MAJOR SPOILERS AHEAD! WE’RE NOT KIDDING!
Holy plot twists, Batman! This week’s episode of Attack on Titan was full of surprises! This is full of spoilers, so proceed at your own risk! Missed my last review? Catch it he re!
The Scouts are still reeling from their battle at Utgard Castle. Historia (previously known as Krista) attempts to convince Section Commander Hange that Ymir is an ally of humanity, not an enemy. As Hange tells Krista that they will have to see how Ymir acts when she awakens, the group notices Hannes and his group approaching. Hannes and his squad joins the rest of the group and informs them of the reality of the situation…there is no hole in the wall.
In the middle of a background conversation, Reiner casually reveals to Eren that he is the Armored Titan and Bertholdt is the Colossal Titan. Furthermore, if Eren agrees to come with them to their home, they will agree to stop destroying the walls. Eren reflects that he thought he had enough to worry about yesterday.
Cue flashback to 12 hours prior, where Hange tells Eren that the background report for Annie Leonhart came back. The background report revealed that two others also came from her town…Reiner and Bertholdt. After the initial attack five years ago, all of their family and personal information vanished. Hange questions the group and asks them to remember if they seemed particularly friendly towards Annie during training. No one can remember seeing the three hanging out.
However, when it comes to one of the first attacks by the Female Titan, Armin remembers some surprising information. Reiner was interested in knowing where Eren was located. The Female Titan suddenly changed its course after Reiner was in her clutches, leaving Armin to believe he managed to pass the message along to her. Hange tells the group to not let Reiner and Bertholdt become aware that they know their true intentions. They come up with a plan to lead them to a trap.
Back in present day, Eren tells Reiner that he’s saying nonsense due to being exhausted and overworked, and asks Bertholdt to back him up. Bertholdt agrees, and so does a reluctant Reiner. It seems that the plan will continue to fall into place, until a flag falls off the side of the wall. This triggers a shift in Reiner’s disposition, causing him to reveal his steaming wound and declare he will follow the course of action until the end. As Eren stands there in shock, Mikasa attempts a sneak attack. This only serves to cause Bertholdt and Reiner to transform into their Titan forms, and they grab Eren and Ymir and make their escape. With Eren stuck in the Armored Titan’s grasp, he remembers the times he spent at training with Bertholdt and Reiner. Fueled by rage, he too transforms into his Titan form.
This episode had a really solid plot, and used music and background noises well. Stellar animation amplified this. One scene stands out to me as a perfect marriage of the two. Right as the flag falls, there’s a silence punctuated by the sound of the flag hitting the stone. Then, there’s a sudden shift from clouds to sun, followed by an almost optimistic orchestra. This is ironic, as Reiner then reveals his plan to follow through on humanity’s destruction, which can hardly be seen as positive. It was a cool parallel to Reiner’s reveal earlier on in the episode.
Hopefully we learn why Bertholdt, Reiner, and Annie are essentially double agents. It will also be interesting to see if Ymir was aware of their true identities. While this episode did reveal a major twist, there’s still so much more to learn about where the Titans came from, and why some people can transform into Titans.
In next week’s episode, we get to see the Scouts and Titan Eren fight the Armored Titan and the Colossal Titan. Titled “Close Combat”, it certainly looks like it will pack a punch.