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Question: Rate this episode:
10 - 150 (48.9%)
9 - 72 (23.5%)
8 - 55 (17.9%)
7 - 18 (5.9%)
6 - 10 (3.3%)
5 - 0 (0%)
4 - 1 (0.3%)
3 - 0 (0%)
2 - 0 (0%)
1 - 1 (0.3%)
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Author Topic: [214] City of Walls and Secrets  (Read 46315 times)
Shi Len
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« Reply #375 on: Dec 06, 2010 01:23 am »

^^ The overall concept of the conspiracy was to keep talk about war out of the city to maintain order. As long feng stated the war seemed pretty much endless and talking about it will bring nothing chaos and panic to the city. Long Feng wanted to preserve ba sing se as a "utopia" and talks about such conflict would hinder that. As for what makes the dai li so fightening well other than being the best earthbenders not named bumi or toph, they are extremely skilled and poweful. Also they enforce the orders of long feng and seem to be very good at making people/things disappear. On 2 the minor gov't official, since he is a part of their gov't he obviously knows whats going on to an extent which is y he warned them. The brainwashing is most likely a silencing method and a way to indirectly influence people, i.e. jet and joo dee. As for why it's creepy and serious we learn talking about the war is forbidden, the king is a figurehead, long feng runs the city, and we see what happens to people who talk about the war
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Boosflash
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« Reply #376 on: Dec 06, 2010 10:37 pm »

ohhh, I see.i need to watch that episode again. thank you so much captain...that's kinda freaky.
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Shi Len
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« Reply #377 on: Dec 07, 2010 03:56 pm »

^ No problem.
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storytime7
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« Reply #378 on: Dec 16, 2010 08:15 pm »

It was a great episode, but probably the creepiest episode of season 2 (maybe even of the whole series). The only part of this episode I didn't like was how obsessed Jet was over trying to prove they were firebenders (although the fight scene was great).

9/10 A-
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Toph13139
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« Reply #379 on: Dec 17, 2010 12:59 pm »

Man, I completely forgot about this episode. This is a ten, dude... A whole, well-rounded ten. For once, Avatar felt like the mature show it could've been... Hmm, let me rephrase that... Avatar could've worked excellently as a mature show, but it did amazingly well as it was. The whole brainwashing thing was extremely creepy... And I love brainwashing. Especially when it is brainwashing for political advancement. "There is no war in Ba Sing Se".... Sure as hell I'm getting a tattoo with that phrase, man. That sentence gives me goose-bumps.

@ Shi Len: Good to know you like this one. =)
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Boosflash
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« Reply #380 on: Dec 17, 2010 01:47 pm »

new question: if there are such strong divisions between different economic classes in ba sing se then how was long feng able to "be born with nothing and claw his way to power"? if that's the case then shoudln't the guy who tried to rob iroh be able to run for earth king assistant? i just dont understand how long fengs rise to power is possible given his background check from azula.
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The Pebble
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« Reply #381 on: Dec 17, 2010 04:00 pm »

^There was fanart somewhere that summed up Long Feng's rise to power pretty great...I'll see if I can find it for you later.

Anyway, I figure Long Feng started with nothing, but he was skilled and/or got a great education somehow.  Then he joined the Dai Li and moved up in rank quickly.  Then the Earth King before Kuei died, but Kuei was, like, four or something. xD  So Long Feng was put in charge until Kuei was old enough...Long Feng was sort of his adviser.  ...Think Wormtongue from Lord of the Rings.

Basically he started with nothing but worked hard until he had everything.  Perhaps in Ba Sing Se all you need is money to "switch rings" so to say...and perhaps his family came into some money?

Sorry if that wasn't very helpful! xD  I'm mostly speculating myself...

Here's his wiki page, that might be of some help. Tongue
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Boosflash
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« Reply #382 on: Dec 17, 2010 07:33 pm »

oh..i see. but i heard dai litty's were chosen at a very young age or at birth. besides, i didn't think it would  be as easy as "I used to be poor poverty man  but then i came into some money, now i'm upper ring man!"

Thats not to in any way under mine or unnaccept your proposal captain.I freakin love it. It makes perfect sense, i just didnt think it would be that easy. Tongue Cool Grin
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« Reply #383 on: Dec 17, 2010 07:37 pm »

Yeah, Long Feng would do well with his own little backstory telling us exactly how he did it...  xP
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« Reply #384 on: Dec 17, 2010 08:04 pm »

ahh...I see. here we go.

The tale of Long Feng: Once upon a-

 "Hey, wait, who's that little kid in rags asking for food? could that...no, it couldn't be..."

"...Longy wongy? is that really you?"
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Toph13139
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« Reply #385 on: Dec 17, 2010 11:49 pm »

Think of Zuko and Iroh when they first arrived to Ba Sing Se. They were mere refugees, dudes with nothing. Then, because of Iroh's tea-making talent, he got a shot to get his own store at the upper ring. Plus, the men who gave Iroh the opportunity said clearly that "it was said that this was the best tea in the city" so I don't think there was such strong economic division.
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Shi Len
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« Reply #386 on: Dec 18, 2010 11:53 pm »

^ completely agree, if you have a great skill you can easily move up in the city. Katara could have easily became a nurse with her healing and sokka could have be a comedian with his humor.
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ld80061
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« Reply #387 on: Sep 26, 2011 07:43 am »

A year-old reply, to bump up a great episode:

Quote
new question: if there are such strong divisions between different economic classes in ba sing se then how was long feng able to "be born with nothing and claw his way to power"? if that's the case then shoudln't the guy who tried to rob iroh be able to run for earth king assistant? i just dont understand how long fengs rise to power is possible given his background check from azula.

