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These characters hail from the Fire Nation.
Voiced by: Dante Basco
"I don't need luck, though. I don't want it. I've always had to struggle and fight, and that's made me strong. It's made me who I am."
Even as the prince of the Fire Nation, Zuko has always struggled in life, particularly in matching his prodigy sister Azula and getting his father's acknowledgement. This came to a head when Ozai punished him for a percieved slight by horrifically burning his face and sending him into exile, refusing to let him return until he had captured the Avatar. (This was intended as a Snipe Hunt, since Aang had been missing for a century.) Determined to prove his worth to his father, Zuko hunted Aang across the world for the first season while trying to find his own destiny.
- Adorkable: All of his attempts to be normal. "Hello! Zuko here!"
- "Why am I so bad at being good!"
- Ambiguously Evil: Zuko is the first antagonist, but is given enough sympathy points through out the first season that it is more than a bit hazy on which side of the fence he'll wind up. After trying to be evil he decides it's not for him.
- Anti-Hero: Type IV or V ---> Type III on the Sliding Scale of Anti-Heroes.
- He becomes Type IV or V again in The Promise.
- Anti-Villain: Type I-II in Season 1.
- Aristocrats Are Evil: Part of his character arc in Seasons 1 and especially 2 is Zuko growing past his sense of aristocratic entitlement, personified in his treasonous Blue Spirit persona. He steals not only for basic necessities, but basically whenever he sees something shiny. Zuko's aristocratic nature eventually becomes a positive motivator for him, to the point where he vows to see Ozai overthrown and the Fire Nation redeemed.
- Arrogant Kung Fu Guy: Mostly in Season 1.
- The Atoner: After his Heel Face Turn he tries to make up for two and a half seasons of being an asshat.
- Authority Equals Asskicking: Like his predecessors in the throne, in The Promise.
- Awesome Moment of Crowning
- Back-to-Back Badasses: With Aang as they face the Firebending Masters. Also with Katara when they're training during the finale.
- Badass: Through being The Determinator.
- Bad Liar: Another trait that makes Azula and him Sibling Yin-Yang.
- Bald of Evil: At first, before he cuts off his ponytail and starts to grow his hair out normally.
- Big Bad Duumvirate: In season one, with Zhao.
- Big Brother Mentor
- Birds of a Feather: With Mai. And in a non-romantic sense, with Katara.
- Break the Cutie: Before his banishment, he was an eager and happy young prince who wanted to learn everything he could to prepare himself to rule. After having a fourth of his face burned off by Ozai and being banished, he becomes a brooding teenager who can barely find anything to be happy about.
- Break the Haughty: Season 2.
- Broken Bird: A rare male example.
- Byronic Hero
- Cain and Abel: Abel To Azula's Cain.
- Calling the Old Man Out: Calls his father, Ozai, out for the monster and horrible father that he is and tells him that he's going join the Avatar to defeat him. Ozai does not take kindly to this.
- Cannot Tell a Joke: His jokes are so bad they're made into jokes by other characters.
- Chick Magnet: Has almost as much onscreen romance as Sokka, plus a fan club and a bunch of random girls that swoon over him at the beach. And a massive Estrogen Brigade. However, he's sort of lacking in the charm department...which is his charm, come to think of it.
- The Comically Serious
- Cosmic Plaything: He's so sure he's this he shouts Smite Me Oh Mighty Smiter during a thunder storm. Given all the crap he's put up with, he just might be right.
- Crazy Jealous Guy: In The Beach all it takes for Zuko to lose his cool is seeing some guy talking to his girlfriend. To be fair, the guy had been eyeing Mai all evening.
- Dark and Troubled Past
- Dark Magical Boy: Want a list?
- Deadpan Snarker
- Defrosting Ice King: It takes two and a half seasons but he thaws with The Power of Friendship.
- Determinator: He chases a flying bison on foot from the South Pole to the North Pole after three years of no leads at all.
- Deuteragonist: Or Tritagonist if you consider Katara the Deuteragonist.
- Didn't Think This Through: He's extremely prone to this and it's lampshaded by Iroh in with an And Then What? moment.
- Don't You Dare Pity Me!:
- Double Consciousness
- Drill Sergeant Nasty: Though not quite as mean as Toph.
- Dual-Wielding: He's quite skilled with double broadswords. And there are those twin fire-knives that he tries (unsuccessfully) to battle Azula with.
- Dueling Scar: His burn scar isn't quite the iconic version, but as a facial scar received in a duel fought in a militaristic culture, it's a pretty clear reference.
- Easily Forgiven: Averted with the Gaang, but Up to Eleven with Iroh, who will always forgive him.
- Even Evil Has Standards: He spoke out against intentionally sending lines of inexperienced troops to die simply to wear down the enemy's defenses for their more experienced forces.
- Eyes of Gold
- Emo Teen: Cranked Up to Eleven in The Abridged Series, but there in the original.
- The Exile
- Facial Horror: However, that scar certainly doesn't affect him being the series' most famous Mr. Fanservice one bit.
- Fan Nickname: Zudork, Failko, Dorko, and Prince Zuko: The Master Cockblocker.
- Fan Service Pack: His Character Development and gradual transformation into a good guy also makes him more attractive.
- Fan Service with a Smile
- The Fettered: Season 1. And then it all sort of starts to crumble in Season 2.
- Freudian Excuse
- Good Is Not Nice
- Good Eyes, Evil Eyes: His eyes indicate moral ambiguity and inner conflict right from the beginning, as one is narrower than the other.
- The Good King: He eventually becomes Fire Lord.
- Good Scars, Evil Scars: His most distinctive physical trait, although the story of how he got it makes him much more sympathetic.
- Hair-Trigger Temper
- Happily Adopted: As of his Heel Face Turn.
- Heel Face Revolving Door: Famously failed to make a Heel Face Turn in season 2, and then finally settled on the Face side in Season 3.
- And he comes back to this in The Promise.
- He doesn't really go evil in The Promise; he simply discovers that doing a decision as a ruler to help one group of people can seriously hurt another, and tries to set up some sort of stable status quo instead of uprooting innocent colonists from their homes. Like always, he could be much more tactful about it, though.
- And he comes back to this in The Promise.
- Heel Realization
- Hidden Heart of Gold: Well, from the heroes' point of view, until his Heel Face Turn, that is.
- Hoist by His Own Petard/Beat Them At Their Own Game: Has the power to inflict this on opponents using Lightning-redirecting, and the only one to use this ability in the manner this trope describes. Learned from Iroh, taught to Aang.
- Honor Before Reason: "HONOOOOOOOOORRRRR!!!!!"
- Hot-Blooded * facepalm*
- Yeah, we went there.
- Hurting Hero: Post-Heel Face Turn.
- I Am Not Left-Handed: When it seems he's lost to his opponent in "Zuko Alone". Then he starts Firebending.
- I Am Not My Father: In Season 3.
- Important Haircut: When declared a traitor to the Fire Nation at the beginning of season 2.
- Inadequate Inheritor: Only for being an essentially decent person and not a sadistic monster.
- Ineffectual Loner
- In the Hood: Combined with his eyes makes him look like Anakin Skywalker.
- King Incognito: season 2.
- Knight in Sour Armor
- The Lancer: When he becomes part of Team Avatar.
- Large Ham: Though, less and less as the story continues.
- Licked By The Sky Bison
- Lightning Bruiser: It pretty much runs in the Fire Nation royal family.
- Lonely Rich Kid
- Loved I Not Honor More: Mai is pissed that he runs off in the middle of the night to 'fulfill his destiny.
