Tell me the secret of your silky, smooth hair!
Hello there folks! While Overcooled’s off to New York, let me get you up to speed with the usual dose of Titan rampage and things not going right for the Recon Corps. This has become one of my favourite shows of Spring, along with Chihayafuru, Snafu, Maou-sama! and Gargantia, so I’m really happy that this is sticking around for summer rather than the rest of my list, all ending by this weekend.
As highlighted in last review, we are in the middle of mankind’s most important mission: saving Wall Rose by hook or by crook because if it’s not done, the population will be further halved with more precious land loss. Failure is not an option but even when you knew it in your heart that things would not go smoothly (they never do in this series), and roadblocks would appear, Dot Pixis ups and agrees to a suicide mission involving their first prototype human-titan. Now, I like the fact that at the decision making level, we have Pixis taking full responsibility of the commenced mission rather than weak leaders like that bearded-fellow who was shitting his pants, while raising his blade against his own. This bald dude has swag enough for his entire squad and no wonder he’s at his position just because.
His leadership doesn’t reflect on everyone in the corps (because well, there are always weak ones who cry before battle and even try to leave), but when push comes to shove from Ian to Rico and other officers who might soon be sacrificial lambs to the hoarding titans, responsibility and perseverance still exists and reflects in their action. In the end, even if their best laid plan has malfunctioned into a steaming pile of poo for all they care, they still have to shuffle off the poo for later inspected usage. Eren has the privilege of being a unique sample who just might be the answer to mankind’s long-run misery. Of course, the machine is faulty right now but would you just leave a jet plane just because few screws came loose? You will do whatever to secure the perimeter and goddamn haul the plane to safety because it costs millions of dollars! So, I was all with Ian’s decision to protect the asset rather than abandoning it.
Of course, Mikasa was doing everything possible for Eren-sama as to her anything works until his ass is safe. His berserk mode must have shattered her resolve but being the warrior able to perform unimaginable feats, titans are small fries and cutting them down in a jiffy is simple when she knows Eren’s safe. That’s her pure logic, which motivates her to function. In this episode, the rest of Eren’s so called friends were more of background noise but I was happy to see Jean give it his all. I don’t know how he always ends up stuck in tight corners with the recent acquisition of a granny-titan stalker but I can only hope he gets out of the spot rather than being a dead Jean.
Snap out of it, Eren, you weren’t cast in inception!
While everyone tackled the swarming titans, it was Armin who took things in his hand and literally cut open Eren’s weak spot to get him back to his senses. Now let’s be honest, most of us hated this shrimp since the beginning. Always tying down the other two and getting people killed but it’s not really his fault, he just needed some confidence in himself. His development and progress became one of the most marked, which made me realize one thing about this series: every character has a story to tell and given time you will discover most of them (well, whoever are left alive as the story progresses), in a way that all their actions would make sense. It’s the same with Armin, from a blubbering shouta to an upstanding soldier, taking up the communication end of their negotiation deal and giving it his all with avant-garde solutions. Let’s face it, till now, he has been mostly successful in planning out the scenarios against titans and army both. Seeing his plan fail and most importantly when his own best friend was involved, who he worships as an idol, he took things in his own hands and went for the major kill. It’s interesting how you’d expect Mikasa to do this but Armin was better suited with a touch of nostalgia, which was strong enough to lash Eren out of his reverie.
I don’t blame Eren for dozing off though. Are you even surprised at him becoming a lethargic old man for a while? Let me remind you, two major transformations, once unknowingly, while the other to protect his family and no food intake or much rest. Give the man a break and some time for a shuteye. He’s completely drained and someone needs to fetch him Kool-aid or Dr. Pepper to power up. However, his sense of belonging and will to survive has always been overpowering. In the darkest hour, he has the knack and instinct to perform whatever is good in that particular situation. As all protagonists go through rough patches and slowmo times, let’s give this guy a break. Though, major kudos to Armin for manning up and poking Eren at the right time and I’m sure he’ll forgive the fact that he almost severed his arm in the process. He can grow it back, sheesh.
Now that he has caught his breadth, I’m sure Eren will be rampaging across town in no time. The youthful FIIIRE raised enough adrenaline flags on its wake.
I don’t like you or anything… Bakaaaa!
In the end, however many characters bombard us on screen and then quickly move off to their death flags, the story is all about the trio and their progress in tackling their fears. For a fact, it was not really the power of family or friendship that awoke Eren but more importantly his purpose of life of new discoveries that he had shared with Armin and Mikasa when they were still living a carefree life. Previously, a lot of us questioned the fact, why Eren wanted to join the Scouting Legion but this is one of those pieces of puzzles that falls into place in identifying his motivation. He hates the existence of titans because they have walled the humans and invaded their precious vast land. They eat humans just for the heck of it, even when they don’t need to for survival. Of course, we are still clueless at the why but anyone would be pissed off with such high-handed existence. And being a shounen show, our protagonist has to have a high and mighty reason behind the wish of KILLING THEM ALL if he could. And I have to highlight, minus the loners among us, isn’t it natural for humans for wanting to discover new things? The wish becomes more acute when you haven’t experienced it at all, explained under the grass is always greener on the other side theory.
Food for thought, and I’m sure some of you have already discussed this before when Eren transformed for the first time: how come other titans go after Eren even in Titan form? Do they sense the enmity or a conscience human in him? How did the titans come to be anyway? Was it an experiment gone wrong or simple evolution? Clearly, Eren can’t be the only human-titan around. So, there’s a lot to theorize as you can see but this is the thing that keeps me hooked to the series. And for the fans out there, don’t miss the OST that has been recently released. It’s composed by Hiroyuki Sawano, the guy responsible for Guilty Crown and Ao no Exorcist OST previously and it is glorious. It should be on your playlist by tonight if it’s not already.
Preview: The hero that emerged from a titan’s husk, beckons for mankind’s hope and survival but will the plan even work? Rico tearing up is not a good sign, is Ian or someone in her squad dead? Surely, none of us will be surprised.