Why Uncle Iroh Made Avatar: The Last Airbender Wiser
Entertainment

Why Uncle Iroh Made Avatar: The Last Airbender Wiser

His advice to his conflicted nephew provided a wealth of wisdom to young and old viewers alike.

4365
Why Uncle Iroh Made Avatar: The Last Airbender Wiser
DeviantArt

Avatar: The Last Airbender is one of my favorite shows of all time, and is considered by many to be in the top tier of shows created for kids. It's three seasons spanned a period of three years between 2005-2008 and I fondly remember watching it for the first time. Recently, I have returned to the series to bask in the element-bending, adventurous nostalgia we all yearn for. One of the things that separates the truly great children's shows from the ordinary is their ability to please older, more mature audiences along with kids, and to teach important lessons without screaming them in your face.

Many of the important themes and lessons of Avatar were delivered through the humble voice of Uncle Iroh. Before touching on his wisdom, allow me to explain a little more about the show.

(Spoilers ahead) Avatar: The Last Airbender revolved around Aang, an Airbender who was also a being known as an "Avatar." The Avatar could master all four elements, and acted as the bridge between the spirit world and the natural world. Aang awakened after being trapped in an iceberg for about a hundred years. While he was gone, a war had raged for those hundred years after the Fire Nation committed genocide against the Air Nomads in the hope of killing the Avatar and proceeding with attempting to rule over the other three nations. The four nations are Fire, Earth, Water, and Air - the four elements. As the Avatar, Aang needed learn to master the other elements and stop the Firelord (the ruler of the Fire Nation) from harnessing the power of a comet to finish the war.

Zuko, the banished crown prince of the Fire Nation, had spent three years hunting the missing Avatar in a bid to regain his honor and return home to his father. Iroh, the brother of the Firelord and Zuko's uncle, joined Zuko on this quest to help guide him along the way. Iroh was the eldest son of the previous Firelord, and a mighty general. However, when he was defeated after a nearly two-year-long campaign to capture the capital city of the Earth Kingdom and his son was killed in combat, Iroh fell into a crippling state of grief and stepped down. His brother, Ozai, convinced their father to give Iroh's birthright to him instead, and he became the new Firelord upon their father's death.

Over the three seasons in the series, Iroh and Zuko travel together most of the time, and Iroh tried his best to guide Zuko to do the right thing. Zuko was banished, and had his face burned by his own father for disrespecting him in a council meeting. Iroh, in grief for his own son's death, joined Zuko's journey because he wanted to act as the caring father figure Zuko had never had.

Aang and Zuko underwent similar developmental paths to realizing their full potential. Aang mastered the elements and found a way to end the war in his own way, creating peace for the world. Zuko walked a tightrope between doing bad things in order to fulfill a false hope for a love from his Father that didn't really exist and becoming a better person by helping the Avatar end the war. While Aang had various masters help him along his difficult path, Zuko was helped solely by his Uncle Iroh.

Uncle Iroh, voiced by Mako, a proficient Japanese voice actor (and Greg Baldwin in the third season, after Mako passed away in 2006), provides much of the show's wisdom and humor. He showcases the talented writing of the show's creators, and offered a mouthpiece for many of the important life lessons the show wanted to portray. He consistently asked his nephew to consider what he truly wanted in his life, and begged him to see the good of which he was capable.

Iroh will go down in history as one of the kindest and wisest characters on a children's show. I consider his lessons in my life today, and how they impacted me as a child and as an adult. To help show Uncle Iroh's wisdom, I am attaching ten of his greatest quotes from the series.


1. "Is it your own destiny, or is it a destiny someone else has tried to force on you? ... It's time for you to look inward and begin asking yourself the big questions. Who are you and what do you want?"

2. "It is usually best to admit mistakes when they occur, and to seek to restore honor."

3. "Pride is not the opposite of shame, but its source. True humility is the only antidote to shame."

4. "You must never give into despair. Allow yourself to slip down that road, and you surrender to your lowest instincts. In the darkest times, hope is something you give yourself. That is the meaning of inner strength."

5. "It is important to draw wisdom from many different places. If you take it from only one place, it become rigid and stale. Understanding others, the other elements, and the other nations, will help you become whole."

6. "Many things that seem threatening in the dark become welcoming when we shine light on them."

7. "While it is always best to believe in oneself, a little help from others can be a great blessing."

8. "Protection and power are overrated. I think you are very wise to choose happiness and love. There are reasons each of us are born. We have to find those reasons."

9. "Failure is only the opportunity to begin again. Only this time, more wisely."

