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Michael Dante DiMartino Hello everybody! Welcome to the commentary for uh, the second episode of Legend of Korra. I'm Mike DiMartino, uh, co-creator and executive producer.
Bryan Konietzko And I'm Bryan Konietzko, the other co-creator and executive producer.
David Faustino Yay.
Janet Varney Hey, I'm Janet Varney. I play Korra!
David I am David Faustino, I play Mako. [Chuckles.]
Bryan Thanks for comin', guys, and doin' this commentary with us. It's always fun to get the, the actors in here.
Mike Yeah, good to be here.
David It-it's a gorgeous studio, by the way.
Janet I'm excited-oh yeah! [Mike chuckles.]
Bryan Yeah, this is where we mix, uh, all the episodes for Korra, it's an awesome studio, levels.
David We got foley behind us. [Bryan affirms.]
Mike Yeah, we're gonna do some footsteps later. I...
Bryan [Interjects.] I, uh, we walked into this-this particular recording booth, [Janet laughs.] and I was like, "whoa, a zen garden!". [Mike chuckles.] I thought it was, like, a rock garden. [David laughs.] Uh, shows you how much I know about...
David [Interjects.] I thought that was a joke. [Mike chuckles.]
Bryan I'm gonna have to tell Aran Tanchum, our foley artist, that one.
Mike Yeah.
Bryan He'll get a kick outta that. [Brief pause.] But they were not-the rocks were for sounds.
Janet Yeah, guys, so, basically, it's just, like, a thing on the ground that has, like, "oh, you could step on wood! Oh, you could step on rocks! Gravel! Eight different kinds of gravel."
Bryan Yeah, [Mike chuckles; David affirms.] 'cause in animation, uh, I always say, "there's no momentum."
Mike Yeah.
Bryan [Laughing.] It's not like live action where, "hey, let's get a bunch of people together, turn on the cameras, and... things'll roll and happen. It's like...
David [Interjects.] Has this foley-I'm sorry, I was just wondering, has this foley been used for...
Bryan [Interjects.] Yeah, I think Aran did use this studio I think once for Korra.
David Wow. That's cool.
Janet Ooo!
Bryan Um, he-he works at different foley stud-studios around town. Uh, but uh...
Janet I'm gonna grab a handful of those rocks and sell them on eBay. [Bryan laughs.]
Mike [Laughs.] "Korra walked on this."
Bryan But, yeah, anyways, in animation, there's no momentum!. Everything has to be done, like these footsteps right here. [The scene is that of Tenzin and Korra walking in an enclosed stone-tiled walkway on Air Temple Island.] You have to make sounds, there's nothing that just comes along with the animation. It's all, you know...
David [In the background; groaning.] Ugh, why?
Bryan ... that-that might seem obvious to some people, but some people probably never think of it.
Janet I didn't think about that [David gives an affirming murmur.] until just now.
Bryan Every background needs to be drawn, painted... you know, designed, all that stuff; nothing just happens. [Laughs.]
Mike [Laughs.] Nope.
Bryan You know, it's like... [A short pause ensues; refers to Tenzin pulling down the sleeves on Korra's Air Nomad robes.] it's like, this was, I think, the only time we see Korra in her little airbending unif-
Janet [Interjects.] I know, it's so odd to see.
Bryan Yeah.
David [As Tenzin walks offscreen, telling Korra it's time for her first lesson.] J. K. Simmons.
Bryan It's kinda fun-yes, J. K. Simmons. Incredibly, intimidatingly talented actor.
David I love-yes. [Refers to Tenzin and Korra approaching the teaching instrument made of wooden slats, where Tenzin's children, Jinora, Ikki, and Meelo, are waiting.] I love the-I love these kids.
Mike Yeah, the kids are great.
Janet Mm-hmm.
Mike And we always like to cast real kids for the real kid parts, so uh, especially, like, Meelo, uh, this kid named Logan [Logan Wells.] ...
David [In the background.] Meelo is genius. [Janet chuckles.]
Mike ... who is so funny and so cute and... usually we find out...
David [In the background.] Ro-
Mike ... come to find out, not just with, with the little kids, but sometimes with the adults too, not always, but that like usually the personality of the person is, [Laughs.] has something to do with the character.
David Of course.
Mike Like, that's why they're good at that character.
