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SilverStormm

The Dragon Prince

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A place to discuss particular episodes, arcs and moments from the first season. Please remember this isn't a complete catch-all topic -- check out the forum for character topics and other places for show-related talk.

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I've already binge-watched all nine episodes of the Dragon Prince twice.  The humor reminds me a lot of Avatar, and so far, I really enjoy the main characters and extended cast.  The only thing that bothered me was the frame rate, as the show uses 2D animation imposed on top of 3D models.  Yet even that didn't bother me as much after a while.

It's too bad there aren't more episodes in the first season, as it feels as though the story has barely begun.  That said, I have these observations (put under spoiler tags, since this forum is not currently designated for spoilers):

1. The scroll King Harrow gives to Callum:

Spoiler

 

I wonder if it designates him Harrow's heir.  So much is made of Callum being the "step prince" and Ezran the bio son that it would be a shock if Harrow made Callum his direct heir.  Designating Callum Prince Regent until Ezran comes of age would not seem surprising, by comparison.  Or, maybe it has an unusual request for Callum, like he personally go and apologize to the Dragon Queen on behalf of the kingdom.  In any event, I'm guessing that Claudia finding the scroll is not a good development.


 

2. Viren's magical option for King Harrow:

Spoiler

 

People much sharper than I am are theorizing that off-screen, Viren did, in fact, use the magical snakes to suck King Harrow's soul out of his body and into his bird.  I think they're right.  Which makes me wonder how "King Harrow" appeared to Runaan when he came to kill him.  Runaan was struggling to walk when he left the king's chamber -- could the bird soul inside King Harrow's body have put up that much of a fight? 

Also, some speculated that when Viren approached King Harrow a second time with the snakes, he was going to offer to sacrifice his own life after all.  That makes a lot of sense, given Viren's speech to Claudia right beforehand, and makes Viren that much more of a complicated person.

 

3. The mirror

Spoiler

My theory is that it sucks people into some unforgiving hell dimension, where they remain until someone on the other side recites "magic" words.  Yet that sounds very pat.  Hopefully there's more to it.

4. Claudia and Soren

Spoiler

Going not only by their deep ambivalence about their mission, but also by the drawings at the end of each episode, I'm guessing they're going to flip and ultimately join the heroes' side.  Not without some struggle, and bumps along the way.  I think Claudia will be tougher to flip because she has that magical connection to her dad, and that sweet, sweet dark magic is just too difficult to resist.

Looking forward to Season Two!

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I really like the story. I really like the characters. I am intrigued by the magic system. I really want to know what happens next.

But I haaaaaaaate the animation. What is that framerate, 6 fps? What were they thinking? I know this show is drawn on computers, but plenty of computer drawn shows have very smooth animation. The Japanese have figured this out, why can’t the people making this show?

I’m on board for the next season, and to tell the truth I will probably watch all the way to the end. But if the animation continues to be this jaggedy, I’m going to be gritting my teeth sometimes.

(Apparently the animation is good enough for people who know ASL to understand Amaya, so I do give them credit for that)

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Quick impressions: I am intrigued. I want more. And this brings me to my main gripe - I feel like the story was juuuust starting to really get rolling, and it's already done. Have we heard if Netflix has renewed it for more seasons? How long will production take before we get new episodes on our screens? It's frustrating.

Also, it was impossible for me to not drawn comparisons between TDP and ATLA, and honestly, IMO, everything pales in comparison to ATLA.  Still, I love the magic system they've set up and want to learn more about it. I loved seeing the Moonshadow elves turn into invisible ninjas at the full moon. I just want more.

Right now I'm guessing that season two will focus on the Sun, and we'll meet the Sunfire elves. I'm also guessing that we'll probably see a Zuko-esque arc of redemption and eventual alliance from Soren and/or Claudia. But really, we have to wait how long for more?

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13 hours ago, Stardancer Supreme said:

No one else is watching this amazing show?  I have so many questions and want to pick it apart. Guess I'll watch it again.

I already want to watch it again (third time).  It's so easy... maybe 3-4 hours of your time.

A lot of people have discussed what happened/did not happen to King Harrow, but I'm stuck on what was in that scroll.  What's iiiiiiiin it??

