Well we only saw Team Avatar on a regular basis in the first series, so there wasn't much to go. I just thought their eye-color was by chance. With LoK we have more Bender diversity, and a better chance to notice.
On the original series there was pretty much no intermarriage. Water tribe was not just a different nation from fire nation and earth kingdom. They were pretty much different races. So its completely reasonable that benders or even non-benders from each would be more likely to share an eye color within the group. With the mixing of the different peoples in Republic City, though, it's possible that could change.
I suppose that could be right, Sokka's eyes are blue and he's not a bender, but I still feel that Bending and eye-color are connected, on some level. It could another of my crackpot theories, but I won't be letting go of it so soon.
EDIT: If Asami is a Non-Bender, then I shall repeal this eye-color theory of mine. And if this is real.... I don't even know...
What color would non bender's eyes be though. They at least have to have some color, seems like it'd be much more variable than anywhere else under the assumption that it's often benders/non-benders of a similar type that breed. Therefore the genetics of non-benders would be more diverse since they're present everywhere and more likely to have more diverse gene pool.
Your logic is flawed, because non-benders can have bending children and vice-versa, and it's not like the child's genes are completely different from their parents' genes just because one can bend and one can't. Eye color, hair color, skin color, whatever, is still going to be similar to the parents, regardless of bending.
Eh. Waterbenders are confined to north and south poles and likely to breed within those groups. Leading to the prevalence of similar traits. Same for firebenders, and up until genocide air benders. Earthbenders seem to be more spread out and those a little more diverse, but genetic traits like air and hair color are probably gonna settle into a norm. Like most Chinese people having black hair.
I guess it's hard to tell without much more information. Can two non-benders have a fire bender? Can a water and a fire bender have an earth bender? Can two fire nation non-benders have an earth bender, or are they confined to having only fire benders?
From everything we've seen it seems like bending elements come from parentage, at least drawing from Aang and Kataara's kids. Which means other traits from those parents like hair/eye color are also likely going to be similar, and if most breeding occurs within nation boundaries which is the assumption I was working under I feel my conclusions to be correct. More cross breeding has appeared to happen after the end of the 100 year war though.
So if most breeding occurs within the individual nations, similar physical traits and bending types are going to occur together.
We're in a genetics unit in bio currently and learning about dominant and recessive alleles, which essentially determine what traits an organism has. Each parent has two, one being dominant, one being recessive, per trait, and contributes only one of them at random to their offspring. For example, if in a family nonbending is dominant or T, and bending is recessive or t, a mother could be Tt and a father could be Tt. In this case both have the dominant non-bending gene, thereby supressing the bending gene. But if they have children the children could be TT, Tt, Tt, or tt. This means that they have a 1/4th chance of having a bending child, who would have the tt type, since there is no dominant non-bending gene to suppress it. . This is a much more simplified version of the actual science, but it's something.
I know, as I said I super simplified it. There's also codominant alleles that have equal dominance and thus both show, and other types that are only partially dominant, etc. The twins must have been fraternal, or bending isn't genetic then. Identical twins have identical DNA, so they should both have been benders or non-benders.
There were only a few characteristics that distinguished the brother from each other, the most notable was the fact that Poi was an earthbender while Ping was not, proving that bending abilities are not solely defined by genetics.
I'm aware of the science. Trust me. Just saying as a broad generalization, IF bending is tied to descent from the region that type of bending is from, you are likely to have similar traits to that group of people.
For example if air bending is tied to Northern Europe, you're probably going to be white and blonde haired. Then again I know a black guy from Norway. BUT, a majority of people from Northern Europe are probably going to be white and blonde haired.
This is a generalization. If airbenders have to be descended from the air nomad line, whether their parents are bending or non-bending descendents, they're more than likely (NOT WILL BE, more than likely) going to be white.
Of course, we had reason to wonder back into the first series if bending didn't have more to it than just genetics. Because every air nomad was an airbender, and if Tenzin's kids are any indication, that may continue to be the case. You could argue, I guess that airbending was just an extremely dominant gene or something, but Aang's other kids argue against that. There could be spiritual or even mystical components to who bends what that we know nothing about. Just the fact that there is an Avatar certainly suggests that there's more to it than we can science out.
Been studying anatomy and physiology all day, then I come here and see a discussion about genetics...at first I thought I was hallucinating, then I finally realized what you all were talking about. Now I'm just lost again... all I'm going to say is Tenzin's kids better be fruitful and multiply if airbenders are going to not be extinct.
I guess that all bending, whatever element, is determined by chi and chi flow. I think that's the safest bet, but then what of the correlation with eye-color? Is eye-color based on genetics of a certain regional populace with a distinct chi flow due to interference by the spirits, or is it simply genetics, or simply chi, or just spirits? Damn You Bryke! Why You No Go Further Into Detail About The Effect Of Chi And/Or Genetics On The Eye-Color Of Certain People And Their Ability To Either Bend Or Not?
I tried, all that would be unreadable on a "Y U No" picture.
Nope, people who are going to go so deep as to over analyse the choice of eye color. You're turning into a high school English teacher. Explain what the author meant when he said that the wall was blue. Sometimes the wall is just blue.
Yes, well scissors and theories aside, this new series had better be more than one season, or the Book One thing is really gonna irritate me. I understand that's it a new Avatar series and all, but it's mostly going to irritate me because of how it will mess up my DVD collection. Book 1,2,3,1? No sir. Hell the fact that the Nick DVD logo isn't on book three, thus causing the symbols of the nations to be level then stair step, still irritates me. But I digress. I don't know who they would do it, but for the sake of my DVD collection they'd best add a season or two. And what's the point of numbering the books and putting the element that is being learned if you're going to break the set on the final element?
In reply to GR33NMaN, #8458: Imo, bending and ethnic background are related and, as a result, eye colour. For the most part, each nation had people with specific eye colours (as data said) with a few exceptions being Ty-Lee (grey, fire nation), Suki(blue, earth kingdom) and this kid (who may or may not be a bender). However, there are plenty of non-benders with coloured eyes, most in their respective countries; for example Mai has amber eyes, actually most of the royalty have pronounceably more golden eyes which could be taken as a sign of their genetic-heritage.
When it comes to Asami and Hiroshi Sato: Hiroshi was the descendant of Fire Nation colonials, his eyes are golden amber... Asami's mother could be another multi-cultural heritages based on eye colour (ignoring bending) because I think she isn't
In reply to TBSWK, #8466: Moving past Mendelian genetics, there many traits (such as eye colour) that are far more complex relying on multiple alleles, which brings in things like recombination frequency (related to distance on a single chromosome, eye colour is about 3 locations if memory serves?) This, of course, not taking into account co-dominance, incomplete dominance, etc... AND not taking into account that not all inherited genes are expressed, eg. real life identical twins sometimes express different genes despite the same genetics...
In short... Once we bring in genetics, it gets complicated quickly... Faster when we bring in platypus bears and spirit pandas.