When Avatar: The Last Airbender was on the air, and even since, many fans debated about two possible ships. The main ship war in the fandom centered around who Katara should be with: Zuko or Aang. These two ships, known respectively as Zutara and Kataang, both have validity to them and textual evidence. While the show might have made the relationship between Katara and Aang canon and even had them get married and have a family, there are still good reasons why Katara and Zuko would have been the better couple.
We’ve collected a list of the five biggest reasons why Katara and Aang was the right choice and five why Zuko would have been better for her.
10 ZUKO: THE AGE GAP BETWEEN AANG AND KATARA FELT STRANGE
During the series, Aang is 12 years old while Katara is 14. Now, a two year age gap is really nothing when in adulthood. So, once these two got a little older this wouldn't seem weird at all. However, when watching the series, the age gap did seem noticeable. Aang was still practically a child while Katara was a teenager. This made for a noticeable maturity difference that could seem a little weird at times. It often felt that Aang was crushing on the older Katara while Katara saw him more as a friend or brother.
9 AANG: THE TWO HAVE A CLOSE, CARING FRIENDSHIP
While the maturity levels between Aang and Katara might have been different during the series, there's no denying that these two were close friends. Katara was the first person to support Aang and help him on his quest to save the world from the Fire Nation. They clearly cared about each other and had each other’s backs. Some of the best relationships start as deep friendships, so this dynamic is good evidence for a romantic relationship.
8 ZUKO: KATARA AND ZUKO WOULD CHALLENGE EACH OTHER TO BE BETTER
Zuko and Katara have personalities that could clash at times. When Zuko first joins Team Avatar, Katara is understandably not happy about this and doesn’t trust him. While they do eventually become friends, their different life perspectives and different but strong personalities could make for a relationship that pushes the other to be better. This could make them both better people as the relationship wouldn’t be complacent.
7 AANG: BOTH OF THESE CHARACTERS HAVE BEEN ON THE SAME SIDE ALL ALONG
Zuko has one of the most interesting and believable redemption arcs of any character in an animated show. While he spends most of his life trying to find and kill the Avatar, his journey toward becoming a good character with the help of Uncle Iroh is fascinating.
While he is a good character in the end, the things Katar and Aang went through together as they sought to save the world are important. This created a strong foundation for these two that would contribute to a long-lasting relationship.
6 ZUKO: THEY SEEM TO HAVE MORE CHEMISTRY
When it comes to shipping characters together, one thing that’s important is chemistry. While these characters might be fictional and form an animated series, this is still something that fans can pick up on. Katar and Zuko are both more conventionally attractive and were a little older which made it easier to imagine them dating. Many fans could see the potential chemistry between these two.
5 AANG: THE SHIP IS CANON
This might be the most obvious reason why these two should be together. Of course, canon is one thing and fans of the series will ship who they want regardless, which is a great thing, too. But, the fact that these two end up together in the series is worth noting. While this shouldn’t stop people from wanting Katara and Zuko to be together, the fact is that this is what happens in the show.
4 ZUKO: KATARA WOULDN’T HAVE BEEN RELEGATED TO A SUPPORTING ROLE AS MUCH
One of the great things about Avatar: The Last Airbender is how the female characters are all diverse with unique stories. They are capable and have distinct personalities. However, having Katara as Aang’s love interest seems to relegate her a little bit into a supporting girlfriend role.
This seems more apparent in The Legend of Korra where we rarely even hear much about Katara in adulthood and hear a lot more about Aang and his accomplishments.
3 AANG: THEY LOVED EACH OTHER
When it comes to romance, having a deep, abiding love for one another is the key element. While a good relationship takes more than just love, the fact is that these two loved and cared for each other.
While in their younger years Anang’s crush on Katara might have been stronger, clearly Katar developed deeper feelings for Aang as well. Their love for each other is apparent throughout the series.
2 ZUKO: AANG AND KATARA’S FAMILY HAD A LOT OF ISSUES
When we see Katara and Aang’s children in The Legend of Korra, we learn that their family isn't perfect. Of course, this is interesting and realistic as no family is perfect. It does seem, however, that Aang grew up to be someone less optimistic and giving than he seemed as a child. He seemed to favor Tenzin, and it seems like there was almost a bit of a gendered dynamic in the family.
1 AANG: THIS RELATIONSHIP WAS PLANNED FROM THE START
This point is similar to the fact that these two are canon. While many fans saw the potential of a relationship between Katara and Zuko, the main creators of the series had planned for a Katara and Aang relationship. This is why this relationship builds somewhat over the series. Audiences see how important Katara is to Aang and the two share romantic moments throughout the series including kissing. This relationship has a lot more build-up.