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Set in the post-series comics era of the beloved Avatar: The Last Airbender franchise, fans will get to see a new part of the original timeline that they've never seen before. A stand alone comic about the best earthbender and inventor of metalbending, Toph Beifong. Written by Faith Erin Hicks (The Adventures of Superhero Girl, The Last of Us: American Dreams) and illustra Set in the post-series comics era of the beloved Avatar: The Last Airbender franchise, fans will get to see a new part of the original timeline that they've never seen before. A stand alone comic about the best earthbender and inventor of metalbending, Toph Beifong. Written by Faith Erin Hicks (The Adventures of Superhero Girl, The Last of Us: American Dreams) and illustrated by Peter Wartman (Stonebreaker, Over the Wall) and Adele Matera, the same team behind the Imbalance trilogy.


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Set in the post-series comics era of the beloved Avatar: The Last Airbender franchise, fans will get to see a new part of the original timeline that they've never seen before. A stand alone comic about the best earthbender and inventor of metalbending, Toph Beifong. Written by Faith Erin Hicks (The Adventures of Superhero Girl, The Last of Us: American Dreams) and illustra Set in the post-series comics era of the beloved Avatar: The Last Airbender franchise, fans will get to see a new part of the original timeline that they've never seen before. A stand alone comic about the best earthbender and inventor of metalbending, Toph Beifong. Written by Faith Erin Hicks (The Adventures of Superhero Girl, The Last of Us: American Dreams) and illustrated by Peter Wartman (Stonebreaker, Over the Wall) and Adele Matera, the same team behind the Imbalance trilogy.

30 review for Avatar: The Last Airbender: Toph Beifong's Metalbending Academy

  1. 4 out of 5

    Queen V

    edit edit 4.5 star!! not me obsessing over Toph edit: I GOT IT AHHHHHHHHHH YESSSSSSS. I'VE BEEN WAITING FOR THIS ONE, TURN IT UP Me finding out that this finally came out: Me running to check it out from the library: Me realizing that I'll have to wait for weeks since it's in high demand: edit edit 4.5 star!! not me obsessing over Toph edit: I GOT IT AHHHHHHHHHH YESSSSSSS. I'VE BEEN WAITING FOR THIS ONE, TURN IT UP Me finding out that this finally came out: Me running to check it out from the library: Me realizing that I'll have to wait for weeks since it's in high demand:

  2. 4 out of 5

    Dianna ♡ the belle and the book ♡

    a solo comic just for the Melon Lord??? can't it come any sooner?! a solo comic just for the Melon Lord??? can't it come any sooner?!

  3. 5 out of 5

    Manisha

    Another great addition to the Avatar comics. We see Toph being typical Toph: bored while living a routine life, and in search of something interesting. We see what Toph is like as a teacher, what motivates her to look after kids in need, and a rare form of bending. There were quite a few throwbacks to the original series too, including from one of my favourite episodes. Another great addition to the Avatar comics. We see Toph being typical Toph: bored while living a routine life, and in search of something interesting. We see what Toph is like as a teacher, what motivates her to look after kids in need, and a rare form of bending. There were quite a few throwbacks to the original series too, including from one of my favourite episodes.

  4. 5 out of 5

    April (Aprilius Maximus)

    "Wisdom can come from unexpected places, tiny but powerful earthbender lady." representation: Asian inspired world and characters. [trigger warnings are listed at the bottom of this review and may contain spoilers] ★★★★★ AS IF I'D GIVE TOPH ANYTHING LESS THAN 5 STARS. WHAT A BADASS. trigger warnings: fantasy violence. "Wisdom can come from unexpected places, tiny but powerful earthbender lady." representation: Asian inspired world and characters. [trigger warnings are listed at the bottom of this review and may contain spoilers] ★★★★★ AS IF I'D GIVE TOPH ANYTHING LESS THAN 5 STARS. WHAT A BADASS. trigger warnings: fantasy violence.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Antoine Bandele

    This one was super solid. Not a true 5-star, more like a 4.5, but a solid one. I really enjoyed seeing this side of Toph, because her being a teacher would definitely not be her cup of tea for too long. But to see her interacting with her origins in earthbending is pretty cool and there are some neat things that pop up. The story has heavy themes of doing work for work and doing work for passion, which I think went over pretty well. I would definitely recommend this one over Katara's one-shot. This one was super solid. Not a true 5-star, more like a 4.5, but a solid one. I really enjoyed seeing this side of Toph, because her being a teacher would definitely not be her cup of tea for too long. But to see her interacting with her origins in earthbending is pretty cool and there are some neat things that pop up. The story has heavy themes of doing work for work and doing work for passion, which I think went over pretty well. I would definitely recommend this one over Katara's one-shot.

