Due to the earthquake that happened in Japan a week ago, episode 14 and 15 were released together… thus making it double the amount of work I had to do to put out this post lol. One episode has so much to talk about but two… oh goodness.
A lot of people were looking forward to Eren talking with Armin and Mikasa and I could only go: AHAHAHAHA…
This entire episode put me on edge. I was absolutely dreading this “conversation” because I had to see Eren both physically and emotionally rip into his two best friends. He essentially calls both of them slaves to something and even outright tells Mikasa that he hates her. It was at this point in the manga where I just downright hated Eren. However, while I don’t HATE Eren per say, especially when I don’t fully believe that Eren hates Armin and Mikasa, but it could just be a ruse to get them to distance themselves from him in order to protect them. Especially since a big part of his motivation is to save them. That want even extending to the past to Kruger. But man, I can’t say I’m not angry with him right now. I don’t want to hate on him since we haven’t gotten the entire scope of his plans, but he’s definitely making it difficult.
Now, I never believed that Berthold was the reason Armin starting seeing Annie. It’s true that memories do shape a person, but it’s mostly the experience of going through something that shapes a person rather than just strictly memories. It’s like, if that were all true, than Porco would have feelings for Historia due to Ymir’s influence. But it doesn’t even seem like he cares about her at all. Eren is making it seem like the person who inherits another’s memories become that person, but again, if that were the case, wouldn’t that make Eren his dad or any of the previous people from the other two titans he has? It doesn’t make all that sense to me in that regard. A lot of people have different takes on the situation and I’m on the side that Armin isn’t being influenced by Berthold, he just has his memories. I do wish we got a little more of Armin and Annie interaction back when they were cadets since its is insinuated that the two were on good terms with one another. It would have helped to show that this situation came from Armin’s free will rather than only Berthold’s memories. Though it was pointed out by someone that Armin could have became even more interested in Annie by just seeing the kind of person she was through Berthold’s memories, not necessarily influenced by Berthold himself.
In regards to Mikasa’s situation, I do feel like there is a bit of truth in what Eren said to her. How the Ackermans were designed to protect the King and that Eren’s “order” to fight triggered this protective nature inside of her. It all makes sense and it was rather heart wrenching to see her slam Armin into the table when he tried to defend her after Eren told her he hates her. Just further proving Eren’s point. However, as we’ve seen in previous episodes that Mikasa isn’t afraid to reprimand Eren when he’s wrong as shown when she throws him into the wall after he tries to pick a fight with a guy who was badmouthing the scouts and punching him in the face when he was putting down Armin. She isn’t blindly just blindly following him like a slave. And we have to remember Pixis’ comment on how there is often a little bit of truth scattered within the LIE. So what he told Armin and Mikasa may not be entirely a lie, but it wasn’t entirely the truth either.
I will admit the thing that frustrates me a lot about Mikasa is how she seems to be trying to project the Eren she wants to see onto him, not the actual person in front of her. Her insisting he was being manipulated was just… it wasn’t good and it shined a bad light on her. But while I don’t have strong feelings for Mikasa, it did hurt to see her on the verge of tears after Eren basically ripped into her emotionally. No one wants to see friends hurt each other like this no matter how you may feel for any of the characters.
Speaking of which, seeing Eren just ruthlessly beating on Armin legit made me want to cry. Not only because Armin is my son, but because that these two used to be best friends and cared so deeply for each other. Eren was always the one to come to Armin’s aid and was the most desperate to save him when Berthold burned him. Eren always put Armin up in high regard and watching him be the one to hurt him like that just hurt. But props to Armin for punching him first for Mikasa’s sake because boy did Eren deserve that.
So back to the wine… Being Levi is just pain. This poor guy has been through way too much and bad things keep happening to him. Can’t the man just live in peace?! It honestly felt like such a cruel joke having to watch his own men turn into titans, thus forcing him to kill all of them. Especially when the whole thing started by Zeke just BOOKING (no pun intended) it out of the camp right as Levi was about to just cut all his limbs off so he could feed him to someone. You gotta admit the comedic timing to that scene where it sounds all dramatic before cutting back to Zeke running. Though it was definitely very eerie to see that Zeke’s scream could be felt by those out of range.
This mofo really be thinking that Levi wouldn’t be able to cut down the titans. And while, yes, it hurt to see Levi seeing the people behind the titan faces, but he still knew the right course of action. If he had left those titans be, they would definitely pose a problem for the people living close to the area later on. And like Levi said, this really wasn’t anything new for him. But man, Zeke should really learn that whenever they fight, he’s just going to get bodied. Levi – 2, Zeke – 0.
And then we come to the scene where Floch is officially dead to me. Like, sure what Floch is saying SOUNDS good and all, but how they’re choosing to carry it out is just deplorable. Like come on, why did they have to do Shadis dirty like that? Sure he’s old fashioned, but that didn’t mean he deserved to get beat up by the new recruits to prove their loyalty to the Jeagerists’ cause. Seeing him just lying on the ground near death was heart-wrenching and I’m glad that they didn’t actually show the beat down. I honestly hate how he talks down to people and he just constantly uses this “I’m right and your wrong” mentality. He didn’t even let Hanji mourn her beaten friend. Screw you man. And Eren just watched it all happen…
It’s definitely depressing to see that the trainees just don’t have the same spark in their eyes. And while yes, titans aren’t the true enemy anymore, it’s still important to be able to combat them when they do pop up, like say what happened with Levi or even Titan Shifters. And it’s obvious that the high ranked military officers are going to turn into titans sooner or later when Zeke gets closer in range.