- Love Martyr
- Luke, I Am Your Father: "Your mother's grandfather was Avatar Roku!"
- Magic Knight: He's about equally good(as in, nigh-unequaled at sixteen) with firebending and swordsmanship, in a world where benders generally are too arrogant to bother with secondary fighting styles.
- Mad Dictators Handsome Son: More Horrifically Abused Son, as he doesn't defect for love--in fact, his Heel Face Turn interferes with his relationship with Mai (until her Heel Face Turn). But it still boils down to "Screw you, Dad! I'mma join the heroes!"
- Mark of Shame: That big thing over his eye.
- My Name Is Zuko! Son of Ursa and Fire Lord Ozai! Prince of the Fire Nation and heir to the throne!
- Momma's Boy: Adored his mom. Asking what happened to her is his last line in the original series.
- Mood Swinger
- Mr. Fanservice: The infamous shirtless Agni Kai in the third episode. Lampshaded in the beach episode with a flock of birds.
- My Greatest Failure: Originally, he believed it to be failing in his father's eyes and being banished. Eventually, he realizes that it was betraying Iroh in Ba Sing Se.
- Nerd in Evil's Helmet: He genuinely is good-looking and a true Badass, and he's skilled at fighting, giving orders, and anything that doesn't involve social interaction. But sit down and have a conversation with the guy and you'll discover his Adorkable side pretty quickly.
- Nice to the Waiter: In Book Two and onward.
- No Good Deed Goes Unpunished: "Zuko Alone" and "The Storm" are the most notable.
- Not So Different: Two fold, one with Aang as they're both boys with a troubled past and lots of pressure put on them despite coming from different sides. And Azula where both worked to make their own way and try to get the respect of their father. It was just he was more morally grounded.
- Noble Demon: Character development for him in Season 1. He goes from burning down the Kyoshi Warrior's village in his pursuit of Aang to abandoning a later pursuit to keep his soldiers safe.
- The One Guy: When hanging out with Mai, Azula and Ty Lee.
- The Only One Allowed to Defeat You: Since the Avatar is his only shot at restoring his honor, he's not about to let anyone else take him in.
- Perpetual Frowner: "I'm never happy."
- Playing with Fire
- Poor Communication Kills: A lot of The Promise's plot relies on Zuko's poor communication skills.
- Pretty Boy: In a flashback at age thirteen.
- Raven Hair, Ivory Skin
- Red Oni, Blue Oni: Red to his sister's blue, though it's reversed after her Villainous Breakdown.
- The red to Aang's blue (during their training).
- Redemption Quest
- Replacement Goldfish: For Iroh's son Lu Ten. However, Iroh loves Zuko just the way he is and doesn't try to mold him in Lu Ten's image. And since Iroh is Zuko's Parental Substitute, it works out.
- Royal Brat: Interestingly despite being banished he acts like one but unfortunately for his ego, no one treats him with the respect he feels he is entitled too. Learns An Aesop in the Whole-Episode Flashback but he still has shades of it.
- Although in this case, Zuko has a good reason. He only started acting like a royal brat after his "lesson on respect" from his father--the flashback implies he was more upbeat and cheerful and not interested in being put up on a pedestal. Which makes sense: given his banishment came because he wasn't showing due respect to his father, respect would become a big deal in his mind.
- Royals Who Actually Do Something: Enforced upon him by Ozai but he already eager to learn how to be one of these.
- Reformed but Rejected: For one episode... or four with Katara.
- Scars Are Forever: Lampshaded in the series.
- Scarily Competent Tracker: Lampshaded later, as when Aang goes missing, everyone looks to him.
- Sixth Ranger
- Smite Me Oh Mighty Smiter: Complete with rain and yelling at the sky.
- Speech Impediment: He has a distinct lisp that gets less pronounced as the series progresses, but never really goes away.
"It's like a thilver thandwich!"
- Stranger in a Familiar Land: Returning home to the Fire Nation in the beginning of season 3 was everything he hoped for and yet he was still angry.
- Supporting Leader
- Taking the Bullet: Rather, lightning, for Katara.
- Tall, Dark and Handsome: Though only taller than his peers, adults tower over him.
- Tall, Dark and Snarky
- Team Dad: Especially in the comics.
- Teens Are Short: A bit Fridge Logic-inducing because he appears about a head shorter than average-sized men, but tall enough around the other Gaang members and Iroh to indicate that he should be at least the same height as said average-sized men.
- Took a Level In Badass: Remember in the first episode of Book: Earth, when he wasn't even able to land a hit on Azula? After seeing the dragons Ran and Shaw with Aang, his firebending went up to par with Azula's, holding his own pretty well until he takes a lightning bolt shot at Katara.
- Actually most of it took place when he was on his own in Book 2, by the finale he's pretty much on par with Aang, Azula and Katara and he actually has the upper hand on Aang a few times.
- Troubled but Cute
- The Unfavorite: To his father, at least.
- Used to Be a Sweet Kid: The day his mother left was the day things got bad for Zuko....
- Victorious Childhood Friend: Mai's had a crush on him since they were small.
- Villain Ball Magnet: Season 2 through the first half of Season 3. Whenever he tries to do something good, it goes horribly wrong and paints him as a villain once again. Case in point: accidentally burning Toph's feet when she was the only member of the Gaang to trust him.
- This happens again in The Promise.
- Warrior Prince
- Warrior Therapist: Plays The Lancer to Sokka and Katara when they need to sort out their problems (after Aang does the same to him) but the brand of therapy he gives to Katara skirted the line of a Poisonous Friend (albeit unintentionally). Mocked when Toph points out that everyone else got to go on a life-changing field trip with Zuko, grabs his arm, and proceeds to take him for a walk-and-talk... and he tells her that they need to focus on finding Aang.
- "Well Done, Son" Guy: Earning his father's approval is his driving force. Later on it's his uncle's.
- What Would Uncle Iroh Do ?
- The Worf Effect
- Worthy Opponent
Voiced by: Mako (original), Greg Baldwin (after Mako's death)
"Sick of tea?! That's like being sick of breathing!"
Zuko's and Azula's uncle and Ozai's brother, Iroh was once the heir to the Fire Nation throne a mighty general known as the Dragon Of the West. After the death of his beloved son Lu Ten, Iroh lost his thirst for conquest and retired. Afterwards, Iroh came to think of Zuko as his own son. When Zuko was exiled, Iroh went along with him to mentor and protect him. While he tends to act very silly most of the time, he is actually one of the most capable of the cast, and likely a match for Ozai himself. Also the Grand Master of the Order of the White Lotus.
- Acrofatic: Season 1 and 2
- Anti-Villain: Type IV. He’s everything Ozai is not.
- Badass Beard: From Season 2 onwards.
- Badass Grandpa: Still a powerful Firebender well into old age, enough so that Zuko tried to get him to challenge Ozai when Aang disappeared.
- Big Good: Of the order of the White Lotus.
- Breakout Character
- Breath Weapon: "Did I ever tell you how I got the nickname Dragon of the West?" While he's not the only Firebender who can do this, this is his signature move.
- Bunny Ears Lawyer: He is one of the greatest Firebenders in the world and the leader of an organization of Badass Grandpas who have all dedicated their lives to mastering their art/fighting style. He would much rather drink tea and play Paisho.
- Cain and Abel: Abel To Ozai's Cain, though the two never fought directly. When he was given the chance, Iroh declined, as it was Aang's job.
- The Caretaker: To Zuko.
- Chivalrous Pervert: "I didn't see you get immobilised by the tongue..." "Shhh."
