Avatar: The Last Airbender

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Avatar: The Last Airbender is an American animated television series that aired for three seasons on Nickelodeon from 2005 to 2008. Avatar: The Last Airbender is set in an Asiatic-like world in which some people are able to manipulate the classical elements by use of psychokinetic variants of Chinese ...read more.


A true gem in not only American animation, but in storytelling as a whole.

Avatar, when it was still on the air, was one of the few television series that actually contained a storyline. Television in its current state has stooped to the level that a plurality of its shows contain close to no continuity in terms of an actual story. Each airing of a series is usually episodic or a typical "monster of the week" genre.

Avatar is intelligent, witty, adventurous, deep, and even philosophical. It takes what most see as a faulty genre (the children's animated series), and transforms it into something new that all ages are bound to love and enjoy.

Even now Avatar remains a depth defying tale of friendship, emotion, and a simply amazing source of creative action sequences that prove entertaining still whether as reruns on Nicktoons Network or on your own set of Avatar DVDs.

"The true mind can weather all the lies and illusions without being lost. The true heart can ...more

Even though I'm more of a Euro girl, I've been obsessed with anime and manga long before I even knew what Europe was! From the time I first watched it, I knew for a fact that I fell feet first in love with the show. There was always something in the episodes I enjoyed/ was interested in, if it was the characters, the storyline/plot, or just the dialogue(ex. Zuko: For the last time, I'm not playing the tsungi horn or Sokka drinking cactus juice( who would forget that). I also used to be obsessed with Spongebob, but due to this economy and the media being stuck in an uncreative rut( I believe) the show that I used to love has tragically * sighs softly and sadly* has gone crappy. And I couldn't believe my own eyes at Fairy Oddparents too had gone crappy as well when baby Poof arrived and there wasn't any need for me to watch it again because the storyline got useless and more difficult to understand. This is why I'm so ecstatic that they did a sequel series( The Legend of Korra) and it ...more

The greatest children's show of all time, bar none. There are so many things that set it apart: original and compelling story, nuanced, creative, realistic, and captivating characters, gorgeous visuals, clever and dumb humor, perfectly blended to appeal to both children and adults, and really anything else positive that one can say about a series. However, what makes it special to me is that watching it, even as a teenager, I cared. So did my middle-aged parents and my 5 year-old (at the beginning of the first season) younger sister. I cared about the characters' fates. I cared what happened to them and each one of them I either rooted for or against - or both, sometimes at the same time - passionately. No animated series has ever matched or will ever match that. There's no comparison. Also, every product or form of art ever produced will have fanboys (except maybe Vanilla Ice's music), but it speaks volumes about Avatar that - at the age of 18 - I still rewatch it every now and again ...more

Avatar is one of the most unique and amazing shows on the Nickelodeon network. Children and adults alike can find this show interesting with the adventure, complex plot, amazing individual characters. The show is great for both girls and boys of any age, with equal rights being a small point in the big picture of the complex nature of Avatar. The show is laced with interesting real world facts in addition to the fantasy themes.
On top of the above-average artwork for Nickelodeon, the soundtrack is amazing and completely enhances the Avatar experience.

Overall, the show is amazing and I will never tire of experiencing the adventure of Aang, the young and amazing Avatar. Throughout the series, you realize that the world of Avatar is a harsh one, filled with war and death (that they don't really show, but talk about if you listen well enough). Despite the harshness of the world, Aang strives to remain a 12 year old kid, and that is an aspect that makes the show so much more ...more

Avatar roots from an anime type story telling where there is a dramatic storyline. It has a beginning, middle, and end. There are characters that have amazing depth.

Spongebob roots from slap-stick comedies such as most American cartoons. It lasted a decade because episodes don't necessarily have to relate to each other. So this is why it has LASTED a decade. Avatar on the other hand, you can't add new episodes... But you can add a new story *cough* legend of Korra.

Don't get me wrong, Spongebob was definitely a good show earlier in the days. However, slap stick comedy is more for immediate pleasure versus the "anime" type story telling like Avatar. This type of story telling really brings the audience into the world is breeds really dedicated fans. You always see people "Dress up" (cosplay) as characters from Avatar at events like anime expo/comic con. You rarely see people dress up as Spongebob, except at places like Disneyland for pictures, ...more

I have some thoughts that Avatar: The Last Airbender and The Last Airbender: Legend of Korra is much more similar to Fire Emblem, EarthBound/Mother, Dragon Quest/Dragon Warrior, Final Fantasy, Pokemon (Games), Mega Man, Nintendo Wars, and Custom Robo with different protagonists and different settings in these stories. Since, Korra is the new next protagonist for the next sequel "The Last Airbender: Legend of Korra" and it have different settings for the new show and I think Korra is kinda resembles more like "Ike from Fire Emblem: Path of Radiance and Radiant Dawn" & "Lucas from Mother 3" and Aang is more like a "Marth from Fire Emblem: Shadow Dragon" & a "Ness from Earthbound/Mother 2".

