Attack On Titan Episode 58: Recap & Review

Episode 58, Attack Titan

The Owl’s real name is Eren Kruger. Grisha question Eren on why he refused to transform sooner. As Eren collapses he confesses to “cutting off the fingers and turning thousands of subjects of Ymir into Titans.” He believed that this would help Eldia. He gives Grisha a mission to get the founding Titan’s power. He tells Grisha that he will “inherit” his Titan and the reason he can’t do it himself is that those “who inherit one of the Nine Titans dies thirteen years later.” This is called “Ymir’s curse,” meaning that Armin has thirteen years to live and Eren has less than eight.

Mikasa believes that this must be a lie, although she may be in doubt. Eren states that if a bearer dies without being eaten a baby will be born with the ability. Eren explains that all subjects of Ymir are connected by the Coordinate (Founding Titan). Grisha cowards in front of the new mission he’s expected to undertake. He’s feels too much guilt. Regardless, Eren is able to convince him to take up the mission. He reveals that each Titan has a name, and his Titan is called the Attack Titan. Levi and Hange arrive and release Eren and Mikasa. They are heading to meet Queen Historia.

Historia is reading the letter the Ymir wrote to her. In the letter Ymir suggest that she will be killed and that she wanted to marry Historia. When she touches the letter she sees what looks like Ymir’s entire life. The Scouts explain what happened at the Wall so the rest of the government are up to speed. Hange explains that while Eren has inherited the Founding Titan’s power he can’t use it because he’s not of royal blood. However, a royal descendant that inherits the Founding Titan wouldn’t be possessed by the King’s will preventing from acting against the world.

Eren realizes that he was able to use the power of the Founding Titan because he was touching Dina. He’s unsure what would happen to Historia if he revealed this as a possible reason. In the flashback, Eren tells Grisha he needs to “love” someone, otherwise “history will repeat itself.” He then says something strange. He tells Grisha if he ” wants to save Mikasa, Armin, and everyone else,” he must complete his mission. Grisha is unaware who he’s talking about. Eren seems to be unaware who’s memory he was tapping into. I’ll admit this part was so confusing or shocking that I though it might be a translation error.

We know that Grisha became a father figure to Mikasa after he parents death, did he assume that he had to protect her? What we also know is that memories can be past “along” the “path.” It was never stated that these memories could it only go from the past to the current Titan holder. What if it could go from the current to the past as well. Of course this is just a guess and it would be confusing if it worked that way. Regardless, the depth of storytelling and newly introduced mythos makes this series even more entertaining. The final episode will likely be a setup for the next season, but with Attack on Titan you just never know.

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Attack On Titan Episode 55 Recap & Review

Eren and Zeke meet

Episode 55, Midnight Sun

After last weeks action packed episode you would think that this one would get the blood pumping. It’s episodes like these that make Attack on Titan standout to me. The world of this series is dark and occasionally I forget how dire of an situation the scouts are in. This episode reminds us what’s at stake, humanity. I predicted the outcome of this episode in my previous review of episode 54. What I couldn’t predict is how we would get there. It was a heart wrenching conclusion.

Eren seems to accept that Armin has meet his death early in the episode. Zeke (The Beast Titan) arrives on the back of the Cart Titan, and recognizes Eren as the son of Grisha Jaeger. He claims that Eren “was brainwashed” by his father. Before he can elaborate he flees when Levi arrives. When he does he tells Eren that he will “save” him on day. My best hunch is that Zeke is related to both Eren and Grisha in some way. Levi lands and demands Eren give him his gear, then Armin gasp for air.

Armin eats Bertholdt

Meanwhile, Hange and the others try to no avail to interrogate Reiner. When Hange tries to cut the throat of Reiner, Jean tells her that because it’s “possible they might be able to steal his power.” Hange agrees and sends Mikasa to get the Titan injection. Of course when Mikasa arrives she sees Armin’s charred body. Eren quickly asks for the Titan injection to give Armin. Just as he does, Floch arrives with Erwin on his back. Erwin is still alive but barely, creating a conflict that was obvious but unexpected.