  6. 5 out of 5

    jessica ☾

    I loved seeing more young Toph, as well as a guest appearance from our favorite secret tunnel singers!

  7. 4 out of 5

    Leah Waters

    So cute!!! This book made me laugh out loud. These ATLA comics are such a delight. :)

  8. 4 out of 5

    .

    [October 15th, 2020]: ive just finished the katara comic and it was cool so im excited to get a closer look at toph's metalbending academy in this comic, in just 124 days!! ~~ [July 26th, 2020]: YESSS a comic focusing only on toph and her metalbending academy is exactly what she deserves!! february 16, 2021 cannot come soon enough💥💥 i hope one day suki or azula get solo comics too bc they deserve so!! much!! better!!! [October 15th, 2020]: ive just finished the katara comic and it was cool so im excited to get a closer look at toph's metalbending academy in this comic, in just 124 days!! ~~ [July 26th, 2020]: YESSS a comic focusing only on toph and her metalbending academy is exactly what she deserves!! february 16, 2021 cannot come soon enough💥💥 i hope one day suki or azula get solo comics too bc they deserve so!! much!! better!!!

  9. 5 out of 5

    Gretal

    This was great fun

  10. 5 out of 5

    Courtney

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. As always anything from the Avatar team is automatically five stars for me. I read this new installment in the Avatar universe after the announcement of Avatar Studios. Which has me super excited. With that little tidbit being said I will get to the review now which will contain spoilers. You have been warned. Toph is bored of running her metalbending academy since it is the same routine. So she invites Suki and Sokka to come visit her. They drag her to a concert which is the band from book two As always anything from the Avatar team is automatically five stars for me. I read this new installment in the Avatar universe after the announcement of Avatar Studios. Which has me super excited. With that little tidbit being said I will get to the review now which will contain spoilers. You have been warned. Toph is bored of running her metalbending academy since it is the same routine. So she invites Suki and Sokka to come visit her. They drag her to a concert which is the band from book two who sings secret tunnel and they are on tour around the Earth Kindgom. In Toph fashion she gets bored and finds that the local town is running an illegal bending arena. Toph sneaks in hoping to smash some heads but when they spot her; the whole arena clears out since Toph is Avatar Aang's friend. Oh we also see an untrained Lava Bender fighting too. She is disappointed of course. Another boring day goes by at her academy and at nightfall she uses her feet to find a new location of the arena. While searching for her destination she comes across the front man of the band and she protects him from crazed fans. Fast forward and she drops in and invites all of the kids fighting to live at her academy.

  11. 4 out of 5

    j o a n n a 🦊

    Toph definitely isn't my favorite character so I was definitely a bit *skeptical* going into this one. I just find Toph to be abrasive and annoying. Despite all of that, I enjoyed this graphic novel. It was fun to see Suki and Sokka and the "Secret Tunnel" band again. It was also fun to watch Toph find more kids to teach and find some more unique earth benders like her. ☘️🪨🏫 Toph definitely isn't my favorite character so I was definitely a bit *skeptical* going into this one. I just find Toph to be abrasive and annoying. Despite all of that, I enjoyed this graphic novel. It was fun to see Suki and Sokka and the "Secret Tunnel" band again. It was also fun to watch Toph find more kids to teach and find some more unique earth benders like her. ☘️🪨🏫

  12. 5 out of 5

    Brigi

    This was a bit simple, but I'm *always* thirsty for more ATLA content! It was fun and I'm glad we got to see lavabending, which was more common in Legend of Korra, but didn't feature in ATLA. (my one quip is that the way Sokka was drawn he looked about 7 years old XD) This was a bit simple, but I'm *always* thirsty for more ATLA content! It was fun and I'm glad we got to see lavabending, which was more common in Legend of Korra, but didn't feature in ATLA. (my one quip is that the way Sokka was drawn he looked about 7 years old XD)