10. "If you look for the light, you can often find it. But if you look for the dark, that is all you'll ever see."
Report this Content
This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
Swoon

119 People Reveal How The Pandemic Has Affected Their Love Lives, And Honestly... Relatable

"I haven't been able to get out of the 'talking phase' with anyone."

The reality is, there's no part of life the pandemic hasn't affected. Whether it's your work life, your home life, your social life, or your love life, coronavirus (COVID-19) is wreaking havoc on just about everything — not to mention people's health.

When it comes to romance, in particular, people are all handling things differently and there's no "right way" of making it through, regardless of your relationship status (single, taken, married, divorced, you name it). So, some of Swoon's creators sought out to hear from various individuals on how exactly their love lives have been affected since quarantine began.

Keep Reading... Show less
Featured

Nordstrom's Biggest Sale Has The Most Legendary Deals On Luxury Beauty Brands We've Ever Seen

Counting down the days to the Chanel box set gracing my front door.

I oftentimes (excessively) use the excuse of my job as a writer to justify my excessive spending habits.

I needed the new Huda Beauty palette before anyone else in the name of journalistic integrity. It was my job to test out the new Francis Kurkdjian fragrance to make sure I could tell people whether or not it was truly worth the splurge (it was).

Keep Reading... Show less

Listen, you can do whatever you want with your free time. It's yours to spend and you have free range. However, I hope you recognize that there are a ton of proactive things you can do right now instead of stalking your man's ex – yes, I know you do it becuase we are all guilty of it.

Take this time to research your privilege. There are always new things to learn and ways to deepen your understanding of yourself, this world, and your surroundings. We live in a multi-dimensional, ever-changing society that needs your help and your time. By that, I mean there are so many layers to each and every one of us, and with our physical, mental, spiritual, or emotional selves, we can create real, positive change.

Keep Reading... Show less
Lifestyle

Preview These Top Nordstrom Anniversary Sale 2020 Picks — From Luxury Purses To Skincare

Currently 3 million people viewing the Stella McCartney purse I absolutely must have.

Online shopping has been a guilty pleasure of ours for years, but now more than ever it's been a shopping lover's outlet for all our home redecorating projects and resort wear we're purchasing for that trip we had to cancel.

One of my favorite places to (virtually) window shop has always been Nordstrom. I admittedly can't afford to go on sprees there often, but I still get a high off of adding things to my cart I know I'll never actually end up buying. But sometimes, that's not enough — that's when I, like the masses of luxury-, beauty-, fashion-, and decor-lovers around the world count the days down to the annual Nordstrom Anniversary Sale.

Keep Reading... Show less

I remember the days where closet drinking before going to a party or bar was part of the night's itinerary. It was a requirement to have a good buzz flowing before calling the Uber to take you to that bar where you see everyone from your high school at. The pregames were the best part of the night, but it wasn't ever because of the alcohol, it was because of the atmosphere and those who were in it. The number of times I've heard "Wait, why aren't you drinking tonight? C'mon, get drunk with us" is endless, but think about it. Where were you when you were asked that? You were at the goddamn pregame and being there doesn't mean you need to be ripping shots. Being social doesn't require alcohol.

I asked 20 people how they cut back on alcohol while still being social.

Keep Reading... Show less

Whether you are quarantining away from your significant other because of coronavirus or separated by the country lines at this time, it's fair to say that long-distance relationships are tough no matter what. However, there are ways to show love from a distance whether that's through daily FaceTime calls, cute Snapchats, or sexy pics sent to them on their phone. You can brighten up their day even more with some of these unique gifts that can fit any price range and a variety of interests.

Keep Reading... Show less

Rihanna is known for many things: her music, fashion, makeup, and now skincare. As a makeup artist myself, I can confidently say that she rocked the makeup world when she released her makeup line in 2017 and has been influencing the beauty world ever since.

Trying some of her makeup products myself, I know that she doesn't skimp on quality, and even though some of her products may be a little pricey, trust me, you get what you pay for.

Keep Reading... Show less

Friends, no one needs to be reminded that the COVID-19 pandemic rages on in the U.S. Frankly, this is because we have all collectively decided not to do the one simple thing that was asked of us and wear a mask.

I could make this a very boring article, and berate you with facts and statistics and the importance of wearing a mask, but I have opted against that for both of our sakes. Instead, I will attempt to reach you in another way. You might not care about a disapproving look from me, but from Nick Miller? Maybe that will be enough to change your mind.

Keep Reading... Show less
Facebook Comments