- To elaborate, Nyla, June's animal companion has a tongue with neurotoxins that can paralyze anything that it licks. After a scuffle with Team Avatar, they tricked Nyla into hitting Zuko and June and Iroh "fell" on top of June, despite not getting hit. Zuko then comments.
- Cincinnatus: Of the 'does not want power' type. He'd much rather run a tea shop and let his nephew run the nation.
- Cool Old Guy: Friendly, funny, kick ass, and plays a mean game of pai-sho.
- Cool Uncle: To Zuko, specifically.
- Cultured Badass: Not only can he kick your ass in the battle arena, he can kick it in Paisho and tea brewing!
- Dead Soldier Son: Inverted. It's implied that if his son hadn't been killed in the Battle of Ba Sing Se, Iroh would've been a different person rather than the cheery, yet tragic Cool Old Guy. Not necessarily evil, but he definitely would've been a powerful, feared Fire Lord after the victory.
"Leaves from the vine...falling so slow..."
- Death Faked for You: Protected the dragons from being exterminated by pretending to kill the last of them himself.
- Dirty Old Man: More of a chivalrous version, however.
- Drink Order: Tea.
- Eccentric Mentor: He's obsessed with tea, acts goofy, and is so casual you'd think he didn't know there was a war going on, yet he's the key to Zuko's character development and helps along Aang's and Toph's too.
- Eyes of Gold
- Foreshadowing: His White Lotus tile may not have seemed important when brought up during Book One, until you later find out about the Order of the White Lotus.
- Generation Xerox: He more closely resembles his genocidal grandfather Sozin than his lanky father. There is double irony there, given that Iroh is far less of an asshole than Sozin was, and that he was his father's favorite (rather than Ozai, who resembled Azulon the most).
- Grandpa What Massive Hotness You Have: That scene in "Sokka's Master." Dare you deny it?
- Heel Face Turn: Subverted, as he was pretty much always a good guy. He just stuck with the Fire Nation to protect/guide Zuko. He showed his True Colors when he learned of Zhao's plans for the moon.
Iroh: "Zhao, whatever you do to that spirit, I'll unleash on you ten-fold! Let it go now!"
- Though given he was the Fire Nation's greatest asset once upon a time, it can be safely assumed he had one offscreen, most likely when Lu Ten died.
- Hotblooded Sideburns: In Season 1.
- I Just Want to Be Normal: Even after kicking ass throughout the series, the man just wants his tea shop back.
- Let's Get Dangerous: Most of the time he leaves the fighting to Zuko, but occasionally he demonstrates how he earned the title "Dragon Of The West".
- Lightning Bruiser: Family trait.
- Like a Son to Me: This is how he percieves Zuko. Zuko eventually feels the same way.
- Mysterious Past: We just know the footnote version.
- Names to Run Away From Really Fast: The Dragon of the West.
- Obfuscating Stupidity: Admit it, at first glance he looks like a slovenly Dirty Old Man. You'd never know he's The grand master of a club for Cool Old Guys.
- Then, when imprisoned under the Fire Nation, he pretends to have gone mad and weak to cover up his exercise activities.
- Older Sidekick: Old enough to be Zuko's dad.
- Old Master
- One-Man Army: The prison warden calls him out on this when he breaks out of prison during the eclipse.
- The Other Darrin: Following his death, Mako was replaced by Greg Baldwin, who many feel did a great job in the role. Greg being a self-taught Mako understudy, that would be his job.
- Papa Wolf: Normally let's Zuko handle things, but just to be safe, leave the kid alone.
- Parental Substitute: To Zuko.
- Prisons Are Gymnasiums: During Iroh's time imprisoned, his did double as a gym so the trope above could occur. A before/after comparison appears as the image for this trope itself!
- Prophecy Twist: He once had a vision that he would conquer Ba Sing Se, and his attempt to do so cost his son's life. He is destined to conquer it, but only to save it from the Fire Nation.
- Retired Badass: Retired pre-series, after penetrating the impenetrable city of Ba-Sing-Se.
- Shock and Awe: One of the only three Firebenders we ever see shooting lightning, although we don't get to see him use it in combat.
- Smart People Play Pai-sho
- Spot of Tea: Asian variation.
- Static Character: Justified in that he already had his development in the past. Now he helps others along in their Character Development.
- Supporting Leader: He leads the White Lotus.
- Trademark Favorite Drink: See above.
- Voice Actor Existence Failure: Averted in regards to the role. Mako passed away between the second and third seasons, but luckily Greg Baldwin took up Iroh's character.
- Warrior Therapist: Odd in that he doesn't fight at the same time. He'll sit you down and talk over your problems with tea.
Voiced by: Grey DeLisle
"My own mother thought I was a monster... She was right, of course, but it still hurt."
Zuko's younger sister and princess of the Fire Nation. As a Firebending prodigy, her father Ozai favored her over Zuko, though the two had an opposite relationship to their mother Ursa. Azula uses her position and power to torment Zuko and anyone else in her way. A skilled tactician, master manipulator, and brilliant fighter, she's easily one of the Gaang's deadliest foes. She describes herself as "a people person," but she really is only skilled in manipulating people through fear. Normal interaction eludes and bewilders her more often than not.
- Arrogant Kung Fu Guy: She has this opinion of herself but her interactions with opponents are more psychological.
- Ax Crazy: Keeps it in check for most of the series, but lets it all loose during her Villainous Breakdown.
- Badass: Competes with Toph for the most Badbutt on the show.
- The Baroness: sexpot variety.
- Be Careful What You Wish For/The Chains of Commanding: When Ozai gives her the title of Fire Lord when he ascends to Phoenix King, Azula is initially pleased at the authority she now wields... But the burden of being supreme leader starts eating at her sanity, her becoming more paranoid and psychotic as the days pass. By the time Zuko and Katara show up to face her in the grand finale, she's a total wreck emotionally.
- Berserk Button: Never imply that she is less than perfect. Also, if you want to die in a painful and humiliating manner, say Zuko is better than her in any context.
- Big Bad: Season 2 and most of 3, with Ozai functioning as the Bigger Bad.
- Broken Ace: She's held as The Ace throughout the Fire Nation for being a Firebending prodigy and a master planner and manipulator, at the age of 14. She, however has serious issues with perfection, and she gets even more broken in Book 3.
- Cain and Abel: Cain To Zuko's Abel.
- Card-Carrying Villain:
"My own mother thought I was a monster... She was right, of course, but it still hurt."
- While this was played for psychosis and self loathing in the finale, when first brought up it was in a "history will overlook that unsavory aspect of me" sense.
- The Chessmaster: At only 14 years old, she comes up with a plan that successfully conquers a city that had remained standing for a century.
- Consummate Liar: "I am a four hundred foot tall purple platypus bear with pink horns and silver wings."
Toph: Okay, I admit, you're good.
- Control Freak
- The Corrupter: She uses her manipulation to pull Zuko away from his Heel Face Turn despite Iroh's attempts to pull him the other way.
- Creepy Child: When she was about 10 years old.
- Cry for the Devil/Sympathy for the Devil: During her Villainous Breakdown. Word of God even points out in the episode commentary that Zuko and Katara have only pity for her upon her defeat, not joy or satisfaction.
- Daddy's Girl: Favored by her father and generally a good (for manipulative villains) relationship.
- Daddy's Little Villain: Just as cruel as Ozai.
- Dangerously Genre Savvy: One example: Immediately trading her useless Red Shirt for a Quirky Miniboss Squad that achieved results.
- Dangerously-Short Skirt: In the Beach Episode, but the only "fighting" she ever does is by playing volleyball.
- Dark Action Girl: She's powerful, she's brutal and she's vicious.
