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The Legend Of Korra Character You Likely Forgot Cobra Kai's Jacob Bertrand Played

"The Legend of Korra" was Nickelodeon's follow-up series to "Avatar: The Last Airbender," the latter of which has sometimes been hailed as the best animated show ever. Both center around the concept of individuals with magic powers utilizing those powers for the betterment of the world, and both heavily focus on social issues and communication, but only one of them had to struggle against the shadow of the other. Perhaps the strongest evidence of this was how "Legend of Korra" was written under exhausting studio duress (as chronicled by Vox), which led to the seasons feeling structurally disjointed.

In this way, every season followed a different antagonistic force, each of which focused on a single societal structure and how to potentially correct it. For the first season, the idea of equality was center stage, with a cult leader framing benders as elitists who consider non-benders substandard humans. That particular villain had a rich backstory that was given due exploration, and was given voice in part by Jacob Bertrand, one of the stars behind "Cobra Kai." 

If this doesn't immediately click, that's okay, and it might be because the voice role didn't feature a mohawk ... but thankfully, it did feature some cool (read: terrifying) fighting sequences. So maybe little Bertrand was always on a course towards karate. 

Jacob Bertrand voiced Young Noatak, the boy who would become a cult leader

In the first season of "Legend of Korra," a story arc simply labeled "Air," Jacob Bertrand worked on one episode as Young Noatak (via IMDb). 

The episode in question, "Skeletons in the Closet," follows Korra listening to the imprisoned politician Tarlok (Dee Bradley Baker, yes, the guy who usually voices animals also voiced the corrupt political figure, it's hilarious) about his childhood. As a child, he and his brother, Noatak — who would grow up to become Amon (Steve Blum), the bloodbending (a body controlling ability only known to select waterbenders) leader of the Equalists, a group intent on taking away bender's powers — were brutally trained by their father to become powerful waterbenders. 

Look, appropriately explaining Bertrand's role as Young Noatak requires a lot of exposition so, hopefully, all that made sense. While the adult version of the character is wholeheartedly radicalized to harm other people, the actual moment in which that ideology was cemented inside of him plays out while he's a child, when his father proved himself the worst kind of person. Bertrand, who would have been around the age of 10 at the time, performed this moment wonderfully, paving the way for the challenging character he would later play on "Cobra Kai."