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Attack on Titan Season 4, Episode 26: Traitor

In Attack on Titan Season 4 Episode 26: Traitor, the Alliance is handed their first test as the Jaegerist take over the port and kidnap the Azumabito family. The situation is delicate as they need the flying boat to get to Eren. Hange is afraid that the Jaegerists will destroy the boat upon learning that the alliance is present. Annie Leonhart argues they need to “take out all their enemies simultaneously in order to avoid the destruction of the flying boat.” However, Mikasa Ackermann points out they need to avoid endangering the Azumabito family. The Scouts want to hold off the Jaegerists, while rescuing the Azumabito family without killing any of the Jaegerists. Annie and Pieck don’t think a plan like that is possible.

Annie concludes that it’s “too much” to ask of the Scouts. Reiner suggests they remain behind, however, Hange returns to tell them must fight. The Wall Titans have likely reached Marley already, they need to move fast. Armin and Conny arrive outside of the port building on horseback. They claim to be chasing the Cart and Armored Titan’s. They need the Azumabito family to ready the flying boats so they can give chase. When the move closer they’re stopped by Daz and the interestingly named Samuel Linke-Jackson. They confront Armin with rumors of the alliance. The flying boat is armed with explosives and before they can be removed, Floch becomes suspicious.

Conny hard lessons

If they were in a hurry, why use horses instead of a faster means of travel? He prepares to shoot the engineers. In the commotion, Mikasa crashes through the window. Floch flees from the room ordering the killing of Mikasa, Armin, and Conny. Mikasa rushes the Hizuru engineers and Kiyomi into the basement. At the dock, Armin and Conny come into violent conflict with Daz and Samuel. Daz tries to reconnect the detonator and blow up the flying boat. Samuel shoots Armin. As Reiner and Annie transform into their Titan forms, Conny is forced to kill Samuel and Daz.

If anything can bring the alliance together it’s fighting together. Sharing a common foe can reinforce a sense of shared purpose and strengthen the weak bonds between the two sides. I wasn’t really buying the “friendship” between the Scouts and the Jaegerists. It’s convincing regarding a potential conflict with Eren but I didn’t even remember Samuel or Daz. Regardless, killing them especially after his reluctance will endear Conny to the Marleyans. Conny specifically seems to be learning hard lessons in these recent episodes. I wonder how he’ll deal with killing his friends and leaving his mother to be a Titan.

Anime

Attack on Titan Season 4, Episode 24: Pride

Attack on Titan Season 4 Episode 24, “Pride” opens with Hange Zoe treating a severely injured Levi Ackermann. She concludes that the only reason he’s survives is due to “being an Ackermann.” Hange wonders if they might end up imprisoned. When Eren sends his message, Levi awakens. Hange explains the situation to Levi, who’s still reeling from his failure to defeat Zeke Jaeger. At the end of the last episode Levi and Hange encountered Theo Magath and Pieck Finger. Their both searching for Zeke. Hange assumes Eren has him to make use of his “royal blood.” Conny Springer continues to manipulate Falco Grice as they camp in the woods. As I predicted, Conny is starting to feel guilty for deceiving Falco, who trusts him.

It all falls apart when Falco remembers Conny from when Gabi Braun murdered Sasha Braus. Conny reveals his mother, still trapped in the house for what’s likely been years now. He tries to trick Falco into getting close to his mother by suggesting they “clean her teeth.” It’s all so awkward. Suddenly, Gabi and Armin Arlelt appear and warn Falco. Desperate, Conny takes him hostage, holding a blade to Falco’s throat. Armin decides to risk his life by climbing on the a beam and preparing to feed himself to the Titan’s mouth. Conny drops Falco and saves Armin. When Conny asks Armin “what his backup plan would have been” he responds “Conny’s mother becoming human.” I wasn’t prepared for such a touching answer. This arc ending with the result I expected but not in the way I expected.

Jean’s great escape

Yelena and Onyankopon are set to be executed for opposing the Eldian Empire. Yelena seems ready to die but Onyankopon is more talkative. Onyankopon is a interesting character in Attack on Titan. He’s thinly drawn but innocent in a way that everyone else isn’t. He genuinely wanted to save his homeland and aid the Eldian people at the same time. Other characters notice this, even Floch. I don’t feel bad for most of the characters in Attack on Titan at this point, especially now that their all been indicted in someway. Personally, I would have been fine if Yelena got killed but not Onyankopon. Regardless, Jean and Mikasa have a plan. They collude with the Cart Titan to rescue Yelena and Onyankopon and escape with supplies. Hange, Armin, Mikasa, Levi, and Annie all join forces with the Marley to save the world.

Anime

Attack on Titan Season 4, Episode 22: Thaw

Attack on Titan Season 4 Episode 22,” Thaw,” opens with Eren telling the Subjects of Ymir that he “will use the Titans to trample all life in the outside world in order to protect the people of Paradis Island.” Annie’s father back in Liberio realizes this spells doom for the Eldians. In the Shiganshina District, Reiner Braun tells Gabi that Falco was taken by Jean Kirschtein and Conny Springer now that he’s a Titan. Reiner tells Gabi she needs to escape. Reiner has no hope of stopping Eren, whereas, Gabi still thinks she can. Her first step is to find Falco. With Falco in their custody, Jean and Conny meet up with Mikasa and Armin. They discuss Eren’s plan and consider feeding Falco to Dot Pyxis or Conny’s mother.

