This summer, Avatar: The Last Airbender and the series’ sequel, The Legend of Korra, became animated phenomena once again after hitting Netflix. But if the streaming era has taught us anything, it’s that no program is forever, and fans hoping to hold on to the memories may want another option. Nickelodeon has heeded the call.
On Wednesday, the company announced plans for a new steelbook collection of Legend of Korra featuring brand new art from Caleb Thomas, who was handpicked to design covers for the various books after executive producer Bryan Konietzko saw his work on Instagram. The set looks, as all things Avatar tend to, outstanding.
Like previous Blu-ray sets, the new discs come with creator commentaries and all the behind-the-scene looks at various episodes. Nick notes that the collection’s production run will be limited to 10,000 units.
The Legend of Korra was a tonal shift for the Avatar universe. In our own look back at the series, Toussaint Egan noted how the original series made the sequel even more powerful. “While all Avatars share the same spirit and can access past Avatar memories, each one is different from the last, and many of the criticisms of The Legend of Korra boil down to criticisms of Korra, and how she’s different from Aang. Fans fought about the show’s portrayal of an evolving hero when it debuted in 2012, they fought about the show in the years after its finale [...] But the series qualities that naysayers often deride are also the reasons Korra lives up to its predecessor’s legacy: While The Legend of Korra isn’t perfect, it presents Korra as a more consequential Avatar than Aang.”
“I think maybe we knew Korra, as a character and a series, was going to be more challenging for audiences, but that was what felt right to us,” Konietzko told Polygon earlier this year. “It was a deliberate choice to make Korra a very different character from Aang in multiple ways. That provided so many new opportunities with the stories and character dynamics. And it would have only served to water down what was great about Aang’s character if we just made a carbon copy of him with the next Avatar. He’s such a goofy, affable, optimistic kid, so making his successor a stubborn, pugnacious, angsty teenager was bound to put off a lot of people, and I remember plenty of fan reactions to that effect. If I was surprised at anything, it may have been that it seemed like people were less willing to let her make mistakes than they were with Aang. But I didn’t worry about that stuff too much. I am always more concerned with the cumulative impact of a character’s arc.”
Whatever happens to The Legend of Korra on the streaming airwaves, the steelbook is forever. The set arrives to stores on March 11, 2021, but fans can pre-order now.
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