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Author Topic: What Could've Been Done Better?  (Read 6352 times)

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Offline Arcanger

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What Could've Been Done Better?
« on: January 06, 2013, 07:59:58 AM »
This thread is for constructively critiquing The Legend of Korra as a whole. Criticism is a great way to improve your understanding of narrative. It makes you a better storyteller, writer, and thinker. Its a way to really understand the stories you internalize, and thus what you, as an individual, value in narrative and in life. So, on that note, what were your issues with the series? What do you think was done well? What do you think could've been done better?

Remember that, while we're all fans, this thread was made to address perceived problems in the series, evaluate if they really are problems, and find alternate solutions. Do not disrespect others' opinions; they do not invalidate your own.

Commence the discussion!



Offline Blu

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Re: What Could've Been Done Better?
« Reply #1 on: January 06, 2013, 08:13:25 AM »
First up: Republic City.

I'm one of the people who doesn't romanticise the detail afforded to the Ba Sing Se arc in ATLA, because I think it was similarly bare. But LOK seemingly had so much more time to establish a real living city, and all the more reason to do so. Particularly since the Equalists were initially portrayed as representing the common non-bender, it would have been nice to get more of a feel for what life was actually like for the common non-bender.

The action basically revolved around a few specific locales - Air Temple Island, the arena, etc - which is fine, but none of them felt particularly hooked into the daily life of the city. Its like in Batman Returns (trust me I'm going somewhere with this) where the action revolved around a few locations, but so much happens in the main town square beneath Shreck's building and it kinda felt like the centre of all the conflict in the film, and in Gotham itself. Were told that the arena is a place where benders and non-benders come together, and it could have easily served that purpose, but we never see that.

Offline Deist Zealot

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Re: What Could've Been Done Better?
« Reply #2 on: January 06, 2013, 09:39:41 AM »
More genuine camaraderie among the central cast, for one.  And with the various hints that the Equalists were (or at least Amon/Noatak was) exploiting entirely legitimate concerns about the status of non-benders, I wish that angle had been explored more.
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Offline Saxy

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Re: What Could've Been Done Better?
« Reply #3 on: January 06, 2013, 10:28:13 PM »
I wish Mako had to work to get Korra back. The way she just accepted him immediately felt like she was waiting around for him, which didn't coincide with her independence.


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Offline Cowboy Colt

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Re: What Could've Been Done Better?
« Reply #4 on: January 06, 2013, 10:46:05 PM »
I wish Mako had to work to get Korra back. The way she just accepted him immediately felt like she was waiting around for him, which didn't coincide with her independence.
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Offline Spruce

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Re: What Could've Been Done Better?
« Reply #5 on: January 07, 2013, 03:17:25 AM »
Would've liked more focus in the relationships. Love geometry is fine, but it sometimes felt like the writers couldn't decide who they wanted with whom either, which was a problem when so much time was devoted to this angle.

Now how about something I think they did right: very different feel to the conflict form ATLA. ATLA was more like a fantasy epic, Korra has a more gritty crime noir that I do like. I think they shifted gears to match the new setting the world is in pretty well, and I still think the antagonists/central conflict overall are more compelling this time around.

The quick version of my take on either series boils down to "ATLA did character driven better, Korra does the larger conflict better".
« Last Edit: January 07, 2013, 03:20:18 AM by Spruce »
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Offline FengLi

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Re: What Could've Been Done Better?
« Reply #6 on: January 07, 2013, 03:21:32 AM »
I actually watched Korra before A:TLA, and the first time watching it I already found Amon's debending of others  to be confusing. He said he was a representative of the spirits (who gave him this power), who represent tradition and spirituality, but his entire group is a revolution and embraces technology.

How important do you guys think it is for his debending power to be explained? If its important (I think it is), then it needs to be addressed before the series can go on, but if the series is moving on in a different direction already then a half-hearted explanation wouldn't be good either.

Also, the lightning. How can everyone generate lightning...who taught them? Toph taught everyone metalbending, and Katara outlawed bloodbending. (no special moves for air, sorry)
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Offline Saxy

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Re: What Could've Been Done Better?
« Reply #7 on: January 07, 2013, 04:41:26 AM »
I don't think debending needs to be explained anymore. He used bloodbending to do it somehow and he was lying when talking about the spirits giving him the power (or he honestly thought they did, which they didn't).

A lot of firebenders can generate lightning. It's more a matter of skill rather than a special power. It could probably be taught by any firebending master.


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Offline Deist Zealot

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Re: What Could've Been Done Better?
« Reply #8 on: January 07, 2013, 04:43:07 PM »
I wish Mako had to work to get Korra back. The way she just accepted him immediately felt like she was waiting around for him, which didn't coincide with her independence.
This.  And considering the overall circumstances, it kind of undermined both characters.  Have a yuan.

I don't think debending needs to be explained anymore. He used bloodbending to do it somehow and he was lying when talking about the spirits giving him the power (or he honestly thought they did, which they didn't).
The fact that there is a "somehow" in there is the issue, I think.  IIRC, Bryke have admitted that they didn't really think it through; it comes off almost like they pulled it out of their hats at the last minute.
I keep:  Lin Beifong's resolve, Asami Sato's integrity, and Bolin's endearing inability to lie.

Offline Saxy

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Re: What Could've Been Done Better?
« Reply #9 on: January 07, 2013, 09:37:44 PM »
I can see why you'd think that they pulled it out at the last minute. I didn't get that impression but it's a problem if others did.

I wish in the flashbacks we would have seen Katara. I would think she would be at those important council meetings. But that could just be me wanting to see more of the old crew.


