Why Aang and Katara’s Relationship Had to Be Changed in Avatar the Last Airbender Live-Action

Why Aang and Katara’s Relationship Had to Be Changed in Avatar the Last Airbender Live-Action
Why Aang and Katara’s Relationship Had to Be Changed in Avatar the Last Airbender Live-Action

Netflix’s Avatar: The Last Airbender Live-Action is an immersive and fun series for new and OG fans of Nickelodeon’s Avatar universe. With this live-action doing a great job at being faithful to the source material and in terms of special effects, all that’s left to critique is the story the live-action is telling and how different it is from 2005’s Avatar: The Last Airbender series, which is still popular to this day. One of the major highlights of the animated series that kept fans watching was the friendship and romance between Aang and Katara. 

Aang and Katara meet at the beginning of the animated series and spend the rest of their lives together, working to defeat  Firelord Ozai and free the world from the Fire Nation’s rule. Through several adventures, Aang and Katara grow closer and eventually fall in love. While the animated series showed how genuine their love was from the first season, the live-action doesn’t hint at the upcoming romance between the two characters, instead just portraying them as very close friends who care deeply for each other. Considering it’s a live-action, however, slowing down their romance was a good decision by the show’s writers.

The Difference Between Aang and Katara’s Relationship in the Animated and Live-Action Series

Avatar Katara and Aang’s Relationship 2

The original animated series sees Aang and Katara form a friendship from the first episode of Book One. As time passes, they spend many more episodes getting to know each other as people and benders. Katara even teaches Aang how to water bend, which makes for some heartfelt and cute moments in the animated series. They laugh together, fight, and argue, but they always find their way back to each other. There are also several jealous moments in the animated series when Zuko and Toph join the group, showing how much these two started loving each other as more than just friends early in their story. By the end of the animated series, Aang and Katara share a kiss, cementing their romance as part of their future. In Avatar: The Legend of Korra, it’s revealed that Aang and Katara married and had kids together. 

In Netflix’s Avatar: The Last Airbender live-action, Aang and Katara’s relationship, while still as friendly, doesn’t portray their budding romantic relationship yet. While it’s probably because of the reduced episodes that fans don’t get to see their budding relationship, there are signs that they care about each other. She fights for him from the beginning and it’s their friendship that pulls him back from the Avatar state in the finale episode. The scenes they shared in the animated series, like going into the secret tunnels together, were changed for the Live-action. In the Netflix series, Katara and Sokka go into the tunnels, making it a sibling moment to sort out their issues instead of a romantic walk where Katara and Aang get some alone time. 

Why the Change Was Necessary in the Live-Action

Katara and Aang

Netflix’s Avatar: The Last Airbender had several changes from the original animated series. Some worked while others didn’t. Even though some fans weren’t so happy that Aang and Katara didn’t spend some time lost in the secret tunnels, it was a smart idea by the writers not to move too fast with the romantic storyline between these two characters. While it’s easy to ignore the age difference between Aang and Katara in the animated series, it’s much more noticeable in the live-action. From their height to their interests and mannerisms, it’s obvious that Katara is older than Aang. With the current social climate and how easily a show can be canceled on social media just with an opinion, it’s a good thing the show’s writers didn’t risk putting in any hints of their future romantic relationship so soon.

Another change the live-action is making is adjusting the storylines to accommodate the cast’s aging. Something that wasn’t done in the animated series, which saw Book One to Book Three happen in less than two years. This change will be great for the show because Aang will be noticeably older, and a relationship between him and Katara will be easier for the young actor and actress to portray on screen. Aang and Katara are endgame for the Avatar: The Last Airbender Live-Action series so it’s only a matter of time before viewers see their relationship play out on screen. Here is an explanation of the ending of Netflix’s Avatar: The Last Airbender live-action series.

Watch the live-action Avatar: The Last Airbender live-action on Netflix

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