You know, I honestly believed that Book 2 would be my favorite season. With the finale...I'm not so sure. I'll need to see Book 3 to decide, because Zuko's character arc was one of the reasons why I liked this season so much, and now I'm just confused/disappointed.
Book 2 did, however, give me my favorite character. TOPH! ♥ METALBENDING HELL YEAH! I can honestly say that Earth is my favorite bending style at the moment. I always did wonder why Earthbenders couldn't bend metal; doesn't metal come from the ground, like coal? (Now hopefully she can teach Aang that trick too. It'd be incredibly helpful against the Fire Nation, with how much metal they use. And will Haru ever make another appearance?)
I also liked Toph's development. Since The Chase, she's come to trust and reply on people when faced with her own weaknesses. She has friends. She did all she could to help Appa and felt guilt when she couldn't. She even developed an almost sisterly connection with Katara. I just love it. ♥
Book 2 also made me become more fond of Aang. I just found him more likable than in the first season. It might be because he's maturing
There's one point
And to get the shipping stuff out of the way, my thoughts on Aang/Toph: It's probably not going to be canon. Actually, the whole "let go of earthly attachment" thing kinda kills any Aang pairing. :( Will Aunt Wu's prediction be right after all? The Swamp still leaves me wondering, though... But in terms of interaction, Aang and Toph are just friends/master and student. Doesn't mean I don't still enjoy seeing them together, though. ♥
As for Sokka...on one hand, it annoyed me how much he was made into comic relief in the first half of the season. But I also loved his development with Suki, how Yue factored into it, and the moments with his father in the finale were just sweet.
....Wait. We never found out what happened to Suki, did we?! Ty Lee just said they beat them up and took their clothes, nothing about killing, so maybe she's okay?
Um. I don't think I have much to say about Katara. O.o Her scene with Zuko felt short and rushed to me, I'll have to rewatch it. It was nice that she began to trust him and treat him like a fellow human being, though he ended up betraying that trust, ARGH. AND I'M SO GLAD SHE DIDN'T GET RID OF THE SCAR ARGH. THANK YOU, AANG!!
Let's see, what else....JET! I loved what they did with him. I thought he was just a one-shot character, and he ended up having so much fascinating potential. Teaming up with Zuko, obsessing over Zuko and Iroh, fighting with Zuko, getting brainwashed, meeting up with Katara again, and then his final scene was perfect. A part of me is still wondering if there won't be more of him, though. The Rhough Rhinos were revealed to be his parents' killers- why include such a detail if you're not going to do anything about it? And what happened to Longshot and Smellerbee when the Dai Li got rid of the base under Lake Laogai?
Ba Sing Se. I loved the design of the city, how detailed it is and how so much thought was put into it. The brainwashing and the Dai Li was a brilliant idea. The Earth King was cute, though to be honest, Azula is a far better leader than he can ever be. (Not that she has the peoples' best interests in mind, but she definitely has solid leadership skills.) And now the Earth King is with Aang and co. What part will he have to play from now on? Oh, and HAHAHAHA, so much for "there's no war in Ba Sing Se"! XD Man...does this mean the Earth Kingdom is totally conquered now? That leaves only....the Water Tribes. o_o;
Azula and her girls. Just awesome. Azula is a character you love to hate in all the right ways. She's a total badass sneaky psychopath, that's what she is. ♥ Ty Lee's bubbly personality is something you wouldn't expect from the Fire Nation, so she's a bit like Iroh in that aspect. She's entertaining and her pressure point moves put the benders at a disadvantage for once. Her flirting with Sokka was also amusing. As for Mai, she could be developed a bit more. I found her kinda boring compared to her companions. I want to see her interacting with Zuko now that he's apparently joined Azula; that should be interesting.
Iroh. As awesome as ever. After Bitter Work, I'm convinced that he'd make the perfect Firebending teacher for Aang. He has an adorable friendship with Toph, and has already given Aang some advice. They've worked together, what, three times now? It's pretty much established from all sides that Iroh is with the Avatar. Hopefully he'll escape from Azula and....the entire Earth Kingdom somehow.
Which brings me to....Zuko. Yeah, I've been avoiding him so far. At first I was shocked- I kept waiting for him to stop attacking Aang and Katara, but he didn't. Then I was angry. WHAT HAPPENED TO "AZULA ALWAYS LIES"?! What happened to all that lovely character development?!? After all that buildup, he's still back where he started. Or maybe not. I'm really confused now. I'm not sure what to think. What I do know is that it made the finale feel anticlimatic to me. When he challenged Azula to an Agni Kai, I was like HELL YES and it felt like it was going in a good direction. Then....that. Also, he betrayed Iroh. Just....no words.
Happy!Zuko really creeped me out too. I don't know what was up with that. Hugging Iroh? "Let's serve these people tea! :D"?? O___o Did Iroh put drugs in his tea or something? Yeah...whatever.
In conclusion, this season had a lot of good things going for it. Hopefully Book 3 will clear up some of my confusion.