Let’s be honest: Sokka was the Ma-Ti of the Avatar the Last Airbender universe. Without any bending powers, he was just a kid with a boomerang and some sub-par one liners. But then, he got a space sword.
During his time under Fire Nation sword-master Piandao, Sokka forged a sword out of a fallen meteorite, giving him an instant cred boost, and the power to help his friends in battle. As it turns out, the meteorite sword is real, and it’s sitting in Japan’s tallest building.
Introducing: “The Sword of Heaven,” a katana forged from a four-billion-year old meteor. (Of course, Sokka’s sword was a Jian, a Chinese straight sword, but we’re going to let that slide. Because, space sword.)
The katana, which sits on display at the base of the Tokyo Skytree, was made by Japan’s foremost sword smith, Yoshindo Yoshiwara, from a piece of the Gibeon meteorite, an iron space-rock found near the town of Gibeon, Namibia in 1838. “I never compromise [my craft],” explains Yoshiwara. “It is easy to make a compromise. But we hold our prides and devotes our lives into creating swords.”
You might notice that the polished katana isn’t the same color as the meteorite. This all has to do with what happens to a meteor when it hits Earth’s atmosphere. While soaring through space, the original meteor would have appeared that same bright, reflective silver, but extreme heat causes elements in the outer-most layer to melt and fuse together, resulting in regmaglypts, those dark “thumb prints” you can see in the photo.
This isn’t the first time a Legend of Korra-worthy blade has been forged: nerd-tastic metalsmith extraordinaire Tony Swatton created an exact replica of the piece in 2013.