I SHOOT PEOPLE FOR FUN: "Avatar" comic compliments series

The Daily News


“Avatar: The Last Airbender” showed its last episode nearly five years ago but the story was far from over. Nickelodeon, with the help of the show’s creators Michael DiMartino and Bryan Konietzko, have continued this arching story line by releasing a series of comics with the help of Dark Horse Comics.

There are two sets of comics so far. One, “The Promise,” came out in three parts over the course of last year. This year another comic, “The Search,” is also being realized in three parts. The second comic, part two, came out July 10 to an eager audience of casual and hardcore fans alike.

“The Search” deals with one of the biggest mysteries in the “Avatar” universe: what happened to Zuko’s mom? The story was first going to be part of the original show, but then was pulled at the last moment. A made-for-TV movie was also in the works but it did not reach production (something about “Avatar” movies makes Nick a little nervous).

So in place of a movie or the show, we have the comic, which is both good and bad. The good thing about the comics is that we can get more of the characters we love when normally they would have been left behind.

The art seems to be getting better each time a new comic comes out. There is a notable difference between “The Promise” and “The Search,” and it is for the better. The facial expressions are better, the colors sharper and the fight scenes are amazing. This is one part of the comic that should disappoint no one.

Gene Yang, the writer of the comic series, has taken much criticism from the fandom for his writing in both “The Search” and “The Promise.” However it seems that, much like the art, the story improves each time. Unlike “The Promise Part 2,” this comic is more focused on the plot line. In addition to that the story seems to be going at a nice, consistent pace.

As for the content of the story line, opinions diverge. I love the direction that the story is going. I’m aware that many people within the fandom are looking for Yang’s head on a plate, but I think that’s unfounded. The unexpected twists that fans are upset about are the same ones that Konietzko and DiMartino requested and that has been in place long before Yang became involved in the project. As I see it, Yang is not to be blamed at all.

The final part of “The Search” is set to come out in October and should finally answer the question that has been on our minds for so long. As far as new comics go, we should expect that announcement July 20 at San Diego Comic-Con. Yang, Dante Basco (voice of Zuko and General Iroh II) and Sifu Kisu (martial arts consultant for the show) as well as others related to the comic will have a form dedicated to the Avatar Universe. We can only wait and see what is going to happen next.



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