This episode was ROUGH. I felt like I was furrowing my eyebrows the entire time because the whole situation was just so frustrating. Everyone is hurt both emotionally and physically. I’m angry at Eren and Floch can go fall in a ditch. I even had to grimace and look away when Levi was just hacking Zeke’s legs off out of retribution for his titanized comrades.
And here we get some well needed Zeke backstory. Zeke has done A LOT of deplorable things, but it’s hard not to feel bad for him as a kid and also understanding where he’s coming from. He was raised with two conflicting teachings his entire life, while being forced to take on the responsibility of becoming Eldia’s “savior.” That’s way too much to put on a kid who doesn’t know any better.
All the kid wanted was to live a normal life or as normal of a life as an Eldian living within Marley’s walls can. He just wanted an actual relationship with his father, who only viewed him as a tool of sorts to bring back Eldia. But man, Grisha was a TERRIBLE father to Zeke, it’s honestly no wonder why Zeke hates him now. The part where Grisha was just taking out his frustration of Zeke not living up to his expectations made me feel so bad for him and seeing him just cowering under a blanket the entire time was heart-wrenching. It’s very obvious that Grisha learned from his mistakes with Zeke and became a better father for Eren (until he lost his wife… again). It’s honestly hard to blame anyone in this situation considering how everyone was brought up in this world. Again, it’s all a terrible cycle as Grisha’s father tried to mold him into a respectable Eldian and forced his beliefs on him while Grisha tried to mold Zeke into Eldia’s savior and also forced his beliefs onto him. The cycle theme going strong as always lol.
Zeke was just constantly vying for Grisha’s approval and did his best, but it just shows that just you can’t force your kid to be what they’re not. Because Zeke never wanted to be a warrior, he didn’t have as strong of a drive as the others. He just isn’t a fighter, which makes sense in present time because once Levi gets up close to him, Zeke can’t win against him. All he does well is throw due to all the baseball pitching practice and is decently intelligent but lacks physical strength and endurance. He isn’t made for war. Zeke is essentially a foil to Armin. Both were not made to go into battle, they’re strategic and would honestly just choose to live peacefully if given the choice. It also shows why he is noticeably older than all the other warrior present warrior candidates. As a teenager, he probably can be more or less on par with the kids with drive physically… which is still kind of sad.
Because Grisha was never there for them as a father, Zeke found the father figure he wanted in Ksaver. Initially it did seem like Ksaver was manipulating Zeke, but in the end, he saw his son in him and did what any father figure would do and try to save him after Zeke told him what his parents were doing. As in his name, Ksaver saved Zeke in more ways than one. Not only did he save his life when his parents were revealed to be revolutionists but also saved him from a life of loneliness. If Zeke had never met Ksaver, he probably would have just went in a downward spiral and would have most likely ended up dead in one way or another. While it was terrible on the account of Grisha, I can hardly blame Ksaver for wanting Zeke to turn in his own parents since from his perspective, Zeke was this sweet kid who was growing up in a toxic household. Which was true.
Ksaver was such a big part of Zeke’s life that he ended up finding the drive to become a warrior from him, something he couldn’t do for Grisha. After hearing about how the Founding Titan changed the Eldian body so that they wouldn’t be affected by the plague, Zeke sought to find a way so that he could change the Eldian bodies so that they couldn’t have children anymore, essentially wiping out all Eldians over time. Everything essentially built up to this epiphany for Zeke from all that he witnessed growing up. And it was the nail on the coffin when Ksaver told him about his wife and kid, wishing he’d just never been born in the first place. Zeke doesn’t want anyone to suffer anymore and while it may be pretty drastic, his plan makes sense, even if he’s sacrificing his own people in the process. But in his mind, it would be crueler to have more Eldians live in the world being looked down on and treated as monsters. And once Zeke successfully inherited the Beast Titan from Ksaver, the scene where he calls Ksaver “father” hit pretty hard, recognizing him as more of a father than Grisha.
Also in a morbid sense, Zeke who has the same VA as Deku from My Hero and was told as someone who lacked “ability” can still be a “hero” by his father figure. Am I the only one who thought this? XD
We also get to see the conversation between Zeke and Eren when Eren had snuck into Marley. Zeke believes that Grisha never changed and was forcing his ideals on Eren as he did with him. So him claiming he’ll save him makes a lot more sense now. Seems like Eren is all aboard the plan of euthanizing Eldians. Though something did bother me from what he said. Eren talked about how Eldians shouldn’t have been born into this world but this contradicts what he has been saying up to this point of he does things “because I am born in this world.” But I guess more of that will be explained later so I will leave it at that.
And then… bad things happen when Zeke pulls the trigger on himself, blowing him and Levi up in the process. Find out what happens next on “Living in this world is pain” – Attack on Titan.
These two episodes were a whirlwind of emotions. Though I was definitely a lot more on edge during episode 14. But episode 15 gave us more insight on Zeke as a character and he’s just a lot more than a rampaging monkey that throws things in his Titan form. And while I don’t agree with Zeke with everything that he’s done, I can understand where he’s coming from and why he believes the things he does… Kind of the same for almost all of the characters in this series. This series is just so well written and it has you understand why characters think a certain way and it’s not always necessarily their fault at times. Love or hate certain characters, they all have a good amount of depth to them that makes them realistic in a way.
Next week is the season finale and I’m not sure if there will a part 2 of the season or pull a Demon Slayer and come out with movies to finish this series off. I hope there will be a part 2 since it’s easier to watch weekly anime than going to a theater. But I’m sure they will let us know by the end of this season. It’s definitely been an engaging ride the entire way through and hopefully they’ll end it with a bang… which I’m sure they’ll do because this is Attack on Titan.