Attack on Titan Review

Matteo Corona, Writer

Anyone who has taken a dip in the anime community knows we are a fickle, disagreeable group who fights more than a sibling pair trying to figure out whose turn it is on their Xbox, so it is a rare sight when an anime can collectively pull us together and all say “yo this slaps.” 

Attack On Titan has gripped the anime community in a way no other anime has ever been able to accomplish. The final season has not only matched what came before it, but it has evolved into a series that no one envisioned when we all first started watching it.

Attack On Titan’s final season is by far the most distinctive season thus far, it has gone far beyond anything the show was originally set up as, to the fact that it’s almost unrecognizable. It went from a story of humanity’s terrifying fight for survival against monsters to a complex political war thriller with heroes and villains on both sides, with no clear distinction of who we should be rooting for. Like when Eren transformed into his Titan form when he was under civilian housing and seating, killing hundreds of innocent people who just happened to be on the wrong side of the war. Eren hated the Titans because they killed innocent people, like his mom. He essentially became what he hated and embraced it, calling the civilian casualties necessary for change. We still support Eren because we saw and felt everything he went through, even though we know what he did was wrong.

Plenty of series have changed direction as the seasons went on, but Attack On Titan did not just change a few character points or elements, they completely changed their whole genre. They did this so casually and the progression was so natural that you would not notice until you looked back at the show and really thought about it. 

If you were to rewatch the anime from the beginning, you would be blown away by how much foreshadowing was being done in season one alone. The foreshadowing shows that this was the game plan all along. Even though things have changed dramatically, everything feels earned. A prime example of this is the main character, Eren Jeager. Eren was a gung ho “kill all Titans” supporter after he watched his mother brutally killed by  one when his district was attacked. He wanted all Titans dead, and he would sacrifice himself to save humanity and his friends. Now however, he is not the young kid he used to be. He is now a battle-hardened war veteran who will make any sacrifice necessary, including killing innocent people or his friends to accomplish his goals. But this character progression actually feels right; he went through so much, and that would turn anyone into a cold and callous person. 

There are so many characters and moving parts in the show, but it never feels overbearing. It’s been able to balance everything out and not be crushed under its own ambition. Isayama spent all this time building up characters to where you even feel sympathy for the characters you hate the most *cough* Zeke *cough.*Some of Attack On Titan’s most famous scenes are just when characters exchange dialogue, and not many shows have that type of effect on its community. 

I could go on and on about how Attack On Titan’s action scenes are top tier, but that goes without saying. Its animation so closely resembles the manga that it blows my mind that they were able to produce and animate its final season on a very shortened time frame because of COVID-19. The twists and misdirections are done so well that it keeps you hooked.

All in all, Attack On Titan is a modern masterpiece that does not fall under some generic story. People will be doing deep analysis for years on this anime and will never be able to reach and understand every nuance in the story. It will certainly go down as one of the best anime in history, and it will be the benchmark for years and years to come.