Reviews for 115 - Bato of the Water Tribe
The average grade for this episode is a B. You can submit your own review on our forums.

Qi Chin graded B

Reviewed on: November 7, 2007
This episode focuses on the two protagonists that are just as much main characters as Aang: Katara and Sokka. The episode starts out at a paster pace than others with Aang and Sokka searching for Water Tribe items. It was nice to see Sokka's warrior training and tracking skills couples with a slightly modified Water Tribe theme music (from Katara's waterbending way back in episodes 1 and 2).

Sokka's flashbacks reveal a great deal about what his past was like, that his hopes and dreams were unfulfilled. It also shows how much he has matured since his father left, and it was a good choice to shift the comic relief from Sokka to Iroh for this episode.

The discovery of the ship is a spark of hope that becomes a true flame when Bato appears on scene. His immediate familiarity with the siblings brings back a feeling of home and belonging. But more importantly, it marks the men from the Water Tribe not simply as 'away', but shows that they are in the world, helping the war. It makes the world of Avatar come together and seem like a finite place where people don't just disappear.

In terms of character relations, there is an interesting change: Sokka takes on the role of a big brother, whereas Katara, usually the motherly one, becomes his kid sister. It's an intriguing relation, and a nice change, but it seems to be for this episode only, as Sokka is the clear star of this chapter while otherwise staying as the comic relief character.

A very interesting part was the 'ice'-dodging. It shows a piece of Water Tribe tradition, and lets Sokka and Katara prove themselves as full members of the tribe.

In the meantime, Zuko and Iroh team up with the cliche tough-and-beautiful bounty hunter June to find Aang by tracking down Katara. It's nice to see them revisiting some old locations from the two previous episodes, and Uncle Iroh's wisdom about his future once again makes him shine.

And again, a direct confrontation between the two groups is always a high point in the show, and this episode features some of the best fighting and choreography of the show; it even has two large beasts involved. Aang's and Zuko's fight around the well was also truly spectacular. The ending closes the episode on a sweet note, with everyone making up.

This episode shows that even though the gang has been traveling together for some time now, they still have some trouble truly trusting each other, something that is dealt with in this chapter. Plus, it masterfully combines history, character, action and art into a great mix, and finally lets Aang's companions take the spotlight for once.

Back to overview