Attack on Titan

Attack on Titan

Attack on Titan season one anime cover art featuring Eren Yeager and the Colossal Titan
Attack on Titan Cover Art

Overview

Today I felt like writing about something with a lot of action so here’s some Attack on Titan. This anime is about humanity’s last stand against the titans, which are giant monsters that look like people. Where the titans came from is unknown and why they eat humans, and only humans, is also unknown.

Humanity has been living inside a walled city for over 100 years which has protected them from the threat of the titans, but (and I won’t consider anything that happens in episode one a spoiler) the titans breach the wall one day. I should mention that there are actually three walls; one inside the other like a concentric set of rings. Obviously the king and all the other rich people live within the innermost wall while all the plebs are just protected by the outer one.

In order to fight the titans, the military is split into three branches. First are the Military Police who reside in the interior to protect the king. Only the top soldiers from each cadet class can join the Military Police.

Next are the Garrison Regiment who protect the walls. While they do occasionally see titans when patrolling the wall, they generally don’t engage them.

The final branch is the Survey Corp who go out beyond the walls in search of anything that could help humanity beat the titans. The Survey Corp regularly run into titans while out on expeditions. This is the branch which is most prominently featured in the anime.

There are currently two seasons, but a third is coming Summer 2018. The first season mainly follows the main characters of Eren, Mikasa, and Armin. The second season is more focused on many of the supporting characters. Finally, it has been said that the third season will focus mostly on one of the more popular characters in the series, Captain Levi.

Characters

Eren Yeager is the protagonist of Attack on Titan. He’s just your normal everyday kid who gets into fights and doesn’t want to do chores around the house. But after the titans breach the wall he dedicates the rest of his life to wiping out every last titan and so joins the military.

Mikasa Ackerman is Eren’s adopted sister. While this anime seems to take place somewhere in what we know as Germany, Mikasa is the one Asian character. She’s actually only half Asian, and we don’t know exactly where her family is from.

She joins the military along with Eren to protect him so he doesn’t get himself killed. Mikasa quickly becomes one of the best soldiers around. While Eren may have fighting spirit, Mikasa actually has fighting skill.

The final of the main three characters is Armin Arlert, a childhood friend of Eren and Mikasa. Armin doesn’t have Eren’s fighting spirit or Mikasa’s fighting skill, but he does have the ability to critically think about situations and come up with effective strategies to solve problems. Armin also joins the military because he wants to be able to stay with his friends.

Carla Yeager being eaten by the Smiling Titan from the Attack on Titan anime
Carla Yeager being eaten by a titan

Conclusion

I’ve heard some other people say they liked the second season of Attack on Titan more than the first, but for me it’s the opposite. I think the first season had a better plot and actually felt like one complete entity. The second season felt almost episodic to me compared to the first even though it wasn’t.

I think one thing that lead to this issue with the second season for me was that there was some big reveal during every single episode so it felt like each episode was dependent on that reveal to make it relevant. In the first season not every episode had to have some big reveal because all of the episodes worked together to progress the story instead of trying to progress it individually, if that makes any sense.

The second season is also only half the length of the first season, but that may be a good thing considering there was a four-year gap between the first two seasons, but only a one-year gap between seasons two and three.

So what this means for the rating is that I actually rated season one at a 9 and season two at an 8. However, for the sake of giving one rating for both parts together I’ll pick the 9/10 because season one makes up two-thirds of the current series so it gets weighted more heavily.

The final thing I’ll mention is that recently many people have said that Attack on Titan is overrated, and I can see why they would say that especially if the series has been spoiled for them. But even if the direction the story is going in isn’t what I would consider the best, the anime as a whole is pretty solid. The OST is great and some scenes have amazing animation and choreography.

Even though I think I like the second OP more, here‘s the first OP to avoid any potential spoilers.

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