- Deadpan Snarker
- The Determinator: To the point of lightning-bending (a technique that requires clarity of mind) in the middle of her Villainous Breakdown.
- Did You Just Punch Out Cthulhu?: Managing to kill Aang while he was in the Avatar State.
- The Dragon
- Dragon-in-Chief: For most of the series she looks more threatening than her own father.
- Dragon Lady: Though less ethnically offensive than many other Dragon Ladies, as pretty much everyone in the series is a fantasy Asian or Inuit, and there are plenty of other Asian-esque women and girls who aren't Dragon Ladies.
- The Dreaded: Even Iroh fears being in the hands of Azula.
- Dude, Where's My Respect?: Her Villainous Breakdown was partly brought about by Azula recieving this from her father. "You can't treat me like this. You can't treat me like Zuko!"
- Early-Bird Cameo: In the flashback showing how Zuko got his scar, she can be seen in the crowd near Iroh and Zhao looking disturbingly pleased. Also, during Katara's opening narration Azula is the firebender.
- Evil Cannot Comprehend Good: Can't understand why her mother would love despite her cruel personality, or why Mai would betray her for Zuko or Ty Lee to follow after Mai had been captured.
- Evil Is Burning Hot
- Eviler Than Thou: To Long Feng, at least in screen time and supplemental works. All in all, she seems to had been a more humane ruler, which is saying something.
- Eyes of Gold
- For the Evulz: She just enjoys messing with people. Especially Zuko. If she can do something, she will go the extra mile to screw with somebody while doing it. She is considerate like that.
- The Fighting Narcissist
- Foot Focus: Is shown enjoying a foot massage in her spa before her coronation in the final episode.
- Four-Temperament Ensemble: The Choleric
- Freudian Excuse: An unloved (to her) mother and a unpleasable, emotional abusive Father.
- Hero-Killer: Literally...though Aang got better.
- Hot Girls Are Bitches: Holy crap, are they ever...
- Ignored Epiphany: During "The Beach"; after realizing she can't interact with other teens in a regular setting, helping her comrades work through their various nuerotic traits, and admitting to some Mommy Issues, her final course of action is to shrug it off and give people more reason to believe the worst in her.
- Inferiority Superiority Complex: She's basically a coldblooded Asuka with the Attention Whore aspects replaced with manipulation and strong-arm tactics to ascertain worship from her peers. It doesn't play out that much better.
- Ink Suit Actor: She looks alot like Grey DeLisle, down to her hair colour and lipstick.
- Kick the Dog: Frequently and potently. Azula doesn't merely kick the dog, she field-goals it into orbit.
- Knight of Cerebus: Her first major appearance brought in a whole new villain competency level, as well as ensuring Book 2 exhibited the show's Darkest Hour.
- Lack of Empathy
- Large Ham: "The Beach"
- Laser-Guided Karma: Karma served in the fact that the master manipulator who spent two seasons playing mind games to ultimately suffer a mental breakdown set off by the specific reason of NOT being able to manipulate effectively.
- Also Hoist By Her Own Petard, to an extent. If Azula hadn't set Mai and Zuko up on that date, then Zuko would have stayed in the Earth Kingdom, which would mean no Firebending teacher for Aang and no Heel Face Turn for Mai, Ty Lee, or perhaps even Zuko--no betrayal by her friends, no Sanity Slippage.
- Lightning Bruiser: If nothing else, she shares this with her brother and uncle.
- Manipulative Bitch: She is capable of manipulate even to his own father until some point.
- Meaningful Name / Punny Name: "Azul" is Spanish for the "blue", which is the default color of her flames when firebending.
- Mommy Issues: Azula has this idea about her mother which is not really accurate. It revolves around the word "monster".
- No Good Deed Goes Unpunished: See above
- No Guy Wants an Amazon:
Azula: "For some reason, when I meet boys, they act as if I'm going to do something horrible to them."
- Her scary Large Ham tendencies around boys don't help her cause.
- No Social Skills: Word of God says that until The Beach episode, Azula seems evil, but perfect. But in a social setting, away from battle, she can't function.
- Not So Different: With Zuko as both worked hard to make their way and try to gain the respect of their father. She was just more ruthless about it.
- Not So Innocent Smile: When she was younger.
- Offscreen Teleportation: She seems to have this ability, using it mostly as an escape move, most obvious in "The Chase" and "The Drill".
- Omnicidal Maniac: She was the one who suggested the "burn the earth kingdom to the ground" plan.
- Overlord, Jr.: She is her father's daughter and looking forward to taking his title for herself.
- The Perfectionist: See that little lock of hair dangling over her forehead in her character picture? "One hair out of place" while practicing Lightning bending and she gets worked up over it.
- The Plan: Azula is fond of using plans to achieve her ends. Many of them are based on what her mark is invested in and would reliably do.
- The Power of Friendship: What eventually defeated her.
- Pragmatic Villainy: She never kills or harms when diplomacy and sweet words are enough and plays very, very dirty.
- Psycho Electro: Especially after her Villainous Breakdown
- Psychotic Smirk
- Puppet King: She was made Fire Lord by Ozai...who immediately made the title pointless when he crowned himself Phoenix King. Azula took this very badly.
- Royals Who Actually Do Something: Like all the Fire Nation royalty, she is a One-Man Army waiting to happen. When Ozai "rewards" her with a meaningless position, she quickly starts losing her grip on reality.
- Sacrificed Basic Skill for Awesome Training: See No Social Skills.
- Scarily Competent Tracker: Goes hand-in-hand with being a Dangerously Genre Savvy Magnificent Bitch. There's only one episode where we see her tracking skills, but it's clear she knows what she's doing.
- Self-Made Man: Of a sort. She's certainly privileged and naturally talented but Azula believes in doing her own dirty work. Her greatest achievements are things she did through determination, guile and brass tacks power.
- Self Proclaimed Liar: See Consumate Liar.
- She Is the King/God Save Us From the Queen: Type III. The title of Fire Lord is unisex.
- Slipknot Ponytail
- Smug Super: Being a firebender with The Gift and lightening bending is just one reason she thinks she's better than everyone.
- The Social Expert: Plays everyone from her brother to foreign officials like fiddles. Until her Villainous Breakdown, at least.
- Strong Family Resemblance: She looks exactly like her mother Ursa, especially when she has her hair down.
- Tall, Dark and Bishoujo
- Teens Are Monsters
- Terms of Endangerment: "Zuzu!"
- Tragic Villain
- True Companions: Mai and Ty Lee, the only ones she actually trust and what send her to the deep end when they betrayed her. Fear is, in fact, not a good way to make friends.
- Unusually Uninteresting Sight: In Universe and Fanon, seems to take with stride that a 14 year old girl with other two teens managed to take Ba Sing Se, a city that the greatest generals in the Fire Nation couldn't conquer (including Iroh with dozens of thousands of soldiers and 600 days) in a 100-year war, bring down a dynasty, destroy the greatest dictatorship in the Verse so far, command the absolute loyalty of the Dai Li and literally permanently cripple the Earth Kingdom (capturing the 5 generals), quite likely ending the war. And she did this in less than a month while pretty much making it up as she went.
- The Unfavourite: Word of God says she perceives herself to be this when it comes to her mother.
- The Vamp: Though she apparently does it without realizing it. The one time she tried to seduce someone, she failed miserably.
- Villainous Breakdown: Leading to...
- Wake Up Call Boss: Although Zuko improved over the series he was not the same level of threat even with a troupe of soldiers in Book 1 to Aang as Azula was alone season 2.
