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Shingeki no Kyojin – 03 »« Shingeki no Kyojin – 01

Shingeki no Kyojin – 02

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「その日 ―シガンシナ陥落②―」 (Sono Hi ―Shiganshina Kanraku ②―)
“That Day ―Fall of Shiganshina Pt. 2―”

Starting things off this week, we get a bit of little extra information about the history behind the series—particularly the configuration of the walls (Maria, Rose, Sina respectively) and how Shiganshina is pretty much an outpost meant to lure the Titans while also saving funding/resources. To say the least, it’s nice to see how they’re just not info dumping on us and gradually just piecing together things as we go along… because gosh darn, it’d be insane to detract from the suffering train—which just doesn’t stop.

Indeed, the continued demolition of Shiganshina resumes this week—ultimately culminating in the breaching of Wall Maria by this monstrosity and the triggering of all kinds of havoc. With food shortages galore and the refugees unwanted within the inner walls, what we end up getting is the sacrifice of virtually of all of them (almost 250,000 people and 1/5th of the population!) in order to take it back and ease the former a bit. And well, that’s just the definition of insanity if I’ve ever seen it. But, that’s just scratching the surface of the pain and suffering everyone goes through this episode, as there’s just so much else that just keeps piling on and on. There was the whole bit where Shiganshina’s defenses just prove useless, the part where this woman tries to escape by hiding in an alleyway but gets eaten anyway, the mad prophet screaming in the background, people jumping to try and get on the ship after it already reached capacity (and dying while trying to do so), Eren’s regrets regarding the final words he said to his mother…

…and it just hammers in one big thing: humans are weak in general (especially in this world). At the same time though, that doesn’t mean you have no choice but to cry. Because as long as you’re alive, you’re going to be able get stronger—which is pretty much the lesson we’re getting here. Sometimes you just have to accept that you just can’t do anything in some situations and that’s the painful lesson Eren learns this week. Luckily for him however, he has the trusty Mikasa by his side force feeding him and vowing to keep him alive, so at the very least, he doesn’t end up just sacrificing his life for nothing right then and there.

On that note though, Eren’s comments are still important ones—despite them being said pretty much on the spur of the moment. After all, it’s a valid question. Could you consider yourself truly living if you just live your life hiding behind walls and hoping that they’ll protect you? Is that how people should be? And isn’t that kind of complacency and fear the reason the they were devastated so easily? Indeed, there’s a lot of rather serious notions that Eren (and this series) brings to the forefront, and it’s something that just adds a nice touch to a series whose action sequences are more than enough already to make it worth watching. Combine that with a debut of an exceptionally epic (and great looking) ED sequence and there ain’t no better phrase that comes to mind except that “we have a winner!”

Needless to say, the overall impressions of Shingeki so far is that it’s just been absolutely amazing. With two cours (at least) to look forward to, I’m just foaming at the mouth at the moment, because there just ain’t anything better to have on a weekend than a dose of Shingeki no Kyojin. Really, this series just makes braving through the things the week throws at you worth it—and that my friends, is the mark of a great series.

**PLEASE REFRAIN FROM SPOILING ANYTHING PAST THIS POINT IN THE ANIME. Many exceptional spoilers were found in last weeks post and had to be deleted. So please, keep all spoilers to a minimum (meaning, only say them if you ABSOLUTELY NEED TO) and make sure if you do, to PUT THEM WITHIN SPOILER TAGS.

 

ED Sequence

Shingeki no Kyojin   ED   01 Shingeki no Kyojin   ED   02 Shingeki no Kyojin   ED   03

ED: 「美しき残酷な世界」 (Utsukushiki Zankoku na Sekai) by 日笠陽子 (Hikasa Yoko)

Preview

Shingeki no Kyojin   02   Preview 01 Shingeki no Kyojin   02   Preview 02 Shingeki no Kyojin   02   Preview 03
April 13, 2013 at 8:17 pm
186 comments »
  • April 13, 2013 at 8:23 pmWuz

    http://randomc.net/image/Shingeki%20no%20Kyojin/Shingeki%20no%20Kyojin%20-%2002%20-%20Large%20Preview%2001.jpg

    They have the steamed potato part included! Studio Wit earned buckets of respect right now.

    • April 14, 2013 at 4:19 amAsobi

      Implying they weren’t going to show us one of the best scenes of the manga. ^^

      I can’t wait to hear Kobayashi Yuu as her. The anticipation is killing me.

      • April 14, 2013 at 1:38 pmWuz

        Indeed. If anyone, i believe Kobayashi Yuu is the one that has the best chance of pulling off Sasha’s character the best. I just hope they include the silly facial expressions, they’re half the fun after all!

  • April 13, 2013 at 8:29 pmLuxor

    The soundtrack during this scene was absolutely amazing! http://randomc.net/image/Shingeki%20no%20Kyojin/Shingeki%20no%20Kyojin%20-%2002%20-%20Large%2036.jpg

    And if anyone is confused at the two wall thing (my friends were asking me for some clarification too):

    The humans devised a way of maximizing security by using the fact that titans aggregate in areas of large human populations to focus their defenses in small areas. The outer, protruding wall protects this “bubble” in the wall, which gives people within a little time to get to safety and is what the narrator refers to at one point.

    There’s a super jarring cut (in the manga too) that cuts from the outer wall to Wall Maria itself, and that’s where the boats are taking the people past and into the interior. However, since the armored titan broke that, Wall Maria has been lost too.

    So in the end, the humans basically lost one of the three major walls.

    • April 13, 2013 at 11:18 pminfo600

      how does this section of writing done by Zephyr not make it a better (and faster, but mainly faster) read:

      …and how Shiganshina is pretty much an outpost meant to lure the Titans while also saving funding/resources…

      …Indeed, the continued demolition of Shiganshina resumes this week—ultimately culminating in the breaching of Wall Maria by this monstrosity and the triggering of all kinds of havoc…

  • April 13, 2013 at 8:31 pmtom

    <3 how older eren sounds now :D like a boss

    • April 13, 2013 at 9:45 pmNgai

      yup, a welcome change. Sounds much more like satoru from shin sekai yori now. I guess all that crying and screaming was eventually going to add a bit of gruffness to his voice XD. Anyways by the looks of the next episode preview he’ll be back to being weakling exhibiting failure… We got some character development yet :)

  • April 13, 2013 at 8:32 pml3reezer

    G O T D A Y U M

  • April 13, 2013 at 8:34 pmRavens

    I really enjoy this episode and the last. The intensity and the story was adapted beautifully. Very few anime/story has that kind of allure that made me rush to read the manga source, all 44 available chapters all at one go. Is just so good!

    I know is only 2 episodes, but I must commend the studio and the director & staff for their adaptation, which to me present the story better than the manga. Not only is it more intense, but the story is more “orderly” than the manga. Without spoiling, do others feel the same? I know is early, 2 episodes, but knock on wood, I hope the future episodes will be as good as these 2 so far.

    • April 13, 2013 at 8:59 pmDavid

      You’re not alone… I just finished reading the manga and catching up within a day. Monthly releases are going to be a pain to wait for now.

  • April 13, 2013 at 8:41 pmRukia

    Hidden due to low comment rating. Click here to see.

    • April 13, 2013 at 11:43 pmsortedevaras

      Your choice of comment. . . unwise.

  • April 13, 2013 at 8:41 pmAscii

    I’m loving it so far, but my only ‘concern’ at this point is Mikasa’s future appearance. She looks too pretty. That’s not to say she was ever ugly in the manga, but she wasn’t really dolled up pretty either, she had a harder look about her, a grittiness that was part of her character. It’s hard to judge from one short teaser, we’ll have to see going forward. Overall, very pleased so far, and the Armoured Titan’s premiere was every bit as exciting as I hoped it would be.

    • April 13, 2013 at 8:48 pmsonicsenryaku

      i had the same reaction when i saw older mikasa…but shyyyttt i dont mind..this series could use some “pretty” amongst all the ugly it throws at us.

    • April 13, 2013 at 9:31 pmdeathtogeneric/formulaicshows

      You know, I see many folks commenting on beatified Mikasa on the anime adaptation, but if you look it, the only real difference is the eyes.

      Unlike the manga, which has narrower and sharper eyes (which can be described as “sleepy eyes”), this anime’s Mikasa has the typical Japanese anime girl eyes, which is about 3-5 times bigger. Not quite eyes-big-as-your-fist-with-no-nose territory, but pretty close to the run-of-the-mill japanese anime girl eyes, mind you. To the studio’s credit, it’s quite rare when the main boy has bigger eyes than the main girl, ah ha ha~!

      And yes, she has this anime permanent lipstick on and therefore looks to have much fuller lip than the manga’s, but…but.. All right, she’s different! She’s been basically designated to attract teenage boy fans in the anime, which is like 70-80% of the all anime watchers, so can’t be helped.

      • April 13, 2013 at 9:41 pmsortedevaras

        Idk I think the manga Mikasa looked better too. :/

      • April 13, 2013 at 10:33 pmbolton

        you are correct with the eyes, but except in zoomed portions of the manga, the real difference is the coloration of the lips. it really stands out than from the manga.

      • April 13, 2013 at 10:35 pmbolton

        i replied faster than i read. all things considered, it’s not something i mind. i do think that they could have done better if they stuck closer to the material with how she looks, but her new look isn’t bad at all.

