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Attack On Titan: The Final Season Episode – 78

Two Brothers

And with that said, I think it’s time we officially handed Eren his Oscar. This episode of Attack on Titan: The Final Season was so intense. I’ll probably never fully understand how their hierarchy works, but I won’t be addressing that this time around.

Today’s blog post is going to talk about Reiner and Zeke. I’ve never been able to determine how I feel about either of them, but that ends today. I’m going with these two as they stuck out quite a bit during the episode.

Reiner

Reiner was a character of conflict for me. I hated him with a passion when his true ”identity” and allegiance were revealed. It was a straight up betrayal, and him torturing himself with his guilt wasn’t enough to get me to budge. However, in the first part of Attack on Titan: The Final Season, we finally understand why Reiner is who he is. I learnt the extent of his misery – dude just wanted to call it quits, and he was quite desperate. I felt like I could finally be a little more understanding of him, but that understanding went straight out the door after this episode. If I had to be extreme about it, I’d say I’ve lost any respect I had for Reiner.

The moment he believes he’s fulfilled his mission, he tries to end his life by the now transformed Falco’s hands. He sought comfort in the idea and braced himself for what seemed like an inevitable end. Its the easy way out, I suppose. However, staying consistent to the theme of the episode, we got yet another plot twist – Porco.

Porco

Nobody expected him to come back from Eren’s blows to his head, but the memory he saw of his brother’s feeble attempts to protect him might have fuelled what little strength he had left – to accomplish one last thing. He says he’s better than Reiner afterall, gives his life (and titan form) to Falco. Here’s why I agree with him, based on this one incident alone. All Reiner wanted was a way out, and he didn’t mind subjecting Falco to the same misery he was in. However, Porco’s only intention was to give Falco his life back. Reiner was upset at the missed opportunity, and I was upset I ever felt like I was too harsh on him. But now we know for sure that he’s a coward, so I’m officially team #FuckReiner.

Zeke

Contrary to Reiner, Zeke was someone I had absolutely no idea how to feel about, other than suspicious. On hindsight, it makes total sense that neither him nor Eren truly trusted each other. It should come as no surprise that Zeke lacks any sort of compassion, considering he came up with this terrible ”don’t let them breed!” plan. But I was still shocked regardless. He has no compassion for Falco, who he doesn’t hesitate to pit against Reiner after his transformation. He says ”its a shame like he can’t help it” but the man truly doesn’t care.

Zeke’s Plan

Another thing I wanted to address was the plan he was so insistent on accomplishing. I’ve caught myself thinking many times over the years, that it’d be great if us humans never existed. At the risk of going into an existential crisis, I felt there wasn’t much point to our existence, and all we do is cause a lot of damage than the opposite. While that may be a valid opinion, However, despite feeling this way, I also can’t deny that we still have a right to exist.

Zeke is missing this point entirely, and is obviously forcing his own agenda, because he feels this is right. He’s also possibly so disgusted by his father, that he does genuinely feel Eldians shouldn’t be allowed to exist, but I digress. I’m also not familiar with how the whole ”command Ymir to not do ____” works, but I did wonder why taking away the power to turn into a Titan was not an option. Or rather, turning Eldians into ”ordinary humans“ for lack of a better term. Surely, this might have been a far less cruel option. But I suppose, if it were that simple, we wouldn’t need such a long and heavy story.

I really wanted to talk more about this episode, but unfortunately this week was just not mine. I’ll regain my strength and come back in full swing for the next episode! You can keep track of this series here. Be sure to check out my socials as well!

Until next time,

brainscratch.

2 Comments

  1. Adi Adi

    Nice blog post! I do have some differing opinions that I’d like to bring to light to perhaps sway your mind or engage in a healthy debate over –

    1. Regarding Reiner, I think what’s an important point to note is that a large part of AoT is about characters following the roles they were assigned. The warriors were assigned a mission and they each had their own non-negotiable reasons to commit to the mission. Reiner primarily believed his mission’s success would unite his family, after which he convinced himself he was saving the world once his first desire fell through. When he realized the truth (S2E6), he very clearly admits that he despises his own actions to the point of knowing he’s past the point of redemption and the only way forward is to see his role to the end. I see him as human and don’t think he’s to blame, and the Marleyan army commanders/leaders are – if anyone. Assigning blame in generational conflict is always messy.

    2. Quoting you: “All Reiner wanted was a way out, and he didn’t mind subjecting Falco to the same misery he was in … now we know for sure that he’s a coward” – I think this is an incorrect read of Reiner’s character. Reiner establishes very early that he wants Falco to inherit the armored titan so Gabi does not have to. I believe he always associated giving up his abilities to Falco and the timing seemed perfect – the broken dude seemed to have completed his mission, had the right opportunity to hand over his ability and finally get some much needed rest – remember, Porco hasn’t experienced any of the emotions or experiences Reiner has. Reiner had to live with betraying the people he lived with, spent years together with, helped and laughed with, and then the survivor guilt of being the only warrior to return to Marley alive. The guy developed a split personality and literally had enough of the charades and straight-up told Eren upfront of his and Bert’s identities in S2. Dude really needs a break.

    3. I disagree with your read on Zeke: I believe Zeke does possess compassion, in a definition that varies from ours. His intent is to “save” his race, and he believes the way to do this is to not be born at all. I can empathize with Zeke’s belief in that because this perspective is coming from someone whose childhood was overall a net negative experience, combined with the only real father figure Zeke had (Mr Ksaver) aligning and reinforcing this mindset.

    And as for him not showing enough compassion toward Falco – I think he truly did feel bad in that moment because Falco really is a kind person, and as an older brother to someone, surely Zeke would know how Colt felt in that moment, but Zeke had no choice but to scream. Magath was pointing down a gun at him as they spoke and the battle was at its climax. After wasting all the scouts in the past, acting for years before betraying Marley, making all of those sacrifices, nobody – including Falco – would have what it takes to stop Zeke.

    Wew, I wrote a lot. Anyway, love the blog post overall despite my differences, looking forward to more of your takes!

    • I felt the same way with Reiner, I feel bad for Falco as well and it was the most ‘Oh shit not him’ when Falco was dragged into this whole mess but still the best way to put about Reiner is that he is a human, who just wants to rest at this point and I don’t blame him, it was interesting and even refreshing to see someone see Reiner in a different way in this blog and wow I didn’t realize many people will or had or can empathize with zeke’s ‘it’s better if we don’t exist’ idea, coz as someone new to existential crisis since the past year, it’s kinda comforting to see how people feel about this.And honestly I really don’t get how people in AOT can keep living, life without such misery itself can cause a lot of contemplation and sense of meaninglessness, I genuinely don’t understand where these people find the will to move forward in the circumstances they are in, especially being more in awe with Eren, idk about morals or where I stand with it but my God. This dude is so determined. Respect only.

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