- We Can Rule Together: She actually tried this as a pick-up line on a guy at a party. She also used this on Zuko, and was one of the few occasions where it worked.
- "Well Done, Daughter" Gal: Not just to her father, but to her mother as well. She sought the approval of both parents by being cruel to others due to what Ozai taught her. While Ozai was pleased with the result, at least up til the point where this even meant she'd lie to him, Ursa got worried about her daughter's mental instability. And she mistook that for Ursa's fearing her as a monster.
- What Could Have Been: She and Toph were both originally planned as boys.
- Worf Had the Flu: Azula was virtually unbeatable when she was on her game. It took her brain breaking for Katara to bring her down. Her sanity slippage gave Zuko an advantage, which he noted before their Agni Kai began. After a certain point Katara doesn't even try to attack the crazed and comet-powered girl, instead waiting until she could disable Azula by chaining her up.
- Yandere: You'd be suprised. When her slight Les Yay moments with Mai and Ty Lee and her creepy Incest Subtext with Zuko are taken into account along with her Villainous Breakdown, her behaviour in the finale begins to resemble this trope. Which makes the whole thing even harder to watch.
- Younger Than They Look: Yep. She's fourteen.
Voiced by: Cricket Leigh
Daughter of very high class Fire Nation nobles, Mai was constantly forced by her parents to be quiet in order to keep up appearances. As a result, Mai finds no enjoyment in anything other than her childhood crush Zuko. As an expert with throwing blades, Mai was recruited by her old friend Azula to help her in her schemes. Although she does have a soft spot for Zuko, she's so apathetic to everything that she doesn't care about being Azula's soldier. At least, that's what Azula thought.
- Aloof Big Sister
- Anti-Villain: Type I, Probably Type IV considering the circumstances of her following of Azula.
- Badass Normal: She throws knives at a team of benders.
- Birds of a Feather: With Zuko of course.
- Broken Bird
- Charles Atlas Superpower: While turning her back on Azula at the Boiling Rock, she managed to consistently pin several guards onto solid metal architecture, using the same knives with which she attacks everything and everyone else. More passively, she's on even footing with the average elite bender, such as Early-Season-Two Katara and half the Terra Team sent to attack The Drill.
- Cool Big Sis: To Azula and Ty Lee to a certain degree.
- Dark Action Girl: Subverted in "The Boiling Rock", where she undergoes a Heel Face Turn and becomes a heroic Action Girl.
- Deadpan Snarker
- Defrosting Ice Queen
- Did You Think I Can't Feel?: Towards Zuko in "The Beach."
- Eerie Pale-Skinned Brunette
- Emo Teen: "That gloomy girl who sighs a lot?"
- Emotionless Girl: Everything is monotone.
- Eyes of Gold
Zuko:"I like it when you express yourself." or "You're so beautiful when you hate the world."
- Fingerless Gloves
- Flechette Storm
- Four-Temperament Ensemble: The Phlegmatic
- Goth: Apparently, part of her appeal to Zuko.
- Gray Oni: To Ty Lee's Pink Oni.
- Heel Face Turn
- Hidden Depths
- Hime Cut: An Ojou has to look nice after all.
- Jerk with a Heart of Gold
- Kick the Dog: In her first appearance, she turns down a hostage deal for her own infant brother. Notably, her Fan Haters took this and rolled with it, saying that anyone who would do that could not believably pull a Heel Face Turn.
- Knife Nut
- Knife Outline: Since this is a kid's show, this is really the only way she can take people out. She apparently throws knives strong enough to cause grown men to fly backwards and still have enough momentum to get stuck in an iron wall.
- Lady of War
- Lonely Rich Kid: Assumed to be the case by Azula.
- Love Redeems
- Machiavelli Was Wrong: "I love Zuko more than I fear you."
- Morality Pet: To Zuko in The Promise.
- New Old Flame
- The Ojou: Daughter of nobility.
- Perpetual Frowner
- Pretty in Mink
- The Quiet One
- Raven Hair, Ivory Skin
- Rich Bitch: Somewhat, in the beginning.
- Shiny Midnight Black
- Single Woman Seeks Good Man: One would think that she falls under All Girls Want Bad Boys for dating Zuko. The simple truth is that she only puts up with him after he gets over his anger issues.
- The Snark Knight
- The Stoic
"You want me to express myself? LEAVE ME ALONE!"
- Sugar and Ice Personality
- Sweet Tooth: She loves fruit tarts. With rose petals on top. Also probably used as an Unusual Euphemism to indicate that her relationship with Zuko has aspects that are not acceptable to portray on a Y/Y7-rated show.
- Tall, Dark, Bishoujo and Snarky
- Tomboy and Girly Girl: Tomboy to Ty Lee's Girly Girl.
- The Unfavorite: Implied.
- Victorious Childhood Friend
- Victory Is Boring: Trope Namer
- Violently Protective Girlfriend: Saving Zuko in "Boiling Rock".
- Woman Scorned: Acted quite a bit like one when Zuko dumps her via a written note before doing his Heel Face Turn.
- Yamato Nadeshiko: She seems to be too apathetic and snarky for the role at first, but later shows the core of steel perfectly.
- Your Makeup Is Running: Has this happen at one point.
- You Shall Not Pass: Covers Zuko escape from the Boling Rock. She lives through it.
Voiced by: Olivia Hack
"My aura has never been pinker!"
Daughter of Fire Nation nobles, Ty Lee made an effort to distinguish herself from her six identical sisters. After joining a circus, Ty Lee was forcefully recruited by her childhood friend Azula. Although she's an expert martial artist able to stop bending by striking pressure points, she's more interested in doing handstands and being girly than doing villain work. Nonetheless, she's easily cowed by Azula, making her a loyal, if very quirky, minion. At least, that's what Azula and Ty Lee herself thought.
- Affably Evil: Not only is she nice to her enemies she flirts with them.
- Ambiguously Gay: Ty Lee shows unusual interest in Azula, which goes almost to the point of obsession. On Ember Island, several boys took interest in Ty Lee on the beach, to which she was completely oblivious and preferred the company of Azula.
- Probably not, due to the fact that Ty Lee was being swarmed by the boys, who were obviously only after one thing and it was making her uncomfortable being backed into a corner with a bunch of strangers ogling her like a piece of meat. Ty Lee may be The Ditz and a Cloudcuckoolander, but she's smart enough to know what those guys wanted from her.
- This is also somewhat trumped by the brief interest she took in Sokka. But if anything, this would imply bisexuality.
- Anti-Villain: Type I, probably Type IV considering she followed Azula out of fear, and she is rather friendly either way.
- Attention Whore: Most likely as a result of having six identical sisters and not having the attention she wanted as a child. This is also why she ran away to the Fire Nation circus.
- Aura Vision: Though it's really more a take-my-word-for-it thing; the viewers never get to see it.
- Badass Adorable
- Badass Normal: Benders dread fighting her because of her talent at stopping their bending ability. When you can chuck tornadoes, tsunamis, fire balls or earthquakes and you're afraid of a girl poking you, you know she has to be a total badass.
- Bare Your Midriff
- Boobs of Steel
- Beware the Nice Ones: Azula learns this the hard way.
- Braids of Action
- Buxom Is Better: Out of all the attractive ladies on the beach, she was the most popular.
- Charles Atlas Superpower
- Circus Brat
- Crouching Moron, Hidden Badass: Arguably the most badass non-bender in the series, along with Mai. (Sorry Suki.)
- Dangerously-Short Skirt: In the Beach Episode, with the same volleyball scenario as Azula from above. This borders on Getting Crap Past the Radar.
