FANDOM


Farm-Fresh balanceYMMVTransmit blueRadarWikEd fancyquotesQuotes • (Emoticon happyFunnyHeartHeartwarmingSilk award star gold 3Awesome) • RefridgeratorFridgeGroupCharactersScript editFanfic RecsSkull0Nightmare FuelRsz 1rsz 2rsz 1shout-out iconShout OutMagnifierPlotGota iconoTear JerkerBug-silkHeadscratchersHelpTriviaWMGFilmRoll-smallRecapRainbowHo YayPhoto linkImage LinksNyan-Cat-OriginalMemesHaiku-wide-iconHaikuLaconic
  • The very first episode. Aang is sleeping bare-chested on the ground over solid ice at the South Pole with nothing more than a pair of thin blankets, in a small tent. In fact for the whole time he's at the poles, he never wears anything other than his regular clothes. How about that? The Avatar gets special exemption from hypothermia!
    • Maybe Airbenders can control air temperatures. Aang NEVER seems cold.
    • It gets pretty cold up in the mountains, you know. He's just used to it.
  • In 1x19 and 1x20 "The Siege of the North", set on the north pole, why do day and night pass normally? On the poles, day and night last several months. This would have serious implications for the Water Tribes defense, as the Fire Nation could simply wait until summer and attack, denying the water tribe any advantage from the moon.
    • Actually, day and night are only long periods during the Summer and Winter months of each pole. They are pretty average otherwise. If Book 1 began in Winter then by the time 1x19 and 1x20 occurred it was probably mid to early spring. Still close enough to winter for the nights to be unusually long, but close enough to the solstice for the roughly 1 month period of constant night to occur. Also, 'north pole' probably isn't literal, as the canal city wouldn't work there seeing as its totally covered in land on the world map.
    • Plus the Avatar world might be flat, so the days would be the same.
      • I would actually say that the Avatar world being flat is the most likely thing. After all, the solar eclipse seems to have happened over the entire planet at once.
      • In the commentary track, the creators handwave this by saying that the events in Omashu must have occurred several hours before or after the other events of Day of Black Sun. They don't flat out say that the world is round, but they seem to reject the flat world interpretation, even if it does simplify things.
      • Re-imaging an entire system just to have a flat world with solar and lunar eclipses wouldn't really simplify things.
        • OTOH Bryke said the map shown in the intro every episode is all there is; no "new world" exists on the other side of the globe. Makes for a pretty small world or an empty hemisphere. Personally, this Troper likes the idea of a flat world better, elephants and turtles optional.
      • We actually see the world being a globe when the 'comet' first arrives.
      • Not to mention that a 'pole' is, by definition, the axis around which a planet rotates. Ergo, the North Pole and the South Pole must be on opposing sides of a spherical planet.
  • How is Aang's staff a "delicate instrument"? It's survived shattering steel (in at least one case, good steel), which was weakened only by being suddenly made cold. And he mostly used it by striking with its side, and sometimes by its end. How is it being used as a nutcracker (striking the nuts with the end like a press or chisel) such a concern?
    • Not to mention, he had to have replaced it at least once--it was rendered useless after his battle with Jet, for example.
      • If memory serves, Toph was using it to crack nuts, and would you really want Toph cracking nuts with you primary weapon, especially when she could just punch the ground and get her own nutcracker? No. And, it's the little kid "It's my stuff, you can't touch it" state of mind.
      • Besides, it set Toph up for her great one-liner:

  "It's not the only delicate instrument around here, Twinkle-Toes!"

  • June and her scent-tracking beast Nyla. In her first appearance Nyla's tracking skills are treated plausibly enough, but when they return in Book 3, Nyla's sensitive nose has apparently been replaced with a scent-based real time GPS system. Just by smelling Aang's glider and pacing in a circle for a few seconds, Nyla is instantly able to determine that Aang no longer physically exists in the world, and by smelling Iroh's sandal, it is immediately able to hone in on his current location and set a direct course for him, without having to find and follow the actual trail Iroh took to get there himself. SCENT DOES NOT WORK THAT WAY.
    • The first appearance shows that Nyla sees a colored trail of scent in the air. Aang being on the lion Turtle solves his problem, while Nyla simply followed Iroh's scent trail to find him. I see nothing wrong.