Erwin dies

Understandably, Mikasa and Eren are obviously on Armin’s “side,” whereas Levi and Floch are on Erwin’s. What follows is a tense exchange where both side argue which of the two have done more for humanity and which one would do more in the future. Erwin clearly has done more for humanity in part due to his age. This of course also work against him when taking about the future. Armin is much younger so he couldn’t have done more that Erwin, but he can do more in the future. Regardless, Armin is the one that’s saved. Armin in Titan form grabs Bertholdt and consumes him becoming the Colossal Titan, while Erwin dies.

It will be interesting to see how Armin handles his new power. He’s not a fighter like Eren stated, but then again you really can’t fight with the Colossal Titan the way you can with other Titan forms. Also, will there be any lingering animosity in the scouts or is everything fine now that Armin was saved. The scouts as always have lost a lot, but they gained a new intelligent titan, maybe the most intelligent.

Armin lives

Attack On Titan Episode 51 Recap & Review

Reiner moves his mind to his body

Episode 51, Thunder Spears

This episode was a bit of a slow burn. I liked that. While the scouts rest atop of the wall, the Beast Titan and the other titans wait outside the Shiganshina District. Reiner Braun begins to climb the wall behind the scouts. While he does so, Erwin deduces the motives of the Beast Titan. Erwin orders the scouts to avoid the Armor Titan. He concludes that the horses are a major target for the Beast Titan. If they can take away “the scouts only means of escape.” He orders the Dirk Squad and Marlene Squad join Klaus Squad to protect the horses.

Eren prepares to fight Reiner

He orders the Levi Squad and Hange Squad to defeat the Armored Titan, using the Thunder Spears. However, Erwin orders Levi to protect the horse and when possible take down the Beast Titan. When Reiner gets to the top of the wall, he contemplates his options. Eren transforms forcing Reiner to choose between killing the horses or capturing Eren, he goes with the later. Eren successfully baits Reiner into a fight. Once the fight begins Eren hardens his fingers and they fight in the town Eren grew up in.

Erwin remembers the fallen

As the scouts rush to kill the small Titans, Levi and Erwin notes that the scouts have gotten weaker. Meanwhile, Eren takes the lead in battle against Reiner. We get a detailed explanation from Hange of what the new weapon the, Thunder Spear. Reiner is thrown off by Eren leaving him exposed. Hange and Mikasa fly towards Reiner and use the new spears on his eyes. They exploded, blinding him. The rest of the Levi and Hange squads fire the spears into his back, destroying the armor around his nape. His neck now exposed the scout send multiple spears into his neck and it explodes.

The scouts descend on Reiner

If the scouts are able to create and use new weapons they could gain an advantage in the war against the titans. Most titans are not that intelligent so it would be necessary to waste these weapons on them. However, with special titans like the Armor or Colossus they could benefit from more sophisticated weapons. I’ve mentioned this before, but I think Erwin is going to die here. His backstory only confirmed this. Furthermore, Armin is perfect to replace his mind and Levi is a better fighter at this point.

Does Reiner meet his end?

The biggest question right now is, did Reiner die? It would be implausible if he didn’t. The weapon was designed to kill him and he was largely defenseless against it, plus Eren is still around. There’s now way he can survived right? He did manage to survive the attack from Levi by transferring his mind to his body. Will he get lucky again?

Attack on Titan Season 3 Episode 9 Review: Ruler of the Walls

The massive titan of Rod Reiss continues to drag itself toward Orvud District. Erwin’s plan becomes more clear as Hange explains why it would be a bad idea to evacuate the citizens. Because Rod is an abnormal Titan he would be drawn to a larger crowd of people. If they evacuate it simply will change direction, potentially destroying the wall itself and killing more people.

Erwin acknowledges that the scouts are duty bound to protect the citizens and that even though they will use them as bait, they have developed a plan to save them if needed. The scouts will have the citizen participate in a “emergency evacuation drill.” They begin in the morning, but the citizens aren’t interested. They complain and question the authority of the scouts. Considering their attitude I can only conclude that these people haven’t been exposed to the Titans much.

