Legend Of Korra Star Janet Varney On Whether She'd Return To The Series

the legend of Korra

For those who are just getting into Avatar: The Last Airbender after it returned to Netflix earlier this summer, you may be interested to know its acclaimed follow-up series The Legend of Korra is also on Netflix for the very first time. Having debuted on Nickelodeon in 2012 and ended as a web series in 2014, The Legend of Korra follows the next Avatar in the cycle and is a very different show from Avatar, with a much darker tone and more mature themes. (One of the first bisexual relationships in a cartoon series appeared in Korra). But it’s definitely a show that every fan of ATLA should check out if they fell in love with the world of Aang and the gang.

And with The Legend of Korra finally on Netflix, there’s no excuse to not watch it, even if you've seen it before. It definitely has both its fans and its detractors, which is the pop culture norm when franchises change things up (ahem, Star Wars). But while we already know Avatar: The Last Airbender's future includes an upcoming live-action adaptation (sans its two creators), the future of Korra is a lot more uncertain. CinemaBlend got a chance to speak to Korra’s voice actor, Janey Varney, and here’s what she had to say on her chances of voicing Korra again for TV:

That’s a conversation I would be incredibly lucky to even have at all [but] I don’t think that will happen. One of the cardinal rules of staying sane in acting and in writing, and in pretty much anything else you do in this business, is 'Don’t ever wonder if something good will happen.' It’s better to live in the moment, so when your show gets cancelled, like, that’s okay. I basked in the wonderful glory that was the time that we had together.

Janet Varney, who can currently be found starring on IFC’s Fortune Rookie, actually already did voice Korra after the series ended, but it wasn’t on TV. Much like Avatar: The Last Airbender has comic book follow-up, as does The Legend of Korra, and Varney recently joined a few other voice actors from the show to perform live readings of the first graphic novel from the "Turf Wars" arc from Dark Horse Comics. The second trilogy, subtitled Ruins of the Empire, ended its run in February, and dealt with events concerning season 4 of The Legend of Korra. So maybe, hopefully, Ms. Varney will voice Korra again if they read excerpts from that collection like they did with "Turf Wars."

But as for voicing Korra again on a TV show, Ms. Varney didn’t seem all that certain of the possibility, even though she would definitely be up for it again if the opportunity presented itself. Playing Korra is still a big part of her life after all, and she definitely feels like she connects with the character on a personal level. In her words:

I’m cool with somebody starting out really flawed and young and immature, and not sure how to handle where they are in their lives, and not sure with who to ask for help, or when to ask for help. And so I love how messy Korra’s journey was, because it really hit home for me.

How “messy” Korra’s journey was was actually one of the reasons that some fans of Avatar: The Last Airbender aren’t fans of The Legend of Korra. As I mentioned earlier, Korra’s story is very different from Aang’s. The latter starts out not wanting to be the Avatar, while Korra starts out proud to take on the role. Throughout his journey, Aang learns how to step up to his role as an Avatar, while Korra’s trajectory forces her to learn humility, as well as how to survive through the trauma and stress she faces.

But in a lot of ways, these are the very things fans of the show cherish about Korra’s adventure. One common belief that Korra fans have when comparing the show to Avatar: The Last Airbender is that Aang was a human who learned to be the Avatar, while Korra was an Avatar who learned to be human. Whether this was the ultimate intention of the show’s creators is speculative but, now that it’s on Netflix, you can finally form an opinion for yourself while waiting to hear any future news about The Legend of Korra's future.

In the end, nobody’s really sure if fans who just got into Avatar will be receptive to Korra, given the differences. (For instance, you can find both in the kids section of Netflix, but Korra is rated TV-PG while A:TLA earned a TV-7,) But we'll soon find out since it's now available to stream on Netflix. To find the streaming giant's complete schedule for the rest of 2020, head to our rundown.

Rich Knight
Content Producer

Rich is a Jersey boy, through and through. He graduated from Rutgers University (Go, R.U.!), and thinks the Garden State is the best state in the country. That said, he’ll take Chicago Deep Dish pizza over a New York slice any day of the week. Don’t hate. When he’s not watching his two kids, he’s usually working on a novel, watching vintage movies, or reading some obscure book.