Campaign of the Month: November 2011
Avatar: Conquest of the Imperial Order
Foggy Swamp Tribe
oggy Swamp Tribe
The Foggy Swamp Tribe is one of the three Water Tribes in the Avatar World. It is notable in that they do not live at one of the Poles; they are instead located in the Foggy Swamp.
History and Culture
The Foggy Swamp Tribe is a Waterbending settlement located in a mystical swamp known as the Foggy Swamp. The swamp itself actually consists, in large part, of a single, massive tree, at least several hundred feet tall, whose roots and tree limbs have spread out for miles to form the foundation of the swamp. Though the Foggy Swamp Tribe Waterbenders share the skill of Waterbending, they are completely unknown to their polar cousins and vice versa. Though technologically unsophisticated, the tribe is consisted of powerful Waterbenders. These benders have specialized their skill to adapt to the swamp environment, such as by using a rigid bending motion to propel river crafts at very high speeds. Members of the tribe have also discovered how to manipulate plants by controlling the water within them. Their diet consists of small game and giant insects, and they keep Catgators as pets. The Foggy Swamp Tribe is also very in tune to their natural surroundings and have a keen understanding of the workings of the natural world. They follow the belief that all life is connected and is reliant on each other, a philosophy which they teach Aang, who quickly accepts the concept. Though it is unknown whether the tribe possesses a complex political system, Huu appears to hold some authority over the other members of the tribe. He may be their chief, if they have such a position at all.
The Foggy Swamp Tribe’s ancestry originates from the Southern Water Tribe, but they have become far removed. Neither their manner of speaking, building, fighting, cooking or any other societal tradition indicates a direct link with their polar counterpart. For example, the people of the Foggy Swamp Tribe are light-skinned like Earth Land inhabitants, not dark-skinned like Water Tribesmen. Their manner of speech is also wildly different (in the English version of the show, they imitate the dialect of Mississippi Delta culture). Like the Southern Water Tribe, the Foggy Swamp Tribe promotes further gender equality than the Northern Water Tribe, which has a more paternalistic societal structure.
Though they wear green as opposed to blue, it could be pointed out that the water in their area is green and they are thus consistent with the other cultures of the Avatar world in using their element as a primary color motif. The male tribe members wear a giant leaf hat, loin-cloths, arm bands, and wrappings around their shins and fore-arms, while the women wear longer skirts and bands around their chest. The tribe members do not wear shoes or sandals. They also appear to use the plants around them for clothing and for camoflauge as opposed to the hides or skins of the native fauna. Like their Southern and Northern cousins, their hair is generally darker shades of brown and black, but their eyes are green instead of blue, like Earthbenders.
The Foggy Swamp Tribe’s Waterbenders have a different style of bending from their polar cousins. While the Northern and Southern benders flow with the water, the Foggy Swamp Tribe’s style seems more rigid and straight, possibly reflecting the stagnant nature of swamp water. This can especially be seen when they are propelling their boats using a much more straight-backed style than when Northern Waterbenders move their gondolas. Due to the diversity and abundancy of fauna in the swamp, the technique, Plantbending, is often utilized by the Waterbenders of Foggy Swamp Tribe.
Swamp Skiffs are small, canoe-like crafts that the tribesmen use to travel around the swamp. They are propelled through the use of Waterbending, and are guided by long poles that divert the vessels around obstacles present in the swamp’s waterways. Swamp folk use these boats to hunt, fish and travel around their watery environment.
The village itself resembles the Southern Water Tribe in small ways. It is a relatively small village made up of huts, which are raised up by medium-length wooden poles that are meant to protect the huts from floods.