Regardless, they quiet down as they notice the smoke coming from Rod’s Titan form. Cartsen orders the scouts to shoot Rod with cannon’s from a top of Wall Sina. This goes as well as I expected, which is to say not very well. Erwin has a seemingly ridiculous plan that of course is going to work. As Titan battles tend to go this one wasn’t the most action packed, but it made up for it by being the most disgusting. Rod having been crawling with half his face buried in the ground and well as his stomach, no longer has either.

His entrails fall out on top of Wall Sina. Finally, the citizens see the Titan and begin to flee. From this point the main scouts take over. After blowing up gunpowder near the Titans hands, it falls over. Eren carrying barrels of gunpowder, literally throws it into the Titans face. The heat causes them to blow up, resulting in an chain reaction that destroys the top half of Rod. Piece’s of the Titan fly off and Erwin order’s the Scout’s to cut up the chunks. The Scouts do so with Historia finally delivering the death blow to her father.

We finally see the results of what happened to Kenny and his squad. He appears to be the only survivor and is fatally wounded. Levi and another soldier find him sitting against a tree. As Levi noted his likely fate is death, Kenny shows him a syringe. There’s no way that this series will have another human made Titan so close to Rod. I think Kenny dies before he can use it or he gives it to Levi to use. The action in this episode was simple and mostly secondary. This episode was largely about the character growth of Historia and Eren.

Eren realizes that he was too arrogant. He seems to come to terms with the fact that despite his Titan abilities he’s not the “main character.” Eren of course remains very important to the series but it feels like he’s at peace with his place in the Scouts (and hopefully the series). I still think Historia’s transformation was too quick and not earned like Eren’s, but it will be good to see them accept themselves. With Historia now Queen, the scouts have a powerful ally, while killing off almost all of their non Titan enemies. A perfect time to head to the basement.

Attack on Titan Episode 8 Review: Outside the Walls of Orvud District

Rod beings transforming into a Titan that is twice the size of the Colossal Titan. While transforming Rod destroys the cavern. In order to survive they turn to Eren. As typical of him, Eren has been begging to be “eaten.” He continues to be a “crybaby,” calling himself “useless.” Eren continues to apologize, but Jean does accept it stating that “that Eren has never accomplished anything by himself.” Conny reminds him that “collectively they have been through worse.”

Finally, Eren decides to grab a bottle labeled “armor” and breaks it in his teeth. He transforms and pillars of crystal beings to reinforce the ceiling of the cavern. The squad hides underneath Eren. The Anti-Personnel Squad is harmed however. Caven and another solider are crushed by debris form the cavern ceiling. Unsurprisingly, Hange survives, as Armin and Moblit escape with her Erwin arrives with the scouts.

Meanwhile, Eren is freed from his crystallized Titan and has apparently gained the ability to “harden,” his skin. Levi points out that this is can be used to rebuild the Wall Maria. Interestingly, Rod’s Reiss Titan is strange. It’s large and seems to have a torso too long to stand, along with arms and legs too weak to lift him. Instead of walking upright it crawls and burns everything in it’s wake. According to the Scouts they believe that Rod is an Abnormal Titan.

Historia is asked by Hange if she’s okay with her father being killed. Considering the fact that a Titan of that size must be killed. If find the attachment between Historia and Rod to be weak. It’s really unconvincing to me that she would sincerely care about him. However, she accepts that her father must die.

This episode wasn’t really as entertaining or interesting as the previous ones. That’s no real issue, all episodes don’t need to be spectacular. Mostly the episode felt slow and there wasn’t anything new revealed. Regardless, I’m curious why Erwin won’t evacuate the civilians, the next episode is going to be very interesting.

Attack on Titan Episode 7 Review: Wish

Rod Reiss gives Historia hope that she can “meet” her sister. He claims that she’s not “entirely dead” he takes out a syringe that Eren quickly recognizes and begins to panic. Meanwhile, the scouts begin their assault on Chapel and the Anti-Personnel Control Squad. The doors open, then the scouts roll barrels of gunpowder down the stairs. Levi and the other enter. Sasha uses her bow and arrow skills to shoot the barrels with fire arrows.

Using signal flares, they are able to create a smokescreen. Levi quickly counts the numbers of Anti-Personnel Squad-members (35). Armin informs the others of the weakness of their Anti-Personnel ODM because it “requires that they fire in the same direction they intend to shoot their anchors, so they are unable to attack someone directly behind them.” Jean and Conny both get their first human kills, signalling a major change in the series as particularly Jean was apprehensive to do so.

