Avatar: The Last Airbender has recently been added to Netflix and I couldn’t be more excited. This program was a show I watched when I was young. It was an animated series around a fictional world, which is divided into four nations each represented by a natural element for which the nation is named after. Benders have the ability to control and manipulate the element from their nation. Only the Avatar is the master of all four elements. The ruthless Fire Nation begins conquering the world but the Avatar has disappeared when the world needs him most. 100 years later, Aang, the long-lost Avatar is discovered. Now his friends old and new must safeguard Aang on his journey to master all four elements and save the world from the Fire Nation’s plans.
My friends and I were obsessed. The show had us hooked from episode one, and it wasn’t just for the cool powers. This show had such a gripping storyline about how hate blinds people, and how love brings us together. The characters are super progressive with blending lines of masculine and femininity, diverse representation of humanity, and complex character structures. The women are strong just like the men and are even better warriors than them in some cases. It is the kind of progressive show I think any adult would be proud of a child watching.
This show proves that shows can be progressive and forward thinking. The show proves that a story can teach kids about diversity, love, hate, and so much more. It opens the minds of those who watch it into the meaning behind the story. It is not surprising that the love for this show allowed for the spin off, The Legend of Korra. It is a continuation of the story with new characters and lessons to teach. However, I can’t help but go back to the original and mark it as an evolution in what a children’s show could be. Avatar: The Last Airbender is a show for any child that wants to watch something entertaining, and the adults who want the kids to learn to embrace humanity.