  13. 4 out of 5

    Daphne

    This was a fun comic with a fun story, though I feel like compared to the Katara comic it was lacking a bit of depth. It felt shorter to me. I did enjoy seeing a few more hints at connections between A:TLA and Korra in this comic and I enjoyed seeing more of Toph. But I read it in about 15 minutes and I doubt I'll reread it a lot. So a 3 star from me. This was a fun comic with a fun story, though I feel like compared to the Katara comic it was lacking a bit of depth. It felt shorter to me. I did enjoy seeing a few more hints at connections between A:TLA and Korra in this comic and I enjoyed seeing more of Toph. But I read it in about 15 minutes and I doubt I'll reread it a lot. So a 3 star from me.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Preston Popoff

    This was a pretty fun story, but probably the weakest of the Avatar comics that I've read so far. Similar to the Katara story, it started off in a tough spot simply because it's a standalone rather than a trilogy, but to add to that it felt even shorter because not that much actually happens in the story. There are some cool call-backs (and call-forwards?) that were enjoyable to see, and the characterization wasn't bad. Really it comes down to me wishing it was longer and more fleshed out. This was a pretty fun story, but probably the weakest of the Avatar comics that I've read so far. Similar to the Katara story, it started off in a tough spot simply because it's a standalone rather than a trilogy, but to add to that it felt even shorter because not that much actually happens in the story. There are some cool call-backs (and call-forwards?) that were enjoyable to see, and the characterization wasn't bad. Really it comes down to me wishing it was longer and more fleshed out.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Taylor Maldonado

    It's fun as an extension to the rest but I give it one star less than five because it's super short and much less than you'd expect of the series I'd say, however I would also say its worth it to read it for the sake of reading the series! Toph is one of my favorites and this speaks to her character truly It's fun as an extension to the rest but I give it one star less than five because it's super short and much less than you'd expect of the series I'd say, however I would also say its worth it to read it for the sake of reading the series! Toph is one of my favorites and this speaks to her character truly

  16. 5 out of 5

    Kelsey

    I LOVED this! I forgot how much I loved Toph. This was such a great read! Thank you to Dark Horse ( Random House) and Edelweiss+ for the e-ARC in exchange for an honest review

  17. 4 out of 5

    Denise

    3.5/5 I was really excited to see my girl Toph headline her own standalone comic. She’s been a favorite of mine since the animate series, and.I loved her growth throughout the sequel comics as well. She’s clearly always been headstrong and stubborn, but Team Avatar softened a few of her edges, and made her a bit more empathetic to those who weren’t on her level. Here, we see her dealing with the ennui of “settling” into her successful metal bending school, and feeling like the exciting days of ad 3.5/5 I was really excited to see my girl Toph headline her own standalone comic. She’s been a favorite of mine since the animate series, and.I loved her growth throughout the sequel comics as well. She’s clearly always been headstrong and stubborn, but Team Avatar softened a few of her edges, and made her a bit more empathetic to those who weren’t on her level. Here, we see her dealing with the ennui of “settling” into her successful metal bending school, and feeling like the exciting days of adventure and discovery are behind her. We see some of this maturing in the earlier comics, which is why this one-shot didn’t totally feel like a building block for her story. I had the same issue with Katara and the Pirate’s Silver which was great fun, but didn’t feel super necessary to the overall A:TLA canon. Toph comes to a resolution of her own feelings fairly quickly, and her interest in the lava bender felt more like a piece of a larger story, rather than one that could be wrapped up so quickly. I was so pumped to see my other two faves, Sokka and Suki, come onto the scene, but I felt like they were really underused, more like a frame story than actual figures in the plot, which was a real shame! Sokka always gets the short end of the stick anyway, and this could have been a really fun way for him to get a bit more page time. But I’m grateful for any chance to read about these goofs, so I can’t complain too much. I can only hope that Suki’s standalone comic, coming out this summer, holds up for me! Like all the other A:TLA comics, this is a quick fun read that still has the trademark humor and delicate issues that makes the whole franchise so great. While I don’t know that it’s the strongest of the bunch, it will certainly satisfy existing fans who want a bit of extra time with these characters.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Online Eccentric Librarian

