so when he learns that the monks are planning to separate him from his guardian, Gyatso, he decides to run away. Aang is caught in a horrible storm, and as he is about to drown, the Avatar Spirit inside him forms an air pocket, saving himself and Appa but freezing them inside for the next 100 years. Aang suffers terrible guilt over abandoning the world, but Katara convinces him that "it was meant to be", and he "gives people hope".
In abandoned Earth Kingdom ruins also along the western shores, Sokka has fallen ill due to his exposure to the recent storm. He is delusional, and also exhibits flu-like symptoms. Aang learns of a Herbalist who lives at the top of a nearby mountain, and makes plans to travel there to find a cure. The situation worsens when Katara quickly grows sick herself, leaving Aang to travel alone to the herbalist. Aang races through the mountainside, using his Airbending abilities to speed his pace. He soon arrives at the herbalist's home, but not before passing an unnoticed pair of Fire Nation look-outs, who sound the alarm after their station is ripped apart by the winds in Aang's path. After a frustrating meeting with the herbalist, Aang learns that his friends must suck on the frozen bodies of hibernating Wood Frogs, which can be found on the bottoms of riverbeds.
However, he makes little progress towards his destination before encountering the Yu Yan Archers, who waste little time in pinning his boots to the ground with arrows. Aang airbends to defend himself from the succeeding shots, frees his legs, and jumps off of the mountain into the thick forest below. Aang runs out of the woods, and unexpectedly ends up in a murky, partially-frozen river. He finds the frozen frogs he has been looking for, and even while avoiding the Yu Yans' arrows manages to scoop several of the amphibians into his clothing. However, several arrows catch the sleeve of his left arm and pin it to an overturned tree.
Aang is taken back to the fortress, and placed in a cell guarded on the outside by four guards, while his arms and legs are chained and held in place. Admiral Zhao enters the cell, and begins to taunt Aang by bringing up the fact that all the other Airbenders were slaughtered. However, Zhao states that he will not have Aang killed, as such an action would simply result in the Avatar being reincarnated, leaving the Fire Nation to find them again. Instead, Zhao promises to keep Aang alive, though just barely. As Zhao departs, Aang angrily uses his powerful breath to blow Zhao off-balance. However, before leaving, Zhao decides to have the last word, and states that there is no possible way for Aang to escape, and no one will come to rescue him. The frogs, still stuffed in Aang's clothes, begin to thaw and crawl away, despite the young Airbender's protests. Just as several frogs, still partially-frozen, crawl under the door, the mysterious Blue Spirit appears, and deftly defeats the guards in his way. The Blue Spirit slashes through his bonds, and begins to leave the room. Aang questions the Blue Spirit's identity and intentions, but he does not answer, instead silently motioning for Aang to follow him. Aang concludes that this new figure means to help him escape.
During a difficult and violent attempt to escape, a Yu Yan Archer knocks out the Blue Spirit with a single arrow to his forehead. The Blue Spirit falls over instantly, unconscious. Aang immediately airbends up a large dust cloud to conceal himself. He takes off the Blue Spirit's mask to learn that his rescuer is Zuko. He then turns to run and leave the prince behind, but hesitates. When the dust settles, Aang and Zuko have vanished without a trace.
Later, Zuko regains consciousness to discover that morning has arrived, and he is with Aang in a wooded area. Aang speaks nostalgically of Kuzon, a Fire Nation boy he knew as one of his closest friends a century before. He laughs at the thought of how much trouble he got into with his friend. After reflecting, he asks Zuko if under different circumstances they too could have been friends. Zuko pauses, then responds by launching a fire blast, which Aang easily avoids before leaping through the trees. Aang returns to the swampy river to retrieve a new set of frozen frogs. He finally returns to Katara and Sokka, placing a frozen frog in each of their mouths and repeating to them what the herbalist told him. A delirious Sokka asks if Aang made any new friends, to which he sadly replies no, as he rests.
Harsh Lessons in Fire
Venturing through Northwestern Earth Kingdom, Aang and his friends decide go to a cultural festival in a Fire Nation occupied town so that Aang can witness some Firebending, ensuring their safety from attack with disguises (although they acquire masks soon after their arrival). Regardless, it is discovered that Aang is the Avatar after he is forced to "save" Katara from a dragon of fire by using his Airbending, and the three friends quickly attempt to escape from Fire Nation soldiers. Fortunately, their escape is aided greatly by a man named Chey. Chey tells them of a Firebender named Jeong Jeong who deserted the fire nation. Chey takes them to him and after the spirit of Avatar Roku appears to him and persuades him to, he reluctantly agrees to teach Aang Firebending.
Jeong Jeong starts teaching Aang slowly, focusing exclusively on breathing exercises, but the young Avatar desires to learn more advanced Firebending techniques. Jeong Jeong is greatly angered with Aang's lack of discipline, telling Aang vehemently that without control, Firebending will bring nothing but unnecessary destruction, using a former student of his who displayed similar impatience and lack of discipline as an example. Aang quickly apologizes, and says that he is ready to learn Jeong Jeong's way. Jeong Jeong then proceeds to teach Aang to use real fire (much to Aang's enthusiasm). However, his enthusiasm is quickly deflated when Jeong Jeong only assigns him the simple task of preventing a leaf from being completely burned. Jeong Jeong then leaves to other matters, and Aang, still feeling restricted, takes his exercise to the next step and creates fire. Aang plays around with it for a little while, although Katara insists that he be careful. Then he accidentally burns Katara's hands when he attempts to imitate a move the performer made at the festival. Katara runs away crying, and Sokka becomes enraged as a result. Jeong Jeong, having returned, follows Katara into the forest. However, during this time Admiral Zhao (who is revealed to be the former student of Jeong Jeong) and his men locate the camp, and in turn battles Jeong Jeong (although the master's attempt is half-hearted).
Aang, hiding away in Jeong Jeong's hut in order to reflect over his error, is urged by Katara to aid Jeong Jeong. Although Aang feels terribly guilty, and promises to never Firebend again, Katara's revelation of her healing restores his battle spirit. With a fiery display, Jeong Jeong and his men make their escape, while Aang confronts Zhao. Recalling Jeong Jeong's lesson of control, Aang provokes the Firebending master, goading him into destroying his own ships. Zhao can only watch as his ships burn and sink into the river as Aang escapes. Aang demonstrates that some Firebenders have little self-control; Zhao unintentionally destroys his own ships. With Jeong Jeong gone, the three resume their journey and leave the forest, a hard-learned lesson of fire's destructive power fresh in their minds.
The Northern Air Temple
After hearing rumors about flying people, the kids journey to the Northern Air Temple to see for themselves. Upon arrival, they find not Airbenders, but an Earth Kingdom colony led by a mad inventor and his paraplegic son. The inventor has defiled the ancient landmarks with technological "improvements", similar in style to the Industrial Revolution. Aang is at first disheartened by the many changes to the temple, though he develops a degree of respect for the mechanist's son, Teo. Sokka begins to work with the Mechanist and comes up with ways to detect natural gas leaks through use of rotten eggs.
This state of relative happiness was not to last. Aang soon discovers that the Mechanist is supplying the Fire Nation with weapons inside the temple sanctuary where Avatar statues are suppose to be, in exchange for the safety of his newly settled village. He unearths a room filled with monstrous weapons of war, like self-propelled war wagons and attack balloons, all destined for use by the enemy. Later Aang demands to know when the Fire Nation would come for their weapons, the Mechanist states that soon. After that the War Minister Qin appears demanding for his weapons. Aang closes the door and traps the minister, Aang tells him that the deal is off, and slapping him in the face with an Airbending move. War Minister Qin states "the destruction of this temple would be on your head".
However, Aang realizes that they have something the Fire Nation don't have; Air power. Sokka and the Mechanist plan on how to improve the war balloon and how to fight back the Fire Nation using their gliders and the prototype war balloon. Sokka states that there are four different types of bombs; smoke, slime, and fire. When the Mechanist states stink, he replies "never underestimate the power of stink". The gliders fight with courage, but the Fire Nation tanks soon overwhelm them. Every time Aang flips them over, the cockpits also flip. Teo states that the tanks have a water balancing system. Katara use this to fight them, but there are too many.
Appa arrives and retrieves Aang and Katara out of the battles field. Out of explosives, the people lose hope, but the war balloon appears, the Fire Nation doesn't attack seeing the Fire Nation emblem. Sokka drops several slime bombs but that doesn't stop the advancing army. Ultimately, Sokka, in a desperate maneuver, throws the balloon's hot air engine into a crack with explosive gas emanating from it. The resulting explosion crushes the invaders.
Unknowingly, the balloon consequently dropped into the Fire Nation campgrounds. Qin and his soldiers find it, saying, "This defeat is the gateway to many victories" as Firebenders inflate the balloon.
The Waterbending Master
As they progress towards the north, Sokka began to complain that Appa is flying too slowly, Aang defensively replied that they should all climb on Sokka's back and he could fly them to the North pole. Katara tries to soothe the situation remarking that they are all tired and cranky as a result of flying for two days straight. Just as Sokka is voicing his doubts about finding the Northern Water Tribe the group is attacked by Northern Waterbenders who lead them to their Water Tribe.
Outside the great palace of the Northern Water Tribe Sokka and Katara are celebrated as family from the Southern Tribe, and Aang is honored as a special guest. Aang and Katara are then delighted to see the Waterbending Master, Pakku, and his students performing elaborate and elegant Waterbending moves for entertainment. After the Waterbending performance is over, Aang is introduced to Master Pakku. Aang is looking forward to Katara and himself learning Waterbending, after a few days rest. Master Pakku is unimpressed with his work ethic, telling Aang that he will receive no special treatment just because he is destined to save the world. If he is interested in learning Waterbending then they will be ready at sunrise.
The next day as they approach the palace, Katara expresses her joy at being able to learn from a real master, saying she has waited for this day her whole life. However she is horrified to learn from Master Pakku that it is forbidden for women to learn Waterbending. He advises her to go to the healing huts and learn from Yugoda to use her Waterbending to heal. Although Aang initially refuses to learn from Master Pakku, outraged at the unfairness, Katara makes him return by saying that he can't risk his training for her. So Aang begins to reluctantly learn from Master Pakku.
Sokka suggests that at night Aang teach Katara everything he has learned in the day. Katara is excited at this idea, it allows her to learn Waterbending and Aang will have someone to practice with, everyone will be happy. Sokka remarks that he's not happy, but Katara dismisses this by saying that Sokka's never happy, and she and Aang hurry outside to begin practicing. They look up to the bridge above them to see Master Pakku, angry that Aang has disrespected him, his teachings and his entire culture. Aang hastily apologizes, but Master Pakku refuses to teach Aang anymore, saying he is no longer welcome as his student, before leaving.
The next day at the palace, Katara pleads with Chief Arnook to make Master Pakku take Aang back as his student. Master Pakku agrees to continue training Aang on the condition that Katara swallow her pride and apologize. Katara, angered by his pomposity and condescending attitude challenges him to a fight instead of apologizing (gesturing emphatically as she does so and unintentionally Waterbending huge cracks in the ice floor and smashing two pots).
Katara goes to wait outside for Master Pakku, who simply strolls past her, further angering her with patronizing comments. Katara, her temper pushed to breaking point, forms a water whip and slaps Master Pakku on the back of the head. He turns around and agrees to the fight, telling her if she wants to learn so badly, to study closely. The fight begins and it is discovered that Katara is much more advanced in Waterbending than previously known. She demonstrates amazingly powerful techniques she never used before during the fight. The two are able to manipulate the water and snow around them amazingly, using basic and advanced Waterbending techniques. Master Pakku grins and smirks as he attacks, but when Katara launches discs of ice at him, he appears to realize how skilled she is as a Waterbender. After a few moments of violent Waterbending, it seems Katara has the upper-hand, as she topples ice-obelisks over Master Pakku, who disappears in a cloud of mist. But, Master Pakku quickly emerges and performs a Waterbending move that renders Katara helpless, and she is beaten. Her grandmother's necklace, which fell off during the fight, is picked up by Master Pakku and it is discovered that he made it for Kanna (Katara's Gran-Gran) 60 years ago.
Master Pakku tells Katara that her grandmother left the arranged marriage to begin her life in the South Pole. Katara understands that she refused to let her tribe's customs rule her life. At the end, although the Waterbending Master has not changed his rather harsh methods of teaching, Master Pakku has taken both Katara and Aang as students.
Siege of the North
Zhao begins to launch his attack against the Northern Water Tribe. Under the tutelage of Master Pakku, Katara's Waterbending skills have improved to the degree she can defeat all of his pupils with ease. To both Pakku and Katara's annoyance, the same cannot be said for Aang. Meanwhile, Sokka takes Princess Yue on a ride on Appa, during which they nearly kiss. Soot begins to fall, Sokka recognizes it from when his tribe was attacked, and he knows that a massive attack is approaching.
The Northern Water Tribe prepares to defend itself from invasion and Sokka volunteers for a dangerous mission where several warriors will be forced to infiltrate the Fire Nation fleet. As the walls of the prestigious city begin to fall, Aang feels duty bound to prevent the same fate that befell the Air Nomads and the Southern Water Tribe. However, he finds that against such a vast fleet, he does not stand a chance and retreats in exhaustion.
Princess Yue, after relating the origins of the Water Tribe and its power, gives Aang an idea. If he can tap into the spirit world and meet with the Moon and Ocean Spirits, perhaps they can help him defeat the Fire Nation. Yue takes Katara and Aang to a hidden oasis and the most spiritual place in North Pole. Aang enters a trance after staring at the two koi fish in a pool and heads off into the spirit world. Katara is left to protect Aang. When Zuko arrives, Katara duels him, and with the power of the moon, is able to temporarily defeat Zuko. However, the sun rises and it enhances Zuko's power, allowing him to defeat Katara. Zuko then kidnaps the Avatar while Katara is left unconscious until Yue brings Sokka and Appa back to The Spirit Oasis.
Zhao's invasion breaks through the outer wall of the Northern Water Tribe's defenses, and he reveals a sinister plan. Zhao wants to kill the mortal manifestation of the moon spirit in order to destroy the moon, which would greatly weaken the Water Tribe.
