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Team Beifong[1] was a trio of earthbenders comprising of Toph Beifong's hand-selected inaugural class of metalbending students.[1]


Finding a class

In 101 AG, Toph Beifong noted that her bracelet would vibrate ever so slightly when she was near people displaying high levels of emotion.

Toph found Ho Tun in a ramen shop, raving over having swallowed half a spider wasp in his soup, incidentally causing Toph's bracelet to shift slightly in response to his overemotional state. Following this, Toph encountered Penga in an Earth Kingdom marketplace, where she inadvertently moved Toph's space bracelet while having a tantrum. In Yu Dao, Toph saw The Dark One out on the streets uttering hateful remarks at the address of every passerby, causing him to shake Toph's bracelet unintentionally.

Toph considered the people who could move her bracelet as potential metalbenders, and recruited them to train in the Beifong Metalbending Academy near Yu Dao.[1]


Following a brief trip with Team Avatar, Toph returned to her academy, accompanied by Sokka, just in time to find her students about to leave. She quickly scolded them, assuming they were abandoning their training. The students defended themselves by explaining that they were leaving not by choice, but because they had been kicked out by a rival school of firebenders, Master Kunyo's Firebending Dojo. Master Kunyo had reclaimed the school in Toph's absence, stating that school had been a firebending academy prior to Toph's possession of the building, but that it had been abandoned because of the Harmony Restoration Movement. However, now that Fire Lord Zuko had withdrawn his support for the plan, Master Kunyo and his disciples were set on reclaiming the building, stating that it was rightfully theirs. Before Toph and Kunyo could commence in a battle over the school and subsequently destroy the building, Sokka intervened and proposed to let the students fight for the rights of the building, as opposed to the masters. He proposed a "match to the sit", meaning that whichever team of students got another student to sit down first won the match and the school.[1]

Team Beifong trained with the use of metal coins.

The duel was to take place three days after that first encounter. Sokka and Toph used this time to train the students, during which time Sokka dubbed them as "Team Beifong". Despite Toph and Sokka's best efforts, the students were unable to perform metalbending at all. The evening prior to the battle, Team Beifong prepared to dissemble and leave the academy when they accidentally overheard Toph conversing with Sokka. She revealed to Sokka that she had been expecting her students to be something they were not, much like her parents forced her to do the same. She decided to forfeit the right of the school the next day to the firebending academy.[1]

When Master Kunyo and his disciples returned the next day, Toph was about to sit without fighting them, but was halted at the last second by a metal coin to her behind, bent by Ho Tun. Much to her surprise, her teachings of metalbending had clicked with her students overnight. With the ability to metalbend on their side, Team Beifong decisively defended the school and won the battle against the three firebending students, allowing their sifu to maintain possession of the academy.[1] After the turmoil at Yu Dao, their display of fighting skills alongside their teacher during the battle brought many new students to the Beifong Academy, including Yu Dao's Chief of Police.[2]

After Toph left with Team Avatar in a journey to celebrate Yangchen's Festival, Team Beifong took over teaching duties at the academy. They were soon was called to use their metalbending rescue Toph and others victims of a cave-in at the Earthen Fire Refinery by helping to remove iron ore from the ground above them; in the process, they were given directions from Toph through Katara comparing the mission to exercises such as spider ants stomping beneath their feet. After completing the task, they were congratulated by Toph, but they soon watched their teacher collapse from exhaustion. With her father, Lao, they kept watch over her as she rested.

When Aang tried to destroy the refinery, the team helped Toph try and stop him despite Aang's warnings about an ancient spirit preparing to rampage against the town. When the spirit emerged, Ho Tun and Penga directed Aang and Toph's attention to it. As the Avatar struggled with Old Iron, Toph called on her students again, this time to help the former. They metalbent his iron armor away but drew his attention, though they were saved when Aang dealt a decisive blow to the vulnerable spirit.

Three months later, the members of Team Beifong marched in the parade for the new Spirits' Friendship Festival, playing various instruments as they made their way through the town.[3]

As teachers

As the school grew, Toph began to allow her first three students to teach some of the beginner classes. Ho Tun and Penga proved particularly enthusiastic to teach new students, although The Dark One often mistreated his. Toph would regularly meet Team Beifong for a weekly report and listen to their updates about the school. However, by the time Sokka and Suki visited the school, she appeared bored in their meeting, and cut off Penga before she even had a chance to speak. Before leaving, she noted that the problem was that everything was so respectable and perfect.

