Warning: spoilers forward for Avatar: The Way of Water.
James Cameron goes to introduce fireplace Na’vi in Avatar 3, and it’s exhausting to see that as something however a troll on the discourse between Avatar and Avatar: The Last Airbender. Ever since M. Night Shyamalan’s The Last Airbender needed to change its title to keep away from confusion with James Cameron’s Avatar, there was a notable rivalry between the 2 franchises. While Avatar went on to grow to be the highest-grossing movie in historical past, Avatar: The Last Airbender arguably provided much more originality than Cameron’s film, which has repeatedly been criticized for being spinoff and gimmicky.
Weirdly, James Cameron confirming new villains for Avatar 3 takes the franchise rivalry to a completely new stage. While Nickelodeon’s Avatar: The Last Airbender has grown tremendously as a franchise over time, together with a slew of Netflix initiatives set for the 2020s, the Avatar franchise remained largely dormant earlier than Avatar: The Way of Water. The debate over the “Avatar” title rages on, due to this fact, however Cameron’s sequel revolving round water Na’vi, similar to how Avatar: The Last Airbender options waterbenders, solely drew extra comparisons between the 2. It is very uncertain this was intentional, however now one other parallel is arising with Avatar 3.
The purpose that Avatar 3 will draw extra comparisons to Avatar: The Last Airbender is due to the “Ash People.” The Ash People in Avatar 3 will probably be fire-based Na’vi who function antagonists, and with the franchise’s current historical past of butting heads with Avatar: The Last Airbender, that attracts apparent parallels with the antagonistic Fire Nation. Granted, the 2 are totally different within the sense that James Cameron needs to indicate not all Na’vi are good, however the addition nonetheless feels very on the nostril. Considering the well-known schism between Avatar and Avatar: The Last Airbender, it feels as if James Cameron’s fireplace Na’vi concept is simply trolling the latter at this level.
That mentioned, the parallel continues to be possible nothing however coincidence. James Cameron has been growing Avatar since 1994, 11 years earlier than Avatar: The Last Airbender premiered in 2005, so it’s clear the director was engaged on his film lengthy earlier than the cartoon. The many similarities between James Cameron’s Avatar and Avatar: The Last Airbender are definitely noteworthy, much more so as a result of Avatar compelled The Last Airbender to alter its title, however sure to be unintentional on Cameron’s half.