David Sadly, but funny. [The entire group bursts into laughter.] Like...
Janet [Interjects.] Now, who's that? Who's that?
David I don't know.
Bryan So, we, um, at the-we had a really fun, uh, premiere party, and-and you guys were there, which was great, and uh, earlier this year, and Logan, who plays Meelo, came up, and uh, he goes, "everybody online said that I'm their favorite!" [Another round of laughter.]
Mike Yeah, I think he thinks he's the star of the show. [Janet laughs.]
David Yeah, yeah, that's true.
Bryan Yeah, maybe he's right! [Mike laughs.]
David Problem is they grow up.
Bryan Yeah, Meelo is big...
Mike [Interjects.] Although, he hasn't, I don't know. [Bryan affirms.] His voice still somehow-
David Good.
Mike It's been a couple years, and his voice still...
Bryan [Interjects.] But we-we're okay with that. I mean...
Mike Yeah.
Bryan ... it's a continuous storyline, and-and uh, that happened with-with [Zach Tyler Eisen.] Zach, who played, uh, Aang. You know, we recorded over several years, and we were-we wanted his voice to change, 'cause the-it is about this character coming of age. It...
David [Interjects; refers to Korra getting pummeled by the teaching tool while Meelo advises her to "be the leaf".] I love that, be the leaf. [Mike chuckles.] It's-love that.
Bryan Oh man, that one took off.
Janet Speaking of in your ca-yeah...
David [Interjects.] Is-is he, will you, [To Janet.] I'm sorry...
Janet Oh, no.
David ... will you grow, will-will-then, when these characters, when these kids grow up, will you then draw them a little bit older?
Bryan Yeah. Yeah, in Book Two, we, uh, changed all their designs. It's subtle, but, like...
David Got it.
Bryan ... it's a few months later, so we made them all taller and...
Janet Age spots.
Bryan Yeah. [Mike chuckles.]
Janet Forehead wrinkles.
Onscreen, Korra gives up on trying to make the newspaper article on Lin Beifong hanging from the clothesline move with airbending, simply incinerating it and the clothesline instead.
Bryan So, man, that newspaper design took me... a long time to do, [David laughs.] and then you see it for, like...
Mike [In the background.] All this work, it's burned up.
Bryan ... a second, and then she burns it up.
David [Refers to the shot of Korra turning her attention toward the noise from a radio broadcast.] Hello, Korra. [Mike chuckles.]
A brief break as Korra and the White Lotus sentries listen to the pro-bending announcer giving the Fire Ferrets' match a play-by-play on the radio.
Bryan Yeah, so this is our uh, little fun introduction to pro-bending, which was this idea Mike and I came up with before we even had the idea for Korra, the series, or the character. Um, we just had this idea that, "oh, maybe back, you know, way before the Fire Nation waged war, there was like a period that, of kinda relative harmony and peace between the nations," and, you know, with that kind of a, like a scenario, we figured people would, like-they're not fighting each other in like a war sense, but they would wanna test out their kung fu. And so, we had this idea of an arena where it was just one-on-one, like, with-kinda like a video game, you know, is like, oh, an-an airbender would fight a waterbender, in a sporting match, you know, not to-not to the death or anything. It was just like to see who had the best bending, or-or even, you know, earth versus earth or something, and then, when we-when we did this series, uh, we started developing it, we thought, "oh, it'd be cool to use that idea, but make it like a team sport, and to show instead, you know, just show this harmony that's like, 'we're used to seeing waterbenders fighting firebenders, but now they're on a team together,'" you know, so...
David [Interjects.] Yeah, that's cool.
Bryan ... it was like, and-and it-it kinda hearkens back to like pro wrestling was, like, huge in the United States at the turn of the century, um, and was, like, the biggest sporting event. I think the biggest sporting event ever at that point was like a wrestling match [Laughs.] that lasted four hours long...
David [In a surprised tone.] Huh.
Bryan ... and it had, like, tens of thousands of people, and...
David and Janet [Simultaneously.] Wow.
Bryan ... you know, watching it, so, it just kinda, like, hearkening back to, like, the old boxing matches and stuff.
David Yeah, yeah, yeah.
A short pause as the scene in which Korra vainly attempts to meditate, and argues with Tenzin after he hypocritically tells her to free her mind and spirit, plays out. David chuckles.
