Avatar The Last Airbender: 15 Plot Holes And Questions The Show Left Hanging

Avatar: the Last Airbender was one of Nickelodeon’s few original animated shows that was created with traditional animation before the transition between flat and CG animation. It was important for a number of reasons. For example, it was one of the original fantasy shows that featured an Asian-inspired world with Asiatic characters.

The show’s large universe and lore are so rich that the creators made an Avatar series bible in order to further outline information about the four nations. However, some of the plot points that the show introduced were left unresolved.

The creators managed to address some questions in The Legend of Korra series and in their comics if fans have been keeping up with the series. However, some still remain a mystery.

In a world as big as this, there are bound to be some plot point that haven’t  been answered and left viewers hanging. On this list, we're looking at plot points that Mike Dante DiMartino and Bryan Konietzko didn't answer in the first and second series, as well as in the comics.

Here are the 15 Plot Holes And Questions That Avatar The Last Airbender Left Hanging.

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15 What Exactly Is Energybending and how much spirit do you really need to do it?

One of the coolest bending abilities is energybending. It was introduced at the very last minute of the third act in the series. While many view it as a plot device that ultimately prevents Aang from having to kill Fire Lord Ozai, there are still many unanswered questions about energybending . The Legend of Korra addressed energybending and its capabilities, but it managed to bring more questions than answers.

Energybending is capable of removing and restoring the user’s bending ability as demonstrated by Aang. Because energybending predates the other elementals, users are able to bend the life energy within them, which can seal or restore bending.

Korra energybends the spirit energy cannon. This creates another spirit portal as a result, which is another neat trick. Not only that, but apparently the user can create an astral projection of themselves, if they amass a large amount of cosmic energy.

The lion turtle, who bestowed the power to Aang, warned that energybending can kill the user if the user’s spirit is weak. Korra, being low on the spiritual side, was able to master it easily, however, so it does bring a few questions on the schematics.

14 Who Is The Father Of Toph’s Children?

This question falls in between the first and second series. We learn that Toph founded a metalbending school before becoming Republic City's chief of police. Sometime after the end of the first series, Toph had her two children: Lin and Su.

To this day, the creators never spoke about the childrens' father. We know that Toph slept with two men and never explained the situation to her kids.

Toph's children had an incredible amount of influences in the Legend of Korra. Su founded Zhao Fu Metal clan, and Lin became the chief police in Republic City. Opal became an airbender, while her grandson Batar Jr. created the first spirit bomb.

If the creators ever have a chance to create a spinoff series based on Toph, we would definitely pay good money to see young Toph sass her love interests.

13 How did Iroh Find the Sun Warriors?

While it was explained in “The Firebending Masters” that General Iroh met the Sun Warriors, the series never showed Iroh meeting the Sun Warriors. He was able to master the Dancing Dragon, a traditional firebending technique that is based on Northern Shaolin kung fu and taught by dragons.

It’s mentioned that Iroh visited the Sun Warriors and learned firebending from the two dragons, Ren and Shaw. Iroh claimed that he killed another dragon to protect these last two dragons.

There are many questions about the encounter, such as: does the Fire Nation know about the Sun Warriors? Is the Sun Warrior’s crown a dragon egg? Did the egg hatch into Druk? How did Iroh find the Sun Warriors, since they’re believed to be extinct? Did he happen to stumble upon the old archaeological sites just like Aang and Zuko? These are a few of the main questions that the show never answered.

12 Did Zuko Ever Master Lightning?

One of the cool aspects of firebending is lightning. Iroh is the first proficient lightning user after he studied with waterbenders and learned about how to redirect energy instead of using full force.

Lightning bending is basically tai-chi for fire benders. The Iroh mastered lightning redirection, which later was mastered by Ozai and Azula, but all three were proficient in using lightningbending for offense. Zuko tried to learn how to redirect lightning from Iroh, but because of his internal struggle, he was unable to release the lightning from his system.

However, Zuko was able to bend Azula’s lightning. This was after he came to terms with his past and accepted Avatar Aang’s request to be his teacher. Since then, Zuko has used lightning by redirecting it, and not as an offensive attack. In the comics, Zuko redirected Azula’s lightning attacks with ease when she tried to attack Team Avatar.

11 Where Is Sokka's Sword and Boomerang?

Sokka sacrificed his ever-so-faithful boomerang and space sword in order to save the Fire Nation soldiers from falling to their deaths. Suki saved them just in time before the airship fell. The sword and the boomerang dropped into the forest and the weapons remain missing.