    More reviews (and no fluff) on the blog http://surrealtalvi.wordpress.com/ Chronologically taking place (sometime) after the events of "The Rift", this standalone adventure concentrates on the ever delightful Toph and the trio of teachers from the Metalbending academy: Ho Tun, Penga and the Dark One. Returning are side characters Sokka, Suki and the surfer-hippie music group from the episode "The Cave of Two Lovers". In typical avatar style, we get some funny antics, witty dialogue and more More reviews (and no fluff) on the blog http://surrealtalvi.wordpress.com/ Chronologically taking place (sometime) after the events of "The Rift", this standalone adventure concentrates on the ever delightful Toph and the trio of teachers from the Metalbending academy: Ho Tun, Penga and the Dark One. Returning are side characters Sokka, Suki and the surfer-hippie music group from the episode "The Cave of Two Lovers". In typical avatar style, we get some funny antics, witty dialogue and more depth than you anticipate. Story: Toph is bored as her school operates basically by itself and her students are very skilled. Without much to do, she wanders accidentally into an illegal bending tournament reminiscent of her own past, only to discover she's now viewed as "The Man" rather than the rebel of her youth (ok well, herself a few years ago). The story itself is pretty short and straightforward and the main meat is in the soul searching Toph does to figure out who she really wants to be - a path likely most of us go through when passing through teens to adulthood. There's also some action, but I almost feel like it has been added in as an afterthought. The art is a bit more plain than in some of the other comics, but still very good. Add in the several funny moments (like Suki fangirling the band) and you have another worthy addition to the family of Avatar comics. Reviewed from an advance reader copy provided by the publisher.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Dana

    This ATLA adventure takes place after Toph establishes the Metalbending Academy in Yu Dao and after she's been made an executive partner of Earthenfire Industries from the previous ATLA adventures (The Rift). Toph finds herself teaching, but she feels run-down with the regular routine of running the school. A well-known band also finds itself in a surge of popularity and fans, but one member feels that the soul of their music has changed. Some students feel as if they must prove their might and This ATLA adventure takes place after Toph establishes the Metalbending Academy in Yu Dao and after she's been made an executive partner of Earthenfire Industries from the previous ATLA adventures (The Rift). Toph finds herself teaching, but she feels run-down with the regular routine of running the school. A well-known band also finds itself in a surge of popularity and fans, but one member feels that the soul of their music has changed. Some students feel as if they must prove their might and strength to their instructor to pull her out of her 'funk'. And a new earthbender tries a new skill, previously seen in Legend of Korra only, and tries to learn control and restraint. There were a lot of cool things in this ATLA adventure. I absolutely loved that they had a story just about Toph, my favorite character. I also liked that they included other things and characters from the ATLA universe that people have been curious about (SECRET TUNNEL!). I also loved that it featured women and was written by a women (MORE PLEASE!). I think that this story tied some loose strings together from the ATLA, while also developed some of their chief characters, and laid the ground work for some things in LOK. I liked the variety, the bending discovery that's made, the bands involvement, and the changes made to the school. My one gripe is I definitely wanted more Toph. I felt like this spent equal amounts of time with each side of the story when I really wanted a Toph extravaganza. That's probably just my Toph bias speaking. Overall, a great edition to the ATLA universe.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Caroline Sheppard

    Toph Beifong’s Metalbending Academy is the second book in the “girls of Avatar” oneshot series, preceded by Katara and the Pirate’s Silver. The story focuses on Toph, who has grown restless and bored by the same old routine of teaching metalbending to her students day after day. Toph truly thrives on excitement and action, in which she has been lacking lately. To make matters worse, she unintentionally breaks up a secret underground earthbending tournament after people feared that she would shut Toph Beifong’s Metalbending Academy is the second book in the “girls of Avatar” oneshot series, preceded by Katara and the Pirate’s Silver. The story focuses on Toph, who has grown restless and bored by the same old routine of teaching metalbending to her students day after day. Toph truly thrives on excitement and action, in which she has been lacking lately. To make matters worse, she unintentionally breaks up a secret underground earthbending tournament after people feared that she would shut them down since she was friends with the Avatar. As Toph struggles with her new post-war life, she has a heart to heart with a familiar singing nomad and begins to see her school in a new light. All in all, this book is a really fun, heartwarming read. It was really nice to be able to see Toph get the spotlight with this book, as it’s been a little while since she’s been the center of attention in the Avatar graphic novels. Faith Erin Hicks’ writing is excellent, she truly nails it with the dialogue and it feels like I can hear the characters’ voices in my head as I read. Combined with Peter Wartman’s artwork, which just keeps improving with each Avatar book he draws, makes it feel as though you’re watching an episode of the show. Having oneshot books like this to focus in on certain characters are great additions to the Avatar universe. Can’t wait for the next book, Suki Alone!