David K... Korra's not into meditating.
Bryan Yeah, the...
Janet [Interjects.] Well, that's what I was gonna say earlier, [Laughs.] when you were like, "hey! Maybe people's personalities end up playing in!" [Laughs all around.] because this episode for me, when I read the script, I was like, "yep." [More chuckles.]
Mike You related to it.
Janet For sure. The impatience is more...
Mike Now, have you tried meditating before, or...
David [Ostensibly referring to the scene, in which Meelo, sleeping, falls onto his back; he laughs while the others focus on the subject of meditation.] Oh, I love Mee-
Janet I'm not very good at it.
Mike Yeah.
Janet Like, to be honest with you, the-the most calm I feel is when I'm active. So...
Mike Yeah.
Janet ... if I'm, like, riding my bike or hiking or something like that, that's when I feel like I'm meditating.
David [Sarcastically.] Or getting hit by a bus.
Janet If I'm sitting down like that, I'm like, "come on, come on!"
Mike Yeah.
Bryan Well, luckily, there are...
Mike [Interjects.] That sounds very much like Korra. That's... [Laughs.]
Janet I know.
Bryan There are other kinds of meditation. There are moving, moving meditations.
David I do uh, I do transcendental meditation.
Mike Yeah?
Bryan Very good for the creative process. Um, yeah, I mean, honestly, the entire... is...
David And my mantra is... I'm just kidding. [The others to burst out laughing.]
Bryan The entire imp-the entire, like, impetus, like, moment of inspiration for the whole Avatar world came during yoga, so, uh, there's something to be said for it.
David Oh, yeah.
Janet I know, I-I, yeah. [Laughs.]
Bryan It, uh...
Janet [Interjects.] I just have to work harder at that than I do at anything else.
Murmurs of agreement from all.
David Oh, that's cool.
Bryan I-I'm not so good at quieting my mind, either.
Janet Yeah.
Bryan It's a, uh, it's a beehive.
David chuckles in the background while, on screen, Korra bends herself up from the water below and into the open window of the bending arena. A short pause ensues.
Bryan So, we're gonna get ready to introduce, uh, two of the main characters. We had so many character ideas for this series that it was, you know, we had to kinda space out their introductions.
Mike Yeah, I remem-
Janet [Interjects; refers to Korra beaming as she comes across the pro-bending gym, and all the exercise and bending equipment inside.] I love how excited she gets about the gear, and...
Mike chuckles in the background as Korra is discovered in the equipment room by Toza. A brief pause ensues.
Bryan What were you gonna say, Mike?
Mike I was, uh, well, yeah, we, going off that, we had so many ideas like this; I remember this guy, Toza. Like, I think we had a bigger [Bryan affirms.] story for him, and, you know, he just, he kinda had this little cameo almost. But like, the idea was like this was a guy who kinda took Mako and Bolin under his wing and showed them the ropes and was kinda their trainer.
Bryan Yeah, like...
David [Interjects; refers to Bolin defusing the situation by pretending he knows Korra.] Is this Bolin's intro?
Bryan Yes.
Mike Yes, this is the first time we ever see him.
David P. J.! P. J. Byrne.
Bryan [Refers to Bolin and Korra's back-and-forth as they improvise what their relationship is to Toza, with Bolin trying to imply they are in a relationship, while Korra iterates they are just friends.] And this was, this bit of dialogue, this little banter they had, we used in the auditions...
Mike Right.
Bryan ... and you guys, we brought everybody back, like, two, three times, and, uh... so, we heard that over and over and over, but...
As they laugh, the scene is zooming away from Korra and Bolin to show the spacious interior of the Pro-bending Arena.
Bryan But uh, yeah, you-you guys all did-played off each other really well. It was cool, 'cause we got to bring you back together and get you in the booth together...
David Yeah, that's cool, it's always...
Janet Yeah.
Bryan ... hear how the voices will work. [On screen, Mako is questioning why Bolin brought Korra to the locker room.] So, there's your intro, David.
David Hey! [Muted noise of applause.]
Janet [Laughs.] That's David clapping for himself. [All laugh.] Very clear about that.
David So-yes, it is. 'Cause, no-no one else is doing it. [More laughs.]
Bryan Mako's only fan is Mako himself.
