When Attack on Titans came out in 2013, it delivered exactly what the Manga had promised… blood, screams, gore, emotions, pulse-racing action and powerful characters. It shared a new perspective on the most irresponsible race on the planet- Humans! And with its right mix of slick action and emotions there was very little doubt that it wouldn’t appeal.
The Attack on Titan manga sold over eight million copies in 2014 alone: a testament to the resounding success of Season 1.
Naturally, the expectations were huge from Season 2; apart from occasional peaks and a compulsory cliffhanger at the end of every episode, AOT Season 2 has very little to offer as compared to Season 1.
That won’t stop fans from watching Season 2 after all everyone has questions that have been unanswered for the past three years.
Let’s quickly jump into a quick recap of the last six episodes.
Episode One: Beast Titan
The first episode starts from where the previous season stopped. The Survey Corps are in the pursuit of the one and only question that has kept the audiences haunting and the characters alike- “Why is there a Titan in the wall”? The only guy who seems to know a little bit about this is the Pastor, Nick. Hange interrogates him and literally threatens to throw him off the roof of the wall if the questions are unanswered. Nick is devoted to his faith that he isn’t ready to divulge anything and asks him to be killed instead. Hange; whose gender is still unknown and left to the audiences to decide, contemplates if all the walls are made up of Titans.
The second half of the episode goes back 12 hours from the first breach. Hearing about the breach at Wall Rose, Mike splits his troops into four sections heading into different directions. The episode literally peaks in the last three- four minutes when Mike goes alone into one of the villages to evacuate and is confronted by the Beast Titan which can talk!
The last scene when the Beast Titan commands the other Titans to eat Commander Mike is the most unsettling moment in the entire series right from the first episode.
Episode Two: I’m Home
Now that Wall Rose is breached and there are Titans coming in from the south, Connie and Sasha are sent to warn their respective villages.
On the other hand, Pastor Nick is further interrogated by an injured Levi and Hange. Armin points out major flaws in the walls and dispels any notion about the ‘Titan in the Wall Theory’.
Episode two is predominantly Sasha’s story, the potato girl from the first season; some parts of this episode are really disturbing especially the one which involves a Titan eating the mom’s leg while the kid keeps looking helplessly. Sasha predictably is seen rescuing the girl from the Titan while ultimately meeting her father in a dramatic way after nearly three years when she ran away from her village.
In the meantime Connie goes to his village only to find the village mysteriously empty and moreover a crippled Titan lying on top of his house with very weak legs and smoke coming out of his neck.
Episode Three: Southwestward
The third episode starts from exactly where the second ended- Connie’s village which has now become a spooky little town with dilapidated houses and a crippled, eyes wide open Titan lying on Connie’s house. His suspicions grow as he feels something was unnatural in the way his village became spooky.
There is a lot going in this episode with the Southern Team searching for a possible breach in the wall, Pastor Nick finally confesses about a ‘Sacred Will’ and according to that sacred will the church is instructed to watch over someone from the 104th Survey Corps who was initiated a year ago.
Meanwhile Hange finds out that the hardened rock (apparently a hardened fragment of skin left behind by a female titan) and the walls are structurally identical. Hange suggests that Eren in his titan form could use the same material to fill up the hole in the wall.
This is the first time in three episodes that we are drawn to Eren. Also there is no hole in the wall as the two survey parties find out and finally take shelter in a nearby castle.
The episode finally ends with the second spotting of the Beast Titan climbing over the wall to the other side. Looking at the Beast Titan, he seems to have some vicious ulterior motive.
Episode Four: Soldiers
From what we are used to seeing in Attack on Titan was washed away in a jiffy with the third episode being an anticlimax with almost zero action. That episode was only about developing the story and diving deeper into theories that could rationalize any minute.
The fourth episode just looks like a long extension of the third episode albeit with a more dramatic second half.
Episode four starts two hours before what happened in episode three- Utgard Castle. “What if the walls were never breached?” takes center stage again this time with Christa bringing up the point. I saw it on a YouTube video recently which popped up another theory- what if the titans could fly? (What do you think?)
Meanwhile at the castle Reiner gets suspicious of Ymir when she is able to read a weird language from the tin while searching for food. Is her behavior hinting at something? Further the castle is now attacked by the titans after they received orders from the Beast Titan (the horrific scream in the earlier episode hinted at this).
As I told you earlier the second half erases the memory of a sluggish first half with some exciting action and thrills. The last couple of minutes provide all the necessary adrenaline, particularly when Gelgar wants to have one last drink but finds nothing more than an empty bottle and a titan watching him from the castle hole.
The zenith of this episode lies in Ymir’s disclosure of her being another titan especially in the last few seconds of the episode. Clearly she has some backstory with Christa.
Just when you thought it wouldn’t get any worst, it gets even worst with one more human that can transform into a titan.
Episode Five: Historia
Attack on Titan Season 2 has been a like a roller coaster ride. At times you have your heart in the mouth with the suspense that unfolds and at time you just want to fast forward the episode to something interesting. Episode five is exactly the episode where you want to fast forward to a more thriller encounter.
It starts off with a flashback- that was clearly hinted at us in the fourth episode before Ymir turned into a titan. The first few minutes are just Christa’s flashback. Here we see Pastor Nick and another pastor discussing something about an illegitimate successor. You think there is something more too just what meets the eye.
The first half of the episode is pretty much dull with the flashback. It is only in the second half that the story picks up pace thanks to Ymir’s titan form as she slays titan left right and center to protect Christa and others from the titans. Oddly she speaks in her titan form something that we never saw Annie or Eren do.
Looking at Ymir’s titan form, Reiner gets suspicious weather Ymir was the titan that killed his brother.
The episode ends with Eren drawing first blood as Hange and her team reaches the castle in time to save Christa and her everyone else.
Episode Six: Warriors
After her heroic attempt at saving her friends, Ymir’s body has stopped bleeding and started emitting steam from some parts. The sixth episode I was hoping could become the focal point where all the mysteries shrouding the season could take a turn for the better. But, in the world of Titans the mysteries and characters keep getting murkier by the day and by the episode.
Hannes after his recce at Garrison announces that there is no hole in the wall. Like I said, things keep getting murkier. There is no breach between Trost and Krolva. Why is all this happening after five years of nothing?
Suddenly we see Reiner doing a U-turn. Reiner asks Eren to join them to their hometown so that they won’t have to destroy the walls anymore.
Just at this moment we are taken back 12 hours before where Hange receives Annie Leonheart’s background check. The report divulged further details of Reiner and Bertolt being the two people who came from Annie’s village.
This is exactly where the season peaks with major theories from the first season are solved. The pieces that were scattered now make sense; though only a little. The last few minutes of the episode certainly showed glimpses of what AOT Season 1 had promised for much of its duration.
I am sure; you will have your pulse racing and would want to jump on the next episode as soon as it airs.
Attack on Titan season 2 has not been the perfect season till now. Looking at the sixth episode however, the show looks like it is heading to a rollicking second half.
We at Comicclan will continue reviewing the show every weekend after the show is aired.