    • April 13, 2013 at 10:48 pmkhawlin

      Yeah the facial differences in manga emphasized how Mikasa was Japanese in a Caucasian world since her race will have direct bearing in an upcoming arc.

      I blame Aku no Rotoscope, after that disaster I doubt any production is going to get near to realistic facial proportions.

      • April 14, 2013 at 2:48 amCheque

        Isn’t her surname Ackerman though? I’m not really sure how their races are divided in this universe, since I haven’t read the manga, but is she mixed or something? If the mangaka meant to make her Japanese, surely she’d have a more Japanese name… I’m not saying it wouldn’t work, since it IS a different world, but it just doesn’t really seem logical.

      • April 14, 2013 at 6:29 amCybersteel

        Oriental mother + Caucasian father = Misaka

    • April 13, 2013 at 11:18 pmhaseo0408

      Well you have to remember she distinguihed herself for her unique apeareance so there is no surprise in seing her this beatifully animated.

    • April 14, 2013 at 1:46 amNic

      I have to agree. And I honestly think it’s more the lips than the eyes because it makes her look as if she was wearing makeup. That being said, I really like the art style of the anime. It’s just that having her look a little more plain would have brought home her badassness better.

    • April 14, 2013 at 3:01 amjaen

      Actually at first I thought that anime is adding some decoy protagonists compared to the manga.

      Then I noticed the potato in Sasha’s hand, realised I must have missed something and rewatched the bootcamp introduction to recognise that Chirsta is Christa and Mikasa is Mikasa.
      I’m not sure what they did it so considering Mikasa in the ED (which is fantastic by the way) looks as she should.

    • April 14, 2013 at 11:43 pmKiseki

      I can’t say I quite like Mikasa’s lips either (that’s the only thing, everyone in the anime is prettier than they were in the manga anyway), but it was stated that Mikasa and Christa were pretty girls, and they’re the ones with the pink lips for emphasis. In comparison, Sasha and Ymir do not.

      I am soo excited for potato.

  • April 13, 2013 at 8:42 pmAmatsu

    • April 14, 2013 at 3:45 amYojimbo

      Hidden due to low comment rating. Click here to see.

  • April 13, 2013 at 8:44 pmLuxor

    Well, Christa’s quite pretty ♡_♡
    http://puu.sh/2zDRk

    • April 13, 2013 at 8:57 pmZephyr

      Mikasa all day.

      • April 13, 2013 at 9:01 pmLuxor

        Oh of course, Christa’s got nuthin on Mikasa.

      • April 13, 2013 at 9:36 pmsortedevaras

        You know its all about Annie.

    • April 13, 2013 at 9:41 pmkondee

      http://randomc.net/image/Shingeki%20no%20Kyojin/Shingeki%20no%20Kyojin%20-%2002%20-%20Large%20Preview%2001.jpg

      More of a ‘Potato Girl’ fan. Sasha…my favorite mountain gal :P.

    • April 13, 2013 at 10:37 pmbolton

      for some reason, even though i knew for sure armin was blonde, it never occurred to me while reading the manga that Christa (could) have blonde hair as well.

    • April 14, 2013 at 8:27 amFlappy

      lol, since no one has mentioned her: Ymir! :D

      • April 16, 2013 at 1:57 pmagr0n

        There is a a girl named Ymir?

      • April 17, 2013 at 3:39 amNaYa

        Shhhh, that name isn’t supposed to be mentioned until much later.

    • April 16, 2013 at 2:02 pmagr0n

      Oh so that’s another character! Well I kind of thought that Armin was actually a tomboy girl, she looks allot like him.

  • April 13, 2013 at 9:01 pmlivid

    Hm, looks like they’re doing this chronologically, instead of in flashbacks. If that’s the case, I’m looking forward to some light humor in the next episode (potatogirl, I see you!!!)…this show sure needs some smiles, being grimdark as it is.

    • April 13, 2013 at 10:47 pmbolton

      i for one would prefer that they not do this. flashbacks were made to great use in the manga by alternating those humor scenes with the more action-packed ones. i do like the backstory, but i feel as though they would be better used as breathers than an actual backstory.

  • April 13, 2013 at 9:03 pmbk

    • April 13, 2013 at 9:18 pmLuxor

      The Shingeki OP makes anything look awesome :O

      • April 14, 2013 at 4:30 amCybersteel

      • April 17, 2013 at 12:46 amsortedevaras

        Oh god that face. . . my boner may never recover.

    • April 13, 2013 at 9:21 pmZephyr

      LOL WHAT THE

    • April 13, 2013 at 9:26 pmZen

      Oookay….

    • April 13, 2013 at 9:39 pmsortedevaras

      So the singer is Indian Erin? I approve, that dude looks like he could mess up a titan with easy then do a sick dance on its corpse.

    • April 13, 2013 at 9:39 pmNgai

      Dude… pure gold.

    • April 13, 2013 at 11:32 pmwargear

      This song is soo epic it even makes that vid epic LOL!

    • April 13, 2013 at 11:37 pminfo600

      …and the epic Japanese production shall meet massive Bollywood production, and it shall be excellent (and funny)…

    • April 13, 2013 at 11:50 pmMrRei

      ok.. i laughed. XD

    • April 14, 2013 at 2:36 amCybersteel

      Japanese Animation take on romantic comedies of Bollywood? Gonna be lots of running around trees.

    • April 14, 2013 at 8:31 amFlappy

      Made my day~
      It was like this edited video was made just for this song.

    • April 14, 2013 at 9:52 amJustin

      attack on indians

    • April 17, 2013 at 8:46 amLeena

      LOL This made my day

  • April 13, 2013 at 9:09 pmZen

    Shingeki is structurally exceptional. Its world is well developed and interestingly constructed, as are is its characters. Overall it is what many people would call “great.” But it is not transcendent. It doesn’t stand out thematically, playing with the same tired themes that are staples of its genre (shounen/action), your typical friendship/betrayal/love fare, albeit with fresh and interesting twists. And in terms of narrative progression it is quite mundane; the landmark events of the story are nothing out of the ordinary, again just the usual stuff that you’d expect out of a story of its ilk, not once while reading the manga did I feel like any of the events that occurred were particularly imaginative- but they were chiseled to perfection and had interesting twists. It is clearly an excellent story written by an immensely talented author, but aside from the intricacies of its world, it fails nonetheless to challenge the boundaries of imagination with respect to actual plot-line elements. (No examples to avoid spoilers) As things stand Shingeki is a great story- but hardly a classic for the ages…

    • April 13, 2013 at 11:26 pmbolton

      chiseled to perfection is probably the best way to put it. i gave you a downvote originally but i would change it if i could. you are right that they do not try and change the game up, but everything is near perfect and i love the feeling of anxiety and suffocation the story gives you. it’s paced really well, and at least i felt the flashbacks were put to good use (though it feels like some people would enjoy the academy parts first).

    • April 13, 2013 at 11:46 pmZen

      Chiseled to perfection within the pre-defined boundaries of its genre. Aside from certain rather ingenious (But low-impact) elements of its setting like the swinglines and the titan size scale, Shingeki does little to nothing to break the boundaries of shounen in terms of thematic subject matter and actual storytelling elements. It is an exemplary example of shounen manga done right- but in the end, that’s all it is- shounen- and little else, making few if any attempts to break the boundaries of its genre; never attaining true, universal excellence, let alone supreme transcendence…

      • April 14, 2013 at 12:46 amRei

        In my opinion, a classic manga is something that attests its supreme quality against the changes over time. With Shingeki no Kyojin manga still ongoing, we are promised nothing of its future possibly “ground-breaking” twists and complexities.

        But I’m curious: in your opinion, what current shounen manga has so far been able to attain the quality of being a classic?

      • April 14, 2013 at 1:03 ambolton

        You don’t have to repeat yourself, I thought it was already clear that I was speaking within your context.

      • April 14, 2013 at 9:51 amZen

        @Rei

        But I’m curious: in your opinion, what current shounen manga has so far been able to attain the quality of being a classic?

        Recent ones? A classic for the ages that breaks the boundaries of both its genre and storytelling in general? Honestly can’t think of any. But I can think of plenty of old ones, the first Gundam for instance, or the original Lupin III TV series- and several recent examples that attempt to push the boundaries to varying degrees, but fail to do it substantially (The last two Ohba/Obata collabs, Shaman King’s ending [Only the ending] and to a lesser extent FMA [The manga/Brotherhood, obviously].) The thing about shounen as a genre is that it’s been around for a long time. And two (major) things happen over time that make it less likely for universal classics to be produced.

        One, genres become more well-defined over time and eventually reach a point where they are too well-defined. That presently insufferably restrictive Weekly Shounen Jump slogan “friendship, perseverance, victory” has been around for a long time. But it wasn’t always that way; in the early days of the slogan’s conception when the actual meanings of the terms were actually still in flux (I.e. people were still debating what “friendship, perseverance, victory” meant for Jump and what kinds of themes and plot elements would be “acceptable” to use in jump for the portrayal of these qualities.) manga writers had substantially more freedom to do as they pleased. Because back then the terms were still ill-defined; there were far fewer thematic/plot restrictions associated with them because the ground-breaking works that would impose definitions upon the genre didn’t yet exist; writers were free to create new works according to their whims and compete to become a “genre defining work.”