David [As they all murmur in agreement.] Yes, yes, what'd you call it before, "Moff"?
Bryan "Moff", I believe, is what the fans have dubbed him. [David laughs.] Yeah. [Refers to Korra earnestly trying to greet Mako just before the match begins.] So, this was cool, to show that, like, Korra, you know, the-she grew up way far away on the, you know, the bottom of the world, in the South Pole, and like, she's never had the chance to see this sport, and um, it's just cool that this is what she's all excited about. You know, it's like, getting to see this crazy, com-combat contact sport.
Short pause as, on screen, the pro-bender introduction for the match between Fire Ferrets and Golden Temple Tigerdillos begins.
Mike So, once we, you know, had this idea for this pro-bending sport, we had to come up with the rules. [Bryan chuckles.] Thankfully, Bryan is good at coming up with rules for sports.
Laughs from all.
Bryan Thankf-
Janet I'm glad you brought that up, because...
Bryan Thankfully, yeah.
Janet Yeah, that's what I think whenever I watch these [Mike affirms.] episodes. I'm like, "how did they even..."
Bryan Yeah, thankfully, Bryan has spent, uh, a ridiculous number of hours on the couch, watching... fighting. [Everyone laughs.] All forms of fighting.
David That's cool.
Bryan Basically when-when we were making the pilot of Avatar back in 2003, I had an apartment in Seoul for three months, uh, South Korea. Had no social life, didn't have any-have any friends there, so...
David Wow.
Bryan ... but there was a cha-uh, channel on cable there that just showed fighting all day, all night. So, I'd get home from, like, ten, twelve hours of working and just watch old K-1 kickboxing matches or old, like, Pride Fighting MMA tournaments and stuff, and all of that eventually, you know. Even when I waste time, it can uh, feed in...
David See? [Janet laughs.]
Bryan ... it can feed into an idea.
On screen, Hasook is knocked from the arena platform by the opposing earthbender and waterbender into the pool of water below. Short pause.
David You never know what's going to feed the uh, creative.
Bryan Oh, totally. Yeah, you gotta just keep your eyes open.
David [Quietly.] You just... yeah. [Louder.] You hear that, kids? [Laughs in background.] So far, meditation...
Bryan Yes.
Mike Yeah. Yoga.
David Yoga...
Bryan Waste-waste time, is what we're saying, yeah.
David Waste time and watch TV, and learn something.
Janet [Repeatedly claps her hands.] And don't have any friends.
Bryan [As the others laugh at the abundance of sarcasm.] No friends, isolate yourself, [Quickly taking it back.] no, no. No, these are all, definitely...
Mike Yeah, we always try to...
David [Briefly interrupting; refers to the slow motion shot of Bolin's earth disc hitting the Tigerdillo waterbender.] I love this little...
Mike ... bring our personal interests and passions into this, it's, you know, this is definitely more than just, just a job for us, for sure.
Janet Well, it shows, and that's what makes it such an amazing show.
Mike Yeah.
Bryan Yeah, we, when Mike and I set out to create Avatar, you know, the world that led to Korra, uh, it wasn't like, "what-what would people love?" and "what would be popular?" and "what's trendy today?". It was just like, "what do we love?". [David gives a murmur of assent.] Like, it just made a recipe full of the ingredients that we love, and we tried to make a show we would enjoy working on.
David You hear that, kids? Do what you love. [Mike hums his assent.]
Janet Yeah.
Bryan Well, I had a really great professor in college who-everybody's always like, "what kind of work should I put in my portfolio?". And he's always said, "the kind of work you wanna get." [David hums his assent.] You know? And I mean, sure, there's, like, you gotta be pragmatic, um, if the kind of work you wanna get is never gonna happen, maybe you need to make some adjustments, meet-meet the market halfway in the middle, but uh... but, yeah, I mean, t-this way you can really put your heart and soul into it.
David [On screen, Mako, the last Fire Ferret remaining, rallies against his three opponents.] Mako! [Mike and Bryan chuckle.] He's kickin' some butt right now. [Bryan affirms.]
Mike [Refers to Mako knocking each of his Tigerdillo opponents off the ring.] Mako's the one-man team right now.
Janet I'm just gonna say this, because I wanna say it every thirty seconds, [Mike chuckles.] so I'm just gonna say it this one time so everyone knows: every time I see even, like, a frame of this show, I cannot believe how lucky I am to be on it. [Mike chuckles.]
