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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Master of four elements
Most western animation for children is, to put it simply, really wretched. At best, it's tolerable.

But a shining exception would be the tale of the Avatar of all four elements, and to restore the balance in the world. "Avatar The Last Airbender - Book 1" serves as a solid first season to this series, with its colourful world, vivid action and complex...
Published on May 16 2010 by E. A Solinas

versus
2.0 out of 5 stars Broken
The plastic things that hold the disc into its case were broken. It shipped with two discs shuffling around freely inside, which resulted in them getting scratched. I was quite embarrassed because it was a gift.
Published 9 months ago by Janine Esplin


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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Master of four elements, May 16 2010
By 
EA Solinas "ea_solinas" (MD USA) - See all my reviews
(HALL OF FAME)    (TOP 50 REVIEWER)   
Most western animation for children is, to put it simply, really wretched. At best, it's tolerable.

But a shining exception would be the tale of the Avatar of all four elements, and to restore the balance in the world. "Avatar The Last Airbender - Book 1" serves as a solid first season to this series, with its colourful world, vivid action and complex characters. It may be aimed at kids, but it's a solid enough series to be enjoyed by any age.

South Pole Water Tribe siblings Katara and Sokka stumble across a glowing iceberg, with a young Airbender boy named Aang (and his flying bison) sealed inside. All Airbenders were killed long ago by the Fire Nation -- and Aang is the Avatar who mysteriously vanished a century ago, and is the only hope against the Fire Nation.

Unfortunately, a Fire Nation prince named Zuko has been wandering the world in search of Aang, and agrees to let the Water Tribe alone if Aang surrenders. Katara and Sokka manage to rescue their friend, and since Katara isn't experienced enough in waterbending to teach Aang, they set out for the North Pole to find a waterbending master -- with Zuko and his cruel rival Admiral Zhao in hot pursuit.

Along the way, they encounter hurricanes, woman warriors, a loopy old king who seems very familiar, a Spirit World Beast, pirates, teenage rebels, two tribes locked in an eternal feud, a mysterious blue masked man, fortunetellers, a rogue Firebender, and an Air Temple turned into a steampunk city. But when they arrive at the north pole, Aang and his friends find that their time is running out...

The highest compliment I can pay "Avatar: The Last Airbender" is that it's like a thoroughly solid action/fantasy anime. It's graced with good writing, excellent animation, and a general look drawn from Asian and Inuit cultures -- not to mention different civilizations clashing against the steampunky armored tanks and ships of the Fire Nation.

That isn't to say that it's all grim and serious -- it's quite the opposite. Lots of amusing dialogue ("I'm too young to die!" "I'm not, but I still don't wanna!"), slapstick, and flashy fights involving eruptions of fire, swirling water and blasts of air. It all culminates in a brilliantly epic clash, which wraps up the season nicely while leaving the way open for Aang's next lessons.

Aang is a kind and selfless kid, but still a kid -- plenty of turmoil over his role as the Avatar and his past mistakes, but he's still down-to-earth and sometime spacey. Katara and Sokka make good companions -- a sensible, short-fused girl with waterbending powers, and her reckless, courageous brother. And though he's technically a villain, the scarred, exiled prince Zuko is a brilliant anti-hero. And his lovably pervy uncle Iroh makes for good comic relief ("I'm certain you bathe regularly"), but there are hints that he's much more than that.

The special edition is being released in time for the live-action adaptation, and it adds a sleek blue "book" case with silver detailing. There are going to be seven discs instead of the usual six, with extra stuff -- an exclusive documentary, a paperback companion for artwork and designs, and so on. This could be worth it if you're just discovering "Avatar," but I wouldn't advise buying it if you already have the regular "Book 1."

"Avatar The Last Airbender: The Complete Book 1" has a few initial wobbles, but quickly blossoms into a brilliant little show. Definitely worth seeing.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A Great Show, Jan. 25 2011
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This review is from: Avatar The Last Airbender - The Complete Book 1 Collection (DVD)
Avatar: The Last Airbender is an amazing series created by Nickelodeon. Copying the artistic styles from Japan, Avatar manages to tell an amazing story of a boy, Aang, who needs to save the world from an evil tyrant (the Fire Lord). Throughout this journey he meets many people, some who become his allies and others who will become his enemies. In this part of the series, Aang must learn the power of waterbending and must travel to the North while facing many challenges.

