So no, I don’t have any sob stories about avatar. It didn’t pull me through a rough patch in my life, and it didn’t stop me from committing suicide. It wasn’t the point of inspiration that got me into art, or anime, and it didn’t convince me to take up Northern Shaolin kung fu. But to say Avatar: the Last Airbender hasn’t been important to me would be misguided.
For the past 3 years avatar has been a constant source of happiness to me. I laughed at all the slap stick and subtle humor every character provided. I often sat open mouthed, and sometimes even drooling, when watching particularly amazing fight scenes (120, 220, 303, 315). And I got happiness yelling out in joy every Tuesday at 8 am because it was half way to a new episode. Even in times when I was have Avatar Withdrawal Syndrome symptoms that would get as severe as nightmares, anxiety, and tremors, I still managed to pull comfort from fan fictions and Avatar reruns. My friends and I have debated for weeks on end about the more technical aspects of elemental magic and the science of bending. Debates about tattoo applications and hair styling techniques, contents of mouth foam and the usefulness of Pai Sho tiles. It even got to the point where we discussed the thermodynamic probability of a boiling lake in our advanced chemistry class with my teacher.
And so, I applaud Avatar: the Last Airbender. For all the beautiful backgrounds and beautiful characters. For all the wonderful music, whether it be the Agni Kai background music or “Secret Tunnel”. For all the nights that I rolled around on the floor in pleasure after that especially good episode. All the friends I’ve made, and all the fire flakes that were so spicy they burned my eyes as I pulled them out of the oven. And, for the “friendly” debates that once or twice escalated to the point where punches were thrown (they may have been shipping debates).
But I also applaud you, my fellow Avatards. If you type “Avatar” into the search on deviantart.com you get 377,779 results. You guys are such an amazingly dedicated group of fans. Did year long hiatuses ever make you lose interest? How about filler episodes or never ending shipping wars? I can’t tell you how happy all you cosplayers, fan artist, and fiction writers have made me over the past few years. There have been points where I’ve almost peed myself while reading MiSTs or watching Avatar Stupidity, or the Abridged Series, or even just looking at photoshopped screen shots. So, for all the hard work anyone has ever put into an Animated Music Video, fanfiction, fan art, or research for a debate, I applaud you. I applaud all of my fellow Avatar Fans for all love and passion they have put in to make this one of the best group of fans I have ever seen. Even though the series is now over I’m sure that you will continue on with all the art and cosplays and speculations and that we will continue to keep this fandom alive.
Thank You for everything.