Appa reunited with the Gaang in Avatar: The Last Airbender

Try as I Might, I Couldn’t Find Appa in ‘The Legend of Korra’

We’ve seen many familiar faces in Avatar: The Legend of Korra, including major characters who were part of Gaang (Aang’s group of friends). But among those friendly faces, someone who’s always been beside Aang was missing.

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I’m not talking about Katara, who Aang ended up with. Not even Zuko, who became one of Aang’s closest friends despite their rocky past together. No, it was Appa, who had been with Aang in the ice and all throughout Avatar: The Last Airbender, who was nowhere to be found. Contrary to popular belief, there were Sky Bisons that survived the Air Nomad Genocide. We’ve even seen some Sky Bisons under human care in The Legend of Korra, but Appa isn’t among them, even for a cameo.

The Legend of Korra doesn’t confirm Appa’s death, but it’s a popular belief that the Sky Bison had long passed with Aang himself. The circumstances of his death are unknown, but it’s also generally believed to have been a peaceful death.

We can be relieved with the knowledge that Appa isn’t the last Sky Bison, since the Bhanti people tended to many. This same breed of Sky Bisons are present in The Legend of Korra.

But one thing hasn’t changed: Sky Bisons are still endangered because of poaching by Bison rustlers. The Earth Kingdom’s elites had a particular taste for Sky Bisons and served them as exotic dishes. If Aang had heard this, he might’ve risen from the grave through the Avatar state to annihilate these Bison rustlers.

(featured image: Netflix)


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Vanessa Esguerra
Vanessa Esguerra (She/They) has been a Contributing Writer for The Mary Sue since 2023. After graduating with a Bachelor of Arts in Political Economy, she (happily) rejected law school in 2021 and has been a full-time content writer since. Vanessa is currently taking her Master's degree in Japanese Studies in hopes of deepening her understanding of the country's media culture in relation to pop culture, women, and queer people like herself. She speaks three languages but still manages to get lost in the subways of Tokyo with her clunky Japanese. Fueled by iced coffee brewed from local cafés in Metro Manila, she also regularly covers anime and video games while queuing for her next match in League of Legends.