We expected that Sokka would go and find his sword-- a meteorite sword is a keeper. He could have at least asked Toph to earthbend the ground and track the weapons, but this didn't happen. Sokka never recovered them, and we may never know their location.

Although Sokka lost his boomerang, he did obtain a similar boomerang in the comics, and it's likely the tool seen during  the trial of Yakone. Though the creators never address whether or not Sokka found his sword and boomerang, our best bet is that they’re somewhere buried deep in the Wulong Forest, covered in vines.

If they showrunners happen to create a Sokka spinoff show, we would love to see the sword recovered and discover what really happened to Sokka.

10 What Happened to the Last Lion Turtle?

Similar to energybending, the Lion Turtle appeared in the last episode of show and bestowed Aang with the power to energybend. After that encounter it left. The show never talked about the turtle’s whereabouts, but the creators did expand the mythos and the Lion Turtles’ role in The Legend of Korra.

Lion Turtles were the original elemental benders that bestowed humans with the gift of bending the elements based on one condition: the user must return the power to the turtle once they returned back to the cities. Avatar Wan would, of course, defy this command. Because of this he was tossed into the Spirit Wilds.

Humans left the turtle cities and used their bending abilities to create their own cities. Humans weren’t kind to the turtles and hunted them. The last lion turtle location remains unknown and we have yet to see whether the turtle left for the spirit realm or is roaming in the physical world.

9 Did Zuko and Mai Get Married?

Another question that we never got an answer to was whether or not Zuko and Mai got married. We also don't know if Mai is actually Izumi's mother. In the first series, it's hinted that Mai cared deeply for Zuko, something that even Azula miscalculated.

By the end of the series, we see both of them finally together. However, Avatar fans who've read the comics would probably know that the relationship didn't last too long.

In The Promise trilogy, Mai and Zuko break up after he starts to make secret visits with his father and keeps her out of the loop. She leaves the royal palace and accepts her aunt's invitation to work as an assistant in the family flower shop.

However, Mai and Zuko do have a few adventures together. Ater the Harmony Restoration Movement, Mai becomes involved with Zuko when her brother, Tom is kidnapped (again) by the Kemurikage.

Mai never actually gets back together with Zuko and, instead, only works with him in order to rescue her brother. Their relationship is still in shambles despite all that they've been through.

8 Did Appa Ever Find More Sky Bison?

Appa has been through many adventures with Aang. In The Last Airbender, Appa is the last known sky bison in the world, so fans have wondered whether or not Team Avatar were able to find out what happened to the other sky bison, or if, somehow, there were any others in the world that had been hidden away. If there were any survivors, perhaps there might have been a possible mate for Appa.

However, the creators did reveal that there were other sky bison in the comic series. Aang apparently finds a herd of sky bison after the Hundred Years Wars. Since then, the Air Nomads repopulated the temples with sky bison.

In The Legend of Korra, Oogi is one of the known sky bison descended from the herd, but is not directly related to Appa. It still remains a mystery whether or not Appa ever discovered that there were more sky bison or was ever reconnected with his kind.

7 Is Jet Really Dead?

The short answer to whether or not Jet is really did is yes. Long answer, however, is that Jet died from his wounds after he defied the Dai Li's orders to kill the Avatar. However, Jet told Team Avatar and his friends that he was fine.

When the Freedom Fighters told Team Avatar to leave and find Appa, Toph sensed that Jet was lying. Because the network wouldn't allow the show to depict any onscreen deaths or a mention any death due to censorship, however, viewers were not given a final scene.

However, the creators decided to show an actor depicting Jet in the Ember Island Players play getting crushed by a boulder in order to provide views with a real ending to the character.

Even then, though, a writer of the comic series believed that Jet was alive because his death was so ambiguous, and chose to draw him with the rest of the Freedom Fighters in the series.

6 Where Are Smellerbee and Longshot?

Smellerbee and Longshot, two members of the  Freedom Fighters, were last seen with Jet at Lake Laogai. However, they didn’t return for the final conflict like most of the characters did in the final confrontation. The creators didn’t forget them entirely, though. The two appeared in the comic series, The Promise, a continuation of the Harmony Restoration Movement.

Smellerbee heads the new Freedom Fighters group and participated in Yu Dao’s liberation from the Fire Nation. However, a few of the members, like Sneer, decided to side with the Yu Dao residents.

In fact, Sneer fell in love with Kori, which Smellerbee didn’t take too well. She rode on top of the Longshot, siding the Earth Emperor when he chose to send troops into Yu Dao.

In the end, King Kuei ordered her and the protesters to a ceasefire and approved that Yu Dao could live at peace due to the city’s unique multiculturalism. However, the duo's location is unknown after this.

