I actually watched the anime this past summer and my god, why didn’t I see it earlier? I guess I was put off by its gruesomeness and the fact that it looked too . . . I don’t want to say stupid, but seriously, it looked dumb. It wasn’t my cup of tea, but whatever; I gave it a go since it was so popular. Well, let me fully retract that outdated statement and write wrong (cause this is a written review, get it) with my anime review of the epic, Shingeki no kyoujin – Attack on Titan! Caution: a spoiler or two ahead!
Mankind retreated behind 50 meter tall walls Maria, Rose, and Sina in order to survive an onslaught of giants known as titans. To avoid extinction, humans began to fight, at first by cannon fire, but soon by omni-directional mobility gear, AKA their little hook-shot gas-powered motors that let them fly. Now in year 845, the “colossal titan” breaks a hole in the outermost wall, Maria, causing the titans to flood in. Eren Jaeger, a witness to his mother’s death by titan, vows to “destroy every last one.” Humanity must rise to fight once again, willing to sacrifice everything, or else be eaten alive by the blood n’ flesh-coated terrors!
Attack on Titan has outrageous pacing. Five years fly in five minutes, while one afternoon might span nine episodes. I didn’t really fancy that aspect, as it meant that there would be periods of epic combat followed by droughts of political chatter. I also found myself lost in their debates on occasion because they talk like real politics, speaking for the good of people and for themselves.
To counter those many moments of boredom or repetition, AoT did something truly neat. At the end of each episode, they would reveal something stunning, be it another way to defeat the titans, a death of a character, or a secret key to the underlying plot. Those last few seconds caused the series to roll and roll and roll until you found yourself out of episodes to view! The show is a bolder on a hill, only gaining momentum until it inevitably crashes into a house or a tree . . . or a wall . . .
All of the characters in Attack on Titan are just amazing. Even the guy who just cries about giving up his life like 300 times! They are all important because they symbolize the one thing that drives this show: fear, and what better way to represent such a characteristic than with the masses of soldiers marching to their inevitable death? Specifically speaking, Eren Jaeger is a badass! Like seriously, he is my favorite character, as he makes me remorseful when he makes mistakes, flinch when he takes on pain, and he makes me internally cry when he suffers. There are very few characters that have the balls like Eren does, and I respect that. God I love Eren.
And that’s not all, Mikasa, Armin, Jean and the rest are all just so cool. Mikasa’s amazing skills along with her faith in Eren and Armin make her a very strong female lead. I can see why many people like her. Sure many of the characters don’t have back stories, but they are not necessary to the plot, for before the titans came, they lived average lives. The squad members are brave, cowardly, innocent, greedy, appealing, dark and human. For once, there is a cast that actually fears the enemy to death! “Why risk my damn life out there when I could be with my family?” They make me stronger the more I think about them. By the way, the deaths in this anime are realistically carried out. I honestly felt sick when they were bringing in carts of the dead. It makes me realize that “this world is so very beautiful, yet so cruel (Mikasa Ackerman).” As a side note for those who haven’t seen this series, this is where that “potato girl” is; took me a while to figure that out LOL.
I was drawn away from the animation, but after finishing the series I was totally used to it. The bold lines on faces and on character outlines drove me insane at first. They do, however, add to the intensity of the show, so maybe that is why they are there. Regardless, it is interesting and new. Also, the fight scenes are beautifully choreographed from many angles, making them thrilling to the bone! The effective use of CGI in the buildings and ODM gear is also spectacularly done. By far one of my favorite action anime; it’s worth watching just for that.
Along with great animation is an epic soundtrack that beckons with awesomeness! Hiroyuki Sawano, the guy who composed such brilliance, did a very good job at keeping up with the thrill and suspense that is generated by Attack on Titan. My favorite parts of the OST would be when the chimes are just hammered away on, creating a creepy and rushing feel that was to die for! I also love both of the openings, “Crimson Bow and Arrow” and “The Wings of Freedom” by Linked Horizon. While the first one keeps with the idea of fear and death, the second song is about celebration, breaking free, and victory. Both songs accurately depict Attack on Titan. The show couldn’t have had better openings. Seriously, go listen to them, like now.
Attack on Titan is a visual masterpiece, telling the tale of humanity’s fear of something that is above them on the food chain. Would we act in the same manner? This anime is worth the watch for anyone who can stand the bloody gore of human flesh being ripped apart. Other than that, this show has a nice set of characters that will inspire you to be stronger, physically and mentally. The show is thrilling from the very beginning up until the last seconds of the final episode. It’s seriously great, so check it out if you haven’t done so already. Once you get past the first episode, though, you might as well finish the rest of the series – it’s that addicting.
Presently, the limited edition copy of parts one and two in the exclusive ender box that is available by FUNimation entertainment with a wonderful dub (besides Eren’s English voice being a little too raspy for me) and subs included rests valiantly on my shelf, awaiting my next visit to the year 845 – the year that “mankind received a grim reminder. We lived in fear of the titans, and were disgraced to live in these cages we called walls (Eren Jaeger).”
Thank you so much for reading my opinions on Hajime Isayama’s Attack on Titan! Did you watch this anime, if so, what did you think of it? Please feel free to leave a comment below! Until next time, this is all that is on today’s menu.
– Takuto, your host