Polygon

10 animated shows to watch after you’ve finished your Avatar: The Last Airbender rewatch 

Avatar: The Last Airbender is a troublesome act to observe, however fortunately, in the event you’re watching the collection for the primary time, sequel present The Legend of Korra is ready for you proper after. If you’ve already finished each of these, nevertheless, you may nonetheless be itching for a character-focused, plot-heavy, fantasy-action animated collection to fill the void in your coronary heart. What comes subsequent?

Many individuals would level to anime because the pure subsequent step, however in the event you’re not fairly prepared to dip into the anime pool but and also you’re hungering for serialized all-ages animation that isn’t afraid to push the boundaries of the medium and deal with deeper themes, then listed below are 10 shows you must try.


Samurai Jack

Picture: Cartoon Community

The place to watch: Max

Samurai Jack pushed the boundaries of what all-ages motion might seem like. (There’s a purpose he principally fought robots within the first 4 seasons — no blood!) Genndy Tartakovsky’s sci-fi motion collection follows a samurai who, after being displaced into the distant future, should defeat an evil demon so as to return residence. The struggle sequences are stellar and the animation is wonderful. The present returned in 2017 to wrap up for one remaining (darker and adult-tailored) season.

Teen Titans

Beast, Starfire, Robin, Raven, and Cyborg sitting on the couch at their headquarters watching TV

Picture: Warner Media

The place to watch: Max

Teen Titans did simply as a lot as ATLA in bringing anime sensibilities to younger American audiences, particularly when it got here to its distinct visible type. Based mostly (loosely) on the DC superhero squad of the identical title, Teen Titans follows a bunch of 5 teen superheroes who battle superpowered villains to defend their residence. It begins out gentle, with episodic shenanigans and quite a lot of jokes, however finally builds to some extremely epic fights and highly effective character moments.

Younger Justice

DC Universe Young Justice Season 3

Picture: DC Leisure

The place to watch: Max

Some of the compelling parts of Younger Justice is the way it digs into the implications of a world filled with superheroes. Every season builds upon the foundations of its universe. What begins out as a easy staff of younger heroes taking over covert missions turns right into a sprawling interrogation of masked vigilantes’ place on the planet. It is rather a lot, however like ATLA and Korra, it doesn’t draw back from the more durable themes.

Voltron: Legendary Defender

End scene of Voltron Season 6, featuring the paladins

Picture: Netflix

The place to watch: Netflix

From the animation studio behind The Legend of Korra, Voltron: Legendary Defender was the primary indication that serialized animation had discovered a groove on streaming providers. It may be reboot of a toyetic franchise, however it’s worthy sci-fi epic, one which “takes the time to make you care about the characters and the travesties happening around them,” as our season 2 evaluation stated.

The Dragon Prince

Callum in The dragon prince trailer

Picture: Netflix

The place to watch: Netflix

With ATLA author Aaron Ehasz on the head, The Dragon Prince is probably the most pure successor to Avatar. It’s a extra conventional European medieval fantasy world than that of Avatar, however there’s quite a lot of element within the world-building that helps make it distinctive, particularly when it comes to the magic system. There are some foolish moments, however it nonetheless manages to deal with heavy themes of struggle and prejudice because the younger human heroes enterprise right into a magical world.

She-Ra and the Princesses of Energy

Glimmer, Adora, and Bow gear up for battle in she-ra

Picture: DreamWorks Animation/Netflix

The place to watch: Netflix

ND Stevenson’s tackle She-Ra turns the heroine from a easy He-Man spinoff into one thing extra advanced. She-Ra and the Princesses of Energy breaks down the chosen one narrative and provides compelling and fleshed-out relationships to all of the characters (notably Catra and Adora). It deftly balances heavier moments with lighter moments of character interplay. It’s the unbelievable queer magical woman present of our goals.

Kipo and the Age of Wonderbeasts

mandu, kipo, wolf, benson, and dave all hanging out

Picture: DreamWorks Animation/Netflix

The place to watch: Netflix

If your very particular favourite a part of ATLA was the funky hybrid animals, then you definitely’re in for a deal with with Kipo and the Age of Wonderbeasts. It takes place in a world the place humanity is compelled underground after a bunch of animal hybrids achieve sentience. It’s a brightly coloured, boldly visible post-apocalyptic world, with some very wacky set-pieces and characters. And like Aang, Kipo is decided to discover peaceable options in a world that always pushes her to do in any other case.

Maya and the Three

GAEL GARCÍA BERNAL as THE JAGUAR TRIPLETS and ZOE SALDAÑA as PRINCESS MAYA in MAYA AND THE THREE.

Picture: Netflix

The place to watch: Netflix

Cultural specificity meets kick-ass motion in Maya and the Three. Creators and husband-wife staff Jorge Gutiérrez and Sandra Equihua weave an epic story on this restricted miniseries, which follows a warrior princess in a Mesoamerican-inspired fantasy world who recruits three warriors to assist her defeat the gods. It has some actually cool struggle sequences, some stellar world-building, and a narrative that looks like a intestine punch in the easiest way.

The Owl Home

(*10*)

amity and luz dancing against the light of the moon

Picture: Disney

The place to watch: Disney Plus

Disney Channel hardly ever does serialized animation, however when it does it properly, it does it properly. The Owl Home begins off a bit episodic, when a plucky teenager named Luz finds herself transported right into a world of witches and demons. Nevertheless it builds up to a extra overarching plot, one which’s tremendous character-driven and includes quite a lot of rivals turning into allies. There’s a purpose one character will get known as the “Gen Z Zuko!” There’s additionally a very cool magic system and only a usually pleasant world to discover. Disney could’ve shafted The Owl Home with an abridged season 3 order, however it nonetheless shines.

Arcane

Vi (Hailee Steinfeld) in Arcane

Picture: Netflix

The place to watch: Netflix

I used to be on the fence about Arcane since technically it’s not an all-ages present. However whereas it does go slightly grittier on the violence, it by no means will get explicitly grownup. It’s a little bit of an ensemble present, the place a complete internet of characters — from road children to scientists to political ambassadors — find yourself entangled within the escalating tensions between courses. Sure, it’s a League of Legends present, however you don’t want to know something about League to get swept up within the steampunk motion and the tragedy of two sisters torn aside.

Honorable point out: Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood

Alphone Elric and his brother Edward, the “Fullmetal Alchemist.”

Picture: Bones/Crunchyroll

The place to watch: Crunchyroll, Hulu

OK, I do know I stated no anime on this checklist, however the ATLA-to-FMAB pipeline is a really actual phenomenon and I’d be remiss not to embrace the masterpiece that’s Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood. In the event you’re a giant Avatar fan who has but to make the leap into anime, then Fullmetal Alchemist is the excellent leap.

It follows a younger, gifted alchemist named Edward Elric who searches for the thinker’s stone so as to return his youthful brother, Alphonse, to his physique, which he misplaced years in the past in an try to resurrect their mom. However alongside the best way, Edward and Alphonse uncover a darkish corruption of their nation that they have to cease. It has every little thing nice about ATLA — cool powers, nice struggle sequences, compelling characters, fascinating world-building — but in addition interrogates the concept generally, after you’ve performed some horrible issues, you might have to make it proper.

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