Avatar: The Last Airbender

Season 1 Episode 8

Winter Solstice (2): Avatar Roku

Aired Friday 6:30 PM Apr 15, 2005 on Nickelodeon
out of 10
User Rating
582 votes

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Episode Summary

Aang learns that he must go to the Fire Nation temple during the winter solstice if he wishes to speak with Avatar Roku to see what he must do. However, with Prince Zuko on his trail while he heads straight into the heart of the nation who wants him captured, he realizes that this isn't going to be an easy task. Will Aang be able to talk to Avatar Roku before Zuko finds him?moreless

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  • Winter Solstice: Avatar Roku

    Winter Solstice: Avatar Roku was a perfect and classic episode of Avatar The Last Airbender as Aang finds out he has little time to defeat Fire Lord Ozai. I thought this episode was very entertaining with it's complex characters, scenarios, and scenery. This episode had a lot of character and plot development as Aang learns what he must do. Zuko tread dangerous territory and showed no fear, though he was captured, he escaped and continues his quest to caputre the Avatar. I really like how the animators, directors, and actors bring the characters to life, have beautiful scenes, and an interesting story with complex components. I look forward to watching the next episode!!!!!!!moreless
  • Aang and the gang make their way to the fire nation to meet with Avatar Roku and Aang finally learns his destiny as the avatar. But is Aang that confident it can be done? And what happens with Zuko, Aang and Zhaou all meet up?moreless

    AMAZING this episode had just about everything that makes it great. At the beginning we had a more than satisfying action scene with Aang getting past the barricade. Then we had a little unexpected twist when the sages attacked Aang. I thought this was a good idea and showed that everyone even the sages are corruppted by the new age, but there is also a sliver of light within that dark age (The one sage who helped). It really emphasizes that you dont need to go with what everyone else thinks and to march to the beat of your own drum. Very nice work there

    Another good part was when Sokka was trying to open the doors. What i like about this show is that its smart and clever. Although Sokka's idea didnt actually work out it was still very thoughtful. We also had the B-plot with Zhao chasing down Zuko. Very smart to follow Zuko and not surprising he captured him too. You can really feel the tention between the two and this episode really gets you wondering if Zhao is really wanting to capture the avatar or just wants him to see Zuko fail. Alot of question there.

    Finally we get to the scene where Aang gets in the gate. Him and Roku have a very important meeting. The only thing i didnt like is that Aang seemed a bit too pouty with the whole complaining about mastering elements in time. Yeah its a rush but your the avatar so deal. And i like that he does later as the series matures with him. The awesome avatar state bending was a more than satisfying ending again. Its amazing to see another avatars bending power thats not Aang. I think this was a very good episode and i love when its on.

    I would love to give this a 10 but its still missing that one thing that really drives me to do it. Still very very good and much better than its first halfmoreless
  • Good everything is good.

    Once again Avatar delivers yet another very good watch. It opened up really well with Katara, Sokka, and Aang penetrating the Fire Nation blockade; the action kept you on the edge of your seat that you can't believe that this isn't a commercial for the summer's best action movie! It was surprisingly well done. And it continued to provide even more quality with the Fire Temple scene with Aang finally being able to talk with Avatar Roku. It felt a bit empty, but how the story unfolded really kept you wanting for more. Plus how Avatar Roku took over Aang's body to defeat the fire nation soldiers was badass.moreless
  • Aang races Zhao and Zuko to the temple for a chance to speak to Avatar Roku.

    This episode is probably one of the best in the first season. At the beginning, Appa is flying the gang through the Fire Nation barricades. While flying, Aang must airbended the flaming rocks hurled at them. Below them, Zuko is fighting his own problems with the barricade. If he enters Fire Nation waters, he will be arrested, but he doesn't care. General Zhao is running the barricades, and allows Zuko to pass through unarrested. He means to follow him to the Avatar. At the temple, Aang and the gang receive help from a fire bender/guardian to open the temple. They are not able to do it without the other guardians, so they set a trap and wait for the them to arrive. They arrive and open the temple thinking Aang is already in it. The group apprehends the guardians, and try to urge Aang to run into the temple. Aang is unable to because Zuko has captured him. When Zhao appears, Aang seizes his chance and runs into the temple before it closes. When the guardians try to open it again, they can't. They say Avatar Roku has closed it and won't allow them to enter, so they wait until he comes out. Avatar Roku advises Aang, then helps him fight off everyone waiting outside the door. Aang, Katara, Sokka, and Zuko leave amidst the confusion and escape Zhao's forces.moreless
  • Alright! The second part to an exciting episode!

    Great episode where Aang tries to get into one of the Fire Nation's sacred temples where Aang can learn about how the Avatar cycle works and how he can understand about it more. Avatar Roku can give out his wise words and knowledge to him, but there s soemthing complex about it. He is only available to see in that temple on the Winter Solstice when the sunlight hits his statue directly spot on through the peep hole in the double doors. When they slip by Fire Nation security, they manage to get in, fortunately Appa didn't get harmed that much by a fire ball burn by ammo rocketing up from the sky by ships on their journey over to the temple. Now, this other part was exciting as Aang learns about the spirit world and communicates with Avatar Roku. This magnificient story ends well. Now more is in store for them! After seeing this episode i was eager to see more episodes to see what happens next!moreless

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (12)

    • This is the first time Aang uses the Avatar State to channel the spirit and become one of the past Avatars.