      • Nyla followed Katara's scent trail, which was perfectly logical. In Book 3, it knows which direction to go to find Iroh without following his actual trail, and knows that Aang can't be found at all without leaving the space of a few yards across, which implies a spiritual power that is completely at odds with its original presentation.
        • The above troper explained it more clearly than I could. Scent is made up of microscopic particles, all the tiny pieces of you that fall off and are left behind wherever you go. So it exists only in places you've physically been to. Nyla following Katara was done right because Zuko and June had to find an old trail of hers and follow it for half the episode to catch up to her. Nyla following Iroh was not done right, because it led them straight to him without finding his trail. Logically, Nyla would have had to follow the only trail of Iroh's scent that was present, that being Zuko's trail, because he was carrying the sandal, back to where he split up with Iroh, and then follow that trail to Iroh, presuming Nyla's nose was good enough to pick up such an old scent. This would have taken them to Iroh, but it would have taken days or weeks because of all the backtracking, not the few hours it took in the show. And Nyla's being able to determine that Aang no longer existed with just a few sniffs is pure horsecrap. The only way this is possible is if Nyla's scent tracking is actually a supernatural power that somehow treats a person's scent like constantly emitted radio waves and her nose a receiver (a Global positioning system, in other words), which is completely the opposite of how it was treated in book one. It should have instead followed "his" trail (the trail of Katara and Sokka carrying the glider to June that is) back to the ocean and then lost the trail because Aang disappeared on an entirely different freakin' continent seperated by a freakin' ocean. You can't track someone's scent over an ocean, the trail gets washed away.
      • It is distantly possible that Nyla was able to find Iroh's scent so quickly because Iroh had conveniently passed through the area on his way to Ba Sing Se; if that were the case, then Nyla would naturally pick up the fresher trail rather than tracking Zuko and the sandal all the way back to the Fire Nation and starting from there. It's admittedly a stretch, but not as big a stretch as the idea that Nyla simply picked up on Iroh's present location. While we're hand-waving, you could also suppose that Jun was exaggerating out of hubris rather than acknowledge that Nyla couldn't find Aang because he hadn't been through their area recently enough to lay a traceable scent trail (although this doesn't explain why Nyla didn't follow the scent left by the glider).
      • Zuko kept Iroh's sandal for Nyla to sniff.
        • No duh. That's not what the complaint was about.
    • Actually something that bugged me about the first appearance is that while tracking Katara's scent via the necklace they went to a location Katara had never been. While it lead to an amusing scene with Miyuki, Only Aang had been there. Katara was back with Sokka.
      • They couldn't have gone back to thank her for assisting in saving their lives, and having an amusing offscreen scene with Miyuki, especially after learning the value of taking breaks when needed? Or that Zuko wanted to confirm with the locals periodically, in case Jun eventually started leading him on a wild goose chase and he had to go back to the last time someone saw a bald kid with an arrow on his head?
    • You guys seem to be missing the most obvious explanation possible for the sake of complications. Iroh has a very strong smell.
    • Is it unreasonable to speculate that maybe Nyla's sensory power is, in fact, partially supernatural in nature?
      • Which would explain why the giant, ancient, energy bending Lion Turtle would disrupt Aang's trail.
  • How is it that the characters are able to stand so close to lava?! The example that bugs me the most is in the 3nd season premiere when Aang sticks his glider and within seconds in bursts into flame. If the lava was that hot, then how was he able to do that while barefoot?
    • For the same reason that they're able to take direct hits from balls of blue-hot fire and barely get singed, leap fifty feet in the air, get boulders hurled at them and get thrown dozens or hundreds of feet without getting worse than bruised. Avatar is Wuxia - the laws of physics are bent as a result.
    • Lava is actually way, way hotter than the series makes it out be. In real life, buildings will spontaneously combust before lava even touches them. It bugged me throughout the entire series. But lava is one of the most-nerfed natural phenoemenons in any action movie/series, probably because of the significant lack of lava in many well-populated areas.
    • There happens to be a trope for that.
    • Maybe lava is colder in the Avatar world.
      • Here is another possible reason, if the Avatar is able to harness all elements then it could be that he would also have a slight resistance against things like heat, cold, and a rock getting bended at him.
