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Back to the content 'Bendingtime: The 'Deus Ex Machina' thing'
Anonymous comments allowed.
Ok, I'll bite. The finale was disappointing plotwise. Animation was superb, punchy dialogue, shocking scenes, but the story fell quite short of expectations in terms of narrative.
Please stop trying to justify a poor narrative execution.
The episode completely failed to explain any of the following:
How exactly did Noatak become Amon? All Tarrlok said was that his brother looked out for him and wanted him to be treated fairly. How does that translate to "eliminate all bending" Especially when he is a bender himself? What was the drive for his ambitions. Amon's character literally just fell apart.
-How did Tenzin's family get captured?
-How did Korra and Mako take out the chiblockers on the stage so easily? Last time I checked Korra and Mako were easily taken care of by only two chi-blockers quite handily in episode 3. Not to mention the lieutenant single-handedly defeated Bolin and Mako.
-And following that how did Amon lose to Korra? She was an airbender of about literally two seconds and she somehow beats Amon? What? (And don't give me that 'she has going through the forms and practicing'). We all know that practicing for a game is different than the game itself.
-And the love triangle...I don't think I even have to explain that.
-Korra cries...and enters the Avatar state? And Aang gives her bending back?
That's bull, but whatever
-But now all of a sudden she can give it back as well? So then Amon wasn't even a threat in the first place. What was the point?
-It would have been a humbling and growing experience for Korra if she could only air bend only for awhile (and the other elements later)
-And last but not least. What about the real issue of the exploitation and unfair treatment of non-benders? Absolutely no deep critical narrative about that at all.
Oh, and what the f*ck? Season Two Finale of ATLA was the best one. Crossroads of destiny is my favorite episode out of both series.
Whoah, chill out. I was defending the whole 'OMAGAWD DEUS EX DEUS EX ENDING MAKES NO SENSE' ******** that I constantly hear about. I agree, I do think it was a weak(ish) season finale, especially one that concludes the main arc. The narrative was shaky, and not as well as it should've been. And yeah, I'm with you: They left too many things to be explained in the next season (and doing so makes the audience think that they had no idea how else to conclude it).
Most of the questions you asked, agree'd. Shoddy writing led to too many contrived plot points like those, just for the convenience of the story. Except for the love triangle. That didn't push the narrative forward; all it did was make the characters seem like they had depth. Seem, being the key word.
"Korra cries... and enters the Avatar state?" ...that's bull how? Aang helped give her the ability. And if you read what I posted, it wasn't Aang that gave her bending back: it was the avatar state itself (which is something that was shown in flashbacks). That's not so much bad writing as it is leaving the jigsaw pieces on the table, and letting the audience figure it out between eps.
And yeah, Korra being able to fix everything does pretty much undermine the threat of Amon. The threat MAY still have been there if he could permanently remove Korra's bending (meaning the victims would never be cured), but since that wasn't the case... Man, I just gotta add that I hate endings like that. Endings that completely take away the threat.
And I said TLA season 2 finale wasn't a BIG one. The season 1 and 3 endings were climactic, and concluded a story arc within the season. I'm not saying I disliked it at all, I'm just saying that as far as season finale's go, it didn't feel all that "Final". But I GUESS that's subjective...
Goddamn, I'm starting to dislike the finale more and more... damnit, Anon. And look at all these words I wrote! Thumb for you. Log in next time. Pce.
It is a deus ex machina; that is something you will not be able to disprove. They weren't planning for a season 2 so they rushed LOK, which is painfully evident in the plot holes, lack of character development, rushed finale and overall poor planning. I'm not entirely sure you know what a deus ex machina is but basically, they built spent the season building up the threat of Amon, which climaxed at Korra losing her bending. Queue emotional breakdown and the tear that falls of the cliff symbolising Korra's self-perceived death - an emotional low that finally made her spiritual connection kick in (Aang says that only when you are at your lowest point ...).
What sucked, along with the entire threat of Amon being undermined by the deus ex machina as you mentioned, was that I finally felt some real character development when Korra and everyone around her are all like "The Avatar has lost her bending!". It was like, ****, what now? And then two minutes later, "Never mind, here's your bending back." That's a big **** you to the audience and essentially what a deus ex machina is - an external factor resolving a problem with little effort in a way that does not flow with the rest of the text (not the original definition from Greek tragedy but that's essentially what it is). The problem is that Korra didn't have to WORK for her salvation, which makes all the effort in the rest of the season pointless because she was never in any danger because Aang could just come and fix everything for her - i.e. the character is protected by a deus ex machina. This undermines the integrity of the entire "conflict".
That's just the deus ex machina part. There are so many other reasons why LOK was a disappointment, especially since it had so much potential.
They were aware of the second season since mid-last year. That's plenty of time to adjust the story if needed. And a Deus Ex Machina is typically an unexpected external factor, a.k.a, an asspull. Aang restoring her bending (in the ways that I described in the text all the way up there) fits with not only the rules of the show, but with the hints that they dropped. Regardless, it still did flow with the world of Avatar.
A true Deus Ex Machina is the energy bending that was introduced at a convenient time, coming from a giant lionturtle which was scarcely mentioned, which Aang just happened to wander on to. That's an example of an exterior force which comes, for the most part, out of nowhere, to create a resolution based on brand-new rules.
The ending that you described ("Two minutes later, 'Never mind, here's your bending back'"... yep, that is a big "**** you" unfortunately, but that's not a Deus Ex, since it still abides to known rules, without introducing crazy and convenient rules. It was just a rushed resolution, and a cop-out.
amon was trying to gain power like yakon and tarrlok. they all tried in different ways (crime, politics, and rebellion)
most will probably be answered in the next season, as for how Tenzins family got captured... they had just developed airplane technology. nuff said on that one.
also the season was intended to be self sustaining, in case the show wasnt allowed a second season, so they crammed what they could in, and left an ambiguous ending where no one is certain the main villain is dead, and everyone is happy and bending again. i admit, i hate the love triangle, and the lack of character development on most of the main characters, but **** it, im done with you mr anon.
You didn't really expect me to read all that, did you?
I am thinking she was able to air bend and give bending back because of the infinite wisdom that comes from being avatar, while that might be the case I agree with you, that they could have done a significantly better job with the finale.
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