BRUH. This episode was WILD.
I think everyone has been waiting to see the others from Paradis and boy did this episode deliver. I knew that they were all showing up, but it still made me hyped as all heck. Just seeing them wiz by with the maneuver gear made me so much more giddy than I expected because it really has been too long.
Before that though, let’s talk about Willy for a moment. On one hand, I felt bad for him basically saying goodbye to his family because he knew he was most likely going to die during his speech. Which is surprising in itself since he was aware that infiltrators were already there and he essentially planned the whole thing where the audience and himself would be martyrs to set off a world war against Paradis. And then on the other hand, Willy has officially lost all my respect because he’s willing to steep so low as to sacrifice his own people (innocent people) because he views them as devils. The brainwashing truly is deep in this one. And while I didn’t feel particularly sad for his death, it did make me feel apprehensive because this is exactly what he hoped would happen to get everyone on his side. Though no one expected Eren himself to show up.
And then, we finally get to see our main group of characters that we’ve waited so long to see in a hype inducing entrance. As soon as I saw something zip across the screen, I just got so excited. The camera work for the maneuver gear has always been so interesting and dynamic so it felt so good to experience it in the new season. Especially when everyone in the scouts don a new outfit. They all be looking SLICK with their black uniforms. It’s also interesting that they all have started using Thunder Spears to fight rather than their blades now, which makes sense in this sort of battle and very reminiscent of how Kenny’s team fought. But it’s also kind of sad in a way since they are now being used to kill people. Made even more sad when our favorite dumb trio, Jean, Sasha and Conny seem to be accustomed to killing people. I always felt so bad for them when they had to turn their weapons on people in the third season since they were trained specifically to kill titans, but were forced into man-to-man combat. However in this situation, they really had no choice. Though it shows that they did in fact want to keep innocent casualties to a minimum as they only focused on killing the officers and Sasha showed Gabi mercy and didn’t shoot her.
Doing what Mikasa does best, swoops in to save Eren and you can tell from their little conversation that Eren has not been in contact with these guys for a long time. And while I don’t particularly ship Mikasa and Eren, I just felt so bad for Mikasa because she’s still trying desperately to reach out to Eren by telling him all the innocent lives he took, but he just seems less than interested at this point. Especially when he just changed the subject.
While I’ve explicitly stated I did not care for the new Warrior candidates while reading the manga before, I do feel really bad for them while watching the anime now. Especially with how Udo and Zophia ended up dying. But man, Udo’s death was TERRIBLE. Being trampled over by fleeing people was such a gruesome and terrible way to go. A part of his head was even missing. And I’m glad that Colt was able to grab Gabi and protect her from the stampede of people, which was very touching, showing just how much he cared about these kids as well. He’s a good guy and I definitely felt for him when he desperately tried to get Udo to a hospital despite it being futile all the while desperately crying out for Falco wherever he was in this madness. Man, just seeing things in motion and hearing the characters’ voices really makes you change your opinion on certain things lol.
And while I’m not Gabi’s biggest fan, I did feel for her in this moment. She watched her two friends die right in front of her (terribly if I may add). Not to mention those two Marlyan guards that her group would often talk to. I actually really appreciated those guards. Despite being Marlyan, they still treated Gabi and the others normally like any other kid. And you could tell that Gabi also had a soft spot for them as seeing them die in front of her was the last straw for her. I hardly blame her for wanting to take revenge against the ones she was brainwashed to believe were evil and with what is happening, it just enforces her mindset.
It’s honestly really sad because this basically is what happened in the first episode of the series, but in reverse and Gabi is basically Eren in this situation. Especially when she even stated how she didn’t understand why her friends had to die, very similar to what Eren said back in season 1. Even the season’s banner image supports this as it looks very reminiscent of Eren staring up at the Colossal Titan but with Eren’s titan instead. It’s all a vicious cycle and at this point, there is no taking sides. We’ve seen the good and bad on both sides and all are willing to put innocent lives in danger for their beliefs. And Floch just enforces why he my most hated character in this series so far as he basically says that everyone here is an enemy and they had it coming. Not to mention he’s just so hellbent on having a “devil” on their side. First Erwin, now Erin. He’s just supporting the cycle of violence to continue. Absolute worst.
With Willy gone, his plan goes into motion and his sister reveals that she was the War Hammer Titan and holy crap that thing is awesome. The fact it can use hardening to create any weapon it needs makes it live up to its name because this is a literal war machine. Even the Attack Titan couldn’t defeat it. I mean, it freaking summoned a giant spiked pillar in the middle of the area. How can you fight something like that? The Warhammer is a freaking BEAST. But so is Mikasa and she was able to take it on 1 v 1 for a bit. However, Eren notices something off and I have to say I’m impressed with his deduction of why the titan was formed from the feet up rather than the nape down. I would have never noticed something so crucial like that. The Warhammer ends up having a pretty severe weakness as its real body is in a crystal-like egg and the body is completely separate from it. However, I do like that this weakness balances out how OP this thing is.
Also, can we just appreciate how far Eren has progressed in his Titan Shifting abilities? He was able to transform two times in the same night in the span of possibly an hour or so.
Before Eren could eat the Warhammer Titan, Porco shows up and nearly eats him instead. But everyone’s favorite scout shows up, blades in hand. I find it funny how Levi is the only one to still use blades. Basically showing that he feels more comfortable using them in combat rather than the Thunder Spears like everyone else. But man, that moment where the scouts were overwhelming Porco was so chilling. They didn’t really explain this in the anime, but Porco looked down on Reiner for being defeated by the people within the walls and couldn’t understand how he could have lost. This was the first time that he’s had humans actually come at him intending to kill without a war machine like a tank or cannons. That’s why he was so bewildered over the fact that humans were coming for him themselves. Little does he know that these people specifically trained to defeat titans and seeing them spiderman around him was glorious. Porco has never known true fear of being hunted until now. You could tell that Marley don’t have the experience to fight against the maneuver gear as they were being overwhelmed.
This episode was AMAZING. I had been waiting for this moment for a while and while the CG was a little off putting, I can forgive it because there is a lot going on. All that’s left now is to see my son. He has to be here somewhere~