Regarding the dragon egg:

Spoiler

So I'm guessing that over the seasons, the baby dragon will grow a la Daenerys's dragons in GoT, until it's massive in size. Couldn't they have found a better name than a play on Ozymandias?

And if we see Xadia in the following seasons, I wonder if we'll meet Rayla's parents...

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I also want to know the story behind Prince Callum's mother. And his father, for that matter, since practically everyone harped so much on King Harrow not being his father. Soren calling him "StepPrince" to his face has to be annoying to Callum.

Can we start topics on each episode? 

Edited by Stardancer Supreme

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Hi Everyone!

If you really want topics per episode, I don't mind to close this current topic and set those up for you (we don't keep an all-episode topic open in small forums when we have episode-specific topics, because it tends to split the conversation); however, it might be better if we make this a season-long thread for first season, and do a new thread for each new season. Episode topics are usually maintained only by a sufficient amount of conversation for each episode; we need more conversation for each episode than we currently have in this all-episode topic. Otherwise the episode topics would eventually get rolled up into one catch-all thread again.

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11 hours ago, garnetarden said:

Hi Everyone!

If you really want topics per episode, I don't mind to close this current topic and set those up for you (we don't keep an all-episode topic open in small forums when we have episode-specific topics, because it tends to split the conversation); however, it might be better if we make this a season-long thread for first season, and do a new thread for each new season. Episode topics are usually maintained only by a sufficient amount of conversation for each episode; we need more conversation for each episode than we currently have in this all-episode topic. Otherwise the episode topics would eventually get rolled up into one catch-all thread again.

A season-long thread sounds good to me.

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16 hours ago, garnetarden said:

Is the current subtitle — “Avatar meets LOTR meets Game of Thrones?” — fine for Season 1, or do you want to suggest something different?

That was more to describe the show as a whole.  I feel as though that label should be kept somewhere, but not sure where.  The Season 1 title could be different if you would prefer.  Or maybe: "So far... Avatar meets LOTR meets Game of Thrones"?

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I just finished binging the first season, and what a delight it was! I can't wait for the second book.

They did a nice job of zagging where I expected them to zig, and the characters are much more complex than I expected.

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Great news! That was a much quicker turnaround than I expected, it's nice to not have to wait a year or more in between seasons.

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18 hours ago, Maelstrom said:

Great news! That was a much quicker turnaround than I expected, it's nice to not have to wait a year or more in between seasons.

They have some reviews out, though I would steer clear of the one from Polygon, as it contains a major spoiler.  I like this one from Hypable.

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Bingewatch for the Win.

Non-spoiler-ly thoughts; You can definitely see the improvement in the animation. Experimentation is all well and good, but not every experiment is a winner and I'm glad they're willing to course correct when its clearly not working.

The story was excellent and remained pretty character focused. Everyone's decisions made sense for where they were at and while it answered a number of questions from season one, I think it left us with just as many new ones going into season three.

Now onto the spoiler-y bits;

Spoiler

I shouldn't be surprised given the title of the season (since a large chunk of last season was Rayla's growth and it was Moon), but Callum's efforts to try and find his own magic definitely felt like the core of this season.

Act One took place at the Moon Shrine as he learned about the origins of primal magic, being told humans can't work primal magic and then being offered and rejecting the easy alternative of dark magic.

Act Two was his time of learning; learning about himself, the mistakes of his step-father, but also how the blind ship captain was able to feel the wind and how he might become connected to it.

Act Three saw his desire to protect Rayla make the easy path feel like the only path and his step down that path and then rejection of it left him in an internal struggle with himself that was ultimately resolved with appearances by his step-father and then finally his mother after which he woke up able to break all the rules of magic by finding the sky arcanum inside himself and becoming the first human (that we know of) to ever use primal magic.

His mother specifically being the one to appear doesn't feel accidental at all, since one of those new questions we're left with is "Who was Callum and Ezran's mother... because as also becomes plain throughout the season and particularly in the finale where Ezran is able to talk to Ozymandius via some type of psychic link over a great distance, neither boy is quite inside the rules of normal magic for the setting.

Between that and the Elf in the mirror who could use magic of every arcanum (and I'm pretty sure he's going to end up the actual Big Bad of the series) I'm left with the sense that Dark Magic might be the biggest lie of them all; that humans ARE capable of primal magic, but were sold a bill of goods on a quicker and easier path (probably by the Big Bad and that's why he was actually locked away in a mirror) and that Callum and Ezran are somehow more connected to the true primal path humans were supposed to have.

