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EP. REVIEW: Attack on Titan The Final Season


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TarsTarkas



Joined: 20 Dec 2007
Posts: 4901
Location: Virginia, United States
PostPosted: Tue Mar 09, 2021 7:15 pm Reply with quote
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To the legion of misguided Attack on Titan fans that have been cheering for Gabi's violent comeuppance ever since she murdered Sasha, this might seem like a perfectly appropriate conclusion to her story; righteous, even. While I don't begrudge any of these viewers their anger over Sasha's cruel and pointless death — Isayama obviously knew exactly what he was doing when he killed her off, and the effect it would have on his audience — I'm going to have to make my point as clearly as I possibly can: To wish death or suffering on Gabi for what she did to Sasha is wrong, and anyone that would still stubbornly cling to their anger and hatred would do well to watch “The Children of the Forest” again, because I'm not sure how Attack on Titan could make this lesson any plainer.


It is wrong for us in the audience to feel that way, considering we have the hindsight to see the big picture, but the participants in this drama do not have that. Sasha's family members probably know even less than the Survey Corps members. It took great strength and fortitude for Sasha's father to make that choice, also knowing that some of his family members might not be so forgiving of his choice in the matter. But, the matter of the type of death probably has some bearing on it to. It is much easier to kill someone, who is trying to kill you, than murdering someone who is helpless to stop you.

Some blame must go to the adults who brought Gabi to Sasha's house. No one should have had to make Sasha's family make this choice to begin with. No matter which way it had gone, someone in the family would not be happy. And now Sasha's family has to carry that scar too.

Luckily for Gabi, she was a POW, who was uniformed (in a way), and not a spy or infiltrator that were not in uniform. Those are usually killed and tortured as a matter of fact, and are not considered POW's.

It is sad to see the disconnect of Eren from the first two seasons, and the Eren of this last season. It makes me wonder, if Eren is planning to do a Lelouch (Code Geass). It is hard to see how this show is going to have any sort of happy ending. Much less our three main characters living and smiling again.
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Doodleboy



Joined: 23 Dec 2013
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 11, 2021 1:47 am Reply with quote
Agent355 wrote:
This comment thread is amazing. I mean that sincerely.

I've been incredibly frustrated by Attack on Titan discourse ever since the Marley reveal. Both the insistence that AoT is Right-Wing Propaganda and the insistence that it's the opposite, an anti-fascist story with no problematic elements, are simplistic. Proponents of either interpretation tend to ignore the good-faith arguments and legitimate points on the other side.

This is a story of contradictions; it excoriates racism while connecting it's characters powers to race (only Eldians can turn into titans) and genes (Ackermans are genetically stronger and more physically capable than other Eldians).

It highlights the cruelty of war while insisting on the necessity of fighting.

But this comment thread proves that a meaningful discussion can be had that doesn't ignore or gloss over any aspects of the story or the feelings and trepidations it can evoke based on the reader's point of view.


Thanks. Honestly the reason why I blather on here a lot is because this is kind of one of the only places to do so. Other places it will dissolve into "this story is fascist" and "Don't read politics into it.", kind of thing. There are a lot more interesting things to say about the series than that. There are absolutely things you can critique Isayama about the story, but you have to be a really poor reader to say it's unabashedly a right-wing story.

Honestly for this episode I'm glad people are starting to hate Floch. I say he's one of the more important characters in the story. Attack on Titan certainly is talking about fascism and imperialism, so it's important to have a character who represents that side.
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andramus



Joined: 19 Apr 2020
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 14, 2021 1:20 am Reply with quote
WARNING: Some spoilers regarding the last couple of episodes of the Promised Neverland are part of this comment.

I've been watching some YouTube reactions to this last episode and just realized that there's a connection between this episode, the last couple of episodes of the Promised Neverland and Batman v Superman.

A couple of weeks ago James derided the Promised Neverland for having a "Martha moment" ala Batman v Superman and I've just realised that this entire episode of Attack on Titan was a "Martha moment".

The connective thematic tissue between these three is that they were about a character coming to a realization that they were dehumanising and othering a group of people or an individual who were in fact just as human as they were.

Gabi, Norman and Batman all sought to vilify and demonize Paradis Eldians, Oni and Superman respectively only to realize or at least begin to realize that they were in the wrong through a convenient contrivance or series of contrivances.

