'Avatar: The Last Airbender' Creator 'Schooled' About His Own Show by a Fan

Avatar: The Last Airbender has been holding steady on Netflix's Top 10 charts since it was added to the streaming platform, and the creator has a suspicion of why. Michael Dante Dimartino connected Avatar to current events and America's political climate.

The kid's animated show aired between 2005 and 2008 on Nickelodeon. Dimartino explained there's a political reason why the show may still be so successful. He quoted a paragraph from an article by Salon on his Facebook which reads:

"The sobering difference between watching Avatar in its time versus seeing it now is that life in America looks and feels a lot like life in the Fire Nation as Aang, Katara, Sokka, Toph, and eventually Zuko experience it," the article reads. "It is a place addicted to its increasingly hollow sense of greatness and even superiority, steered by a leader more concerned with his own glory than caring for his people."

avatar last airbender live action
Concept art from Netflix's "Avatar: The Last Airbender" series. Many comments have praised the ability of "Avatar" fans, now adults, to think deeper about the Fire Nation, and 2020 America's potential similarities. Netflix

The last line appears to point to President Donald Trump, whose leadership has been controversial. His critics often compare his personality to that of a narcissist, while his fans adore his bluntness and lack of past political ties.

Many comments praised the ability of Avatar fans, now adults, to think deeper about the Fire Nation, and 2020 America's potential similarities. Some fans didn't love the political spin, though, and one responded to Dimartino directly.

"Just let people enjoy the show," wrote a Facebook user named David. "Stop trying to make it into some political circus. Especially because it wasn't created to be a political tool. It's a d*** kids show. Figger [sic] it out."

David's comment was shared on Reddit's r/dontyouknowwhoIam, a subreddit that's "for instances of people not realizing who they're talking to is who they're talking about." It appears David did know he was talking to the co-creator and executive producer of Avatar because he was on the creator's Facebook page. But that didn't stop him from claiming the show wasn't ever political.

Reddit didn't necessarily agree. "There was a worldwide war for 100 years. How can you not see that it's absolutely political?" wrote u/tmarie1135.

Another responded. "What? Did David even watch the show? It's political as f***," explained u/Iksbrown. "War, genocide, imperialism, censorship, discrimination, oppression... to name a few themes."

Some comments even compared the main characters to Antifa. "Star Trek has the same problem - a subset of fans, usually conservative, refuse to view the shows as political and turn a blind eye to all of the political messaging in the franchise," wrote u/indyK1ng.

The general consensus seems to be that Avatar fans were ready to compare America, or other political states, to the plot of Avatar because of some modern-day similarities they claim echo 2020.

Avatar: The Last Airbender follows Aang, the living Avatar, who can control all four elements. Each element represents a nation, and the Avatar is the only person who can potentially save the world from the Fire Nation, who is trying to take control of all. With his loyal friends, Aang ventures throughout the nations to learn to control all of the elements.