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English: Attack on Titan
Status: Finished Airing
Aired: Apr 7, 2013 to Sep 28, 2013
Producers: Production I.G, FUNimation EntertainmentL, Mainichi Broadcasting, Pony Canyon, Kodansha, Mad Box, Wit Studio, Shingeki no Kyojin Team
Duration: 24 min. per episode
Rating: R - 17+ (violence & profanity)L represents licensing company
Score: 8.801 (scored by 237077 users)
1 indicates a weighted score
2 based on the top anime page.
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Aug 16, 2014
In my opinion, an anime has to have a strong and gripping start. I found a lot of masterpieces in anime but only a few can make a memorable impression from the very first episode. For example, Steins;Gate – a masterpiece that only few call it otherwise – has a very slow and rather unimpressive start and doesn‘t actually show what is yet to come. However, anime that I am going to review had such a strong start that I literally ( no lying ) was sitting in front of my computer with my mouth opened. It’s very well known Attack on Titan or Shingeki no Kyojin.
Though it’s very hard for me to swallow, a lot of people think otherwise and call this show mediocre. But I’m starting to get, that after you have seen 200 days of anime and have been watching it since God knows when, you probably already seen your masterpiece and new stuff have very hard time of impressing you. I, on the other hand, have only watched like three anime before Attack on Titan and I believe that this show is one of the most memorable and emotionally involving for the newcomers. Why? Well keep on reading.
One of the things that immediately got my attention and overall positive outlook is the different show’s setting. Most anime are set in Japan or have a very ‘’Eastern Asia’’ feeling, while Attack on Titan is set in it’s own fantasy world which highly resembles Germany, considering the all the names and landscape. This lets viewers ( or maybe just me ) to enjoy a little different environment.
Attack on Titan is not famous for having a very complicated and complex story. The better word for describing it would be… epic. Or involving. It’s just that type of story that has a very gripping and intense storyline that makes you watch episode after episode. From the very start it was clear that the story is meant to be long and explored and that it will probably have more than one or even two seasons. So I really don’t get when people complain about show’s erratic pacing since it is made of a r c s and it will obviously slow down from time to time and I personally enjoy few relaxing episodes in between the intense story.
Now for the actual storyline. The anime is set in a world overrun by Titans – huge and mindless creatures that eat people, which almost resulted in humanity’s extinction. So the remaining people were forced to build tall walls to hide from the Titans. People lived for hundred years in some sort of false peace till an enormous colossal titan appeared and smashed one of the walls resulting in complete chaos. I believe these few sentences sum up why I started to like this show. In my opinion, it made a very good job depicting how people live under these circumstances and how they react to such tragedies in their lives. We had to witness the main character’s tragic events from the very start and because of this we can easily understand most of the people in this show, since probably most of them experienced the same.
The story focuses mostly on the main character’s lives, showing audience ventures or tragedies they have to endure which, in my opinion, are one of the most epic things I have seen. The show from the get go has some sort of mystery surrounding everything and starts to question – who are these Titans? It has a lot of plot twists and constantly uses immense cliffhangers in the most intense show’s scenes which some people might dislike, though I believe that cliffhangers double the excitement you have watching this show.
Now let’s look at the shows characters. Attack on Titan has three main characters: a boy named Eren Yeager, his step-sister Mikasa Ackerman and their childhood friend Armin Arlert which all share a tragic past. The remaining supporting cast is very very wide with some notable characters that are more liked than the main ( For example, Captain Levi, though that doesn’t apply to me personally. ).
The show’s main character, Eren Yeager, which had a lot negative response, is very brave and hotheaded and that brings some similarities to other well known hotheaded character Naruto. And I really can’t understand the hate. What people fail to see is that both of them had tragic and hard childhood which sort of traumatized them and made both of their personalities very aggressive, sort of. And I, personally, like these kind of characters because the real world rarely has them. Maybe some enjoy main characters being a little toned down but, honestly, I think it only brings more charisma to the show.
What touches other main characters is that the remaining two almost cancels out all of the flaws Eren has. His step-sister is portrayed as one of the most badass people – while also brave but very agile and determined, doing everything with almost perfection. All that is driven by the obligation to protect her step-brother and stay by his side no matter what because of their intertwined past. Their childhood friend, Armin, is almost opposite of the former two: practically a coward but extremely smart and perceptive and always comes up with a solution to a problem. Overall, I would say that the shows main cast and supporting characters are quite likeable and any flaws in them are canceled out by the variety of other characters.
Attack on Titan’s artwork is also a big reason why I liked it. At first, I couldn’t enjoy other shows to full extent because of their ‘’not so awesome’’ artwork, but then I realized that only few anime have exceptionally good artwork, which is also why this show is special to me. The backgrounds and overall animation is absolutely stunning while the characters are drawn extremely beautifully and uniquely, being heavily outlined from the background.
The OST was composed by Hiroyuki Sawano ( also known for composing Kill la Kill’s OST ) and is absolutely breathtaking. The only proper way to describe it would be epic, since epic mostly applies to this show. It is perfectly matching the atmosphere while being most notable during intense action scenes. The Armored Titan theme ( look it up in YouTube, worth your time ) is giving me goosebumps every time I listen to it. And the show’s first opening is probably not even worth mentioning because it is known as one of the best openings in anime, so the only thing to say about it is that I felt like at a funeral when it got replaced.
It really makes me sad when I scroll down the reviews of Attack on Titan and all I see is 5 or lower. To me, Attack on Titan is one of my first anime watched and still favorite, because of the epic impression it left me and it will probably stay special to me for a long time. I would recommend this show for anyone who is looking for a thrilling and ‘’on the edge of your seat’’ experience, but take note that this is heavy dystopian fantasy anime and if you don’t feel an urge for something like that, I would suggest to wait till it comes back.
Thank you to anyone for sticking till the end of my rant. :)
Aug 8, 2014
To start out with the good the show has top notch production values. The animation stays great throughout which especially shines during the completely awesome and often brutal action sequences that are sprinkled throughout the series. A word must also be said that the show also has a very unique art style with heavy outlines around the characters which helps the show pop out without doing anything too distracting.
Despite the oldtimey setting of the show the music often has a somewhat electronic feel to it and while some might be distracted the music really helps set the epic mood and at times can get you pumped for the next fight.
While the story is never too out of the ordinary, the world that Attack on Titan creates is interesting enough that you are guaranteed to stay interested in whats going on.
But everything is not perfect unfortunately.
While there are a plethora of characters in the show that are often very interesting, most of the cast outside of the main 3 protagonists don't really get enough screen time to get very developed. It also doesn't help that some characters will just randomly die before you get attached. While one of Attack on Titan's claim to fame s the fact that they often murder characters you often don't get enough attachment to some who die in order to make their deaths have as much emotional weight as they probably should.
The show also has slight pacing problems as the show goes at a almost breakneck pace in the first few episodes until it suddenly decides to slow down. Luckily by the half way point enough happens to make this less of a problem.
Also while this show certainly tries to be epic it sometimes goes into hilariously over the top territory but not too often.
Even with these problems the show is still a great watch. It is quite brutal though so if you can't stand violence stay out. Also the storyline isn't complete yet and at this point a sequel is very likely which is good since I along with many are interested to see where the story goes and aren't willing to read the manga to find out.
