Attack on Titan – Episode 23

Alright, Survey Corps. You’re really in it now – morale is low, the public hates you, and like fifty people just got eaten by giant abominations. If ever there were a time to prove you’re secretly harboring a human-formed titan spy, just like that other human-form titan you swore wasn’t a spy, it’d be…

Well, actually, might want to keep that one under wraps. Good luck out there, Survey Corps! I’ll be right here, a healthy and anonymity-ensuring distance behind you.

Episode 23

0:00 – No recap! YEAH

1:53 – Jeez, I hope we’re not in for any startling revelations or anything 

Incidentally, I’m giving the show a hard time about how obvious this is, but it really doesn’t actually matter. Shows are not good or bad based on how surprising they are – in fact, events that come out of nowhere are generally just a result of poorly planned, seat-of-your-pants writing, not intelligent writers. Good writing should make you say “oooh, of course that’s what they were doing,” not “sure, why not”

2:00 – Really like this show’s variety of character designs . The mangaka apparently gets a lot of flack for being a pretty crappy artist, but I’d take an inconsistent artist who varies his facial designs over Moeington Sameface every time

2:05 – I also like the difference in architecture for the upscale neighborhoods 

2:40 – Well it ain’t subtle,  but it’s also no exaggeration whatsoever. Goddamn, humanity

2:43 – I like that they just wander away  while he rants at the birds

3:02 – That is a great face 

5:06 – Featured: Military Discipline 

Man, this show makes me pretty hungry for an actual dark fantasy squad-based war drama. All this gross incompetence and continuous questioning of every order kinda damages my suspension of disbelief (I say, while watching my cartoon about giant man-eating titans)

5:14 – It’s almost like the city officers are lazy and complacent or something . I guess this is something they’ve been playing out for a while – the contrast between humanity’s uselessness in the face of total fear and… well, humanity’s uselessness in the absence of total fear, too. This show’s a real downer

5:19 – Annie is not impressed 

6:04 – I already like this girl.  Guy? This… Titan wouldn’t do that, right?

7:04 – Yep, being a shounen hero sure takes guts.  Like the guts of all the people who die because you’re a shitty recruit who can’t follow a simple order

8:06 – Confound those cartoon villain superiors of ours! 

8:13 – Is it a good or bad sign that she’s already my second-favorite character? 

10:10 – Yep, solidified.  Sorry dead-guy-with-the-silly-hair-from-Levi’s-squad, you’ve been replaced in my heart by living-girl-with-the-silly-hair-in-Annie’s-squad

10:48 – Annie frikkin’ loves death 

11:32 – The actually good stuff with Erwin and Levi complicates this viewpoint , directly declaring that you have to compromise on your innate moral feelings for the sake of greater victories. But it seems like it will take the show a while to bring its more classically shounen heroes around to that realization

12:39 – aw look at him all serious in his little green suit 

12:56 – Seriously. You look like a moe jawa 

13:02 – or a really feminine hobbit 

14:20 – Direct echo of Erwin’s lesson from the scouting fiasco.  I like it

15:01 – Legitimately interesting perspective.  I’m sorry I called you a moe jawa, Armin

15:33 – I also really like that he doesn’t say anything, and just looks aside like this.  What can he say?

15:50 – Wait what. You’re tellin’ me 

15:53 – As expected of breasts 

16:01 – Jean what are you doing that is not your carriage 

16:40 – Very nice city shot 

16:57 – Mikasa has like the worst duckface 

Also yeah they’ve totally figured Annie out. That’s the whole point of this plan. Sorry Annie!

18:19 – Subtlety perhaps not his strong suit 

18:51 – Reaaally love the way they set all of this up.  Playing it from her perspective, and setting it from so far before the trap began, was a fantastic choice. In fact, I’d say this is a great example of what the episodic format can do – they used the fact that jumping character perspectives is a standard trick of the format to build to this moment without wholly telegraphing it

20:53 – Yeah, yeah 

And Done

Oh man, great episode! Really sweet structure, even the establishing first half introduced some fun new characters, and the whole second half was just gripping stuff. And not in the usual, standard action way – that was a tense, well-paced negotiation of a trap, maintaining a slow boil of danger that’s definitely a first for this show. In fact, yeah, that’s easily one of the best pieces so far. Nice work, Titan

One thought on “Attack on Titan – Episode 23

  1. “6:04 – I already like this girl. Guy? This… Titan wouldn’t do that, right?”

    I have no clue what you’re trying to say here.

    “Man, this show makes me pretty hungry for an actual dark fantasy squad-based war drama.”

    You should read the first 4 books in Glen Cook’s The Black Company. Highly recommended.

    This episode excited me, then made me sad. Annie was really intriguing in this episode, there was so much sub-text to her discussion with Armin, and it seemed there was so much more she wanted to say – but we’re never going to hear it – we’ve been teased with depth, which won’t be delivered. This episode made me happy, and then it made me sad.

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