Avatar: The Last Airbender is without a doubt one of the most beloved and influential animated series of our time. The show’s creators managed to capture the essence of what it means to be young and curious, while also providing insightful lessons about friendship, community, and responsibility. Avatar was especially interesting because it challenged people’s basic assumptions about the world around us. How often do we take things for granted? What if we were more discerning in everything that we do? The franchise has been incredibly successful as well. Avatar made box office history when it came out back in 2010, earning over $2 billion worldwide by the end of its run. All five seasons of the series have been made available for streaming on Netflix since 2013 and have gotten frequent refreshes ever since. Despite all these achievements and positives, very few franchises have been able to survive as many changes over so many years as Avatar has. This article is going to explore some of the reasons why this may not have happened for the better, despite how great most incarnations have been overall.
The Success of the Original Series
The original Avatar series came together in part because of the success of The Last Airbender. The original show debuted on Nickelodeon in 2005 and ran for six seasons. It was well-regarded by critics and got a solid amount of viewership, but it never really took off in the same way as The Last Airbender did when it first aired. The first series managed to garner an average of 2.4 million viewers per episode. The sequel series, The Legend of Korra, also performed better than its predecessor, but was ultimately less well-received. However, both shows were successful enough to warrant two direct-to-video films and an upcoming spin-off show.
The Avatar: The Last Airbender Movie
The most recent Avatar series, Avatar: The Last Airbender, was not a continuation of the original series but rather a sequel to it. This show was the work of multiple creators and was heavily influenced by the first series. It ran for only 52 episodes and was produced in cooperation with Netflix. It was much less popular than the original series, but it did manage to get a movie adaptation as well. Sure, it also had the same problems as the original show, namely that it was critically panned and had a low viewership, but it was still a significant enough property to warrant a release. The show was not a commercial success, but it did manage to win a fan-driven award for Favorite Animated TV Series at the 2008 IGN Awards. This was an impressive feat and definitely worth noting.
A New Show, A New Franchise
The success of the original series led to the creation of a blockbuster movie franchise. Avatar: The Last Airbender followed the adventures of Aang, who was the Avatar in the original series. The movie was released on December 19, 2010, earning $77 million on its opening day. The film went on to earn $301 million at the box office, making it the highest-grossing animated film of all time. The next film in the series, The Legend of Korra, proved to be even more successful. The sequel was released on June 20, 2013, and managed to earn an impressive $71 million on its opening day. Both films have since been available for streaming on Netflix. The Avatar universe is now being expanded with a new TV series, The Legend of Korra. Like the original show, the series is a continuation of the original Avatar story. Unlike the original series, The Legend of Korra does not have a continued focus on the Avatar role, but rather follows the adventures of Korra and her friends as they face new challenges and threats in the world. The series premiered on October 26, 2015, on the streaming service, and it has been regularly revised ever since.
Why Can’t We Just Keep Everything the Same?
The original series was a great success, but even this could not last. The second series, The Legend of Korra, was more popular than the original show, but it still did not measure up to the original series. Fans were disappointed that the show was not a direct continuation of the first series, but they also recognized that it was still a great show on its own. The third and final season of The Legend of Korra was met with a great deal of criticism. Many people thought that it was too dark and did not live up to the standards that the show had set all those years ago. It was also the end of the road for the original series, which had been on air for ten years. So, the creators were clearly winding down the series to make room for new things, but it was still a disappointment for fans.
Changes to the Premise
The Avatar franchise had a rocky transition into the sequel series. In the original series, the Avatar had to struggle with the fact that he was not from this world. He had to deal with certain restrictions, such as being out of touch with technology. The second series, The Legend of Korra, also had a similar storyline about a human who had to learn to balance their new life with the past. In the latest series, The Last Airbender, the characters have to deal with the fact that they have been trapped in an iceberg for 50 years while waiting for a rescue. The series has also been criticized for its negative portrayals of women and racial minorities, among other issues.
Bad Writing and Voice Acting
The original series was a great success, but fans were also quick to point out that the writing was not great. The dialogue was too simplistic and often felt unrealistic. The acting was also a mixed bag. Fans were thrilled that the original cast had reprised their roles, but many others were disappointed with the performances. The Legend of Korra series was also met with mixed reviews. Some people thought that it had improved over time, but many others felt that the characters had become unlikable or even offensive. The most recent series, The Last Airbender, was also criticized for its writing and voice acting. Many fans felt that the dialogue was too simplistic, and others noted that the voice acting was not up to par.
The original series had a lot of moral dilemmas, but the sequel series also managed to touch on some of these issues. The Legend of Korra tackled the issue of war and oppression, while the most recent show, The Last Airbender, explored the issue of family and legacy. All of these issues were present in the original series, but they were also explored more deeply in the sequel shows. The question remains as to whether this was an improvement or a regression.
Too Dark for Kids?
Avatar: The Last Airbender was a great success, but fans were also quick to point out that it was not appropriate for children. The violence, themes, and dark atmosphere made it one of the most mature animated series around, and it was not suitable for younger viewers. Many critics agreed that the series was not appropriate for younger viewers, but others believed that the show was too dark for them. This led some fans to believe that the franchise had gotten too dark and was no longer suitable for them.
Wrapping Things Up
The original Avatar series only lasted for six seasons, but it had a significant impact on viewers. The franchise felt like it was full of potential and was not content with just being a popular animated show. The show had a solid following when it first aired, and it continued to maintain a dedicated following after it went off the air. The original series was a great example of a successful animated franchise. It was one of the most popular shows on TV, and it had a significant lasting impact on viewers. The show managed to touch on many important issues while staying true to the story of a young boy becoming the Avatar.