I was wondering: if Azula inherited her kick-ass Fire-bending skillz from her maternal great-grandfather, Avatar Roku and her political genius from her father’s line, doesn’t that mean that Ursa was also have been a Firebending prodigy as well?* Or, at the very least, Ursa was (is actually as she is still alive) a powerful Firebender?
Ever since I watched Zuko Alone, I’ve been of the opinion that Ursa killed Azulon to save her son’s life, since Ozzai would have had no compunction killing his own son. For a long time, I thought she took him by surprise – poison, a stab in the back, etc. But after the ‘Avatar and the Firelord’ and ‘The Day of Black Son II’, it may be that she just bested him at Firebending.
So I’m guessing that Ursa might just be the person to take Azula down in the finale. So far it’s been leading up to a Zuko vs. Azula showdown (to parallel Aang vs. Ozzai’s) but I think that in the end, Zuko’s compassion to be the (near-)death of him. Like he did both times he dueled with Zhao, he’ll offer her mercy and turn his back on her too quickly. She will then attack and seriously injure him then Ursa will step in, and show that those badass Firebending skillz didn’t come from Ozzai’s side of the family.
I like the idea that her mother might just be the one person that Azula genuinely fears. Mother vs. Daughter duels to the death aren’t very common in modern fairy tales. It would be a very pleasant change.
(*Of course, all this hangs on the assumption that Bending skills are hereditary to some extent. According to the creators, this is not 100% the case, as spiritual randomness also plays a role. However, they didn’t completely discount genes/DNA so I think it’s safe to assume, for the sake of this argument, that it is possible for powerful bending abilities to run in a family.)
P.S. I need an Ursa icon!