So while it may not be perfect Attack on Titan it seems that it is just too big to ignore and that is why I am happy that it is of a very high quality.
Aug 8, 2014
In the 90s, Dragon Ball Z broke the mainstream walls while Neon Genesis Evangelion opened the doors to the now indispensable late-night anime slots in Japan.
In the 2000s, Fullmetal Alchemist marked the peak of manga-to-anime adaptations while Code Geass & Death Note headed the class of those who introduced the new anti-hero genre.
And now, in 2013, Attack on Titan has shaken the industry once again.
Unless you've been living under a rock for the past 5 months, you should at least know what the story is about, and for the sake of staying spoiler free, I'm not going into details on the plot.
Before I wrote this review, I wrote a different piece moments after watching the first episode stating that Attack on Titan had all the potential to become a landmark anime, knowing very little of how true that statement would turn out to be.
I have watched anime ever since I can remember. I have seen the very best and the worst that this industry has to offer. And I, like most of you, am very familiar with the relationship of manga-anime adaptation, which is the case of Attack on Titan. It is because of such experience and knowledge that I am able to say with so much confidence that Attack on Titan is the best anime series ever produced from any standpoint, at least, in the last decade.
Attack on Titan is such a well-done product that it has all the key strong points we all dream every series could have. By this I mean the story, characters, animation, OST, opening/ending sequences, art, directing, narrative, character development, and, most importantly, the "it" factor. These are all present with "A grade" production values.
First of all, I want to start with the OST. Simply put, Attack on Titan's soundtrack rivals that of Rurouni Kenshin and Evangelion. Period. Don't misunderstand, they are not similar by any means, they are simply equally as masterful. Check on the internet the impressions left by fans about the first soundtrack. And if you still don't believe me, tweet Hideo Kojima (creator of Metal Gear series) and ask his take on it.
The OST is extremely important in this show because it allows you to feel the many epic moments that dwell in this 25 episode marvel. This is where the directing and narrative play a big role. For those of you who have seen Death Note (same director), you will feel an extra feeling of similarity with Attack on Titan, as the show relies heavily on its intense emotional scenes which you most certainly will feel the first 2 minutes of episode #1.
It is in these scenes where the golden cast of characters shine. I cannot stress enough how unique the characters are. You could say they are the cream of the many accolades that Attack on Titan has. I'm still amazed by the quality of voice actors that just seem to just pop out in this show. The voices of so many main characters from hit series come together in Attack on Titan to help provide that epic feeling you start to get once episode #1 ends. Note I emphasize the voice acting because it's part of the anime but, obviously, not of the manga.
Another key strong point is the work and effort put on the OP/ED sequences. If you've come this far in my review then you most likely understand when I say that Openings and Ending sequences are crucial. They provide that extra excitement to the show. It's definitely something not all anime series take seriously. Fortunately, Wit Studio took them seriously, and then came "Guren no Yumiya". The second opening, "Jiyuu no Tsubasa" is outstanding and marvelous in its own way and the second ending, "great escape", fuels that adrenaline rush of excitement you will get after those killing cliffhangers. Having said that, the first OP, "Guren no Yumiya", is simply epic. If there was ever something to describe as epic, it would be this OP. I am certain that as of today, it is the greatest anime opening ever. I'm amazed by the amount of attention it got on the internet and the hundreds of parodies derived from it. It was simply a treat to our eyes. The song. The animation in the opening. The sync between the two. Epic.
You won't be skipping that opening.
In addition, an animation production is never as close to perfection without the animation and art being top class. Now, Attack on Titan has astonishing art, to the point where you are amazed of how far animation has come. The scenes where there is sunlight will leave you speechless. The animation, unlike the other aspects, is where some disagree. The only thing I have to say is I was extremely impressed throughout the whole show until I saw a certain scene in episode #11 where the 3D maneuver gear was used, and I was stunned. I was simply stunned. Then, of course, later episodes also take it to a whole new level, but you're probably gonna be used to that quality of greatness by then.
That's how ridiculously good Attack on Titan is.
Now, like the characters, the story is mostly work of the manga's author. This includes character development, which I believe is the key to the success and extreme popularity of the characters. Also, the story maybe the most original aspect of this series. Nothing you have seen before is in this show. Nothing. Much like EVA, Attack on Titan gives you a world of "dystopia", on-edge, and uncertainty, so full of potential that just when you think you have it figured it out, it turns around and leaves you speechless.
Oh, that will happen to you for the first time in episode #5. Guaranteed.
Finally, even IF all these characteristics of an anime series are top notch, it won't amount to its potential if it doesn't have that "IT" factor. Some series have the "IT" factor without having all of these production values. They tend have 3 or 4 at most. Those become popular because they give out that feeling of "amazing". Gintama, the greatest gag series ever, comes to mind. Its anime doesn't have overwhelming OST, or eye popping animation; it does have A class characters and A class story (among others), but that "IT" factor takes it to another level. Now, imagine having practically everything an anime series has to offer in A class value while also having that "IT" factor. Extremely rare. Eva rare. FMA rare. Attack on Titan is part of that elite group. This is why its popularity rose to highs only few series reach.
This is the first time I have ever written a detailed review of an anime series. I did it because this one deserves it. It's The anime series of my adult era. I can now relate to those anime fans who watched Evangelion almost 20 years ago. They knew they had something special, just like we do now with Attack on Titan.
In conclusion, Attack on Titan is, of course, like MS Gundam, DBZ, EVA, FMA, Geass, and Death Note, not perfect. Like any other piece of greatness it does have its negatives. Having said that, when you add up the good and the bad, you end up with a landmark anime series that is currently shaking the industry with its mesmerizing, sensational, emotional, intense, and inspiring first season. Just imagine the wait and the hype for season 2.
What kind of effect will Attack on Titan have on the anime/manga industry we love? Only time will tell...
In the meantime, this is simply the best anime series in the last 15 years. Enjoy.
Exquisite beyond words.
101/100. read more
May 7, 2014
In this anime there are no heroes! There are not brave men, without fear, that kill all the wicked. Here there are people who are fighting against their own fear and that sometimes they make it and sometimes not. The enemies aren't the giants !Although the anime does not say from where they come from and I won't do spoilers, it's repeated several times that the enemies are the human beings with their fear (who have surrendered to the giants without doing anything, ignoring and accepting to live like cattle) and the walls! But no one notices that because it would be too challenging to make two questions and wondering: "Why the walls ? Shouldn't they be their salvation?" and get an answer.
The fact that many people aren't well characterized, and that physically are not very different from each other isn't a coincidence .. Isayama is putting on the same level all human beings, he is saying that we are all like that guy who shoots himself alone after he surrendered to fear, that we are all as Vernam (who during the attack fled from Trost ), that there is some of us who is better than others, but that we all live under the same fears, and even if we react differently, we act according to substantially the same nature. It still tells us that we might be the protagonists of our life, choosing our destiny, but only if we are ready to go beyond the stereotypes and mindsets that others impose to us, only if only if we work with all our strength. Because living by what others tell us, from what they show us, isn't to live, but survive!