        In the present however the shounen jump slogan is no longer an ill-defined, amorphous thing that writers can twist and warp according to whim. Because of the numerous genre-defining works that have come before, the words “friendship, perseverance, victory” in terms of Jump now have a substantially definitive meaning. And because genre boundaries are now so well-defined, new writers are often afraid (risk averse) or unwilling (comfort zone, tradition) to venture too far from the norm, and when they do you can be certain that their editors will be there to stop them feeding their uncertainty by saying things like “That’s just not the Jump way (tradition)” or “That’s too risky, no one will read it (risk-averse)” or “You know you’re bad at stuff like that, right? (comfort-zone).” And so the author caves into the insurmountable pressures and is unable to produce anything substantially ground-breaking even when it was his original intention to do so.

        In the present many anime/manga genres, shounen being one of the prime offenders, are so well-defined that their genre definitions have become immense restrictions on innovation. If I ask someone, “”What makes a shounen manga?” he would be able to tell me that shounen stories have theme set “A,” plot elements “B” and character types “C” and this is immensely problematic if what you are looking for is a universal classic that breaks the boundaries of storytelling- because the boundaries are so well-defined, few are daring enough to venture out of them substantially, and when someone does attempt to do so, he might not even be allowed a chance by risk-averse, business-minded executives. Which was not a problem in the early days when what the term “shounen manga” actually meant was yet ill-defined.

        Two, as time goes on probabilistically there are simply less and less possibilities for universally groundbreaking storytelling. Look at the amount of shounen manga in existence today, look at it, innumerable legions. I think it is safe to say most of opportunities for groundbreaking storytelling within the genre have already been taken. I’m sure everyone’s heard of the phrase “It’s all been done before.” The thing is that shounen manga has been around for so long and is so prolific that just about every possibility for universally groundbreaking ideas that fall within its genre subset has been done before. In other words, there is simply very little room remaining, if any, within the subset of themes and plot elements that fall within the traditional boundaries of shounen manga for new, universally cutting edge developments. Shounen writers need to start looking outside their genre for inspiration if universal transcendence is what they seek, because at present there is very little room for it left within their traditional boundaries.

        But anyways, back to Shingeki. As a shounen manga it is quite impeccable, especially in the later chapters. But I reemphasize that it is ultimately shounen, and little else. Aside from several low-impact elements of its setting (swinglines, titan size scaling [Low impact because it does little to alter actual character interactions, unlike high-impact setting elements like say Psycho-Pass’ Sybil system that rules over all of society]) it literally does next to nothing substantial in terms of true, universally groundbreaking innovation. Its themes and plot elements fall strictly within the pre-defined boundaries of the shounen genre and don’t touch on anything universally groundbreaking that might fall within its thematic subset (Mostly because there isn’t much of groundbreaking stuff left in shounen). (Although there is arguably a little genre-breaking with some minor aspects of Mikasa’s character, particularly her stoicness). Whatever the case, the miniscule amount of universally groundbreaking innovation that is present within this tale hardly warrants universal classic status, the elusive Holy Grail of storytelling…

      • April 14, 2013 at 3:00 pmintroverte

        @Zen

        Rather than the shounen “genre” becoming too well-defined, I thought a problem might be that it is too loosely defined, and so near impossible to break out from. I have viewed shounen to simply mean marketed towards younger male audiences, encompassing not only action genres, but also many romcoms and other genres as well. But if we are only looking at shounen action, which indeed is very well defined, there are several certain characteristics that I associate with the standard shounen series:

        Show Spoiler ▼

        With regards to 1) and 2), Eren already possesses/obtains both near the beginning of the series, as opposed to over the course of the series, and I find it unlikely he’ll gain anymore. There doesn’t appear to be the presence of 3) yet, though with recent events in the manga, that may prove to change.
        While Shingeki certainly doesn’t present anything groundbreaking or new, mostly due to reasons made in your second point, here I’m simply nitpicking that it isn’t quite your stereotypical shounen series.

        As to whether Shingeki no Kyojin in paticular will make its mark in the history of anime isn’t something a single person, such as I, can determine from the story alone, and so I don’t have much to say about it. I actually tend to judge my impression of a series on production values other than the story, believing execution and presentation to be more important than the actual content itself, so long as the actual content is not completely terrible.

      • April 14, 2013 at 11:13 pmMormegil

        “Shingeki does little to nothing to break the boundaries of shounen in terms of thematic subject matter and actual storytelling elements. It is an exemplary example of shounen manga done right- but in the end, that’s all it is- shounen- and little else, making few if any attempts to break the boundaries of its genre; never attaining true, universal excellence, let alone supreme transcendence…”

        You should watch Hunter x Hunter, then.

      • April 15, 2013 at 6:04 amtotoum

        You say this and yet

        1)Japanese magazine “shonen jump”, the most popular magazine in japan that publishes most of what people associate to shonens (naruto,bleach,one piece,dbz etc…) turn down Attack on Titan telling its author that the story would need a rewrite (and I insist on rewrite,it wasn’t just about tuning down the gore) to fit in with the other manga they publish

        2)In france the publisher is labeling it a Seinen because they feel it would give the readers he wrong idea about the manga.

        If Attack on Titan was playing it safely and was just conventional shonen as most people see it none of those two things would have happened .

      • April 15, 2013 at 7:31 amZen

        @toutoum

        Read what I wrote below. Genre definition is indefinite and fluid. As long as all or most of the elements of a story plausibly fall within the confines of its self-purported genre as defined by precedent, then I consider it to be firmly grounded within its genre without breaking it. In other wards, as long as a reasonable person would believe that most or all elements of the story fall within genre norms (Arbitrarily >5% prevalence or something) then I do not consider a show to be genre breaking in any way, regardless of any fluidity of genre definitions…

    • April 14, 2013 at 1:00 amintroverte

      While Shingeki remaining within standard shounen themes can’t really be argued against, can you think of a particular shounen series that doesn’t do so? Even FMA:B stays within the lines as well, as far as I can remember. It’s not necessarily a bad thing, and you don’t need to break through the lines in order to make a memorable anime either. I might hesitate to call Shingeki shounen though, for reasons other than themes.

      I’m not sure what you mean by imaginative, but so far I’ve thought the direction of the plot development has been pretty interesting.

      • April 14, 2013 at 8:25 amZen

        Then perhaps it is an affliction of shounen and many anime/manga genres in general. They are too well-defined; too restrictive in terms of themes and plot-line progression. It was never my intention to devalue the show and decry it as a travesty to stories in general. It is not a travesty; it is an exemplary example of its genre- certainly memorable and unique, but it does nothing revolutionary. For most people, it is enough that a story merely be interesting but for me I am ever in pursuit of transcendent tales, revolutionary and cutting-edge in nature, that push the boundaries of not only their genre but story-telling in general, pioneers that expand the domain of acceptable thematic subject matter and plot beyond the pre-defined confines of not only its medium, but also all tales in general. This is what I mean by a “transcendent tale.” For what it is, this show is a great one. But not transcendent…

      • April 14, 2013 at 9:09 amfyram

        ^ Your standard is too high. That kind of story only appears once every… a while I guess?

      • April 14, 2013 at 12:24 pmZen

        @fyram

        Like I said, true universal classic status as elusive as the Holy Grail, especially these days- but that’s what makes it worth pursuing…;)

    • April 14, 2013 at 2:24 amAnanas

      That sure was pompous.

      • April 14, 2013 at 1:40 pmKenta

        Agreed.

        Shingeki no Kyojin is amazing not because of its plot, but because of its world-building and the feelings it gives you. I’d never felt chills running up my spine before until I saw this anime. It may have shounen elements, but it’s a good balance against the pretty grim and dark atmosphere that otherwise permeates this anime.

        If the anime keeps it up (though it’s far too early to say), I think it’ll surpass the manga.

      • April 14, 2013 at 2:13 pmZen

        Here is the problem with many people’s perspectives. I am not saying that Shingeki isn’t great- it is, and I’m enjoying it immensely. What I’m saying is that it isn’t a classic of the order of something like LOTR or the first Gundam. There is this cognitive bias that exists within people that equates anything negative which is said about something that they are partial to/like a lot with overwhelming negativity. A subconscious feeling that “If I really like something, then it must be perfect, or at least as close to perfect as humanly possible and anyone who criticizes it is either a sourpuss or a hater.” Which is patently false. Nothing, even the the most acclaimed universal classic of all time, is perfect, and there are many great/good works that are not of this transcendent quality that are awesome nonetheless, Shingeki included. People conflate personal appeal with objective quality- they are not the same thing…

      • April 14, 2013 at 2:28 pmZen

        Shingeki no Kyojin is amazing not because of its plot, but because of its world-building and the feelings it gives you.

        A classic example of conflating personal appeal with objective quality. The bottom line is that the plot is the vast majority of the story and there is nothing objective about disregarding most of the story when making an overall objective evaluation of it. The massive personal appeal of the setting and atmosphere should never overwhelm something as important as plot which is the vast majority of any story when making an objective critical evaluation of its overall quality. It’s just like the recent Bioshock Infinite debacle. People gave it ten out of ten based on the strength of its story alone (Which if I might add was medium-breaking, but hardly universally ground-breaking) and ignored the terrible, mundane combat system and gameplay altogether- when combat and gameplay is half the game

    • April 14, 2013 at 11:34 amWanderer

      This is… thought-provoking. Very interesting comment, you have my upvote.

