Not having cable or internet at home means I don’t spend much time watching TV, but every once in a while I’ll fish a cheap DVD out of the $3 bin at Walmart and watch it on my laptop. With wonderfully low expectations I am often pleasantly surprised.

My latest surprise has been a cartoon that (if memory serves me correct) was recommended by a niece.

The Last Airbender was a mid 2000s TV show written to appeal to middle-school kids but it has a solid plot, structured around different styles of Kung Fu, and it is beautifully drawn.




Its rare to see an American cartoon so well done. Since the 1990s animation in the United States has been either computer generated or intentionally grotesque. Japanese anime keeps the hand-drawn tradition alive but since most Western anime fans are perverts I’ve never gotten into it. The Last Airbender by contrast is simply gorgeous.

Correction: It seems that The Last Airbender was written in the U.S. and the storyboards done by American cartoonists, but the actual animation was done in South Korea, yet another small cut among the thousand my patriotism has suffered.


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