Ba Sing Se is an interesting setup. It's very business/corporate/capitalistic, so people who work hard and have a great idea to make money can definitely get up in the world. Remember how Iroh 's talent rapidly drew the attention of Big Money? Craftsmen, "people who work with their hands" are cut out to the lower parts of the city, but financial professionals get the middle section and the Wealthy and Powerful enjoy the best of the city.

Refugees are directed to the lowest part of the city, as they are typically penniless. But if they have the ability to make money, they can get out pretty quickly.

"Ba Sing Se has many walls. There are the ones outside, protecting us, and the ones inside, to help maintain order." - Joo De, who incidentally is part of the "flesh and blood" walls, for those outside. The initial delay to see the king - 6-8 weeks - is also part of the invisible walls.

***

"This city is a prison. I don't want to make a life here."
"Life happens wherever you are. Whenever you make it or not. Now come on - I found us some new jobs, and we start this afternoon.."

Iroh is a cartoon character who is far wiser than many flesh-and-blood people.

Anyways, the comprehensive security, the bureaucracy, the rules, and the secret service - along with the hard-core capitalism - is reminiscent of more than one famous East Asian government. Control of the masses and the protection of the leadership is the name of the game. If you don't challenge the Elite, life can be very comfortable indeed. (But very boring, if like Toph you want to make a difference)

**************************************
**************************************

OK, that's the main storyline, and a very sophisticated one for a audience of children. I wish I had this when I was 10-12.

But for me, the secondary storyline, the tragedy of Jet, is more moving. He knew that he needed a fresh start, he knew that he had to let go of the past, but his hatred drove him so hard, that he just couldn't leave well enough alone. Even with the support of his close friends, he couldn't break the chains.

But what sealed his doom was when he confused the reasons for a fresh start with the reasons for starting the Freedom Fighters.

"Maybe you've forgotten why we need to start over. Maybe you've forgotten how the Firenation left us all homeless, how they wiped out all the people we love?"

These are the reasons for STARTING his vendetta. When he confused them with the reasons for going to Ba Sing Se, he lost touch with his new self, and returned to the old self, the comfortable set of beliefs that were killing him.

And in the end, they did kill him.



PS: I like My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic too - good characterization, etc - but Lauren Faust wasn't allowed to develop the arc-based storyline you need to really build a world, as was given to Avatar. The limitations set by her producers stunts MLP: FiM's potential. Eventually, though, I believe that she will be given the freedom she needs to really build a world.

It will be interesting to see if she can top Avatar's excellence. She has the drive and the raw talent to make a really good challenge for Avatar's place at the top of the Western pecking order of Anime Western Cartoons.
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version15
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« Reply #388 on: Dec 18, 2013 07:36 pm »

I liked this episode because it showed a sometimes chilling, interesting reality of bah sing seh.
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« Reply #389 on: Jul 04, 2014 02:48 am »

Just rewatched this again. The last minutes are always so chilling. In particular it's one of the lines from the brainwashing that gets to me.

"Here we are safe, here we are free".

* shivvers *
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« Reply #390 on: Jul 05, 2014 06:18 pm »

Just rewatched this again. The last minutes are always so chilling. In particular it's one of the lines from the brainwashing that gets to me.

"Here we are safe, here we are free".

* shivvers *

Like it is amazing how long it has been since it first aired, yet it still remains a classic. I'm telling you Book 2 of ATLA was G.O.A.T. Like the way they juggled multiple story arcs was INSANE.
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« Reply #391 on: Jul 05, 2014 10:57 pm »

^Yeah.

Book 2 was done so well, stringing the story together across multiple episodes, that I was disappointed when the first half of Book 3 went back to the more episodic format of Book 1.
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« Reply #392 on: Jul 09, 2014 09:32 pm »

I loved this episode. The entire conspiracy surrounding Ba Sing Se on top of the development we saw from the Gaang during the search for Appa made it one of my all-time favorites. I think it was one of the best-paced and best-written ep's of any show I've ever seen. Cheesy
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« Reply #393 on: Aug 17, 2014 10:20 pm »

This episode is so chilling and incredible. It introduces the Dai Li and their nefarious leader, Long Feng. And of course, we get to see breathtaking Ba Sing Se in all its glory!

An alternate title for this episode is actually "The Secret of Ba Sing Se".
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« Reply #394 on: Sep 18, 2014 07:50 am »

This is my favourite Episode from book 2! I love Katara and Toph's fancy Dresses!
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« Reply #395 on: Oct 09, 2014 01:17 am »

I was just thinking the other day: why the heck didn't Long Feng just give the Avatar back his bison? If he'd have done so, the gaang would have left BSS quickly and the Earth King would have been none the wiser to their presence, nor to the fact that he was a puppet for the Dai Li. WHY, LONG FENG? WHY?
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« Reply #396 on: Oct 09, 2014 01:18 am »

Long Feng didn't have Appa at the time he first met the gaang.
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« Reply #397 on: Oct 11, 2014 10:17 pm »

Long Feng didn't have Appa at the time he first met the gaang.
Besides having Appa would have given him leverage he could use to extract a pretty penny worth of favors from Aang. It seems the real problem he had was that he couldn't get Sokka to forget about warning the Earth King nor could he keep suspicions at bay. (why Jet why did you run across Katara?)

What is amusing is seeing this after the show ended and Korra, one realizes that Long Feng was closer to achieving his goals than anyone else portraying a villain on this show. Pretty good for a "lowly peasant".
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« Reply #398 on: Dec 30, 2014 08:56 pm »

This is easily one of my favorite episodes from the original series. Long Feng was a great villain and the true nature of Ba Sing Se was creepy as heck. I loved the 1984 parallels.

Anyway, I thought the Zuko and Jet fight was amazing. I wished that we got more battles like that.
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