I want to have Korra’s babies. First, she’s ridiculously good looking. Then, I find her new grown up attitude very appealing. I liked brash Korra, but I only started to fall in love with the character in the second part of Book Two. By the way, I hope you’re used to me referring to this part of the show, because to me it was a real turning point, the moment when it became really, really good. I love that Korra is physically strong but also that she’s been acquiring more wisdom and spiritual power. Spiritual power is the new sexy. You’ll probably also notice that Korra almost never used airbending at the beginning of the show (which, well, fair enough, because she didn’t know it in Book One), but she started using it a lot more as she became more spiritually awakened. I am probably reading a little bit too much into this, but I find it really cool.
Tenzin’s kids, Opal, and Korra finally make it to Air Temple Island, where Korra reunites with her friends in a touching moment full of hugs and pet sidekicks. Seriously, this show has all the pet sidekicks and they’re all adorable. Tenzin, of course, has to ruin everything by asking what happened in Zaofu. Opal quickly explains the situation. Bumi asks about Bolin’s whereabouts.
Bolin, as it happens, is walking through the woods while carrying Varrick on his back. Both are seriously disheveled and filthy from their life in the wild. Bolin gets tired of carrying Varrick, who remembers the time Zhu Li carried him around for miles with a sprained ankle. Bolin immediately drops Varrick to the ground. Varrick wants to forget what he did and just lie down in the forest forever. However, after Bolin’s passionate, motivational speech, Varrick is ready to carry Bolin! I would have loved to see that, except they immediately fall into a trap.
In Republic City, Korra, Asami, and Mako have themselves a nice lunch reunion… with Prince Wu. You know, he plays the role of that one person that none of your friends really knows but one of you invited because he didn’t know what else to do with him and the person ends up making everything really awkward by hitting on everybody and butting in on your personal stories. Don’t look away, it happens even to the best of us. Not that the situation wouldn’t be slightly awkward without Prince Wu, given that Korra, Asami, and Mako haven’t seen each other in three years and Korra hid things from Mako. Prince Wu just makes the scene funnier by being inappropriately invested in their conversation. Wu exits the table to go to the bathroom. He expects Mako to accompany him as usual. We all know what to expect when Mako dismisses him. Wu enters the bathroom, where a seemingly nice valet greets him with a spray of what I assume is sleeping gas. Wu collapses.
Meanwhile, Bolin and Varrick encounter the people who placed the trap: a bunch of firebenders and waterbenders escaped from one of Kuvira’s prison camps who are obviously not too happy with Bolin and Varrick’s uniforms. Things are not looking too good.
Back in Republic City, Mako’s getting worried: lunch has just been served and Prince Wu still hasn’t returned (hard to do when you’ve just been abducted). Mako goes looking for him with the same facial expression and tone as a somewhat annoyed mother who has a slightly needy child. While he’s busy searching for the prince in the bathroom, Asami and Korra wait outside, this until Korra notices the bathroom attendant, who gassed Prince Wu, passing by with a cart full of dirty laundry. Korra follows him to a van. The attendant denies having seen Prince Wu, but the prince sticks his head out of the dirty linens with a big, dumb smile. Korra looks at Wu, Wu collapses again, the attendant looks at Korra, Korra looks at him, and he sends Korra flying before she can do anything. When Asami and Mako join Korra, the van is already dashing away with Prince Wu inside. Thus begins the car chase, where we realize that Republic City has indeed become a full-on city, with street names, bridges, and crosswalks.
The car chase ends abruptly when Korra, who apparently feels like being badass all of a sudden, jumps on top of the van and opens it like Popeye would open a can of spinach. Prince Wu is not inside, so Korra airbends the driver out of the van for an interrogation. Neither Korra nor Mako can get any sort of answer out of him though, aside from the fact that Prince Wu is on his way to wherever Kuvira is. Again, a smart move from Kuvira, who would want Prince Wu either on her side, or just, you know, dead. Still, they don’t know how Kuvira’s henchmen are going to get Prince Wu out of town, which frustrates Mako to the point where I’m pretty sure that a thousand fanfictions will be written about how this moment was the one when he realized his feelings for Wu. Fortunately for him, Korra is on a roll. Instinctively, she walks up to a nearby spirit vine and touches it. She immediately establishes a connection with Prince Wu and is able to guide her friends to where he is being taken: the train station.
Somewhere in the Earth Empire, the leaders of the group of escapees are in the middle of a little exposition session, to explain to Bolin and Varrick how Kuvira has been purging the Earth Empire of anybody not of Earth Empire origins. Oh. Here I thought that Kuvira was “just” Mao Zedong. Now she is also Hitler. Anyway. The escapees want Bolin and Varrick to help them pass the border and pretty much get rid of them afterwards. Still tied up, Bolin lavabends their way to a negotiation. If they all want to get out of Kuvira’s territory, they will have to cooperate.
Korra, Asami, and Mako arrive at the train station. Of course, since the train station is a quite modern one, there are several trains coming and going, and they don’t know where to search. While they try finding the right train by themselves, we go back to the Earth Empire, where Bolin, Varrick, and the escapees approach the checkpoint. The men guarding it are suspicious, but it seems like Varrick and Bolin have enough guts to convince them to let them through despite the absence of official paperwork. Unfortunately, one of the officers recognizes Varrick and Bolin. Chaos ensues. Bolin and the escapees fight off a couple of well-armed mechasuits, barely managing to stand up to them until Varrick improvises an electromagnetic weapon that neutralizes the machines. Varrick and Bolin see an opportunity to run, but Bolin can’t stand the idea of leaving the escapees behind. Once again, his awesome lavabending skills (which he probably could have used before) come in handy and allow everybody to escape.
In Republic City, Korra uses her newly acquired spirit power to find the right train. Mako, Asami, and Korra jump aboard just as it leaves the station. Mako and Korra bicker until Asami finds the prince, who was locked up in a trunk. Korra opens the top of the wagon without any effort and airbends herself and Prince Wu out of it. Asami and Mako join them on the top of the train, where they all fight off several of Kuvira’s henchmen. The henchmen are about to capture them in a metal trap when Korra uses airbending once more to get them safely to the ground. Prince Wu is so grateful he wants to ask Korra out. Again. Korra shuts him down beautifully and finally has time to talk with her friends. The moment ends in a big, warm hug where Prince Wu is NOT invited. Mako then decides to deliver Prince Wu to his family, to the delight of his royalty-loving grandmother.
On the sea shore, Bolin and Varrick embark with the escapees for a trip to the north. Meanwhile, in the swamp, Bataar Jr announces that the spirit vines they just found are way more powerful than any of those found in Republic City. Kuvira is delighted and commands her men to harvest all the vines. Because you know. We needed yet another reason to hate her.
Folks, I’m not going to lie, despite the amount of exposition and the possible plot holes (like, why was Korra able to feel energy through cement), this was an exciting episode. I loved seeing Asami, Mako, and Korra work together again and I love how the dynamics between them have evolved to actually become more mature. I have a feeling that the writers are preparing us for a possible return of Makorra but you know what? If they’re ready to write it right, I could totally get behind it. Also, I’m waiting for more Bolin/Varrick awesomeness in the next episodes, as well as Bolin drawing a comparison between the escapee leaders (who are a male firebender and a female waterbender) and Korra and Mako. Also. Also. Toph versus Kuvira. Don’t tell me you didn’t think about it.
– Anais L