Aang goes to the spirit world for help and is advised by Avatar Roku to see Koh, one of the oldest spirits in existence, but must be extremely careful when he does. Aang visits Koh, who steals faces if emotions are shown. After finding out that one of his past lives tried to kill Koh, Aang questions him and realizes that the white and black koi he saw swimming in the oasis are the moon and ocean spirits, Tui and La respectively. He returns to the physical world with the help of a friend, Hei Bai, and escapes from Zuko due to the timely arrival of Katara, Sokka, and Princess Yue on Appa. Zuko and Katara have a rematch but due to the moon being out this time, Katara easily defeats him in a matter of seconds. Aang takes the unconscious Zuko with him, despite some disagreement from Sokka and Katara.
When Aang returns to the oasis, Zhao has already captured the white koi fish. Immediately, the moon glows red, creating a lunar eclipse and color seeps from the world. Iroh threatens Zhao against harming the Spirit of the Moon, and Zhao appears to listen, returning the koi. However, Zhao suddenly throws fire at the koi, killing it. The moon vanishes altogether from the sky. Iroh retaliates as promised and Zhao slips away. Iroh and Katara attempt to revive the Moon Spirit, but it is too late. Aang suddenly fuses with the Ocean Spirit into a giant spirit creature and massacres the Fire Nation's invasion force. A scene shows the creature observing the retreating fleet, and the next scene shows the fleet completely gone—suggesting that the Avatar mercilessly wiped out the entire fleet, to the last man. While Aang is destroying the Fire Navy, Princess Yue reveals to the others of how she when she was born she was saved by the moon spirit. She gives her life so that the moon spirit can live. Yue then becomes the moon spirit and once Aang realizes the moon is back, he leaves the Avatar State.
After the battle, Pakku reveals to Katara his intention to head for the South Pole and help rebuild the tribe. He assigns Katara as Aang's new Waterbending master.
Book 2: Earth
The Avatar State
On the ship of a few Northern Water Tribe men a while later, Aang has a dream that he is in "Avatar State", but is outside his body and witnessing it firsthand which frightens him. He wakes up, on a Northern Water Tribe boat that is heading for the earth kingdom. Aang, Katara, and Sokka leave the rest on the boat and set off for Omashu to learn Earthbending from King Bumi.
Aang and the gang meet Fong, an Earth Kingdom general, who believes Aang is wasting time learning bending and should just try to trigger his Avatar Spirit and go after the Fire Nation. Aang feels so guilty over the casualties of the war he agrees. First, they try using a stimulant tea whose effects on Aang are more equivalent to a sugar-rush. Next, Sokka tries to scare him into the Avatar State. Lastly, they try mixing the four elements together but it ended up into mud which Aang sneezed on everyone.
In the meantime, Aang realizes that he should not try to trigger his Avatar State. Hoping that Fong would understand, Aang confronts him, but Fong foolishly tries to trigger the Avatar State by ordering his troops to attack Aang. When that fails, Fong uses his Earthbending to bury Katara. This enrages Aang, who falls under the Avatar State. Fong tries to explain that he had faked Katara's death in order for him to get into the Avatar State. However, Aang uses a powerful wave of Earthbending to defeat Fong and his troops. Aang is subdued only when Avatar Roku communicates to Aang during the battle. Briefly taking Aang into the spirit world, Roku explains that the Avatar State empowers the Avatar with the skills and knowledge of all his past lives. While in the Avatar State, Aang is at his most powerful, but he is also very vulnerable. Should an Avatar die while in this state, Roku warns, the Avatar Cycle dies with it and the Avatar will cease to exist. With the explanation completed, Roku returns Aang to his body.
Having regained his senses, Aang sees the damage that he has caused and feels ashamed. General Fong, on the other hand, is overjoyed that Aang entered the Avatar State and suggests that they begin finding a way to control the Avatar State. Sokka knocks Fong out before Fong can think of any more ideas and the group decide to proceed to Omashu without an escort.
The Cave of Two Lovers
While the friends are relaxing a group of Earth Kingdom nomads appear, displaying the characteristics of a carefree, nature loving people. Once the Avatar's group reveal their plans to travel to Omashu, the Earth nomads speak of a short cut through a tunnel passing under a mountain. Although Sokka does not want to trust these new characters, the kids later follow the nomads to the tunnels after an unsuccessful attempt to fly over the mountains.
Just before our heroes enter, the leader of the nomads mentions that the tunnels form a labyrinth protected by a curse. Only those who put their trust in love can find the way through; those who don't will be forever lost. Sokka plans to create a map while traveling though the labyrinth, but gradually finds that the map is useless due to the fact that the tunnels are changing around them. The Group then gets separated during a cave-in. Aang's quick action saves everyone from being crushed by the falling rocks, but the group is separated. Aang, Katara, and Appa are in one group, while Sokka and Momo are forced (to his great displeasure) to travel through the tunnels with the musical nomads, who assure him that he should not "let the falling rocks turn his smile into a frown".
After traveling for what is estimated at three hours, Aang and Katara encounter a large tomb designed for the "two lovers" spoken of in lore. By reading script around the walls, they discover the true story of the "two lovers". The final line in the script states "love is brightest in the dark". Katara is inspired by this to suggest a possible way to solve the labyrinth; perhaps by following the example of the lovers and kissing, she and Aang could find the way out. Although Aang (due to his unexpressed but growing affection for Katara) finds this idea highly intriguing, he attempts to reassure Katara that he could not imagine kissing her. When she seems put out by this response, he assures her that what he meant was that, in choosing between certain death and kissing her, he would definitely choose to kiss her ("It's a compliment!") This cools the ardor between them for a while, but later, as the torches are burning out, desperation (and possibly affection) led them to dare the unknown. As the torchlight fades, we see them leaning toward each other, closing their eyes and as confirmed in an interview by Mae Whitman (the voice of Katara) they did kiss. In the resulting darkness, Aang and Katara find out that the two lovers put glowing crystals showing how to get out of the tunnel, and these crystals only glow in the dark. Finally, the two (plus Appa) get out of the tunnel. Soon after, the group is finally reunited. Concluding this, Aang, Sokka, and Katara finally get to Omashu. When the gang sees the Fire Nation has taken Omashu they are devastated.
Return to Omashu
Despite the dangers of being caught, Aang decides to go off and try to find Bumi, although, Katara believes that it might be time for Aang to get a different Earthbending teacher. Aang explains to Katara that Bumi is not just an Earthbending teacher, he is a friend. Aang, Sokka, and Katara find their way into the city by going through a sewer and emerge from it unharmed save for Sokka who has several creatures called Pentapuses stuck to his face. These turn out to be harmless, and Aang removes them from Sokka's face. Not two seconds pass and they encounter a Fire Nation soldier who questions why they are out during curfew. Aang quickly covers the arrow on his head with a piece of cloth and Katara says that they were just on their way home, and the soldier decides to let them go. Just as they were leaving, the soldier notices the marks left by the Pentapuses and asks about them. Katara quickly says that he has "Pentapox", a very contagious disease. The soldier runs away in fear, thus they avoid capture.
In Omashu, a Fire Nation General, wife, baby son, and daughter Mai find out about Aang's presence in Omashu. Mai chases after Aang and tries to kill him by throwing hails of flying daggers at him. However Aang gets away and leaves Mai puzzled about where he had gone. The trio wonders where all the Earthbenders have gone and an Earth Kingdom General reveals that King Bumi surrendered to the Fire Nation and that the rest of the Omashu Army were mad at him for not telling them to attack. Aang devises a plan to give all the citizens a fake disease. The Fire Nation General orders all citizens to be evacuated.
Once Aang finds Bumi, Bumi explains to Aang the value of Jing, or battle strategy. Aang says that he knows all about them and says that there's Positive Jing when one is fighting and Negative Jing when one is retreating. Bumi adds that there is Neutral Jing when one does nothing. Aang is surprised that there is a third one, and Bumi reveals that there are 85 in total, but tells Aang to focus on the Neutral Jing part. Bumi says that he deliberately allowed the city to be captured by the principle of Neutral Jing, where one should wait for a better time to strike and remain in place until then. This principle is the key to Earthbending. Realizing the value of Bumi's judgment, Aang leaves on Appa while Bumi bends his way up the mail shaft again.
Visions in the Swamp
Sokka and Katara are flying on Appa above a giant swamp. Aang stares at the swamp in a sort of hypnotic trance and starts lowering themselves into the swamp. When Sokka starts explaining what is happening to Aang, he comes out of his "trance" and starts telling Sokka and Katara that the swamp is "calling him". Sokka tries to convince Aang that there is nowhere to land and to move on, but Aang is still interested because of what King Bumi told him about listening to the Earth. Sokka, who is usually stubborn, says to ignore it. Aang starts to leave once Katara, Appa, and Momo start to complain about the swamp. Unfortunately, an oddly located tornado comes right toward the gang and they fall down with much force.
Aang, Katara, and Sokka are separated from Appa and Momo due to landing in different places. Aang begins to search for Appa and Momo. Aang returns having not found Appa and Momo. He also says that the tornado just disappeared. The trio led by Sokka try to find their animal friends with Sokka chopping everything in sight with his machete. Aang tells Sokka to be "Nice to the swamp". Katara agrees with Aang, as she feels some supernatural qualities in the swamp. She claims that it feels "alive". Sokka keeps chopping around anyway. Aang says that the longer they stay there, the more he thinks Sokka shouldn't do that. Though Katara and Aang still believe something supernatural is going on in the swamp, Sokka dismisses their concerns. They later see strange glowing eyes and get a little scared. The strange thing that was looking at Aang is shown again, still unseen. This time it grabs each of them with its vines. They wake up from their sleep, and each manages to escape from the vines using their styles of fighting. The trio all end up in separate places.
Aang sees a strange girl with a pet flying boar giggling at him. Aang begins to chase her. He keeps chasing the girl, but she disappears and the trio is reunited. They reach the center of the swamp, which is a giant tree. Aang believes that the swamp was calling them there. All of a sudden, the giant monster who earlier had grabbed Aang appears.
Aang and Katara finally defeat the swamp monster who is really a Waterbender, bending the water in the vines. He says the swamp is just one big tree, stretching out its roots for miles. He also says that the whole world is one organism like the swamp. If you listen carefully, he explains, then you can hear everything breathing together because everything is connected. He goes on to explain each person's visions. In the swamp, people have visions of people they have lost, though they are not really gone because everyone is connected. Aang's vision continues to perplex him because he is certain he has never met the girl, but realizes he will meet her in the future. Aang then discovers that if he listens to the earth, then he can find Appa and Momo. Aang goes into a semi Avatar State, and a glowing line draws him straight to Appa and Momo. Aang and Katara confront the natives to free Appa and Momo, and the natives, revealed to be Waterbenders.
Once in an Earth Kingdom village, the three kids learn of "Avatar Day". They watch a parade with giant floats that are made to look like Kyoshi, Roku, and Aang. The trio at first believed that the festival is honoring the Avatar, but then a man torches the three floats to the loud approval of the village, who chant, "Down with the Avatar!"
Aang reveals himself as the Avatar, only to be arrested. While in his jail cell, the village's mayor explains to him that "Avatar Day" was formed after Avatar Kyoshi killed the village's leader, Chin the Great. To prove Aang's (or rather, Kyoshi's) innocence, Sokka and Katara search the village and return to Kyoshi Island to find evidence that says otherwise. Unfortunately, the evidence is useless because in these trials, the opposing sides only tell what they believe happened. Using only the two stories, the jury decides who is innocent and who is guilty; for this case, the village mayor serves as both prosecution and jury. Meanwhile, Aang, still in his jail cell, has become somewhat friendly with the other prisoners. One of them offers him advice about girls (that is, Katara).
During Aang's trial, after hearing the village major's story and Aang's vague version, he is found guilty. Refusing to give up, Sokka and Katara have Aang dress up in Kyoshi's old uniform.
Surprisingly, Kyoshi manifests herself through Aang's body (like how Avatar Roku did). She announces to the village that she did indeed kill Chin the Great (or "Conqueror", as she calls him), but it was for a good cause. Once Kyoshi's spirit disappears, the village brings out a wheel for Aang to spin to determine his punishment. It lands on "boiled in oil", but before the sentence can be carried out, the Fire Nation bandits, the Rough Rhinos, arrive to take over the village. Fearing for his safety, the mayor quickly changes the punishment to community service, and pleads with Aang to defeat the warriors and save the village. The trio engages the warriors in battle and is successful in driving them away, Sokka regaining his boomerang during the battle. In an act of thanks, the mayor decides that in the future, Avatars will be honored on "Avatar Day". Since Aang was not boiled in oil on this day, the celebration will involve eating effigies of the Avatar made from uncooked dough.
The Blind Bandit
Aang and the trio go to the town of Gaoling to continue his search for someone to teach him Earthbending. While searching, he gets a free Earthbending lesson from Master Yu, but he finds that Master Yu cares more about having him pay for lessons then he does about teaching him Earthbending. Afterwards, they hear from a pair of students about Earth Rumble VI, a Lei Tai tournament featuring several powerful Earthbenders. The boys are not very inclined to help Aang with the location, until Katara uses her "feminine charm", which involves freezing them to the walls, to convince them to tell.
At the tournament, they see a powerful Earthbender named "The Boulder", who defeats every challenger he comes across. Sokka completely gets into it, but Aang is not very impressed, saying that the Boulder is "just listening to his muscles". The Boulder defeats several other contenders, until he works his way up to the current champion, The Blind Bandit, a blind Earthbender who happens to be Toph, a 12 year-old girl. Aang notices the Bandit's techniques, especially how she waits and listens carefully to the movements of her opponent, and realizes that she is the type of person that Bumi said would make a good Earthbending teacher. He also realizes that she is the girl whom he saw in his vision in The Swamp.
The announcer of the tournament, Xin Fu, offers a large sum of gold to whoever can defeat the Blind Bandit in a fight. Seeing an opportunity to talk to the Bandit, Aang challenges her. While Aang wants to talk, the Bandit is ready for a fight, and she refuses to engage in conversation. Unfortunately, she is not ready to face an Airbender, and is defeated when Aang blows her off the ring. The Bandit takes badly to her loss, and storms off, refusing to even listen to Aang.
Later, Aang and the others return to Master Yu's school to try to find out where the Blind Bandit lives. Talking to the same boys Katara "asked" about the tournament (who are now quite intimidated by her), they do not get much information, until Aang remembers the flying boar he also saw with the girl in his vision. The boys tell them that the flying boar is the symbol of the Bei Fong family, the wealthiest family in the town.
