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SERIES FINALE REVIEW: Legend of Korra 4×13 “The Last Stand”

Written by Scott Swartz

Now our watch has ended, I know that’s a different show, but man it seems really appropriate after a really good show and an amazing universe are put to rest possibly for good this time. “The Last Stand” unabashedly throws away all pretense of being anything else other than a really great send off for Korra, if there was something you wanted to happen in the course of the series this was your twenty-two minutes. From the brawl between Korra and Kuvira, to the big brotherly moment between Mako and Bolin, the actually end for the episode, this feels like Mike and Bryan’s way of saying “this was for you” and I am perfectly fine with placating the fancies when it is done with the best possible intent. So let’s go one more time into this great and magical world, because it deserves that.

Korra despite it’s faults, and yes it has faults, sure knows how to ratchet up the scope for a finale. Case in point the entire sequence of fighting inside the Colossus as Korra and Kuvira went head to head in an all out brawl. I have to say it was kind of brutal to watch as there was not as much bending as I initially thought, in fact it was more like watching a UFC fight or professional wrestling as each hit had weight and power behind it. You could easily see the damage being done to the combatants and it helped to illustrate that interns of physical strength without the Avatar State, Kuvira was still a match for our heroine. Of course when all was said and done it was clear that Korra was the superior fighter and a true force.

What helped to make this fight and the resolution of Kuvira’s entire arc so great is that she was not defeated by physical force but rather from the fact Korra managed to convince Kuvira to stop her crusade. The conversation in the Spirit World could have come off half hearted or as a major cop out to those of us who wanted to see Kuvira go down hard, but Kuvira is not like Korra’s other adversaries. Kuvira despite all of her power hungry dictator like moves was always working with a better goal in mind, much it in the same way as Amon. She only wanted what she thought would help her people and save the Earth Kingdom she just went about doing it in the wrong fashion. So for Korra to connect with Kuvira on an emotional level and point out that if things had gone slightly different she could have easily been right where Kuvira is was a strong character moment for both sides.

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Speaking of strong character moments Mako finally regained a lot of his credibility after having been sidelined for the majority of the season on Prince Wu duty. The brother team up in the engine room was easily a great set piece and there was actually a moment where I thought that Mako was going to sacrifice himself to save everyone. Although I am glad Mako made it out alive it would have been fitting for him to make the ultimate sacrifice for not only his brother but also his best friends. Plus how cool was it to see Mako lightningbend one last time as he attempted to take down the engine. That may have been one of his coolest moments in the entire series and I loved watching his arm become scared as he poured all of his power into destroying the core. We also got to see Bolin copy Ghazan’s lava disk thing to fight some of Kuvira’s lackeys and it was completely awesome.

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Once everything was finished we got to have one last big conversation with Tenzin about just how much change Korra has affected in the world in such a short period of time and it was a great short scene. That led to the big ending which I am totally cool with as Korra and Asami walked off into the spirit world hand in hand. That is about as close as humanly possible to saying the two of them are now going to be in a relationship and it makes a lot of sense as Asami was the only one Korra contacted in her three years away and the two of them always have had a really strong connection. It will be interesting to see if there is any type of follow up comic like the previous series had, but without a doubt we had a super strong ending that will definitely be discussion worth.

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Overall a stupendous finale to a spectacular series.

Final Grade A

Final Season Grade B+

Final Series Grade B+

+Mako being awesome

+Korra opening a new portal

+Korra vs Kuvira Fight

+Korra defeated Kuvira with force and words

+Varrick’s wedding

+Korra and Asami off into the sunset

Extra Thoughts

-Asami: “Excuse me Tenzin. Varrick is looking for you. Something about wanting to borrow a glider suit to fly off the tower.” Tenzin: “That doesn’t sound like a good idea!” That ladies and gentlemen is Tenzin in a nutshell

-“This isn’t the time to prove how awesome you are. I already know how awesome you are. You’re awesome.” I love when Bolin goes audience perspective on us, it makes things simple and o so enjoyable.

-That shot of Kuvira tangled in the vines with the Spirit Cannon, so much anime style I almost didn’t believe it.

-So I am just going to say Bolin is easily the most impressive member of Team Korra. Earthbender, Probender, Mover star, inventor, diplomat, and now justice of the peace. Seriously how long has he been a legal justice of the peace?

-Lastly, thank you to all the amazingly talented people who worked on this series, you are all unimaginably fantastic.

About the author

Scott Swartz