Bryan and David [One after the other.] Aww.
Janet I cannot believe how lucky I am to be on it.
Bryan One of my absolute favorite moments, eh, in the whole making of this series was uh, eh, it's-this particular series has taken a really long time to make, [David chuckles.] the episodes are really meticulous and-and challenging, and um, we finally had some animation, and we cut together a trailer, for Comic-Con, I think, and I came out of my office and I saw you guys waiting. Janet, I remember you were there, and-and uh, I think Mindy [Sterling, who provided the voice of Lin Beifong.] was there, and I-I-I was like, you know, I felt like I had a little secret, little-some gossip. I was like, "Hey, you guys wanna see something?" 'cause you guys were-weren't recording yet, and I brought you into my office and showed you the trailer, and I was sitting in my chair facing the monitor, and-and you guys were all standing behind me, and uh, so I-I wasn't seeing your reactions, and I turned around, and Janet was crying, just tears...
David [In the background.] Aww.
Bryan ... and she's like, as sincere as could be, like, [In an emotional tone.] "I can't believe how lucky I am to get to play this character and to be a part of this show," and, so, it-'cause it was the first time they had seen them move and had seen the animation, and um...
David Janet's...
Bryan ... and, uh, not, not...
Janet I'm super emotional right now.
David So sensitive, look at her!
Bryan Also, not the last time Janet has cried.
Janet No, [A chuckle from Bryan.] I've cried a ton. I cried when we went to the-with the premiere party, and we got to watch the-those episodes...
Bryan [On the verge of laughing.] You cried at the ADR [Automated Digital Recording, a re-recording of dialogue to more closely synchronize it with the animation.] session.
Janet I cried in the ADR session...
Bryan Your first moment.
David I'm gonna start crying right now. [Bryan affirms.]
Mike Well, how...
Janet [Interjects.] It's just that, [Struggles to find the words.] listen...
Bryan But, it was really touching, and...
Janet I, [Struggles to find the words.] you know, someone like Grey DeLisle, who's-who, by the way, enjoys and is grateful for every job that she has and couldn't be a more positive, um, you know, grateful person...
Bryan But she does, like, six thousand... [Mike chuckles.]
Janet But she does a ton. [Bryan affirms.] This, for me, I won the lottery. [Mike chuckles.] I won the lottery, like, for this to be my first main, staple, kind of, voice-over job, I-I-I, it's, I can't believe it. I can't believe it.
Bryan Now, I...
Janet [Interjects.] I can't believe it. [Janet and Mike laugh.]
Bryan Now, I had read or heard in an interview with you around the premiere time, that-so you, you sort of became familiar with Avatar, like, around, like, before the-before you heard about Korra?
Janet Mm-hmm. mm-hmm. But not l-but not long be-but [Bryan affirms.] not long before.
Bryan It was pretty fresh...
Janet [Interjects.] Yeah.
Bryan ... like, to you, at that time, yeah.
Mike 'Cause, I, yeah, I always wondered, like, how you guys, like, recording the fir-you know, this first season, like, where there hadn't been any animation done, and you might have saw some designs of the characters, I can't remember. But, like, you know, you were kind of flying blind a bit...
David [In the background.] Yeah.
Mike ... like, what that was, compared to now, when we're recording, and it's like, well, you've seen them move, you know kinda what the show's...
David [Interjects.] To me, it was just all off the script. Again, [Mike affirms.] going back to the story...
Janet [In the background.] The scripts are so rich!
David ... and the writing, it's like, "okay, this is what I'm doing, and we'll see what the animator," [Mike chuckles.] I mean, you know, "we'll see what, what I look like later." [Laughs.]
Janet Yeah.
Mike Yeah, yeah.
Bryan So, is there, now that we've done, you know, several of these, is there a moment where, sometimes when you're watching the show, [On screen, the scene goes from Korra in the equipment room to Korra trying the airbending training gates.] where your voice is kinda detached from your ego, where you feel like it's the character?
Janet Every-all of 'em. Um, I...
David I'm never detached from my ego.
Everybody laughs.
Bryan [To David, still laughing.] You need to meditate more.
Janet Uh, David leads with his ego. [A few more chuckles.] Uh, I-oh, I feel that way, um, about the entire series. I think it's, uh, it's the first opportunity I've really had to be sep-separate from my own performance.