So, when does season three drop? I'm absolutely ready.

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I got up up early before I had anything to do just to powerbinge this morning.. And i am not upset.. It was great... The brothers both grew a lot.. Claudia is still an intriguing Grey character as is her dad Veren though looks like he's a much darker shade.. Like charcoal... The bond between Ez and Zym at the end was unexpected... Callum and the primal not so much... Aunt amaya vs the fire elf lady was a nice two round fight I assume there will be more... I was glad to see some of the other kingdoms.. I imagine that the young queen will feature more as she and Ez bookended in a few scenes in one episode... Rayla kinda had a backseat this season.. But she had a huge arch in series 1... I have a feeling avvaros will be wanting to get at Zym and Ez before this series is done and those 2 plus Callum will have to lead the charge against.... I'm so excited already for series 3

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Some additional spoiler-y thoughts now that I’ve slept on it;

Spoiler

It was quite retroactively character defining when the letter flashbacks revealed that Callum was trying to use the same words to Ez to tell him about his father that the King used to tell him of what happened to his mother.

Maybe it’s just me, and a lot of probably just comes down to Ez’s age, but I almost see more of the King in Callum than Ez at this point.

It also took me a bit, but I finally realized that Avvaros was also the narrator of the intro to season one and that can’t be a coincidence.

The cycle of violence now makes a lot more sense... Veren encourages a mission to go kill the fire titan, which in turn leads to the death of the queen by Thunder and eventually to the king agreeing to go kill Thunder which then leads to the Moonshadow elves coming to kill the king.

I also think they’ve already given an answer of sorts to the key cube. If each face lights up when near a particular primal source, clearly opening it is going to take magic from all six primal sources. The only question is whether that’s going to be Callum learning to use all six sources or bringing together people/things with all six sources.

My hunch is it’s going to be Callum because there’d be little point to him regaining Sky magic when Zym the storm dragon is part of the group and because someone has to be the counterpoint to Avvaros; who also clearly can wield multiple primal sources.

It also puts him as a strong counterpoint to dark magic in general and I am wondering whether Veren’s clearly degenerate state is going to shock Claudia off the dark path while she’s still only sporting a cool white lock of hair. I definitely think her re-encountering Callum who’s become a Mage without dark magic is going to shock her.

I almost think Zym is going to have to NOT go back to his mother. Callum is becoming a bridge of sorts between humans and the primal magic of Zadia so it stands to reason that Zym needs more exposure to the better parts of humans so that some type of balance can be reached.

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[Due to a random glitch, my original post from yesterday was eaten, so here it is again.]

I agree with Chris24601 that the animation in this season looked much better, though I’m one of those people who think it wasn’t that bad in season one.  Maybe a little clunky the first few episodes, but then it smoothed out.

I also agree that
 

Spoiler

Aaravos is meant to be the Big Bad.  He is probably the one who taught the first human one thousand years ago how to do primal magic.  Humans could probably always do real magic, but it was more difficult for them, so they were led to believe they couldn’t do it at all, until Aaravos convinced them that dark magic was The Only Way.

Oh, and I knew from the moment he spoke that Aaravos was the one who narrated the prologue to the first episode.  He has a mighty sexy voice. 

Some other thoughts:

1.  I liked Soren a lot less this season than last season, until the last couple of episodes.  Given his task, he seemed rather too nonchalant, especially after the reluctance he showed initially.

2.  Was that symbol in the dream sequence the same one that Aaravos wove into Viren’s cloth?  And did anyone else think that when Callum saw the person in the hood, initially it looked like Aaravos?

3.  Was disappointed by the scroll.  The words were lovely, but last season, the scroll was set up to have a big revelation.  I thought it was going to make Callum Prince Regent.

4.  So Viren is the reason Callum and Ezran have no mother.  Great.

5.  Speaking of, the story behind Claudia and Soren having no mother was interesting.  She’s not dead; she just couldn’t deal with Viren’s intensity any longer.

6.  Ezran turning back a few hours from the border was strange.  He couldn’t have helped deliver Zym and then gone home?  

7.  Yay for Pip (King Harrow?) escaping the cage during Viren’s freakout sequence!  Now he’ll probably fly and meet Ezran before the latter reaches the castle.