Although the story has a basic premise it still manages to be extremely unique due to the charming and endearing characters. Aang is joined by many people, two of whom (Katara and Sokka) become his traveling allies during his journey to defeat the Fire Lord. Throughout their journey, they all learn to depend on one another and often the witty dialogue between the three of them is the main source of comedy. Aang is also being hunted by the Fire Lord's son, Zuko, who while has evil intentions, is still a very well-rounded character whom we feel for.

Many people in the world of Avatar have unique powers that allow them to move the elements of the world (water, wind, fire, earth). Aang is the last being who can bend the element of air (and thus the name airbender) but he is also the Avatar, a being who has the power to learn all four elements. Each element is presented differently and is very noticeable when they fight (earthbenders are more sturdy and powerful while waterbenders rely on flow and fluid movement). The fight scenes are amazing in Avatar and it is very obvious that the animators have spent time studying the fighting styles each characters uses.

While I find Avatar: The Last Airbender to be and amazing series, I didn't give the box set a perfect score for a few reasons. Although the box set includes a few extra bonus features, like commentaries from the cast and creators, and a few short videos about how they created the concept, there isn't a subtitle option. I know this may seem a bit petty in comparison but the subtitles are something that should be automatically included in every DVD/Bluray movie/tv series. Subtitles also many be needed for the viewer.

With a few things lacking in the box set, I find that overall Avatar: The Last Airbender to be an amazing series that needs to be watched.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Discovering a masterpiece., Aug. 14 2007
By 
Valerie Gravel "Electrastar" (Quebec, Canada.) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
I have to admit that when I saw television commercials of "Avatar: The Last Airbender", I didn't think much of it. I though to myself:"Another atempt at "American Anime""
Well, I kept hearing more and more about it on the Internet, rave reviews and massive fandom...my interest grew.
I finally decided to buy the boxset, and mind you, I do not regret it (even if I feel the price is a little high).
Avatar is an instant hit. Fans of martial arts movies and fantasy buffs alike will like this title. Its just fun to see the story and its characters evolve from episode to episode. It's an epic "quest" to save the world, and even if has been done before, this one has its own orignal twist with a world all of its own based on ancient China.
Great animation, which is surprising for an American title (must be because all the animating took place in Korea). The voice acting and music are well done too.
Adults and children alike will like this series. I'm 24 (soon to be 25) and I own all of the dvds that have been released to date and I am eagerly awaiting the release of Book III-Fire-Volume-1
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good, April 23 2012
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Avatar The Last Airbender - The Complete Book 1 Collection (DVD)
Just some extra info.

It was delivered on time, it was brand new and in a cardboard box and basically there is a thick cover for the DVDs (as shown above). I pulled the DVD case (nicely drawn Avatar theme on it)out of the cover. The case was presented like a brochure (folded) and it had 6 DVDs inside, each one with its own spot, the 6 DVDs neatly overlapping each other. Each one has different characters/images on them.
I played the DVD's on my HD DVD player and it was slightly blurry (very hard to notice this). But I played it on regular DVD players (sony, htech) and it was perfect.
The sound (sufficiently loud) and picture quality (clear) was great. I liked the menu that appeared at the beginning. Each DVD has short, extra behind-the-scenes info. and has 4 episodes in it, with the opening theme and ending song for each episode.

The storyline is nice, it's a cute, funny series with just the right amount of action. My younger siblings love watching it together. I feel like learning martial arts when I watch it with them.
Btw, I also bought the 3rd DVD volume from amazon and it is equally satisfying. Hope this review was helpful.
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9 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Master of four elements, June 5 2009
By 
EA Solinas "ea_solinas" (MD USA) - See all my reviews
(HALL OF FAME)    (TOP 50 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: Avatar The Last Airbender - The Complete Book 1 Collection (DVD)
Most western animation for children is, to put it simply, really wretched. At best, it's tolerable.

But a shining exception would be the tale of the Avatar of all four elements, and to restore the balance in the world. "Avatar The Last Airbender - Book 1" serves as a solid first season to this series, with its colourful world, vivid action and complex characters. It may be aimed at kids, but it's a solid enough series to be enjoyed by any age.

