The Legend of Korra/Radar
The creators have claimed that The Legend of Korra will be darker and more mature than its predecessor. Seeing as Avatar: The Last Airbender got plenty of crap past the radar itself, let's see if Bryke has put their money where their mouth is.
"Welcome to Republic City"
- One of the Triple Threat Triads calls Korra "fresh off the boat". Politically incorrect as it is, the lack of profanity is most likely what allowed the term to pass.
- Of course, since she really did just get off a boat...Also it's clear she's from the South or North Pole (due to clothing, appearance, and polar-bear dog), so presumably the only way to get to Republic City from either would be a boat, since flight isn't as common or easy.
"A Leaf in the Wind"
- After the Fire Ferret's first match Bolin goes to Korra to ask her what she thought. Right before she answers, look carefully at Bolin--or rather, his eyes.
"The Spirit of Competition"
- Tahno lacks subtlety in this department:
Tahno (with an extremely suggestive voice): If you'd like to learn how a real pro bends I could give you some private lessons.
- Korra's line to Mako about Asami: "Yeah, but when you're with her you're thinking about me, aren't you?"
- After Bolin catches Mako and Korra kissing, Mako finds him drunk at a bar. On noodles, not actual liquor, but the viewer can put two and two together here.
- The next day he acts hung over, and "loses his noodles."
- It's also worth noting that sake is sometimes served in a bowl.
"And the Winner is..."
- When Korra reveals that Pema told her about Lin, Tenzin mutters "Criminy!" which translates to "For Christ's sake!" (or spirits' sake, in this case).
- The last third of the episode is essentially a terrorist attack, with the heroes trying, and failing, to stop them from getting away.
- The only reason getting electrocuted in the water didn't kill the Krew is the fact that this is a kids' show. The floating bodies in the water did not help.
- Their being the main characters may have had more to do with their surviving, considering this series is supposed to be Darker and Edgier than the original series..
- The (one-sided) Unresolved Sexual Tension between Lin and Tenzin.
Tenzin: Lin, with so much on the line, it would be nice if we could help each other out, at least for one night. (Emphasis added)
Lin: Like old times? (Now she's behaving all Tsundere)
Tenzin: Like old times. (Look at his face)
Lin: Ok, I'll try to be less abrasive than usual. (Emphasis is in the dialogue)
- Lin smashes through the cockpit canopy of a Mecha-Tank with blades on her bracers, which the chi-blocker inside is desperately trying to dodge while trapped in the seat. Such is the power of the attack that the mecha is pushed back into a large steel frame that collapses on top of it, with Lin still utterly destroying the crew cabin. The next shot we see of that now downed Mecha-Tank, Lin's almost done stabbing through it, most of the canopy segments are smashed open, and the rest are discolored as though splashed with something opaque from the inside. We never see what happened to the pilot, but Lin was fighting to kill given the violence of that scene and we can presume it was pretty ugly...
- Korra's Crowning Moment of Funny with the makeup powder in the bathroom. "Powdering one's Nose" is a euphemism for urination.
- Asami having Mako and Bolin live with her can be taken at face value as Innocent Cohabitation, but Asami and Mako are a bit more than friends and that mansion is pretty large. One wonders if they have fruit tart there...
"Out of the Past"
- Bolin trying to pee in his jail cell (you can actually hear the tinkling!) and asking for a little privacy when Lin and Asami appear to bust him and Mako out. Extra points for Lin metalbending his zipper back up afterwards.
- When Tarrlok's evil politician career is over, he claims that he's going to start a new life, with Korra as his hostage. It's not hard to infer that a I Have You Now, My Pretty situation was in mind...
- In "The Revelation", Amon removing bending is eerily reminiscent of public executions.
- It's also highly reminiscent of rape, both being methods of asserting power over someone. Shady Shin's expression and pained gasping as Amon takes his bending away only makes it that much worse.
- At the end of "A Voice in the Night": The Equalists ganging up on Korra, forcing her to the ground, and Amon's mental torture is terrifyingly similar to a rape. Korra's reaction does not help.
- Same goes for when Amon takes away Tahno's bending. Tahno begging Amon not to do it increases the rape vibe.
- Backed up by the state Tahno's in when Korra sees him in "The Aftermath." The bags under his eyes, the straggly-ness of his hair, as he's brought in broken and slumpshouldered into the police station for more questioning.
- The rape imagery continues in "When Extremes Meet" when Tarrlok bloodbends Korra to the ground, knocking her unconscious and then slowly advances on her as her eyes close.
- And then he ties her up and drives her away in the back of a van.
- And locks her up in a basement.
- The laws imposed on non-benders in "When Extremes Meet" reflect many horrible laws used throughout world history to oppress a certain class. With non-benders being deprived of electricity, assumed guilty for simply existing, forced into curfew and arrested for peaceful protest. Even worse is the scene where the police round up the non-benders who are past curfew, which is eerily reminiscent of similar real life mass arrests based on race, or better yet the obvious culprit. They did just about everything except establishing a Prison Camp.
- In the preview for the season finale, Amon seems to have gotten enough power to set up mass-bending-removals that seem creepily like one-at-a-time mass executions.