And the Equalists reminds me of the "Pigmask Army from Mother 3", Amon (or Oman - incase with the spelling) reminds "The Black Knight from Fire Emblem: Path of Radiance and Radiant Dawn" & "The Mask Man from Mother ...more - King_

What can be proudly said about Avatar that cannot be said about any other show currently on Nick? That it ENDED. It was not cancelled, the plot line simply came to an amazing close. I was sad to see Aang, Sokka, Katara, Toph (and so many others) go, but happy that the creators of this show stuck to one rule of great story lines: don't draw it out!

BECAUSE this show stuck around just as long as necessary to tell an amazing tale of war, love, adventure, mysticism, and a virtually unlimited number of other themes, it has cemented itself into Nickelodeon's history of truly epic achievements, rather than lingering around for 6 years like a stray cat after it stopped being funny (not pointing any fingers). - dylangroh

In terms of the actual quality of the show (storyline, characters, development etc) Avatar is by far the greatest show Nick has ever produced. If your just looking for a show to sit for 20 minutes, chill and and laugh with out having to think, than yes, Spongebob would be a better choice however the episodic format eventually grows stale not just for cartoons but for almost every show. Without a proper storyline, shows get old real quick which is exactly what happened to spongebob. That's why I was really sad when Avatar ended because even though it was quite literally the perfect show and the 3 seasons were more than enough to tell the story, it could have continued after that so long as the creators/writes still had interesting ideas for the "life after." You could tell that the creators weren't looking for a show that would lose its quality due to pumping out seasons just for the sake of it (like spongebob), but it would have been nice if they continued the show. It's a win win, ...more

I understand why others are disappointed that Avatar is number one, while older classic Nickelodeon shows are below it on rankings. HOWEVER, Avatar is genius, and is rightfully at the number one spot. I am old enough so that I have seen older Nickelodeon shows as well as newer ones, and even after consistently watching shows like Doug, Hey Arnold, Rugrats, etc. I still enjoy Avatar the most. It has it all! An amazing plot line which is consistent (I watched the show from the premiere to the finale on Netflix, all episodes were fantastic), cool characters who you grow to love, action, romance, you name it. Its Asian cultural influence is very accurate and as such makes it even more interesting. While I'm glad they only ran it three seasons so there would be no decline, I'm actually sad there are no more episodes :(. I'd go as far to say Avatar is my favorite show period.

The last airbender is THE GREATEST T.V SHOW OF ALL TIME PERIOD and deserves to be #1. And don't get me wrong, SpongeBob has had a HUGE impact on our generation and has become a timeless cartoon icon right up there with bugs bunny and Mickey Mouse, but with the newer SpongeBob episodes were getting now and not to mention that horrible sponge out of water movie SpongeBob should be number 7 at best. The world and adventure that avatar created was breath taking you remember all the characters all the troubles and rough times they went through and not a single episode falls short. It has beautiful animation, beautiful scenery and over all is way better than SpongeBob nowadays. A good T.V. show needs to be something that is timeless, something that you can watch ten years later and still be enjoyable. SpongeBob WAS timeless for the first 6 years and then it just became mindless to shut up your six year old for a few hours. As much as I will always love SpongeBob and the amazing effect it ...more

You wanna know what this show had that set it apart from all the other shows I was watching at the time? Depth. Every one of the main characters (and even some of the side ones) had a well thought out character arc. The characters you meet in episode one are not the same people when you finish the last book, they have grown and changed both as warriors and as people. I think that's what I liked about the show the most because a lot of the other shows I watched consisted of the same characters with the same personalities every episode. They were just stagnant characters who never underwent any development, and I was at the point where I was starting to want more from the shows I watched but wasn't ready to start watching adult television yet. For Me Avatar was a breathe of fresh air. A thrilling ride from start to finish and my favorite Nickelodeon show of all time.

