A few days ago at around 4 pm, I noticed that my e-mail and Twitter feed had exploded with notifications about a Legend of Korra Book 2 preview. I followed the link to an IGN page (of course) and feasted my eyes on a video that I’ve been waiting almost a year to see. The Book 2 clip had a lot of interesting information in it – some of which we already knew, a lot of which we didn’t know. The video in itself also had a lot of interesting moments: some Korra-related, some Korra-unrelated. In order to highlight all the interesting moments of our very first Book 2 clip, I wanted to do an analysis on it in order to speculate all that I could from the clip itself.
In the beginning of the video, we’re introduced to Noah and Gabby – arguably two of the worst teen actors I’ve ever seen. They actually give those two actors who play Austin & Ally on Disney Channel a run for their money. Anyways, we get a quick look at them prancing their way around Nickelodeon Studios, in a way that would probably get me arrested, until they reach Mike and Bryan’s cubicle.
Noah makes an interesting first impression: He creeps up on the creators like Gollum from The Lord of the Rings, scares the sh*t out of Mike DiMartino, and then asks him if he makes Korra. Well gee, I don’t know? You’d think the concept art and sketches from Book 2 plastered all over the cubicle would be a dead give away – call me crazy. Mike responds with a “Yes, hello” while Bryan has more of a “WTF are you doing here” expression. Once the awkward confrontation ends, we get our first look at Book 2 – Korra is seen air-punching the ground for a brief second, which results in swirls of wind twisting around her.
Gabby begins to speak and immediately comes across as one of those annoying school girls who say “like” after every three words. “Sssooooooo, like, what’s up with, like, Book 2?” she asks. Bryan responds by talking about how Book 2 introduces a whole new realm for Korra to battle and master. A prime example of this is the Spirit World in itself. Korra will need to master the Spiritual side of being the Avatar and battle out any Spirits who disturb the balance of the physical world.
While Bryan is commentating, we get another look at Book 2 – A Spirit is seen striking the ground, pushing Korra away, and then holding Korra against the side of a short, snowy cliff.
Noah then looks at Gabby and asks “Soooo, what kinds of Spirits will Korra be meeting?” Gabby gives Noah an awkward look basically suggesting, “How the f*ck should I, like, know?” but Mike quickly jumps in to answer the question. Mike explains that the Spirits in Book 2 have the ability to take different forms – there are Creature Spirits and Light & Dark Spirits. When the Creature Spirits are mentioned, we see a glowing ball of ice that strongly resembles the ball of ice Aang was found in during The Last Airbender. The Light & Dark Spirits literally resemble a darker colored Spirit (brown-ish) with a lightly colored aroma around it.
My thought is that these Spirits could be the type that switches between friend and foe. One minute it could be on Korra’s side, the next it could be trying to rip Bolin’s head off.
While Bryan starts napping again, Mike asks the two if they want to see a clip of the Spirits. If you listen closely, you can hear Bryan groaning in the background. Noah responds with a resounding, “I want to check this out!” while Regina George Jr. decides to keep her trap shut for once.
In the beginning of the clip, we see Korra and Mako both fighting off some Spirits with fire bending. I can’t really explain it, but there was something different about the animation in this scene. It didn’t look bad, but you could tell that there was definitely a bit of a change in the animation for Book 2. Korra eventually back flips her way out of the mess and focuses her attention on one Spirit. She then begins to bend water in a circular motion around the Spirit.
One thing I noticed here is that Korra looks a bit different. She seems slimmer, and her features look a bit more prominent – she almost looks more feminine. I personally love the changes; they are subtle, but very enhancing.
Another thing I noticed was that when Korra was bending water around the Spirit, the Spirit began to glow and turn a white-ish color before breaking out of the trance and attacking Korra. My guess is that this is some sort of technique to exploit a weakness Spirits have. I don’t think this was subset to air bending for the simple reason that air bending was not utilized, water bending was. But it’s definitely a topic that will be interesting to find out more about once Book 2 airs.
After the Spirit breaks out of the glowing trance, it attacks Korra, holds her to the ground, and then almost drools on her with its purple saliva. That’s how our preview of Book 2 ended – a small cliff hanger.
The video, on the other hand, ended a little differently…
Gabby yells, “That’s so, like, awesomeeee!” in her annoying school girl voice, Noah gives Mike a high five, and Bryan quickly turns back to his desk and breathes a sigh of relief that the “actors” (major emphasis on the quote-on-quote) are leaving. But wait! There’s still time for one more incredibly stupid, terribly scripted scene!
And no, M. Night Shyamalan did not direct this one.
Gabby explains that she wishes she could air-bend, but Noah displays his laughable, Noah Ringer-like acting ability when he says that it’s not real. Gabby then throws her hands up in the air saying, “Oh well” which cues the camera crew to turn on a few high-powered fans. This basically blows papers all over the cubicle and gets a good reaction out of the creators – Bryan throws his hands up in a WTF fashion and Mike has an expression basically saying, “Get these loonies the f*ck out of here. I don’t even give a sh*t anymore.”
But wait, there’s still more!
“I JUST AIR BENT! WHOOOOOOOOOOO!” says Gabby. Someone get me an Advil.