Episode 11: Skeletons in the Closet
As the Equalists claim Republic City as their own, Korra works around the clock to make sure everything is set for General Iroh's arrival in the coming days. When things fall apart quickly, the gang must act fast in order to counter the increasingly violent attacks that are sweeping the city. It isn't long before Korra discovers the truth behind Amon and a way to end this battle once and for all.
The Equalists patrol Republic City with their mecha tanks and troops as Amon has set up a stage on Air Temple Island, ridding people of their bending one by one. Hiroshi leads a rally in the park where he openly mocks Korra and states that Amon will lead the revolution into its brightest day. Korra and Mako overhear the demonstration, disguised as Equalists, as they head back to the underground refugee camp. Korra is constantly annoyed at waiting but Mako reminds her that the United Forces will be there the next day. Meeting up with Bolin and Asami, Gommu, the homeless man that Korra met on her first day in the city, shelters and feeds them; supporting her as he knows that benders and non-benders can live in perfect harmony without a war. Korra tries to sleep but is too nervous about the battle the next day. Mako tries to comfort her as they exchange words before going to sleep.
The next day, the gang hides in the harbor as they spot the United Forces in the distance honing in on the city. However, they realize that the zeppelins would have seen the boats by now and notice that the Equalist zeppelins are missing and that there are no patrols on the streets as there usually is. Iroh senses something is amiss too as his men hear a roaring buzz, seeing biplanes zoom from the north and attack their ships with bombs. They attempt to counter the attack as Korra goes in to help. She and Iroh take down a few planes together as they try to stop the surprise attack while the soldiers attempt to fix their sinking ships. After destroying a couple of planes, Iroh is knocked from the top of his ship into the bat. Korra dives in to save him as she takes him to safety. Korra heals Iroh's injuries as Bolin tells the General that Amon is always ahead of them with a plan. Korra declares that they don't need a plan that its time for her and Amon to fight one on one now.
Iroh draws up a few maps as he remembers the planes came from the northern mountains and that the runways must be beyond the ranges. The group splits into two units: Mako and Korra will go to the island to stop Amon while Iroh, Bolin, and Asami will take Naga to the north to stop the planes. Asami and Mako also take the time to resolve the differences they had, breaking up gently as they head their separate ways. The two put their disguises on as they infiltrate the island, spotting Amon at the top of it getting on one of his zeppelins. Deciding to sneak inside, the Lieutenant confronts them and tells them to head to the Arena for a rally Amon is holding in a few hours. They sneak into the attic as they find Tarrlok imprisoned there. Without his powers, he is surprised to see them as he mentions that he is Amon's special prisoner. Korra asks why Tarrlok gets special treatment as Tarrlok tells them the truth: Amon is actually his brother.
Tarrlok tells the story of how Yakone was able to evade arrest by getting plastic surgery and escaping to the North Pole where he married and had two children, the younger Tarrlok and the older Amon, who's real name is Noatak. As a child, Noatak believed in equality for all but when they found their abilities as waterbenders, Yakone trained them harshly and became more abusive towards them. Growing older, Yakone took them out to tell them the truth behind his history and that they have the ability to bloodbend as well. He informs his sons that they will master the arts and go back and take Republic City as their own to avenge him. Training in bloodbending, they start on animals every full moon until Yakone shows them how to do it without a full moon. Tarrlok struggles as he feels it is cruel but Noatak succeeds well, a maverick at the art. Yakone then orders the two brothers to bloodbend one another. After Tarrlok is bent, he claims he doesn't want to bloodbend anyone, the pain too intense. Yakone goes to strike him but Noatak holds him. He tries to escape with Tarrlok but he thinks of his mother as Noatak runs away. After that, Yakone stopped training him and eventually passed on. Tarrlok vowed to rule the city not like his father but as a politician but he dishonored himself when he became like his father.
Korra wonders how Tarrlok thinks Amon is Noatak as Tarrlok claims that when he was robbed of his bending, that he could feel it as Noatak's bloodbending. Mako knows that attacking Amon would be pointless as Korra comes up with a plan. If Amon is really a waterbender, exposing him in front of his supporters would ruin him and he'd have nothing left. They decide to head to the area and free Tarrlok, but he refuses, knowing that he'd hinder their plans. He tells them instead to defeat his brother for him as Tarrlok mournfully apologizes to Korra for all he has done to her.