8.  Really glad the rest of the series won’t be Callum’s struggle over using dark magic.  In fact, there was far less angst than I thought.  Callum never seemed to like dark magic and was sick after the one time he used it.

9.  When Rayla was trying to wake up Callum from his dream, did it sound like she was about to say “I love you”?  Are we supposed to be getting any romantic vibes from them?  I get just a brother-sister vibe.

Oh, and I loved Claudia’s reaction to seeing little Zym.  I feel you, Claudia.

Edited by Brn2bwild
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I binge-watched season one only a couple of weeks and was spared the agony of waiting so long for season two, he! Now I'll join the waiting club for season three LOL!

Non spoilery observation: Why is there no Azymondias doll available??? Seriously, I'd buy that in a heartbeat but all I can find is Bait. What's wrong with Netflix's marketing department???

As for the rest:

Spoiler

I was a bit surprised that Callum's bio father is obviously not some mysterious guy but was a well-known figure. That's at least what I gathered from King Harrow's letter. I wonder if his bio Dad is responsible for Callum's link to magic, or if it's really something that all humans have inherited but forgot about (or were made to forget about). Or is his mother responsible since both her kids show some supernatrual abilities?

Not as impressed by King Harrow as I probably should be. That was a nice speech he gave to his wife but once reality hit his ruling style was a bit short-sighted. Giving half your food resources to your starving neighbors is a noble thing - less noble is doing so when it means that your own subjects will starve instead. Stuff like that normally ends with a royal head on the chopping block. Sure he got killed (??? ) indirectly for this decision but nobody except Viren challenged the wisdom of his policy in the first place.

But I really loved how the show made a point of how history can be twisted and turned and how often humans end up being its prisoners (and I say that as a historian). That was brilliant - especially the juxtaposition of Harrow's warning with Viren's attempt to manipulate Queen Aanya.

Yeah Viren, I'm sure the guy whose name turns into ink blotches in all the reference books once you want to research him has your best interests at heart. (I can't help wondering why there are entries for him in the first place - but the effect was cool.)

As others have pointed out the writing for Soren was lacking in nuance. We should have seen more glimpses of his inner conflict during the season - especially as it could have helped in explaining some of his rash actions.

I was excited to see the return of human Rayla - too bad Callum was such a spoilsport!

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Seeing young King Harrow and Viren really brings to mind the saying about “the road to Hell is paved with good intentions” and how it all started to go wrong.

Spoiler

Prodded by what seems to be a bit of a guilty conscience for his privilege of being born a prince, he offers up what really isn’t his to give away (the food stores of his people) and puts them in peril.

Then instead of owning up to his inability to cash the checks his mouth was writing, he buys into the plan to use dark magic to have his cake/honor and eat it too/not have his own people starve. It saves the many, but kills his wife (who didn’t agree with the plan in the first place).

One can’t help but see the roots of Harrow’s souring on Viren and dark magic, his wife gave her life so Viren could live to perform the ritual, but from the opening narration, the opportunity for revenge on the creature which killed his wife seems to have overrode that because Thunder was killed with dark magic - which incites the Moonshadow assassins to kill Harrow and Ezran.

I also wonder if Viren giving Claudia the primal stone wasn’t a bit about keeping her from getting as corrupted by dark magic as he had become because she’d be able to cast at least some of her magic using the primal stone instead. He is very much the hero of his own story so everything he’s done has been what he feels is the right thing at the time.

What’s fascinating to ponder is how Viren will react to seeing Callum able to work real primal magic. Viren has virtually hollowed himself out using dark magic because he’s always believed its the only path to solve man’s problems. But here’s this kid who can do what no human mage has ever done, connect with one of the primal sources and work magic without that price (though it can be argued the price was actually the time spent looking inwards to find his connection to the sky and accepting the limitations that the power he can channel is limited by the relative strength of the source... i.e. stronger in a storm, weaker in calm air).

This goes double if, as I suspect, Callum is going to go on and forge a connection to ALL the primal sources.

That moment; when Viren (or more likely the less far gone Claudia) realizes everything he thought he knew about magic was a lie; is so potentially powerful that I’m almost certain there’s nothing actually special about Callum’s parentage.