Mike That's cool.
Janet Because there's enough space between when we record and when I see the final product that...
Mike [In the background.] Alright.
David [In the background.] That's really good.
Janet ... I-I have a vague awareness that it's me, but the storytelling is so good, and the animation is so gorgeous, that it allows me to totally sort of remove myself, and that's like such a gift, because I can't stand watching myself on camera. [Mike laughs.]
David Yeah.
Janet So, being able to, like, enjoy something I'm a part of...
Mike [In the background.] Right, right.
Janet ... without feeling any criticism, [Mike affirms.] um, is, like, unheard of.
David I-I've said it before, I'll say it again: I'm just happy to, to have the chance to play a-a uh, a "leading man" type.
Mike [Chuckling.] Right. [Bryan laughs.]
David Which, you know, may not happen in this lifetime. [Mike and Bryan laugh.]
Janet Oh, David. [Mike and Bryan laugh.] David's a hunk. I don't know why he thinks...
David [In a mock flustered tone.] Oh, stop.
Janet ... why he's saying that.
Bryan For-for us, like Mike and I, just the two of us [David gives an affirming murmur.] wrote this whole, you know, this whole Book One of Korra, but even though we split a lot of the, you know, we kinda split the scenes in half, or-or the episodes in half, we would go back over it together so much, and then, you know, the-the, all the artists infused so much life and-and another whole layer of uh, kind of like depth to the stories and the characters, and um, like you said, a lot of time passes. When I watch 'em, I don't even remember who wrote what line, it doesn't matter to me.
David Right.
Mike Yeah, yeah.
Bryan Like, it's-it's not like, "oh, that's my line". [Mike chuckles.] Like, I, it's just such a, um, it becomes its own thing, and that's what, I mean, that's kinda the definition of animation. You're giving life, you're animating something that did not have life before, and I love that feeling where, after all that hard work, you can kinda sit back and it is alive and it is, [Janet gives an inspired sigh.] is like coming back to you on its own, you know? [David gives an affirming murmur.] And-and um...
Janet That's such a great way of putting it.
David [After a short pause.] I count my lines every script I get. [Raucous laughter from all.]
Mike [Pretending to read a script; in a mock outraged tone.] "They only gave me five lines in this one? [David affirmingly murmurs.] I'm complaining."
Bryan We do too, and we make sure, we're like, "ah, David's ego's gonna get a little big."
Mike Uh-huh, yeah.
Bryan "Got to cut."
David Keep it-keep it under, keep it under fifteen. [Bryan affirms.]
Janet Yeah, I'd say that David's contract, he always has to have one more line than everyone else.
Bryan Exactly, we cut back, yeah.
David chuckles, leading into a pause in the commentary; on screen, Korra joins the Fire Ferrets on the elevated platform as Shiro Shinobi narrates the game in the background.
David Jeff Bennett.
Bryan Yeah.
Mike As the radio broadcaster.
Janet Love it, love it, love it.
David One of the funniest guys I know, by the way.
Mike Yeah, he's-he's a man of a thousand voices, for sure.
Bryan That guy [Mike laughs.] is, I-I just-I would love to see, like, brain wave readings... [Mike chuckles.]
David [In the background.] Oh.
Bryan ... of him like, while he's like reading these huge chunks of dialogue and it's like, nailing the performance, [On screen, Korra sends her waterbending opposite over the side of the ring and into the water.] with the great 1920s accent. [Janet gives an affirming murmur.]
David It's amazing.
Bryan Right off the bat. [After a short pause.] Yeah, definitely, like, those, like, career, like Dee Bradley Baker and Jeff Bennett-those guys that are just, like...
Janet Oh, Dee, Dee is so phenomenal. [David affirms.]
Bryan ... like, the best voice actors, it's like-yeah, they have such crazy range. It's an instrument that they play, they're masters of their-their voices.
David Yeah, yeah, it's amazing.
Janet And they're so generous and, like, complimentary and h-and humble about what other people are bringing to the table when I feel like they could so easily just, like, look at me and go, [With a mock derisive chuckle.] "oh, you." [Bryan chuckles.]
David Dee Bradley Baker's the biggest fan of this show, by the way.
Mike Oh, yeah.