Unsurprisingly, Mikasa and Levi overwhelm the Control Squad, taking out several of them each. Kenny attacks Levi, who then manages to wound Kenny in the stomach. Kenny flees. Hange approaches Caven. She manages to shoot Hange in the shoulder with her ODM gear piercing Hange’s shoulder. She then throws Hange against one of the crystal pillars. While, Attack on Titan is know for killing off main characters, I don’t think THIS is will be the moment that Hange will die. Caven takes this moment to flee with her squad.

We finally get to see what happened in the past. Basically, a titan created the cavern, the 3 walls and altered peoples minds. When Frieda was 15 she ate her uncle and inherited the Founding Titan and memories of the of the old world. This process has been repeated over and over in the Reiss Family. He claims that Grisha stole this power from Frieda and “gave” it to Eren, who lacks the Reiss blood and cannot make it work properly.

Kenny is upset once he here’s this. Disappointed that he cannot become a titan and eat Eren, he pulls his gun on Rod. Up until this point Historia was buying what Rod was telling her, but Kenny throws a wrench into it. He asks Historia “if she remembers everything Rod has done to her,” and that “the only thing Rod cares about is her blood because he does not want to become a Titan himself.”

If it’s not obvious, Rod is clearly a coward. He positions himself as some sort of steward of his families control over the titan power. Considering how quickly he goes to get his Historia after his families massacre is questionable. Regardless, Rod encourages Historia to inject the syringe and become a titan and eat Eren.

She’s hesitant and realizes that Eren hasn’t transformed yet. She asks him why and Eren begins to cry and explains that “they would not be in this position if his father had not come here five years ago.” He recalls all the “costs” that Frieda’s death resulted in. Eren has his moments in this series and sometimes if find his emotional complexity endearing. However, he can be needless self-deprecating and it can become annoying.

Historia changes her mind as she remembers Ymir. She throws the syringe to the ground and begins to free Eren as he begs her to eat him to stop everyone’s suffering. She pulls out the first set of chains as she tells him that “that she wants nothing to do with exterminating the Titans. Let humanity get wiped out.” Rod begins to crawl his way toward the puddle and licks it, turning himself into a Titan.

I’m glad to see Historia come to he senses. I predict that Eren should transform to save himself from Rod, but in the state that he’s in maybe not. I’m assume of course that Rod would be a mindless Titan, which could mean that he attacks Kenny and the control squad as well. Being an “ordinary” titan should make him easy to kill anyway.

 

Attack on Titan Episode 6 Review: Sin

In the underground chapel built by the Reiss family, Historia reveals to Eren that “everything is all right,” and that her father is “an ally of humanity.” An ally despite the issues he caused for the Scouts, the murder of Pastor Nick and Dimo Reeves. I like Historia but she is rather naive to believe that he father is an ally of anyone but himself. Considering her childhood I think that she really wants to believe that her father is sincere so that she can have a family. Regardless, Rod decides that he will explain it everything to Eren. Having himself and Historia place their hands on Eren triggers memories from Grisha Yeager (Eren’s father). These memories depict Grisha’s “sin.”

Historia recovers some of her memories after touching Eren and realizes that she wasn’t alone as a child, but a dark haired young woman helped her and taught her to read. Rod tells her that woman was his daughter Frieda and she was Historia’s half-sister. Grisha’s sin was the killing of Frieda Reiss. He reveals that Grisha killed Rod’s entire family after he ate her. Gaining the Power of the Titans from Frieda. Grisha has been a mysterious figure in Attack on Titan. It’s stunning how monstrous he turns out to be or was he. Was the Reiss family really for humanity or for their own power? I’m betting their own power. We also learn how Eren received his powers, he ate his father. Knowing Eren this truth is going to weigh on him for some time even if it was an accident. However, considering his fathers knowledge of titans, I get the suspicion that he wanted Eren to eat him.

