avatar the last airbender
Credit: nickelodeon

It's hard to imagine a different version of Avatar: The Last Airbender, but did you know quite a few things were different about the beloved show in its original pilot?

In the unaired pilot, which Nickelodeon recently released for free, Katara is named Kya and Aang is voiced by future Hannah Montana star Mitchel Musso (he was replaced by Zach Tyler Eisen in ATLA).

Everything's a little sped up in the pilot — we're introduced to Aang, Kaya, and Sokka after they've already met, while in the aired first episode audiences saw in 2005, siblings Katara and Sokka stumble upon the Avatar in an iceberg. Additionally, the pilot already features Momo, who doesn't show up until episode 3 in the actual series.

There are some slight personality differences as well; Kya is less strong-willed and leans more on Aang in the unaired pilot than in the show, and the airbender was definitely not the schmoozer we got to see. Weirdly comforting though, is finding out that Zuko has always been angsty.

The pilot was released on Sunday as part of Nick’s The Last Airbender: Origins, which dove into how the world of Avatar came to be. The special was narrated by creators Michael Dante DiMartino and Bryan Konietzko. While the unaired pilot was previously available on DVD and iTunes, this is the first time Nickelodeon has shared it for free.

DiMartino and Konietzko shocked Avatar fans last week when they announced they were stepping away from the highly anticipated Netflix live-action remake of the show due to creative differences. While people are understandably disappointed, the bright side is that ATLA's sequel series, The Legend of Korra, arrived on the streamer Friday.

Related content:

Avatar: The Last Airbender
  • TV Show
  • 3