Oh man, this episode was like a kick in the guts. Literally. Because I just tried to eat half a bowl of mac and cheese, and my stomach is so sore, and then there was that bit where Bolin took the disk to the belly and lost his noodles, and that's exactly what I was feeling.
There seems to be a lot of rage on Tumblr. Not just shipping wank, which is inevitable, but "this is an objectively bad episode with no character development" rage. Which is strange, because here is all the things we learned about our characters:
- Korra's a bit socially backward
- Mako is attracted to Korra, but also Asami, and this confuses him, but his first priority is his brother
- Bolin falls hard and fast, but also recovers equally fast
- He's also an emotional eater, which isn't something you see much in a masculine character
- Korra, despite her spiritual block, is an adept healer
And, finally, in the end Korra takes the first steps towards building a rapport with Asami. (I kind of don't agree with the complaints that they're not instantly BFFs just because they happen to share a common gender, but that's me. I also don't agree with the "Korra has no female friends" line, when she's taking romantic advice from two little girls. I mean, no, she doesn't have any female friends her own age yet, but counting out the kids just because they're kids is one of those things fandom does that annoys me.)
ALSO, apparently it's an Avatar Thing to hear the words "I'm confused" and think it's a call for kisses. (In Aang, this makes him a rapist, in Korra, it makes her a whore. THANKS, FANDOM.) Awkward as it is, I feel like "actually, that's a bad idea" is a lesson that can't be repeated enough to an impressionable audience, because there are whole genres out there that say the opposite. And I really like how this episode resolved with apologies and renewed friendships. And now the awkwardness is out of the way, so we can get on with the important stuff. I'm really glad these subplots weren't dragged out for a whole season.
MEANWHILE, the important thing is that I have a new favourite character. No, not these ladies --
-- although I love them quite a lot and feel like some kind of Rabbiroo cosplay is in order. HERE:
No, not Tahno, though well done, fandom, for falling for the predatory guy in eyeliner. Girl in green behind him on the right, the one who is plainly Mai's great-niece, or a Fire Nation princess slumming it or something. SHE'S AMAZING AND I LOVE HER. (Hey, if the handsome Order of the White Lotus guy who appears for ten seconds in the first episode can have fangirls, SO CAN SHE.)
Anyway, I desperately need some pills and a nap, so I leave you with inkstone's fascinating post on the second chakra, and the wider purpose of this episode.