SDCC 2013: ‘The Legend of Korra’ panel!

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For bender fans the San Diego Comic Con Korra panel is one of the highlights of the convention. Last year team members of Lytherus (specifically me and Mike) waited in line for four hours for Korra and still didn’t get in. Refusing to let that happen again I hit the lines at 5 am for the 11:15 Korra panel, and my early hours paid off.

The panel featured creators Michael Dimartino and Bryan Konietzko and producer Joaquim Dos Santos, along with the main voice actors for Korra (Janet Varney), Mako (David Faustino), and Bolin (P.J. Byrne). The main focus of the whole panel was Book Two, titled ‘Spirits’, which is set to release this September. There was general discussion about the journey the creators needed to go on to take Korra into a battle in the spirit world. Then they surprised the audience by showing the entire first episode of season two!

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The first episode shows life in Republic City now that the Equalists have been qualled. Mako works for the police now, and Korra is hard at work mastering airbending. Poor Bolin is all alone from the original three of the Fire Ferrets, but in typical Bolin fashion he’s working hard not to let him down. Then Korra and her friends (and yes, Mako is still her boyfriend, though it’s a bit rocky) have the opportunity to head back to her home town for a festival. Not long after they arrive they are attacked by an unhappy, aggressive spirit. Everyone tries and fails to stop it, including Korra, her father, and Tenzin, but in the end it was Korra’s uncle who managed to save the day by doing something that looked eerily like spirit bending. Earlier in the episode he was trying to convince Korra to come and learn about the spirit world from him, but Tenzin and Korra’s father adamantly refused. But after the attack Korra’s stubborn streak emerged, and she cut her ties with Tenzin (wounding him deeply in the process) and proceeded to accept the guidance of a new teacher.

To have so much happen in one episode bodes well for the rest of the season. And after the lovely treat the creators gave the audience a hint at what is to come. Most exciting about this was the revelation of the Avatar origin story.Fans are going to get to see how the first Avatar came to be. This news was accompanied by images of his animal companion, a cat-deer, and a few other cool spirit creatures. The panel wrapped up by the creators asking the voice actors general questions about how they got into this line of work and their thoughts on their characters.

All in all it was a most excellent panel. Be sure to check out the attached photo gallery to see a more detailed list of the team working on Book Two, and some image examples of new characters. And FYI, disregard the seemingly odd colors in some of the images, the photos were shot off of a screen and it registered funny on the camera.

September can’t come fast enough!

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