      • April 14, 2013 at 12:08 pmZen

        Thanks, that’s the whole reason why I write these things, to encourage folks to expand their the horizons of their perspectives…;)

      • April 15, 2013 at 11:39 amMgMaster

        Well Zen,it definitely worked in my case.Albeit I was discouraged of reading that huge wall of text at and the smaller ones at 1st,I’m glad I did.

        Case & point:your walls of text need more upvotes :P

        So far,Shigeki seems to be getting a bit too hyped up which is always a sign of worry in my book.I got fooled once with Guilty Crown and even a 2nd time with SAO and despite this looking quite more promising so far,I’ll be damned if I drop my guard again around overly hyped up shows.

      • April 15, 2013 at 12:14 pmZen

        Thanks, MgMaster…:)

        SAO is an interesting one- of exceedingly poor objective quality when it comes to story and yet still obscenely popular. I’m seriously starting to think that there is an emerging genre called the “wish fulfillment genre.” When they succeed, stories in this genre tend appeal to people massively not through objective narrative quality but because they resonate deeply with basal human desires and fantasies. Stories like SAO, Twilight and its progeny, and Fifty Shades of Grey would fall squarely within this genre.

        While these stories tend to be of horrendous objective quality, they are nonetheless massively appealing because they speak so deeply to the most basal of human desires- and being able to craft a tale that can do something like that, regardless of its objective quality, is probably a kind of genius that needs to be acknowledged in of itself…but the ironic thing about this genre is constructing such a tale often involves pandering to simplistic, basal cliches which more or less precludes your story from ever breaking through genre wall and attaining higher medium or universal level greatness of transcendence…

    • April 14, 2013 at 5:04 pmZen

      @Introverte

      Rather than the shounen “genre” becoming too well-defined, I thought a problem might be that it is too loosely defined, and so near impossible to break out from.

      So what you are saying is that the shounen genre is difficult to break out of because it is so broad that nobody really knows what it is? An interesting notion that is entirely reconcilable with my own sentiments; we’re both right. Shounen as a genre is simultaneously both amorphous and defined. You can’t define a genre as you would a word, instead genres are defined by the presence of genre-specific tropes, themes and plot mechanics. A genre-defining work is a work that first introduces a trope/theme/plot mechanic to its genre- if it does enough of this then it becomes a genre-level classic. A transcendent work is a work that innovates substantially on a higher, universal level measured against all narratives, not simply those within its genre or medium. Anyway, genre-defining works make a particular trope, theme or plot mechanic a part of its genre (Your work doesn’t necessarily have to amazing to be genre defining, even a decidedly bad writer can have innovative ideas). And a genre is defined by these works- you look at all the elements that these genre-defining works have introduced to specific genres and if a work contains enough of them, then it is said to belong to genre “X” or genre “Y.”

      As you might imagine, this is a rather imprecise way of defining something, but really every aforementioned element that is involved in defining a genre falls on a spectrum from those that are more or less universally present in a genre to those that are almost never present in a particular genre. Any element that falls from the “nigh universally present” end of the spectrum to somewhere near the middle should probably be considered to be genre defining (weighted according to magnitude) because they are traits that are often present in stories of a particular genre. Numerous traits fall below the midpoint; while not “genre defining cliches” in of themselves, should not be considered to be genre breaking nonetheless because they are still rather common in the genre (Something that appears 10-50% of the time in the genre is probably uncommon and rather refreshing, but certainly neither groundbreaking nor genre-defining). Shingeki reaches deep into the pot for these; it uses many uncommon genre elements, while also a substantial number of almost-universal elements of its genre such a themes, character types and plot techniques that ultimately ground it firmly within the shounen genre. Yet it remains refreshing because the author ensures that he uses a healthy dose of uncommon to semi-rare elements for plot construction- disappointingly, few if any of these actually break the threshold of truly genre-breaking rarity (0-5% prevalence as the arbitrary estimation) and the few that arguably do are decidedly low-impact (Swinglines, titan size scale).

      (DISCLAIMER: Percentages are arbitrary values concocted for illustrative purposes only and should not be taken literally.)

      But back to the issue of poor definition. Shounen as a genre is poorly defined because you really can’t define genres as you do words; you define them with this arbitrary scale of prevalence; if something is prevalent enough in a genre, then its presence along with enough other genre-defining elements plants a work within a particular genre. In other words, all genres are rather poorly defined- and a genre like Shounen is particularly ill-defined because it is so prolific- so many things could be considered to be at least minimally genre-defining parts of it. It all ends up being rather confusing; writers often don’t know where to start when trying to break the genre because they don’t know the limits of its present extent- so they fail at doing so, often for a lack of comprehensive knowledge of their genre although it is notable that some succeed not because of knowledge but because of inherent unique inspiration.

      As for “well-defined” what I am referring to is those elements that are so prevalent within a genre that they are regarded to be more or less universal (>90% prevalence arbitrary cut-off). In shounen, this is the whole “friendship, perseverance, victory” tripartite and similar themesets as well as certain character tropes like the uber-dense harem lead and certain plot mechanics like plot-kai. These elements are very well-defined and so prevalent in shounen to the point where if your story doesn’t have enough of them, most people will not consider it to be shounen any longer, especially in Japan due to their rigid notions of tradition. Having lots of these overused elements in your story has become something of a prerequisite to entering the shounen market. The only trouble is that when you have too many of these things, it severely restricts what you can do with in terms of innovation.

      There is only so much that you can do with dead-horse theme A after all. One or two dead-horse semi-universal themes is fine, but when the traditions of your genre virtually require you to include dead-horse theme B,C,E and F as well as character cliches X and Y and plot elements Q or R simply so that you may be considered to be a part of the genre things start to become rather overwhelming to say the least; when you employ too many of these kinds of elements it becomes extremely burdensome on innovation, making it difficult to do anything groundbreaking. The Shounen genre (And many other anime/manga genres) has developed to a point where there are simply too many of these semi-universal elements and a deep-seated reverence for tradition in Japanese culture has manifested as an industry creed which mandates that stories which do not possess a sufficient number of these semi-universal elements are inherently inferior genre pariahs. Tradition is important to Japanese Shounen writers, and they feel obliged to stick to it or even if they don’t, the majority will force them to do so.

      So you see, Shounen as a genre is simultaneously both well-defined and ill-defined. It is ill-defined because it is so prolific and writers often don’t have enough knowledge to determine what is common to the genre, what is uncommon to semi-rare and what is actually of genre-breaking rarity. And it is well-defined because its prolificness has created an obscene number of semi-universal elements that are considered to be central to its genre, and it is virtually mandated that you include a certain substantial minimum amount of them in your story in order to be considered as part of the genre because of a strong reverence for precedent and tradition in Japanese culture.

      Shingeki strikes a fine balance. The writer has ensured that he included a sufficient amount of uncommon to semi-rare elements to keep the story in its entirety fresh. At the same time he has also included enough semi-universal elements so as to ground his work firmly within its genre according to tradition. As for elements of truly genre-breaking rarity, let alone universally ground-breaking rarity, there are few if any to speak of. This story is decidedly shounen, albeit shounen which stays fresh by using a lot of uncommon to semi-rare elements of the genre. Isayama didn’t want to be labelled as a pariah, so he took things as far as he thought would be acceptable in terms of industry tradition- and he succeeded in creating something great- but hardly genre-defining or even universally transcendent.

      Anyways, good thoughts. :) The whole point of me writing these things was never to push some controversial opinion that I personally believe in. Rather it is to write something plausible that challenges predominant public opinion on the matter in order to get people to think about things differently; to provoke thought, to widen perspectives. For people to come up with their own unique ideas about how quality should be assessed, grounded in true objectivity, of course- and you just nailed it…;)

      The protagonist gains power-ups over the course of the series.

      Shingeki totally uses this…

      Show Spoiler ▼

      • April 16, 2013 at 12:14 amAnon

        What are you trying to accomplish with all this analyzing?

      • April 16, 2013 at 9:43 amintroverte

        @ Anon

        He’s trying to create constructive discussion, which is a nice change from the usual stuff in the comments.

      • April 16, 2013 at 10:16 amZen

        @anon

        Errm…introverte is right and if you read what I wrote you would know??? I stated my motives like twice, you know…

    • April 15, 2013 at 4:15 amRei

      While I am downright tipping my hat to an amazingly challenging arguments you raised over shounen in general and SnK in particular, there is something that doesn’t sit well with me that has to do with where all your arguments originate. If I’m not mistaken, in your very first post, your were praising SnK for its excellent plot, execution and cast, but randomly threw a criticism for not being able to attain classic qualities? And your purpose of starting the argument is to “assess the universal classic qualities worth pursuing”? So how come “not being able to attain classic qualities”, a very vague term despite all your substantial arguments over its impossibility to be ground-breaking in the future, is seen by you as a criterion to judge a medium? The way I see is: it is totally unjustified by equating “not being able to attain classic qualities” with other 3 criteria which SnK undeniably lives up to to discredit SnK. Again, I’m not saying you hate on SnK for your obvious reason, but you are probably not doing it justice by stating its inability to achieve classic status, which, in the end, is still objective and uncertain.

      Another point I want to make is you said personal appeal shouldn’t be too overwhelming, otherwise it will get in your way of enjoying the series. In my opinion, it simple doesn’t work that way. We use our emotions to evaluate something in a lot of cases, don’t we? I understand your concern over the objectivity of enjoying the series, but our differences in judgments come from different backgrounds. You may particularly fond of a character, but I can’t personally relate to him, so I can’t say I like him. In short, our personal taste really matters because it decides first whether or not your will watch this series, and second why you like it. Of course since SnK is largely plot-driven, we can be sure our rationality is there to ensure our objectivity. However, the level of enjoyment SnK brought on us remains subjective.