    • We learn that Aang must master all the four Bending arts before the end of the summer or else he won't be able to defeat the Fire Lord.

    • As of this episode, Aang and his friends have been to each of the four nations.

    • When Zuko questions Zhao following him, Zuko's ponytail is missing.

    • While Sokka nervously comments on being in the Fire Nation, Katara's right bead in her bun is brown like her hair.

    • While Katara is looking over Appa's saddle for the Fire Navy, before Aang urges Appa to go faster, her braid is missing.

    • After Sokka, Aang and Katara turn around to see the fire sages Katara's eyes are messed up. One is looking up and the other is looking down.

    • While Appa is flying above the clouds and avoiding the projectiles, his lower lip is fur less and gray like his upper lip should be. His mouth also looks too big.

    • When Avatar Roku is finished destroying the temple and it zooms in back to Aang. Aang's eyes are glowing but his arrow is not.

    • When Avatar Roku/Aang unleashes a barrage of fire onto the attackers, the Fire Nation soldiers faceplate's eyes close as if they were real eyes.

    • When Commander Zhao orders his blockade ships to stop, they immediately come to a dead halt, which is impossible in water.

    • At the end of the previous episode the moon was crescent-shaped, most likely to symbolize Aang's journey to the crescent island. However in this episode, which as openly stated in the previous takes place the very same night, the moon is full.

  • QUOTES (17)

    • (A fireball is shot at Appa and the gang all hold their noses and make expressions of disgust)
      Katara: Aang, we have to get out of Zuko's range before he fires another hot stinker at us!

    • Iroh: Really Prince Zuko, couldn't you shoot them down with something more fragrant?
      (Zuko ignites the fireball)

    • Roku: One hundred years ago, Fire Lord Sozin used that comet to begin the war. He and his Firebending army harnessed its incredible power and dealt a deadly first strike against the other nations.
      Aang: So the comet made them stronger?
      Roku: Yes. Stronger than you could even imagine.
      Aang: But that happened a hundred years ago. What does the comet have to do with the war now?

    • Aang: If we fly north, we can go around the Fire Nation ships and avoid the blockade. It's the only way.
      Katara: There's no time.
      Aang: This is exactly why I didn't want you to come; it's too dangerous!
      Katara: And that's exactly why we're here.

    • Zuko: You're too late, Zhao. The Avatar is inside and the doors are sealed.
      Zhao: No matter, sooner or later he has to come out.

    • Zuko: If Zhao wants to follow my trail of smoke, than that's exactly what I'll let him do.

    • Katara: Sokka, you're a genius!
      Aang: How is Sokka a genius? His plan didn't even work.
      Sokka: Come on, Aang. Let her dream.
      Katara: You're right. Sokka's plan didn't work. But it looks like it did.
      Aang: Did the definition of "genius" change in the last hundred years?

    • Avatar Roku (to Aang): Sozin's comet will return by the end of the summer, and Fire Lord Ozai will use its power to finish the war once and for all. If he succeeds, even the Avatar won't be able to restore balance to the world. Aang, you must defeat the fire lord before the comet arrives.

    • Sokka (in disbelief): We made it to the Fire Nation... (slumps his shoulders) ...Great...

    • Commander Zhao (On his ship, after Roku destroyed the temple): No prince, no Avatar, apparently the only thing I do have is five traitors.
      Great Sage: But Commander, only Shyu helped the Avatar.
      Commander Zhao: Save your stories for the Fire Lord. As far as I'm concerned, you're all guilty! Take them to the prison hold!

    • Zuko (after Aang broke away from him and entered the area where Avatar Roku's spirit would appear): Why did you help the Avatar?
      Shyu: Because it was once the sages' duty. It is still our duty.

    • Aang: They were waiting for me...
      Sokka: Hey, don't feel bad, you're only a hundred years late!

    • Aang: Follow me!
      Sokka: Do you know where you're going?
      Aang: ...Nope!

    • Sokka: His butt may be trying to tell you something...

    • Katara: Please don't go, Aang. The world can't afford to lose you to the Fire Nation. Neither can I.

    • Uncle Iroh: Sailing into Fire Nation waters...of all the foolish things you've done in your sixteen years, Prince Zuko, this is the most foolish!
      Zuko: I have no choice, Uncle.
      Iroh: Have you completely forgotten that the Fire Lord banished you? What if you're caught?
      Zuko: I'm chasing the Avatar! My father will understand why I'm returning home!
      Iroh: You give him too much credit. My brother is not the understanding type.

    • Katara: How's Aang going to make it out of this?
      Sokka: How are we gonna make it out of this?

  • NOTES (4)


    • Avatar Roku's sanctum only opening during the winter solstice is a reference to the many structures built by ancient cultures that aligned with solstices. For example, Stonehenge is in line with both solstices. Also, the Newgrange in Ireland is designed to allow a beam of light at sunrise of winter solstice to shine directly into a stone basin inside a chamber.

    • Avatar Roku's temple is clearly modeled off a pagoda, a tiered tower with multiple eaves commonly found in China, Japan, Korea, Nepal and several other Asia regions. Most were built to have a religious function, most commonly Buddhism, and were often situated near temples. Some like the one here served as temples themselves.

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