The Legend of Korra: The Sting (2×06)
Synopsis: After Korra leaves Republic City, Mako sets up a sting operation to figure out who has been stealing Asami’s inventory and to see if it’s the same people behind the Cultural Center bombing. Meanwhile, fame starts to go to Bolin’s head.
This episode made me feel like Godzilla getting away from giant hornets. It makes me mad that I’m going out of town on this episode and Therese is getting to review the gorgeous looking ‘Beginnings’ episodes that are happening next week because this episode was awful.
I could leave it at that, but I’m obligated to at least describe parts of the episode.
So the episode opens with one of Varrick’s ships being hi-jacked by what appears to be members of the Northern Water Tribe using bombs similar to the ones used at the Cultural Center. Meanwhile, Eska and Desna report back to Unalaq (who seems to be coming out of the Spirit World when they find him) that Korra is dead.
Back in Republic City, the first The Adventures of Nuktuk: Hero of the South episode premieres. I have to admit, I got a chuckle out of it because it’s bad. Like… 1980 Flash Gordon movie meets the Ember Island Players bad. It doesn’t even have the Queen soundtrack to balance out the terrible. Just a cheesy theme song about Nuktuk. However, the kids seem to enjoy it and Nuktuk is on his way to being a hit. Varrick assures Bolin that the Mover will help get support for the North, and Bolin awkwardly hits on Ginger. As the film ends, Varrick’s assistant Xu Li informs him that another one of his ships has been hijacked.
Asami arrives at the police station for the ship captain’s questioning while Mako is silently angsting over his breakup Korra. He assures Asami that he’s going to find the people responsible as they listen into the questioning. When the captain reveals that the bombs were remotely detonated, Mako gets a hunch that it’s related to the cultural center bombing and rushes in to question the captain. Lin gets justifiably mad for Mako barging in on her questioning and tells him to get out.
Mako is ready to give up on this, but Asami is determined to keep Future Industries afloat because it’s all she has left. That’s when the two of them decide to go behind Lin’s back and set up a sting operation to find out who’s been stealing the supply. Well, it’s Mako’s idea, but Asami talks him into it with her big, beautiful sad eyes and Varrick agrees to throw in one of his ships to help. Did I mention Varrick is here through a lot of this? That’s important later.
The two need extra man power to help make the sting work, but with Korra “out of town” (Mako doesn’t know she’s been eaten by an angry spirit yet and doesn’t want to admit to Asami that they broke up) and Bolin refusing to help, Mako and Asami decide to make a deal with the Triple Threat Triads to get them to help on the operation. Setting out into the ocean, Mako reveals that him and Korra have broken up after one of the Triads pesters him about it. However, that’s nothing compared to the revelation that Mako and Asami have been double-crossed and that the Triads have been paid to keep the two distracted for a few hours. Mako tells Asami and they decide to make a run for it, but the Triads overhear and set off after them. I’ll admit, the speedboat chase scene that results from this is pretty damn awesome. Especially with Asami taking charge and maneuvering that speedboat like the badass that she is and keeping the Triads off her trail. It reminded me a lot of the fan art of Mako Mori driving Mako in the Mako Tank from Mass Effect on a Mako shark. God, this series would be so much better of Mako Mori was the Mako on the show…
After they escape the triads, Asami realizes what they were trying to distract them from. Quickly, they go to the warehouse and find that the entire Future Industries stock has been stolen. Asami is naturally upset because this means that her business that she’s tried so hard to keep afloat is dead in the water. Despite her protests, Mako insists that he can figure out and that he’s not going to give up on Asami.
And here comes the part of the episode where I had a very Michael Scott reaction.
In Asami’s emotionally compromised state, she kisses Mako. Y’know, the guy who cheated on her and then broke up with her to date Korra. The guy who compared her to a bloodsucking leech. The reason we had a terrible love triangle plot last season. Well, guess what? With Korra and Mako broken up, it looks like the writers are determined to bring this stupid love triangle back. I just have to ask WHY? WHY are the writers so determined to force this? Did they not listen when people said the love triangle actually dragged the first season down? WHY ARE THEY BRINGING THIS BACK INSTEAD OF LETTING ASAMI BE HER OWN CHARACTER? I get that Asami is emotionally compromised, but I don’t need her plot line to be a ploy to get her back with Mako. Ugh. Petition for Book Three to have Asami and Korra realizing how stupid Mako is and make out.
Anyway, Mako goes to the set of Nuktuk after questioning one of the triads who double crossed him and has a realization that I picked up on last week. With the pyrotechnics in the film being set off by a remote detonator similar to the one Mako found at the Center, he realizes that Varrick was the one behind the attacks and who double crossed them. By the time he goes to tell Asami though, she’s already signed over controlling interest in Future Industries over to Varrick. I guess it’s going to be less of an arms race now and more of a political game of cat and mouse as Mako works to expose Varrick. Joy. Because this season needed more politics.
Bolin’s plot line in this episode is so terrible, stupid and gross, it makes me want to spit acid. Basically, the fame from being Nuktuk has gone to his head so much that he can’t even tell the difference between what’s real and what’s on screen anymore. He even non-consensually kisses Ginger because he thinks that she’s into him as much as her character is into Nuktuk when she clearly isn’t.
It’s bad enough that it’s supposed to be the comedic b-plot, but Bolin saying “it seemed like you liked it too” with a smug grin on his face makes me want to smash his face in with a rock. I really don’t want to say that about Bolin because he’s one of my favorite characters on the show, but right now, he’s being a real Robin Thicke.
Luckily, the episode ends on a bit of a twist/cliffhanger that gives me hope that something interesting and hopefully not gross. The episode cuts to an island where Korra has washed up on the shore. Yep! She’s alive! As she wakes up, she’s surrounded by Fire Nation soldiers. She panics and tries to airbend them away, but is too weak to run. One of the soldiers assures her that they’re there to help her, but that’s when the big shocker comes: Korra doesn’t remember who she is or how she got to the island. She passes out and the episode ends, leaving us curious about Korra’s fate.
If this episode didn’t have such a lynchpin turning point in the last five minutes, I would say just to skip it entirely. The plot moves slowly and the writers seem determined to make these characters terrible while still expecting us to sympathize with them. I really hope that there’s a turn around after ‘Beginnings’ because I’m starting to think that Book 2 may be a wash.