Aang and company travel to the family's house, where they are accosted by the Bandit, now wearing the same dress Aang saw her wearing in the Swamp. The girl, Toph, does not want to help them, and calls the house guards to chase them off.
That evening, Aang uses his name to gain a formal audience with the entire Bei Fong family. He tries to get her father to talk her into helping him, but Toph uses her Earthbending to keep him from saying anything revealing. Her parents and teacher are completely unaware about her true skill, and she wants to keep it that way. After numerous Earthbending interruptions, Aang retaliates, bringing the dinner to both a premature end and into everybody's face.
After dinner, Toph approaches Aang to call a truce, and talks with him. Her parents, seeing her as a weak and fragile child due to her blindness, treat her as being far more helpless than she really is. So she began sneaking out of the house and mastering Earthbending on her own, secretly competing in tournaments and surpassing her "teacher" in skill. Suddenly, the pair are ambushed and captured by Xin Fu and his stable of Earthbenders, who want their money back. Toph is later freed and, after defeating Xin Fu's earthbenders, rescues Aang.
As Aang and the others get ready to leave, Toph runs up to them, saying that her father changed his mind, to allow her to travel with them. Sokka wisely offers to leave quickly before her father "changes his mind again". Toph is ready to go, but she wants to show Aang one thing first. Aang hops down, and she promptly launches him into a tree. Toph, declaring them even, demands to have her championship belt returned.
Team Avatar is now being pursued by a train-like machine belonging to Azula, Mai and Ty Lee. Their machine allows the girls to proceed at great speeds, disallowing the group to stop and rest. Aang and his friends repeatedly try to escape, until Katara and Toph's differences get the better of them and Toph leaves the group after a bitter fight.
Aang attempts to deceive Azula by leaving a false trail of Appa's shed fur, telling Katara, Sokka and Appa to go somewhere safe. Unfortunately, Azula anticipates his plan, sending Mai and Ty Lee in the direction she believes the group to have gone, and follows Aang's fabricated trail herself.
Azula finds him in an abandoned town. She and Aang stand facing each other at a stand off, soon joined by Zuko, who takes up a fighting stance between the pair, making it a triangle of enemies. Azula fires the first shot, hitting Zuko hard and knocking him back. All three exchange blows until the duel is joined by Katara, Sokka, Iroh, and Toph. The six of them manage to create a semicircle in front of Azula and back her in a corner. She surrenders, and for one brief second Iroh lets his guard down, turning to see his comrades. Azula takes advantage of this and looses a blast of fire at him, striking him in the chest. Zuko lets out a horrified cry, and all four benders unleash their power against her. After or during the large explosion that results, Azula disappears, blocking the attack with a fire shield. Aang, Katara, Sokka and Toph gather around Iroh but Zuko yells at them, telling them to go away and backing up his words with a sweeping arc of flame. Aang respects his need for privacy, leading the group away.
Aang awakes from his sleep, excited that he will finally begin his Earthbending training with Toph. He enthusiastically asks her what they will do first, and Toph replies that they will simply learn how to move a rock. Toph teaches Aang that Earthbending requires a firm, steady stance. She demonstrates the technique by sending a rock into a wall. Aang tries to emulate her, but he ends up hitting the rock with Airbending and propels himself backwards.
Aang, gets confused with why he cannot move the rock, while in his correct stance. He tries to find an alternate solution, but Toph explains that creative thinking is the problem. Earthbending requires a head-on approach. Aang then trains by doing several activities involving rocks. He starts to become successful with the many different training activities.
Toph decides that Aang will stop a rock. Toph puts a blindfold around Aang's eyes and rolls a boulder down a steep hill towards him. Aang then flinches and jumps over the rock. Toph yells at Aang and calls him a wimp. Katara tries to console Aang by teaching him some more Waterbending.
In a marsh, Aang is moving a small mass of water with Katara. She tries to tell Aang to face the issue instead of avoiding it. Aang, however, is unable to do that. Katara explains that Aang is working with his opposite element, earth. Katara then surprises Aang by throwing a reed at him. Aang is able to use water to cut the reed into two pieces before it reaches him. Katara congratulates Aang for having reflexes of a master Waterbender and Aang replies to her as Sifu (teacher) Katara.
Toph taunts Aang about his submissiveness by abusing his staff. She walks away, but Katara arrives, saying that Sokka has not been found yet. Aang and Katara split up to search for Sokka. Aang then finds Sokka, stuck in a hole while he tried to hunt. Sokka then asks Aang to help, but Aang refuses to ask Toph.
The critter (that Sokka attempted to hunt) returns, and Aang identifies it as a Saber-Tooth Moose-Lion cub. Then the mother of the cub arrives, and she is furious. The mother saber tooth moose-lion starts to attack Aang and Sokka. Aang tries to initially avoid it, but he eventually faces the mother head-on and sends her away. Toph, who was silently observing the conflict, congratulates Aang, but Aang demands that she give his staff back. Toph then says that Aang is thinking like an Earthbender. Aang finally is successful at Earthbending a rock. Toph then drags Sokka out of the hole.
Each of the members of Aang's group decides to take a little "mini-vacation", as a way to unwind after all the work they've done; Sokka, on the other hand, thinks the group should be working on getting intelligence on the Fire Nation, most specifically a map for when Aang must hunt down the Fire Lord. The group meets Professor Zei, who tells them he is searching for a legendary library said to be in the middle of a nearby desert; the library, said to have been created by the spirit of knowledge and his fox servants, has more valuable tomes than any other place in the world. Sokka, believing he may be able to get information on the Fire Nation there, dedicates his "vacation" to finding the place.
Using Appa to fly, the group soon finds the library, which is buried in the sand, except for its single, highest tower. Aang, Katara, Sokka, Momo and Professor Zei use a window to enter the library; Appa stays outside, of course, as does Toph, who cannot read since she is blind. Toph also mentions that, because of the desert sand, she cannot feel the vibrations in the ground as well as she normally can, making her lose her usual advantage.
When the group enters the library, they meet the spirit, Wan Shi Tong, who constructed the library; taking the form of a large owl, the spirit initially does not trust them. The spirit, apparently, dislikes the fact that humans only use knowledge to get an advantage over other humans; he brings up the last human to have discovered his library, who happened to be Admiral Zhao (Zhao mentions a library in "Siege of the North"), and believes the group only wants to get information to help them defeat their enemies (which is, of course, true). But they convince him otherwise.
Sokka finds a burned paper that mentions "the darkest day in Fire Nation history;" it has a date but no other information. It also turns out that Zhao, before leaving, apparently destroyed every other bit of information about the Fire Nation, probably to prevent exactly what Sokka and the others are trying to do. However, a fox (one of Wan Shi Tong's animal helpers) finds the group, and leads them to a room dedicated to astronomy. There, a date can be entered on a stone wheel, which then shows the heavens on that particular date; when Sokka enters the date of "the darkest day", it shows a solar eclipse occurring. The group realizes that solar eclipses must weaken or take away their Firebending, in the same way lunar eclipses affect Waterbending; they realize they can use this information to plan an attack on the Fire Nation forces.
Soon, however, Wan Shi Tong finds out their plans, and decrees that he will no longer allow humans to misuse his beloved information; he attacks the group, while the library begins to sink, that way it will be completely underground forever. Outside, Toph begins to hold up the tower using her Earthbending, so that the others can escape; however, at the same time "Sandbenders" attack. Desert tribesmen, they travel in boat-like materials, using their bending to travel; they come and begin to abduct Appa, while Toph finds it impossible to hold up the tower and simultaneously fight them. They make off with Appa and escape.
Inside the Library, Aang and Sokka hurriedly try to use the astronomy room to find the next date of a solar eclipse; it turns out the next one is in a few months. They plan to give this information to the Earth Kingdom armies of Ba Sing Se to help in the war. The group then quickly escapes, except for Professor Zei, who says he would rather spend eternity in the Library, than see it vanish forever; the others have no choice but to leave him. They escape before the Library vanishes into the sand; however, the episode ends with Toph telling Aang that Appa has been stolen by sandbenders.
Infuriated, Aang unreasonably blames Toph for Appa's kidnapping. Seeing how everyone is more focused about making their way through the desert than his lifelong friend, Aang flies off on his own in search of Appa. In the end, Aang's search proves to be fruitless, with him engendering a gigantic mushroom cloud in frustration. After returning to the others, the group continues their trek through the endless desert, with Aang acting despondent, if not outright hostile and bitter, over their situation all the way. The group eventually comes across an abandoned sand sailor and compass, which they used to travel to a large rock formation in the desert's center. There, they are attacked by a hive of Buzzard Wasps, one of which Aang viciously strikes down after attempting to take Momo.The group then encountered the Sandbenders themselves, one of whom Toph identified as the person who stole Appa. Aang demanded to know where his bison was, threateningly obliterating their desert sailers one by one before slipping into the Avatar state. The Sandbender Ghashuin confessed that he had traded Appa over to some merchants and was probably in Ba Sing Se by now where he would be sold. The wind and sands twist around Aang as he proceeds to fully enter the state. Katara, however, manages to make her way to him and calm him down. Tears roll down his face as he falls into her arms and out of the Avatar state.
To Ba Sing Se
After the group gets out of the desert, they meet a refugee family with a pregnant mother traveling to Ba Sing Se. The group helps the family to an underground ferry way that leads to the city. While there Sokka and the others are reunited with the Kyoshi Warrior, Suki who was there helping war refugees. Later the family loses their documents so Aang, Katara, Toph, Sokka, and Suki agree to help them cross the Serpent's Pass.
As the group travels along a sheer cliff side of the pass, Suki points out Fire Nation forces patrolling the water, telling them that they are rumored to be working on a secret project. As they continue, Tahn falls when the ground under him crumbles. Toph saves him, but the falling rocks draw the attention of the patrol ship, which launches a fireball at them. Aang leaps into action, knocking the ball back and striking their engines. The ship returns fire, hitting the rock face above them, and sending debris falling towards Suki. Sokka pushes Suki out of the way, and Toph saves him by deflecting the rocks. Sokka is too worried about Suki's safety to be thankful to Toph for saving his life, which annoys Toph. The group runs to the shelter of an outcropping wall of rock, leaving the ship behind to tend to its damage.
That morning, Aang's group comes to a large setback: A portion of the pass is currently underwater. Katara steps forward, parting the waters to allow them to pass. As the path gets deeper, Aang helps her, forming a bubble of air for them to walk underwater safely. Momo, seeing the fish swimming by, jumps out into the water to catch one, but quickly jumps back in when something huge swims by. As it turns out, Serpent's Pass is named (and feared) not for its shape, but for the gigantic sea serpent that swims in the surrounding waters. The serpent attacks the bubble, forcing Toph to raise the seafloor under their feet to bring them up to the surface. This strands them in the middle of the water, with the serpent circling around. Aang attacks the serpent, telling Katara to get the others across while he distracts it. Katara creates an ice bridge for the others to cross, then leaps to help Aang without a second thought. Together, Aang and Katara manage to drive off the serpent, using currents to slam it into the cliff. The group finally crosses the Serpent's Pass, just in time for the mother to go into labor. Katara, who's had experience in birthing children, quickly takes charge.
The baby, a girl, is born with no complications, thanks to Katara. Aang, seeing the family coming together, renews his hope, which is what the family decides to name the baby. Aang chooses to go on ahead of the group to find Appa, but before he goes, he tells Katara how he feels about her. Aang flies over to the wall of Ba Sing Se, where he makes a terrible discovery: A massive drill, escorted by Fire Nation tanks, is approaching the wall.
After Aang reunites with his friends and they meet with General Sung, the group tries to figure out a way to destroy this drill. Sokka eventually gets the idea of taking it out by striking it from the inside, on its pressure points. While Toph tries to slow it down from the outside, Aang, Katara and Sokka sneak inside to sabotage the drill. After ambushing an engineer and finding a set of blueprints, the group figures out that they need to cut through the braces that hold the machine together with Waterbending. After long and exhausting work, Katara and Aang only manage to cut through one brace. Knowing that they will never destroy the drill in time at this rate, Aang suggests they only cut partway through the braces, then deliver a final blow at the top.
Later, just as they decide that they've cut through enough braces and go to the top, the group is attacked by Azula, Mai and Ty Lee. Deciding to split up, Sokka and Katara try to leave the drill while Aang goes to deliver the final blow. When he gets to the top, he finds the Earth Kingdom soldiers dropping boulders on the drill and him. After cutting a wedge in the metal with Waterbending, he shapes one of the boulders into a spike. Just as he is finished carving the wedge, he is attacked by Azula, resulting a furious duel, during which Aang is briefly knocked unconscious, and almost falls off the drill. He manages to run part way up the wall and destroys the war machine, splattering the wall and spectating general with muddy water.
Life in Ba Sing Se
Riding the Earth rail, the group finally enters Ba Sing Se. Sokka is confident that they will easily find Appa, but the city is bigger than they imagined. Soon after they arrive, Aang and his friends are met by Joo Dee; a cheerful, incessantly smiling woman assigned to guide them around the city. Attempts by Sokka to try and get their guide to talk about the war and a possible audience with the Earth King are invariably ignored.
In the upper ring, Aang and his group are finally taken to their new home. When a possible audience with the Earth King is finally mentioned, it is revealed that they will have to wait at least a month. It soon becomes apparent that within the walls of the city, no one wants to talk or even think about the war raging in the rest of the world. Even Aang's attempts to find Appa doesn't bear any fruit as no body seems willing to divulge any information to them, thanks to some meaningful glances from Joo Dee. Along the way they also see members of the Dai Li — elite guards who ensure safety to Ba Sing Se's culture and society.
Katara makes a plan to sneak with Toph into a party to receive an audience with the Earth King. Aang and Sokka eventually arrive (after Katara and Toph) at the palace and manage to get in through the side entrance disguised as servants. Aang is soon exposed as the Avatar, but he quickly smoothes things over with a display of his abilities to entertain the audience, until the Earth King himself arrives. Sokka is captured and dragged away by Dai Li guards as the Dai Li bind and gag Katara and Toph with Earthbending. Aang himself is confronted by Long Feng, who reveals he to be the Grand Secretariat of the Earth King and head of the Dai Li. Aang is then led to a room where the others are waiting.