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Offline FengLi

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Re: What Could've Been Done Better?
« Reply #10 on: January 07, 2013, 10:10:45 PM »
Granted they only had 12 26 minute episodes, so not EVERYTHING could be well explained. Amon's bloodbending just happened to be one that wasn't.

Moving on, I think Amon and his men were way too powerful.
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Offline Deist Zealot

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Re: What Could've Been Done Better?
« Reply #11 on: January 07, 2013, 10:21:16 PM »
Granted they only had 12 26 minute episodes, so not EVERYTHING could be well explained. Amon's bloodbending just happened to be one that wasn't.
And considering that it was kind of an important plot point—he was messing people up badly enough that not even Katara could restore them—it seems like it should have been a somewhat greater priority than, say, the Love Square from Hell.
I keep:  Lin Beifong's resolve, Asami Sato's integrity, and Bolin's endearing inability to lie.

Offline Spruce

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Re: What Could've Been Done Better?
« Reply #12 on: January 07, 2013, 11:02:31 PM »
Granted they only had 12 26 minute episodes, so not EVERYTHING could be well explained. Amon's bloodbending just happened to be one that wasn't.

Moving on, I think Amon and his men were way too powerful.

I actually liked that, gave them more underlying credibility as a threat. If I have zero concern for my heroes every time they get jumped by an ambush because only the Big Bad is worth a snot, I'm liable to start emotionally sleepwalking through the action parts.
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Offline Guyw1tn0nam3

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Re: What Could've Been Done Better?
« Reply #13 on: January 07, 2013, 11:07:26 PM »
Granted they only had 12 26 minute episodes, so not EVERYTHING could be well explained. Amon's bloodbending just happened to be one that wasn't.

Moving on, I think Amon and his men were way too powerful.

I actually liked that, gave them more underlying credibility as a threat. If I have zero concern for my heroes every time they get jumped by an ambush because only the Big Bad is worth a snot, I'm liable to start emotionally sleepwalking through the action parts.


I don't have a problem with a villain being powerful, but being powerful without any reasonable explanation is a different story.

Offline Spruce

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Re: What Could've Been Done Better?
« Reply #14 on: January 07, 2013, 11:12:41 PM »
You talking about Amon, or the henchmen? Because the latter is explained easily enough, and we're just going to have to agree to disagree on the former.
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Offline Saxy

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Re: What Could've Been Done Better?
« Reply #15 on: January 08, 2013, 06:29:26 AM »
I liked the equalists' power. The one thing about it that bugged me though was when they shocked the Fire Ferrets in the water. There's no way they could survive that, let alone fight back soon after.


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Offline Secrets

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Re: What Could've Been Done Better?
« Reply #16 on: January 09, 2013, 05:19:55 AM »
The romance and character development.

I was ticked off that Lin Beifong got her bending back so quickly and that her sacrifice was in vain. Tenzin's family's capture was a weak element to the plot that wasn't necessary whatsoever. And I would have loved for Lin to cope with the loss of her bending and become stronger because of it. I wanted her to teach Bolin everything she knew, in spite of the fact she couldn't bend. It would have made a remarkable arc for S2.

And I didn't like how Korra mastered the Avatar State so quickly. It just...bothered me because while she did work hard and certainly earned her airbending, I just think she wasn't ready to master the Avatar State.

Biggest one though:

KORRA AND ASAMI'S RELATIONSHIP

It could have been done so much better. I wanted to see them as best friends, but at the end of the series they don't even know each other well at all.

Offline quidditchchick

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Re: What Could've Been Done Better?
« Reply #17 on: January 09, 2013, 06:24:41 AM »
The romance and character development.

I was ticked off that Lin Beifong got her bending back so quickly and that her sacrifice was in vain. Tenzin's family's capture was a weak element to the plot that wasn't necessary whatsoever. And I would have loved for Lin to cope with the loss of her bending and become stronger because of it. I wanted her to teach Bolin everything she knew, in spite of the fact she couldn't bend. It would have made a remarkable arc for S2.

And I didn't like how Korra mastered the Avatar State so quickly. It just...bothered me because while she did work hard and certainly earned her airbending, I just think she wasn't ready to master the Avatar State.

Biggest one though:

KORRA AND ASAMI'S RELATIONSHIP

It could have been done so much better. I wanted to see them as best friends, but at the end of the series they don't even know each other well at all.
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Offline Guyw1tn0nam3

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Re: What Could've Been Done Better?
« Reply #18 on: January 11, 2013, 05:28:31 PM »
You talking about Amon, or the henchmen? Because the latter is explained easily enough, and we're just going to have to agree to disagree on the former.

How is it "easily" explained?

The assumption we have to draw is that there are thousands of people who are as capable as Ty Lee on the opposition and Hiroshi Sato is Henry Ford/the Wright Brothers/God of War rolled into one, and I don't like any of these assumptions.

Offline Spruce

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Re: What Could've Been Done Better?
« Reply #19 on: January 12, 2013, 04:10:03 AM »
70 years is time enough for techniques to proliferate. I have seen enough capable non-benders in ATLA to not be surprised by the idea that a regular human being can still be effective vs. a bender. Again, after nearly a century to develop anti-bender combat practices, this isn't that surprising to me. That a fanatical group can get a substantial group to become decently trained isn't unheard of either.

Nor do I have any real issue with the idea of a talented engineer/businessman gone too far. Powerful industrialists with questionable motivations are all too real through IRL history, even with a slight exaggeration I don't have too hard a time suspending my disbelief.
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