Bryan Oh, he is. [Janet affirms.]
David He just loves it. So cool.
Mike Yeah, he did all the, he does Naga, Pabu, all the animal voices, and then, this season, he's the voice of Tarrlok.
Bryan Yeah.
David That's cool, man.
Mike So, it's always fun when we have, like, actual human characters [Laughs.] to, that he-that he can play.
Janet And-and...
David [Interjects.] I've played "Voice in Crowd" before. [Janet and Bryan laugh.]
Mike Yeah? Alright.
Bryan I feel like Dee could probably just do the whole series by himself. [Mike chuckles; David and Janet affirm.] We could probably save a lot of money, just, [Mike, Janet and Bryan laugh.] just like...
Mike Like, South Park-style?
Janet Yep.
Mike Or just...
Bryan Yeah. It's just like-I mean, the guy can sing the national anthem with a tiny man in his mouth.
Mike [Laughs.] Yeah.
Bryan Have you heard that yet? He closes his mouth-so, Mae, it was, like, [Mae Whitman, voice of Katara.] Mae Whitman's father; we were recording on-on Avatar, and-and he's like, "oh, have you heard Dee, where he has a tiny man in his mouth sing the national anthem?" and I was like...
David [In the background.] Oh.
Bryan ... "what are you talking about?". So, we asked him to do it. That's exactly what it sounds like.
David [Laughing.] Oh, I gotta hear this.
Bryan He closes his mouth, [Mike affirms.] and it sounds like there's a little man standing on his tongue, [Janet bursts out laughing.] and he sings the national anthem.
David Genius.
Janet I can't believe I haven't heard that yet!
Bryan Through a closed mouth.
David I just wanna reiterate, he plays, he plays uh, Nagu and...
Bryan [Correcting.] Naga and Pabu.
Janet Pa-Pabu.
David Naga.
Bryan But Nagu, that's the-the love affair, like that. [Mike laughs.]
Mike [Laughs.] Yeah.
David Yeah, that's the, uh, shipping.
Janet Okay.
Bryan That's the "Brangelina"-ish.
Janet Yeah.
David Shipping. "Nagu". [Janet, Mike and David chuckle.]
Bryan [A short pause until Korra looks up to find Tenzin silently standing over her, his expression stone-cold given how furious he is at her for disobeying his orders.] So, this was fun. Tenzin was this character, that, speaking of meditation and all this kinda stuff, we love the idea of this guy who, like, is trying to be that guy, is trying to be the Zen master, but, like, everyone around him drives him crazy, [Janet laughs.] just...
David Yeah.
Bryan [Refers to Tenzin's voice becoming steadily harsher as Korra refuses his command to leave the arena and return to Air Temple Island; continuing in a comically strained voice.] And he has a hard time, like, keeping a lid on it, and like... [Janet laughs.]
David Kids everywhere.
Janet Yeah.
Bryan Yeah, and, and that, like-I got into yoga because I was so stressed out working on, you know, animated shows and, killing myself working for other people and, like-so I got into meditation, er-er, into yoga, as, as a way to, like, try to calm down and calm my brain and-and be more efficient at work. And uh, it worked for a while, but then everybody in the yoga class drove me so crazy. [All laugh.]
David Yeah, yeah, yeah. Oh yeah.
Bryan Like, they would smell...
David [While the others laugh.] Yeah, yeah.
Bryan [Continuing to list his peeves.] Or they-their feet would be gross...
Janet You were being tested.
Mike [Laughs.] Yes.
Bryan Yeah, or they would moan, and you're not supposed to moan...
David [As Janet's laughter redoubles.] Oh, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah. I know the one you're talking about.
Bryan And I was like, "dude, shut up!" You know? And like-so, actually, I-I eventually quit yoga [Mike chuckles.] because everybody drove me crazy.
David Yeah. I was just trying to outdo everybody in my yoga class.
Bryan [Mike, Janet and David laugh.] Yeah, I had-I had that problem, too, I was a little too competitive, yeah. [Short pause.] Like, I wa-I'm always terrible at all the poses that everybody's good at, and then I would excel at the ones, like, no one could do...
David [Interjects.] Yeah.
Bryan ... and I'd be, I'm like, [Voice slow and gravelly.] "here it comes!" [More laughter from everybody.] totally, totally defeating the purpose of yoga.