When I think about it the series of contrivances that brought Gabi to a place where she could begin to question her fundamental beliefs far outstripped the contrivances of Batman v Superman or The Promised Neverland.

In fact of the three I could argue that Batman v Superman was the least contrived because Bruce and Clark's mothers having the same name had been part of the established canon for decades.

I never felt the "Martha moment" deserved the excoriation it has received over the years. I did think it was a little clunkily executed but I bought into it at the time. I suppose that was largely because my personal head canon/interpretation was that Bruce/Batman always knew deep down that he was on the wrong path and had built up dam walls around his conscience. Alfred had been his constant Jiminy Cricket telling him that Superman wasn't their enemy and I feel that on some level Bruce was listening but just couldn't bring himself to change course. I felt the "Martha moment" broke those dam walls or at least put a big enough crack in them to allow Bruce to engage in some self-examination that he had denied himself until that point.
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Yuvelir



Joined: 06 Jan 2015
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 21, 2021 6:23 pm Reply with quote
So after skipping a week it's a two for one.
About Ackerman spoiler[this sudden plot about their physiology came out of nowhere and of the three Ackerman we know it really only applies to Mikasa - and in a mistaken way! (although I guess it explains those broken wood planks and knife handle) My theory was that Ackerman were normal regular humans who forged a secret pact with Fritz for their special ops, that's why they were immune to the memory overwrite. I guess int he end it was more pinpointed and less interesting.
That is, unless Eren was lying through his teeth knowing how Mikasa would act to rile up Armin and her.]

About the fight spoiler[here the studio change was most noticeable, they just couldn't keep up with Levi's usual Sonic shenanigans. Although I love how it really wasn't a fight, Zeke is just completely powerless against Levi.
That said, when did this two become so idiotic? It was spectacularly careless of Zeke to assume that the unstoppable mincing machine that is Levi would be so emotionally impeded that he'd let himself be devoured. In turn, Levi gave a man with very little to lose a weapon to use against him and that he (Zeke) could maybe survive.]

And finally, regarding the ultimate spoiler[plan I guess that's the most feasible exit to this neverending conflict, if pretty inhumane (eugenics anyone?). If only the Eldian neo-nazis knew. Although it's hard to see how the Rumble plan plays into that... just giving them enough time to die out in peace?
However, there are two things that don't quite add up. If Fritz really wanted to end the conflict forever and let Eldia wither out withing the walls, why didn't he do exactly that?
The other one is Eren. Reaching that conclusion is not in line with the Eren we used to know, and if memories of past titans altered that like they did the entire royal lineage... well, as said before Fritz did NOT want to do that, did he? It would be pretty funny if rather than Eren being manipulated by Zeke, Zeke were being manipulated by Eren.]
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vonPeterhof



Joined: 10 Nov 2014
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 21, 2021 7:47 pm Reply with quote
Yuvelir wrote:
About Ackerman spoiler[this sudden plot about their physiology came out of nowhere and of the three Ackerman we know it really only applies to Mikasa - and in a mistaken way! (although I guess it explains those broken wood planks and knife handle) My theory was that Ackerman were normal regular humans who forged a secret pact with Fritz for their special ops, that's why they were immune to the memory overwrite. I guess int he end it was more pinpointed and less interesting.
That is, unless Eren was lying through his teeth knowing how Mikasa would act to rile up Armin and her.]

spoiler[The Ackermans having unusual physiology was already established back when it was first revealed that Kenny and Levi were related to Mikasa (in episode 6 or so of season 3), with Levi explicitly confirming that they all had had a moment similar to what Mikasa experienced with Eren and the kidnappers. If Eren's explanation is true the implication would be that Rod Reiss was Kenny's Eren and Erwin was Levi's].
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AksaraKishou



Joined: 16 May 2015
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 22, 2021 1:17 pm Reply with quote
"He's already special. Because he was born in this world." - Eren's Mother
"I do not wish to die. That is because i have already been born into this world" - Willy Tybur
"Why? Because i was born into this world" - Eren in response to Armin" "So why did you want to go (outside)?

And now he's saying they should all die. Yeah, right. You ain't fooling us Eren.

1- Ksaver says That the Founding titan is the one who decides how to use it's power and that Zeke is just the Trigger. Aka Zeke has the key but Eren has the wheel.

2- We've been shown 2 times the scene where Zeke throws the baseball to Eren as a form of "hand shake" and yet, they're still obscuring Eren receiving it.

