This week’s episode of Attack on Titan provides a set up for some action to occur in later episodes. While not quite filler, it wasn’t as intense as previous episodes have been. Missed my review of last week’s episode? Read it here!
The Scouts ride off to rescue Eren and Ymir from Bertholdt and Reiner. Their determination drives them on well into the evening. As they prepare for their rescue attempt, Hange tries to procure a horse for her own mission. She wants to head to Conny’s village, where they found the Titan that couldn’t walk.
Meanwhile, in the Titan forest, Reiner, Bertholdt, and Eren are at odds with each other. Still reeling with the feeling of betrayal, Eren also realizes something horrifying. If Bertholdt hadn’t kicked the wall in that day, his mother may still be alive. He feels rage and disgust as he remembers telling Bertholdt, who sat there and pretended to feel sympathy.
While this is happening, Reiner experiences some disassociation from reality. To truly play both parts well, he has a sort of split in his consciousness. As Ymir notices from Bertholdt’s reaction, this is something that happens often. It is Reiner’s way of dealing with both his soldier side, as a human, and his warrior side, as a Titan. Once back in reality, Reiner calls upon Ymir to join them, telling her they both want the same thing: to protect Krista. This thought raises some conflict in Ymir, who is suddenly unsure how she wants to proceed.
This was definitely a set up episode for the rest of the season, but I wouldn’t call it filler. It got the pulp and dialogue out of the way, so the proceeding episodes can focus on the action and plot. It also raised some questions regarding how Reiner and Bertholdt feel about Beast Titan. Ymir asks the two about them, proving she also doesn’t know what his intentions are. The two don’t answer her though, so hopefully we learn about it soon. It would be very interesting to see if there are Titans that are against the Beast, or avoid him.
It will also be interesting to see who has a change of heart: Ymir or Reiner. Both seem set in their ways, but both also care deeply for Krista. Since both their relations with other Titans is unknown, it’s unsure what their ties to the community are. Whereas, we know what their ties to the human community are. This may also cause them both to consider whether they are warriors or soldiers once more.
Next week’s episode is titled “Children”. The Scouts close in on Reiner and Bertholdt, intent on rescuing Eren. Meanwhile, Ymir reflects on past events to come up with a plan for the future.