A Possible 'Avatar: The Last Airbender' Season 4 Was Sidelined By M. Night Shyamalan's Movie

Avatar: The Last Airbender is a perfect TV series, full stop. No "perfect TV series for an animated show" or "perfect TV series for kids." For three seasons, Avatar: The Last Airbender delivered a rich, thematically complex, gorgeously animated story about a young boy who is charged with saving the world from an oppressive, conquering empire. It's a simple, and familiar, tale but the characters were so vibrant and the storytelling so tight that Avatar: The Last Airbender deserves its place as one of the best TV shows of all time. Then, the live-action movie happened and ruined its legacy — apparently in more ways than one.

Not only did M. Night Shyamalan's whitewashed disaster put people off ever watching the Avatar: The Last Airbender series, according to former head writer Aaron Ehasz, it also aided in scrapping a potential fourth season of the show. Now that is a worse crime than that one Earth-bending scene.

One of the joys of Avatar: The Last Airbender is that it ended on its own terms, with Aang's arc and the story of the Fire Nation's defeat coming to an elegant end with its third season. And according to Ehasz, that three-season arc was what was originally planned by creators and showrunners Michael Dante DiMartino and Bryan Konietzko. But as Aang's saga neared its conclusion, Ehasz revealed that there were tentative plans to continue the story through a fourth season.

"Truthfully, there was a moment in time when we all thought we would do a 4th season of Avatar: The Last Airbender. Then along came M. Night..." Ehasz shared in a thread on Twitter Monday, in what he swears was not an April Fools joke.

Ehasz revealed that one of his biggest regrets with the Avatar: The Last Airbender series was not being able to complete a redemption arc for Azula, Zuko's sister and the main antagonist in the third season who was driven insane by her own paranoia and insecurities. Ehasz said he'd "discussed" fleshing out this arc with DiMartino and Konietzko, in which Zuko would help Azula work through the trauma their father had put them through, just as Uncle Iroh had helped him.

But Ehasz emphasizes that it wasn't all Shyamalan's fault — in fact the director had encouraged them to do a fourth season, but that DiMartino and Konietzko wanted to focus on helping with the 2010 film's development (hopefully they'll have better judgment when it comes to the Netflix live-action series).

But as intriguing as an Azula redemption arc would be — to this day, she remains one of the most compelling female villains on TV — those three seasons of Avatar: The Last Airbender are pretty flawless on their own. And as much as I would like to spend more time with the characters of Avatar: The Last Airbender, I don't need a fourth season to add to that. The graphic novels already do a great job of tying up loose threads like the whereabouts of Zuko's mother, while sequel series The Legend of Korra grants us a new perspective on the beloved characters of the first series. Still, at least it give us one more reason to hate the movie.