Instead I suspect that Callum is able to connect with the primal sources because of his upbringing; his seeking a connection he didn’t quite feel due to the loss of his parents and his step-father’s mistaken belief that he shouldn’t try to replace Callum’s birth father let him find a connection with the primal.

Which echoes with our blind ship captain. He may not invoke draconic runes to cast wind and lightning spells, but there’s no doubt he’s got a connection to the sky arcanum that grew with the loss of his sight.

My hunch is that’s the message behind the magic; what makes it a metaphor rather than just cool powers. Humans can only forge a bond with the primal through a sacrifice of the self (the captain lost his vision, Callum lost his parents and, sacrifices the primal stone for the greater good, then by reading Harrow’s letter surrenders the last new words from his second father he’d ever have. Finally he had to sacrifice the easy path to power... the core tenant of dark magic is that you can have power without having to sacrifice yourself even as it hollows you out.

Only then, once he’d surrendered himself to it and just breathed (taking the sky into yourself and releasing it) was he able to connect to the Sky.

And that’s why primal magic has seemed so impossible for humans; because it demands personal loss to achieve; a loss that few are ever willing to pay when there’s a seemingly easier way in dark magic.

All of that would be undercut if it was revealed that Callum had some distant sky-connected ancestor which makes him special by blood instead of special by his actions.

I think my interpretation though is reinforced though by Ezran’s ability to talk to animals. The official website links connecting with animals as an aspect of the Earth arcanum. So either Ezran’s mom is somehow connected to both the Earth AND Sky arcanum and passed one each off to her sons... or more likely, Ezran’s loss of his mother and inability to connect with kids his own age led to his unconsciously forging a connection to the Earth arcanum.

This also suggests an alternative endgame to Callum learning all six arcanum himself. Rayla is already connected to the Moon, Ezran to Earth and Bait to the Sun. That leaves just a connection to the stars and the sea for the heroes to have access to all six primal sources needed to use the key of Aavaros (though it’s equally likely that, just as Zym kinda doesn’t count as sky for this that they might need a more sapient wielder of the Sun arcanum).

If that is the path they’re taking (where each human only connects to one source) and presuming Claudia and/or Soren are on a redemption track and Claudia’s quite glaring story of loss related to her mother, my hunch is that at some point Claudia will sacrifice her dark magic and the easy path and end up connecting to one of the primal sources herself as part of that redemption arc. If this is where they’re going I actually think she’d probably end up connecting to the Sun with it link to both healing (a purified version of what she did for Soren) and destruction; it’s opposite number to the Moon/Rayla with both connected to the Sky/Callum; and because it would allow for a major costume change from black with gold accents to white with gold accents to really punch the transformative power of redemption up in a visual medium.

At this point its mostly speculation... whether Callum picks up another arcanum in season three or not will reveal the actual ending path. Personally, I kinda like the theme of the younger characters who’ve all lost something coming together and ending the war by embodying the six primal sources better than a singular “chosen one” that Callum mastering all six arcanum himself would present, but that’s just me.

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Interesting thoughts about Claudia.  Putting my other thoughts under spoiler tag, though I'm wondering how much longer that's necessary.

Spoiler

I wonder if she'll have a protracted struggle with giving up dark magic, much like a drug abuser getting clean.  Maybe her mother will unexpectedly be a source of helping her to rediscover herself.  The place where her mother went to was so specific, Del Bar, that I can't help but think that we're meant to see her at some point.  I could see Claudia having some limited ability to perform primal magic, and learning to be content with that over being all-powerful with dark magic.

Oh, and on another note, regarding the potential Callum/Rayla ship: though some have noticed subtle interest from Rayla, I wondered if Callum drawing Rayla in his book wasn't a sign of his attraction.  He's only previously drawn people he's really cared about and/or had a crush on.

Also, I want to make a prediction: next season, Rayla and Callum will return Zym to his mother... and all problems will not be magically solved.  With Rayla's concern about the sun dragon, I wonder if the other dragons will be willing to accept a baby as their new king.

Edited by Brn2bwild
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Though the official policy is 'once its out it doesn't need spoilers', because this is show is a single thread I'm going to give it til the end of the week for politeness sake. With a total run time of just over three and a half hours I figure its comparable to a long movie and I typically wait about a week on movie spoilers because weekends are sometimes too busy to actually get around to seeing them.

