‘Avatar: The Last Airbender’: Should Zuko Have Ended Up With Katara?
With Avatar: The Last Airbender available for streaming on Netflix, many fans of the show are coming back for another viewing in adulthood. And with a second viewing comes new discoveries, and of course, new questions. Some fans have been wondering if Katara and Aang were truly the best match after all. Could it instead have been Katara and Zuko? Luckily, fans have had plenty of time to weigh in on the question, and suffice it to say there’s no shortage of opinions.
Why Katara and Aang are a good match
Before investigating whether or not Zuko and Katara would have been a good match, it’s worth looking at what Aang and Katara share.
Avatar: The Last Airbender sees Katara taking a journey of healing and growth alongside Aang. Katara lost most of her Water Tribe to the Fire Nation, who either took them as prisoners, or essentially forced them to join the war, in the case of Katara’s father.
Similarly, Aang lost the entire Air Nomads to the Fire Nation, including his friends and mentors. Both of the two had to come to terms with their monumental loss during their journey, and they did so together, helping each other grow and survive during times of emotional turmoil.
After spending so much time building each other up and learning about one another as they healed, it makes sense that the two would feel a deep kinship and mutual understanding. The two are both fun-loving, with Aang’s zanier side bringing out Katara’s own silliness. Meanwhile, the water bender’s level-headed thinking helps focus Aang when necessary, and her preparation and planning is a solid counterpart to Aang’s whimsical nature.
Why Zuko and Katara could be a good match
However, there are those who feel as if Avatar: The Last Airbender did them dirty by bringing Katara and Aang together. These fans feel as if Katara and Zuko were meant to fall in love instead.
Katara and Zuko also share loss. Zuko lost his mother, just like Katara did when the Fire Nation attacked her village. However, Zuko is also a tormentor and an enemy for a long portion of the series.
While it may be gratifying for some viewers to imagine the “bad boy goes good and wins over her heart” scenario, it seems as if Aang and Katara have more in common and share more than Zuko and Katara. It may have been a gratifying moment to see Zuko change and earn affection as a result, but it would also be somewhat invalidating — Zuko and Katara haven’t shared or grown nearly as much together as Aang and Katara.
‘Avatar: The Last Airbender’ fans seem divided
Fans of Avatar: The Last Airbender seem to have pretty divisive opinions when it comes to speculating on Katara and her relationship.
One Redditor suggests that the show creators were never interested in bringing Katara and Zuko together. In fact, they think the creators even mocked the concept during an episode. They wrote, “I think I read from the words of Bryan and Mike that they had never even thought of pairing those two and were confused by the fan support. You can see them clearly mocking it in ‘The Ember Island Players.’”
Another user mocked the idea of Katara falling for her tormentor. They wrote, “Everyone knows the way to a girl’s heart is to try to burn down her village and constantly attack her and her friends.”
However, one Redditor suggested that the water bender saw Aang as a brother or a child at the beginning of the show, and that it should have stayed that way. They wrote, “From the beginning Katara treated Aang as a little brother and continued to do so until book three. Even after she was told she was going to marry a powerful bender she wasn’t thinking about Aang. I still think the reason she was so against Zuko joining the gang was because she still had feelings for him.”