Great Nickelodeon shows get overshadowed by some of the mindless comedies that they attempt to spur out, but instead over saturate the whole channel. If many people want bits of mindless comedy, it is in this show. If people also want a compelling story, interesting characters, layered plot lines that never feel forced, important social commentaries along with that mindless (and often times in THIS show, clever) comedy then watch this show. SpongeBob has a legacy that has a deep history that spawned important influences, but, nostalgia should not be a deciding factor in a show's achievements. A show's grading on a top ten list like this should be based off of what said show left on the screen for the viewers to see, not what it created off the screen. While SpongeBob's longevity is impressive, it ultimately hurts it as it never gives the viewer satisfaction on a consistent basis as many episodic arcs of the show, that may or may not have been too bad to make into full seasons, are ...more

I believe Avatar is THE greatest show made since Rugrats. It has themes that can be understood by children to adults. There's so much to love about the show and the plot is simply beautiful. It shows the hero's journey with a twist of some supernatural powers of bending the elements and tapping into the spirit world.

What I love most is that the characters have depth to them. People are not simply portrayed as good or bad, but rather have a dynamic personality. It shows the characters being human and ultimately teaches us about ourselves.

I highly recommend this show. I have followed Nickelodeon since I was a little boy and I'm nineteen now STILL re-watching Avatar episodes. There is no episode I don't like. Simply fantastic.

This show has something a lot of the other shows don't. Quality. The main characters actually set a good example for kids, and the show reveals several powerful and wise messages about life. It doesn't encourage violence, and those who say it does haven't watched it. The main character is kind of a pacifist. Vegetarian goodie-two-shoes go-lucky kid who has fun and looks to the bright side of things. THAT'S a better roe-model than, for example, Sam Puckett from Icarly.
Now, though I voted this as the best show, it was closely tied with the following:
Drake & Josh
Hey Arnold
And, the ORIGINAL SpongeBob. (Not the crud they make today. )

Sad to say, but all in all, Nickelodeon was great. The old shows were spectacular, heart warming, and a joy to watch.
Now it's just... It's just sad to see everything I loved about Nickelodeon chucked in the garbage.

Probably the best animated series that Nickelodeon will ever get to broadcast. Avatar has everything a good T.V. show needs: action, comedy, adventure, romance and even drama. The characters are perfect and each has it's unique personality and abilities. We experience a wonderful plot and enjoy the story of our young protagonists as they encounter many conflicts and other antagonists on their way to saving the world. Avatar is suitable for both kids and adults, which makes it even a better series- parents can enjoy the legend along with their children.
Furthermore, Avatar has gained more success as the Legend of Korra is now being broadcasted, and comic books were being released after the show ended and are still being written these days.
Avatar is definitely my favorite series ever and it will always be. I'm proud to be part of the Avatar fandom and looking forward to experiencing more from Avatar!

While SpongeBob SquarePants is one of my favorite comedy shows of all time, it had a HUGE seasonal rot in Season 4 onward. Most people say Season 9 is getting better, but if that's the case, they haven't seen Squid Baby and/or Little Yellow Book, some of the worst episodes.

So, do you know what IS objectively the best Nickelodeon show (in terms of quality, writing, characters, arcs, etc.)? Avatar. I wish this had been a tied spot with Legend of Korra (because Legend of Korra is something I consider to be a part of Avatar). Some people say this show had a seasonal rot in Season 3, but I don't really see where they're coming from.

The ONLY episode I didn't like was The Great Divide, which, like PhantomStrider had said, is only bad by Avatar standards, and those standards are so high only cartoons like Old SpongeBob, Invader Zim, Steven Universe, Adventure Time, Johnny Bravo, Gravity Falls, Teen Titans, Samurai Jack, and, of course, Legend of Korra can reach.

Avatar ...more

I first watched this show when I was in elementary school and still watch it going into my freshman year of college. It is not just a kid's show; it is for all ages and all creeds. War, violence, dictatorship, corruption, prejudice, death, love, happiness, family, friends, diversity, and more are all jammed into this amazing T.V. show. It keeps you on your toes and truly develops unique and evolving characters. I find myself in each of them and even the villain sometimes.

As a film student, I look to this series as a reminder animation is endless and gorgeous. The use of cinematic tools is different from the rest of the animated shows on Nickelodeon. The creators and animators worked extremely hard to make each episode have depth and meaning to its frames. Telling an amazing story within 22 minutes is challenge for the best of storytellers. Having complex stories and themes makes it even harder but it comes across clearly and beautifully.