      • April 15, 2013 at 8:58 amZen

        Another point I want to make is you said personal appeal shouldn’t be too overwhelming, otherwise it will get in your way of enjoying the series.

        You misunderstand me, but I think it’s my fault for being unclear and I apologize. Whenever I employ the term “evaluation” I am not referring to “evaluation” in the sense of “evaluation for enjoyment.” I am referring to an objective, critical evaluation of a story’s quality independent of the biases of personal enjoyment (Or at least as independent as humanly possible). I’m a critic, (or at least playing the role of one here…XP) and so my personal biases are of minimal import…

        If I’m not mistaken, in your very first post, your were praising SnK for its excellent plot, execution and cast, but randomly threw a criticism for not being able to attain classic qualities?

        Here is the disconnect that you are seeing. It is because I am simultaneously using several different levels of evaluation, and probably wasn’t clear enough on the division (I.e. didn’t bother to explain at all [Sorry again, you have to understand, this is already turning into a literature dissertation.]…XP).

        There are three levels of evaluation that I am employing here. The first and lowest level is genre-level evaluation; how does a story measure up when compared to others within its own genre. A story that innovates sufficiently and is supported by excellent execution in comparison to others of its genre is a transcendent, genre-defining classic with regards to its own genre; those that have great execution compared to others of its genre but insufficient genre-level innovation are merely great, but not transcendent classics.

        This is the level of evaluation that I am referring to when I say that Shingeki is superb. Everything about its execution is superb in comparison to others of its genre, but it fails to innovate sufficiently even with regards to the norms of its own genre, so it is merely a great work within its own genre and not a genre-defining transcendent classic, let alone a great work or even a transcendent classic with regards to higher levels of evaluation. (medium and universal)

        The second, intermediate level of evaluation is medium-level evaluation; how does a story measure up against others within its own medium, and not simply its genre. For Shingeki, this is the entire medium of anime/animation in general. Does Shingeki (or whatever other show that is being evaluated) innovate (break from the norms of its medium) sufficiently and have strong enough execution to be considered a medium-level transcendent classic? A show can be great or even a transcendent classic on the lower genre level any yet achieve neither medium-level greatness, nor medium level transcendence. If the strength of a story’s execution measures up to the greats of its entire medium then it is a medium level great- and if, on top of that, it innovates sufficiently (breaks the norms of the larger medium, not simply genre-level small stuff) then it becomes a medium-level transcendent classic.

        While Shingeki’s execution is excellent in comparison to others of its genre, I don’t think we can plausibly say that it actually measures up to the greats of animation history like say, Disney’s Fantasia or even the first Gundam. And in terms of innovation it barely even innovates with regard to its own genre, let alone the larger medium. So it is a great only in lowest, genre-level sense of things, but not a genre-level transcendent classic, and fails to achieve both measures of excellence on a larger, medium-level scale.

        The final, highest level of evaluation is universal-level evaluation. Here all tales in existence are measured against one another, independent of all lesser divisions of genre and medium. It’s the proverbial big league of storytelling. A tale that measures up in execution to the titans of all stories is a universal-level great. And if it also innovates sufficiently, substantially expanding the boundaries of the universal set of elements that are found in all stories then it attains the elusive Holy Grail of tale-weaving; it is a universal transcendent classic. These are the greatest stories, peerless in execution and innovation- and the ultimate stick by which I measure all tales. And of course, Shingeki doesn’t even pass muster for the medium level of things, so it doesn’t qualify for contest in the big league.

        It must be noted however that all three levels of evaluation are completely arbitrarily constructed- I simply chose points in story/element classification tree where I thought it most meaningful to evaluate objective quality. In reality you could create points at virtually any level within the universal set of story elements and you could even choose to disregard the universal set if you felt like it. Your prerogative. Examples of other meaningful points of evaluation would be to instead divide the medium of animation into western/eastern animation, or only looking at Japanese anime for instance- and infinite others.

        So whenever I praise Shingeki I am really only doing so in the lowest sense of things (I.e. genre-level greatness). I really do enjoy this show and it’s one of my favorite manga series of all time. But as a critic, my personal like or dislike of a series is of no consequence- the fact of the matter is that it is sadly far below the universal titans of storytelling in terms of objective quality- and it is my duty to declare this truth, lest my integrity be compromised…

  • April 13, 2013 at 9:13 pmdeathtogeneric/formulaicshows

    Well they sure did change Mikasa’s appearance for the anime by making her face all sexed up: I bet they did to boost the DVD sales. That’s the only explanation since her look in the manga was just fine for the plot. Everyone else is just about the same except for her and now she looks totally different. But that’s ok, whatever, I can’t be bothered by every little thing~~.

    On the other hand, I am not too sure YET if it is a good thing or bad thing that they are changing around the storyline, mainly destroying the flashbacks and making it more a linear storyline for this anime adaptation.

    Certainly it’s a good thing that they are not doing a page by page adaptation (i.e. jormungand) or bastardizing the source; instead they have been adding some plots/backstory/fillers for more smooth transition and though I am not a fan of adding fillers in general, so far it’s tolerable. With the fillers, they are stretching already nail-pacing of the show to fit basically “1 chapter = 1 episode”, but as long as they will keep it that way -in other words, as long as they don’t suddenly rush things like crazy and trip themselves over doing so to try finish things in “later episodes”-, I am fine with it.

    I did feel sometimes they were a bit too many flashbacks in the manga (and thus getting in the way of the story sometimes), so perhaps this more linear storyline is a good thing even though I do worry that since they are taking plots from later chapters to build the linear storyline, the later chapters could potentially rushed. It’s very evident that unlike the manga, which uses flashbacks to introduce side characters slowly one by one, the anime appears to be pulling most of those to introduce them early on and then get on with the plot.

    The snail pacing is also a bit of concern since the manga is out around 46 chapters or so, the two cours will barely touch the half point of already on-going show, let along catching up and finishing.

    Time will tell whether this anime adaptation will succeed, I suppose. But regardless of its success, I can already feel the manga purists complaining about changes of this and that, LOL! I myself don’t really care they change things around -I get more irritated for side character backstories being dropped entirely, to be honest- since the medium is different and you can’t expect they would be page by page, word by word carbon copies.

    • April 14, 2013 at 4:45 pmLibelula

      I dont mind that much, changing the order of the narration, BUT – and this is the only reason why I wouldnt have done that: ist completely taking away the surprise effect. Im now telling a little bit about the events to come, without saying anything concrete – but for some people it might already be too much info so here’s my spoiler(?)-alert – while the action scenes (which come later now) were that exciting in the manga because you didnt know the characters -they were all equally unknown so you feared for everybody or nobody – now you get to know important characters beforehand. and the outcome of the action scenes might thus seem a little bit more cliched than it would have been if they sticked to the order in the manga, if you know what I mean. Oh well, if they mix things up with less important characters, it wont make a difference. This is one time where I hope they include filler-material;)

  • April 13, 2013 at 9:17 pmKaka

    Thank you Mikasa for punching Yuuki Kaji in the face when he was getting annoying…

    Oops, I meant Eren.

    • April 14, 2013 at 3:30 amCraigs

      Yuuki Kaji sure loves to voice annoying characters like Haruyuki/Shu/Konekomaru

      • April 14, 2013 at 3:41 amhoshiboshi

        Well, someone has to do it.

      • April 14, 2013 at 4:08 amSingerOfW

        You mean the producers love him voicing such roles. At least he still gets to voice such badasses as Johnny Joestar or Asahina Satoru.

    • April 14, 2013 at 9:21 pmFarHorizon

      I cheered the punch. He was so annoying for a stretch there.

      I’m not saying it was unrealistic or anything – they managed to get across his emotional state very clearly, it just drug on for forever.

  • April 13, 2013 at 9:20 pmTitan

    Loving this adaptation much more now. The Armored Titan was badass this episode and it seems like they’re doing the adaptation in chronological order just like SAO (Pardon me for saying this xDD)~~

    All the anime orginal parts add more depth to the story, it’s just amazing. Most people dislike Mikasa’s new look, but I’m fine with it. Even though I’m a bit put off as well, it’s not that much of a problem.

    Also, let me show you guys a comment I found.
    “Eren and his stupid shocked expression didn’t get any less annoying in this episode. It made me smile when that dude said “because you’re weak” to Eren, but I legitimately laughed out loud when Eren had a flashback of it. Mikasa punching Eren was the best part of the whole episode. Writing is very average. Dropped like Skrillex.”

    I just have to laugh at this idiot’s apparent hatred for Eren and this show. I wonder if there are anyone else like that, but saying “writing is very average” made me laugh so hard that I wish Titans would eat this guy. Saying your opinion is one thing, but commenting on the writing despite not having any skills in that regard is unreasonable.

    Anyway, for those who want to know which chapters the next episode will cover. It is chapter 14 and 15. You can go read it if you want, but you can also wait for the next episode. It’ll be even more epic haha

    • April 14, 2013 at 12:19 amTitan

      Hmmm, seems like I said something that ticked someone off? May anons please tell me what said wrong? @~@ I don’t think I put any spoilers or anything.

