Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Conspiracy Theory: Aang Fathered All the Airbenders

With respect to Avatar's intended age range, the following blog post may not be one hundred percent appropriate--or interesting--to people of all age ranges. It's also not safe for work, technically. In the sense that you really shouldn't be reading blogs at work about cartoons at work. Unless you're on break. Then you're probably in the clear.

As I have previously stated in this blog, I don't think Katara and Aang were sexually exclusive throughout their lifetime. [Did Aang "Cheat" on Katara] Given Aang's desire to resurrect his culture and preserve the art of airbending, I think it's extremely likely that he had some (possibly with permission) extramarital adventures. As I state in the article above, it takes Aang at least twenty years to father another airbender; something that would presumably be direly frustrating. Even more so when you consider that Tenzin won't have his first child until the age of forty-one, six years after his father's death.

There are other problems, too, of course. Katara can only get pregnant once at at a go. It might take three or four years to genuinely ascertain whether or not a child is an airbender. Women have a finite number of children they can bear: although many of these reports appear apocryphal, the most bountiful women in real life hit like... seventy at MAX, and that's with a woman who is content to just be pregnant all the time, which is a life that's hard to imagine on poor Katara. As a man, however, Aang can father children pretty much as fast as he can woo ladies, and men can remain virile their entire lives (the oldest father in the real world was 96).

No, it seems to me that Aang, the intrepid world traveller, probably tried his hand with lots of ladies. If it seems out-of-character for Aang to subsequently abandon those children and for them to not be discussed by the three children he had by his wife, well, it also seems out of character that Aang would be a distant father. It's possible that he had many children out of wedlock, trying desperately to bear airbenders and failing catastrophically.

Only one airbender is ever born in Aang's lifetime, but then, after his death, four are born in rapid succession, less than ten years apart. And, eighteen years after his death, harmonic convergence and the destruction of Vaatu results in a crop of new airbenders appearing, all over the world.

Who are these airbenders? What do they have in common? From what we can tell, not a lot. However, one of them, Bumi, is the son of Avatar Aang. Could it be that some aspect of harmonic convergence, or Aang himself, wasn't preventing new airbenders from being born, but was preventing them expressing their abilities?

Aang couldn't have fathered everybody that becomes an airbender, of course. Kai is six or seven years Korra's junior, born much too late to have been fathered by Aang, and while Opal COULD be old enough to have been fathered by Aang, we know her parents to be Suyin and Bataar. But could they be more of Aang's grandchildren? Kai is an orphan--with his parents dead before harmonic convergence, there's no way of knowing if they'd have had bending abilities. While this does mean disturbing things for Kai and Jinora's budding relationship (they'd be half-cousins), I'm not even sure it's illegal in the US.

Opal's parent is a little more complicated, since we have some ideas. We don't know Bataar's forebears, so it's possible on that end. However, Grandma Toph is extremely reluctant to share the names of the men she was involved with.. so Opal's grandfather COULD be Aang. I expected Toph would hook p with Sokka, given Toph's apparent crush on him in Season 2 (S2E12, Serpent's Pass), but that's with only a few weeks of history between them. By the time Suyin comes around, Toph and Aang would have nearly three decades of history, and Suyin doesn't become an airbender during harmonic convergence because she's already an earthbender. Suyin is distinct from her sister with her slightly sparklier attitude, possible the result of Aang's bubbly personality.

That would also mean that Zaheer is somehow related to Aang. Given his interest in airbending culture (ruminating as he does on airbender monks long before the Harmonic Convergence grants him bending abilities), it could even be possible that he has some connection to the Air Acolytes prior to joining the Red Lotus Society. While it seems unlikely that he would know that Aang is his ancestor and NOT mention it when he meets half sibling and favorite son Tenzin, it's entirely possible he was born to an Air Acolyte family.


Or maybe I'm reading way too much into this. Hey, do you have some evidence supporting this? Or contradicting it? Say so in the comments! Or, if you're visiting from Reddit, talk about it on the reddit thread. Or, if your'e visiting from Facebook, hi Mom!

No comments:

Post a Comment