Reviews for 213 - The Drill
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
After some true heavy duty drama comes an episode with a focus on action and big effects. While it does nicely balance out the previous episodes, this could also go horribly wrong after the show had served so much deep storyline. This presumption could not be more wrong. While this episode does not have a lot of story (indeed, it only covers a time span of maybe an hour or so), it is still a brilliant piece of work.

The story picks up right where it left off last episode: with a giant Fire Nation drill attacking Ba Sing Se. The close-up shots of the drill are a masterpiece of animation, and it is a great display of the attention to detail prevalent in the show; the mechanisms of the drill are well thought-out and well presented.

In this episode is also the first time we get to see Aang truly earthbend. While it requires some getting used to (just like I'm still not really used to him waterbending), it is nice to see the progress in his abilities. Just as it is nice to have the old cheery Aang back.

Like always in this show, a clash between the two opposing groups is always a great moment. Except that these clashes tend to be getting more and more epic as they occur. Azula's and Aang's fight atop the drill especially is extremely well done, even though Azula's effort noises sound way off.

This episode also once again displays what a great addition to the team Toph is. Not only does she possess awesome earthbending abilities, but her blindness is always a focal point of both jokes and great character moments. Since most of the viewers probably don't have a blind friend, Toph adds a very nice element to the show.

Parallel to the events outside the walls is Jet finding out about Zuko and Iroh being firebenders. The way this happens, with the minute detail of a hot cup of tea, is a good way to initiate this conflict. While it doesn't have any big impact now, Jet's discovery is bound to stir up trouble in the future.

That goes completely against the relaxed and tranquil ending of this episode. After a long travel, the refugees are carted to the inner wall on a train that passes through a very delightful and peaceful scenery. At the same time, after a day of hard work saving the city, the gang retires from the outer wall, ready to head into Ba Sing Se, with the sun setting in the background. With this imagery, all the tension and action during the episode is allowed to fade away, giving the viewers a feeling of peace and calm after the imminent danger has been thwarted.

This episode was very nicely done, and features a nearly complete dramatic arc. We get our conflict to start with, then the build up, the climax, and then a nice resolution. Again, while not heavy in terms of story, there are many interesting tidbits (Iroh and Hope, for instance), as well as some stunning art and music, for we finally get to hear the Avatar theme in all its glory again. 'The Drill' is a solid episode.

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