      Have I said anything that offended anyone? Either way, I want to say something in spoilers this time, so click it at your own risk.
      Show Spoiler ▼

    • April 14, 2013 at 1:16 amCybersteel

      Because youa re a titan? nuff said

    • April 14, 2013 at 9:31 pmFarHorizon

      Well, I can completely understand the Eren hate. He did go way over the top on whiny, irrational & impotent rage this ep. It’s not a big deal for me because it appears they are going to time skip a bit over the new few eps & he’ll be more experienced & mature. I agree it is premature to drop, but everyone has different triggers for that. Whiny main char is a pretty common one I’d think.

      WRT writing, I don’t think that has carried the show, but I wouldn’t complain about it either. I expect there to be more twists, turns & intricate dialogue later. I appreciate the simplicity of the intro plot, because it focuses on areas that really make you want to see the next ep: the world design, mystery of what will happen and the horror of it all.

  • April 13, 2013 at 9:30 pmEntrav

    Even though they changed some parts, it actually added some depth which is nice. I was worried that they may not have enough source material, but going by this, they can pace everything out better and give more development to the characters. Good job Wit Studio.

  • April 13, 2013 at 9:39 pmTre

    I like how they handled the Armored Titan. Quite frankly, the first few chapters of the manga were quite disorganized in terms of explanation of the “wall within the wall” area where Shiganshina lies, and because of it, the importance of the Armored Titan was kind of glossed over.

    You really couldn’t immediately tell why it destroying another section of the wall was so important in the manga. The anime makes it a lot clearer.

    • April 14, 2013 at 1:16 amCybersteel

      wallception

  • April 13, 2013 at 9:50 pmkondee

    Quite the powerful intro. I can’t wait until next week’s arc starts where we are introduced to many of the awesome supporting characters in the time skip. Immensely enjoyable adaptation so far.

  • April 13, 2013 at 9:51 pmLeslie

    I wish somebody would invent the airplane so the situation isn’t so hopeless. The story’s addicting but I end up with a really heavy feeling reading the mangal

    • April 14, 2013 at 7:51 amYager

      I think if they did invent an airplane a Titan might be developed as a counter…maybe a “Laser-class” titan a la MV:Alternative ?

  • April 13, 2013 at 10:00 pmpooop

    I wonder how these titans came about. Are they an offspring of genetic mutation in humans, or they fell from the sky? Also I wonder if Eren knows what that key unlocks? Now that he is older, maybe he does know. Anyway, I hope we get to see them kick butt next episode because I am starting to have a grudge against titans! Hopefully, during the time skip, they have developed tools/techniques to successfully kill a titan. So far, there hasn’t been any hints of success in killing them. We will just have to wait and see, unless i look at the manga.

  • April 13, 2013 at 10:05 pmcassz

    Beautiful piano cover of the OP: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OB8_wfxWSGs

  • April 13, 2013 at 10:32 pmGeoff

    The titans themselves are a pretty interesting mystery. So far here’s my thoughts on this:

    1) They aren’t smart. Else they’d have invented some new means to break through the walls.
    2) They seem too perfectly suited to their roles.
    3) The appearance of the armored Titan and Mr. Big titan puts to sleep any thought that titans came out of a normal evolutionary tree. Not to mention it’s said that they appeared out of nowhere. It’s like they were designed from the ground up to destroy humanity in general.

    So something had a bone to pick with humanity and created the titans.
    For some reason, that creator had to take 100 years in order to design the wall-busting titans.

    Whatever will happen in this series, killing all the titans won’t solve the problem. Whatever their source is, will just make something nastier to throw at them all.

    Also, how did they build those walls up with the titans attacking them from all sides? That alone should have taken them centuries given their tech… but I’m fine waving my hands at that part. :3

    • April 13, 2013 at 11:01 pmbolton

      I’ll just have to say that for the last bit, you won’t be disappointed, and you are welcome to keep your mind at work on it. It’s not a point that was just glossed over.

    • April 13, 2013 at 11:10 pmHalfDemonInuyasha

      It just further makes me think of Claymore in that the Titans, given just HOW human they look (which also makes me think of the Titans of Greek Mythology), could possibly be some kind of human experiment gone very wrong (all in the name of making humanity better probably or something), and that weird nightmare Eren having with his father only makes me further think that.

      The smaller Titans looking pretty flabby and “weak” (a cannon just tore up that smaller one easily), but the much bigger ones being far more muscular and powerful and, in the case of the one we see at the beginning here, even armored now. Kind of like how Claymore Ranks tend to be in terms of awakened forms; the stronger they are, the much more “developed” they are as Awakened Beings; normal, weak Youma being little different than mutated humans (at least to a warrior), but the higher up the ladder you go, they start getting a lot more elaborate and even human-looking (in some grotesque way anyway).

    • April 20, 2013 at 8:50 pmmythnut

      I was thinking much the same thing, though I didn’t put too much emphasis on it, since as a MAD SCIENCE! fan, I think that about everything: “what would be the best design?” (Answer: the self-replicating one! Did you see how many of those buggers there were?)
      One thing I don’t do, though, because it feels like cheating, is tap into the “uncanny valley” for added horror. If the Titans were actually designed by some mad (possibly nonhuman) scientist, that creator is probably an experienced sadist. A (very) big cat would probably be a more efficient predator; the reason to make them plodding, bipedal things is because it is so, so disturbing.
      But yes, I agree: a “natural” origin seems less plausible than an artificial one; humans, even at the stage of technological development seen here, have already long since surpassed all natural predators. Thus, no predator that poses a credible threat can be called natural.

  • April 13, 2013 at 11:29 pminfo600

    My gosh. That. Was. Excellent. (I’ll just be speechless now, cause this should be in consideration for the anime of the year at minimum.)

    BTW – Dat ED animation

  • April 13, 2013 at 11:39 pmhaseo0408

    “The righteous shall rejoice when he seeth the vengeance: he shall wash his feet in the blood of the wicked”.
    Psalm 58:11

    “It is useless to meet revenge with revenge: it will heal nothing”.
    J.R.R. Tolkein

    “Vengeance is in my heart, death in my hand,
    Blood and revenge are hammering in my head.”
    William Shakespeare, Titus Androcinus

    “Revenge is like a ghost. It takes over every man it touches. Its thirst cannot be quenched until the last man standing has fallen.”
    Vladmir Makarov, Call of Duty Modern Warfare 2

    Eren´s situation is different form what any mortal could understand, the target of his revenge are monsters themselfs, something you shouldn´t feel sorry for killing but I wonder, I wonder what will the price he will pay in order to destroy his enemy, because, the thing about revenge is that no matter how justify or understandable it is, it ALWAYS ask for a HIGH price for it to be consumed. So, which quote you guys think suit Eren the best.

  • April 14, 2013 at 12:13 amMeldoy

    Powerful intro, great episode. Can’t wait for the next ep!

  • April 14, 2013 at 12:15 amZaku Fan

    Eren is right and wrong with his talk about not being cattle. He’s right in his goal of killing every one of the giants but wrong in how he goes about it. Mindlessly running off to get killed nets nothing. Being cold and focused is what he needs to do ala Mikasa.

    Those that have the mental capacity but not the physical like Armin should work on improving their tech whether it be agricultural, medical or weapon tech

    • April 14, 2013 at 7:53 pmHalfDemonInuyasha

      I tend to see Eren’s vengeance, so far, like earlier Sasuke in Naruto. Becoming just so consumed with hatred that nothing else seemed to matter and he was willing to throw away everyone and everything if it meant getting even just a little bit of extra power as quickly as possible in order to fulfill his vengeance on Itachi and look where that got him.

      Of course, the situation also, maybe more so, mirrors Anakin Skywalker in Episode II with his mother’s death at the hands of the Tusken Raiders/Sand People. Rather than just any one in particular, Anakin gained a hatred for the entire species and, as shown, he just went and slaughtered every single one at that same camp mercilessly and without remorse.

      In the end, for both of them, they really didn’t do much more then, as Danzo put it with Sasuke, throwing their anger around at everyone else, throwing tantrums, and such.

      • April 14, 2013 at 8:44 pmZaku_Fan

        The difference is that this is an extinction level event where the giants will destroy humanity. All morality, honor and justice is suspended when your entire species are fighting for simple survival. Hatred allows those fighting to bypass fear. Focused hatred allows you to inflict maximum damage. Eg Kill all the giant children before they grow any more. Immoral? Sure. Dishonorable? Of course. But it is effective.

        If the war ever ends these people will be a problem in society but to HAVE a society, there must be survivors. To have survivors, the giants must be destroyed or rendered utterly impotent.

      • April 14, 2013 at 11:55 pmHalfDemonInuyasha

        Actually, if you go inside Sasuke’s mind, that’s pretty much how it was for him too; the extinction of the entire Uchiha who, to him and others, was a Clan above all other Clans.

        I also wouldn’t really call hatred as “bypassing” fear. More like walling it off (pun intended in this case, lol). Because when the chips are down and such people find that even their full power isn’t enough to win and they’re staring death in the face, those walls are easily torn down and the person’s fear is made very apparent.

        Though, in terms of focused hatred, unless you’re really able to live with it or are just that emotionless, it would be a different story when it comes to humans. As Eren said though, in this case, it’s mere “monsters” they’re against, so they shouldn’t have any problem with remorse, sympathy, etc, so it makes such focus a lot easier for him and others.