If someone decides to drop spoilers before then I'll do the same for those items though since it'd be silly to keep it up once the cat is out of the bag.

To the topic at hand;

Spoiler

I agree that Claudia's mother will come back into the picture at some point. Their plan to give up the chase and return home with just the dragon horn is bound to go pear-shaped with Viren having been captured after murdering several guards (the first ones hit by fire are questionable but the ones turned to ice and to stone then shattered are absolutely dead and I'm kinda shocked they managed to keep the Y7 rating with that in there) and Gren being found (in the closing credits) which will no doubt put Claudia and Soren under suspicion.

Throw in the "Scared Straight" - "This is your future on dark magic" that Viren is in without his magic butterfly draining and, yeah, I could definitely see Claudia and Soren having to leave in a hurry and "Mom" is probably the only safe bet unless Ezran makes it back first and isn't overruled by the council on showing the two mercy (Ezran's heart is so big I can't see him NOT wanting to forgive them... heck, he already did with Claudia in "Breathe"... but he's ten and the council may decide to overrule him).

Another part of my thinking on Claudia eventually learning primal magic (and the sun specifically) and basically going "Claudia the White" is because it would also be a way to play with removing her dark magic skunk stripe... by having her hair go entirely white (maybe with gold instead of purple tips) instead of going back to all black.

Finally, while I have no objection to a Callum/Rayla ship, I don't know that we've had any confirmation about the potential biology of a human/elf pairing. Horns and a different number of digits suggests more than just cosmetic differences on that score. We also don't know the degree to which magic is involved and whether or not they even have a common ancestor (maybe elves are descended from humans who internalized a primal source... maybe humans are the descendants of elves who lost their connection to the primal sources somehow... maybe only the elves or humans are natives and the others arrived in a space ship... the point is we don't even know what we don't know about human/elf relations at this point).

While bio-kids doesn't have to be a thing for a couple to be happy, given that Callum's basically been orphaned twice over (first his dad, then his mom, then his step-dad) I think a family of his own would probably be something he'd want down the line so I'd lean towards any reveal that elves and humans aren't compatible also being a sign that romantic Callum/Rayla isn't intended to be a thing.

And that could be why they've kept Claudia quite sympathetic and shown her to be Callum's first crush before he ever encountered Rayla.

Frankly, as long as they don't turn it into a big love triangle I'm fine with it either way.

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This season was much better than the first. The animation actually looks really good now! And I think the writing also got a lot better and added nuance to the characters. Also, I felt that Season One was missing the quirky side characters that added just a little extra texture to Avatar. We got one in this season, and he was a lot of fun!

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Season 3 could premier as early as mid-July 2019.

Though based on the references to the long hours they had to work to get Season 2 out, I'd be happy to wait another few months just so they avoid burnout.  As long as we don't have to wait a year between episodes...

Otherwise, thinking about Season 2, one thing doesn't make sense:

Spoiler

if Harrow killing Thunder was supposed to be vengeance for Thunder killing his wife, why did he wait nine years to do so?  How long were Harrow and Sarai married, do you think? 

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Its been almost a week and the admins position is basically "if its available it counts as having aired" so I'm dropping the spoiler tags at this point.

My guess is that it took almost nine years to kill Thunder because Thunder was basically a physical god and nothing short of dark magic was going to be able to destroy him. We already saw what a comparably minor dragon did with one swat to Soren, the Queens were taken out together with a single tail swipe and Sorai got killed by a near miss from Thunder's breath.

Viren is a villain, but his threat assessment of what the Dragon Prince could do if fully grown (and what the forces of Xadia could do if provoked) is right on target.

That's why the mission to return the Dragon Prince is actually so important; the way the two sides are pushing at each other and escalating it's only going to be a matter of time before we're looking at genocide against one side or the other (one could argue the 'drive all peoples of an ethnic group out of their lands' version has already been committed by the elves/dragons against the humans with the 'sins' of a comparative few humans as the justification for why it was right to take away the lands of all of them).

