With only four seasons and episodes coming in at under 30 minutes, it’s easy to binge Avatar: The Last Airbender. The animated original, now on Netflix, has brought old fans back to its fantastical world, while also welcoming new fans who didn’t see the show when it first premiered on Nickelodeon. The series confronts spirituality, balance, gray morality, and more while managing to strike the proper chord with a young demographic.
While there aren’t many shows that live up to Avatar: The Last Airbender, a few animated shows on Netflix are worth a watch. A few others aim to conjure the same degree of fantasy and wonder in different ways.
1. ‘The Legend of Korra’
The Legend of Korra comes from the same minds as Avatar: The Last Airbender. Once again, Bryan Konietzko and Michael Dante DiMartino return fans to the Avatar world — many years following Aang’s journey.
A young woman from the water tribe, Korra, is the new Avatar. She’s headstrong, resilient, stubborn, and a bit rebellious; however, she’s compassionate and empathetic. Willing to put her life on the line for others, Korra’s series is familiar yet strays far enough from the former narrative to feel fresh and inspired.
2. ‘Troll Hunters: Tales of Arcadia’
When teens stumble upon a mysterious amulet, their lives change forever. They embark on an adventure-filled and dangerous journey to save two worlds, becoming enmeshed in a war between trolls raging beneath their small town of Arcadia.
Though Troll Hunters lacks some of the mature themes inherent to Avatar: The Last Airbender, the show offers up a lot of heart and takes Guillermo del Toro’s (Pan’s Labyrinth, The Shape of Water, Hellboy) focus on monster stories to bright and youthful places. Confronting love, heartache, sacrifice, fear, internal turmoil, and more, the show goes deep enough to satisfy The Last Airbender fans with a new fantasy.
3. ‘The Dragon Prince’
The Dragon Prince benefits from strong world-building and a captivating narrative. The setting: the land of Xadia where magic comes from six primal sources — the sun, moon, stars, sky, earth, and ocean.
When human mages create a dangerous and immoral seventh kind – dark magic — they begin to harvest unique and innocent creatures they require as ingredients. A war between Xadia and other human kindgoms quickly spirals out of control. Three kids from opposite sides of the conflict wind up joining forces when they discover a secret that could change it all.
The Dragon Prince, Troll Hunters, and The Legend of Korra all place youthful character at the center of each conflict — demanding that children save the day when the adults around them struggle to see the forest for the trees.