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The Avatar: The Last Airbender Character You Likely Forgot George Takei Voiced

"Avatar: The Last Airbender" has been widely renowned since it premiered in 2006 (via Rotten Tomatoes) and for good reason. Created by Michael Dante DiMartino and Bryan Konietzko, the series captivated audiences with its rich world-building and deft handling of mature themes like imperialism, war, and self-empowerment. The anime-inspired animation and dynamism of Team Avatar's core characters even inspired some critics to label it the best-animated show ever.

With all of that going for it and more, it's easy to see why other show-making aspects of "Avatar," such as the voice acting, could go on the critical backburner. Indeed, the voiceover performances on "Avatar" feel underrated compared to some of the series' more eye-popping qualities, but what would the show be without Mae Whitman's self-assured Katara, or the cool, hushed voice of Dante Basco's Zuko?

In addition to the main cast of voice actors, "Avatar" featured a number of impressive guest stars over the course of its three seasons, ranging from Ron Perlman to Serena Williams. However, even the biggest "Avatar" fans might not realize that the series got a visit from the actor best known as Hikaru Sulu in "Star Trek." Here's the "Avatar" character who was voiced by George Takei.

George Takei played a Fire Nation prison warden

While the primary villain of "Avatar: The Last Airbender" is Fire Lord Ozai, the series introduces plenty of thuggish henchmen, vengeful spirits, and power-hungry underlings to keep things interesting. In Season 1, Episode 6 ("Imprisoned"), Team Avatar faces off against a self-important prison warden voiced by "Star Trek" star George Takei (via IMDb).

In this episode, Katara infiltrates a Fire Nation prison rig filled with imprisoned earth benders. Stuck on a metal ship (ah, the halcyon pre-metal bending days), the prisoners are unable to use any nearby materials to aid in an escape. However, with the help of Aang and some determined earth benders, Katara manages to incite a prison rebellion. Even Takei's cruel warden, who previously mocked the Earth Kingdom denizens for their seemingly broken spirits, gets his comeuppance when he's tossed off the ship. Although he pleads that he can't swim, a prisoner kindly reminds him that cowards float.

"Imprisoned" carries a certain amount of poignance when one considers the actor's real-life background. When Takei was a child, he and his family were forced into an internment camp in Arkansas in 1942 (via NPR) — a real-life analog for the anti-bending prisons in "Avatar." Despite Takei's traumatic experience, he brings levity to his role as the warden, imbuing the villain with equal levels of cowardice and evil.