      • April 15, 2013 at 5:47 amZaku_Fan

        The major difference here is that its is SPECIES level extinction. It not nationality, race, clan or such. Your entire species is going down the drain. Your father, mother, sisters, brothers, grandparents, friends, children, etc are ALL going to die. Nothing even remotely connected to you such as cousins many times removed will remain.

        Forced into a dead end, nearly every living creature will come out fighting.

        Your talk about walling off fear is using anger, not hatred. Anger disperses in the face of death, hatred is much more difficult to stop. Hatred is one where the thinking that killing 1 is breaking even, killing 2 is making a profit holds sway and you’re willing to die to do it. Focuses hatred is worse in that you’re willing to stay alive to make a greater profit by killing more before you die. Hatred consumes while anger does not hence my point that they will be a problem in society but they are needed for a society to be even avaialble in the first place

  • April 14, 2013 at 12:58 amChris

    More Sasha (Potato Girl), Annie, Christa and timeskip Mikasa from next week onwards! Can’t wait.

  • April 14, 2013 at 2:05 amJhacks

    God, I can’t wait to see what kind of grand strategy the humans will do to defeat these giant zombies, especially Eren with all his talked. I’m having a hard time thinking about what the hell they will do, cuz just looking at their current situation and the type of tech they have, from the looks of it they pretty much have only old gunpowder weaponry. Unless they have some kind of steam powered mechs, that will be awesome. I hope this series does not have some kind of magical nonsense, cuz that will be lame.
    And what happened to the 50 meter tall giant that Zeus summoned in the first episode?

    • April 14, 2013 at 2:28 amAnanas

      “And what happened to the 50 meter tall giant that Zeus summoned in the first episode?”

      Show Spoiler ▼

  • April 14, 2013 at 2:11 ambaseone

    Best performance of Yuuki Kaji. Love that powerful expression right there.

    And here I thought that the titans are all males!

  • April 14, 2013 at 2:20 amc2710

    ZETSUBOU SHITA!

    Seriously… Watching the Titans eat the people is truly depressing

  • April 14, 2013 at 2:36 amAnanas

    Getting back to the earlier parts of the story with some insight on the most recent events gives a ridiculous sense of amusement.

  • April 14, 2013 at 2:59 am^_^

    female type

  • April 14, 2013 at 3:32 amMandrake

    I really can’t believe that Armin is voiced by Inoue Marina……..damn she’s good at voicing Armin

  • April 14, 2013 at 3:56 ambakakubi

    The preview, just wow. Life must hat Eren.

    • April 14, 2013 at 3:56 ambakakubi

      *hate

  • April 14, 2013 at 3:59 amsoni

    perfecttion ! on every single aspecy I havn’t read the manga but it’s the first time I see people not being at least a bit dissappointed by an anime adaptation of a manga of this caliber.

    • April 14, 2013 at 4:03 amopening

      the opening is too good !

  • April 14, 2013 at 5:29 amKevin Yamagata

    I wonder how they choose Yoko Hikasa to sing the ED. It’s quite rare (and AFAIK, this is the only case) that one seiyuu sing a song for anime that he/she doesn’t participate in. But well, maybe she’ll join as secondary character…

    • April 14, 2013 at 7:48 pminfo600

      if it is like any other big budget series (I’m looking at you, Sunrise), she may be in a minor role (ie. a disposable character that would die within 1-5 episodes of introduction)

  • April 14, 2013 at 5:47 amMgMaster

    With a great premise,2 good eps in and a LOT of potential also comes worry.

    That worry is none other our main character Eren.I really,really,REALLY hope that they won’t take like half or maybe even 1/3 of the series for him to show some SIGNS of improvement,as in maturing because such a bratty kid(and before anyone say’s anything regarding Muv-Luv Alternative,Takeru was,in my opinion,in no way like this,or at least bratty to this extent)has no place in a grimdark series such as this,unless they’d do a Deus Ex Machina with him or something which is something so cruel & terrible to do to this show that I don’t even want to think about it,especially when I’m looking forward to it so much.Mikasa and even Armin being shown as more mature & cool headed than him doesn’t help with my worry either.

    Regardless,I’ll try to keep that worry locked up in the depths of my mind for now.Looking forward to the next episode and the next review!

    • April 14, 2013 at 7:56 amZaku Fan

      Armin is mature for wanting to try and hide when the plan has been shown to not work? I don’t think so. Eren’s desire to fight back is the right one and I see nothing wrong with it. What is wrong is the lack of thinking on how to go about it.

      Lets say a 100kg Mikasa wants to lose weight because she is well overweight. She can starve herself (dumb way aka Eren’s way) or she can exercise more (smart way). The goal is not at all wrong but the way to reach it matters.

      Now lets use Armin’s method. Mikasa is 100kg. She wants to lose weight but tells herself, it doesn’t matter because she will never be able to lose weight so why try at all?

      • April 14, 2013 at 1:25 pmMgMaster

        No man,you missed my whole point(or hell,maybe I just explained it badly).We can all agree that he has good intentions but the way he goes about them makes him look kinda bratty & childish.The examples for this episode are when he wanted to punch the whats-his-name blonde soldier guy and leaped in rage at the soldiers who were badmouthing them as refugees.Wanting for things to change is all fine & dandy but whether he’s right or wrong,he acts too rashly for his own good,instead of reading the situation and using a bit of tact.I wouldn’t be complaining about this at all since he’s just a kid,IF it wasn’t for both Mikasa & Armin that just like him,are a couple of kids facing the same situation thus making him look like a usual hot-blooded,generic shounen protagonist that somehow ended in a very grimdark show that has people like that for breakast :P

        AGAIN!My complainining here is to be taken with a grain of salt for the time being as it’s just the 2nd episode and they have plenty of time to show some great character development for Eren.

  • April 14, 2013 at 6:24 amTaugeh

    The best anime this season. I have read the whole entire manga after viewing the first episode. Can’t wait for the upcoming episodes.. Shits gonna get way and way more epic!

  • April 14, 2013 at 6:41 amFafnir

    Eren’s district isn’t the only bait for the titans right, judging by the screencap http://randomc.net/image/Shingeki%20no%20Kyojin/Shingeki%20no%20Kyojin%20-%2002%20-%20Large%2002.jpg
    so what happened to the other 3 districts after Wall maria fell? Everyone in the other 3 districts evacuated as well or they held out ?

    • April 14, 2013 at 8:08 amyeahair

      Good question. Guess they all died, either by being eaten in their homes or by being sent to their deaths later on.

    • April 14, 2013 at 8:23 amRei

      I was wondering the same thing right after watching episode 2, and although we weren’t given any information about that, I realized after the armored titan has successfully breached wall Maria, it’s very likely to declare wall Maria has fallen down. If from the breach of wall Maria other titans who happen to have the same strength as the armored titan continue to attack, I don’t see how humans can manage to hold off the titans without the protection of the wall. Thus they must have sought refuge inside wall Rose.

      • April 14, 2013 at 9:03 amFafnir

        If there’s more of that crazy wall smashing Titan I can only conclude that the Titans are a sadistic bunch that likes to play with their prey….not attempting to breach the other 2 walls to give a sense of false hope to humanity

    • April 14, 2013 at 9:48 amintroverte

      When they said they recalled all of humanity within Wall Rose, I assumed that included the other three districts along Wall Maria as well.

  • April 14, 2013 at 6:47 amEclipse

    This is a great example of anime done right.

  • April 14, 2013 at 8:07 amKaz

    Mikasa Punch!!! ^^,

  • April 14, 2013 at 8:11 amyeahair

    Uhm, half serious question time: Do the giants shave? ;) I mean there were some with beards, but most of them didn’t have any. :D

    This and Suisei no Gargantia are turning out to be really good “serious” weekend anime shows.
    I never heard of this manga before watching the first episode and since I am enjoying this so much I’ll try my best to stay clear of the manga until the anime ends.

  • April 14, 2013 at 8:37 amFlappy

    Well looks like a training episode next week. Excitement level is down from last week but looking forward for what is yet to come.

  • April 14, 2013 at 8:49 amMew

    Still can’t get over how much I love the OP. Can’t wait for the next episode, I love training sequences! And I love how even though I just read the manga (ep 1 had me reading up) the anime’s depiction is fresh enough to warrant an engrossing watch. Lovelovelove. Slightly grossed out, but love.

  • April 14, 2013 at 8:51 amMagoiichi

    They turned my bishoujo Mikasa into a Super Bishoujo?! What is up with the lipgloss/stick?! They even did it to Annie!

    It’s clear who the focus of the inevitable doujins will be….>:3

    Besides Super Bishoujoing my ladies, I feel like something was changed, but I can’t put my finger on it.

    The animation continues to be marvelous and they did a nice job with the armored titan.

    The ED was great, but most importantly

    The debut of my one of my favorite characters, Sasha a.k.a Potato Girl!!!

    http://randomc.net/image/Shingeki%20no%20Kyojin/Shingeki%20no%20Kyojin%20-%2002%20-%20Preview%2001.jpg

    It seems that they’ll keep one of my favorite moments from them manga too <3

  • April 14, 2013 at 9:25 amShuA

    It’s scary how the central government could “sacrifice” hundred thousands of people in order to relieve the food shortage

  • April 14, 2013 at 9:27 amEbisu

    So we’ll get chronological order :)

    The armored giant was great and Eren’s dream was well done too. I personally found this episode even better than the past one. They are not pulling any punches really (except the too gore scenes, though not showing them can have a stronger impact).