And in addition to all the various points of reflection that SNK has to offer (and there are many, not just those listed ), there is a plot full of twists and turns, the suspense. In short, it is a masterpiece.
Then, if you are used to an anime where the bad guys magically becomes good after a lesson or in which the characters acquire super powers from nothing or from old men who appearing in their minds... Well, ok ...... that ... that's original and profound ........
(Hope my english was not so bad) :) read more
Mar 8, 2014
…people who like epic settings with epic battles.
NOT RECOMMENDED FOR…
…people who lack patience and the ones who expect a war drama that can be taken seriously.
Shingeki No Kyojin is a Shounen Anime with Seinen elements, in which humanity has to defend themselves from giant human-like monsters called Titans. It’s basically a post-apocalyptic scenario à la “Reign of Fire”, just with giants instead of dragons.
The show starts out very well by introducing us to the main characters and the world they inhabit and it does overall a good job in showing the horror the Titans represent. However, even the first few episodes already show signs of the recurring problem of Shingeki, which will be discussed later. The introduction is one of the strongest points of the show and sets up the atmosphere and characters well enough to captivate the viewer.
Another thing that deserves praise is Shingeki’s technical side. Animation and Soundtrack boast with fairly high quality, which helps a lot in creating a grand and epic atmosphere needed for a show like this. Especially the fight scenes are very enjoyable due to the sharp visuals and the extremely epic music that plays during those intense moments. While the designs of the Titans are unintentionally funny at times and while the use of a RPG-like style is also a bit questionable for a show that wants to depict the horrors of war and loss, the technical aspect of Shingeki is overall a plus.
That’s as far as the positives go. The show’s negatives, which are ultimately its crippling flaws, involve the direction of the story, the way the characters are handled and the way the dialogue and exposition is executed. To put it mildly, Shingeki starts out with a lot of potential in its first few episodes, but instead of building upon it, the show decides to dump down all of it for clichéd black and white painting, a contrived story with no direction or goal and a progression that’s as tough as old boots. It could have been a great, fast-paced Action Anime, it could have been an interesting exploration of novices in an environment that’s defined by war and death, hell it even could have been a deconstruction of the Shounen genre as a whole, but it ultimately wasn’t meant to be.
The first recognizable flaw is the absolutely outrageous pacing. Shingeki is slow, very slow, which wouldn’t be too bad if the time had been used to develop the characters and the plot. But all Shingeki really does is repeating the same information over and over and over. The show recaps events of the previous episodes in nearly every episode, but as if that wouldn’t be enough to drag the pacing down, the episode itself is also comprised with flashbacks and exposition the audience already knows because it was explained around five times already. The pacing of the middle 10 to 15 episodes is absolutely atrocious and combined with the already non-progressing plot and the focus on completely forgettable characters, it becomes a chore to watch.
And while we’re talking about plot and characters, the moment these two problems become apparent is the moment even the last person who believed in Shingeki’s potential will just give up and accept Shingeki as a sloppily put together Shounen that doesn't know in which direction it wants to go.
The three main characters themselves are relatively good. They aren’t very original (the vengeful hotheat, the stoic Mary Sue and the whiny but smart friend) but they are relatively well-used nonetheless. The secondary characters on the other hand are a total mess, merely because there isn’t any secondary character which gets developed to the point he or she becomes distinguish or important for the viewer. All those characters come and go before the audience can even learn their name. There suddenly appears a name, like “Gunther died”, and we as the audience can only wonder who of the five characters who look alike is meant. And this is a shame. There are so many people in Shingeki which had a lot of personality in their appearance and character right from the start and I can only wonder why the writers decided to dump them down for replaceable ones that lack any kind of distinguishable feature. Besides maybe some exceptions near the end, none of the deaths have any real impact on the viewer due to a lack of development, which makes all the time spent in which we have to watch the main characters grieve and moan about the fallen ones simply tedious, which again comes down to the problem with the pacing.
But we’re going in circles. Overall, Shingeki No Kyojin is a solid Action Anime with above average visuals and music and an at least interesting take on the genre as a whole due to its setting and concept. But when it comes to the execution, there are just too many shortcomings and downright crucial mistakes to call it a good anime. read more
Feb 19, 2014
In summary, Shingeki no Kyojin is a perfect anime to get somebody who loves action started on anime- I think it is literally the most mainstream anime ever made, and that is definitely not a bad thing. But with this comes downsides- ones not apparent to the viewer at first glance, but looking back on it after watching it around the time it first came out, definitely shine through.
Shingeki no Kyojin starts off with a roar- the first 2 episodes explode right out of the gate with high-octane action that also leaves mystery to draw the viewer in. Who are the titans? What is in the basement? Why is Eren's dad so creepy? All this and more the viewer asks themselves as the end credits roll for episode 2.
Then episode 3 and 4 jump in. It's a training scene for Eren and his friends, and it's dead slow in comparison. But that's ok- it's episodes like this that reinforce character development and get the plot rolling. And soon, the episodes with action will begin again, right? That High-Octane, bloody, gory action we've all been waiting for!
Well, it does. But then shortly after, it grinds back to a halt. Why do I bring up the first 5 episodes out of all things to mention about Shingeki no Kyojin? Because it perfectly frames the pacing of the entire anime. First you're baited with that sweet, bloody action that makes you just stare at the screen in amazement of the beautiful animation and heart-pumping soundtrack, and next thing you know you have to sit through an hour of people arguing over the same issue over and over before going back to the action. This would be fine and acceptable if it actually resulted in plot and character development going somewhere- but rarely this bickering between Armin and Eren result in anything productive.
Actually, Shingeki no Kyojin seems to show perfectly how to pull off the ILLUSION of plot and character development- Eren struggling with his inner demons despite somehow going back to square 1 every 5 episodes, the Basement which has been explicitly mentioned as having "all the answers" being completely forgotten about while the group goes out to hunt titans, and Armin rehashing what we already know to other characters every episode or two. All of this combined create a huge mess that on first glance seems like a deep and interesting story, but only through reflection of a different lens you begin to notice how shallow the pool you're standing in really is. The characters are shallow, the story tries to go somewhere but the characters almost seem to prevent it from moving at all, and at some points the story tries to go to too many places at once, just confusing the viewer until the next trippy action scene kicks in.
I like to compare Shingeki no Kyojin to a Michael Bay film. This also makes it easier to understand what I'm trying to say (and trust me, it's not your fault- I have a hard time expressing what I feel in words sometimes).
Imagine Eren as Shia Labeouf, and Shingeki no Kyojin as a typical summer blockbuster by Michael Bay. Eren zips around the scenes of the movie, fighting bad-guys and pulling off amazing stunts with beautifully rendered graphics and an amazing ost- but then hardcut to Eren getting mad at himself and people around him but not actually advancing the plot for 1/3rd of the movie as the action grinds to a halt. Add some comedic relief (if you want a Bay comparison, the classic transformers out of place masturbation joke fits well) including possibly some potatoes after a traumatic scene and then slap on the illusion of having a deep plot and you have Shingeki no Kyojin. It's a typical summer blockbuster! You go in, watch it, enjoy it, then leave and forget about it! I'm really not saying you're not allowed to enjoy it because it's shallow and noisy, I'm just saying you shouldn't walk in expecting a revolutionary masterpiece of anime- which is what some critics are raising it up to be.
