Season 1, Episode 9
The Skinny: In which the “skinny” is, in fact, kind of a big fat spoiler that I can’t even ruin way up top here. And so I avoid it like whoa and direct you to the recap below. But guys, I’ll tell you this: If you thought Team Avatar getting arrested and then Korra finding out that Tarrlok is a blood bender right before she gets forcibly removed from Republic City was dramatic, THIS ep was out of control. Also, several of my theories from last week ACTUALLY came true this ep. HOLLA!
Guys, lookit! HE HAS HAIR OF SNAKES.
The Setup: GUYS. SO many things happened last week. Some of them involved Mako, Bolin, and Hoe Cake getting arrested. Some of them involved said trio moving onto Air Temple Island, where Tenzin’s kids promptly flashed their AWESOME. Some of them involved Tarrlok being a shady ass. Some of them involved Korra feeling bummed about her lack of progress in learning her airbending. One of them even involved Mako and Korra having a teensy flirty moment in the car. But the THING that happened last week mostly involved Korra and Tarrlok, who finally laid all the cards on the table and fought each other, a battle that has been brewing, if not for the whole season, then at least the last few eps. Accordingly, their showdown was EPIC, and ended with a revelation about Tarrlok: He’s a MOTHER-CUSSING BLOOD BENDER, who can use his “gift” without a full moon. Which is exactly what he did to Korra when he crippled her with his EVIL for “getting in the way” and threw her in the back of a car and out of town. GUYS. He told the Avatar–the AVATAR!–that she would never see Republic City again. This afer he threw her friends in jail, and is slowly but surely chipping away at Tenzin’s power on the council. THIS GUY. I should have known. He has three ponytails. If that’s not a sure sign of evil…
The Breakdown: So the intro reminds us that–GASP!–the Avatar has been abducted! And basically goes on to describe the battle royale between Korra and Tarrlok, blood bender, sneaky bastard, and all-around meanie. UGH. Still can’t believe how awful he is, except for the times that I TOTALLY ALWAYS KNEW HE WAS BAD.
So we open in a dingy basement, where Korra is being bloodbended down the stairs by Tarrlok. IT IS CREEPY TO THE MAX, and is not made any better when he locks her in a BOX, yo. Not a room, not a cell. A freaking steel box that’s barely bigger than a casket. As Korra is screaming her head off, Tarrlok leaves, and it’s revealed where he has hidden our girl: In an isolated shack waaaay up in the snowy mountains. Dang, guys. He is taking no chances.
Back on Air Temple Island, Tenzin, Pema, and Meelo are sleeping in the same bed. HA! Kids. The phone rings, and Meelo goes to answer it and give the caller the WHAT FOR, reminding said caller–with attitude–that it’s 6 in the morning and this better be GOOD. He’s so hilarious, guys. Tenzin takes the phone and it’s obvious that he’s just heard the news: Korra is gone. BOOM.
BUT. Notice that I didn’t say kidnapped. That’s because Tarrlok is spinning the web of LIES, friends, and plays the victim when Tenzin goes to city hall, where a crime scene photographer is taking pictures of the aftermath of Korra v Tarrlok. Tarrlok is looking weary and fake-innocent while receiving treatment for his wounds. He tells Tenzin how Korra came to him last night to talk about why he arrested her friends. True enough. BUT THEN he takes a sharp left to Liarville and says that EQUALISTS attacked them, he was electrocuted by one of those gloves, and that the EQUALISTS TOOK KORRA after he was knocked out. I CALL SHENANIGANS. But Tenzin believes him, and so does everyone else.