  • April 14, 2013 at 9:34 ammac65

    Boy, many are saying Suisei no Gargantia has the bleak potential because of the director,
    but I don’t feel a ray of hope for these characters after the dark narration of these two episodes.
    Survivors — 100 out of 250,000, 0.04%! These people are effective as ants attacking a bear.
    You’d think they would unite against a common enemy, but a realistic portrayal of how humans react
    with a scarcity of resources just hits harder.

    The smirky appearance on the faces of the Titans gives me the creeps, too.

  • April 14, 2013 at 10:20 amsatyr

    Damn! that Armored Titan charge was ridiculous.

  • April 14, 2013 at 10:41 amRazgriz

    Am I the only one getting major Muv Luv Alternative (VN, didn’t see the anime so I can’t comment on it) vibes? I mean, horrible vastly overpowering enemies coming out of nowhere, check; population greatly reduced, check; young and immature main character confronted with huge amounts of suffering and despair, check; mothere/mother figure eaten (though less gruesome/graphic here) as he watches helplessly, check…

    • April 14, 2013 at 11:02 amsatyr

      I could easily say the same about Blue Gender and Muv Luv.

      • April 14, 2013 at 12:50 pmRazgriz

        I didn’t mean to sound like I was complaining, sorry if it seemed that way, in fact quite the opposite. I loved MLA and I’m loving Shingeki.

    • April 14, 2013 at 11:07 amZephyr

      Yup, I mentioned in the preview and last episode, but yeah, the creator of Shingeki borrowed stuff from MLA. Both the creators are also good friends now as well, so… :D

  • April 14, 2013 at 10:54 amLucyfer

    Damn, this is my fav anime this season. That charging Titan scene was great

  • April 14, 2013 at 11:08 amEnder905

    If my understanding is correct, after that last breach by the armored titan, the titans have free reign over the countryside between Wall Maria and Wall Rose. Is this right?

    • April 14, 2013 at 11:25 amMal

      yes

  • April 14, 2013 at 11:18 amNatsu

    Mikasa !! UFFF

  • April 14, 2013 at 11:24 amPTH

    The OP is still on repeat inside my head. It’s just too epic.

    I love the part after Eren jumps at the Colossal Titan where it sounds like the song is ending but instead kicks up a notch. All the characters jumping up like that in combination with the music gave me goosebumps. The OP really puts across their resolve to leap to whatever heights in order to break free from the Titans.

  • April 14, 2013 at 11:57 amShiki999

    that giant titan running towards the wall was the best scene for me, awesome animation.

  • April 14, 2013 at 1:28 pmlivid

    Must be the first time I’ve seen people complain about the female lead being too pretty :p

  • April 14, 2013 at 4:14 pmal

    how old were they in ep 1 ? and now(end of episode)?

    • April 14, 2013 at 5:39 pmasdfadsf

      yea I was confused. At the end of episode 2 Eren clearly said he will enlist next year…then it shows them all grown up with different faces/etc…doesn’t seem like one year passed at all…more like 5 years.

      • April 14, 2013 at 7:18 pmal

        Yeah I’m really confused they look like 3 or 4 years older..

        we need manga readers here.

  • April 14, 2013 at 7:19 pmQuervo

    Hmm… Did they ever say what happened to the 3 other bubble towns along Wall Maria?

    Shiganshina was situated somewhere south; There were still towns North, West and East of Wall Maria

  • April 14, 2013 at 7:24 pmRayzakk

    Anyone else have nightmares after watching these eps. Last thing I found myself thinking about this much after watching it was Shiki.

  • April 14, 2013 at 7:59 pmHalfDemonInuyasha

    I’m also hoping that we’ll get shown some of the politics that go on in the center.

    I mean, considering that they purposely made an entire “throwaway town with people”, coupled with the way those people are treated even just 1 layer deeper, it really makes me think “corruption” in the center.

  • April 14, 2013 at 8:24 pmJani

    Keith Shardis…. I like his style, he looks like a man who has seen many things in his lifetime and he gave it to them straight with that you are worse than livestock speech. I’m thoroughly enjoying this series, and just like all of you I cannot wait till next week.

    • April 14, 2013 at 8:35 pmJani

      Oh and one more thing I meant to ask. If Shardis and the rest of the military force within this wall knew how to kill a Titan then why on earth couldn’t they just relay that to the people of Shiganshina so those men in episode one wouldn’t have had to keep meaninglessly sacrificing themselves.

      • April 15, 2013 at 6:28 amanon

        It wasn’t a “meaningless” sacrifice. No one seriously expected to retake Wall Maria. The true goal was to reduce the number of mouths to be fed. I’m sure they sent out some soldiers with the refugees, but everyone knew that even the best soldiers don’t stand a chance against so many titans. In that case, you’d rather sacrifice the refugees than all your soldiers who might turn out useful later on when the titans attack again.

      • April 15, 2013 at 6:43 amanon

        I just noticed that I misunderstood your question. The ones who fought were the stationary troops Hannes belonged to (military police and scouting legion have different tasks) and they were the ones who were specifically trained to protect the towns. So they must know how to kill a titan, but we saw how lame/drunk they were in episode one XD The only thing I’m surprised about is that no one used the equipment that the scouting legion was shown with in episode 1. That equipment is necessary for killing those beasts.

      • April 15, 2013 at 4:34 pmRei

        spoiler tag just in case..

        Show Spoiler ▼

        Show Spoiler ▼

        tldr: its not that simple even though they know the weak point (there’s only 1.. Show Spoiler ▼

      • April 15, 2013 at 7:38 pmJani

        @anon yea, see I was definitely wondering the same thing, but I guess more will be answered in time. And to Rei, I only skimmed part of your spoiler but that actually makes a lot of sense, so much so I don’t understand why I didn’t think of that huuuge disadvantage. I guess I was just assuming the equipment they had wasn’t hard to fight with.

  • April 14, 2013 at 8:32 pmJello

    I’ve got a question…

    It’s about the opening episode’s title as well as previous knowledge that Shingeki no Kyojin’s creator is friends with Muv Luv’s.

    Does anyone know or also believe that “To the me 2000 years later” means that everything we’re seeing in the 840 years is all just an introduction or flashback akin to Muv Luv Extra?

    Then suddenly we jump 2000 years later into 2840 and it turns out Titans are aliens and the Titans that humans tamed on Earth became the frames for their Titan space mecha…and somehow Eren is reincarnated with that dream/amnesia serum his dad made.

    Although the current art style translating into Mecha…NOT SURE.

    • April 14, 2013 at 10:16 pmasdfadsf

      maybe you’re taking it a bit too far…

  • April 14, 2013 at 9:24 pmzandy

    What I want to know is why did the Titans stop attacking?

    • April 14, 2013 at 9:46 pmGoodStuffs

      hmmm they aint hungry anymore? 250k people were sacrficed… what i dont get it is why tehy havent made it a system to fork over x amount of people every year or something lol and live in constant misery! but youre safe’ish! if youre arnt the yearly sacrifice… then agian they loook like mindless zombies so tehres no negotiation with mindless zombies

  • April 14, 2013 at 9:54 pmGoodStuffs

    sooo is this eren kid gonna end being naruto super strongest ninja ever? or he just some loser thats gonna get all his friends eaten? first will be blondie locks! then poor mikasa? both saving his worthless life when he charges in on the almighty titans and would been eaten if they didnt sacrifice their lives for his?

  • April 14, 2013 at 10:05 pmThe Moondoggie

    LOL so this is where that armoured titan came out. I forgot, LOL, but manga developments recently made me curious about it again…

  • April 15, 2013 at 8:37 amVincent

    Watching these 2 episodes have been depressing for me. Everything feels so hopeless. The Titans are unstoppable. We’re all just waiting to be eaten. Nothing more than pathetic livestock.

  • April 15, 2013 at 9:07 amKurisu Vi Britannia

    I would love powers to turn into a Titan.

  • April 15, 2013 at 10:34 pmbastard kurisu vi britannia

    Do not forgot spoiler tag:<

  • April 15, 2013 at 10:36 pmJel

    That armored titan looked like an oversized Iron Man. I was almost expecting Tony Stark to appear. Lol.

    • April 15, 2013 at 11:14 pmJello

      Hahaha I’m glad I wasn’t alone in that impression. I thought so too.

  • April 16, 2013 at 1:59 pmagr0n

    The one thing that kind of shocks me is that a couple of years have passed and the Titan’s have stopped attacking during that time :p

    • April 16, 2013 at 9:24 pmasdfadsf

      They probable have so much food they don’t need to rush…they need to wait patently for the human population remaining to grow back.

      • April 16, 2013 at 9:24 pmasdfadsf

        *probably* and *patiently* lol

  • April 16, 2013 at 10:32 pmTheOrangeOne

    The thing is, I feel they will take the Gecko Ending route like with the first FMA anime, except more extreme. I’m not sure how the heck they will cut so much content to meet their short episode limit while still making it cohort. 90% of this story is ALL about the details, and cutting any part would totally lower the impact and quality that it could give.

  • April 17, 2013 at 1:12 pmNoTitan

    WOW,I wonder how normal human could handle such things.They need something more than Soldiers to defeat the entire Titan.(Well,I haven’t seen nor the Light Novel nor the Scan yet)

  • July 17, 2013 at 10:03 pmkaty

    what if the 250,000 people sent to die from wall maria was only about half of the population in wall maria or less