3- It was low key hilarious how, during Eren's talk with Zeke, he was all "Father was mistaken, I was a mistake and yeah we should proceed with your plan" while Zeke looked like he was having one of those "This is beyond my wildest imaginations" expression. Stone Cold Face vs Tears + Orgasm.


Yeah, i'm 99% sure Eren's biding his time.[/i]
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Zefram



Joined: 02 Oct 2019
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 22, 2021 1:32 pm Reply with quote
AksaraKishou wrote:
"He's already special. Because he was born in this world." - Eren's Mother
"I do not wish to die. That is because i have already been born into this world" - Willy Tybur
"Why? Because i was born into this world" - Eren in response to Armin" "So why did you want to go (outside)?

And now he's saying they should all die. Yeah, right. You ain't fooling us Eren.

1- Ksaver says That the Founding titan is the one who decides how to use it's power and that Zeke is just the Trigger. Aka Zeke has the key but Eren has the wheel.

2- We've been shown 2 times the scene where Zeke throws the baseball to Eren as a form of "hand shake" and yet, they're still obscuring Eren receiving it.

3- It was low key hilarious how, during Eren's talk with Zeke, he was all "Father was mistaken, I was a mistake and yeah we should proceed with your plan" while Zeke looked like he was having one of those "This is beyond my wildest imaginations" expression. Stone Cold Face vs Tears + Orgasm.


Yeah, i'm 99% sure Eren's biding his time.[/i]


Yeah, its pretty noticeable that Eren never explicitly agreed and said clear "Yes" to Zeke's plan. He is never been shown catching a baseball and he very carefully replies to Zeke with answers that could be taken both ways.
Eren says "Those who are never born will not suffer" - That is true fact, but he also doesn't say lets make all Eldians sterile and let Eldians go extinct. He says "Father was mistaken", but he doesn't say what he thinks was his mistake - was Grisha too cruel or too merciful or that gone small where he should have gone big. He says " I shouldn't have been born" - but does it mean - "I am better off never been born so I would not suffer" or does he means "You, Zeke, failed so I had to be born to right the wrongs".

And eager beaver, Zeke, assumes that Eren agrees with his plan. I guess such people as he people hear what they want to hear instead of what is actually being said (or not said).
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tintor2



Joined: 11 Aug 2010
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 22, 2021 2:40 pm Reply with quote
It's like if Eren has been gradually turning from a black and white soldier to a character with gray moralities to the actual bad monster of the series. Not even Berserk went this far with Griffith due to the way the narrative introduced him before the Golden era flashback.
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Nate148



Joined: 24 May 2012
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 22, 2021 2:58 pm Reply with quote
They must have a s2 in mind because we are not yet at the twist to end all twists.
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Covnam



Joined: 31 May 2005
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 22, 2021 4:36 pm Reply with quote
I'm glad these two episodes were together, if only to give some support to how the whole Ackerman thing works. I don't care for it, due to what it does to Mikasa's character, but at least it supports how it works in universe.

I suppose that's the point, but it's odd that Eren believes Armin is being a slave to his titan predecessors memories, but he is seemingly free of their influence (he's got what, 3 titan's worth of memories now? (Founder, Attack & War))

The euthanization plan is obviously absurd, but if they could do that, wouldn't they also be able to just eliminate the Eldian ability to become titans? It's odd that genocide is the the first leap Zeke goes to.

Quote:
You get the faintest notion that there is still something that he isn't telling – not to his friends, not to Zeke, and not to us. It doesn't excuse his actions, but with context comes clarity, and I don't know if we have all of the context, yet.


There was a line that was said that points out that when the two brothers meet to use their ultimate ability it is in the controller of the Founding titan (Eren) who decides what to do with the abilities, not the owner of the royal blood. So it's still possible Eren has other plans in store rather than what Zeke wants.

Speaking of, it's really odd that they met and didn't do anything when they had ample opportunity to do so. I hope that gets more clarification.
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Zefram



Joined: 02 Oct 2019
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 22, 2021 4:41 pm Reply with quote
Nate148 wrote:
They must have a s2 in mind because we are not yet at the twist to end all twists.