So my guess is that it took nine years for Viren to come up with a means of actually killing Thunder and took it to King Harrow who took it because he was still nursing the loss of his wife. If he wasn't one would have expected the king to remarry at some point in those nine years, if only for the stability of the line of succession (Heir and a Spare; despite being called "Prince" Callum wouldn't be in the line of succession for any real world monarchy... he's the son of the queen consort by a previous marriage and was not adopted because Harrow didn't want to impose on Callum's love for his biological father) and to provide Ezran and Callum with the stability of some type of mother figure. Basically, if not for Rayla's soft heart Kotolis would have lost both the King and his only actual heir by the end of the third episode. You don't put the kingdom in jeopardy that way unless your judgment is compromised by something like still grieving over the loss of your first wife.

My suspicion is that Harrow rather blamed himself for Sarai's death... she disagreed with the course of action, but went along anyway and ended up dying to keep the mission from being in vain. In a sense, I almost think he had a death wish and, if not for the threat to Ezran and Callum, was probably more than willing to go down swinging and join his beloved wife in death as his penance for having got her killed in the first place.

* * * * *

Based on Ezran's age at the time of her death, I can't image Harrow and Sarai were married more than a few years, but we have no idea how long their courtship was or how long they might have known each other before that courtship began. For all we know, Harrow may have been close friends with Callum's biological father before he died and perhaps grew up in both his and Sarai's company in much the way that Callum and Ezran grew up in proximity to Soren and Claudia.

* * * * *

Finally, anyone else wanna take a stab at the title for book three? My guesses are either Sun (based on where Callum and Rayla left off and the Sunfire Elves on the border... perhaps with a focus on its dual aspects as both healer and destroyer) or Earth (based on it being Ezran's turn for a season more focused on him and his animal speech being a thing connected to the Earth primal source).

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Sun seems more likely.. Especially if what was posited about Claudia being connected to the sun arcanum and having a redemptive Arctic are true... As rayla and callum are right there with the dragon.. And amaya and her knights dealing with the sunstone elves.. It tracks.. Personally I just want more ezran so I'm rooting for earth 

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I binge watched Season 2 and was shocked at where it ended. I want more!

As slimy as Viren is, I want to believe he was the one who took out Queen Sarai for going against his plans. How convenient that he was present to witness her last breath...

I wanted Soren to stay paralyzed. Mainly for provoking the red dragon to attack the town, and for being stupid in general. 

Good for Callum for finding the natural aptitude for primal magic.  I knew he wouldn't take the dark magic carrot because it seems cheap to him. I don't know why he is so hot for Claudia; the fact that she uses dark magic freely should be enough to taint her in his eyes. 

Aaravos is hot. Heh.

Gren was far too cheerful for someone shackled up in a dungeon. Did Viren remember to feed him? 

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Re Sarai, I feel as though the show should have had her and the other Queens die more recently.  As pained as King Harrow was by her death, 9 years is a long time.  Moreover, Aanya was just a baby when her mothers died; someone would have had to be regent during her first years of life.  If the Queens had died more recently, it's more believable that Aanya would take the throne and refuse to have a regent.  

Otherwise, does anyone else think that Soren isn't going to be cured, even after Claudia's sacrifice/spell?  I could see him needing more and more dark magic just to keep going, and feeling unlike himself all the while.

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I lean towards Viren telling the truth about Sarai’s death because it tracks with the man who actually went to Harrow just before the Moonshadow elf attack willing to take Harrow’s place (at least right up til Harrow threw all of it back in his face). He was using the primal stone for spells when he could back them and essentially didn’t seem as corrupt, but rather as the guy trying to solve the problem his friend had created with his big heart and misplaced guilt for having been born a prince.

Yeah, Viren is a villain, but he’s (ironically) not a cartoon villain. He’s the perfect example of the road to Hell being paved with good intentions. Everything he’s doing is what he thinks is right and he thinks he’s the hero of the story (the story where he and his mastery of dark magic saves humanity). His fatal flaw os that keeps trying to solve his problems with the same thing that’s caused all the problems in the first place because he thinks he’s being pragmatic to take the easy path when it’s clear that magic in this story follows Murphy’s Laws of Combat (“the important things are always simple, the simple things are always hard and the easy way is always mined.”).

It’s like taking out loans to buy lottery tickets on the grounds that if you can just hit that jackpot you’ll be able to pay it all back and come out ahead overall even as you’re digging yourself deeper in debt with every attempt.