    • The Avatar world is basically just so full of Rule of Cool that real life properties just don't fit in enough for any natural elements not to have something magical or mythical involved in the whole process.
  • Toph's blindness and vibration sensing has always been portrayed very inconsistently. Sometimes she appears able to "sense" airborne missles (rocks, fire, Mai's pointy daggers.) a couple of other times she is relatively helpless in certain situations because of her blindness, she has no idea where the sea serpent is when it attacks, cannot cope with (extremely noisy) giant flying insects, and of course in her first appearance is foiled by aang's air bending, that she cannot see to dodge or block. In the balance her blindness rarely poses the issues that it could and should. For instance how often does she accurately punch another characters arm despite the fact that she would only have a general idea of where the arm is in space? Wouldn't she be utterly unable to protect herself if an opponnent tried to punch her in the nose? If she had some sort of 'daredevil sonar' she wouldn't have had any problem in the desert.
    • It's been established that Toph can see anything that is touching the earth. Anything that isn't touching the earth, she is unable to see. When she's blocking rocks and stuff, she's not reacting to the rock as much as she's reacting to the person making a throwing motion at her (In most cases, she's blocking earthbending stances, which she knows enough about). It just so happens that those people tend to be standing on the ground when they do so. How does she block Mai's daggers? Her sense is so refined that she can "see" ants from a good distance away. She can ""see" the knife leaving Mai's sleeve. How does she punch people? She sees their whole bodies. And she could likely dodge a punch so long as the guy's standing on the ground. As for the bugs, she can certainly hear where they are, but by the time she chucks a rock, it moves, and in any possible direction, which she can't predict because it's not touching the ground.
      • So why, in Tales of Ba Sing Se, does Toph claim to have no idea what Katara looks like?
        • Because blind people don't know what anything looks like.
      • So it basically depends on her being able to judge the velocity of objects as they are fired/thrown/bended at her? All right... guess a certain amount of Willing Suspension of Disbelief comes with the territory. Mai was riding a lizard though.
      • The Gaang were running away at that moment. Toph was using her earthbending to launch herself onto Appa. It's entirely possible that avoidng Mai's darts was a lucky cooincidence.
      • You know how a dog will turn away in the direction that you pretend to throw something? It's kind of like that. She sees the person making a motion that is used to hurl things, notices that the person is aiming for her, and puts up a shield in the likely event that the person is throwing something at her. And as I said before, Her sense is so refined that if you're on the ground, and said ground is solid enough that she can feel vibrations, Toph can see you. Full stop.
      • Toph's ability to pick out the direction of someone's arm gestures precisely is explicitly shown while fighting the wasp-vulture critters in "The Desert". Katara gestures at a target, and Toph lifts and launches a rock with extreme precision at the target Katara indicated. So yes, she can follow someone's hand gestures with extreme precision, probably because she views everything from a radically different perspective than most people.
      • Why does the fact that Mai was riding a lizard change anything? The lizard was in contact with the ground, and Mai was in contact with the lizard. Thus Toph can see both of them.
    • I think she's also able to sense rocks and other objects that are airborne because they're made of rock. She's able to detect Mai's knives because they're made of metal, too, and she's developed metalbending. If its airborne but not made of rock, she can't see it.
      • If memory serves, this was confirmed by Toph (or the commentary, i don't remember which) somewhere in Season 3.
        • If you watch the episode "The Blind Bandit", the one that introduces Toph, with the Extras, it specifically says that Toph can sense Earth even if it's in the air. Other objects, not so much. (although she might've been able to avoid Mai's daggers by "seeing" the way she throws them. By doing so, she could have been able to tell where they were going.)
        • In addition to that, this is explicitly stated again in The Runaway. She's able to cheat in the shell game thing because she can sense the rock. The thing which bothers me more is how her "seeing" on wood is treated. In The Painted Lady and the Runaway, she's thrown through a loop because she is forced to stand on wood and she can't see as a result. Then, by The Puppetmaster, she's able to see in Hama's house just fine. That can't even be explained away as feeling the earth beneath the house because a)there was earth beneath the jail cell in The Runaway and b)she was even able to see in Hama's attic.
