Most hardcore fans of Serena Williams already know the former world No. 1 is a huge fan of Avatar: The Last Airbender, and now the rest of the world is getting to know her nerdy side too after starring in a new teaser video for the upcoming Netflix series.

The 23-time Grand Slam champion hit the tennis court in a new 30-second spot which aired on Sunday during the NBA All-Star Game, and was featured powering up into the series’ iconic “Avatar State”.

A live-action adaptation of the beloved Nickelodeon animated series of the same name, Avatar: The Last Airbender takes place in a world defined by four elements—water, earth, fire and air—which can each be controlled by “benders”. The Avatar is the only person with the ability to wield all four elements at the same time, and can also enter the “Avatar State”—a type of mystical power-up that brings the Avatar nearly unlimited power, as well as the show's signature glowing eyes.


Serena showed off her own version of the Avatar State in the promo, where she is seen hitting a practice serve as her eyes and face begin to glow. With the show’s signature soundtrack in the background, Serena powers up and leaps to hit a smoldering ace that reveals characters depicting the four elements.

“That? That’s the Avatar State,” Serena then tells a stunned young bystander, whose own eyes begin to glow in response.

A massive fan of the animated series that debuted in 2005 on Nickelodeon, Serena has never passed up a chance to be a part of the action over the years. In fact, she’s actually voiced a couple of characters in the series, including a prison guard named Ming in The Last Airbender, as well as a female sage in Avatar spin-off \The Legend of Korra. \

“They were like, do you want to do this? And I was like, Yeah! I’m obsessed with the show,” Serena told Netflix in a behind-the-scenes clip.

“I watched the show when it first came out ages ago. For me, I was just honestly excited to be a part of this.”


Serena, who even has her own page on the fan-run Avatar Wiki, had to be rigged up in a harness for the spot’s standout scene as she soared into the air and smashed the (fire)ball across the court.

“It’s so fun to fly,” Serena said. “I’m definitely an Airbender after all of this, but I guess I’m more like… I’m the Avatar! I can do it all.”

The live-action adaptation stars Gordon Cormier as Avatar Aang, along with Kiawentiio as Katara, Ian Ousley as Sokka and Dallas Liu as Prince Zuko. The series premieres February 22 on Netflix.

Check out more of Serena's delightful ATLA fandom in the Tweets below—including one featuring the former No. 1 in a debate over the fictional universe's lore with other fans online:


Serena even got her husband, Reddit co-founder Alexis Ohanian, into the series. Talk about impact!