Nickelodeon has premiered the fourth and final season of its hit animated show, The Legend of Korra. The season’s first episode, “After All These Years,” hit the internet on October 3 to the delight (and secret dread) of many. There is time to still watch the premiere episode, but just in case you would like a heads up on everything that happened before actually setting eyes on it, check out my run down of it all.

Here’s what happened on The Legend of Korra, Book 4: Balance, Chapter 1, “After All These Years”- 

In the opening credits, its made known that it has been three years since the events at the end of Season 3. The citizens of Republic City have adapted to the effects of the portals to the Spirit World being open including freeways and homes being built around the overgrown vines.  There’s even a park named after Korra, who has been away recuperating since her big battle in the Season 3 finale. In her stead the Air Nation has been traveling the world, helping others, but Republic City is anxiously awaiting her return.

Moments later, President Raiko is holding a press conference where the world is being introduced to Prince Wu, the great grandnephew of the deceased Earth Kingdom queen and heir to her throne. Prince Wu is preparing to take her place and Mako is revealed to be his temporary body guard. Asami is also being honored at the press conference. Thanks to her technology, a new monorail system has been built to bridge the gap between Republic City and the rest of the Earth Kingdom. Prince Wu tries to flirt with Asami, but she’s not interested. Instead, both she and Mako are excited for Korra’s impending return from the South Pole. Missing from the group, however, is Bolin, who is on a mission with Kuvira, the former Zaofu guard now shutting down roving bandits and working to re-unify the Earth Kingdom since the Earth Queen’s demise.

Meanwhile, back in the Earth Kingdom, Opal and Kai are on patrol and spot a band of thugs robbing a shopkeeper for her sack of food and supplies. Opal and Kai stop the bandits — and show off their new air bending flight suits in the process. Though the duo are successful in stopping the bad guys, the Governor of the town is fearful that Opal and Kai won’t be enough to keep his city safe. Kai and Opal reveal that the air nomads are spread thin right now, and they’re the only ones that can help.

Enter a speeding metal train, and aboard it is Bolin with former Metal Clan guard Kuvira, Varick, Zhu Li, and Baatar Jr., Suyin’s eldest son. Bolin and the others celebrate Kuvira’s success in unifying two more Earth Kingdom states, but Kuvira isn’t pleased and will not celebrate until all the Earth Kindom estates are unified. Just as they are in the middle of their conversation, the train is halted, and the engineer tells Kuvira that there is a blockage of rubble on the tracks. Kuvira and the others recognize this as a trap set back marauding bandits and Kuvira sets out to handle them on her own. After some savvy metal bending moves, Kuvira single-handedly detains all the bandits and offer them a choice: pledge loyalty to her for a chance at rehabilitation or remain imprisoned. They all eagerly accept and praise her as “The Great Uniter.”

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Back in Republic City, Mako is growing tired of being Prince Wu’s baby sitter. As he and Wu are leave an appearance, Kuvira supporters toss strawberry pies as Wu, which narrowly miss him thanks to Mako.

Turning the attention back to Opal and Kai in the Earth Kingdom, Kuvira’s train pulls into the devastated city under Opal and Kai’s protection. Bolin and Opal reconnect, and there’s a discussion of Opal’s disdain for Kuvira’s “unifying” methods. Bolin thinks that Kuvira is only trying to help, but Opal doesn’t see it as such. Opal is also reunited with her brother, Baatar Jr. Its revealed that he no longer speaks to his mother, Suyin Bei Fong, ever since he and Opal left the Metal Clan. Kuvira wants Opal to put the past behind them especially since she and Baatar are engaged.

As Opal and the others become acquainted, Kuvira requests the Governor speak with her alone in the train. Once on board, Kuvira gives the Governor a proposal, in which she will allow him control his state under her supervision. The Governor refuses, saying that Kuvira is nothing more than a conqueror interested in the state of Yai (his state) because it is rich with ore. Kuvira tells him that his people will perish because of his pride. Once the Governor emerges from the train, Opal and Kai realize that they will not receive help from Kuvira until the Governor relents and sings her contract. Kuvira gives him a day to think about it. Opal asks for help, but when Bolin says his hands are tied, she pushes him away.  Angered by Kuvira’s dealings, Opal and Kai tell the Governor they will do without Kuvira’s help and head over to the next town for food and supplies.

Opal and Kai retrieve boxes of food and supplies and load them on the back of their flying bison. On the trip back, the discuss the state of their relationships. Opal tells Kai that it’s tough being in a long distance relationship and it’s made tougher because Bolin works for Kuvira, who rubs her the wrong way. She says she hopes the two aren’t growing apart, since really does love Bolin. As for Kai, he says that he’s relationship with Jinora is pretty great. As the two talk, a plane full of bandits swoop down to plunder the supplies. Kai does his best to fight off the bandits, but his suit is slashed in the process. As he tries to go after the thugs, he’s unable to fly and Opal rescues him. The raiders make off with everything, forcing the Governor to sign over his state to Kuvira. The Governor tells both Opal and Kai he never had a choice in the matter.

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In Republic City, Mako is back to tailing Prince Wu and tells Lin Bei Fong that he cannot wait to escort Wu to the Earth Kingdom so Mako can return to being a detective. This is when Lin drops the unfortunate bomb on Mako that President Raiko turned over Mako to Wu to be his personal body guard indefinitely. Mako is in utter dread.

In Yai, Kuvira disperses a group of her soldiers, as well as a couple of robots among the city. Soldier and foot patrol hand citizens food and water and Kuvira announces that the state is now under her protection. She tells the Governor to pledge allegiance to her, otherwise she will leave taking everything with her. He unwillingly does so. As the citizens celebrate, Bolin spots Opal in the crowd and flashes her a smile. Opal in return hands her head low and walks off, causing Bolin to frown in befuddlement.

Later that night at Air Temple Island, Tenzin, the kids, Mako, and Asami all gather at the harbor as they see a ship from the South Pole approaching. Everyone is excited for Korra’s return — particularly Meelo, who wants Korra to see him as a man. Korra’s father Tonraq and her pet Naga exit the ship and make greeting expecting to see Korra waiting for him, but instead sees Tenzin. Tenzin is confused and tells Korra’s father that he hasn’t seen Korra since she left Republic City three years ago. Tonraq says that Korra left home 6 months ago, and has written letters saying that she was with Tenzin.

In the final minutes of the episode, Korra appears — with much shorter hair, in a ring, earth bending against another woman, surrounded by a crowd. Korra eggs on her opponent and ultimately loses the fight. When the match is over, the promoter approaches her and gives her cash. The promoter tells her that she looks like the Avatar, and she says that she gets it a lot. When the promoter asks if Korra knows what happened to the Avatar, she tells him she has no clue.

What did you think of the Season 4 premiere of Legend of Korra, “After All These Years“? Share your feelings and check out my post-cap reactions on Alja The Writer.