- Dark Action Girl: A lot nicer than most Dark Action Girls, though. Subverted as of "The Boiling Rock" when she undergoes a Heel Face Turn and becomes a heroic Action Girl.
- Dark Chick
- The Ditz
- The Dreaded: For any bender who has fought and got their powers shut off. In one episode, Katara mentioned how downright terrifying it was even recalling her first experience being chi-blocked. Apparently, her abilities are so scary that all the main characters who can bend are more concerned with distancing themselves or outright avoiding her, including Aang when he was dealing with the drill.
- Four-Temperament Ensemble: The Sanguine
- Friendly Enemy: She's quite flirtatious with Sokka.
- Genki Girl: Energetic and perky.
- Good Costume Switch: Joins the Kyoshi Warriors.
- Good Feels Good: She loved entertaining people at the circus, and then she stopped Azula before she could attack Mai.
- Gray Eyes
- Heel Face Turn
- Hello, Nurse!
- I Want My Beloved to Be Happy: Just look at the expression she has after her final fight with Suki and looks at Sokka. Her face says it all.
- Machiavelli Was Wrong: Looks like her loyalty to Mai (and ultimately, Zuko) mattered more to her than Azula did.
- Mage Killer: Her pressure points can shut down bending making her the ideal person to fight benders.
- Ms. Fanservice: Lampshaded in "The Beach", where some guys see her lying on the beach and picture her doing sexy poses.
- One Woman Army: Took out an elite team of earthbenders by herself.
- The Paralyzer: She can (temporarily) disable bending ability, designating her as the anti-bender combatant.
- Perky Female Minion
- Pink Oni: To Mai's Gray Oni.
- The Runaway: To join the circus.
- She Fu: Justified as she was a circus performer.
- She's Got Legs: As shown in the Beach Episode.
- Shout-Out: Her fighting style is very similar to Hinata Hyuga's.
- Single Woman Seeks Good Man: Doesn't give a damn about any of the Fire Nation beach boys drooling over her, and instead develops a crush on Plucky Comic Relief Sokka.
- Stalker with a Crush: To Sokka.
- Stepford Smiler: At least some of her attitude is a ruse to keep Azula happy.
- Tomboy and Girly Girl: Girly Girl to Mai's Tomboy.
- Valley Girl: As Mai is the Avatar world's version of a Goth, the creators describe Ty Lee as this.
- Yes Woman: To Azula, if only because she's terrified of her. When she turns on Azula, Ty Lee was just as surprised as everyone else.
Fire Lord Ozai
Voiced by: Mark Hamill
Ruler of the Fire Nation and likely the most powerful Firebender on the planet, Ozai is the main antagonist of the series. A ruthless warlord and megalomaniac, Ozai is willing to burn the rest of the world to the ground so he can rule. He has little to no empathy for anyone, including his own children (though he's acts decent towards them if they prove themselves useful.) Aang must defeat Ozai before Ozai can harness Sozin's Comet and use it to end the war once and for all. After crowning himself Phoenix King and trying to annihilate the Earth Kingdom with the Comet's power, Ozai was defeated by Aang, relieved of his Firebending, and left to rot in a prison cell.
- Abusive Father: You see that scar on Zuko's face? That's just the most visible mark.
- Ambition Is Evil
- Authority Equals Asskicking: Does it ever. The only benders in the world who have a chance of beating him in a straight fight are Aang and Iroh, meaning that Ozai is at worst the third most powerful bender in the world. Though that's a moot point after he loses his bending.
- Beard of Evil
- Badass: See Authority Equals Asskicking.
- Bigger Bad: Leader of the bad guys, but he gets almost no screen time until...
- Big Bad: ...the four episode finale.But his influence in the story makes him the main villain for the series.
- Brought Down to Normal
- Cain and Abel: Cain To Iroh's Abel, though they never fought directly. Ozai preferred machinations when dealing with his brother.
- The Chessmaster: Like his daughter, he's a very capable strategist and manipulator. Unlike his daughter, he's usually too Drunk on the Dark Side to use it, and generally prefers to just set his problems on fire.
- It appears as though he is flexing his Chessmaster abilities in The Promise.
- Classic Villain: Representing Pride and Ambition.
- Despotism Justifies the Means: He wants to rule the world in his own name, not as the ruler of the Fire Nation, so he promotes his daughter to Fire Lord and declares himself the Phoenix King.
- The Determinator: He refuses to give up, even still referring to himself as the "Phoenix King", after losing his powers.
- Drunk on the Dark Side: Just read his quote.
- Equal Opportunity Evil: Quite evil, but no one can say he's a sexist. Favors his (also evil) daughter over his son, has no problem with women serving in the Fire Nation military, and has no issue with making his aforementioned daughter the Fire Lord.
- Evil Cannot Comprehend Good
- Evil Is Burning Hot
- Evil Overlord
- Evil Mentor: To Zuko in The Promise.
- The Evil Prince: In flashbacks.
- Eyes of Gold
- The Faceless: In Seasons 1-2.
- Fate Worse Than Death: At least to him.
- Faux Affably Evil: When he's not being abusive, he sounds civil, but in a cold and not-really-empathic way. He tells people what he thinks they want to hear, so long as what they want is to stay on his good side.
- Freudian Excuse: It's implied he was The Unfavorite to Azulon. Considering he did the exact same thing to Zuko but worse, this gets him no points whatsoever.
- A God Am I:
- God-Emperor: Makes a claim at this towards the end with the new position of "Phoenix King".
- Hannibal Lecture: Toward Zuko in The Promise.
- Hot Dad
- Humiliation Conga: Brought Down to Normal, mocked by teenagers and left living on the mercy of the son he abused.
- Inferiority Superiority Complex: Heavily hinted in his relationship with his brother, in his own personal search of admiration and respect and lately in his Villainous Breakdown.
- Kill It with Fire
- Knight of Cerebus
- Large Ham: In the series finale as The Phoenix King!
- Manipulative Bastard: Plays on Zuko's emotions right until the kid Calling the Old Man Out.
- He's manipulating Zuko yet again in The Promise.
- Might Makes Right: Firmly believes that the Fire Lord's will is right by way of being the Fire Lord.
- Misery Builds Character: He believes hardly in this as way of upbringing to his children.
- Necessarily Evil: According to him in The Promise to govern a empire like the Fire Nation.
- Nice Job Fixing It, Villain: He tried to smash Aang's earth shield only to hit the chakra that Azula had blocked, opening it, and immediately gets his ass kicked.
- Offing the Offspring: Was planning on doing this to Zuko when he was about 8-10 to appease his father. Attempted to do it again when Zuko announced his intentions to join the Avatar to help him defeat him.
- Oh Crap He actually has his first moment of panic even before this when it looks like Aang is going to redirect his lightning right back at him. He doesn't use lightning for the fight after this. He didn't take it well when Zuko threw his lightning back, either.
- Omnicidal Maniac: His Evil Plan in the finale was to wipe out the other two nations.
- Orcus on His Throne: Strategically justified.
- Parent Service
- Pet the Dog: Rescues a young Zuko from drowning after a tide sweeps him into the middle of the ocean.
- Prepare to Die: A rare, terrifying example: it helps that he waited until he had a solid claim to winning.
"You're weak -- just like the rest of your people! They did not deserve to exist in this world -- in my world! Prepare to join them! Prepare to DIE!!!"
- Pretty Boy
- Psycho Electro
- Psychopathic Manchild: Type C.
- Psychotic Smirk
- The Social Darwinist: "You're weak, just like the rest of your people! They did not deserve to exist in this world!"
- The Sociopath: In case you're wondering where Azula got it.... He's remorseless, totally lacking in empathy, manipulative, grandiose and perpetually angry with a sense of charisma about him.