STORY- 4 : The story's foundations are put up well, but the actual progression falls flat as no questions are ever really answered and the plot never seems to want to go in a single direction.
ART- 9 : The art is amazing! There are some worse-off scenes and some animation glitches, but the art is one of the things that makes Shingeki no Kyojin stand out from the crowd. Even though I am not a huge fan of the anime itself, I have a massive poster above my computer of it as we speak.
SOUND- 10 : While the music and sound design is generic at worst, it is composed beautifully and always reinforces the mood set out by the show. I would highly recommend a download of the OST.
CHARACTER- 3 : Easily the worst part of Shingeki no Kyojin. Eren's constant back and forth attitude and behaviour that never goes anywhere, Armin's arguing with people that last an entire episode simply to recap what just happened on screen, Mikasa's constant fight to try and save everyone and pull everything together: it's just all poorly done.
ENJOYMENT- 6 : While watching Shingeki no Kyojin, I certainly enjoyed it- but I wouldn't say I enjoyed it the whole way through. Even while watching it, I noticed a lot of the fighting and arguing was going on too long, and let's not forget the 3-5 episodes of riding on horses. But the scenes that were enjoyable- notably the fight scenes and the pivotal plot twists certainly left a lot to talk about and were enjoyable enough to at least somewhat wipe away two annoying characters yelling at eachother on horses for 30 minutes.
OVERALL- 5: Watch it, get what you get out of it, but don't walk in expecting the next amazing revolutionary anime. Expect a summer blockbuster. read more
Aug 9, 2014
Well, the reason I gave it an 8 was mainly because it was a too simple concept. The story was not really thought out well, don't flame yet, I will explain why. There are many types of stories and maybe one you've heard before is "saving the world", it is very common to have this type of story, while it's very common and maybe boring, some can actually make this a good type of story. I know that it's very hard to come up with a good (uncommon) story, but hey, that is what I think of that. I'm not saying that it's bad or anything, I gave it an 8 after all, but it would've been more interesting if it had a different unique story!
I should maybe warn you that I haven't seen that many anime, given that you can check my list, but the art style of Attack on titan is really different from what I've seen before, and I actually like it. The really visible outlining of the characters, the amazing background (non-moving environment), and also to point out the pupils of the characters, really detailed.
I can say a lot of things about the sound, not only was the first introduction song (Guren no Yumiya) catchy but the OST of the anime are really good. It's good in a way how they could fit the sounds together with what was happening, they could really get the most out of the music and gave you different kinds of emotions. Watching some scenes would get me goose bumps, and some scenes would also make me cry, for me that is a 10 when I could live into the anime and get the same emotions as the characters. Some scenes would make me really excited. I would say good job in combining the two attributes.
I really like the characters, their different personalities and their appearance. After watching a couple of episodes I got fond to some of the characters, and would watch and see what they end up doing in the series and how they live their life. You get a favorite character and some you might even relate to (personality that is). (In case you wanted to know, my favorite is Sasha Blouse). Some characters you might hate and some you might not even care for, and that is really good, that means they have succeeded in making each character unique.
Yes, as you might already have figured out, I really enjoyed this series, I was caught from the beginning. I really enjoyed watching and getting different types of emotions, wanting to know more about what was going to happen next. I really like how they managed to separate emotions, meaning that they have a scene for comedy and another separate scene for seriousness. some anime tends to mix these things, like having a comedy scene in a middle of a serious matter, and for me, that is really annoying. I don't like having comedy in the middle of a fight for example, that is just me I guess.
So to sum this up, I was what you could say skeptic at first but after the first episode, I got caught in the wave, after that first episode, I just wanted to know more and couldn't get enough and for every episode, I wanted to follow my favorite character and see how she would end up. I cried, laughed, got angry, got sad, throughout the journey. At the end I was so curious that I started reading the manga, but it's not the same as the anime, you don't get the same emotions since you don't have the music, the voice actors and THEIR emotions, so I will probably wait until the next season and cry and laugh again! read more
Jul 21, 2014
What I've noticed is that people tend to be very split about this anime; you either love it, or you hate it. Clearly, in my case, I love this entire series (the show, the manga, the side-stories, etc.) Now onto the actual review.
At its core, Shingeki no Kyojin is something that we have seen many times in the past: humanity is being attacked, therefore we must defend ourselves. Many, many iconic shows start from this format. However, SNK (as I will be calling it for the rest of the review) takes this simple plot point and expands it into something very, very unique. We have the Titans: giant, humanoid creatures set on devouring humans. Because of the Titans, humanity has been driven behind three walls, with the population dwindling to less than 1% of our current population.
Each and every single plot point in this series is completely thought out and executed stunningly. There are so many twists that you won't be able to see coming. Hell, check out episode 8- you'll be shocked. Even the filler is thought out, and has important significance to the main story. The story of SNK goes even further in the manga. At the time of writing this review, there has been 59 chapters released, and we are just only starting to scratch the surface of this world.
Like most things out there, SNK does have its flaws. But the flaws are so minuscule that it's very, very hard to notice them. The brilliant storytelling of this series completely blew me away from episode 1, which is why it deserves a near perfect score.
If you have read the SNK manga, you'll know that the art, while it is good, isn't amazing. The anime cleaned up all of the character designs, leaving us with a beautiful result. While there were some minor changes in characters (ex Eren's eye colour, Levi's physique, etc,) the anime designs did stay pretty true to the original material. The designs match the characters' personalities completely, which is something that not a lot of shows can brag about.
And the animation is breathtaking. Every single sky we see, the birds eye views; the scenery in this anime is absolutely stunning. And the animation for the characters and their situations is pretty great, too. To me, this is digital animation to the finest degree. But again, as is the case with most shows, SNK does have some animation flaws. For example, in one episode, the same frame is shown about three times. The characters can also have a case of "far away face", but that is pretty common. Again, these flaws in animation are pretty small, and are barely noticeable when you are watching the show. They do not take away from the rest of the show.
The score for SNK was done by Hiroyuki Sawano. If you don't recognize his name, he also composed the score for things like Kill la Kill, Ao no Exorcist, and more recently Aldnoah.Zero. If I could use any one word to describe the sound of SNK, it would be flawless. The score matches every scene perfectly, mixing electronics with more orchestral pieces. If you don't have any interest in watching the show, I would still suggest you download the OSTs. The sound for this show blew me away. Even the background noises, the additional sound FX- they were all done to the utmost perfection.
The openings and endings for SNK were all absolutely amazing. It's no wonder that Guren no Yumiya in particular has landed on many "top 10 anime openings" lists. The songs will get stuck in your head, and refuse to leave. In my case, they have not left in a year, and that's something that is very hard to do in my case. Just check out the OPs and EDs online; you'll be amazed at how great they are.
And the voice acting is nothing to laugh at, either. With many shows that I've seen, I've noticed that the voices don't match with the characters. Either the voice is too weak, too bold, meek, etc- this is not the case with SNK. Each character is voiced perfectly; each voice matches the personality of the character. The passion put into the voice acting of the show is nothing to laugh at. The voice actors were able to portray each and every line and emotion perfectly, which is something very hard to do. The dub is a different story (but we don't talk about the dub....)
