The arena is shut down after the chaos and Korra sweetly tells the brothers they are welcome to stay with her on Air Temple Island but to her dismay, they have already accepted to stay at Asami’s luxurious estate. I think Korra’s loneliness is readily apparent as now she won’t be spending much time with the brothers since probending is officially on hold. Meanwhile Lin find a secret room at the Cabbage Corp building (AND IT HAS A CABBAGE MAN STATUE OUT FRONT!!!) and it seems they have funded the Equalist movement, but….something doesn’t feel quite right. Several people are debriefed on the attack, including a very broken Tahno who requests Korra find and punish whoever did this. She leaves City Hall to visit the brothers at the Sato Estate, where they are readily enjoying the perks of living the high life, which includes splashing around in Asami’s very large, indoor pool. Korra seems less than thrilled to be there and scathingly wonders what Asami has planned, be it makeovers or shopping, but to her surprise, she is taken to a huge race track and shown that Asami is an excellent driver and fighter.
During a break, Korra overhears a phone conversation between Hiroshi Sato and an unknown person discussing the Cabbage Corp siege suspiciously and she quickly rushes to Lin and Tenzin and states her conjecture that he is involved with the Equalists. She is stunned to hear that he has motive as benders are the ones who killed his wife some years back. They agree to take a closer look at Sato but come up empty-handed. Mako expresses his anger with Korra about this intrusion but she stands her ground, even after he states her jealousy drove her to this conclusion. I hated seeing Mako like this as it’s a very self-centered thing for him to say, after all the maturity he’s shown in earlier episodes. Does he not know that Korra is above such pettiness? I digress.
A snitch tells Lin, Tenzin, and Korra about a secret room beneath Sato’s mansion and the swiftly investigate (Lin shows off a fancy move reminiscent of her mother, Toph), resulting in the secret room being revealed. Mako visibly regrets his earlier words to Korra and Asami is shaken by the revelation that her father may in fact be in league with the Equalists. The trio head down below and pass banners with Amon’s mask on them and mecha looking droids lining the walls before a wall slams down and effectively traps them as the droids come to life. Lin is unable to bend the walls or the platinum the droids are made from and the situation begins to look dire. A closer look at the inside of the droids confirms Hiroshi Sato’s involvement and it is here that we get our first look at Tenzin’s superior airbending skills. He bends with such grace (a grace I feel Aang must have had as an adult) and I’m saddened when his scenes end with the trio’s defeat. Luckily, the brothers are not far behind, having disregarding the warnings of Lin and her police force and come face to face with Sato. As he is about to attack them, Asami interrupts, heartbroken and listens as her father explains his reasoning, extending his hand in the hope that she joins him.
This is a difficult decision for Asami, as she is torn between her father, the only family she has left, and her own moral code. Echoing her earlier statement about how much easier it is to ask forgiveness than permission, she attacks her own father and escapes with everyone on the police zeppelin. On board, Mako apologizes to Korra for his harsh words and Lin tells Tenzin she is resigning in order to act outside the law (again, driving home how much she is like her mother).
When Extremes Meet
On the heels of episode 7’s events, the brothers and Asami come to stay on Air Temple Island. They’re given a quick rundown of what’s what and what’s where before Ikki and Korra escort Asami to her new room. Ikki feels this is the best time to inform Asami that Korra has feelings for Mako (this is also where Korra has the best animated face of the season so far) and she awkwardly converses with Asami until Tenzin arrives to tell her of the new police chief being instated. Chief Saikhan is clearly in the pocket and under the influence of smarmy Councilman Tarrlok. Korra wastes no time confronting Tarrlok but is quickly humbled by several well-chosen remarks about her lack of airbending skills. This allows Tenzin and Korra to have another heartfelt conversation and deepens their bond further. He asks if she’s made contact with her past lives and although she admits she’s had visions of Aang, she is aware of her spiritual shortcomings. Tenzin urges her to meditate as he feels Aang is trying to tell her something important. All of this weighs on her heavily and she has a good cry until her friends come to console her and comfort her that she is not alone in her journey.
Team Avatar take a Satomobile into the city, ready to dole out some vigilante justice. They listen to a police scanner Asami remarks dryly has been installed in all Satomobiles (gee, I wonder why) and they stop a jailbreak in progress, subduing them long before the police force even arrive on the scene. Korra smugly informs Tarrlok of Team Avatar’s success and he commands her to stay out of the way. The next day, Tarrlok proposes several new laws regarding non benders, including a curfew and making it illegal to be associated with the Equalists. He faces opposition from Tenzin alone and the laws are passed by majority rule (does anyone else think the Council is good for NOTHING!?). Their second night out on the town, Asami notices the closeness between Korra and Mako and narrows her eyes, whether it be in suspicion or jealousy, at them in her rearview mirror as the group heads to a supposed riot. Groups of non benders are being treated with prejudice and brutality and they call out for Korra’s help. She is outraged at their treatment at the hands of Tarrlok and argues at length about their rights, even as Tarrlok gives the order to imprison all of them. As Korra defies these orders and saves the non benders, Tarrlok turns his attentions to the brothers and Asami, stating his new law allows him to legally imprison them for their associations with known Equalist, Hiroshi Sato. They implore her to heed him for now and to help the non benders. Furious, Korra goes to Tenzin for help in getting out her friends but this is not fruitful and they are forced to leave.
