Avatar: The Last Airbender

Season 1 Episode 3

The Southern Air Temple

Aired Friday 6:30 PM Feb 25, 2005 on Nickelodeon

Episode Fan Reviews (108)

out of 10
678 votes
  • Aang, Katara, and Sokka visit the Southern Air Temple, Aang's childhood home where Aang learns some unpleasant things. Elsewhere, Zuko comes across the ambitious Commander Zhao and a confrontation results.

    Things get a little heavy and real for Aang in this episode as he learns that he can't go home again. It's actually an episode that jumps to different emotions throughout, a trend that would become an appreciative occurrence on the show. We get some good feelings and gladness when Aang discovers the lemur Momo, the character that completes the group in this season, sadness and devastation at learning the fate of his friends and mentors, some nostalgia and tragedy from the flashbacks to Aang's childhood, and finally the powerful moment when Aang activates the Avatar statues people throughout the world realize that he is back. It's done well and provides another facet of this so far mostly happy-go-lucky character. Zuko also gets an early rite of passage by confronting this year's other recurring villain Zhao, played with smarmy arrogance by Jason Isaacs. Zhao's a pretty entertaining guy, who often seems too big for his britches as he's frequently knocked down a peg or two throughout the year. This episode is no exception as Zuko takes him one one one, giving a good moment for the disgraced prince while giving us a flavor of this new character. Two very solid, separate plots for this one.
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