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"I've been scared this whole time. I've never felt like this before and I don't know what to do!"
Korra confessing her fear to Tenzin.

"The Voice in the Night" is the fourth episode of Book One: Air of The Legend of Korra and the fourth of the overall series. It debuted on April 28, 2012, on Nickelodeon.


Avatar Korra is still mentally struggling after witnessing Amon demonstrate his ability to remove a person's bending. Councilman Tarrlok creates a task force to eradicate the Equalists and pressures Korra to join. After participating in a successful raid, she challenges Amon to a midnight duel.


While asleep in her bed, Korra is awakened by a strange noise. Moments later, an Equalist chi-blocker jumps through her bedroom window, quickly followed by his teammates. Despite putting up a fierce fight, Korra loses to the chi-blockers. As she collapses, Amon appears out of the shadows, threatening to remove her bending abilities. Korra, terrified of losing her powers, awakens with a scream in her bedroom on Air Temple Island, realizing it was all a nightmare.

At City Hall the next morning, Councilman Tarrlok requests permission from the United Republic Council to form an anti-Equalist task force led by him. In order to convince the other Council members, he uses Avatar Aang's defeat of Yakone as an example of the initiative that needs to be taken. Tenzin argues that such a task force would only further divide benders and nonbenders and that Tarrlok is only making this proposal in an attempt to gain more power. Tarrlok defends his idea by stating that Amon will not stop at the triads and will continue to target all benders, their friends and family included. Tarrlok vows to rid the world of Amon's threat if the council will allow him. Despite Tenzin's objections, the rest of the Council votes in favor of Tarrlok's proposal.

Scared Korra

Korra becomes fearful upon hearing Amon's message on the radio.

As Korra is practicing her airbending technique while listening to the radio, the music is interrupted by a message from Amon. He uses the formation of the task force as further evidence of oppression from benders and claims that the Equalist movement is gaining more members every day and cannot be stopped. He goes on to announce that nonbenders no longer have to live in fear and concludes that it is time for benders to experience fear. Korra stares at the radio in fear during the entire broadcast.

The next day, while crossing the boulevard after leaving the power plant to catch a trolley, Mako is hit by a young woman on a moped. Though he is initially angry, he quickly forgives her after witnessing her beauty. She introduces herself as Asami Sato and, realizing who he is, reveals that she is an avid fan of pro-bending and invites him to dinner at Kwong's Cuisine. When Mako admits that he does not have nice enough looking clothes, Asami tells him that she will handle it, and they make a date. As she drives off, a love-struck Mako watches her go.

Tarrlok visiting Air Temple Island

Tarrlok visits Tenzin's home on Air Temple Island in an attempt to recruit Korra for his task force.

That evening, Tarrlok visits Tenzin and his family during dinner on Air Temple Island; he interrupts Tenzin in the midst of a prayer, and after pointing out that airbenders never send away a hungry guest, Tenzin reluctantly lets him stay, much to Pema's irritation. Tarrlok introduces himself to Korra and flatters her before asking her to join his special task force. To his and Tenzin's surprise, she refuses. Tarrlok again tries to persuade Korra to accept his offer; however, Tenzin states that it is time for him to leave, to which he concedes.

Mako arrives at Kwong's, only to be met by a man who greets him and provides him with an upper-class outfit to wear for the dinner date, courtesy of Asami. Mako, however, refuses to remove his scarf and meets with Asami. At her prompting, he tells her of his struggles with money and how the Fire Ferrets will not be able to play in the next Pro-bending Tournament. When the waiter mentions Asami's surname, Mako realizes that she is the daughter of Hiroshi Sato, inventor of the Satomobile and the most successful industrialist in all of Republic City. Asami asks if he would like to meet her father, to which Mako enthusiastically agrees.

Hiroshi sponsoring the Fire Ferrets

Hiroshi Sato announces his decision to sponsor the Fire Ferrets for the Pro-bending Tournament.

Over the next few days, Tarrlok sends a page to deliver Korra various extravagant gifts to persuade her to join his task force, including a large gift basket and a racing-type Satomobile that Ikki and Meelo pretend to drive. Korra speaks with Bolin about his encounter with Amon and is reminded of her deep-seated fear. Tenzin also speaks to Korra, telling her that he is always there for her if she wishes to talk about her fear of the Equalists. Meanwhile, Asami Sato introduces Mako to her father. Hiroshi is sympathetic to Mako's money troubles, telling him he began as a poor shoe-shiner who received a loan from a wealthy banker, and offers to sponsor the Fire Ferrets, much to Mako's joy.

Finally, Tarrlok, seeing that his gifts are not prevailing in persuading Korra to join the task force, organizes a gala in Korra's honor at City Hall. She and Tenzin's family attend, but Tenzin is very suspicious of Tarrlok's motives. Mako, Bolin, and the Satos attend as well, and Korra becomes slightly jealous of the new recipient of Mako's attention. Mako and Bolin tell Korra that Mr. Sato is willing to sponsor the Fire Ferrets in the Pro-bending Tournament, though Korra does not seem to be ecstatic at the news. Chief Lin Beifong is also there, still in her police uniform, and revealed to have no higher opinion of Korra than at their last meeting.