Inside Long Feng's chamber, Sokka tries to talk about the coming solar eclipse, but is abruptly cut off by Feng. To preserve the culture and utopian life within the walls of Ba Sing Se, Feng explains, no mention of the war is permitted. It is also revealed that Feng is in charge of handling day-to-day affairs in the city, including all military matters. The King himself is no more than a figurehead, a beloved icon. When Aang threatens to talk and tell everyone about the war, Feng counters with their expulsion from the city. He then goes on to say that if Aang persists, he may never find his missing bison again After the statement from Long Feng, the group is escorted out by a woman who calls herself Joo Dee, though is not the one who they initially met.
In a side story, Aang is flying high over Ba Sing Se and lands at a small zoo looking for Appa. Glancing around, he sees a wide variety of animals, all of which are miserable in their small cages. Many of them are partially starved and hungry. Kenji, The Zookeeper, tells Aang that the zoo is no longer receiving funding from the Dai Li because it is no longer popular with the children. However in a circle of troubles, nobody comes to the zoo because it does not receive the funding and is quite filthy (one of the cages shows an animal lying near multiple piles of feces). Kenji would like nothing more than to let his animals run wild in open spaces. Aang suggests moving the animals to an open area just outside the city.
The animals prove much more difficult to control than Aang originally thought and they end up running wild over the city, terrorizing the citizenry. Hog-monkeys destroy a shop, various animals attack the citizens, and the Cabbage Merchant has his cabbages eaten by a Rabaroo. After trying to restore order, Aang pulls out his Bison whistle and blows a huge burst of air through it using Airbending. He then hops on an air-scooter as the animals run after him.
Meanwhile, Kenji frantically tries to get the guards to open the gate. They refuse until they see the oncoming stampede. Once the gates are open, Aang reaches the other side and hops on his air scooter again. Using Earthbending, he creates a wall around the animals. He continues to Earthbend paths, secluded areas, and habitat accessories. The children and their families come flocking to the new zoo, and the zookeeper thanks Aang for his help. Kenji tells Aang he should have a job with animals. However, the zoo animals weren't the only creatures that followed the sound of the whistle, as many cats, dogs, and half cat-half-dogs are also inside the animal pens. Afterwards, Kenji decides that Aang should stick to saving people.
At the temporary home in Ba Sing Se, Sokka is attempting to draw pictures of Appa, but Aang and Katara burst in with a stack of professionally-made posters they had a printer make featuring much better pictures of the lost bison than Sokka's crude drawings. The group plans on spreading the flyers all over the city, hoping someone will have some information. Aang spreads these posters by flying on his glider and dropping them throughout the city.
Later, Aang returns home, impatient to see if the flyers have had any success. He sits down on the floor, after Katara mentions it only being the first day of the flyers being passed out. There is a knock on the door after the first second that Aang has sat down for. Aang's whole face lights up and he says, "Wow, patience really does pay off!" The visitor turns out to be the original Joo Dee, holding one of the posters. When confronted about her absence, she explains that she took a short vacation to Lake Laogai. She informs the group that dropping fliers without clearance is against the rules. Aang has had quite enough of the "rules", and tells Joo Dee off, saying that he intends to find Appa, and that she should stay out of his way. Toph is elated at the opportunity to break the rules, and expresses this joy by breaking the side wall of their home with Earthbending.
Out in the city, the gang is setting up more posters when Katara runs into Jet. He tells her that he wants to help, but Katara distrusts him and attacks. Jet deflects her attacks, and tries to prove his honesty by dropping his hook swords. The others arrive, drawn by the noise, and Jet tries again to explain himself. Then Jet shows them a flyer. Toph, reading Jet's heartbeat and breathing patterns, pronounces that he's telling the truth.
On their way out, the group is sidetracked when Smellerbee and Longshot, the other freedom fighters, happen to cross their path. Katara once again confronts Jet, as he had claimed to have left the gang behind. Jet insists that he's been living alone in the city, but Smellerbee claims that he was dragged away by the Dai Li. Toph realizes they are both telling the truth, even though their stories don't match. Sokka quickly figures that Jet has been brainwashed by the Dai Li.
The group makes their way to Lake Laogai the next day, and Toph quickly finds and uncovers the underwater entrance. The gang find themselves confronted by Long Feng and several Dai Li agents. A battle quickly breaks out. Toph shows the true mastery of Earthbending when she incredibly takes down several Dai Li agents. Long Feng escapes, with Aang and Jet in hot pursuit. Long Feng tries to make one last bargain with Aang, to leave the city immediately in exchange for their freedom and Appa, but he and Jet refuse. Long Feng then tells Jet the same sentence he told Joo Dee earlier, and, like the hostess, his eyes go blank, and Jet turns on Aang.
Aang is trying to get Jet to snap out of his trance, while avoiding his attacks. He finally gets through to him by reminding him of his past as a Freedom Fighter. The memories of his old comrades awakens Jet, and he hurls one of his hook swords at Long Feng, who dodges and retaliates with Earthbending. After dealing a grievous blow to Jet, Long Feng escapes as the others enter the chamber. Katara tries to heal Jet, and realizes just how badly he was injured. Longshot, speaking for the first time in the series, tells Aang and his group that they should go and find Appa, and leave Jet to Smellerbee and himself. Jet tries to assure Katara that he'll be fine, but as they leave, Toph sorrowfully says that Jet was lying. Jet is confirmed to have died under Lake Laogai by the creators of Avatar at Comic Con 2007. As the four exit the room, Smellerbee tends to Jet while Longshot points his bow at the doorway in case Dai Li agents enter the room.
They finally reach Appa's cell, only to find the chains broken, and Appa gone. Thinking that Long Feng had taken him, they rush back to the surface, only to find themselves surrounded by the Dai Li. Momo suddenly takes off into the sky, only to have Appa come down and break through the Dai Li trap. Long Feng tries to attack Appa, only to have his foot caught in Appa's mouth, with the bison then throwing him into the lake, and Long Feng's body skips 3 times on the water before sinking, followed by Appa spitting out one of his shoes. Aang and the others joyfully reunite with the Flying Bison. As Team Avatar fly away, Katara looks back at the lake, deeply saddened by Jet. The group hugs.
The Earth King
Less than an hour later, Aang and his friends are on a small island recovering, and discussing what they should do. Katara and Toph both want to leave Ba Sing Se, as they have found Appa and thus have no reason to remain there. On the other hand, Sokka wants to stay to inform the Earth King of all that is taking place within Ba Sing Se, as well as the approaching solar eclipse, as this was their entire reason for heading towards Ba Sing Se in the first place. Aang agrees with him. Ultimately, the others agree to do so, and all four ride Appa back to Ba Sing Se's upper ring, and manage to break into the palace, tearing their way through the Royal Guards despite a strong defense.
At the palace, Aang and his friends finally reach the Earth King's throne room, where they are encountered by Long Feng and many Dai Li, who stand before the Earth King as a last defense. They attempt to inform the King about the war, of which he knows nothing, and Long Feng's conspiracy, but have difficulty due to their position as well as his trust in his advisor. Long Feng attempts to arrest them, until the Earth King realizes that Aang is the Avatar; he then decides it best to at least hear out Aang and his friends after seeing his pet bear, Bosco, acting friendly towards the child.
Aang goes on to explain the various events going on that the Earth King is unaware of: a war outside Ba Sing Se's walls, Long Feng and the Dai Li's conspiracy, the imprisonment of Appa, and the brainwashing of Jet and countless other individuals. Long Feng denies all the charges brought against him, even claiming that he has never even encountered a Sky Bison. As the Earth King ponders over the apparently unlikely allegations, Long Feng whispers in his ear that Aang and his friends are part of an "anarchist cell" attempting to overthrow him. The Dai Li bind the group with Earthbending, and The Earth King orders the group to be detained, but Sokka has an epiphany, and with Aang's Airbending, exposes a bite mark that Long Feng received from Appa in their encounter at Lake Laogai. Long Feng claims it's a birth mark, but Aang then produces Appa to compare the mark to the bison's teeth. The Earth King is unconvinced of the larger accusations of conspiracy in the city, but expresses a willingness to investigate more closely into the matter. Long Feng frowns sourly at all this, and shuffles off quietly with his Dai Li.
The Earth King arrives at the outer wall, and is shocked to see the remains of the Fire Nation's drill leading right up to and through Ba Sing Se's outer wall. Long Feng makes a hurried attempt to pass the drill off as part of a construction project, but the Earth King is clearly unconvinced, and orders the Dai Li to arrest Long Feng. The two Dai Li agents accompanying Long Feng share a conspiratorial glance, and then bind Long Feng's arms with metal manacles. When they return to the palace, he also agrees, after some persuasion to support Sokka's plan to invade the Fire Nation on the day of the solar eclipse (dubbed by Sokka The Day of Black Sun), when the Fire Nation will be helpless.
The Earth King's top generals, the Council of Five, raid Long Feng's office and discover files about every person in Ba Sing Se, including Aang and his friends. Included is the note from Guru Pathik that was attached to Appa's horn prior to his capture, informing Aang that he can teach him how to control the Avatar State; a letter from Toph's mother, saying she is in the city and wants to meet her daughter; and an intelligence report giving the location of Water Tribe warriors led by Hakoda, Sokka and Katara's father.
Aang and Sokka make their way over the plains surrounding Ba Sing Se on Appa, convinced that things are finally going positively for them. However, back in the city, the circumstances take a suddenly negative turn. The Kyoshi Warriors arrive before the Earth King, who formally welcomes them. Unknown to the king, however, they are actually Azula, Mai, and Ty Lee, disguised in Kyoshi garments and face paint.
Training with Pathik
Aang and Sokka land at the mouth of Chameleon Bay, where they were told that Sokka’s father Hakoda and the rest of the Southern Water Tribe Warriors are. Sokka is very nervous, but Aang tries to calm him down, and succeeds somewhat. Sokka questions Aang on his feelings towards him meeting Guru Pathik to master the Avatar State. Aang smiles, and replies that he, unlike Sokka, is not nervous in the least. He then takes off on Appa, shouting back to Sokka that they will reunite in a week.
Aang arrives at the Eastern Air Temple, and finds Guru Pathik meditating atop the same pillar he was on before Appa's departure. Guru Pathik introduces himself as a spiritual brother to the Air Monks, and a good close friend of Monk Gyatso. Aang ask Pathik how he plans on teaching him how to gain control of the Avatar State, to which Guru replies that he must first bring balance to himself before he can bring balance to the world. The Guru first asks Aang to simply drink a liquid, which Aang does before spitting it out, as it is a strange combination of onion and banana juice. At the Eastern Air Temple, Guru Pathik is beginning Aang’s instruction of the chakras. Chakras are nexuses of metaphysical and/or biophysical energy residing in the human body. In order to master the Avatar State, Pathik says that he must first open the seven chakras of the body. After determining that Aang has absolutely no knowledge of the nature of chakras, Pathik procides a visual representation. Using a pond clogged with algae he successfully explains to Aang the concept of chakras, stating that by removing the clogs between pools, the water is allowed to flow, just as energy is allowed to flow through the body when the seven chakras are open. There are seven chakras within the body, each with a purpose and each with a different blockage: An intense sensation results from the opening of them all. Pathik warns that the process of opening the chakras cannot be halted once it has begun- it must be completed in order to succeed. Aang accepts this risk and they begin the process.
The first chakra is the Earth Chakra, located at the base of the spine. It deals with Survival, and is blocked by Fear. Aang goes into meditation, and sees himself surrounded by fire, sitting before a man who appears to be the Fire Lord. Although surrounded by his visions, Aang is able to clearly hear Pathik's advice on how to address the emotion. After some reassurance, Aang is able to clear his thoughts, and the images disappear. Aang drops out of his meditative trance and Pathik congratulates him, before they move on.
The second chakra is the Water Chakra, which deals with Pleasure, and is blocked by Guilt. When asked what he blames himself for, Aang replies that he regrets running away from the Southern Air Temple upon receiving the pressure accompanying his position as Avatar. Also, he regrets harming others while in the Avatar State, as at General Fong's base. Pathik replies that Aang must accept what has happened, and not allow them to influence his judgment. In order to benefit the world, Aang must forgive his own actions, which he is able to accomplish.
Aang and Pathik prepare to open the third chakra, the Fire Chakra, which is located in the stomach. Aang somewhat jokingly remarks upon learning this that he is hungry, and Pathik treats it in good humor before quickly moving on. He explains that the Fire Chakra deals with Willpower, while it is blocked by Shame. Aang has a vision of when he first attempted Firebending, and severely burned Katara’s hands. He repeats aloud the promise he made afterwards: that he will never Firebend again. Pathik dismisses this, saying that in order to obtain Balance, Aang must accept all aspects of his life. As the Avatar, Aang must Firebend. Aang breathes in and out once, releasing the chakra.
Aang and Pathik have now moved on to open the fourth chakra, the Air Chakra. Located in the heart, this chakra deals with Love, and is blocked by Grief. Laying his grief before him, Aang meditates, and sees all of the Air Monks he knew, with Gyatso at the front, all of whom died because he abandoned them. They fade away into dust. Love, according to Pathik, is a form of energy, and flows around everything, and that the monks' love for Aang is still all around them, and manifests itself inside of new love- for example, as Aang sees, the love Aang feels for Katara. Aang releases the chakra, teary-eyed, and asks for more juice before they continue.
The fifth Chakra is the Sound Chakra, and is located in the throat. It deals with Truth, and is blocked by the Lies people tell themselves. Pathik says that all must accept who they are, and that Aang must accept he is the Avatar, even though he never wanted to be. Aang sighs, and quickly and calmly accomplishes this, and he opens the Chakra.
Aang and Pathik move quickly to the next Chakra. Located in the center of the forehead, the sixth chakra is the Light Chakra, which is responsible for Insight, and is blocked by Illusions. The greatest Illusion, Pathik explains, is that of Separation: things that appear separate but are, in truth, one and the same. Aang mentions the Four Nations, and Pathik agrees, stating that the people of the world are in reality one people, despite their decision to live as separate nations. Even the Separation of the Four Elements is an illusion, Pathik explains. He mentions metal, which is simply Earth which has been purified and refined. As Pathik continues to speak, Toph continues bashing her hands into the metal walls of her cell when she was captured in a trap disguised by a visit from her mother. Her blows send out vibrations, allowing her to sense the fragments of Earth contained within the metal. Toph reaches out for the fragments, and continues stubbornly beating against the cell, eventually leaving a good-sized dent in the center. She cheers, and congratulates herself for her discovery, before continuing her assault on the cell's walls.
