Why is Varrick so amazing this season?!
I’m getting my general praise for Varrick out of the way early, even prior to my regular introduction, because I don’t want to repeat what I’ve already complimented last week and the week before. This week’s episode and the two before it, together, have been Varrick’s best episodes, and while I’ll be discussing some of the character’s specific contributions to the latest episode, readers will have to assume Varrick’s greatness to be concrete, or a constant if you will.
‘Reunion’ is, approximately, the halfway point of Book 4, being the 7th episode of the total 13, and it certainly feels that way while watching. Taking a break from Kuvira, the writers, instead, reunite Korra, Asami, and Mako (and yes, Wu too) for a fun action-adventure set in Republic City, while Varrick and Bolin attempt to traverse an Earth Empire blockade along with a group of water and fire bending fugitives. Also, like Book 3′s own 7th episode ‘Original Airbenders,’ ‘Reunion’ consists primarily of filler material, a feat which seems, naturally, to result in a hit-or-miss scenario.
On the plus side, and it’s a major plus, Team Avatar is back in action, minus Bolin unfortunately, but still alive and well. I had actually forgotten how great it is to see Asami and Mako fighting alongside the Avatar, probably because they’ve taken a backseat to most of the action for about a season and a half now. Both Mako and Asami are awesome, particularly Asami with her impeccable hand-to-hand combat skills and electric glove, but they also function as intelligent, reliable companions to Korra who certainly can’t take credit for what was ultimately a team effort. And that’s what’s satisfying about watching Team Avatar pursue Wu’s captives as a unit this installment. Each member can hold their own in a fight, and yet, there are a lot of challenging situations which require Korra, Mako, and Asami to work together. The best moments of the episode involve the trio fending off expendable foes with methods harkening back to the best of Team Avatar, such as in a thrilling fight sequence in and on top of a train.