Anime Review: Attack on Titan

Hello my sweet sugarcubes! It’s time for another Anime Review!

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Today’s review is for the popular manga turned anime; Attack on Titan. The original manga is written and illustrated by Hajime Isayama. AoT took place in the year 743; when titans, giant naked skinless creatures 3 to 15 meters tall (who looked just like giant freaky humans), appeared out of thin air and drove humanity to the brink of extinction. The people who survived built three sets of tall concrete walls surrounding their capital, hoping to keep the titans out.

After 102 years of titan-free bliss, suddenly the biggest titan ever witnessed (60 meters!) began attacking the outer wall. Unfortunately, the wall eventually broke and other titans entered the city and began to eat civilians. It is here that the star of our story, 10-year-old Eren Jaeger, really begins his epic journey. He witnessed his own mother become titan chow, vowed revenge against the titans, and joined the Training Corps to become a soldier who fights against the titans. A few years later, the day where he would face off his first titan came; and it was hella crazy.

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The character plots and development in Attack on Titan are great, although fairly predictable for your everyday shounen storyline. Eren is the typical protagonist. He’s full of passion, has a heaping dash of naiveté, and is quick to act before he thinks things through. A very relatable fellow, Eren Jaeger worms his way into your heart early on in the series when he loses his mother to a titan attack. All the feels!

The animation quality is superb in my opinion, very well detailed and not at all repetitive. Many animes have what I like to call “main character syndrome”, where the main character is always drawn way over-the-top whereas everyone else in the show looks like it’s the same character model used over and over with a few tweaks. Think Yu-Gi-Oh or Elfen Lied; you only need to see a screencap to know immediately who the main character is. Personally, I find this a little played out. I enjoy when the protagonist is more of an everyday normal Joe/Jane, it makes them much more relatable.

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It has been speculated that AoT may have a bit of a darker (if possible) undertone, by comparing the civilians to the poor, and the titans to the rich of Japan. There was a mention of the unfairness of the class system on the show. Some viewers thought of that as a poke at the wealthy 1%; similar to the Occupy Wall Street movement for example. Many people also see this relation as a strong political message; a good handful of Japanese and Taiwanese see the titans as the emerging China who threatens Japan’s economy & culture. On the other hand, there are Koreans who view the titan versus people scenario as Japan’s scary reemerging militarism, as right wing politicians return to the podium in Japan’s recent elections. Then there’s the people of Hong Kong, who see titans as the Chinese government who try to control their lives. Now, I can’t say personally as to weather or not these speculations are true, but doesn’t it sure make you think?

Overall, I would highly recommend Attack on Titan to anyone who doesn’t have an aversion to gore/horror. It’s a substantial anime, and the manga is even better. Season 1 is complete and available to watch, I await with bated breath for Season 2 to be released. There have also been decent reviews for the live action film! It was released in Japan on August 01/15, directed by Shinji Higuchi. Exciting; I know. If you just can’t get enough, read ahead with the manga. It’s available on Crunchyroll and Netflix, among other streaming websites. Personally, I prefer Crunchyroll. Now, go forth and enjoy!!

Peachy Rating:  8/10