Shingeki no Kyojin: The Final Season Episode 16 [Part 1 Final Impressions]

WE GOT PART TWO ANNOUNCED HECK YEAAAHHHHHH!!!

I was honestly hoping we’d get a part 2 opposed from a string of movies. Especially since the last part of the series just isn’t well suited for a movie length and everything would be rushed and not given the right amount of breathing room it would as an anime. So I’m glad that we got confirmation of where they’re going to take the last part of the series.

I feel like I don’t have as much to say in this episode since the majority of it was the characters explaining things to each other and why they were doing the things they were doing. Not to mention I feel like I can’t go TOO into detail because of spoilers. But some major things did happen with Yelena basically showing her hand with basically poisoning the wine from the getgo and essentially differentiating everyone who was involved in the wine tasting with armbands just like how Marley did things. And I feel like it was wise of Paradis to be wary about the newcomers since their paranoia was essentially justified in the end, but they didn’t realize the extent of everything. So in the end it was a major loss for them.

But man, just seeing Yelena being “all according to plan” and such is just so aggravating. I do find myself despising antagonists who always seem to have everything fall into place with their plans. It makes it all the more satisfying when their plans inevitably fail and they have to face the consequences of their actions. To which I hope happens to Yelena and Floch because they really need to be taken down a notch.

Speaking of Yelena, I feel like every episode that passes, I dislike her more. Especially when she’s essentially just forcing everyone to conform to her and Zeke’s beliefs. And it definitely annoyed me when she told Pixis that they should have just completely trusted them from the start when they had already poisoned the wine they were going to give to the upper military officials. Like come on. Not to mention, where do you get off killing someone like that in front of CHILDREN??? I don’t care about the guy she shot (like who did he think he was spewing all that crap about Sasha in front of her FAMILY), but don’t do it when children are present!

At this point in time, I feel like Connie, Jean and Floch represent the three different parts of the fandom right now. Connie absolutely hates Eren right now and most likely blames him specifically for Sasha’s death. Jean, while not particularly happy with what Eren is doing, he realizes there is more than meets the eye and there has to be some sort of reason behind Eren’s actions. And then there’s Floch who is completely on Eren’s side. I’m definitely on Jean’s side at the moment since I absolutely do not like what Eren is doing, but he isn’t someone who would do something without any reason.

And it is still very frustrating that Mikasa is still defending Eren in a way by withholding information about what he said.

Hope y’all didn’t forget about Reiner and the others because they sure made an entrance in this episode lol. First Pieck just casually strolling into the room before shanking that guy in the neck. (This season is just full of characters suddenly walking in as if they own the place lol) And then Porco burst out underneath to try and eat Eren… Just like he did to Willy in Marley. It’s all a continuous cycle and SOMETHING has to be done to put a stop to it.

Also dang I did not see Porco in the crowd of blushing soldiers while reading the manga lol. (But considering how the art is in the manga… I’ll just leave it at that)

But man, I’ve definitely grown to really like Pieck. I didn’t particularly care for her while reading the manga and just couldn’t understand why so many people were so feral about her. I understand now lol. She’s honestly a great character addition to the cast and while her titan form is atrocious, she’s a very lovable character. She cares deeply for others and is willing to put a lot of trust into her comrades. The way she reassured Gabi while on the roof was honestly really sweet.  Though I can’t fully agree with her on basically helping to backpedal on Gabi’s development, showing that Marley is willing to help them (to an extent). But I do appreciate that she at least realizes that she and all the other Eldians living within Marley are disposable to them and would never be recognized as honorary Marleyans. I definitely felt for her when she only became a warrior to get her dad the right healthcare for his condition but in return gave up her future. It’s such a bittersweet notion and you could tell how much they cared for each other. And man was it just so epic of her to turn around and point at Eren when she was told to point out where the enemy was. TAKE THAT EREN.

But dang, they really be leaving this part off like THAT. Before seeing this episode, I was a bit worried for how they would pace this episode. I speculated they would end at a certain part, but instead they left it off at an earlier place. Which was probably for the best since this wasn’t even the biggest cliffhanger they could have left the series at as we wait for the next part. And also in doing so, they didn’t need to rush things as much as I expected. So that was good.