But look at who we have here, just hearing the news and GEARING UP: Beifong, I think still recovering from the battle with Mr. Sato. She goes to bust Hoe Cake, Mako, and Bolin out of jail so that they can help her find Korra and her missing metal benders, who were kidnapped a couple weeks back. Of course, VOM, Mako and Hoe Cake kiss when they see each other. AWKWARD! But then Beifong tells them that Amon kidnapped Korra, and they need to go find her. Guys, Mako is so instantly worried and anxious that if I was Hoe Cake I’d be like, “Now I see,” you know? Don’t worry, though. Beifong brings the funny by HILARIOUSLY using her metal bending to fix Bolin’s fly for him. SERIOUS LOL, guys.
Meanwhile, Korra is still trapped in her steel box, and with all of this time she’s got now, she thinks back on Tenzin’s urge to meditate. So she does. And WHOA. She has another vision of Aang where he and Toph Beifong (Lin’s mom) are talking about an out-of-the ordinary criminal, and they go to arrest a baddie, Yakone. Who kind of looks like Tarrlok to me. He seems like a mobster or something, and he runs his mouth the whole time he’s being arrested. Hmmm…
IRL, Team Beifong goes to Tenzin and they all round up and figure out a place to start looking for Korra down some backstreets of Republic City. Beifong does her metalbender X-ray magic and discovers a tunnel underground. They all are still totally unaware that Tarrlok has told everyone a lie about what happened to Korra, and that they are looking for her in the wrong place. They’re still looking for the Equalists and Amon, not realizing the real bad guy is feeding them some quality BS that only serves HIS anti-equalist vendetta.
So, underground, Team Beifong starts the arduous process of checking the tunnels for some sign of…something. Hoe Cake takes this opportunity to ask Bolin if Mako is ok. He seems really concerned about Korra (FIST PUMP!), she says, and she’s worried about him. She asks Bolin if he thinks Mako likes Korra as more than a friend. Bolin oversells his denial, guys, as he has a tendency to do, and she knows it. Hoe Cake tells him to tell the truth. He does and mentions the kiss Korra and Mako shared. Bolin tries to assure her that it was nothing, but of all the things Hoe Cake may be, let’s be serious: she’s actually awesome. Friendly, generous, fun, brave, and SMART. She knows the kiss was SOMETHING.
This is solely for the purposes of refreshing everyone’s minds….And also to say MOAR OF THIS PLEASE.
Any brooding that might happen is instantly put on hold, though, when some motorcycles enter the tunnel. Team Beifong hides as the motorcycles go through a door in the wall. Beifong against shows her true badass colors by opening the door with her mad skillz. What they find is basically a chi-blocker/equalist garage/transportation center. They over hear some chi-blockers talking about a prison, and figure that Korra is being held there.
When they arrive, Beifong finds her officers, who have already lost their bending, but when Mako asks her about Korra, she says she doesn’t see her. He FLIPS on a guard there and asks where the Avatar is. Mako is about fire bend the guard when he–the guard–tells them that the Avatar isn’t here, and that Equalists didn’t attack City Hall. Tarrlok is LYING. Team Beifong FINALLY realizes that Tarrlok has taken Korra, but not before the alarms in the prison go off, and SHIZZ GOES DOWN. Chi-blockers v Team Beifong on moving train tracks. Beifong saves the day, though.
UGH, guys. This box Korra’s in must SUCK. At least she’s meditating some more, and has another vision of Aang and Yakone, this time at a trial. Turns out Yakone has been ruling the underworld of Republic City with an illegal gift: Blood bending, which he can do at will. His lawyer spins the truth and seems to be making a good case for Yakone. But the council still finds him guilty, and sentences Yakone to life in prison. AND THEN. Guys, HE BLOODBENDS EVERYONE in the courtroom. Even Aang. Vision over. Scary, yo.
Team Beifong goes to City Hall to confront Tarrlok. He’s all, “Y’all crazy!” until his aide tells them the truth: She saw Tarrlok put Korra in the back of that car and send her away. THEN SHE THROWS HIM UNDER THE BUS and reveals that he’s a blood bender. Team Beifong tries to take him down and find out where he’s taken Korra, but he blood bends them all until they pass out and runs away. Guys, he basically does the same thing that Yakone had done in the courtroom in Korra’s vision of Aang. WTF CUT YOUR EVIL HAIR.
