Legend of Korra: Zhu Li Does the Thing

Legend of Korra: Zhu Li Does the Thing

Varrick develops a conscience while Kuvira prepares her assault on Zaofu in "Enemy at the Gates".

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Really hope Zhu Li's faking it to stop Kuvira from the inside. At this season's so far happily brisk pace, I'd wager we'll find out soon.

bigfatcarp93:
Really hope Zhu Li's faking it to stop Kuvira from the inside. At this season's so far happily brisk pace, I'd wager we'll find out soon.

Thats almost certainly the case. If she was really going to turn against him they would have foreshadowed it.

Well, Kuvira is officially a Saturday morning cartoon villain now, what a waste and another missed opportunity in the Korra villain list. I do have to agree that Suyin is being a coward with the whole "take reigns of the chaos" of the earth kingdom, she was asked to give some control and some focus, not to take full control of the earth nation with a metal fist, and it's not like she doesn't have absolute power in her own city, she could have probably done a lot of good instead of hiding in her iron cocoon and letting Kuvira go full vader without bothering to react.

Kind of sad that if Bolin and Mako go to blows, it's because Bolin has been brainwashed, not because there is a real ideological ambiguous conflict where neither of the brothers can actually claim to be 100% right.

The animation is gorgeous, love Asami's little story corner and Varrik, Shu Li and Bolin completely made the episode for me. REALLY loving Shu Li now tot he point that she could be one of my faves and would love for a bit of romance to pop up between our not Tony Stark and her. Also, needs MOAR LAVABENDING!

castlewise:

bigfatcarp93:
Really hope Zhu Li's faking it to stop Kuvira from the inside. At this season's so far happily brisk pace, I'd wager we'll find out soon.

Thats almost certainly the case. If she was really going to turn against him they would have foreshadowed it.

As I've said in another thread, this episode comes across strongly as the straw that breaks the camels back, with all the goofing up varrick does, and how the majority of it negatively affects Zhu Li.

First things first; I hate mech suits. I hate mech animes. When I see two mechs fighting I immediately lose interest in the fight. So I kind of hoping that there won't be too much of it this season. Second, praise the gods Meelo had about 15 seconds of screen time this week. Third (and this is a big one for me) Does Varrick not realize that Kuvira can't kill him? Seriously, where is she going to find another engineer smart enough to build her weapon and stupid enough to make him/herself an enemy of the world. It's a completely idle threat that she can't carry out simply due to the fact that it would be her far more harm than good. Also, I don't like Kuvira's fiancée. He seems like a spoiled brat just trying to get people to notice him for being him and not the son of Suyin, and that's a pretty boring reason to do anything aside from getting into a job completely different then what people expected you to do. How many times have I seen this character troupe in anime?

Razhem:
Well, Kuvira is officially a Saturday morning cartoon villain now, what a waste and another missed opportunity in the Korra villain list.

Here's the thing though, I don't think that's necessarily the case. Kurvira is being "reasonable" and respecting the wishes of the Avatar by having a truce. Furthermore, if what was said at the end of the episode is true, Suyin is going to break this truce before Korra can talk to her again. Thus, if Suyin attacks first, regardless of Kuvira's earlier actions, Suyin is the aggressor and Kuvira has to fight back to defend herself. Though, admittedly, that was possibly her plan all along (stall until Suyin takes rash action). The villains in Korra have MOSTLY been decent and I think there's more to Kuvira's side that we have yet to see.

OT: Best episode of the season, even if it is kind of skippable. Varrick and Zhu Li alone sold me on this episode. Mech fights: awesome. Lava bending: awesome. Mad science bullshit: awesome. Copious amounts of Varrick: awesome. Can't wait for next week to see where it goes from here.

Decent review, one thing Kuvira said to Bolin on the next train, and Suyin is off to assassinate Kuvira at the end of the episode. Bolin could still be set free for the coming engagement or not and he could be the new Jet.

So my thoughts on the episode:

Kuvira went to return order to Ba Sing Se. She apparently succeeded, and gained the trust of the world leaders to continue her unification of the Earth Kingdom/Empire. But I have to ask, who really maintains the order and control in Ba Sing Se? My answer is the Dai Li. For example in the original series, The Last Airbender, the 'fall' of Ba Sing Se was simply due to the group switching their allegiance to serve Azula as she was the closest to the embodiment of their 'ideal' charismatic and strong leader. And the latter reveals why the Dai Li failed to maintain peace in Ba Sing Se with the death of the Earth Queen, they need the authority of a leader to creep over the walls and on the roofs of Ba Sing Se.

And now with Kuvira, it seems to me that she is expanding the Dai Li to control the entirety of Earth Kingdom/Empire. Not to mention how the Dai Li's re-education camps are nothing new in the avatar universe. Aang encountered those, as did Korra in the previous season.

And the more I think of that, the more I keep finding parallels between Kuvira and Long Feng and Azula. It is almost as if the Kuvira we are presented today is the merger of both Long Feng and Azula.

And as for Kuvira, I found this on her appearances in the previous season: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a2HRFc_BRSg (There are some speculation of her at the end of the video, but it is still a nice summary of her earlier appearances.)