This is where most people decided whether they love or hate this show. To be fair, the characters in SNK can sometimes seem a little extreme with their personalities. However, I love them. For example, the main character Eren can seem very angry, very passionate. Some people hate this. They think he's just a trope amped up to the extreme. In my opinion, Eren's character was done perfectly. His "extreme" emotions fit his personality up to a T.
The personalities of each character in this show are fleshed out near perfectly, in my opinion. Again, some aspects can seem extreme, but that is part of the enjoyment of this series. Not one character is deemed as "perfect." They each have their flaws, which makes them seem very human and realistic. As the story goes on, each point in each characters' personality is explained in detail, even if it seems unimportant initially.
Each character in this series serves a purpose. The main characters, the main supporting characters, the regular supporting characters- each and every one of them is important. There is a lot of death in this show, but every single death we see is important to the story and the character development. And while some deaths may seem insignificant, they really aren't. The entire emotional journey of this series stems from the characters, and SNK has pretty powerful ones.
I'm not a fan of blood and gore. Really, I'm not. There have been several shows, live-action or animated, that I have had to drop because of their content. When a show like SNK, which has copious amounts of both blood and gore, can become one of my favourites, you know that it is amazing.
Every single episode of SNK had me captivated. Even the filler ones. Each and every episode was an emotional journey from start to finish. Waiting for the episodes to air every week was torture, because I so desperately wanted to see everything happen (even if I had already read the manga.) I loved every single episode, even the OVAs that have been released. Each release had me on edge, with both the show and the manga. Nothing was dull; everything was riveting.
There is a reason why this show doesn't score perfect. It has its flaws, as everything does. But there is also a reason why it scores so high.
Shingeki no Kyojin was one of the most popular, if not the MOST popular anime of 2013. There is a reason for this. There is a reason why so many people watch, read, and enjoy this series, even if they're not into anime or manga. There is a reason why there are copious amounts of fan works for this series. There is a reason why so much merchandise has been released. There is a reason why so many people cosplay characters from this series.
Like it or hate it, you really can't deny how popular it is. I personally love everything about it. Keep in mind that this is only my opinion; other people will tell you different things. But to me, Shingeki no Kyojin is stunning. read more
Jul 18, 2014
Shingeki no Kyojin (Attack on Titan, or literally "Advancing Titans") is like a very specialized main dish. Although it is known that the style and type cover the biggest part of the community, it still doesn’t go with the everyday flow. What I’m focusing on is that these series are an action shounen. Nowadays, many people tend to connect that with some sort of superpowers, laser armory, railgun fire, or anything of the sort. Well, although it is a fantasy, these series want to bring us into a tad more realistic war situation with an overpowering predator, as it would be back in the near past. Furthermore, they succeed at doing just that.
Starting off with the story. The premise and set-up are excellent. The main focus of the two is survival, which is presented in a “man vs predator” way. With humanity being pushed behind the three great walls, as well as the biggest percentage of the land being in the predator’s possession, we’ve got the tension and the rat’n’mouse setting covered already. Since that’s filled, there are only two focuses that have to be done well and connect to the premise in order to achieve (the uneasy achievable) success: the goal and the execution. The goal is in the hands and minds of the characters, so we will get to that later. The execution, on the other hand, is great. Through the story, we are basically presented to the actions the humanity takes in order to achieve victory. Grabbing and squeezing every opportunity they get, they want to maximize the chance of (possible) success.
However, it is not like everyone thinks or feels the same, right? Since that’s the case, the people inside the walls are split into two main groups: the civilians (farmers, traders, citizens, and so on) and the force (three military legions - Military Police Brigade, Garrison, and Survey Corps). Still, this is an action shounen, so we wouldn’t want to see some boring life of a random citizen, right? Nah, that would fit more into some sort of a slice of life drama, or whatever. No, no, we follow the force and their actions. We follow the ones that are hungry for action. For change. Even for revenge. Vegnance. Retaliation. Who is doing all that? Our main characters.
We have the pyramid system of the main characters. That means that there is one main protagonist, followed by 1-3 protagonists in the matter of importance, who are followed by even more protagonists of some specific level of importance. The level of importance is decreasing the more main characters we are presented to. On the top, we have Eren Yeager (or Hunter, as roughly translated from the German language). He is the revenge-tirsty spotlight of the series. From time to time stupid, rash, emotional, as well as dedicated to fulfill what he feels like he must, regardless of the cost it takes to do so. There have been the most mixed calls regarding him on the matter of liking or disliking him as a character. Well, here’s the deal. He indeed might end up unpleasant to some, but I can guarantee that all the other characters we encounter are far from that. We get to love them, and it’s one of those times when the quantity wins over quality of an individual with a strong role.
Next to him are his hot, strong and simply badass adopted sister, Mikasa, as well as a weak, but intelligent and smart best friend, Armin. Before we move on, yes, Armin is a boy and yes, Mikasa is simply the best. Next to the strongest 3D Maneuver Gear user which the humanity uses in order to fight the overpowering Titans, Commander Levi, Mikasa is the badass of the series. Her speciality? Cutting flesh. Her weakness? Pretty much nothing in battle, and I don’t think we could call that shy moe-ness a weakness in any way whatsoever, either! She is a quickly lovable character, and after a shocking moment that occured in episodes 7-8, many were hoping that she would overtake the role of the main protagonist. Well, that doesn’t happen. Regardless, she is the gold and platinum of the series, no questions there. Armin doesn’t have a role as strong as Mikasa’s, but he is still considered as one of the main trio. Although he might seem like a coward, or an annoying and useless person as well, the story needs such a guy in order to emphasize the greatness of other leads. All in all, he does his part just fine.
There are many other characters as well, which we get to sympathize with. Most are filled with fear of not knowing what’s going to happen tomorrow, which is shown beautifully. Among them, there are many diffent types. Quirky, lazy, lax, hasty, serious, quiet, psycho, commanding, rash, and so on. Some are really 2-dimensional, while some are really deep. Some are much deeper or are at least kept in darkness for the sake of the story, and later reaviling some great plot twists and turn arounds, keeping us on our toes on every corner. All in all, the characters are far from being mainstream. With the serious atmosphere around, you don’t see some fake, plastic, or tsundere faces around. You see something far more detailed in a tad if-it-would-happen realistic way. Yes, for a change, you get to like those pixels in front of you, not despise them with a passion.
I promised to explain the goal of the series when I would come to the topic of the main characters. The producers are well aware of who the planned audience is. Although not as flashy and glittery, we are presented to a heroic tale that’s unfolding. A main character. A strong power. A focused dedication. A weaker hero vs stronger enemy. We’ve got everything set. Now, let the sweeping bloodbath begin. Alongside with the other main characters, the goal of these series is to get us root for our main protagonist to break, demolish and simply destroy as many enemies, on as brutal way as possible. That’s even peaked up in the end where Eren switches his famous line of exterminating all of the Titans into brutally killing them. You like being shown to an intense atmosphere between the characters, just to see them own the enemy in the end with style? You’ll love them, in that case. Heck, that’s more than half of the job done for you loving the series as a whole, if that’s indeed the case.