- Tall, Dark and Handsome: When ultimately revealed, he's not a monstrous or scarred figure but a rather sleek and handsome looking man. This only adds to his menace.
- Ultimate Evil: Of the Avatar storyline. He's depicted as an almost satanic figure, usually swathed in darkness, accentuating his Spikes of Villainy with flames in the background.
- The Unfettered: Nothing checks his ambition.
- The Unfavourite: Implied.
- Used to Be a Sweet Kid
- Villainous Breakdown: Occurs during his final battle with Aang. During the opening of the battle he's smug and confident, but after Aang achieves the Avatar State Ozai is visibly terrified. And after he loses his bending, he's left a pathetic shell of his former self.
- Villains Never Lie: He's the only character who gives exposition on Ursa's fate. He's taken at his word by both Zuko and the audience, even though Ozai was blatantly trying manipulate Zuko at the time. (This may be because the story matches up with hints from Azula.)
Voiced by: Jen Cohn
"That's what moms are like -- if you mess with their babies, they're gonna bite you back."
Even as Ozai's wife, Ursa was a caring mother to their children. (Though she had considerable problems dealing with Azula.) She was one of the few people who consistently supported Zuko, and it came as a hard blow to him when she suddenly disappeared.
The reason for her disappearance was part of a deal with her husband Ozai: in exchange for not killing Zuko, Ursa would kill Fire Lord Azulon and make it so Ozai could take the throne. Though Ozai claims that she is now banished, it's unknown what finally happened to her.
- Beware the Nice Ones: See the above spoiler. Not surprising consider the rest of her family.
- The Exile
- Eyes of Gold
- Hot Mom
- Mama Bear
- Meaningful Name: Ursa is Latin for "bear."
- Missing Mom
- The Ojou: Princess really, but doesn't appear to have much authority.
- What Happened to the Mouse?: They had a scene storyboarded for her return in the finale, but it got cut, thanks to Executive Meddling according to Mike and Bryan.
- Uncanny Family Resemblance: She resembles Avatar Roku's bride in the flashbacks.
- Yamato Nadeshiko: The Fire Nation is more or less Japan with fire power and she is a demure and gentle mother who murdered her father-in-law to save her son.
Voiced by: Jason Isaacs
"I had a pupil once who had no interest in learning discipline. He was only concerned with the power of fire - how he could use it to destroy his opponents and wipe out the obstacles in his path." -Jeong Jeong
The power-hungry and glory-seeking Admiral of the Fire Nation. With his greater resources and army, he served as Zuko's rival to capture Aang in the first season. However, he considered the capture of the Avatar to be a minor project compared to his dream of KILLING THE MOON! While he did succeed, his actions were quickly undone by Yue, and he was killed by the vengeful Ocean Spirit.
- Arc Villain
- Arrogant Kung Fu Guy
- Berserk Button: "I dunno why, but I thought you'd be better than Zuko!"
- Big Bad Ensemble: For the 1st season with Zuko.
- Cowboy Bebop at His Computer: His trading card released during the first season premier claimed he was the one who gave Zuko his scar.
- Deceptive Disciple: See his quote.
- Did You Just Punch Out Cthulhu?: His dream in life is to kill the moon. Which in the Avatar universe is a sentient being. And he technically succeeded.
- Broke Your Arm Punching Out Cthulhu: Never considered the enviromental and spiritual consequences of killing the moon. It's a vengeful ocean spirit coming to wreck his shit.
- Embarrassing Rescue: Subverted. Chooses death over rescue at Zuko's hands, not that he likely would have survived after that anyway.
- Evil Versus Evil: He's constantly fighting with Zuko for the prize of Aang.
- Face Death with Dignity
- Fake American: The character is obviously not American, but Jason Isaacs puts on a fake American accent while playing him. This is likely to avoid Unfortunate Implications by having the main unsympathetic Fire Nation officer speak with a British accent as opposed to Zuko's American one.
- Fatal Flaw: Pride.
- Fate Worse Than Death: He considers being rescued by the disgraced Prince Zuko to be this and allows himself to be dragged to a watery death by the Ocean Spirit. In The Legend of Korra, it's revealed that he is imprisoned in a hellish realm called the Fog of Lost Souls where one is forced to endure all of one's worst memories for eternity. When we see him, he's walking through the fog, repeating "I am Zhao the Conqueror, the Moon Slayer, I will capture the Avatar" over and over again.
- A God Am I: He's convinced the moon-killing thing is his destiny.
- While technically not from the show, the movie helped prove this trope.
- Glory Hound: Just listen to the speech he gives after capturing Aang; its 'I am great' over and over again.
- Hate Sink: Has none of Zuko’s redeeming qualities, but has the same goal.
- Hoist by His Own Petard: While killing the Moon Spirit would make water benders helpless, It has a protective mate in the Ocean Spirit.
- Hotblooded Sideburns
- Jerkass: Pick a scene, any scene, he will be a jerk in it.
- Karmic Death
- Kill It with Fire: Almost a Pyromaniac.
- Large Ham: "They will call me Zhao the conqueror! Zhao the moonslayer! ZHAO THE INVINCIBLE!"
- Orwellian Editor: Implied. Zhao learned about the Moon Spirit from Wah Shi Tong's library. Said library had an entire section burned down because it contained information that could hurt the Fire Nation. And since Zhao was confirmed to be there...
- Pick on Someone Your Own Size
- The Rival: To Zuko.
- Smug Snake: Smart, powerful and capable certainly but not so much as he says/thinks he is and this is demonstrated in the third episode.
- Starter Villain
- Too Dumb to Live: Well, he did kill a force of nature. Like that's ever been a good idea.
"I've heard about you. They say you're good at what you do. And even better at keeping secrets. The Avatar is alive. I want you to find him. And end him." - Zuko
A mysterious assasin hired by Zuko to hunt down and kill the Avatar. Relentless in his pursuit of Aang and seemingly unstoppable, he uses a unique form of Firebending by shooting laser beams that cause Stuff Blowing Up. Also known as Sparky Sparky Boom Man.
- Achilles Heel: Getting hit in the tattoo on his head screws up the flow of chi which creates his explosions, causing them to blow up in his face ( or worse).
- Appropriated Appellation: Both of his names were made up by Sokka for the sake of identification. Combustion Man never actually hears them and it's unknown what he actually calls himself. Zuko apparently know his real name, but never gets a chance to say it.
- Artificial Limbs: Word of God is that he blew off his natural limbs by accident while experimenting with his powers.
- Attack Its Weak Point: Indirectly subverted. While he is twice foiled by things hitting his tattoo, both times were completely unintentional and the gaang never actually figured out how to stop him.
- Bald of Evil: Although he clearly shaves it to be that way.
- Beard of Evil
- Evil Counterpart/Shadow Archetype: The art book reveals he was intended as one of these to Aang.
- Everyone Calls Him "Barkeep": His real name is never revealed, and the Gaang actually refers to him as Sparky Sparky Boom Man, then Combustion Man.
- Fan Nickname: Sparky Sparky Boom Man, which originated in-universe.
- Fluffy the Terrible: See above.
- Having a Blast
- Hero-Killer: Though not the same extent as Azula.
- Hoist by His Own Petard
- Implacable Man: He can be stopped by hitting the tattoo on his head, but its only temporary.
- Killed Off for Real
- Made of Explodium: The basis of his power. A beam issues forth from his Third Eye, it pops like a firecracker a few times en route to its target, and then *KABOOM*
- Mysterious Mercenary Pursuer
- Names to Run Away From Really Fast/No Name Given
- Professional Killer: See his quote. Good enough to go after the avatar.