And finally, I kind of have to wonder if Kuvira truly managed to take over Ba Sing Se. What if the Dai Li instead captured Kuvira, and brainwashed her to act and perform as their idealized leader? The Dai Li has already performed a similar feat by brainwashing Jet. This line of thought could enable her to be redeemed later, and also enable Korra to finally put an end to Avatar Kyoshi's greatest mistake, the creation of the Dai Li.

castlewise:

bigfatcarp93:
Really hope Zhu Li's faking it to stop Kuvira from the inside. At this season's so far happily brisk pace, I'd wager we'll find out soon.

Thats almost certainly the case. If she was really going to turn against him they would have foreshadowed it.

It was my first thought when I saw her "betray" Varrick, that it had to be fake.

Besides, she could've ditched him multiple times if she didn't think he was worth staying with. She certainly wouldn't have fought so hard for him otherwise.

If this was a snap, it wasn't that well executed :/

Amazing Mavis:
And the more I think of that, the more I keep finding parallels between Kuvira and Long Feng and Azula. It is almost as if the Kuvira we are presented today is the merger of both Long Feng and Azula.

The creators have actually stated that Kuvira is supposed to be more similar to how Korra was in the beginning of the series. "It's like Korra has to deal with overcoming a version of her past self." - Michael Dante DiMartino
If you are finding a bit of Long Feng and Azula in her, that's only because her role in this story is that of a scarily domineering, strategic, conniving, power hungry leader. There are bound to be similarities when that was the whole character of Azula and Long Feng, at least to a certain extent, since Long Feng wasn't what I'd call scarily domineering as that's more Azula. It may be coincidental or it may be intentional, but either way the creators have been repeatedly emphasizing how similar to a past version of Korra she is. They have not once compared Kuvira to Azula or Long Feng though I'm sure they recognize how she treads a similar path. What caused the creators to mention it in the first place was that a lot of fans commented how she is like Korra used to be: They were ecstatic so many fans picked up on that. I wish I could see them react to your comparison to Azula and Long Feng, especially since they get as giddy about Azula as the fans do, but unfortunately nobody brought it up to them in interviews or fan Q&As they did regarding Book 4.

I don't see the Dai Li being involved by the way. The Book 3 trailer showcased the Dai Li while the Book 4 trailer did not for starters. There have also been no hints about the Dai Li from the creators like they hinted at for Book 3. I also feel the Dai Li would feel really out of place. Don't get me wrong, they totally fit the re-education camp vibe thing, but the Dai Li are a special, sort of ninjaish, security force and Kuvira is too upfront for that. Plus, I doubt the Dai Li would brainwash somebody to be their leader. They follow leaders with charisma that have a domineering attitude and allow them to continue to serve a purpose, especially if it involves corrupt enforcement of something. You don't brainwash someone to act like that; they have to already be like that. The Dai Li brainwashes people to serve them and their leader rather than those they wish to rule over them. It just doesn't make sense to me. Besides, how the heck would Kuvira get captured by the Dai Li? She looks way too skilled for them honestly. Sorry to bash your theory. It just sounds way too far fetched to me. Who knows? Maybe Book 4 will run with that idea and do it well.

Yeah I agreed Zhu Li betrayal could be a fake or legit but even if it is legit, I can still see her coming back to Varrick that is if he can sweet talk/ geniune appricate/ love her to come back to him.

Also did anyone else think Bolin using lavabend against the two mech pliots was somewhat dark? I mean it was still cool seeing him being able to create lava than to redirect it but those two pliots barely make it out of the suit in time!

Lastly I want to what this "thing" is that Varrick is being afraid to be sent to? I take it's a different thing from Peter Patamus thing?

Oh and Asami visiting her father does seen to act like a filler but I'm sure they added that to tie up loose ends given this is the last season of them all.

Windknight:

castlewise:

bigfatcarp93:
Really hope Zhu Li's faking it to stop Kuvira from the inside. At this season's so far happily brisk pace, I'd wager we'll find out soon.

Thats almost certainly the case. If she was really going to turn against him they would have foreshadowed it.

As I've said in another thread, this episode comes across strongly as the straw that breaks the camels back, with all the goofing up varrick does, and how the majority of it negatively affects Zhu Li.

I think half of that her "breaking" might have been just a excuse to rant at Varrick for all the crap he gives her at times and a way to be able to stay around and keep an eye on him. I mean, she went to prison with the guy and still hung around after they broke out. But I guess we'll have to wait and see.

I do find it odd that we spent the previous episode on Korra getting into fighting shape, only to have her avoid actual combat. I'm sure it's going to result in a later "I gave peace a chance, now I'm going to just kick your ass" moment, but still.

It was like watching a movie where someone spends the first act loading their gun, and then spending the second act on peaceful negotiations. I guess I'm just holding out for the shootout.

Last episode, they really seemed to be stressing the "your previous big bads have had good ideas, but gone nuts with them". Kuvira falls clearly into that camp as well. I'm assuming that she will eventually get a peaceful outcome as Korra seems to now believe that simply beating the various baddies hasn't stopped the chain of new ones popping up. I somewhat wonder if we'll see the Earth Republic by the end of the season.

That said, I find it interesting that we could also be building towards Kuvira as another Fire Lord Sozin. She definitely has that whole, "We are the one true path and everyone would benefit by following us" thing down. As Eastern literature often goes for a circular plot arc, it makes me wonder if we will actually end up that route or if Korra will draw that analogy with Kuvira.

 

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