So, we’ve got a grand, powerful, and quite specialized story, alongside with some splendid and lovable characters. What more can come? Well, the art/animation and the sound (of course). The animation is sharp. That would be in a positive way. It brings the mood of wanting to see some badass scenes and more agressivity. In detail, it does so by including quite a few harsh colors, as well as having the edges sharp, beaked, and a tad blurry. That itself kills the possible effect of chillness, as it adds extra energy to the happening around. From time to time, it includes some nice color mixing, most likely done on purpose to have the one watching keep an eye on that specific part of the screen/display. Many times done in order for us to see the entire swift and quick action that has yet to occur, without the need of replaying the scene afterwards. Note that the animation itself is not flashy, so although it brings quite some heavy effect, it does not hurt the eyes.
And then there is the topic of sound. Many times I’ve already complimented them, but allow me to do it yet again. The OSTs (Original Sound Tracks) are simply amazing. If you’re careful and precise, you can see and hear that they hit just in the right moment. When something bigger goes down, there are the powerful OSTs that kick in. When something is learnt, the suspension and intense OSTs start playing. As well as when some major actions are finished, the quiet and lining OSTs take place. Through them all, there are the calm and a tad emotional OSTs that fill in the gaps of hopelessness and cruel situation in which our main characters are in at all times. On short, the sound is wonderful. Masterpieces. Each and every one of them. And when the OSTs aren’t playing? The voice actors come in. In all their glory and beauty. I would not like to go much in depth, but they do their job wonderfully. Power scenes are given powerful voice. The sadness, desperation, true inner happiness, as well as many other situations and presentations, are most of the time voiced spot-on. If you are a type that receives the most info through the sound, then you are quite lucky - these series tend to bring pleasure at that.
Rounding the review up with the enjoyment factor, it is damn high. I won’t lie. I simply love intense action series done right, and Shingeki no Kyojin delivers it. With a lovable cast of characters, the most amazing sound, sharp and harsh animation, as well as an excellent premise, these series do have a round pack of enjoyment ready to be shipped to anyone. If you are up to some action series that aren’t too heavy, but aren’t really light either, then I very much suggest Shingeki no Kyojin. These are some shounen series that are a tad higher in the quality ranking, standing over quite a big part of other series that share the same genre. read more
May 1, 2014
I'm sorry, I really am, but there are fundamental structure and pacing issues with AoT. The basic premise is fascinating—a post-apocalyptic world that was ravaged by an almost biblical plague. All of humanity trapped behind walls that are failing to protect them from the monsters outside—but it's execution is lacking. The world, which appears to be richly structured, is never actually elaborated upon: how did they build the walls? What type of social hierarchy exists as a result of the wall? It spends about three episodes on a single battle and then rushes through the training: we go through 5 years in a matter of 3 episodes and then spend another three episodes on what is about a 4 hour period.
There are also some bizarre story telling choices: [SPOILERS] the protagonist is dead for two whole episodes and in that time they decide it's the best moment to do a flashback to a different character's childhood, while we're still in the middle of a battle sequence. I don't care about her childhood and relationship with the main character: all of the characters are currently in mortal danger and the main character is dead. This is simply not the time. [END SPOILER] There are also general pacing issues: it feels slow, yet we aren't given time to get to know the characters so when the inevitably die, it's hard to really care.
The episodes also have a flat out depressing emotional arc. They start with a smidgen of hope that is just continually stomped down until the end of the episode. I'm sorry, but I like my characters to have a win at least SOME of the time.
There is also something lacking in the Titans as enemies. They aren't smart, quick, or focused. Watching battle sequences with them is like watching a bunch of flies swarm around someones head. It's just not very interesting.
The art is outstanding. No ifs, ands, or buts about it. It's gorgeous. The backgrounds are rich, the motion is fluid, and the characters just look good. There is CG, but it's well integrated, and the colors are appealing and appropriate. The only caveat I might have is that it's sometimes a little hard to tell characters apart (but when there as many of them as there in AoT, it's inevitably difficult).
The soundtrack is appropriate and distinctive, the voice acting is strong, and the sound effects don't sound unnatural. I only knocked a point off because the opening theme is sometimes a bit much (I was skipping it by episode 3).
Eren is just not a very engaging protagonist. He's a jerk from the moment we meet him, and it feels like he's a jerk for no good reason. He then "redeems" himself by deciding to commit his life to a suicidal pursuit of revenge. I found it's tough to appreciate his character, though I did enjoy his inspirational qualities and his defiance of the hopeless state of humanity.
The side character come off as rather flat. They almost all fit into stereotypes that have predictable story lines. I do enjoy Jean, though, and I would be curious to see if he becomes the essential ally to Eren that I suspect him to be.
It was fun on occasion, but overall it was not very enjoyable or challenging.
This is definitely a good series—and for those who enjoy dark, battle driven series, particularly fantasy, I highly suggest it (though I warn that I loved Code Geass, another dark, battle driven series, but disliked this). I hesitate, however to call it great. read more
May 24, 2014
Let me get one thing straight though, this show is an excellent gateway for people trying to get into anime. If you know someone who wants to get started then this is perfect.
Right so the story and setting are as follows. In a world that resembles medieval Europe with little sprinkles of Steam Punk throughout, humanity has been forced to seclude itself in regions surrounded by heavily fortified and immense walls up to 50 meters high. Why you ask? To protect themselves from the Titans, giant docile humanoids that simply eat all humans they encounter and no one knows why. These Titans range in classes of sizes with some being only 5 meters tall to the special types like the Colossal Titan who himself reaches up to 60 meters.
So one average day where no trouble could possibly arrive from, the Colossal Titan and his friends the "Armored Titan" and the rest of the titan gang destroy the wall guarding our main protagonist Eren Jaeger's (pronounced "Yaeger") city and basically makes him have a bit of a difficult day to say the least. From here on he and his two friends Armin and Mikasa vow to destroy all Titans while they still live by join the military.
While the story and setting are indeed very intriguing and keep the viewer guessing, they suffer from some pacing issues where something that seems to be important gets disregarded and other events drag on for a bit too long in my opinion. I watched the show as it aired and the animation studio behind it "Studio Wit" did a great job and ended each episode with a cliffhanger making the week between each episode a tense and one that could not go any faster. However, there were some times where these cliffhangers felt rather cheap as the next episode would quickly wrap up the issue within the first minute or so.
I have to give props to the manga writer Hamjime Isayama for creating such a fresh setting that really pulls away from traditional fantasy. The 3D maneuver gear which the military use to fight titans are awesome gadgets that provide some of the best scenes in the show. Also the constant oppressive feeling that Attack on Titan delivers really succeeds in making you anxious about the future for this show. Hope always seems to cave in on itself.
My main issue with Shingeki no Kyojin is its characters. Going on the internet one will see that many fans of the show compare it to "Game of Thrones" for the show's ruthlessness regarding character deaths. This is true and in my opinion is meant to commended, however for that to be effective, one needs to care about the people dying. In all honesty I couldn't give a damn about the characters in this show, none are in any way interesting or go outside the common stereotypes found in anime.