So no, he may want the princes dead, but he’s basing that decision on the dangers of a peace-loving young king going into what he sees as an inevitable war. I took him at his word when he said he’d be equally fine with Amaya on the throne instead of him because he sees an adult who can make the hard choices he’s willing to make (Amaya was willing to be left behind to speed the return of the party who captured the Titan’s Heart back before Thunder returned... it was Harrow who overruled her). Only when she refused to take the throne and insisted that Ezran become king did Viren plot to kill the princes.

* * * *

As to Aanya, she did have a regent. Viren was expecting her regent to show up to the meeting and got derailed because Aanya decided she was old enough to rule in her own right without the regent.

* * * * *

Also, yes, I could see Soren’s recovery being temporary and require recurring sacrifices to maintain. It would definitely add weight to Claudia choosing to give up dark magic herself down the line if one of the prices would be Soren becoming a quadriplegic again (at the same time, if they go the one arcanum per character approach, I could see Soren finding a connection with the Stars (source of prophecy) as a tradeoff for returning to his crippled state.

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So, apparently some people have actually gone and done the work of translating the texts Viren tried to look at about Aaravos and, in a case of genuine Easter Eggs, were actually real stories/poems about Aaravos in other languages.

The first was in Danish and translates to...

"Aaravos - Finally he told me his name. I had never heard a name like his, but I also had never imagined an elf like him. He is stronger, older and wiser than any other magical being in Xadia. Nonetheless he is a friend for all humans. Where others look down on us, calls us inferior, he sees great potential in us. When we accept the gifts Aaravos has promised us, they will pay for their condescension, they will be forced to see us as equals. When we are equals, we will take our fate in our own hands and build our future. I see it before me in my dreams."

The “gifts” of Aaravos to make men equal to the elves strongly suggests he is the one who created Dark Magic and gave it to men.

He apparently claims to want to elevate the humans, but Dark Magic is predicated on killing others magical beings so it’s kinda hard to take him at his word there. It feels a lot more like he wanted a war between Men and Elves or to use the potential of Men to make them his army against the rest of Xadia.

If so, he’s almost certainly the Big Bad.

The interesting thing to me is that because he’s the master of all six primal sources + dark magic, Aaravos almost feels like an evil Avatar.

The reason I find that interesting is because it helps better define the likely ending. With an extremely powerful and sigular master-of-all as a villain who started the war and the intitial setup being young people from opposing sides putting aside their differences to end the war I don’t think “Callum masters all schools of magic” is as likely as “Callum, Ezran and Rayla unite humans and elves embodying each of the primal sources who are together more than the sum of their parts.”

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So, I have a new theory I thought I’d float.

I think Callum is going to prove more adept with Sky than even the sky elves.

My point of reference on this theory are a combination of Rayla’s initial description of how primal magic works without a primal stone, how we saw Aaravos working magic from all the Sources, and Callum’s description of how he understands the Sky arcanum.

First is Rayla’s statement, which I take to be the elves’ default understanding of primal magic. She stated that, without a primal stone, you need to have the element around to actually work primal magic and how much you can work is in proportion to how much it’s around. She references that to do Sky magic you’d need an actual storm or at least strong winds to do anything.

Second is Aaravos using primal magic through Viran, which reflects the understanding of perhaps the most powerful mage in history. While no explanation is given by him for how he can do it, Aaravos summons up magic from the Sun (fire), Sky (freezing someone solid, lightning) and Earth (turning someone to stone and shattering them)... in a dark enclosed room.

How could Aaravos do this? By the basic understanding of primal magic, Aaravos would have needed both sunlight/a large fire and a thunderstorm (in addition to Earth) to pull off those effects.

The answer I think comes in Callum’s connection to the Sky Arcanum. While most elves only think of their connection in terms of their own inner spark (thus localizating their connection to the Arcanum), Callum was forced to think bigger. He came to understand that the whole world is a great primal stone and he and everyone lives inside it.

That’s why Callum didn’t actually need a stiff breeze either time he used “Aspiro”; because he’s connected to a primal stone that has every bit of weather in the entire world inside it.

That’s why Aaravos didn’t need sun or storm in his actual location either... because the whole world is his primal stone.

That’s why Callum will prove to be stronger with Sky than even most sky elves... he’s muddled his way through to a piece of understanding that is really only the province of archmages like Aaravos.

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I am not sure if Callum will be more powerful than the sky elves, but I can see him acquiring more elements to control. If he can understand one of them, he should have the ability to understand all of them with time.

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