5 How Did The White Lotus Come Into Existence?

The Last Airbender introduced the White Lotus early in the game. The sages that Team Avatar meet are all related to the organization. Viewers expected to find out more about the Lotus and it’s purpose. The secret organization was revealed during Sozin’s Comet, which thus revealed their Order to the public.

Before they became the official protectorates of the Avatar, the White Lotus' original purpose was to find like-minded scholars that shared knowledge beyond the four nations. They never cared about the current politics or the short-term situations, and instead, only choose to intervene when necessary.

Although the show did address some aspects of the Order, including the Red Lotus Order in The Legend of Korra, it never introduced the original leaders or how the society came into existence.

They were mostly in the background while Team Avatar did most of the legwork, despite the fact that the Order had the most skilled benders wgho could easily take down Fire Lord Ozai. The White Lotus was completely left on the sidelines.

4 What Is The Cabbage Merchant’s Real Name?

We’ve seen this poor merchant get his cabbage cart destroyed by the Team Avatar and their enemies time after time. What was meant to be a funny one-time animated scene became an ongoing joke that the creators kept bringing back.

The Cabbage Merchant never recovered and has since become extremely protective of his cabbages. However, the show never gave him a name. However, we do know about what happened to him after the Hundred Years War.

The merchant settled as a restaurant owner and had a good run with it until he met Team Avatar yet again. While the team didn’t wreck his stand, an earthquake destroyed his cabbages and he became displaced due to an incoming attack from General Iron.

The merchant lost his cabbages again, but he encounters Satoru riding on an automatic forklift, which inspires him to start a brand new business dealing with automation. He goes on to found Cabbage Corp, a rival company to Future Industries that sells cheaper alternative goods. His son, Lau Gan-Lan heads the company.

3 Did Azula Recover?

Azula was a formidable opponent to Team Avatar and proven to be efficient in getting rid of rulers. However, Ursa’s comments, as well as Mai and Ty Lee’s betrayal, drove Azula insane. She even begins having hallucinations of her mother.

The last time we saw her, was during the Agni Kai against Zuko where she suffered a full mental breakdown. After the Agni Kai, viewers never found out what happened to her and whether or not she even recovered from her madness.

However, the comic series did address this. Azula is still the crazy, diabolical princess we all know, though eventually her mental state was cured by other means. It’s revealed that she’s admitted to an insane asylum.

She was taken out to aid Zuko’s mission in finding Ursa in The Search. While Team Avatar didn’t approve, Zuko still brought her along, despite the fact that she tried to kill them multiple of times. They did figure out the truth of Ursa, and after a final confrontation with Team Avatar, Azula fled into the forest. She appeared one last time in Smoke and Shadow.

2 What was Bosco’s Fate?

Bosco is the loveable dancing bear who is often seen with King Kuei, and though the king may appear to be high maintenance, Bosco is Kuei’s sole companion. While the whole Earth Kingdom abandoned Kuei, Bosco stayed with him and traveled around the world with him, exploring the different lands.

They returned to the Earth Kingdom after the 100 Years War finished. It’s assumed that Bosco returns to his life of luxury and outlives his owner, but his fate is never explained.

Apparently, it’s implied in The Legend of Korra that the Earth Queen ate the poor bear after King Kuei’s passing. Rumors of the bear’s death spread throughout the series and even the viewers question whether or not the queen is cruel enough to kill the adorable bear.

In the DVD commentary, the creators dispel the rumors and confirm that the Earth Queen had indeed eaten Bosco. However, overall, Bosco was a popular figure among the people and Little Ba Sing Se had a replica of the bear.

1 Where is Zuko’s Mom?

Perhaps one of the biggest questions left unanswered surrounds Ursa’s location. After Ozai’s defeat, Zuko asked for Ursa’s whereabouts or at least some clue about his mother. The show’s fanbase was left without any answers. The creators used this to their own advantage in The Legend of Korra, when Katara is about to explain about Zuko’s mother before Ikki butts in.

Ozai didn’t know about her location, but fortunately, the creators answered this question in the comics, and it’s one heck of an explanation.

After Azulon’s death, Ursa returned back to her home village in search for her parents. Here, she reunited with her former lover Ikem. She learned that the Mother of Faces changed Ikem’s face, which made it possible for him to escape from Ozai’s assassination.

She, in return, chose to change her face and wipe away all of her memories. She had another child named Kiyi. She remembers everything after the Mother of Faces gave her face and memories back, and Ursa and her newfound family return to the royal palace.


Can you think of any other questions that were left unanswered in Avatar The Last Airbender? Let us know in the comment section!

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