In the 25 or so episodes of the show, the characters and their motives don't change since the first 2. Even the three main characters can be summed in one sentence by the end of the show. Eren is pissed off and hates Titans cause they killed someone precious to him. Mikasa is obviously in love with Eren and wants to protect him. Finally Armin is a guy too scared to fight first hand but has excellent strategic plans.
The other side characters are barely worth a mention, even Levi who all the fans seem to fantasize over for being "badass" is just a sadistic douche. Admittedly he does demonstrate some serious ass whooping skill in the show, and that I have to give credit for.
Without naming anyone, a person dies fairly early on in the show and every other character kept going on about how they miss them and they shouldn't have died. Truth be told, I didn't even know who the hell they were till much later in the anime.
I sincerely hope season 2 of Attack on Titan develops these characters more.
Okay so enough hating on AoT for now, lets talk about the positives. Well for one, the art and animation. Studio Wit are a brand new studio whose first production is this show. I can only say that they must be comprised of artistic gods! The animation here is seriously the best I have ever seen in any anime. Many people complained about still shots being used during episode downtime particularly early in the show but Wit make up for it by delivering some of the most spectacular action scenes I have witnessed. There is something truly jaw dropping about seeing people zip around cityscapes in their 3D Maneuver Gear. I cannot compliment the animation and art in this anime enough.
The music is also excellent. Composer Hiroyuki Sawano (also composed the soundtrack fro Kill la Kill) does an incredible job of emphasizing the setting with sombre and slow melodies accompanied by a some beautiful german singing to elevate the darker scenes in the show. Some pumping electronic sounds mixed with grand and epic choirs also get the hairs on your back standing for the more action heavy scenes.
All in all Shingeki no Kyojin is well worth your watch. While I don't think the characters will find their own space in your heart (not with Eren's constant whining), I do believe you will have a great time with this show, especially is you are a lover of action. I myself am incredibly excited for season 2 and severely hope that they fix up some issues with the plot and characters then.
If you are going to watch, avoid the manga spoilers like the plague!
Thank you for your time. read more
Mar 21, 2014
This is a spoiler free review.
*Insert synopsis here*
Aside from the monsters being replaced with Titans and the interesting weaponry the people have, we've definitely seen similar stories in anime before, whether it's Claymore, Blue Gender and maybe even Highschool of the Dead.
Leaving that aside though, it doesn't do a very good job with its narrative. The story relies on coincidences, has forced exposition, uneventful pacing and it also has unexplored themes that are tossed away as soon as they're raised.
The setting in general is poorly explored. For example, they make it clear that there's a slave trade going on within these walls, but that issue is never raised again. Apparently they also have religious sects that worship these walls as deities or something, but that's never explored either, aside from killing them off in an ironic and disrespectful manner (hah! that'll teach those religious people for having faith and hope!). There are even social classes among citizens, and of course, the higher the class, the more evil you are (that's how it works in cliché land), but even that is just there to show us what good people the main characters are by comparison.. They also present corruption within the military and competition amongst its different branches. Granted, the latter is explored a little, but the former is hardly touched and is just there to shock you. So despite how rich the setting seems at first, at the end of the day all you will care for is the fight against the titans since the rest just remains background decoration.
It's a common thing to say that the first episode is Amazing, but I wasn't impressed. To me, the first episode is also the first mistake it made. It seemed deliberately rushed in an attempt to make the audience gasp at the sudden deaths of characters we know nothing about (pure shock effect).
This is the first mistake because the pacing does slow down significantly later on and I think the first episode was the only one worthy of getting fleshed out more, instead of diving in to the massacre straight away. The rest of the episodes don't even exploit most of their slow pacing very well. It has a habit of slowing down deliberately in order to end most episodes on a cliffhanger. Sure, it might raise the tension, but it also serves to make the series less eventful inside its already limited number of episodes (which means less of a story).
And maybe I'm just nitpicking here, but the exposition insults me. It assumes I'm a retard who can't put 2 and 2 together and the characters have to go out of their way to explain things about their world that they should already know just by being born there. This show could've had no dialogue whatsoever and I still could've picked up on a great deal of what's going on. So the script just comes off as amaturish.
And like I said, the story also relies on occurrences that are not very likely, but because it involves the main characters, anything is possible. It's nothing that bad or distracting, but I'm still gonna go on a limb here and say; that's not good storytelling.
Lastly, it just ends in the middle of nowhere and leaves you with nothing but another cliffhanger (surprise, surprise).
To be fair though, the setting is still pretty creative (as unexplored as it is) and it does do a decent job in foreshadowing some interesting plot twists and gradually revealing mysteries, mainly about the Titans. But that's pretty much it and even that is incomplete for now.
These are tired shonen characters who are completely out of place.
You have a Mary Sue who's super strong for no good reason, the smart one and mr angry pants.
Granted, Eren, the angry one has good reasons to be angry, it's completely understandable. Unfortunately, that's pretty much all he is and it's probably not the best idea to have him as a main character since it gets old really fast.
You also have Mikasa who's an absolute perfect being for some reason (I gave up on questioning it). We can't make her flawed of course since that'd mean she'll have room for character depth, we can't have that. And there's simply nothing to remember her for besides her relationship with Eren, being perfect and her sexy lips. So yeah, a lame character with no development and the most ludicrous backstory I've seen in a while, which also happens to be Eren's backstory. Which explains why she's his pet.
The third character is Armin, the weak but smart one. I guess he's ok, since he does seem to grow more than the other two.. Aside from that he's forgettable as well since this show's characterization in general is very shonenish and obnoxious in an otherwise dark setting. "The power of friendship!" (ok, they don't actually say that, but they come pretty close).
By the way, these 3 characters are each supposed to complete each other with their traits, which is a nice idea, but that fact is stated directly to the viewer, much like everything else in this series (so much for subtlety).
There's also another notable character named Jean, who's kinda like the Vegeta or the rival in a shonen series. And much like Vegeta, he's the only one who goes through actual growth and he even reacts to the events in a way that resembles a human being. Too bad he wasn't the main character, he suits the grim setting much better than the others.
The secondary characters are defined mainly by their quirks or their looks and there are others who are just evil for the sake of being hated by the audience and aren't shown more than once (manipulation much?). Many secondary characters aren't fleshed out and the vast majority of deaths in this series are of nameless characters or ones you don't remember. It's understandable considering the circumstances, but that just makes the main cast appear more plot armored than they already are.
On the other hand, the characterization of common people during the intense moments is pretty decent. Probably a little over the top at times, but I still think it was handled rather well with how they panic and such.
Overall the characters could've been worse, I mean at least they have character consistency, they are given some focus and I should probably applaud them for not being overly sexualized, which is a very rare thing in anime these days. But I have no clue what people see in them since most of them are pretty simple and feel ridiculously out of place.
*Art & Sound*
I'll cover this part more briefly.
The character designs are kind of unique, I guess. I actually like the thick outlines the artwork has, you really don't see those much anymore. The surroundings look beautiful, both the forests and the towns. Everything just seems gigantic. The animation itself (while not always consistent) is great and the battles with the 3d camera movement is one of the most amazing things I've ever seen. Though I wasn't too thrilled about most of the Titan designs, and some are significantly cooler than others.