She arrives at City Hall later that night and confronts Tarrlok, stating they need to talk. He dismisses his page/servant person and tells her to spit out what’s on her mind. She lashes out at him, stating he will not manipulate her into doing what he wants. He turns to face his water covered office wall (the fish ying and yang, Tui and La, decorating it) and it is only after Korra compares him to Amon that he snaps and attacks her with amazing skill at waterbending. His office is quickly destroyed and their battle moves to the main hall. She goes to attack him one last time but is stopped in her tracks as Tarrlok bloodbends her. It’s just as terrifying in this series as it was in the original Avatar series. As she begins to lose consciousness, she gets another vision, this one of Aang, Toph, and Sokka being bloodbended as well and comes to as Tarrlok informs her that he is taking her somewhere no one can find her. The episode ends with him driving off with her tied up in the back of his vehicle.
Lau Gan-Lan – We ATLA fans have grown fond of the man with the cabbages, so much so that we hoped a similar character would appear in Legend of Korra. As the episodes flew by and there was no hint of such a person, my heart grew heavy until episode 6 mentioned Cabbage Corp and I thought, “Oh, my God, he got rich!!!” I can only hope the owner and heir of Cabbage Corp is cleared of all charges and is a descendant of that lone Earth kingdom citizen who just wanted to peddle his vibrant, green wares. Hopefully the new Team Avatar doesn’t destroy his legacy!
Chief Saikhan – The new police chief seems to lack the backbone and tenacity of Lin Bei Fong, but next to her, I’m sure anyone would have paled in comparison. It doesn’t help that he is influenced by the shadiest of all councilmen, Tarrlok. Dubbed the “worst Chief of Police ever” by both Korra AND Tenzin, he has a lot to make up for in the upcoming episodes. I really hope he proves himself worthy of being Lin’s successor and doesn’t turn a blind eye to all of Tarrlok’s doings.
Unnamed Bloodbender – The more we see of this guy, the more I think he’s Tarrlok. All we’ve seen about him comes from Korra’s numerous visions and the guy is definitely the unsavory sort. Just check out his stupid smirk. I hope Aang air whips him upside the head. I’m curious to find out more about him and I can only seriously hope he sees some sort of penance for his apparent bloodbending in the vision. CANNOT WAIT TO SEE MOAR OF THESE VISIONS.
1. Cabbage Corps owner is the grandson of the cabbage vendor. It’s too coincidental!
2. Asami’s alliance has been revealed and even though I have secretly harbored treacherous thoughts about her character, I’m sort of disappointed she’s so…good! I can only attribute my growing suspicion about her to wanting Mako and Korra (AND Bolin) to be together so I can’t have an unbiased theory about her at the moment. I just feel like she is going to turn as her growing jealous seems to point in that direction.
3. Jinora states there are caves where the air bison live. As in…A LOT OF AIR BISON?? Where did they all come from? Perhaps my earlier theory about Appa being a pregnant female bison has some truth in it…or more realistically, there might have been some flying around somewhere secluded.
4. Tarrlok snaps when Korra states he is like Amon. Why does this touch a nerve? Is he really so blind that he can’t see the parallels between himself and the masked man? I don’t have much of a theory here since I’ve previously thought Tarrlok was Amon and that is pretty much shattered by the reaction Tarrlok had…unless he IS Amon and he freaked cause someone is close to guessing his alter ego? Seems like a reach at this point, but we’ll see.
5. The man in the vision looks more and more like Tarrlok the more we see him. Add in the sudden revelation that both are bloodbenders and I can safely theorize that they are related. Vision guy is officially Tarrlok’s father in my eyes. Need further proof? Take a peek at his neck brooch cause that certainly look Northern Water Tribe to me, as does all of Tarrlok’s clothing. I had researched some of the other gangs of Republic City previously and there was a gang around Aang’s time that was all waterbenders called the Red Monsoons. Why would anything water related be red? Oh, I don’t know…maybe because they’re ALL bloodbenders?!?!? Anyways, just a minor theory, but let’s see how it plays out in the next two episodes, shall we?