Korra challenging

Korra challenges Amon to a one-on-one duel.

At the end of the gala, Tarrlok exposes Korra to a number of journalists and photographers who bombard her with questions and accusations about her refusal to join forces with Tarrlok and fight the Equalists. Unable to muster Tenzin's reasoning of trying to avoid worsening the division between benders and nonbenders in the face of the paparazzi, Korra announces that she will join Tarrlok's task force and that she was not afraid of Amon.

Later on, Tarrlok's task force invades a secret chi-blocking training facility and captures many chi-blockers-in-training and other Equalists. The raid is successful and, in front of a large group of press, Korra publicly challenges Amon to a one-on-one duel at midnight on Aang Memorial Island.

That night, Mako and Asami ride in a carriage together through the park. After she asks him why he is not wearing the new scarf she bought him, Mako explains to Asami that his scarf used to belong to his father and is the only remaining part of him Mako has. In return, Asami tells him that she lost her mother when she was very young as well.

Korra breaking down

Korra breaks down after Amon's ambush.

Tenzin attempts to persuade Korra not to go through with her rash decision, and Tarrlok claims that he also tried to talk her out of it, but she goes to meet Amon on Aang Memorial Island despite his warning. There, after Korra's anxious waiting, Amon ambushes Korra with many chi-blockers and decides not to take her bending away, explaining that doing so now would only serve to make her a martyr. Therefore, she will be the last bender to fall as part of a mysterious plan. She is subsequently struck unconscious and sees visions of an adult Sokka, Toph, Yakone, and Aang.

Tenzin arrives to see what has happened, but the young Avatar believes that he is the older Aang. Korra, terribly shaken by her frightening experience, embraces Tenzin and starts sobbing, admitting that she had never felt so terrified before, because she had never felt so helpless. Tenzin tells her that admitting her fears was the first and most difficult step in overcoming them.


Production notes[]


Main article: Transcript:The Voice in the Night
Main article: Transcript:The Voice in the Night (commentary)


Main article: Writing in the World of Avatar

Series continuity[]

  • The Fire Ferrets' financial issues are solved by Hiroshi Sato.

Character revelations[]

  • Asami Sato lost her mother when she was young.
  • Mako's scarf belonged to his father prior to his death.


  • After Korra declines Tarrlok's offer to join his task force at dinner, an overhead view of the room shows a window/panel to Tarrlok's left. When the camera views Korra and Tarrlok directly after that, the window/panel is gone.
  • When Mako puts his scarf around his neck while getting ready for his date with Asami, it is notably longer, going down to his pants. However, in the next scene, the scarf goes down to the center of his chest.
  • When Asami and Mako go on their date, in the first shot of them sitting at the table, Asami does not have a teacup. In the next shot, she does.
  • When Tenzin asks Korra to take a break from her airbending training and invites her to sit with him, Korra's armband is missing when she sits down.
  • When Meelo runs off to use the "toilet", Tenzin is missing the arrow on his left hand.
  • When Tenzin puts his arms around Korra to comfort her, his hands are noticeably apart from each other on her back. In the next frame, his hands are right next to each other.


  • The scene in which Mako is hit by Asami's moped mimics a similar event from the anime series FLCL, one of Michael Dante DiMartino and Bryan Konietzko's biggest inspirations for the original series.
  • Councilman Tarrlok references Avatar Aang's defeat of Yakone forty-two years prior to present day. This means that Republic City was, to some extent, up and running in 128 AG, a mere twenty-eight years after the end of the Hundred Year War.
  • Jinora and Ikki can be seen playing Pai Sho in the background when Korra receives her invitation to Tarrlok's party.
  • Korra challenging Amon is reminiscent of her teacher, Katara, challenging the North Pole's waterbending master, Pakku, with both Katara and Korra ending their impulsive and bold challenge with a question of their opponent's masculinity.
  • The image on the banners seen in Tarrlok's party was a piece of Korra's concept art.
  • Tenzin is shown using a traditional Air Nomad glider in this episode.
  • The title of this episode bears similarities to a song from the Metal Gear series.
  • The Voice in the Night is also the title of a book published in 1907 by William Hope Hodgson.
  • The sequence where Korra uses her firebending against the chi-blockers during their nighttime ambush on Aang Memorial Island was based on an unused concept for Avatar: The Last Airbender, where Aang would have fought Zuko in complete darkness, with the characters and their surroundings only appearing when Zuko firebent.[1]
  • When Mako gets dressed up for his date with Asami, his appearance is very similar to Roger Smith from the anime Big-O.
  • After being knocked out, Korra sees an outline of Tenzin, but believes it to be Aang. This is later contrasted in "Endgame", when she believes Aang's spirit to be Tenzin.
  • The scene transition from a still frame of Korra with Tarrlok's task force to the frame as a photo in a newspaper article was inspired by a similar sequence in the film The Hudsucker Proxy.[1]
  • This episode had the second highest number of U.S. viewers for Book One with 4.08 million viewers.[2]