Kenny the Ripper interrupts them, telling them of the coup. Kenny seems to be subservient towards Rod, whom he calls King. Rod orders him to prepare for the Scouts to arrive. Meanwhile, we see how Zachary plans to treat the nobles, torture them. Basically he strips one naked and feeds him from the “bottom up.” It’s all quiet grotesque but I have no sympathy for the noble anyway, so I don’t care. It also turns out that Erwin’s father was right, the Royal family has the ability to erase memories. Of course certain bloodlines are immune to it’s effects. The nobles are telling all these secrets because they expect that no one will remember anyway.

The scouts prepare to get Eren and Historia. Armin, Mikasa and the others contemplate what their plan should be. Kenny is considered by Levi to be their biggest obstacle. He states that it would be smart for them to consider Kenny the “enemy version of him,” but “deadlier.” We finally get more clarification on Levi and Mikasa relationship with Kenny. Mikasa reveals that her dad did tell her that the Ackermann family had been persecuted. Levi asks her about a moment when she felt a “hidden power,” she says that she had. Levi states that both himself and Kenny felt it as well. In a flashback from Kenny we see that the Ackermann family use to be the warriors that protected the King.

Kenny’s grandfather tells him that the King does hate them, but he can’t control them. The Ackermann family and the Oriental Clan are immune to the King memory erasing power. This all of course makes sense. Mikasa, Levi and Kenny are clearly among the best warriors in the series, the fact that they are also immune to the King’s power does add some comfort. I be interested in seeing if Kenny and Mikasa face off. The scouts arrive at the chapel and prepare for a fight, meanwhile, the Military police are already prepared to greet them. The series has scaled back on the action in favor of more world building, it appears that the next episode will see Attack on Titan return to that action. Which is great, I was starting to miss it.

Attack on Titan Season 3, Episode 2 Review: Pain

This episode steps up in it’s intensity. Eren and Historia are quickly tranquilized as Levi gives chance. Levi is quickly attacked by Military Police, lead by Kenny. The chase scene is spectacular, Levi’s skill isn’t surprising but still exciting to witness. Watching Levi and Kenny match wits, Levi outsmarts Kenny. Managing to shoot him with shotgun, although Kenny seem unharmed. Kenny is a odd character, his mannerism are rather relaxed he seemed unfazed by being shot.

Meanwhile, the other scouts hear the commotion. Mikasa finally tells them what Levi told her, “from now on, we’ll be fighting humans, too, and not just Titans.” The shift in dynamic from killing Titans to killing people was always going to be a dramatic shift in the series. It isn’t surprising that many of the characters are apprehensive regarding killing humans. It’s much easier to kill Titans not so much in from a technical standpoint, but from a mental.

Levi tells them that they “can’t hesitate,” when it come time to kill. Of course Jean and Armin struggle with this. After capturing the wagon, Jean does indeed hesitate, but so does the woman aiming her gun at him, it’s Armin that kills her saving him. Despite, Armin’s efforts, the Military police succeed in capturing Eren and Historia. Armin has a profoundly negative physical, emotional and mental reaction. He starts to cry, throw up and lose his appetite.

 

He concludes that “the person he killed must have been a nice person and more human than he is.” Levi tells him to “embrace the new him,” that Armin is the reason that Jean is still alive. This seems to be mild comforting to him. Jean questions the morality of “hurting people,” Levi states that he’s not certain of the morals of his orders. The complexity of characters, their lives and decisions are part of what makes this series so enthralling.

Is it weird that I enjoyed the torture scenes? Probably. The scouts are cleaver in how they manipulate their captives, when physical pain doesn’t work they use the other captive to demoralize the other. This episode has introduced some dread to this season. Armin will clearly struggle with his new experiences.

We find out that Historia is the “true royal successor,” and she with Eren are with Rob Reiss. While Levi was successful at besting Kenny, his team did fail to rescue Eren. I mentioned this before, but it is surprising and refreshing to see that Eren has taken a backseat to other characters. Even-though it is becoming a troupe that Eren gets kidnap so often.

Attack on Titan Season 3 Episode 1 Review: Smoke Signal

Attack on Titan finally returns, this time it looks like titans will not be the only threat to the scouts. This episode increases the stakes and enlarges the world of AOT. Levi takes the lead, as our primary protagonists become members of Levi’s squad. The protection of Eren and Historia is now paramount. The first episode shifts focuses from Eren, to larger threats. Eren and the others hide out in a cabin as they recover from injuries from the battle with the titans.

