This Attack on Titan review contains spoilers.
Attack on Titan Season 2, Episode 3
In this episode of Attack on Titan, Connie comes home to what’s essentially a ghost town, Christa and Ymir have a little moment in which something seemingly huge to the plot gets revealed, and Pastor Nick finally grows a very tiny set of balls to clue the Survey Corp in just enough about what is actually going on so our heroes can get out of the limbo the next episode.
That’s pretty much what “Southwestward” feel like—a limbo of an episode where way too many questions are asked than answers given. And worse off, nothing much of what’s happened got resolved. Now you might say, “That’s pretty typical of any Attack on Titanepisode”, but there’s something unsastifying about leaving every single scene with a “What is going on?” feeling hanging in the air.
Connie Leaving Home
The Survey Corp team guided by Connie brings up some important points about the suspicious condition of Connie’s hometown, such as where are everyone’s body parts? Did they escape to safety before the Titans descended on them? And if they did, how did they do it without horses, and why would Titans obliterate houses with no people in them?
Coupled with the Tiny-Limbed Titan’s terrifying welcome home speech to Connie, the accumulating evidence is pointing heavily in the general direction of “this isn’t a work of nature, something is deliberately being screwed with here.”
The scene closes with Reiner, who is an asshole, dissuading Connie from further prying into his hunch that something’s up, leaving us just moments away from the anime confirming the possible origin of Titans.
Christa, Ymir, and Surveying the Wall
One of the highlights for me this episode is Christa and Ymir’s little moment. I’ve always had a weakness for characters like Ymir, who acts all tough, but is a complete softie when she’s around Christa.
But even sweet little moments like these get cut short when you’re in a world as dire at Attack on Titan, because this anime does not let you rest. We first learn that Christa is from some probably very important family. So important, in fact, that Ymir’s whole official reason for hanging out so much with Christa is her family, and later that episode, Pastor Nick confesses to Eren, Hange, and the others that his church has actually been monitoring Christa this whole time.
Second we learn that there is no hole in the wall the Titans could have used to come through.
Exhausted, hungry, and scared out of their mind, the two survey parties decide to group together and take shelter in the abandoned castle they found on account of the fact that neither parties ran into Titans. Then as fate would have it, they later found themselves surrounded by a hoard of Titans and trapped in the castle. I don’t know why they wouldn’t just tough it out and get home because it’s always better to be safe than sorry. Now most of them are probably going to die.
Eren Adds Another Item to His To-Do List
The major breakthrough this episode would have to be Hange discovering that that walls are made of hardened Titan skin, and that their best bet would be for Eren to master hardening his Titan form to seal the breach.
Watching that scene unfold, especially during the part where Levi out right stated that Eren must do it because they have no other option, I kept remember that Eren (and Mikasa and Armin) is only fifteen years old. While children protagonists are common if not the standard in shounen anime, from a real world standpoint, it’s pretty heartbreaking that adults are literally pushing the responsibility of saving the entire world on kids, whether it’s necessary or not. But the normalization of child soldiers in fictional works is a whole other monster to tackle, and one for another time.
I’m downright fed-up with Pastor Nick, who on top of being a terrible person, is being extremely wishy-washy and dumb by half-assing his betrayal. We have yet learned what consequences he’s expecting to face, but if his reluctance to sell out his church before is any indication, he’s doing no one any service by dropping hints instead of just telling the whole truth.
– “Wel… come… home.” YEAH, WELCOME-THE-EFF-HOME, CONNIE. YOUR HOUSE GOT DESTROYED AND EVERYONE YOU LOVE IS GONE. BUT IF YOU’RE HAVING TROUBLE FREAKING OUT AS IT IS, LET ME, A TITAN, HELP BY TALKING WHEN I SHOULDN’T BE ABLE TO.
– Now that we know Titans formed the walls, my next question is how is the wall so smooth and seamless?
– Sasha + Potato = better than Romeo and Juliet.
– Hello darkness, my old friend: