*storms back to keyboard*
LET ME TELL TO YOU A THING.
Korra’s story in Book One was one of the most meta things ever. Why? Because she was completely aware of the fact that she had to carry on in Aang’s place. As an audience, we expected her to live up to Aang’s legacy, and as a character, she wanted to live up to Aang’s legacy. It’s magnificently meta, because if we as the audience don’t think she succeeded, then she’s not going to think she succeeded.
And what were the reactions to Book One?
"Korra didn’t learn anything."
"Everything sort of resolved itself."
"Korra just solved her problems by punching them."
And what did Book Two say?
Korra still has no idea how to properly airbend, she ran away with her confidence after saving the day and felt that she had it all down when she’d really just scraped by with luck and Aang’s help, her relationship was this rushed-and-rickety thing cobbled together in the middle of a revolution, her ties to her other friends were strained…everything about her that the fandom picked up on proved to be accurate, and it’s come back to bite her this season.
So when I hear people whining about how she “forgot everything she learned in Book One”…what did she learn? That if you punch wildly the air will fly out and knock the guy away? That if you sit down and break down you’ll have your problems fixed? She was guided back to safety, and now that she’s on her own again, she’s getting into trouble. But it’s not just her arrogance, it’s also her shame. Because she knows just as well as we do that she messed up, and that her spiritual side still needs work. She unlocked it, but she can’t do much with it—so she tried to go with Unalaq to help her out. That didn’t go too well. And now she’s trying to solve all of the problems and forgetting her patience lessons, because ONCE AGAIN she’s striving to live up to Aang’s legacy. Unfortunately, she’s still going about it the wrong way, because last time she succeeded with force, so why shouldn’t force work this time, too?
Gosh, I love Korra and her character conflict. BUT EVERYONE ELSE HATES IT AND IT MAKES ME SO MAD.
Swan here with the real talk.