- This article is about the celestial phenomenon. For other similar uses, see Sozin's Comet (disambiguation).
|"Only once every hundred years can a firebender experience this kind of power."|
|— Iroh right before the liberation of Ba Sing Se.|
Sozin's Comet, formerly known as the Great Comet, is a celestial object that passes close to the Earth every one hundred years, just skimming the surface of the upper atmosphere. When the comet is at this distance, firebenders are able to harness its energy, greatly increasing their powers; Fire Lord Ozai figuratively described it as giving firebenders "the power of a hundred suns".
Soon after Avatar Aang ran away from the Southern Air Temple and disappeared for one hundred years, the comet flew near the planet's orbit. Fire Lord Sozin took advantage of its passage to drastically enhance his firebending army's power and deliver a deadly first strike that plunged the world into the darkness of an all-out war of world conquest. This first assault resulted in the extinction of the Air Nomads, the sole exception being Avatar Aang. At the same time as his forces destroyed the Air Nomads, Sozin's military also exploited the comet to launch attacks against the Earth Kingdom and Water Tribes. The Fire Nation later renamed the comet "Sozin's Comet" in honor of the Fire Lord's great victory.
One hundred years later, Avatar Roku's spirit warned Aang of the comet's return at the end of the summer. With its passing, Fire Lord Ozai would gain the power he needed to finish the Hundred Year War once and for all. This gave Aang less than a year to master waterbending, earthbending and firebending in order to defeat the Fire Lord and end the war; because if Ozai were to succeed, not even the Avatar could restore balance to the world.
When Sozin's Comet arrived at the end of the summer as predicted, it once again increased the firebenders' power one hundredfold, giving them the power required to eradicate the remaining earthbender rebellions. Fire Lord Ozai planned to use this opportunity to personally lead a fleet of airships to burn the Earth Kingdom to the ground with his enhanced powers. Team Avatar and the Order of the White Lotus were the only ones that still stood in his way, and launched a counterattack. The Order of the White Lotus took it upon themselves to liberate Ba Sing Se from the Fire Nation's oppression, while Katara and Zuko faced Azula at the Fire Nation Capital, and Sokka, Suki, and Toph were responsible for the destruction of Ozai's airship fleet. Aang challenged the self-declared Phoenix King Ozai at Wulong Forest in an attempt to end his world conquest.
Due to the fact that all firebenders drew power from the comet, some used their enhanced skills for the benefit of others. Masters Jeong Jeong and Iroh of the Order of the White Lotus used them to liberate Ba Sing Se, while Zuko kept his sister at bay, whose increasing mental instability hindered her battle prowess, but also made her more dangerous. Finally, Aang used his combined mastery of the elements to confront the Phoenix King, whose skills matched or surpassed his own abilities. However, master benders of other elements were not completely outclassed by the firebenders' power boost, because despite their enhanced bending, Ozai and his allies were defeated by the Avatar and his supporters. In the end, Aang used energybending to strip Ozai of his firebending, rendering him powerless.
By the time Sozin's Comet left the earth's atmosphere again, the Earth Kingdom had been liberated and the Hundred Year War was finally over.
Known enhanced firebenders
Avatar: The Last Airbender
Book One: Water (水)
- 107. "Winter Solstice, Part 1: The Spirit World" (vision)
- 108. "Winter Solstice, Part 2: Avatar Roku" (vision)
Book Three: Fire (火)
- 309. "Nightmares and Daydreams" (dream)
- 319. "Sozin's Comet, Part 2: The Old Masters"
- 320. "Sozin's Comet, Part 3: Into the Inferno"
- 321. "Sozin's Comet, Part 4: Avatar Aang"
- Due to comets being comprised mostly of various frozen gases and dust, many fans wondered how it was possible for the comet to provide power to firebenders. However, in the vision that Avatar Roku's dragon, Fang, gave Aang, the comet appeared to be on fire and during the events of Sozin's Comet, it was revealed that the comet passed extremely close to the planet. When it arrived, it brushed against the upper atmosphere, and so the comet and its tail do indeed catch fire, providing a powerful heat source.
- The real-world phenomenon that best fits this description is an Earth-grazing fireball, a small space body that enters the upper atmosphere and leaves. However, as an Earth grazer passes through the atmosphere, its mass and velocity are changed, so that when it re-enters space it would be on a different orbit than before it passed and therefore cannot be periodical.
- Avatar Roku warned Aang that the power of the comet would make the Fire Lord and his forces stronger than he could even imagine, and that he should act before the comet arrived. However, even with the power of the comet, Ozai fought Aang on a mostly level footing, until Aang's reluctance to kill Ozai granted the Fire Lord a chance to seize the upper hand. However, not even enhanced firebending skills proved to be enough to give Ozai a fighting chance against Aang in a continuous Avatar State. He did, however, last far longer than anyone else who had been faced with the Avatar State before.
- Sozin lived an above average lifespan of 102 years due to the comet's power, suggesting that a firebender who has been influenced by the comet will have a longer lifespan.
- The appearance of the comet once every one hundred years is similar to the 75-76 year intervals of the appearance of Halley's Comet.
- In The Last Airbender, the significance of Sozin's Comet was changed; instead of enhancing the firebenders' power, the comet's passing would enable them to use their own chi to create fire, a feat otherwise only achievable by a true master firebender. The comet was also due to arrive in three years time, rather than at the end of summer as depicted in the show.
- The first known person to firebend during the passing of Sozin's Comet in 100 AG was the Fire Nation airship captain on the airship Sokka, Toph, and Suki commandeered.
- Due to her long lifespan, Avatar Kyoshi experienced three passings of the comet in her lifetime.