  21. 4 out of 5

    Storm

    Toph "I'm proud of Beifong Metalbending Academy, but why does my life there feel sou ... Routine? Why do I feel like my bending abilities aren't being Challenged? I'm not inventing new bending techniques or saving the world, I'm just teaching bender kids to do their stances, day after day. Meanwhile, there are kids out on the streets ... discovering techniques I've never seen before ... That used to be me. But now I'm the bender establishment. Sokka and Suki visit Toph's Metal Bending academy, wh Toph "I'm proud of Beifong Metalbending Academy, but why does my life there feel sou ... Routine? Why do I feel like my bending abilities aren't being Challenged? I'm not inventing new bending techniques or saving the world, I'm just teaching bender kids to do their stances, day after day. Meanwhile, there are kids out on the streets ... discovering techniques I've never seen before ... That used to be me. But now I'm the bender establishment. Sokka and Suki visit Toph's Metal Bending academy, which is flourishing, upgraded and running like clockwork. Toph tells them she is bored and longs for a return to the days when things were uncertain, where she was challenged and grew from overcoming those challenges. Then, she discovers a promising bender at an underground bending tournament, which quickly breaks up because Toph is too famous. The excitement is back! This is a very good Toph story which fits snugly in the Avatar Universe, telling a sweet, yet very philosophical story. Really liked it even though I had to wait ages to read it.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Paul Decker

    *I received this book as an eARC from Dark Horse Books via Edelweiss. I voluntarily read and reviewed an advanced copy of this book. All thoughts and opinions are my own.* Continuing the amazing comic stories following the characters from the original Avatar tv series, this book focuses on Toph and her Metalbending academy. Sokka and Suki visit Toph and we get a look at the amazing new facilities that have been built. Toph is bored. She needs a challenge and isn't used to having such a consistent *I received this book as an eARC from Dark Horse Books via Edelweiss. I voluntarily read and reviewed an advanced copy of this book. All thoughts and opinions are my own.* Continuing the amazing comic stories following the characters from the original Avatar tv series, this book focuses on Toph and her Metalbending academy. Sokka and Suki visit Toph and we get a look at the amazing new facilities that have been built. Toph is bored. She needs a challenge and isn't used to having such a consistent lifestyle. Some other characters from the show make an appearance in this book. And lava bending! Over the course of the book, Toph struggles to grow as a character/leader/teacher/mentor. What happens when passions turn into comfortable lifestyles and success. I give this book a 4/5. There's only 80 pages and it's a good story. A must-read for those fans continuing these stories through the comics.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Colleen

    I want to talk about three things: a blast from the past, Toph's earth bending abilities/bending, and rare earth bending. Blast from the Past The singing nomads are back! I loved their badgermole song in the original series. It also seems like Toph gets advice from somewhat unlikely sources: Iroh once and now Chong. Toph's Earth Bending Toph is scary! She knows regular earth bending, sand bending, metal bending, crystal bending, and seems to know another type of earth bending that is incredibly ra I want to talk about three things: a blast from the past, Toph's earth bending abilities/bending, and rare earth bending. Blast from the Past The singing nomads are back! I loved their badgermole song in the original series. It also seems like Toph gets advice from somewhat unlikely sources: Iroh once and now Chong. Toph's Earth Bending Toph is scary! She knows regular earth bending, sand bending, metal bending, crystal bending, and seems to know another type of earth bending that is incredibly rare. Unlike fire, water, and air benders, earth benders can be quite powerful if they can successfully manipulate the different forms of earth, unless you are Bumi who is able to bend earth with just his CHIN! Yet, mastering those different forms takes practice. Sand acts different from metal. Rare Earth Bending No, I am not talking about rare earth metals, a specific type of elements on the periodic table. I am talking about a rare form of earth bending. This form has me thinking on what this style looks like. Is it like earth bending cross with another bending style. Also could this other bending style manipulate this earth form as well or is it too much like earth? We know water benders can bend things that contain water, so could this other bender bend this rare earth bending as well or would it take too much effort? Verdict: This was quite good!