Eren has become an important part of a plan to “rebuilding the damaged walls,” with Hange (one of my favorite characters) in charge of the experiments. Eren’s titan form in weirdly short and emaciated. When pulling Eren out of his titan form part of his face is torn off, leaving part of his skull expose. This is dark humor played for laughs that Hange often creates in this series, of course Eren isn’t in danger and will heal.

In Trost, Pastor Nick is murdered. Having given the scouts information, he’s tortured, but doesn’t give up any information. However, it’s clear that Levi’s squad is a target. With the military police aiming for the scouts, it starts to become clear that the government is up to something. They have frozen the activity of scouts outside the walls, arrested Erwin and have demanded Eren and Historia be turned over. The government has always been portrayed as corrupted, but now they’re murdering innocent people.

Hange heads off to save Erwin, while, Levi takes off with her remaining scouts. Levi and the others head into Trost with a plan. Eren and Historia are abducted, but it turns out that they are impostors. Armin and Jean have replaced Historia and Eren respectively. Mikasa and the others quickly rescue them, as Levi heads to meet with Eren. Before he does he give Mikasa a message to tell the other, it’s not made clear what he says though.

Finally, as the carriage carrying Eren and Historia is stalled, Levi is unsettled. He asks Nifa if she’s heard of “Kenny the Ripper, a mass murderer who slit the throats of a hundred MPs in the capital.” Levi says that he lived with him as a child. Kenny sneaks up on then killing Nifa, his many followers prepare to attack as does Levi. I like the shift from Eren and Titan focuses, to focusing on a corrupted government and large conspiracy. While this episode starts off slowly and end before the action, I thought the shift was needed to set up the new threats. This episode provided a great start and with 23 episodes remaining I can’t wait.

Shingeki no Kyojin: Episode 37

The Smiling titan

The final episode of the second season of Shingeki no Kyojin (Attack on Titan), entitled Scream, begins when the last episode ended. As Reiner throws titans at the scouts, they get up and begin to attack them. Ymir rescues commander Erwin from a titan, while cursing him for ruining her plan.The smiling titan attacks Eren and Mikasa, but Hannes intervenes. How he manages to physically take a hit from the titan and stand tall is beyond me, but he does.

He quickly engages the titan, hoping to get revenge for Eren’s mother. Hannes holds his own against the smiling titan, managing to cut the achilles of the titan, however, its at this moment that he’s captured . I’ve been predicting that Hannes was likely going to die, but the manner of his death was striking. His death is almost shot for shot the same as when Eren’s mother was eaten.

Eren’s Scream

Witnessing Hannes death, Eren becomes distraught, as he foolishly bites chunks of his own hand, attempting to transform into his titan form. Eren tearfully decries how nothing has “changed,” he yells at himself, calling himself “useless as ever.” Mikasa tells him that “it’s untrue,” she tells him that “he’s always been at her side.” She talks about how he wrapped the scarf around her and thanks him. Eren faces off against the smiling titan, letting out a scream. However, he doesn’t manage to transform but all the titans refocus their attention towards eating the smiling titan. Ymir and Reiner confirm that this is a power called the “Coordinate.”

Ymir’s decision

Since revealing her titan status, Ymir has been questioning where she belongs and what to do regarding Historia. She finally makes her decision that now that Eren is revealed to be the coordinate, there’s hope for Historia within the walls. Watching as Reiner and Bertholdt are besieged by titans, she chooses to save them. When Reiner and Bertholdt ask why she helped them, she admits that she owes them for killing their friend. At this point it seems that Ymir’s purpose in the series is over, and it’s unclear that Bertholdt and Reiner will return.

Overall, the series remains a one of the top anime of all time. The series manages to balances emotional intensity, action and good plot development. This season did focus on some of the characters, mainly Ymir, Reiner, Bertholdt and Erwin. However, Levi took a major backseat, I hope he’ll return to the forefront in the following season. The season ended with a mild cliffhanger, introducing a new character. Luckily, we would only have to wait a year to get the next season.