This suggestion leads to conflict between Conny and Armin. Conny accuses Armin of not only hypocrisy, he’s only alive because he ate Bertholdt Hoover, but not caring about his mother. Armin tries to argue that killing Falco would “invite more conflict,” between them and the Warriors. While Armin has a point, I think it’s makes more sense to feed Falco to Conny’s mother or at least Pyxis. Before they can decided, a Titan interrupts and Conny escapes with Falco. Considering the fact that this is Attack on Titan, Conny is more likely to have to kill his mother, be killed by his mother, or by Gabi than save her. I have no hope for his plan.

Annie returns

Elsewhere, Jean, Misaka, and Armin regroup with others outside the fort. They collect Thunder Spears to slay the remaining Titans, including Pyxis. When the battle ends, all the Pure Titans are exterminated and so are the Marleyan forces. Floch Forster, Onyankopon, and Yelena are dejected after Eren’s betrayal and Zeke’s defeat. Gabi learns of Falco’s kidnapping from Armin and Mikasa, and begs Armin to asks Eren to focus only on the military. When she mentions that Eren stripped Reiner of his Titan armor, Armin realizes something. Suddenly, in a basement, Annie Leonhart is freed from her Titan hardening.

It should have been obvious that Annie was going to be apart of this episode once her father appeared. Despite that I was surprised that she woke up. Earlier in this season, Eren accused Armin of falling in love with Annie due to Bertholdt feelings towards her and Armin eating him. Considering he was lying during this moment I don’t know how much truth there is to it. Regardless, Annie was fond of Armin, famously allowing him to live when she was seeking Eren. She’s not trustworthy, but she could end up on any side of this conflict. I can’t image Armin, Mikasa, and the others allowing Eren to conduct a mass genocide. However, like I said before this is Attack on Titan.

Anime

Attack on Titan Season 4, Episode 20: The power of the Attack Titan

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.

Eren gets more intense in Attack on Titan Season 4 Episode 20
Eren gets more intense in Attack on Titan Season 4 Episode 20

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.

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Attack on Titan, Season 4, Episode 17: Eren rages, as Marley invades

Short Summary:

The Marleyan’s invade the Shiganshina District. Eren Jaeger is confronted by Porco Galliard, Pieck Finger, and Reiner Braun. Overwhelmed, Eren is under threat of being killed. Onyankopon free’s the scouts, hoping they will rescue Eren. They don’t trust him. If they rescue Eren that means supporting the “euthanization plan.” Armin tries to convince them that Eren isn’t planning on euthanizing anyone. His words are met with silence.

Levi is in the worst way in Attack on Titan Season 4
Levi is in the worst way in Attack on Titan Season 4

Attack on Titan Season 4 continues exactly where episode 16 left off. Hange Zoe is holding the motionless body of Levi. She tells Floch that Levi’s dead. Attack on Titan is willing to kill off major characters but I don’t think they’ll kill Levi, yet. However, he likely won’t return to battle for a long time if at all. With all the betrayal in this season, it’s difficult to keep track of who’s on who’s side. I had completely forgot about the Jaegerist and the fact that Hange was their hostage. While they’re distracted by the return of Zeke Jaeger, Hange grabs Levi and jumps into the river. Zeke explains that he was in the “paths” a channel that connect all Titans and Subjects of Ymir. While there, his body is remolded by a strange girl. Episode 17 introduces some questions regarding the Titans. Who’s the girl? How did she control the Titan that resurrected Zeke?

In the Shiganshina District, Eren transforms in to the Attack Titan and faces Porco Galliard, Pieck Finger, and Reiner Braun alone. With all the power he’s gained and cult he’s inspired Eren has become arrogant. He marches into the fray certain of his victory. At least in this episode it appears he miscalculated. Pieck snipes at him from a distance, while Reiner and Porco engage directly.

The Cost of Betrayal

Having betrayed all his friends, Eren has no allies with the skills to combat the other Titans. While Eren struggles to fight Reiner, Pieck, and Porco the Marely army slaughters the Jaegerists. This was the most unrealistic part of this conflict. Even though Marley surprised them, it doesn’t make since that they would make better use of the environment than the Jaegerists. There were several moments when the Jaegerists were just standing there out in the open being massacred. Meanwhile, Yelena is just standing there talking about how “special” Eren is.

The most proactive member of the Jaegerists was Onyankopon. In his panic state over Eren’s possible death, he releases the scouts. Conny Springer isn’t so eager to help. With all the betrayals he doesn’t know who to trust. In my review of the last episode, I argued that the main theme was the “consequences of mistrust.” As part of the audience you feel like Conny. Who can they trust? Armin makes one final plead. Arguing that Eren is still worthy of their allegiance. Is he? Eren’s behavior was out of character for him. Armin’s argument feels plausible but are we just giving into wishful thinking? At this point everyone’s confused. Especially the scouts.