  24. 4 out of 5

    Allysia

    This was an, overall, fine story. But it never really reaches above that. While I love the premise of Toph being dissatisfied with routine life after the war... it ultimately felt that it didn't amount to anything. There wasn't much time for emotion, considering it's so short, and far too much of the page time is spent on characters that, frankly, I just don't care about (Toph's metalbending students, to be exact). There isn't enough time or effort here to give them any depth, so they come off as This was an, overall, fine story. But it never really reaches above that. While I love the premise of Toph being dissatisfied with routine life after the war... it ultimately felt that it didn't amount to anything. There wasn't much time for emotion, considering it's so short, and far too much of the page time is spent on characters that, frankly, I just don't care about (Toph's metalbending students, to be exact). There isn't enough time or effort here to give them any depth, so they come off as caricatures rather than people I'm excited to follow. The ending was sweet, with Toph rediscovering why she set out to start the school in the first place, and some nice scenes with Sokka and Suki, but overall not much here that makes it worth the read.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Thom Matthews

    I feel rather conflicted about this comic and wonder if it was a cash grab for saps like me who love avatar and consume nearly all related content. The comic isn’t expensive, but it isn’t good. Katara’s story wasn’t necessary but it was at least fun. The art seemed better in that too. This comic felt uninspired. That said, the character voice for Toph and Chong are spot on. It seems like a good direction for Toph. But so much could have been done differently and better. For such a short comic it I feel rather conflicted about this comic and wonder if it was a cash grab for saps like me who love avatar and consume nearly all related content. The comic isn’t expensive, but it isn’t good. Katara’s story wasn’t necessary but it was at least fun. The art seemed better in that too. This comic felt uninspired. That said, the character voice for Toph and Chong are spot on. It seems like a good direction for Toph. But so much could have been done differently and better. For such a short comic it had way too much fluff. This does make me worried for the Suki comic although hers is the only stand alone that seems necessary at all.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Mallory

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. That was cute! I loved Toph’s passion for her school getting reignited. It was very on brand for her to be bored with routine. I also enjoyed seeing a softer moment where she talks about how much she cares about her students and wants a safe space for earthbending kids. It was nice. And having Sukka appear at the begging and end? What a treat! FEH really understands how neglected Suki has been and is making up for it. Also, Suki being a fan of Trustfully In Love? It’s maybe the first bit of char That was cute! I loved Toph’s passion for her school getting reignited. It was very on brand for her to be bored with routine. I also enjoyed seeing a softer moment where she talks about how much she cares about her students and wants a safe space for earthbending kids. It was nice. And having Sukka appear at the begging and end? What a treat! FEH really understands how neglected Suki has been and is making up for it. Also, Suki being a fan of Trustfully In Love? It’s maybe the first bit of characterization we’ve gotten from her outside of “Kyoshi warrior” and “Sokka’s girlfriend.” It was nice to see Chong and Co. again too! And Sokka’s displeasure at seeing them.