I love this series and will ...more

Avatar is the best because of a lot of things. One, it is very very cool because of all the elements and stuff. Two, the story is very meaningful. The story doesn't go straight forward. Things characters learn, can also teach us a lesson. For example, General Iroh always teaches Prince Zuko about life, and he just doesn't listen, but then he learns how important the words were, and we also learn. Although there is also romance in the story, it shows us what love can really be, not just dumping your boyfriend and trying to get him back. Three, It is extremely funny. Unlike most other stories, the funny stuff actually has an influence to the story and character growth, it becomes who they are. I know there are a lot of things that make Avatar the best, but just, it is the best!

Amazing storyline, plot, the effects it really blew my mind away! And I'm still big Avatar fans until these day.
I mean how could people thinking something about bending air water earth or fire? And the Avatar's world? It's the most crazy idea I've ever heard but it also fantastic!
I also a huge fans of Kataang. I love their story from the moment they met in iceberg until the most romantic finale scene I ever watch! I love the music too
Ahh you guys have no idea how much I love this show. I like Spongebob too, but Spongebob era is over guys. It's to replace it with new show with new fresh idea.

Once during my Turkish class my teacher made us watch the first episode. Everybody was angry and thought it was boring, but I kept on watching it since there was nothing to do. I didn't realize how good it was remembering that I used to watch it with my brothers when I was a kid. So I kept on waking up at midnight to watch all the other episodes in order so that I can finish it off because we stopped watching it in class, because of everybody who hated it. When I finished all the seasons, I was so happy and relieved because it was finally over. It was a great show. I started dreaming that I was a bender. I started browsing on the internet and read more about the avatar and found avatar.wiki, a sight just about the show. But then I started to see that their was another version of the avatar that came after the last air bender named Korra. So I started watching that.

Anyone who doesn't like Avatar has never seen it. It is PERFECT, and that's not just an exaggeration. I dare any hater to go watch the whole show, every episode and just TRY to point out what's wrong with it. There is nothing, everything about it works and is perfect. The characters, the comedy, the love, and the emotional art attachment to every character. Sponge bob can be funny, but that's really it. I laugh every time I watch avatar and still just LOVE to get the story of it. I could watch this show over and over and never get bored of it, whereas with most other shows, like SpongeBob, her old quickly. Avatar is a MASTERPIECE and deserves to be at number 1.

This is the best show that has ever been made. It is kid-friendly yet adults can watch it too. It has such realistic, original, and memorable characters, who are deeply explored. Every character has some sort of past (usually relating to the war) that made them the person they are today. There is so much emotional involvement in Avatar, plus it is in such a mature setting (a war and even a genocide for God's sake) but it is presented in a way so that kids can watch it, learn from it, and still be entertained. The plot is so interesting, with many twists and turns. I just love Avatar! It will always hold a special place in my heart...

Avatar is definitely a show that well deserves a place at the top. It is completely three dimensional: not only does it feature groundbreaking animation in American cartoons, it encompasses a wealthy variety of topics and themes that are explored through every part of the Avatar world. This show approaches politics, culture, and philosophy in an entertaining and easy to grasp way that young and old can both delight in. Even sideline characters have a depth to them that makes them relatable. This show is nothing short of a masterpiece for Nickelodeon and I can't wait to see what the next installment has in store for us.

Avatar: The Last Airbender was the epitome of my childhood. Many other cartoons, such as SpongeBob Squarpants, though somewhat entertaining, made me feel like I had about 2 brain cells. So, though SpongeBob was good to watch on some occasions, I feel as if Avatar always had my attention 100% of the time. Because even 6 years after the finale, I'm still finding things I didn't notice before. Avatar captivates kids through fun adventures, romance, comedy and action. It has everything. And the advanced character designs are both unique in terms of looks and way of thought. Each character was planned out so well with so much backstory and so much development that a lot of the fanbase are actually adults. The universe that Mike and Bryan (the co-creators of Avatar) created was so in depth, original and unique that even today, it competes with some of the world's best created universes. And to me, it is by far the most interesting. Finally, the animation always astounded me. From the ...more

I have a secret soft spot for Avatar! I began watching it in second grade, and I immediately loved it. The plot is beautifully written and emotional, the characters are well made and you can really see them develop (Zuko, for instance), and the animation is just pleasing to the eye. It's a really well made show, and THE BEST show ever on Nickelodeon. SpongeBob? That's always been cheesy and boring, even the older episodes. I'll admit, it can get a chuckle out of me, and I especially liked Band Geeks, but it's really not my type of show. Avatar, on the other hand, is Nickelodeon's masterpiece. One day, I'd like to see the voters on this list regain common sense and vote for Avatar until it's number one.