The students began to speculate that Toph disliked that they had learned bending in the comfort of the academy instead of from the badgermoles, like she had done. They also reflected on their personal growth since they came to the academy, and how Toph had changed them for the better. Ho Tun in particular noted that he was no longer afraid of doom, and encouraged the others to participate in an underground bending tournament in order to prove his strength.

That evening, they went to a derelict part of Yu Dao after The Dark One asked his uncle, who often bet on such tournaments, to point them in the right direction. Even though Penga and The Dark One both expressed concern about the tournament, Ho Tun wished to press on, and the others did not want to leave their friend behind. They finally came upon the abandoned warehouse where the tournaments were taking place.

As the trio got in line to register for the fights, the warehouse began to collapse when lava hit the metal support beams as a result of Sun's duel against a waterbender. Penga used her metalbending to keep the beam in place, and the team helped stop any scrap metal from falling on participants and spectators of the bending match, just as Toph showed up to help out. They also introduced themselves to Sun as teachers at the academy while Toph was trying to convince the lavabender to join the academy.[4]

Work at the South Pole

Team Beifong later headed to the Southern Water Tribe with Toph after her father Lao sent her as a representative of Earthen Fire Industries, who had partnered with Maliq and Malina to aid in the South's redevelopment in the Southern Reconstruction Project. Since the original workforce was let go due to increasing political tensions between the Northern and Southern tribes, Toph's students were brought in as replacements. Toph did not like the political rationale of having to hire her students, but acknowledged that they were forced to go along with them. The Dark One and Penga helped repair a broken forklift, while Ho Tun attempted to clear the snow away from the worksite, resulting in the snow threatening to bury them, before Toph's intervention.

After Earth King Kuei was kidnapped by Gilak's force of Southern nationalists, Team Beifong helped rescue the king at the confrontation at the Bridge of No Return. When Gilak was ready to burn the bridge's rope and kill the Earth King and Head Chieftain Hakoda, the three students made themselves known and started battling the Southern nationalists, defeating most of them. Before the students could defeat him, Gilak stormed onto the bridge and attempted to kill both Hakoda and himself. In the ensuing struggle, Gilak was killed, but Hakoda, Malina, the Earth King, and Fire Lord Zuko were saved from certain doom. Although the students were in shock, they were saved by Zuko, Aang, and Katara.[5]





  • Sokka was the one to dub the trio as "Team Beifong" during his visit to Toph's academy.
  • Toph often referred to the members collectively as "lily livers".
  • Team Beifong is the first assembly of metalbenders.


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 DiMartino, Michael Dante; Konietzko, Bryan; Yang, Gene Luen (writer), Sasaki of Gurihiru (penciling, inking), Kawano of Gurihiru (colorist), Heisler, Michael; Comicraft (letterer). The Promise Part Two (May 30, 2012), Dark Horse Comics.
  2. DiMartino, Michael Dante; Konietzko, Bryan; Yang, Gene Luen (writer), Sasaki of Gurihiru (penciling, inking), Kawano of Gurihiru (colorist), Heisler, Michael; Comicraft (letterer). The Search Part One (March 20, 2013), Dark Horse Comics.
  3. DiMartino, Michael Dante; Konietzko, Bryan; Yang, Gene Luen (writer), Sasaki of Gurihiru (penciling, inking), Kawano of Gurihiru (colorist), Heisler, Michael; Comicraft (letterer). The Rift Part Three (November 5, 2014), Dark Horse Comics.
  4. Hicks, Faith Erin (writer), Wartman, Peter (artist), Matera, Adele (colorist). Toph Beifong's Metalbending Academy (February 16, 2021), Dark Horse Comics.
  5. DiMartino, Michael Dante; Konietzko, Bryan; Yang, Gene Luen (writer), Sasaki of Gurihiru (penciling, inking), Kawano of Gurihiru (colorist), Heisler, Michael; Comicraft (letterer). North and South Part Three (April 26, 2017), Dark Horse Comics.

See also