The Legend Of Korra season 2 episode 12 review: Harmonic Convergence

Review Kaci Ferrell 25 Nov 2013 - 06:32

The Legend Of Korra reaches its Book Two conclusion this week, with yet more stunning artwork...

This review contains spoilers.

2.12 Harmonic Convergence

In the season finale of The Legend of Korra, Unalaq fuses with Vatuu and tries to destroy the world, Raava's connection to the previous Avatars is destroyed, and everyone breaks up.

Though I don't often comment on the animation of this show, I feel like I should begin this review by noting how absolutely stunning this episode was from a visual standpoint. The fight scenes were well-executed and the colours were unbelievably vivid. Although this show sets itself a high bar every week with consistently excellent visuals, the finale somehow managed to exceed that.

I'm not entirely sure I can give quite that level of praise to the actual plot of the finale, which is fairly full of plotholes and deus ex machinas. (Oh, so the tree Vatuu was imprisoned in just happens to be a tree that can restore memories and help you meditate even though this has never been mentioned before until now? How very convenient!) But to be perfectly honest with you, I don't want to focus on the negatives. I'd much rather talk about the things that did work because when they did, they were great.

A great example is Tenzin, who has floundered this year without a sense of purpose. Who he's become doesn't match the image he carries in his head of who he is: Aang's heir. In some ways, that's true: it does rest on him to revive an entire culture, after all, but in other ways, it absolutely doesn't. For all that Aang and Korra have shown us that the Avatar is a regular person with regular concerns, in many ways, their peers will never be able to relate to the weight that rests on their shoulders. Sure, other shows have explored this theme really well (I recommend Buffy the Vampire Slayer if you're interested in the dynamic), but Legend of Korra really hit it on the head well here. Tenzin may be the hope for the Air Nomads, just as Aang was, but he's not the Avatar. He cannot, nor should he expect himself to, live up to that standard. This is brilliantly executed when, in the fog of lost souls, he is confronted by an image of his father, who tells him that he must accept himself for who he is: Tenzin, not Aang.

Another great moment is when Jinora gets to come to the rescue. What on earth she actually does is one of those aforementioned plot holes, because heck if I know how or what exactly she accomplishes, but there's no denying that it's what turns the tides in Korra's favour against Vaatu. After episode after episode of Jinora being the damsel in distress that everyone needed to save, it was so great to see her become the hero. I really hope that, now that the spirit world is no longer divided from the human world, we'll get to have Jinora involved more next season; surely her spiritual gifts will be needed. (I do wonder, just as I wondered about Iroh in AtLA, why Jinora is gifted in this way that other people don't seem to be, but I don't really need an explanation, I suppose.)

There are a lot of great little moments, too, like Varrick escaping from prison and Mako and Korra finally being honest with each other about their break up (and Bolin and Eska being similarly honest), or the absolutely awesome scene where Lin metalbends herself and the president out of a sinking airship full-on Spider-man style. I think I grinned for about five minutes about the role reversal there.

All in all, this episode, like this season, was hit-or-miss, but I choose to think of the good rather than the bad. I really do love this universe and these characters and I genuinely believe that the writing will improve in season three. I honestly look forward to it and I can't wait for it to arrive.

Read Kaci's review of the previous episode, Night Of A Thousand Stars, here.

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