Aang and Pathik arrive at the seventh and final Chakra. Pathik congratulates Aang and states that with the final Chakra's opening, he will be able to willfully enter and exit the Avatar State, as well as control his actions within it. The Thought Chakra, located at the crown of the head, deals with Cosmic Energy, and is blocked by Earthly Attachment. Aang is asked to meditate on what he is attached to, and images of Katara flood his mind. Now that Aang has focused on that which he is attached to, Pathik instructs Aang to let the attachments go. Aang suddenly becomes angry, finding the idea of letting go of Katara ludicrous, as he loves her. He also questions why he should not allow himself to feel this love, when Pathik stated previously that it was beneficial to him. Pathik narrows his eyes, but remains calm, and states that if Aang ever wants the pure Cosmic Energy to enter him, he must let go of all earthly attachments, including Katara.
The argument continues back at the Eastern Air Temple, with Pathik telling Aang he must open all of the chakras to master the Avatar State. Aang decides to at the least try to do so, and he begins to let go. He visualizes an image of Katara disappears into space, and himself being taken high above the planet to walk along a purple stream of cosmic energy. The stream is radiating from a gigantic image of himself in the Avatar State, which surrounds him in a sphere of energy radiating from its palms. However, Aang is suddenly shocked when an image of Katara, struggling in chains and screaming for help, appears behind him. He abandons the Avatar State, and begins running towards the image. The stream of cosmic energy dissipates, and Aang plummets to the Earth. Jolting awake from his meditation, Aang desperately says that Katara is in trouble, and he must go back to Ba Sing Se to help her. Pathik stops him, telling him that by choosing Attachment, the last chakra has become blocked- if he leaves now, he will not be able to go into the Avatar State at all. Aang hesitates, but then continues on without looking back or responding.
Crossroads of Destiny
Sokka and Aang both hurry back to Ba Sing Se on Appa. As they fly along, they spot Toph, who is trying to get back to the Palace as quickly as she can. They pick her up and fly to Ba Sing Se, flying quickly to get there and to see if Katara is all right. When asked if he had mastered the Avatar State, Aang lies to the others, saying that he has.
When they arrive at the Palace, the Earth King reassures them that Katara is fine, but Aang and his friends check their apartment just to be sure. As they search the apartment, Toph senses someone at the door, but she soon knows who it is after a knock. She tells Aang and Sokka that it is an old friend of hers. It happens to be Iroh. Iroh tells them that Azula has captured Zuko and that he needs their help. Sokka grows defensive but changes his mind after a short discussion. Iroh then motions to a captured Dai Li agent who is trapped by Toph in a pinch of rocks. After Sokka’s questioning, Team Avatar learns of a coup that was supposed to start that day, and that Katara is being held captive in a secret underground cave that is part of Old Ba Sing Se.
Outside the Palace, the gang discovers that there is indeed a huge underground city, and decides that Toph and Sokka should go to warn the Earth King about the coup, and Iroh and Aang are sent to rescue Katara and Zuko. Traveling down a tunnel to this prison, Aang mentions that Toph says Iroh gives great advice and tea. He also tells him of the events of his meeting with Guru Pathik. When questioning his choice, and saying how he doubts his abilities without the Avatar State, Iroh suggests that Aang was very wise to choose happiness and love over power and perfection, which are both overrated in his opinion.
Down below in their prison, Katara apologizes to Zuko for how she yelled at him, and tells him that for a long time, whenever she saw the face of the enemy, she saw Zuko’s face. He turns away, touching his scar, assuming she was referencing his scar; a mark he feels that was once symbol to his banishment, and to his “destiny” of chasing the Avatar forever. However, he has gained Katara's trust to the point where she offers to heal his scar using the water from the Spirit Oasis. However, before she can do anything, Aang and Iroh show up, both of them embracing Katara and Zuko, respectively.
Zuko and Aang exchange glares, and Zuko grows angry that Iroh was with the Avatar, and Iroh sends Katara and Aang off to help Sokka and Toph. Iroh then explains to Zuko that he is a different and changed man, stronger and wiser than ever before. He tells Zuko that he is time for him to choose good. However, a mass of crystals entraps Iroh, and Azula emerges. She says that she expected this sort of treachery from Iroh, but not from her brother. She begins to feed him tales of how this is the most glorious day in Fire Nation history, and that if he joins her, Zuko will gain back his father’s love and honor. Iroh begs Zuko to not listen to Azula, telling him that the kind of redemption Azula is offering is not the redemption for him, but Azula continues to plot, telling Zuko how she has planned everything, and that they will only win if he joins her. Iroh begs even more, for Zuko to look deep inside his heart and see what he truly wants. Azula sends the Dai Li away, and tells Zuko that he can chose whatever he wants, and she walks away; leaving him to ponder the two sides of the coin.
Aang and Katara rush to save Toph and Sokka, however, Azula sends a bolt of fire at them. A battle ensues between Aang, Katara, and Azula, and just as Aang and Katara have her cornered Zuko shows up. After a brief moment of dramatic tension, Zuko begins fighting on Azula's side, to everyone’s astonishment. In the midst of the battle, the two pairs switch off, with Zuko now fighting Katara, both using element whips on opposite sides of a river. Katara expresses her angry disappointment in Zuko, how she thought he had changed. He replies inscrutably, "I have changed". Aang and Azula charge at one another, Azula sends a blast of fire, sending Aang soaring into the air.
Underground, the fight continues on, with Katara taking on both Zuko and Azula, before Aang manages to stand back up from being thrown earlier. He slams into the ground, creating a tidal wave of Earth barreling towards Azula and Zuko, but he is stopped by the Dai Li. Soon they are joined by dozens of Dai Li agents, and Katara assumes the Octopus stance. Horribly outmatched, Aang realizes there is no other choice and does the only thing he can think of---creating a quick crystal shelter with Earthbending, he meditates, and decides to try to release his attachment to Katara in order to enter the Avatar State. He then rises into the air, but before he can let go of Katara and gain control of the Avatar State, Azula shoots him down with a lightning bolt to the back. At that moment, the Avatar Spirit falls from the plane of existence. As Aang falls back to the ground, Katara creates a huge wave by Waterbending, and manages to scatter the Dai Li, Zuko, and Azula; and catch him before he hits the ground. Holding him in tears, she is defenseless, but Iroh suddenly appears. He tells Katara to escape, and that he will hold off Azula and the others as long as he can. Once they escape, Iroh surrenders himself to the Dai Li and glances at Zuko, quickly turning his head in shame.
Iroh is crestfallen of Zuko's decision. The entire group manages to escape and while flying away on Appa, Katara uses her Spirit Oasis water to heal Aang, who initially appeared dead. With a quick flash of light, nothing occurs, and Katara begins to cry and holds Aang close. Then Aang’s tattoos glow shortly and he opens his eyes and smiles at her. Overwhelmed and relieved that he is okay, Katara embraces him closer.
Aang survives the lightning. Meanwhile, in the palace Zuko frets over betraying Iroh. However, Azula reassures him by telling him that it was actually Uncle that betrayed them, not the other way around. Zuko then asks Azula about returning to the Fire Nation, raising his doubts about being accepted and having his honor restored since he does not have the Avatar. Azula again reassures him by saying that he has restored his own honor, though Zuko still seems unsure. Azula is firmly in control of the city, and as the Earth King, Bosco, Momo, Toph, Sokka, Katara, and Aang fly atop Appa's back over the Outer Wall and out of the city, the Earth King looks back and sadly proclaims, "The Earth Kingdom... has fallen".
Escape from the Spirit World
In his time of unconsciousness, Aang mentally entered the spirit world, his soul trapped. He encounters Princess Yue, the Moon Spirit, who informs him that if he does not reconnect with his past four lives, the Avatar Cycle will end.
After collecting fire flies for his torch, Fang, Roku's faithful animal guide, appears, offering to guide Aang to Avatar Roku, though this means he must fulfill a challenge. After passing it, Koh, the face stealer, asks him a question, and after answering it, he passes on and meets Roku. Aang explains his extreme shame at failing to master the Avatar State. However, Avatar Roku appeases him, explaining that he too had problems with the Avatar State. He tried to master it by learning from Fire Sage Kaja, grandfather of Fire Sage Shyu, but Roku just couldn't. He was impatient and sought other ways to master the Avatar State. He devised a plan to use the energy from the sun of the winter solstice to aid him. On the winter solstice, he aligned his eyes with a beam of light coming from the winter solstice sun. The method worked, but he was stuck in the Avatar State. He destroyed the top half of the Avatar Temple on Crescent Island. Fortunately, Kaja was wise and knew how to break Roku out of the Avatar State. Roku used this story to explain to Aang that mastering the Avatar State was very difficult, and he should not feel so ashamed. He then tells Aang to meet with Avatar Kyoshi who will be found at the lair of Hei Bai.
Journeying deeper into the Spirit World, Aang found Hei Bai. Hei Bai brought him to Kyoshi, who apologized for his being wrongfully accused of murder in Chin village. Kyoshi went on to explain what she did in the years after she defeated Chin the Conqueror. One of her most difficult challenges was dealing with a peasant uprising in Ba Sing Se. The peasants were unhappy with the Earth King, and stormed the upper ring of the city, destroying many historical artifacts. She was summoned by the Earth King to quash the rebellion, but Kyoshi refused to do so. After defeating the guards sent to arrest her, she proposed a deal to the King: he would listen to the peasants and she would take steps to protect Ba Sing Se's culture from further disruption. The Earth King agreed.
Kyoshi, in order to fulfill her part of the deal, trained an elite force of earthbenders, meant to protect Ba Sing Se's cultural heritage. They eventually became known as the Dai Li. Aang was shocked to learn that an Avatar had created a group as corrupt and evil as the Dai Li. Kyoshi had no idea how corrupt they would become, and obviously regrets creating them. She tells Aang that their actions always have an effect, but that effect might not happen until many years later. She then ushered Aang and Hei Bai away, saying they needed to find Avatar Kuruk.
Aang and Hei Bai journeyed deeper into the Spirit World, eventually reaching Koh's realm. At that moment, a watertribe warrior surprised Aang. The warrior was revealed to be Avatar Kuruk. Kuruk asked Aang if he had seen a woman with long, brown hair. Aang says no, and asks who she is. Kuruk says she is his wife. Kuruk explains that in his life, he didn't take being the Avatar seriously. He often challenged random people to test their bending skills against him, and showed off his own skills for women. But his life changed forever at a New Moon Celebration, when the two water tribes met. He saw Ummi, a southern watertribe member. The two fell in love, and Kuruk asked her to marry him soon after. She accepted.
Kuruk explained that on their wedding night, at the Spirit Oasis, Ummi was approaching the altar when she was pulled into the water by un unknown force. Kuruk tried to rescue her, but was unsuccessful. He later found out that Koh had taken her to punish him for his past mistakes. Every year on the anniversary of their wedding, Kuruk attempted to kill Koh and rescue Ummi, but failed each time. Aang tells him that he knows how that feels, and suddenly remembers something: Koh had shown him Ummi's face during their first encounter. Armed with this information, Kuruk vows to never stop hunting Koh until he and Ummi are reunited. Kuruk left, telling Aang that Avatar Yangchen is waiting for him.
Aang journeyed with Hei Bai untill they reached the top of a mountain. Aang called out for Avatar Yangchen and she appeared. After greeting each other Aang told her what an amazing experience it had been to meet his past lives and Yangchen then asked him what he learned from them. Aang replyed that he learned that no Avatar was perfect and they all struggled and made mistakes like him. Yangchen then commended him on his wisdom. But, Aang then told her that it made him wonder why the Avatar was a human in every life and would it not be better if the Avatar was an all powerful spirit that never died. Yangchen disagreed and stated that the Avatar must be compassionate towards all people and the only way to do that would be to live with them. The Avatar must experience sadness, anger, joy and happiness. By feeling all these emotions the Avatar would be able to better understand how precious a human life is and thus the Avatar will do anything to protect it. She further stated that if the Avatar was an all powerful spirit living on top of some mountain, it wouldn't have much in common with an ordinary person. This is why the Avatar continues to take human rebirth and with each life learns what it means to be human. The spiritual silhoutes of Kuruk, Kyoshi and Roku can be seen behind Yangchen at this point. Aang asked them all if now that he has reconnected with them all that the Avatar Spirit would be okay. The others faded and Yangchen replyed that yes but Aang's physical body is still injured and Aang needs time to heal. She also told him that his ability to enter the Avatar State had been disrupted. He can no longer rely on his past lives and must now rely on his friends. She also told him that when he awakes, he won't remember this journey to the Spirit World and it would be like a forgotten dream. She too then disappears bidding him farewell.
Book 3: Fire
After several weeks spent unconscious, Aang finally comes to aboard a captured Fire Nation ship. He is now sporting a full head of hair, a mass of bandages, and a vicious scar on his back. Katara works on healing his body in that area, and during the session, Aang has a painful flash of memory back to the time he had fallen--he realizes that he wasn't just injured, but that it was much worse, his spirit had separated from his body and that if it wasn't for Katara he might not have returned. Though Katara insists that it was the Spirit Water that saved him, Aang tells her that it was not the water--it was her.
The next day, Aang learns a horrible fact--the entire world believes him dead. While Sokka is delighted by the idea, saying that it will give the group an advantage, Aang finds himself in a state of frustration and dismay. He blames himself for the defeat at Ba Sing Se, saying that he had been there and been unable to stop it, and now that the world thinks him dead, there is no hope.
After a scuffle with a Fire Nation vessel that discovers them (a battle in which he was forced to remain hidden), Aang slips away in the night with only his glider in order to face his destiny alone, intending to keep anyone else from paying for his mistakes. He makes it past the naval blockade but finds himself in a nasty squall. Believing he has failed again and will now die because of his foolishness, Aang finds himself unable to work up the will to continue.
During Aang's darkest hour, though, Avatar Roku appears and tells Aang not to blame himself--Roku claims that the fault is his own. He also tells Aang, though, that he believes that the boy is destined to redeem him; the spirit of Yue appears and removes the last of Aang's doubt, encouraging him to save the world as he has before. She then helps Aang to safety, sending a wave that carries Aang to Crescent Moon Island where Roku's temple once stood.
His friends find him in the morning, and they are all reunited once more. Aang apologizes for his rash actions, and accepts the fact that he will need their help and that they know what to do. In a symbolic link to this, Aang's glider washes ashore, broken, tattered and beyond repair; he accepts this, though, and plants it firmly in the volcanic rock for cremation, burning away the evidence of his existence and a piece of his old life.