Afer they come to, they realize that Tarlok blood bended them all. The new CoP seems to be coming around to the good side and sends the force after Tarrlok, while Team Beifong decides to try and go after him themselves.
Back to Korra’s vision: Yakone is still blood bending the courtroom and uses his skills to escape. Aang tells him that he won’t get away with this, and Yakone says that Republic City is HIS, and that he’ll be back one day to claim it again. Then runs away.
Aang goes all Avatar state on his retreating ass and TAKES HIM THE EFF DOWN. Yakone tries to kill Aang with his blood bending, but CAN’T because Aang goes Avatar state AGAIN and takes away Yakone’s bending. FOR GOOD. Whew.
Back to the dingy basement. Korra and Tarrlok have a chat. Tarrlok’s all pissed that his perfect plan–to rule Republic City like his daddy, Yakone, could not–was ruined by Korra. She tells him that it’s over, but he says, nuh uh. He’s going to run away and start anew, and Korra is going to be his hostage. As he’s leaving, he comes to the top of the stairs and sees…
MOTHER CUSSING AMON. WWWTTTTFFFF!!!!!
Korra hears that Amon is upstairs and understandably looks FREAKED. Meanwhile, Amon tells Tarrlok that it’s time for him to be “equalized.” Tarrlok, being his arrogant self, tells Amon that he’ll NEVER equalize him. Tarrlok blood bends the chi-blockers, who go down right away. But Amon is able to resist it, guys. WHO THE EFF IS THIS GUY?! Tarrlok is ALSO freaked out and asks Amon, “What are you?” “I am the solution,” Amon says. @&*%@! THEN, he TAKES TARRLOK’S BENDING AWAY, and, frankly, Tarrlok looks dead.
But then, DANGER! Amon tells his revived chi-blockers to go get the Avatar, and to electrocute the box to knock her out first. Freaking Tarrlok, putting her in a metal box. They go down to the basement, but Korra is SO FREAKING SMART, guys, and uses her cloth cuffs to block herself from touching the box as they electrocute it. She fakes them out like a PRO. Like the EFFING AVATAR. Of course, she gets away from them.
Outside, she sees Amon putting Tarrlok in the back of a car. They have a staring contest. Korra does some water/ice-bending, and runs off. Amon chases her, but she gets away by bend-skiing down the snowy mountain. And then! JOY!!! NAGA FINDS KORRA and brings her back home. Naga is, no question, the most awesome pet there ever was.
As everyone’s badgering Korra with questions, Mako pushes them all out of the way, picks Korra up in his arms, and carries her to Appa. He tells her that he was so worried about her. She says that she’s glad he’s there. As he’s setting her down, he tells her that she’s safe now, and touches her face. CARESSES IT, guys. Hoe Cake looks heartbroken, and while I was giddy and excited at the Makorra sweetness, I felt bad for her.
The only time Mako smiled this WHOLE EP…
…was while he was doing THIS. I MEAN…
The Last Word: I totally thought that the baddie in Korra’s visions would be Tarrlok’s dad. And I TOTALLY called the way Mako would react to hearing about Korra’s abduction. But guys, I don’t even really care. Because even though I wound up puzzling things out ahead of time, I was still breathless watching. The ACTION is awesome right now.
Also, TWO WEEKS FROM NOW IS THE SEASON FINALE, GUYS. IT IS THE SHOWDOWN. KORRA. AMON. The only time they’ve ever shown a preview, and it looked OUTSTANDING. Although there is still another episode next week, so it could have been a taste of everything left. But still. *bites nails* I CANNOT WAIT.
The Lines: “Crazy talk is coming out of your mouth right now”–Bolin.
I can’t even process questions right now. Please, talk amongst yourselves.