          • I think there's been a slight misunderstanding. The problem in "The Runaway" was that Toph can't bend wood; it was never indicated that she couldn't see on it. And "The Painted Lady" never states that Toph had any difficulty seeing on wood, or that it was throwing her for a loop.
      • Wood doesn't make her blind so much as it doesn't give her anything to work with. Recall in the desert, she's able to identify a ship from kicking it, saying she hit it hard enough to get a good look. Maybe it has to do with how much earth is in the wood. In "The Painted Lady," the wooden planks are over water, so unlikely to have much dirt on them. Hama's attic, however, might be dirtier.
        • Well, she saw that ship by sensing the sand around it. When she kicked it, the sand around it vibrated but there was a hollow ship-shaped hole in the middle of the vibration. I don't think she saw anything in the wooden jail cell, she didn't really look at anything other than Katara. She probably knew she was running because she heard. As for the other wooden places, I don't know.
          • Wrong. She was effectively blind throughout that whole episode because sand doesn't vibrate, remember? Toph never once said that she can't see on wood, some people just assumed that because of some minor details that were taken the wrong way. The evidence that she can see on wood is much stronger then the evidence that she can't.
          • Wood resonates much more strongly than stone, so I'd assume that any disadvantage posed by not standing on earth would be countered by the fact that she's standing on something that most non-super-blind-earthbenders would be able to pick up at least some vibrations through. Maybe it'd be a little blurrier or something, but it doesn't leave her disoriented and helpless the way that being on sand or in the water or air does.
  • How did The Ember Island Players manage to get black lights for the avatar state effects? I assume its just fire in a metal dishes for the lights normally, but blacklights seem out of place.
    • It was not Black Lights: The lights were off. The paint glowed in the dark.
      • Where did they get glow-in-the-dark paint, then? Is the actress who played Aang now slowly dying of radiation poisoning?
      • They have glow-in-the-dark rocks. Grind 'em up and put them into the paint. Assume that they come in different colors, while you're at it.
      • There are naturally occurring florescent substances that have nothing to do with radiation.
    • Black-light fireflies in a jar. Hey, why not? Plenty of insects can see in the ultraviolet.
  • Why do benders live longer than Muggles?
    • Spirit Magic.
    • They don't. Look at Guru Pathik - he has to be older then Aang's 112 years, if he was "a close personal friend of Monk Gyatso's". Word of God states that longevity in the Avatar world is a result of high chi levels and a connection to nature. Benders are naturally going to be more likely to have a great deal of chi, since that's the source of their abilities, but it's clearly not impossible for a spiritual normal to achieve the same results.
  • In one episode, there was a massive Fire Nation naval blockade - around a "whole continent" iirc. Given the number of ships we see at a random spot around the perimeter, the Fire Nation must have more battleships than people. Also in that episode, one of these ships put on the brakes and audibly ground to a halt to avoid hitting Zuko's ship. To me it's so obviously unrealistic that there must be some weird reason for it.
    • It's called "All Back Emergency". Probably wouldn't stop you as quickly as depicted, but hey, maybe the fire nation has some sort of quick-reverse clutch/gearing arrangement for their propeller shafts? Also, no one said their blockade was perfect; there's probably some people (like the pirates) who make a living running it.
    • If you're referring to the blockade from Book 1, that was specifically ordered by Zhao to keep the Avatar from getting to the Fire Nation uncaptured. Not only was it temporary, it most likely only blocked off a portion of Fire Nation waters - a just large-enough area to ensure that going around would take up far too much time.
  • Some of the things waterbenders can do with their water just makes no sense. Shaping it into a whip to lash someone, fine. Shaping it into a whip to lasso them, fine. I can see them shaping it into a "gel" so dense it doesn't just splash around whatever it's touching. But how the hell do they use water like a blade to cut things? Even metal? Water can cut things by enormous velocity/pressure, but these guys just slice it around like a blade and it somehow cuts clean through things.
    • The same way you can slice things with thin blades of air, I guess.
    • Water jet cutting machinery is capable of slicing into metal and other hard materials, but they always shoot the water in a single, concentrated direction. That said, it might be posible to do this in a curved motion but the velocity and pressure would have to be extrememly high to make up for the lack of concentration.
Community content is available under CC-BY-SA unless otherwise noted.