Into the Fire Nation
After stealing some clothes from an isolated household, Aang is grabbed from the streets by truant officers and thrust in a Fire Nation school. While there, however, he has fun and decides to remain enlisted so that he and the others could learn more about the local customs by the history teacher Ms. Kwan. He learns that history has been warped (e.g. Sozin attacked an Air Nomads army) but eventually becomes popular among the students--especially a girl named On Ji. After getting in trouble in several classes and getting in a "fight" with On Ji's overprotective boyfriend Hide (said fight featuring Aang easily dodging every wild punch the other boy attempted to deliver), he is caught by The Headmaster, earning a meeting with his "parents" (Sokka and Katara). Although he agrees with Sokka's firm statement that there is to be no more school for him, Aang tries to grant the students a little more freedom--by holding a dance party. He manages to help them overcome their fear and reluctance by showing them some ancient dance movements, and wins their admiration and loyalty.
He also manages to gain the admiration of Katara, who shyly accepts an offer to dance with him. The two amaze the crowd with a flawless series of moves, until the headmaster and some police come to put a stop to this intolerable activity. When they learn that their superiors are searching for Aang as "the boy with the headband", the entire student body helps to cover Aang's escape by covering their own foreheads with their belts. As Aang escapes he bows to his new friend Shoji, and then Earthbends the exit closed, shocking Shoji.
The group floats downstream, in the middle of a river that seems to be mostly brown sludge. They decide to stop in the village of Jang Hui, a fishing village in the middle of the river. Many villagers are sick, and there is a lack of food because of the polluted water. Katara wishes to help these people, but Sokka says their overall mission is too important to stop to help everybody they come across. In the morning, Appa is found lying on his side, and his tongue is purple. Katara suggests that the village might have some herbs that can heal him. When they get to the village, everybody happens to be in much better spirits. According to Xu, a legendary local river spirit known as the Painted Lady came and gave them some more food. But there is no medicine in the village, as the factory takes it all. Katara suggests letting Appa rest for another day.
The next day, Appa is still sick, so they return to the village. The village is in even higher spirits, and have erected a large statue of the Painted Lady in thanks for healing their sick. Xu/Dock suggests that maybe the Painted Lady could help Appa out. The next night, Momo wakes up, rousing Aang in turn. Seeing the Painted Lady, Aang tries to ask for her help, but she runs away. Aang chases her all the way to the village, where he finally finds out that Katara has been acting as the Painted Lady. Katara sadly confesses and apologizes for holding them there to help the village, but Aang naturally likes the idea. Together, the two infiltrate the factory and wreck it, stopping the flow of pollution. As they prepare to leave, they see a squad of Fire Nation troops heading towards the town on speeders, and realize that they must believe the villagers had sabotaged the factory, Katara is determined to stop them. The soldiers start attacking the village, but a gust of wind blows their flames out when they start destroying everything. With help from Appa, Toph, and Sokka providing spooky sound effects, Aang and Katara stage an encounter with the Painted Lady to defeat the troops and drive them away. They stay an extra week to help the village clean the river and rebuild a way of life for the villagers.
While Aang was sleeping Roku came to him and told him to come to his home island so that he can learn how the war started. After traveling to the island aboard Appa, he sits on a ledge overlooking the ocean and meditates. After entering the Spirit World, Roku and Fang take Aang on a trip through Roku's past. We learn that Roku and Fire Lord Sozin were best friends. Aang is also surprised and delighted to find out that one of Roku's friends was none other than Monk Gyatso. Roku comments that Aang's relationship with Gyatso years later proves that some friendships are able to transcend lifetimes. Awakening from his vision with Roku, Aang tells his friends that the message of the story was that, as Roku and Sozin were both Fire Nation natives , the point of the story was that any person is capable of great good or evil, and the group takes comfort at Roku's words that friendships can transcend lifetimes.
Later, Aang worries when he realizes the invasion is only four days away. He begins having nightmares about facing the Fire Lord (having lost his pants and didn't study for a math test). In an effort to stop this, he decides to stay awake until the invasion. This backfires when he starts having daydreams and hallucinations (for example, he hears Momo and Appa speak like humans and, after a dispute, have a samurai battle between them with rocks and sheep dancing around Aang). In one he kisses Katara and in another he sees Fire Lord Ozai telling him he missed the invasion. His friends try to relieve his stress though yoga at a volcanic core with Katara; therapy with Sokka and his beard; and heavy massage from Toph who then suggests acupuncture. After his friends make a comfortable bed, he is able to fall asleep the night before the invasion. ("Nightmares and Daydreams")
The Invasion and Eclipse
Aang wakes up on the morning of the invasion happy and rested. When the invasion boats start to arrive, Aang and Toph prepare by making docks for them to stop by. Aang introduces his friends as each one comes off the boat. When the Mechanist and Teo come off they have a surprise for Aang, a new glider. This new glider is reptilian in the look of the "wings". As Aang prepares to leave, he gathers scraps and makes a new outfit that expresses his Air Nomad culture. Along with a new outfit, Aang shaves off the hair finally showing off his arrow once more. Sokka proceeds to ask Aang how he knows they are going to win, Aang says "...because I already failed the world once in Ba Sing Se, I won't let myself fail again".
The invasion force, ready to go, boards the boats. At the Gates of Azulon, the boats release submarines containing the warriors. When it comes time to resurface for air, the group gathers on top. They say their good-lucks and have a group hug. As Aang gets ready to fly to the Fire Nation Capital, he confronts Katara. Katara tells him how proud she is and that he isn't that same goofy kid she found in the iceberg anymore, Aang moves in and kisses her. Katara blushes but does not resist. With a new courage, Aang departs.
As Aang enters the city, he can’t help but notice that no one is around. When he barges into the palace, no one is there to see him. He immediately goes to the throne room to find it deserted. Aang falls to his knees and yells "Fire Lord Ozai, where are you?!"
Aang returns to the battle and tells Sokka, Katara, and Toph what had happened. Sokka thinks that Ozai wouldn't want to leave his city, but still stay safe. Sokka suspected an underground bunker. Toph agrees to help them find it. They find it with ease and enter it using Earthbending. After bumping into War Minister Qin, they are pointed into the wrong direction. The three enter a room where they find Princess Azula sitting on a throne. Azula is powerless due to the eclipse. Azula goes ahead and says she knew about the invasion for quite some time. Aang and the others demand to know where Fire Lord Ozai is by reminding her that she cannot Firebend. Azula decides to tell them about her souvenirs from Ba Sing Se, two Dai Li agents. A battle soon takes place with Aang trying to get to Azula while being interrupted by Dai Li. Eventually the Dai Li are defeated and Azula is being chased. Sokka then realizes that this is a trap. Azula wasn't trying to defeat the Avatar, just distract him and take up his time. The plan worked, Aang didn't even see the Fire Lord by the time the eclipse was up.
The three return to Katara and the others just in time to see approaching Fire Balloons. Aang and Katara go into the sky (via glider and Appa) and destroy the balloons. The only problem were the Airships. The Airships proceeded down to the beach where they bombed all the submarines, leaving the invasion force stranded. Hakoda decides that the older warriors should surrender while the younger ones escape on Appa. Aang apologizes to the invasion force promising to make it up to them. Aang, Katara, Sokka, Toph, The Duke, Teo, and Haru board Appa and head to the Western Air Temple for safe refuge.
Refuge and a New Ally
After the failed invasion on the Day of Black Sun, Aang and the group head towards the Western Air Temple. However, because of the heavy load with the addition of Haru, Teo, and the Duke to the group, Appa can't fly the whole way and the gang has to walk the rest of the way there. As they felt embarrassed for losing and walking the rest of the way, Toph senses the Western Air Temple. Everyone else can't see it, but Aang reassures that it is the right spot. The temple was actually on the cliffside below them, unique compared to the other Air Temples. Zuko descends from a rope onto one of the buildings of the temple remembering when he was first there with his uncle, General Iroh. He hears Appa approach and flees.
When the gang lands on one of the buildings, Haru, Teo, and the Duke explore while Aang, Katara, Toph, and Sokka make plans. Sokka suggests that they should go back to the "old plan", Aang has to master all four elements and confront Fire Lord Ozai. Aang states that there is a problem in that it is unlikely for them to find a Firebending teacher for him. Katara suggests looking for Jeong Jeong, but Aang also isn't sure about that. Not wanting to discuss their current predicament, Aang flies around the temple on his glider.
Eventually, Sokka, Katara, and Toph catch up with Aang on Appa and land on another building of the temple. As Aang suggests showing them another part of the temple, Toph states that "it'll have to wait" after sensing Zuko across from them. Zuko then humbly explains that he has changed and wants to teach Aang Firebending. The group mistrusts him because of their past history with the former crown prince, and became angry when Zuko clumsily admitted sending Combustion Man after them. Zuko told Aang that "you thought we could have been friends" echoing his words in The Blue Spirit, but Aang eventually rejected him. Despite Zuko's offering himself as a prisoner, Katara and Sokka insisted that he should immediately leave.
Toph gets upset later on that the others are letting their feelings block their proper judgment. She states that Zuko was sincere when he spoke and that he was probably the only Firebender willing to teach Aang Firebending. She seems to have disappeared until the next morning when she pops out of a hole in the wall with her feet burned. She tells the group that she tried to visit Zuko, but he accidentally burned her. Sokka then makes up a plan to make Zuko their prisoner. As the group lays Toph's feet in a pool of water, Combustion Man can be seen from a high angle ready to strike. When he breathes in, ready to strike, Aang senses him as a pillar on the temple is fired on. Aang whips up a tornado at Combustion Man, but he dodges it and fires again. As the gang takes cover, Zuko comes telling them to stop. Aang and the rest notice this and are surprised. Combustion Man fires at Zuko, but he is able to grab onto a vine hanging down from the ledge. Eventually Combustion Man blows himself up after being hit on the head with Sokka's boomerang. After the group retaliates, Aang thanks Zuko for what he has done. Zuko then restates what he said the day before, and also apologizes to Toph about burning her feet stating that fire is uncontrollable at times, and that he needs to be more careful. After remembering what he did to Katara, Aang believes that Zuko is meant to be his teacher.
Meeting the Firebending Masters
As Aang and Zuko begin their Firebending training, Zuko realizes that he can't make strong fire blasts anymore; Aang is also still afraid to Firebend because of what he did to Katara. Aang thinks the reason is that in the past, Zuko was driven by anger, and now that he isn't, he couldn't Firebend as well. After a suggestion by Toph to go to the original source of Firebending, Zuko states that the original Firebenders, the dragons were extinct. However, there were ruins of an ancient civilization, the Sun Warriors, who first learned from the dragons. He believed that they could find something there.
Aang and Zuko head to the ruins the next day. Once there, they come across a booby trap, but after passing it, head towards a tall pyramid. Along the way, Zuko tells Aang that the dragons were extinct because of his great-grandfather, Fire Lord Sozin. If someone was to conquer a dragon, Their Firebending skills were to be of legend and be given the title of "Dragon". He then says that his uncle was the person who slayed the last dragon.
When they reach the top of the pyramid, they find a door that is only opened on the solstice, like the ones in the Fire Sages' temples. Zuko tries to deceive the door by reflecting the sunlight into the gem placed on top of the door, and this causes it to open. Aang compliments him for that. Inside, Zuko snoops around while Aang gazes at the statues depicting a move known as "The Dancing Dragon". When he imitates the first move, he triggers something. He then asks Zuko to perform the technique with him. When they complete the move, a relic rises up from the ground. Zuko picks it up, despite Aang's warnings about not picking it up. A glue-like substance then shoots up from the pedestal the relic was on, shooting Zuko up to bars at an opening in the ceiling. Aang also gets stuck up there as the substance fills the room. They stay there until night when a chief of some sort appears. When the two are back on the floor and having the substance removed, it appears that the Sun Warrior civilization is still alive. Aang and Zuko state they want to learn the true meaning of Firebending, and the chief says that they must learn from the masters.
The next day, the chief gives them a piece of the Original Flame, the first flame given to man by the dragons. At first, Aang is reluctant to take the fire, but the chief says that fire is not only destruction, but life. The two are told to travel up a mountain to meet the masters where they will present their flames and be judged. If they are deemed worthy, they will be taught; if not, they will be destroyed on the spot. As the two journey up the mountain, Aang feels reluctant about going through with this, but Zuko reassures him.
When they reach the top, the chief and other Sun Warriors are already there. The chief takes pieces of Aang's and Zuko's flames and distributes it to warriors. They then begin a ceremony as Aang and Zuko head up some stairs to meet the masters, who are in caves. They present their flames, but Aang's goes out. The Sun Warriors begin calling the masters. When Aang tries to get some of Zuko's flame, two dragons, a red one and a blue one, come out of the caves and fly in circles around the two. Aang thinks that they should perform the Dancing Dragon with the dragons. They perform in-sync and when Aang and Zuko finish the dragons begin judging them. The dragons then shoot fire at the two which encircles them in many different colors. The dragons then return to their caves. When they reach the bottom, Zuko realizes that he lost power because his main drive in the past was to capture Aang, but now he realizes that he must now help the Avatar defeat his father, Fire Lord Ozai; Aang also realizes that Firebending is a beautiful art and that fire is really life and energy. Zuko throws two powerful fire blasts into the air as Aang throws his first fire blast into the air. The chief then states that Iroh also learned the true meaning of Firebending. He then tells them not to tell anyone about them or the dragons.
When Aang and Zuko return to the Western Air Temple, they perform the Dancing Dragon to the group, who then make fun of the technique. Zuko tells them it's a sacred Firebending form that happens to be thousands of years old. Katara asks for the form's name and upon hearing it the group laughs even more.
The Southern Raiders
When Azula attacks at the Western Air Temple, the group is forced to split. While Zuko holds off the Airships and Azula, Aang and the others fly on Appa, and catch Zuko when he and his sister fall from the Airship after their attacks clash. When Katara announces that she's going to find the man who killed her mother, along with Zuko, Aang questions her motives, even saying she sounds like Jet, and saying that he does understand what she's feeling, mentioning Appa's theft by the Sandbenders and the his discovery of what happened to his people. When she decides to go any way, he supports her, but asks her not to resort to violence, and let go of her anger. When Zuko and Katara come back, he says he's proud of her, and talks with Zuko that violence is never the answer. He is then asked by Zuko what he will do when he faces Ozai.