Janet Completely!
David Yeah! Exactly.
Bryan Yeah, missing the point.
A long pause ensues, extending from Korra beginning her airbender-like motions to the line by Shinobi: "The Platypus Bears have no juice left, but Mako and Bolin are still fresh and juicy."
Bryan That line was my line, and I am proud of that one.
Mike [Chuckling.] "Fresh and juicy."
Bryan "Mako and Bolin are still fresh and juicy."
Mike Yeah, Bryan was good at writing the colorful commentary.
David [In the background.] Fresh and juicy.
Janet [In a dreamy voice.] Fresh and juicy... so good.
Bryan Well, there are-there are some commentators out there for uh, in the fight game; I won't name any names, but they-they're not really, like, good, [Mike chuckles.] but they're, they're entertaining in a-on a ridiculous level, just like...
Janet [Interjects.] Right. Like, "I can't believe he just [Mike chuckles.] described it that way."
Bryan [As he talks, Mike and David laugh intermittently.] Yeah, and there-there's one guy in particular who, I swear, he has just a sheet of little zingers that he's, like, he's, like, rehearsed and, you know, he's in his hotel room the night before the fight, like, "ooh, that'll be a good one!" [Janet laughs.] you know? He's like, aw...
Janet As he's reading the labels off of food, like...
Bryan Yeah ... so...
Janet "Fresh and juicy!" [Mike chuckles.]
Bryan That was one of my little tributes to that... [Mike affirms.] ridiculous profession.
Short pause as, on screen, Mako compliments Korra on her part in the victory and Bolin is busy absorbing the cheers of the crowd, posing to catch the applause from the audience.
Bryan Heh. Bolin's still like...
David [In the background.] Yeah, he's taking credit.
Bryan ... still soaking it up.
Mike There's a few, it's in this episode and then, I think, the fifth episode ["The Spirit of Competition".] where there's a few little Hulk Hogan tributes.
Bryan Yeah.
Mike From Joaquim [Dos Santos, co-executive producer.].
David Oh, really?
Mike Like, just the way he's like doing the, like, [Bryan makes several whooshing noises, imitating Bolin waving his hands around.] the ear-listen thing.
David Ahhh.
A short pause while the scene in which Tenzin and Korra reconcile their differences of opinion plays out, with Tenzin complimenting Korra on her airbending form during the match.
Bryan Ah, we're just getting wrapped up watching the scene.
Janet I know.
Bryan I think it's J. K.'s voice, it's so...
David Yeah.
Mike I love listening to it, yeah.
Janet I know, I-I know I said this at the Comic-I've said this at a couple of interviews in the-in the Comic-Con panel, but uh, I do like to point out that when I got to read my first scene with J. K. [Mike laughs.] and Andrea Romano, our amazing vocal director, said, "okay, we're gonna move on to the scene with Korra, uh, and Tenzin," and I said, "I'm sorry, could you just say 'with Janet Varney and J. K. Simmons' [Mike and Bryan laugh.] so that I can hear our names said [David and Janet laugh.] in the same sentence? 'Cause I am such a huge fan of J. K.'s."
The closing scene is playing, in which Korra and Mako stare across the moonlit water toward each other. David interrupts.
David I love this scene. Sorry.
Bryan Ah, I storyboarded this little part. This was fun.
David This is cool.
Bryan With the little, yeah, the little uh... or I-I did some revisions on it. This, like... this long loo-like, they don't know they're looking at each other, they're too far apart...
David Right, yeah, it's great.
Bryan ... but, you know, that kinda little parallel between them. [Mike gives an affirming murmur.]
David Great episode.
Janet [As credits begin to roll.] I hope it works out between those two. [Mike chuckles.]
Bryan Those crazy kids...
Mike I'm sure it'll be fine! [Janet and David laugh.]
Bryan Those kids were-were meant for each other.
Mike Thanks for doing this, guys. It was fun.
David Yeah, that was fun. Thanks for listening, everybody.
Janet Yeah. Pleasure!
Mike [After brief pause.] Stay tuned for more commentary.
David Coming up soon.
Mike With some other people. [Bryan and Janet chuckle.] In the next episode.
Bryan But we'll have David and Janet back for a couple more, too.
David Sweet.
Janet [In a mock tired tone.] Great.

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