The Last Airbender is one of the best series (animated or not) of all time. Every time a watch an episode, I say something like, “Aww, [featured character] is the best!” I’m completely attached to every character, and each one is essential to the plot. With ten-or-so main characters and dozens of side characters, that’s a tall order, and yet I can’t think of a single episode that isn’t essential to their development and progressing the plot. In fact, one episode (Tales of Ba Sing Se) just follows some of the main characters around on their individual exploits for a day, and it’s commonly considered one of the best episodes of the series.
I watched the last bunch of episodes recently, and I remembered one more thing I enjoyed about the ending [the guy gets the girl, not much of a spoiler, amirite?]. When two of the main characters end up finally getting together, they hug, then they share a long awaited kiss. Why the hug? Because they’re friends first, no matter what happens, including romance. I love that. It’s completely believable for those characters, and a perfect way to end an action-packed, (frankly) stressful finale.
I cannot endorse this series highly enough. It starts out slow and childlike, then cranks up the heat and goes all amazing on us. It’s like crack, if that’s what crack was like.