I also find it hilarious that literally all of the titan fights that were thought to be rematches back in Marley are actually taking place now like with Zeke and Levi and presently Eren and Reiner. LET THE TRUE REMATCHES COMMENCE.

Also, I feel bad but I can’t help but laugh at the fact that all of the Levi fans have to wait essentially almost a year until they find out the his current state. I thought they were going to touch upon it in this episode, BUT I GUESS NOT. Though looking back at the chapters that this episode covered, I feel like it probably would be best to leave that for the upcoming episode since this episode already had a lot.

But goodness that scene where the titan rips its belly open to put Zeke in was as disgusting as it was in the manga. Though granted the manga was a lot more graphic.

Overall, this was a solid episode that was obviously more build up than anything for the next part of the final season.


Final Impressions:

This season was absolutely AMAZING. It definitely blew my expectations out of the water even with the change in studio. The pacing, animation, cinematography, music… everything was just great. I’ve already stated that the manga is kind of a mess pacing-wise so seeing the MAPPA was able to continue the consistency in fixing that problem was great. Not only that, but the anime helped me understand what was going on in the story a lot better than the manga.

It also helped me sympathize more with the new characters and better understand where they’re coming from. While I don’t particularly like Gabi, I don’t outright hate her as I did when reading the manga. She’s an indoctrinated kid, it’s not her fault that she was basically force fed propaganda her entire life. I can hardly blame her for how she thinks, but I also understand how it can be very frustrating to watch. However, we’re starting to see cracks form in her beliefs and I really enjoyed seeing her slowly start to realize that these “devils” are no less human than she is. But I admit I did feel pretty bad for her in this episode. She was acting like a confused and lost little kid. She didn’t know what to believe anymore as so many things were not in conflict with each other in her mind. I can appreciate her as a character because her slow development has been really good and is a good example of the severity of what brainwashing at an early age can do to someone.

I absolutely love how they went the extra mile to show us the Eldians in Marley’s side and why they believe the things that they do. And how it ended up just making the morality gray as we don’t know who is truly in the right or in the wrong and I think it shows a lot about a person with each side they sway to. Nothing is black or white in this series and nothing happens for no reason. There is always SOMETHING behind every character’s action and they shouldn’t be taken at face value. Even if Eren makes it hard for me to not be angry with him. There were several moments in this last episode that I couldn’t address unless I give something away. Though there were times where I’m just writhing on the inside because people misinterpreted a character’s actions. Especially when if they thought back to previous seasons, they’d catch onto what was happening.

But oh man, the writing in this season is just so tight that it’s hard to not be impressed. Nearly everything that happens in this season could be called back to a moment in the previous seasons. Not to mention how it demonstrates how deep the cycle of hatred is and it really hammers home how tragic it is that it continues.

I think the only part I wasn’t as happy with was the Warrior Trio’s flashback. There were a few pretty important parts they skipped that made that flashback not as impactful on certain aspects. But considering that was my only big complaint towards the series, I’d say that’s still pretty good. And while I’m still not a fan of CG titans, MAPPA definitely has better CG than Studio Wit. I can hardly blame them for using CG for the titans considering there are A LOT of them this season and even more in the upcoming part.

I’ve been seeing a lot of people complain about how long it’ll be until the next part of the season, but considering MAPPA literally had to make this season on such short notice while still putting in the love and care this series deserves, they really deserve praise. Not to mention the world is currently still trying to put itself back together. MAPPA did this season justice so far and I’m definitely looking forward to how they adapt the rest of the series. After this part, I think I can rest assured that they will make sure this season gets the finale it deserves.

It’s been an absolute blast covering this series as I was able to take a lot more things into perspective rather than taking everything at face value. Not to mention I noticed a lot more things than I did just reading the manga. At this point while reading the manga, I think I felt like everything was convoluted. But after rewatching the previous 3 seasons and seeing everything animated, I was able to understand everything that was going on a bit better and recognize certain things. I laughed, I got angry, I shouted in disbelief, there were a lot of emotions I went through while watching this part of the final season. This first part gets a solid 9/10. The only thing holding it back from a 10 is that it’s not a complete story. We’ll see if Part 2 can successfully get that 10 out of me lol.

Until Winter 2022!

Shadow

A passionate yet somewhat awkward individual who just wants to talk about anime

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