This last week I was brought down low with a virus that I’m not going to get into details here with they symptoms. Let’s just say I’m down 7lbs and for darn near 2 1/2 days I couldn’t leave my bed and on the rare occasions I did I felt like I was on some sort of weird drug that made things fuzzy and the world roll around weirdly. My most sincere apologies to my co-workers and boss because on Tuesday I had no sitter for Kyle then I got the wonderful ick and had a vacation day on Friday. So I missed most of last week. And you know, I realized Friday as I was finally showering and feeling as if I had some strength again, I never have that much time off work unless I’m too sick to even tweet or read Fark.
But I digress, as I mentioned I had already taken a vacation day on Friday to enjoy a 4 day weekend with my boys. Jason is on vacation and it’s not like Kyle’s social life is all that popping. On Friday my wonderful mother in law offered to take Kyle over night for some grammie time and so mom and dad could have some time where we don’t have to say “no not poo poo, that’s pee pee” or “please do not put your trains on the cat.” When we got there to drop him off he made her month when he finally called her grandma. It was actually gama but it works! She slipped us some money and told us to go to dinner and a movie, you know have a date. I think that’s what a date is anyway.
By this time I was finally feeling hungry and had successfully kept a cup of tea where it belonged, I was game to try to find something to eat. The movie however; was a bit of a problem.
Jason thought I’d jump at the chance to go and see The Last Airbender because I was such a fan of the show. I started watching it the Saturday we moved to where we are now, it was the only thing on and it was a marathon. I just got caught up in it. The story wasn’t the most original thing out there but it was fun, funny and had an over all plot that was evident from moment one. It had elements that were very animeish but it was totally American at the same time. I’ll never forget the first time Jason saw it with me and Appa came across the screen, he looks at me and asked me WTH that was. I told him that was Appa, Aang’s flying bison. Jason’s response was to look at me and tell me to shaaad up, ala Ralph Kramden. Then Aang’s happy voice pipped in, introducing his companion and pet as “Appa, my flying bision.”
To this day Jason asks me if we can go penguin sledding.
When Kyle got into his first TV show, The Backyardagains we both laughed because Pablo is voiced by the same voice actor who played Aang.
So, it was a reasonable thought that after my dinner of some rice and soy sauce, that I’d jump to see the movie. But no, M. Knight Shyamalan, I understand you killed Airbender. I’d had such high hopes because he professed to be a fan of the series, as is his daughter. No, a fan of the series knows that the hero’s name is Aang, sounds sort of like pain. Not Ung or Aung.
See, I’d been willing to give the movie the benefit of my doubt after even bad review after bad review. I figured, maybe those people’s hopes were too high, either for having loved the series too much or Shyamalan. Or even because they were following the fad of bashing Shyamalan as a one hit wonder. It wasn’t until I saw the behind the scenes preview that I decided that I wouldn’t go and pay top dollar to see the movie.
During the behind the scenes look at the movie I was treated to the hero’s name being mispronounced, an old man water bender teaching Aang water bending and the admission that the Kyoshi warriors were taken out, filmed but removed. As well as most of the humor. Wait, what? I know that when an adaption hits the screen liberties are taken for the director or writers artistic vision, time and budget. Even Harry Potter had things removed or cut back. But with Harry Potter the important plot points and heart of the books weren’t gutted.
In just a sneak preview I saw one major plot point gutted. In the series all the male water benders have been captured by the Fire Lord. Only Katara was left to be Aang’s teacher.
The Kyoshi warriors a major players in the final chapter, and the downfall of the Fire Lord. How would they be introduced later, it would make no sense. Of course, you could just rewrite the ending to cover their gaping absence.
But most of all the humor is what made the show work. The slapstick comedy, the one liners, the looks. Here are a group of travelers who are tasked with saving the known fricking world. Of course it’s serious but they’re kids. Humor is what kept them from losing their minds. I bet one of the main reasons Sokka wasn’t tossed off Appa was because of his ability to make them laugh. He offered more than just humor to the group, but never underestimate the usefulness of the guy who can make you chuckle when things seem their worst.
So, no, I haven’t seen Last Airbender and as of right now I have no indention of spending a dime on doing so. Liberties I could live with but from what I understand the movie is a bad parody of what the series was, what it’s heart was. I’ll just save my pennies and buy the original series on DVD.
M. Knight Shyamalan, if I were an angry fan, which I’m not, I’d send Azula to have a word with you.