The Legend of Korra is a great show, and its problems do not lie with the characters, rather the plot.
WARNING: major spoilers for the entire show, so if you haven't watched the whole thing, don't read this until you finish.
I've seen many people complaining about how they don't like Korra as a character because she's a whiny, impulsive teenager. While I agree with this, I dont agree that this makes her a bad character. This is in fact what makes her such an interesting character. We get to see her grow up and mature throughout the show as she fights these villains.
The only problem with this show is the plot.
For one, they needed more episodes in each season to develop the tension. I felt like they didn't spend enough time on Korra's depression in book 4, and it made it feel like she was too easily cured of her issue. Of course, even after finally ridding her body of the remaining poison she was still having those hallucinations, but it wasn't as heavy as it could've been. They had the chance to develop a very emotional string of episodes, but it felt a bit rushed. To compare, the episodes of The Last Airbender where Oppa was lost were extremely emotional and almost made me cry, and I have legit never cried while watching a movie of tv show ever.
Moreover, small things like in season 4 when Korra reconnected with Rava, she says "I missed you Rava." This feels awkward because it seems like something someone would say heartfelt to someone they loved or cared for deeply. There was never that kind of relationship developed between Korra and Rava. There are many other examples of this that I cant think of at the moment.
Second, shows tend to follow this trend where threats become more and more difficult to deal with until the final season feels like somewhat of a massive finale. LoK didn't do this. If I were to put the seasons in the order that the show should've been in based solely on emotional intensity and threat level, it would be Book 4, Book 3, Book 1, Book 2.
Disclaimer: I know that there are many aspects of each season that couldn't have worked if the seasons were in this order. I'm focusing solely on the aspects of plot stated above.
Book 4 was a serious threat to the world with Kuveira (however tf you spell it) beginning the parallels in their universe to Nazi Germany in ours. Pretty clever and very serious a threat. Also the emotional intensity that they were trying to achieve (despite the fact that they failed) was definitely there with Korra's depression. However, it just didnt feel as intense as Books 1 and 2 in threat level. The threat level alone would've worked prefectly as a first season. Better than most shows. The first Book was just too intense for a first season.
Book 3 becomes a lot more emotional and much more tied to the events prior to the show, helping to develop the events that led to the current setting. Second seasons of shows tend to be the ones that delve into developing every character's past rather than just the main character or every character whose past is important to the plot as you may see in first seasons. Same with the setting. With Zahir and friends, it brings up a threat that originates from events prior to the show and creates a dark tone necessary to start developing the feel of the show and make it more interesting.
Book 1 is just too intense for a show-opening season. Sure it gets the audience hooked, but you're wasting plot energy on initially hooking the audience that can be used to keep them hooked. You don't need that much to hook an audience, and that's why I chose Book 4. Oman, like Zahir, had roots in the past of this show. It helped to further develop and deeply root the show with the events that led to the current setting and shows us very interesting character interactions between grown-up TLA characters. Also, the dark tone and ominous nature of Oman as a villain make him a very intimidating villain. Oman is probably one of the best villains in all of tv. He reminds me of Admiral Thrawn if he had a past that made him emotionally vulnerable. He's a genius and intends to use that genius to change the world order despite the deep roots he has in its past. All in all, its a very complex season with a very complex villain that just doesn't fit as a show-opener.
Book 2 should go without explanation, but apparently it needs it. Korra finally develops her connection to the spirit realm and does some crazy shit like turn into a massive blue spirit monster to fight the Antivatar (yeah thats what I'm calling it). She basically unlocks her full ability as an Avatar at this point and defeats a universal threat. This isnt just any villain that threatens world order like the last three. This involves spirits of good and evil. This involves developing the beginning of all avatars. Everything in the TLA and what has happened so far in this show had led up to this moment and this epic battle between massive spiritual figures in the ocean right outside the city the whole show centers around. All this to say it felt like the peak of the show and the remaining seasons just felt underwhelming because of it.
This was a lot more long-winded than I originally intended it to be, but to whoever got to the end: thank you for coming to my ted talk.
submitted by TheWetNapkin