Attack on Titan Season 4 Episode 20, ends with a major reveal. Zeke takes Eren through the memories of their father, Grisha Jaeger. Zeke has one goal to show Eren how his father’s ideology is manipulating him. Zeke is clearly bitter for being “abandoned,” accusing Grisha of forgetting he “had a first son.” Zeke tells Eren that their father of using his position as a doctor to “cozy up to those in power,” so he can “hunt down the king,” and “steal the Founding Titan.” If Grisha fails his wife and son (Eren) would suffer as well. It’s Zeke not Eren that is shocked early in this episode. Eren and Zeke learn that Grisha found the King’s hideout years before they expected. Grisha appears to have stopped the pursuit of the King at this point. Zeke assumed that Grisha never loved any of his children, but he realizes that he did love Eren.
After travelling through several more memories, Eren tells Zeke that the reason he betrayed him wasn’t because Grisha manipulated. He’s always destroyed those that tired to “steal his freedom.” We also learn that Eren wanted to join the Survey Corps since childhood. Eren doesn’t want to remain ignorant of the outside world. His father is terrified at the revelation. He goes to beg the royal family to stop the Titans and save his wife, daughter, and son. Eren begins to rage in the background as Grisha explains the significance of the Attack Titan, to “defy self-righteous kings.” Furthermore, Grisha claims that the Attack Titan “allows its holder to glimpse the memories of its future inheritors.”
The past can’t be changed
Grisha removes a scalpel from his jacket and prepares to eliminate the royal line. However, he can’t bring himself to do it. Grisha is a doctor. He can’t bring himself to take lives especially children. While he hesitates, the royal family beg their sister Frieda to kill Grisha. Eren tells his father to stand up and remember what he’s fighting for. To avenge his sister, comrades, Dina, and, Kruger. It turns out Grisha killed the Reiss family on the orders of Eren. With the Attack Titan’s ability to see the future, Grisha tells Zeke his dreams are dead. He’s seen the future, Eren wins, and it’s horrible. He tells Zeke, he have to “stop Eren.” Suddenly, Zeke returns to the Paths, with Eren looking down on him.
I will admit, I find the fact Eren is responsible for everything to be confusing. Time travel always has the potential to confuse. Eren is given more agency that everyone else and turns out to be the manipulator of events. It’s farfetched. Attack on Titan also rewrites it’s own story. I’m not sure how I feel about it. Regardless, I’m excited to see how this series ends. Eren violent behavior is getting worst. I guess he’s still the “good” guy, but I’m not sure what that even means in this series.