- Red Right Hand: His tattoo.
- Scarily Competent Tracker: Even moreso than Zuko, and without some tracking method like June's shirshu (the interceptor buzzard was helpful though), which really is saying something.
- Something Person
- The Spook
- Tattooed Crook: He fires his beams from an eye tattoo on his forehead.
- Third Eye
- Villain Ball/Irrevocable Order: Continues trying to kill Aang even when Zuko calls the hit off and offers him double to stop. Word of God is that he realized that Ozai could pay him more than Zuko could hope to.
- The Voiceless: Nothing aside some grunts when he's mad.
Fire Lord Sozin
Voiced by: Ron Perlman
"I've been thinking. We should share this prosperity with the rest of the world. In our hands is the most successful empire in history. It's time we expanded it."
Sozin is the man responsible for the destruction of the Air Nomads, father to Azulon, grandfather to Iroh and Ozai and great-grandfather to Zuko, Azula and Lu Ten (Iroh's son). As Fire Lord during Roku's era, Sozin plotted to take over the world as a way of sharing the Fire Nation's prosperity with everyone. Knowing that the Avatar would oppose his plans, he used the power of a passing comet to launch a devastating first strike on the Air Nomads, wiping them out (except Aang, who he missed) and leaving him free to wage a one hundred year war. Although he is now long dead, his comet will return to allow Ozai to do the same for the rest of the world. Also once close friends with Avatar Roku, ever since they were children. However, the two became distant due to Roku's duties as the Avatar and Sozin's plans for conquest, and Sozin betrayed him as soon as he had the chance.
- Ambition Is Evil: Especially when it leads you to leave your former best friend to die.
- Bait the Dog: Right before he begins his plans for conquest, he's personally helping to save his citizens from an erupting volcano.
- Be All My Sins Remembered: Thinks this near the end.
- Big Bad Friend
- Creepy Monotone
- Death by Irony: He started off as a nationalist that wanted to "share Fire Nation prosperity" with the world. By the end of his life, not only did he regret ever acting upon his ambitions, but he realized all too late that he couldn't do a damn thing to change it. It's a healthy dose of irony, karma and a rather tragic finish to what could've been a great leader (morally speaking).
- Dragon Rider: Though according to Zuko, he's the one who started the tradition of hunting them for sport; by the time of the series, they are all extinct or so Zuko thinks, which seems ungrateful of him.
- Evil Former Friend
- Evil Plan: To Take Over the World. He didn't think it was evil at first and his descendents all continue carrying out this plan. Ozai almost succeeded.
- Eyes of Gold
- Karma Houdini: Subverted, rather surprisingly. He doesn't physically suffer for his actions, but he ultimately comes to realize that he crossed the Moral Event Horizon, betrayed his best friend and wasted his life on a wild goose chase to find the next Avatar. At the end of his life, Sozin dies a rather somber man, unable to enjoy his success or attempt to undo the damage he's done. The world let Sozin off, but his conscience didn't.
- Posthumous Character: We learned of his backstory through a flashback-like episode, particularly by word-of-mouth from Roku and Zuko's history scrolls. Azula pitched in on the basics of Sozin's impact on the world at the beginning, too.
- Predecessor Villain
- Redemption Equals Death: Averted. He came to regret many of his decisons, but never got a chance at redemption.
- Royals Who Actually Do Something: Despite having had a falling out with Roku years before, he was still willing to help him save Fire Nation citizens from an erupting volcano.
- Utopia Justifies the Means: Actually ends up being an aversion, as he realized his utopia wasn't worth what he'd done to try and create it.
- Was It Really Worth It?: At the end of his life, he decides that no, it really wasn't. Too bad his descendants didn't take a hint.
- We Can Rule Together: To Roku.
- Well-Intentioned Extremist: As illustrated by his quote.
- White Man's Burden: Essentially what he's trying to do to the world. While his descendants weren't as interested in helping the world, they continued to preach this as propaganda.
Fire Lord Azulon
Voiced by: Walker Edmiston
"You dare suggest I betray Iroh? My first born? Directly after the demise of his only beloved son? I think Iroh has suffered enough. But you, your punishment has scarcely begun!"
Azulon was the Fire Lord before Ozai, son of Sozin, father to Iroh and Ozai and grandfather to Zuko, Azula and Lu Ten (Iroh's son). Famed for his military prowess and skill at firebending, he ruled the Fire Nation with an iron grip. He was a man with little warmth in him, sentencing men to death with a stunning callousness. Ozai seemed to have had as strained a relationship with him as he did with his own son, always seeking to earn his favour but always being met with scorn. After Ozai tried his patience one time too many, making an inappropriate bid for the throne, Azulon ordered Zuko's death, to teach his son a lesson in humility (not that it would have worked, considering Ozai was more than happy to do so). He died shortly after giving that order, making way for Ozai to succeed him as Fire Lord.
- Abusive Father: Heavily implied that he was like that with Ozai.
- Asshole Victim: All signs point to Azulon not being a very nice person. Word of God and background material show him as ruling the Fire Nation with an iron fist and carrying out the war against the other nations with brutality only matched by Ozai. Of particular note is the genocide carried out against the Southern Water Tribe's Waterbenders and the raids carried out against said tribes. (These raids eventually resulted in the death of Katara's mother.) Not to mention the fact that he was willing to have his innocent grandson killed just to prove a point to Ozai. Other than possibly Iroh, it's unlikely anyone really missed him when Ozai and Ursa killed him.
- The Coroner Doth Protest Too Much: Blows up at Ozai over a proposal to disown Iroh one night, and dies of old age after naming Ozai his heir by the next morning? How... convenient.
- Even Evil Has Standards: As his quote illustrates, he didn't appreciate Ozai's attempt to use Lu Ten's death to usurp the birthright from Iroh.
- Posthumous Character
- Thicker Than Water: He and Iroh, despite his failure.
- Unreliable Narrator: The only knowledge we have of him and his actions (besides Zuko's memories) comes from two in-universe sources, neither of whom is bound by Villains Never Lie.
Lo and Li
Voiced by: Takayao Fischer
"Azula, we are concerned for you and your well-being!"
Lo and Li are a pair of elderly twins, who serve the Fire Nation Royal Family as Azula's advisors and Firebending mentors, despite not being Firebenders themselves. Every scene of theirs is with Azula.
- Badass Normal: While Lo and Li are never actually seen fighting, it's clear that when you consider the attitude of the Fire Nation royals, being an advisor must mean you're pretty good at what you do. Word of God also states that they were driving the machine in "The Chase", meaning they have some proficiency with machines.
- Creepy Twins: At first. In their last few appearances, they seem to become comic relief.
- Even Evil Has Standards: When Azula started going crazy, they did their best to stop her from going overboard.
- Evil Old Folks: Or at least devout patriots to an evil society.
- Expy: At first, they seem to be Azula's answer to Zuko being with Iroh, but that doesn't come to pass.
- We Were Quite The Lookers: In "The Beach", it's revealed that when they were young, they were quite beautiful.
- Older and Wiser: They are advisors, after all.
- Single-Minded Twins: They're constantly finishing each other's sentences or speaking in unison, and their physical actions often mirror each other.
- Theme Twin Naming: Their names are the exact same, bar a single letter.
- Their names are also completely different, barring a single letter.
- What Happened to the Mouse?: We never do find out what happens to them after one of them is to be banished. It could be assumed that they left together instead of just one, given Azula's insanity at the time.
- Alternatively, they both stayed but just stayed away from each other so Azula wouldn't notice.