The Ember Island Players
Aang and Zuko are training while Katara and Toph watch. Katara asks if it’s safe for them to be hiding in Ozai's beach house on Ember Island, but Zuko tells her it’s the last place he would look. Sokka and Suki, now with a Fire Nation disguise, come back from town with a flier about a play about Team Avatar put on by the Ember Island Players.
When they get to the theater Aang tries to sit next to Katara but Zuko sits down next to her first, forcing him to sit next to Zuko. The play starts with Sokka and Katara in a canoe. The Katara actress gives a long speech about hope while Sokka's cracks jokes about how hungry he is, much to the disgust of the real Sokka and Katara. They come across an iceberg with an Aang puppet inside and Katara uses her Waterbending to release him. Once the actual actor surfaces, Aang reels back in shock upon seeing that a woman is playing him, much to Toph's amusement.
The next scene of the play shows Zuko and Iroh's actors. Iroh's actor is very short and fat while Zuko's actor has a mask on with his scar, but on the wrong eye. Iroh tells Zuko to have some cake but the Zuko actor says he doesn't have time because he must regain his honor. Zuko thinks they made his character stiff and humorless which Katara thinks is a perfect rendition.
The play moves on through Book 1, Water, with Aang finding Momo, Sokka dressed as a Kyoshi Warrior with the Suki actress, King Bumi's challenge for Aang to save Katara and Sokka, the pirates attacking the gang to get back their scroll, the Blue Spirit inaccurately saving Aang from Zuko, Jet destroying a town by summoning water, Yue becoming the Moon Spirit and Aang saving the Water Tribe from Zhao.
The gang go outside for the intermission and are all disgusted at the way they've been portrayed. Toph tells them what they're seeing on the stage is the truth. They go back in for act two and it starts with them trying to find Aang an Earthbending master. The Toph actor appears and he's a muscular guy who instead of using his feet to see, releases a sonic wave by screaming. Toph is very satisfied by the way she was portrayed. The play then goes on to show Zuko and Iroh going their separate ways because Iroh thinks Zuko's hair got too long. Then they show the scene from the chase where they corner Azula who narrowly escapes by fooling Zuko into turning around to look for his honor. It then showed a scene from "The Drill" followed by a scene of Jet, apparently hypnotized by the Earth King getting crushed by a rock. Zuko is slightly shocked by this and asks Sokka if Jet died, in which Sokka replies "it was very unclear".
The next scene shows Zuko and Katara in the cave, with the Katara actress hitting on the Zuko actor, which makes their real life counterparts slightly uncomfortable. The Katara actress tells him the Avatar is like a little brother to her and that she doesn't think of him romantically and they both hug. Aang gets annoyed and storms off. The next scene in the play Zuko sides with Azula and pushes Iroh over, which deeply offends the real Zuko followed by Azula taking Aang down with lightning and claiming "The Avatar is no more!" and posing with the Mai and Ty Lee actresses. The crowd cheers and the Gang look on in disbelief.
During the next intermission Katara meets up with Aang outside who is upset about the play and how he could be in the Avatar State if Azula hadn't blocked his last chakra.
Aang then asks Katara if she has feelings for him and how he thought they would be together after the invasion. Katara tells him that she’s confused and that now is not the right time. Aang kisses her again and she gets angry and runs back inside.
Aang comes back and Sokka summarizes what Aang missed. The invasion starts with Katara telling Aang she loves him like a brother and they shake hands. Sokka's actor asks Toph if Aang and her have a "rocky relationship", and Sokka squeals with joy at the fact that he used his line. Zuko joins the group during the invasion because Ozai wasn't there. Sokka gets up to leave thinking the plays over cause it’s caught up to the present but Suki tells him the plays not over yet.
Fire Lord Ozai appears on stage summoning power from the comet. Azula comes in and tells him that Zuko and Aang are at the palace trying to stop him. Zuko fights Azula and is killed, his last words are "HONOR!" the crowd cheers as Zuko watches in horror as the group all stare at him in disbelief. Aang makes his way to the Fire Lord but the comet has come already and he's already unstoppable. Ozai fires a giant fireball at Aang killing him. Azula comes back in and Ozai gives a speech about how the world is now his as the crowd gives him a standing ovation.
The group walks back to Ozai's beach house talking about how the play was terrible but Sokka thinks the effects were decent.
Training and Anxiety
Three days before the arrival of Sozin's Comet, Aang is practicing Firebending. Zuko pushes him to be more aggressive and ferocious, but becomes frustrated with Aang when he becomes unfocused. Aang joins Sokka and the others in holding a beach party, playing around in the water and making a sand sculpture of Appa. However, Zuko attacks him in the middle of the party, and chases him off the beach, onto the house roof, and into the house, shooting fire blasts at him the entire time. Finally, Aang blasts Zuko out of the house using Airbending. He and the others gather around Zuko, demanding to know what is wrong with him, but Zuko asks them how they could be having beach parties when Sozin's Comet is only three days away. Aang reveals that he plans to defeat the Fire Lord after the comet arrives. The others explain to an incredulous Zuko that the point of fighting the Fire Lord before the comet was to win the war, but the Fire Nation won the war when they captured Ba Sing Se. However, Zuko reveals that Ozai plans to use the power of the comet to destroy the Earth Kingdom and build a new world from the ashes. The rest of the group is horrified by this plan, and Zuko urges Aang to defeat the Fire Lord to save the world.
Later on, Zuko teaches Aang one final Firebending technique: Lightning redirection. Zuko warns Aang to be careful with the technique and not make a wrong move, or else he will die. He also tells Aang he must strike Ozai first, or else he will be defeated instead. Later, Sokka plans a training session using a model for the Fire Lord with a melon for a head called "The Melon Lord". He has Toph play the Melon Lord's forces, while the others attack it, with Aang supposed to deliver the final blow. But when the simulated fight actually takes place, Aang is unable to kill the fake Fire Lord. Sokka does it for him while Aang winces, cutting the melon in half.
During dinner, Katara finds a painting of what she at first believes to be a painting of Zuko as a baby, until Zuko tells them that it's actually a picture of his father. When Zuko says that the sweet and innocent baby Ozai grew up to be a monster, Aang points out to everyone that he's still a human being. When Zuko berates him, Aang begins arguing with the group, telling them that he can't kill Ozai, as it goes against everything the monks taught him. The others, especially Zuko, tell him that he needs to kill Ozai for the good of the world. Aang storms off to the other side of the house, and meditates in the balcony.
The Lion Turtle
That night, Aang awakens in a trance and walks down to the beach, into the water and swims to a mysterious island that had appeared only that night, with Momo flying along behind him. When he wakes up the next morning, he discovers he has left the Fire Nation and is on a strange island in the middle of the sea with Momo. He briefly wonders if he's in the Spirit World, but dismisses that possibility as Momo can see him and he is still able to bend. He searches the island and finds a strange hexagonal formation in the center which he is unable to bend, meaning it is not Earth. He decides to meditate, and seek the wisdom of his past lives. The first past life he contacts is Roku, who tells him he doesn't know where he is, but he can offer advice on Aang's other problems.
When Aang tells him about how conflicted he is in taking Ozai's life, Roku tells him of when he was the Avatar. He tried to show restraint in his time, but Fire Lord Sozin took advantage of him. Roku says that if he had been more decisive, he could have stopped the war before it started, and he tells Aang to be decisive. Next, Aang contacts Avatar Kyoshi, who tells him of when she fought Chin the Conqueror, and how she would have done whatever it took to uphold justice. She advises Aang to let justice guide his way. Aang looks deeper inside himself and contacts Avatar Kuruk. Kuruk tells him that when he was young, he generally played no part in shaping the world, since he lived during a time of great peace and people generally worked out their own problems. However, Koh the Face Stealer took Kuruk's wife away from him. Kuruk blames himself for not being attentive enough, and advises Aang to actively shape his destiny. Finally, seeking an Avatar who would be more sympathetic to him, Aang contacts the Air Nomad Avatar Yangchen. Aang tells her how he was taught to respect all life, and remove himself from the world to attain spiritual peace. Yangchen sympathizes with him, but tells him that the Avatar must sacrifice his spiritual well-being for the good of the world. Aang concludes that he has no choice but to kill the Fire Lord.
When he wakes up the following morning, he sees the Earth Kingdom shore getting closer, and realizes the island is moving. He dives and discovers the island is actually a creature, which reveals itself to be a Lion Turtle. He asks the Lion Turtle for advice, seeking a way to defeat the Fire Lord without killing him. The Lion Turtle gives him spiritual advice and tells him of the time before the Avatar and the Four Nations. A little while later, the Lion Turtle leaves Aang at the shore, and tells him to wait for Ozai.
Soon after, Sozin's comet arrives and hits the atmosphere, turning the sky red. Ozai's fleet of Airships arrive at the Earth Kingdom shore, with Ozai's ship in the lead. Ozai uses his comet-enhanced Firebending to begin burning the Earth Kingdom. Aang uses Earth and Firebending to disable Ozai's ship. Initially shocked to find the Avatar there, Ozai flies like a rocket over to Aang. Aang asks Ozai not to go on with his plan, saying he has the power to stop it. Ozai merely sneers at his proposal and attacks Aang.
Aang and Ozai begin to battle. Aang skillfully uses all four elements against Ozai's comet-enhanced Firebending, but Aang still remains on the defensive, allowing Ozai to chase him all around the rock spires. Ozai then begins to use lightning attacks that get closer and closer to Aang. Finally, Aang absorbs one of the blasts, but due to his belief that all life, no matter the crimes, is sacred, he is unable to shoot it back at Ozai, and instead redirects it upwards into the sky away from Ozai. Incensed, Ozai attacks Aang even more fiercely and finally gets the upper hand over him. Aang takes refuge by forming a rock sphere around himself. Ozai repeatedly strikes, all the while calling him and the Air Nomads weak. With a powerful fire blast, Ozai breaks Aang's earthen sphere and Aang is pushed into a wall. The stone presses his scar and the seventh chakra unlocks, allowing him access to the Avatar State. Aang then activates the Avatar State, and in an impressive simultaneous movement, bends all four elements to counter Ozai, gaining the upper hand. When he is about to give the final blow, he leaves the Avatar State, saying that he doesn't want to end it like this. When Ozai tries to take advantage of this moment, Aang pins him down with Earthbending, and uses Energybending he learned with the Lion Turtle, and he strips Ozai of his Firebending. He then uses the Avatar State to extinguish the fire caused by the Airships.
After the War
The next day, Aang attends Zuko's coronation, dressed in new attire (quite similar to Monk Gyatso's). He speaks briefly with the soon-to-be Fire Lord, and both of them marvel at how much things have changed throughout the course of their journey. Both of them hug, and promise to remain friends and rebuild the world together. When Zuko is crowned, he promises to redeem the honor of the Fire Nation, and work with the Avatar to restore the balance of the world.
Some time after this, the group is shown at the Jasmine Dragon, where they are relaxing. Sokka is painting a picture to remember the good times they had together, but it is criticized by everyone. In his picture, Suki is Firebending, Iroh is very round and Zuko complains that his hair isn't that spiky, and Toph says that everyone looked perfect to her, which causes the group to laugh. Aang is shown smiling, then he leaves and goes outside, soon followed by Katara. The two smile at each other, and then lean into each other, embracing one another in a hug. Katara then instigates a passionate kiss, starting what fulfilled Aunt Wu's prediction a year prior.
Aang is fun-loving, somewhat naive and adventurous. He possesses a deep respect for life and freedom, refuses to eat meat, and is often reluctant to fight. He craves the stimulation of new people and places. His frequent off-course detours frustrate both allies and pursuers alike. Yet Aang has always prided himself on a complex social network of friends extending over all four nations, and war will not stand in his way. In addition, he looks forward to playing with all the exotic fauna in each place he visits. Whether it's penguins, pig hog-monkeys or gigantic eels, no fit animal Aang sees goes un-ridden.
Within this carefree exterior however, Aang hides a great deal of guilt and mental burden in his duties as Avatar. Very much the reluctant hero, he wishes he had been there to help his people a century ago. This initially caused him to conceal his true identity from friends, and he still has a tendency to slack off in his studies of the Bending Arts, even though he naturally excels at it. He also tends to becomes very distressed when he sees destruction caused be the war, believing that as the Avatar, it is his job to prevent such events from happening. During "The Storm", Aang decided to stop dwelling on the past, however on several occasions his desire to end the war as caused him to take desperate action such as attempting to induce the avatar state or facing Fire Lord Ozai before he had fully mastered the elements.
Being the last Airbender and having no living peers (with the exception of the aged King Bumi and Guru Pathik), Aang has developed very strong bonds with his friends (particularly Katara) explained by Guru Pathik as a reincarnation of his love for his people. His desire to protect them however leads to violent emotional outbursts when they are threatened and he will even resort to deceiving and hurting others to keep the group together. In "Bato of the Water Tribe", Aang heard that Katara and Sokka might leave the group to visit their father, so Aang hid the map showing his whereabouts and lied about ever having it in the first place.
Aang prefers not to use his bending skill in battle due to his peaceful nature. He prefers to solve problems non-violently. Even when forced into combat, Aang typically holds back, fighting defensively and trying to subdue opponents without seriously hurting them, even if they are not human. This attitude was apparently common among all Airbenders, who were all vegetarians and taught that all living things are precious. The only exception to Aang's pacifism is when his friends are threatened; in which case, he gets very angry and relentlessly attacks his opponents, sometimes even entering the Avatar State. But even in these extreme circumstances he has never taken a life.
Recent events in the Earth Kingdom, however, have begun to take a toll on his care-free personality. Aang's attitude changed dramatically when Appa was captured. He became visibly enraged and hostile, particularly toward Toph, who was "keeping an eye on" Appa while they were gone. Despite attempts by Katara to calm Aang down, his anger continued to grow until finally he flew off to search for Appa alone. Eventually Aang returned to the group, but was still visibly upset. He violated the principles of Airbending when Momo was snatched up by a Buzzard-Wasp. He followed the creature and rescued Momo, but then unnecessarily struck it down with his staff. After Aang returned with Momo the group was confronted by the Sandbenders who had taken Appa. When one of the Benders revealed that they had sold the bison, Aang lashed out and smashed all their sand boats in a matter of moments. He then turned his sights on the Sandbenders and entered the Avatar State. Aang's rage was only stopped when Katara grabbed hold of him and held him in an embrace until he finally calmed down and returned to his normal state.