South Pole Water Tribe siblings Katara and Sokka stumble across a glowing iceberg, with a young Airbender boy named Aang (and his flying bison) sealed inside. All Airbenders were killed long ago by the Fire Nation. You guessed it (and so does Katara): Aang is the Avatar who mysteriously vanished a century ago, and is the only hope against the Fire Nation. And, uh, he's a total goofball.

Unfortunately, a Fire Nation prince named Zuko has been wandering the world in search of Aang, and agrees to let the Water Tribe alone if Aang surrenders. Of course, Katara and Sokka set out to rescue their friend, and since Katara isn't experienced enough in waterbending to teach Aang how to do it, they set out for the North Pole to find a waterbending master.

Along the way, the three friends encounter hurricanes, woman warriors, a loopy old king who seems very familiar, Aang's ruined temple, a Spirit World Beast, a waterbending scroll, pirates, teenage rebels, two tribes locked in an eternal feud, a mysterious man in a blue mask, fortunetellers, a rogue Firebender, and an Air Temple turned into a steampunk palace.

But through the journey, Aang is confronted by the vast changes from the last century, and they are constantly attacked by the desperate Zuko, and his arrogant rival General Zhao. And when they arrive at the icy citadel at the North Pole, Aang finds that saving his friends may be far more difficult than he expected...

The highest compliment I can pay "Avatar: The Last Airbender" is that it's like a thoroughly solid action/fantasy anime, with lots of elemental fights. Though it starts off on a typical quest, it's graced with good writing, excellent animation, and a general look drawn from Asian and Inuit cultures.

Though most of "Book 1: Water" is made up of one-episode stories, the writers nevertheless weave subplots through it. The world itself is a simple but well-realized one, with different civilizations clashing against the steampunky armored tanks and ships of the Fire Nation. Assassinations, captures, escapes and spiritual journeys are all interwoven into this story.

That isn't to say that it's all grim and serious -- it's quite the opposite. Lots of amusing dialogue ("I'm too young to die!" "I'm not, but I still don't wanna!"), slapstick, and flashy fights involving eruptions of fire, swirling water and blasts of air. It all culminates in a brilliantly epic clash, which wraps up the season nicely while leaving the way open for Aang's next lessons.

And they do a good job with the characters -- Aang is a kind and selfless kid, but still a kid. He has plenty of inner guilt and turmoil over his role as the Avatar and his past mistakes, but is still down-to-earth enough to tell an amazed fortune-teller, "Yeah, yeah, I knew that already. But did it say anything about a girl?" Katara and Sokka make good companions -- a sensible, short-fused girl with waterbending powers, and her rather reckless, courageous brother.

And though technically the antagonist, scarred teenager Zuko also is worthy of note -- as the series winds on, we see how desperate he is to regain his lost honor, and the horrible event that led to his exile. He's the exact opposite of the nasty, proud Zhao -- and his lovably pervy uncle Iroh makes for good comic relief ("I'm certain you bathe regularly"), but there are hints that he's much more than that.

"Avatar The Last Airbender: The Complete Book 1" has a few initial wobbles, but quickly blossoms into a brilliant little show. Definitely worth seeing.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Wholesome, quirky, dramatic, multilayered, intriguing, family fun., June 15 2015
This review is from: Avatar The Last Airbender - The Complete Book 1 Collection (DVD)
We all recently watched the movie version of series 1 and wanted MORE Avatar, but the movies are not being made fast enough to satisfy us. Then I remembered watching the animated series when the kids were babies.

We have just finished watching this animated series 1 as a family that includes 9 and 8 year olds.

It is a quirky show with modern humour embedded in a story with an ancient times atmosphere. For example, jokes about Boomerangs and Kangaroo Island were uttered. The story pre-dates the world-wide discovery of these things, but it doesn’t matter. It is all in good fun, the kids understand it, and laugh out loud a lot. It engages us adults as well. The kids get excited when they recognize the elements of the story adopted by the movie, and the changes interest them without disappointing them.

It is a bit of an adjustment at first, because the characters and mood differ slightly to the movie, which was rather serious and dramatic. I don’t recall the movie Avatar boy smiling at all. The animated Avatar cracks jokes and makes childish mistakes (as he should, since he is a child). And Sokka is a bit of a buffoon in the animated series, but we watched him growing and transforming with each adventure from immature boy to warrior like the one in the movie.

