“The Blue Spirit” is a great Aang and Zuko episode, as well as a great Admiral Zhao episode as we see how far he’s willing to go to capture the Avatar and that his plan in dealing with the Avatar, is actually pretty smart. Suffice to say, I really enjoyed this episode.
“The Blue Spirit” was directed by Dave Filoni and written by Bryan Konietzko and Michael Dante DiMartino.
The premise of the episode begins with Katara and Sokka sick from the storm that was in the last episode. This leads to Aang seeking out a medicine woman on a cliff. Around this same time Zhao has just taken control of the best Archers in the Fire Nation known as the Yuyan Archers who capture Aang.
The Pros: The Yuyan Archers – These guys are amazing! They were paint over part of their face for cover and are talented enough that they capture Aang without harming him. They are truly the best and I can see why Zhao took them away from Colonel Shinu. They really show that he will go to any lengths to achieve his ends and is smart about it.
Admiral Zhao – Zhao captures Aang in this and gives the villain speech where he promises to torture Aang to the point of near death, but won’t kill him since if he dies it just means another Avatar will be born. Zhao is prideful but has the long term aims of the Fire Nation in mind, which makes him a great opponent. In the end he only loses because the Blue Spirit threatens to kill Aang which helps them escape.
The Blue Spirit/Zuko – The Blue Spirit is Zuko’s way of saving face and stealing the Avatar from Zhao when he learns about the Avatar’s capture and after one of Zhao’s ships tries to hold him for any information he has on the Avatar. He is driven by revenge and the need to prove himself and his alias of the Blue Spirit is really cool. In the end Aang saves him and when Aang mentions all those he has lost we see how guilty Zuko feels about his mission since if he is victorious it will mean the end of the Airbenders and he will have been the one responsible. Zuko is good but conflicted. The final scene with him is his turning away from the emblem of the Fire Nation in shame.
Aang – Aang is driven in this and we see just how good he is and his courage too when he blows down Zhao after Zhao threatens him with near death. We also see Aang’s mercy when he saves Zuko even after the discovery that Zuko was the Blue Spirit after the Blue Spirit had threatened to kill him. Instead of anger or neutralizing Zuko he suggests friendship. This genuine and good nature is part of what makes Aang so compelling. He isn’t perfect, but he is good.
Okay: The Medicine Woman – She is crazy and that’s about it. She suggests frozen frogs to save Katara and Sokka that they are supposed to suck. I wanted to like her but she was just too out there and had a bit to self awareness that she was supposed to be funny. She wasn’t bad at least.
This is an important episode. It is this episode where Zuko truly realizes the crime of what he’s doing. He wants to capture and subject to possible murder and torture an innocent child. He realizes this and also what his people have done. There is so much awareness that we are shown rather than told and it is beautiful. This episode is another example of what makes this show so great.
Final Score: 9.7 / 10.