  27. 5 out of 5

    Cole

    Read this review and hundreds more at The Quill To Live. When you’re a legendary war hero, an undefeated earthbending master, and the inventor of metalbending, what’s your biggest enemy? Ennui, of course. Following the events of the TV show, Toph Beifong has established a luxurious metalbending school, where hopeful students can learn her newly invented craft. But Toph is so proficient, so forceful in her teachings, that the school practically runs itself, giving her little to actually do. Her for Read this review and hundreds more at The Quill To Live. When you’re a legendary war hero, an undefeated earthbending master, and the inventor of metalbending, what’s your biggest enemy? Ennui, of course. Following the events of the TV show, Toph Beifong has established a luxurious metalbending school, where hopeful students can learn her newly invented craft. But Toph is so proficient, so forceful in her teachings, that the school practically runs itself, giving her little to actually do. Her former students teach classes, the current students are progressing well, and life is good. For Toph, though, “good” is boring. Sokka and Suki visit Toph’s school and notice her predicament right away and take Toph to a concert (featuring an exquisite cameo from the SECRET TUNNEL band). Toph despises the concert, so she splits and ventures to an underground bending tournament for a bit of action. She even sees a lava bender compete. But when an audience member recognizes her as a friend of the Avatar, everyone bolts as though the police just showed up uninvited to an alcohol party at Josh’s house (his parents are gone for the weekend). Meanwhile, Toph’s students believe they are the reason for her boredom, so they resolve to prove themselves by entering the next underground bending tournament. Toph Beifong’s Metalbending Academy is the fan-service I so desperately craved but did not receive from Katara and the Pirate’s Silver. Toph is undeniably her classic self, fed up with the day-to-day and abrasively supportive of her wards. Sokka and Suki are true to form, though they’re only briefly featured. Trustfully In Love (aka the Secret Tunnel band) is as much a ridiculous joy as they were in “The Cave of Two Lovers.” Toph Beifong’s Metalbending Academy manages to tell a complete story. The characters learn and grow, and we see a side of Toph that she only rarely lets loose. Unlike its Pirate’s Silver counterpart, this installment adds a worthy story to the larger Avatar universe, and fans of the show will love it. The graphic novel leverages fan-service in a way that expands the world of Avatar. In the show, we never saw Toph struggle with the daily grind. She was constantly traveling with team Avatar, dealing with crises, and annihilating enemies with her expert earthbending. Here, we get a toned-down Toph who struggles to find her place in a world without the imminent threat of global genocide. And for a character who abandoned a life of luxury in favor of fighting the good fight, “normal” just won’t cut it. To see this new side of Toph is a real treat for Avatar fans. Not only that–this new facet is also a good enough reason for this story to exist. When Avatar stories trod new ground and explore different sides of the characters we know and love, that’s a win.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Greg Kerestan

    I have mixed feelings about the new batch of Avatar graphic novels. They've stepped away from the three-part more serious arcs that defined the previous run, and instead each book is a single self-contained filler episode. It always leaves me wanting more: more story, more momentum, more time in this world. However, there's nothing wrong with what little we DO get here. Toph is a great character as always, and we even get a return of Chong and his compatriots (of "Secret Tunnel" fame). The gap pe I have mixed feelings about the new batch of Avatar graphic novels. They've stepped away from the three-part more serious arcs that defined the previous run, and instead each book is a single self-contained filler episode. It always leaves me wanting more: more story, more momentum, more time in this world. However, there's nothing wrong with what little we DO get here. Toph is a great character as always, and we even get a return of Chong and his compatriots (of "Secret Tunnel" fame). The gap period between Avatar and Korra is slowly but surely getting fleshed out, and every puzzle piece that falls into place is a delight.

  29. 5 out of 5

    I Blog A Little Bit Of Everything

    AAH! I love Toph! I love this story! I love the musicians! I love everything. Maybe it’s because I like to make music, but I loved the conversations in this book about music and the difference between making it because you love it and making it because it’s your job. I found it really thought provoking and an honest reflection of the turmoil in the music industry. I also really loved this story. It is of course following Toph’s metalbending academy and was so fun! I love finding out more about t AAH! I love Toph! I love this story! I love the musicians! I love everything. Maybe it’s because I like to make music, but I loved the conversations in this book about music and the difference between making it because you love it and making it because it’s your job. I found it really thought provoking and an honest reflection of the turmoil in the music industry. I also really loved this story. It is of course following Toph’s metalbending academy and was so fun! I love finding out more about the different bending styles and how they exist in the universe. This comic also had lots of fun references and lines in it that made my Avatar stanning heart happy! <3

  30. 5 out of 5

    Anscar

    A nice but ultimately uneventful and inconsequential story. I kind of hoped/expected that this would set up Toph's path towards law enforcement, but there was little indication of that. The introduction of lavabending to Toph's story was very cool, but ultimately didn't really go anywhere. I also felt like much of the dialogue was rather... uninspired. Setting this in the comics timeline was definitely the right idea (and a step in the right direction from Katara and the Pirate's Silver), but I d A nice but ultimately uneventful and inconsequential story. I kind of hoped/expected that this would set up Toph's path towards law enforcement, but there was little indication of that. The introduction of lavabending to Toph's story was very cool, but ultimately didn't really go anywhere. I also felt like much of the dialogue was rather... uninspired. Setting this in the comics timeline was definitely the right idea (and a step in the right direction from Katara and the Pirate's Silver), but I do feel that it was an opportunity for more. I'm still looking forward to the Suki comic though!

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