The rating given is my children’s, but my husband and I wholeheartedly agree with it. If you want an adventure that builds up in complex layers that are intriguing to young and old, you’ll get that here. It is serious and peppered with clever and some slap-stick humour that pleases all.

Series 1 is about Water. Can’t wait to see series 2 about Earth. This is not part of any Hollywood movie I know of yet, so it will all be surprising and new.

I highly recommend this series.
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5.0 out of 5 stars 5 STARS, April 22 2014
By 
Sofie (Canada) - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: Avatar The Last Airbender - The Complete Book 1 Collection (DVD)
Avatar, like many cartoons (*cough* Totally Spies *cough*) tries to make itself look like an anime. Usually when cartoons do this, they end up looking like wannabes. But Avatar does an amazing job of getting inspiration from anime and the Japanese and Chinese cultures. If Avatar actually *were* an anime, it would be my second favourite after InuYasha.

I was watching TV at my Baba's (grandmother) place when Avatar was introduced to the public for the very first time (at least in Canada.) I believe I was 12 at the time. They introduced Avatar with a special two-episode preview. I couldn't tear my eyes from the screen. Not since InuYasha had an animated TV show grabbed my attention, killed me with curiosity and made me care about the characters so much in just episodes. Avatar is an amazing animated series. By far one of the best to ever be created by the Western World. The plot, the story, the adventures, the characters, the travelling, the humour, the heart-break...it's perfect. I absolutely love this show and recommend it to anyone who loves anime.

Favourite Characters: Aang and Zuko
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4.0 out of 5 stars Great family entertainment., April 14 2014
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This review is from: Avatar The Last Airbender - The Complete Book 1 Collection (DVD)
I'm a grown adult, and yet Avatar: The Last Airbender is one of my favorite series ever.

The storyline is quite simplistic, but it serves its purpose nicely, allowing for a lot of fun to happen.

The music is good, the voice acting is nice and the overall feeling is that of feel-good entertainment. The animation is a bit on the low side at times, which isn't surprising considering this was only the first season and the producers had a rather small budget.

The storyline isn't perfect, as it sometimes tend to fire up in all directions at the same time. Some episodes are excellent, some are okay, and the whole thing would've been better if there was a stronger link between them. The storyline is pretty episodic in the first season, to say the least: Aang and Team Avatar go into a village and solve a problem, then moves on to another village and help other people, and so on.

What really makes this series shine is its funny dialogue. Often wacky, the humor in Avatar relies on the great lines characters toss at each other. The relationship between Katara and Sokka is especially funny, and Sokka himself is a funny guy altogether. Add in Aang, Appa and Momo tossing in their funny lines or moves, and you got yourself a nice comedy show.

Things get more structured from half season and beyond, so the series do improve as it progresses.

All things considered, great series!
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5.0 out of 5 stars Captivating, Feb. 6 2013
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This review is from: Avatar The Last Airbender - The Complete Book 1 Collection (DVD)
What more can I say that other reviewers haven't already. Personally, I absolutely love this entire series. The variety of tones for each episode is exciting. Some episodes are deep with meaning, others are creepy, while still others are big, goofy,fun & even funny. The story arc from start to finish is captivating with a satisfying finish that doesn't leave you with your eyes rolled up in to your head.

Each of the main characters have immensely satisfying personal journeys (good and bad). Oh, & did I mention the fight/bending sequences are mesmerizing & occasionally spectacular to watch? This show was clearly made by people who cared very deeply for this entire world. There is so much thought & imagination that goes in to every detail. The story's unique, but is kept refreshingly simple & resists the urge to throw too much lore at the viewer. Above all the hype, I found the most appealing part of this show to be the characters and their relationships with each other. One could look at this show as one great big colourful, well written book.
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5.0 out of 5 stars First Season Review, July 12 2010
This review is from: Avatar The Last Airbender - The Complete Book 1 Collection (DVD)
Ever since I completed this series I knew that I would be purchasing it for rewatching purposes. This series has amazingly fleshed out characters with believable motivations who evolve believably throughout the series, is brilliant and introducing natural moments of humor and most importantly has continuity that builds on itself and really sets this universe apart even among other well written shows (comparably in my mind to Terry Pratchett's Discworld.)

This first book sets the foundation for the other two, and while I prefer the last two seasons more as the characters have mastered more interesting skills, I can see myself rewatching this season many times.
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