After failing in Ba Sing Se, Aang began to feel angry and upset with him self. He felt an urge to redeem himself, and refused to let the others fight in the invasion due to "his mistake." After leaving the ship in a violent storm, he was stopped in the water by the harsh tides. But spirits of Yue and Roku allowed Aang to see that his mistakes were not his fault, and to let others help him. He then returned to his lighter attitude soon after.
Four days before the invasion, Aang began to have nightmares about failing against fighting the Fire Lord. After each dream, Aang began to unravel, and after choosing to avoid them by not sleeping. This caused him to mentally fall apart even more, and began to see intense hallucinations, blanking off into realistic day dreams. His friends, the night before the invasion, finally forced him to sleep, in which he finally defeated the Fire Lord in his dreams and came back to sanity.
During the invasion, Aang became extremely upset upon not being able to find Fire Lord Ozai, believing that he had lost his only chance to defeat him and end the war. However Aang later decided to face Ozai anyway, even though be this time the eclipse had passed and Ozai now had his powerful firebending back. He was dissuaded, however, by Toph and Sokka who advised him to retreat and attack at a more adventageous time.
After the invasion, Aang was unwilling to face the reality of having to learn Firebending, and wanted to have some fun at the Western Air Temple. However with the arrival of Zuko, he once again began training in earnest. Although he had planned to wait until after the comet to face Ozai, upon learning of the Fire Lord's plan to burn through the earth kingdom, he decided to engage him anyway, even though he wasn't fully trained. However he became extremely conflicted upon learning that he would probably have to take Ozai's life.
As the incarnation of the Avatar, Aang possesses the ability to bend all four elements, making him the most powerful bender in the world. Because the Avatar spirit has mastered all the elements many lifetimes over, Aang has exceptional natural talent towards bending. Aang can also bend two elements at the same time, as demonstrated in "The Tales of Ba Sing Se". Though Avatar Roku says mastering the elements can take many years, Aang was able to attain great skill with all four within a year after his release from the iceberg. Most Avatars are not told of their status until they are sixteen years of age, but Aang had become a fully-realized Avatar by the end of the series, while he was biologically still only twelve years old, making him the youngest known person to do so. Conversely, because he is chronologically 112 years old, Aang is also has the distincion of having taken the longest to achieve this status.
By the series' beginning Aang is already an Airbending master, the youngest in history. Aang achieved his mastery tattoos when he mastered 35 of the 36 tiers of Airbending and invented a new Airbending technique, the Air Scooter. Because Air is his natural element, it is the one he utilizes the most in battle. Once Aang begins to learn the other elements, for tactical purposes he relies less on Airbending though it continues to remain his signature element. As a master, Aang's skill with Airbending is exceptional, being able to fight on-par with powerful masters or against large numbers of opponents. He has been shown to create tornadoes and currents of air strong enough to lift or deflect extremely heavy objects. Aang's skill with air is great, even perilous, though his pacifistic Air Nomad nature halts the use of air as a deadly weapon (unless he is enraged or in the Avatar State). Instead, Aang uses Airbending for pure defense, evasion or other round-about methods of combat other than aggression. When not in battle Aang uses Airbending in his everyday life, often for flying with his glider, or simply to augment his natural agility. While in the Avatar State, Aang's Airbending power is magnified to the point he can erode solid rock away with a powerful gust of air.
Though Aang was originally better at Waterbending than his friend Katara, or at least learned it quicker, once she trained under Master Pakku her skills developed rapidly. Katara was deemed a Waterbending Master and became Aang's teacher for the rest of the series. Aang has great skill with Waterbending, though it is one of his least used elements in battle, instead favoring other readily-available elements such as earth or air. He does not carry a water skin, preferring to bend from large sources of water such as rivers, lakes or oceans. By Book 3, it is clear Aang has mastery over the element, capable of creating massive tidal waves (with the help of the moon spirit) or bending entire streams of water. While in the Avatar State, Aang can bend an entire ocean to rise, mimicking the moon pulling the tides. Unlike Katara, Aang does not learn the healing aspects of Waterbending.
Because Earthbending is the natural opposing art of Airbending, Aang had great difficulty learning the bending art. Airbenders rely on indirect methods of combat, while Earthbending requires a head-on approach. When Aang was forced to protect Sokka, he stood his ground rather than avoid conflict, showing that he had an Earthbender's attitude; he was able to Earthbend soon thereafter. For the rest of the series his Earthbending improves greatly, allowing him to utilize Air, Water and Earthbending in combat together effectively. Aang is capable of bending large boulders, sending massive columns of rock flying or forming earthen armor around his body for protection. By Book 3 Aang can fight and bend blindfolded, detecting things outside of his line of vision by using Toph's seismic sense. While in the Avatar State, Aang can manipulate massive columns of rock, compress boulders into pebbles, or send rocks flying at mach speeds, and requires no physical connection with the ground to Earthbend. Aang does not learn to bend metal, expressing interest in doing so only sarcastically while sabotaging the drill at Ba Sing Se, before the technique was developed by Toph.
In Book 1, Aang is given the opportunity to learn Firebending early from Master Jeong Jeong, against the normal order of learning (Air, Water, Earth, Fire). While training, Aang's impatience to learn the basics of Firebending results in him harming Katara, an accident which caused him great shame. He swore from then on never to Firebend again, out of fear of losing control again. It isn't until the later half of Book 3 when the Invasion plan fails that Aang seeks to learn Firebending. After accepting Prince Zuko as his teacher and discovering the true meaning of fire from the dragons Ran and Shao, Aang no longer fears Firebending and begins his training in the bending art. He is shown to be quite skilled, yet initially reluctant to show the aggressive attitude required for Firebending. Aang is capable of the Dancing Dragon form, as well as powerful kicks and blasts able to incapacitate a Fire Nation Airship with the help of Sozin's Comet. In preparation for fighting the Fire Lord, Zuko taught Aang lightning redirection, a highly advanced and unique technique of Firebending that Zuko's uncle Iroh invented. While in the Avatar State, Aang can create powerful and destructive streams of fire, as well as melt solid stone. Aang does not learn to bend lightning during the series.
Aang is also able to use an ancient form of bending called Energybending, which he used to strip Ozai of his bending, leaving Ozai permanently drained and in a state of weakness. According to Lion Turtle, before the Avatar existed, people didn't bend the elements, but the energy within themselves. However, in order to bend another's energy, the benders own spirit must be unbendable, or they can be corrupted and destroyed. It has been confirmed that Aang is not the first Avatar to learn Energybending. There have been others. However, there are few who have learned this bending and even fewer who have used it due to its dangers. Having appeared in only one episode of the series, the full range and potential of the discipline is not shown.
Aang is extremely agile and quick. Frequently, he can defend himself without needing to resort to bending by simply dodging and avoiding attacks. He sometimes uses techniques similar to the martial art Aikido, which is the pursuit of harmony in conflict situations, rather than destroying or defeating the opponent. This technique is shown in some fights with Aang and in the Fire Nation School against the student Hide. Aang defeats him, without even touching him, but instead just dodging his blows and pushing him when he is off-balance.
This behavior is matched by his airbending principles, which emphasise non-aggression. The martial art which airbending is based on, Baguazhang, consists of intricate foot and palm movements to dodge, walk circles around the enemy and strike unexpectedly as well as defend from all angles - all principles which Aang utilizes often.
Aang can use his glider staff too with great skill, using it sometimes for attack, defense, or bending.
As can be seen in the episode "The Headband", Aang is also an agile and extremely talented dancer, being able to perform somersaults in mid-air among other acrobatic feats and coordinate with Katara in a dance. His somersaults at that time did not seem to be aided by airbending, as he was in a public area surrounded by Fire Nation students and there was no sign of any air currents around him.
Aang is the newest incarnation of the spirit of the planet, which has been continually reincarnated since before memorable history. The passage of reincarnation moves from the population of the Air nation to the Water, Earth and Fire nations in order. The most recent incarnations were Avatar Roku (fire), Avatar Kyoshi (earth), Avatar Kuruk (water) and Avatar Yangchen (air). Aang often receives advice and guidance from Avatar Roku, the previous Avatar incarnation. Born into the Fire Nation in life, Roku is a benign force in spirit, serving as Aang's advisor and protector. On the Winter Solstice, after informing Aang of the impending return of Sozin's Comet, he manifested himself to defeat a group of Firebenders holding Aang's friends hostage. (When Roku manifests, his voice can be heard behind Aang's when he speaks.) He has guided Aang several times since, appearing to Jeong Jeong to persuade him to teach Aang, offering critical wisdom in the ways of the Spirit world during "The Siege of the North", and revealing to Aang the nature of the Avatar State.
After receiving a letter from Guru Pathik in "The Earth King", Aang journeys to the Eastern Air Temple to learn to control the Avatar State. Guru Pathik reveals that the secret of entering, controlling, and leaving the Avatar State by free will lay in the 'releasing' of seven chakras. Aang has little trouble with the first six, but struggles with the seventh - earthly attachments, namely, Katara. Aang's love for Katara, accompanied by a vision of her in dire need of help, captured in Ba Sing Se, causes him to leave the Guru and return to Ba Sing Se. Guru Pathik states that Aang's refusal to let Katara go has 'locked the final chakra' and disallowed him to enter the Avatar State at all. Later, in "The Crossroads of Destiny", however, Aang begins to open the Seventh Chakra and enter the Avatar State by doing just as he had been told - letting go of his attachment to Katara. However, moments after entering the Avatar State, the process is interrupted as he is struck with lightning from behind by Azula, nearly killing him and removing him from the State. Fortunately, after their escape, Katara is able to use the water from the spirit oasis to revive him.
Nonetheless, Aang's connection to his previous lives is severely damaged by this and he has to undertake a journey into the spirit world, meeting with the last four Avatars, to restore it. While he is successful the link to his past selves is not completely restored, because of the wound he suffered, leaving him unable to enter the Avatar State. While he was still able to contact his past lives and enter into the Spirit World, it is only during his fight with Ozai that the connection was fully restored. See: Escape from the Spirit World
The Avatar also has the capacity to act as a medium, a bridge between mortal world and the Spirit World, the plane of existence where the universe's disembodied spirits dwell. Through inducing a deep meditative state, Aang can separate from his body and travel the physical world's astral plane in astral form, or, with the help of a gateway, travel completely to the Spirit World. Once in the Spirit World, Aang can travel freely and communicate with beings such as Avatar Roku or Koh the Face Stealer. This position as intermediary also allows him to channel other spirits while in the Avatar State. He once acted as the Avatar of the Ocean Spirit to defeat the Fire Nation during the siege of the North Pole. He has also channeled the spirits of previous Avatars, namely Roku and Kyoshi.
- Aang is considered to be a fully realized Avatar, but he is biologically 12 years of age, which can be considered ironic as, technically, he was not supposed to be told of his identity as the Avatar for another four years.
- Aang is believed by some fans to be the shadowed Airbender in the opening due to the resemblance in shape and size between the two. This may not be correct however, freezing the frame appears to show that the shadowed airbender appears to have a moustache and a very different face from Aang. But it is not certain as it very hard to make out.
- Since Avatar Roku is the maternal great-grandfather of Zuko and Azula and was the previous Avatar, Aang Zuko and Azula are related spiritually.
- Aang is written 安昂 - ān áng - meaning "peaceful soaring".
- Aang's premature departure from his Avatar State training to rescue Katara in "The Guru", and its results, are very reminiscent of Luke Skywalker's impulsive actions in the Star Wars film The Empire Strikes Back.
- Aang's saying that he never used aggression to take a life may be incorrect, as he struck down a Buzzard-Wasp that had kidnapped Momo in "The Desert". Though it is possible that the creature wasn't killed, simply injured. It is also implied that Aang killed most of the Fire Nation soldiers during the Siege of the North, however that cannot be associated to him since he was under the influence of the Avatar State (the Combined Spirits of all the Past Avatars) and La (The Ocean Spirit, who was angry and didn't share Aang's beliefs).
- The release of Aang's seventh chakra in "Sozin's Comet, Part 4: Avatar Aang" appears to be triggered by the impact of his lightning scar with the cliff face, bearing no apparent connection to its ostensible blockage (his refusal to let go of his affection for Katara).
- During The Awakening while healing Aang, Katara mentions that a great deal of energy is locked up around the scar. It is implied that this is the energy he began to summon when unlocking the Avatar State, which somehow become locked around the scar when he was struck and is released (along with access to the state) in the finale.
- It can be speculated that her temporary romantic rejection of him earlier in the series finale is what makes this release possible as the block to the state no longer exists.
- However his love for her may not have been the cause of the block, as previous Avatars (such as Roku) have had control of the state while loving someone and when he began to unlock the chakra it was to use that power to help them escape a losing battle and hence protect her. Rather as the chakra releases "cosmic energy" the block may have been caused by his own inability to see past his love for her to his greater duty to the world, which he willingly accepts in the finale thus removing the block.
- Also, given Yangchen said it was impossible for the Avatar to detach himself/herself from the world, it is possible that he gains control of the State another way. While he is fighting Ozai, his eyes and tattoos glow continuously, as they have when he used the state reflexively, so it is possible that he gained mastery over the Avatar State when he was able to stop the Avatar Spirit from killing Ozai, as when he next uses the State it works as it has for previous Avatars who mastered it.
- Aang chose four toys out of thousands--turtle shell (Water), a string-powered propeller (Air), a Hog Monkey (Earth) and a drum (Fire). These four toys were the same ones that past Avatars had chosen for generations when they were children. This is the same procedure a child must go through in order to be recognized as the reincarnation of a Tulku Lama in Tibetan Buddhism. According to the book Magic and Mystery in Tibet by Alexandra David-Néel, "a number of objects such as rosaries, ritualistic implements, books, tea-cups, etc., are placed together, and the child must pick out those which belonged to the late tulku, thus showing that he recognizes the things which were his in his previous life".
Appearances and References
- Avatar Series Pilot
- New Recruits (Ambiguously Canon)
- School Time Shipping
- Bending Battle
- Swamp Skiin' Throwdown
- Gym Time
- Avatar: The Last Airbender - The Burning Earth
- Avatar: The Last Airbender - Into the Inferno
- The Last Airbender
- The Last Airbender 2
- The Last Airbender 3