Its been confirmed that this season (cour?) end at episode 16. Right now episode 15 covered chapter 114. So, last episode will cover 1 to 2 chapters max.
To fully end the series one more cour will be needed with at least 8+ episodes. Maybe 3 full sized movies?
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Sisyphusson66



Joined: 04 Dec 2018
Posts: 95
PostPosted: Mon Mar 22, 2021 5:42 pm Reply with quote
Covnam wrote:
I'm glad these two episodes were together, if only to give some support to how the whole Ackerman thing works. I don't care for it, due to what it does to Mikasa's character, but at least it supports how it works in universe.

I suppose that's the point, but it's odd that Eren believes Armin is being a slave to his titan predecessors memories, but he is seemingly free of their influence (he's got what, 3 titan's worth of memories now? (Founder, Attack & War))


The implications it has for Mikasa are not great, but I have never fully believed Eren here. I think a lot of what he is saying is just an oversimplification of their characters all so he can rationalize his hatred and dehumanization of them. Yes, there is some truth to it, but I think it is very far from a lack of free will. And with Armin, maybe there is something to Bertholt's memories having some influence over him, but Armin would have the mental fortitude to not succumb to them.

I think both of Eren's reasons for hating them can also be viewed in a very human manner, ways that Eren clearly cannot understand. Mikasa clearly cares for Eren in a way that goes far deeper than some instinctual response. That is clear here, as it has been throughout the other seasons. With Armin, him visiting Annie works without Bertholt's memories because they did have a connection in the first season, if memory serves. Her connection to him is partly what leads to her downfall.

Eren and his Jeagerists are the only characters this season who have not shown a shred of humanity. The best contrast between these two episodes is the actions of Eren and Zeke. Eren goes out of his way to reject and dehumanize the two people who most care for him. Zeke, on the other hand, invokes the name of Ksaver, the only person he has ever been close with, with his gambit at the end of the last episode.
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Yuvelir



Joined: 06 Jan 2015
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 22, 2021 6:00 pm Reply with quote
Did Eren really hate them, though? To me it seemed like he was trying to paint himself as unnecessarily hateful and cruel, and he got nothing from this call. To me it looked like he was trying to cut them off, the usual "I'll make you hate me so you don't get caught up in this/can be safe".
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Sisyphusson66



Joined: 04 Dec 2018
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 22, 2021 6:40 pm Reply with quote
Yuvelir wrote:
Did Eren really hate them, though? To me it seemed like he was trying to paint himself as unnecessarily hateful and cruel, and he got nothing from this call. To me it looked like he was trying to cut them off, the usual "I'll make you hate me so you don't get caught up in this/can be safe".


I would like to hope. However, he already got them involved with his pre-emptive strike earlier in the season. Also, why would he be ok with sacrificing the Jeagerists by involving them, but not Armin and Mikasa? He went in hostile. He didn't need to have his hand cut, he and the Jeagerists had the upper-hand, but he did because he viewed them as enemies to be subdued.

Hatred here is not a personal hatred, although it definitely comes across that way. His hatred comes from the idea that they are weak and not free, and that hatred is consistent with Eren throughout the series.
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Kuzu



Joined: 13 Sep 2019
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 22, 2021 6:51 pm Reply with quote
Sisyphusson66 wrote:
Yuvelir wrote:
Did Eren really hate them, though? To me it seemed like he was trying to paint himself as unnecessarily hateful and cruel, and he got nothing from this call. To me it looked like he was trying to cut them off, the usual "I'll make you hate me so you don't get caught up in this/can be safe".


I would like to hope. However, he already got them involved with his pre-emptive strike earlier in the season. Also, why would he be ok with sacrificing the Jeagerists by involving them, but not Armin and Mikasa? He went in hostile. He didn't need to have his hand cut, he and the Jeagerists had the upper-hand, but he did because he viewed them as enemies to be subdued.

Hatred here is not a personal hatred, although it definitely comes across that way. His hatred comes from the idea that they are weak and not free, and that hatred is consistent with Eren throughout the series.


Because Eren knows that no matter how much Mikasa and Armin care about him, they would never go along with the actions he's taken. Sure, he got them involved in Libero, but they could have easily opted out and left him to his fate.

Eren doesn't have much, if any, emotional attachment to the Yaegerists as he does with Mikasa and Armin, his literal two oldest friends. While what he's saying may have some merit of truth, it's pretty plain as day that he's intentionally trying to push them away because Eren should be more than aware that Mikasa would follow him into hell if he said so.
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