The opening song is arguably one of the best openings in recent years, it's just masterful (too bad opening 2 happened midway). Same goes for the soundtrack in general which is beautifully intense and makes everything seem more epic. The voice acting is nothing special and maybe even over the top, but I realize that the script probably told them to scream a lot, which is not always easy to pull off so give them some slack.
I enjoyed some of it, but from a point on I mainly just watched it apathetically. I do concede that it's not a boring watch, that's for sure.
I've been mostly negative in this review, but I'm giving it a fair score since it was still fine, or at least passable in some respects and the production values are pretty amazing as well.
But leaving the whole "reviewer" thing aside: personally, I don't like it very much, I find it soulless and I don't think it will stand the test of time.
That's just purely my own opinion, obviously. read more
Jan 31, 2014
The suspense is incredible and exciting with constant gory scenes of titans brutalizing humans to the fullest degree, whether it is crushing skulls with their massive thumbs or tearing apart the human body. Combat action involves stunning choreography as armed soldiers spin or fly in mid-air with their 3D maneuver gear before striking lethal blows to titans. Certain circumstances cannot be predicted accurately as SnK shows no hesitation in killing off supporting characters. The majority of the episodes end in surprising and unexpected twists as soldiers fight to save humanity by risking their lives to accomplish one goal: destroy all of the titans. The pacing is steady, allowing viewers to understand the plot and characters with extreme detail. However, the primary objective is too complex to complete in 25 episodes. A cliffhanger ceases the opportunity for more exploration of the titans and other characters.
Tip: In the middle of each episode is a helpful “Info We Can Share So Far” section. It lasts for less than 20 seconds, so it’s advised to pause and read the info. Most of them are hidden data that are not quoted by characters in the series, including history of the titans and info about the communities.
The majority of the characters, including the MCs, have motives behind their actions, and they develop and strengthen after experiencing tragic events. For example, Mikasa’s sole purpose of protecting Eren throughout the series has more to do than just her personal feelings for him. Eren is the main protagonist and has a strong passion to destroy every single titan. He was intolerably whiny and irresponsible in the beginning but slightly matured halfway through the series due to interactions with experienced squad members. He gains common sense and looks at situations from different angles. However, he does not fully develop as his old ways sometimes reappear.
Mikasa and Armin may appear clingy to Eren at times, but the trio spend much time apart with other characters, primarily during the second half. Mikasa is the strong female heroine who is a master in combat action. She’s fearless and presents a major attraction with her swift moves of killing multiple titans in one blow. Armin showed great improvement in his character. He starts out as a coward but becomes willing to strategize despite his fear. He is also quite the genius and contributes to resolving various mysteries of the titans. Along with Armin, there are many characters who present or develop great charismatic skills.
The large number of squad members have personalities ranging from indifferent to determined, and they all distinguish with their levels of combat ability and leadership. Some of their attitudes can be hilarious, depending on one’s sense of humor. The anime goes into the past of some of the important characters and highlight relationships between them. It helps the viewer understand the characters and develop a love/hate relationship with them. The only downside is the inability to explore other important characters before the finale.
Production I.G. and Wit Studio did a fantastic job with the animation. The thick outlines displays details within the background and character design. The artwork emphasizes excellent visual effects of combat action and characters maneuvering between buildings, trees, and other landscapes. All of the settings from the cityscape to the forest are remarkable. Character designs are distinct, and the unisex military uniforms reveal great details, thanks to the outlines. Characters’ fear and other emotions are generally shown with black lines drawn on their faces, contributing to the horrifying theme of SnK. The black lines symbolize distress, anger, frustration, etc. Bloody scenes of titans crushing and eating human bodies fulfill in making those primary creatures look terrifying. Titans are drawn as ugly and naked overgrown human beings. Some are shown to be skinless, and the vast majority are the opposite.
There are a few problems with the art. There's no distinction in gender between the titans. It was not an issue in the beginning, but it later becomes something important to note in the series. Another poor part about the animation are the stills. There are some scenes that are at a standstill with the characters talking like an idle page in a storybook. Other times, there would be fixed scenes with only one or two objects striking attention with movement.
The voice actors adjusted to the characters’ personality, making their emotions and identities suitable for the fearful and serious atmosphere. The stomps and groans of titans presents practicality to the anime’s theme, considering the type of monsters Hajime decided to create. The music from the theme songs to the background is memorable. Background music includes warrior-like songs and sometimes fast-paced or choral music during fights. The entire soundtrack adds a grand quality to the series.
Enjoyment (9) / Overall (8)
SnK is one of my favorite action anime, even after re-watching it a few times. In addition to the cliffhanger, I found Eren to be really annoying. There was a scene where Eren hurt Mikasa physically, and I hated him for intentionally harming a lady. SnK’s focus on other characters and increased suspense made it much better. The characters' behavior were humorous at times, and there was always something to look forward to after each episode. As a result, I experienced laughter and shock throughout the series. Due to its popularity, I’m looking forward to a 2nd season and reading the manga in the meantime.
Overall, SnK has entertaining combat action, surprising events, and remarkable visuals. It provides details throughout the series to keep the viewer current on events, and it gives quite a bit of attention to the characters. Apart from its incomplete ending, I highly recommend any fan of action anime to become familiar with the SnK franchise. read more
Aug 9, 2014
Nov 29, 2013
Attack on Titan has an absolutely astounding setting. The sheer idea behind the setting, the exposition pieces, and the initial plot elements held the potential for it to be one of the best action anime ever. From the first three episodes, I could see how someone could believe this would be that one anime that is just absolutely amazing. It simply becomes disappointing as things continue. Long story short? The start is absolutely amazing. It's powerful. It's grabbing. It does everything an introduction should do. The problem after that stems from the plot slowly becoming painfully predictable and a personal dissatisfaction with the protagonists in place as well as the decisions of various members of the cast completely destroying the story's credibility at times.
Art is completely subjective. I would not actually judge art based on someone's own opinion. You would really have to see it for yourself to deem whether it is "good" or not. As for me, it seemed fairly mediocre. The effort is there, but something with the art style simply does not jive with me. The settings are well done, but the characters are quite bland.
Finally. This is what I can praise Attack on Titan for. If anything, this series's soundtrack deserves to be remembered. It is excellent and its execution throughout the anime was not only strategic but tasteful. The tracks range from dark and depressing to powerful and moving pieces designed for a battle against a completely hopeless situation. In my opinion, the music in and of itself is the true beauty behind this anime.
The main protagonist Eren Jeager is heavily set on his goal to a fault. Some call this good writing, but given the setting, it actually works against the story and its credibility. It is literally almost difficult to not find the main character's obsession with revenge nostalgic and downright hilarious. If you don't like avenger-type characters, you will despise Eren beyond imagination by the time the story is over. The worst part? He finally starts developing three-quarters through and goes right back to the bratty child he was in the first few eps. The same can be said of Mikasa. This anime is one of the few to portray women with some form of decency, but Mikasa's obsession with Eren is a pretty sad window of how the author wants people to worship his poorly-designed protagonist. To boot, Mikasa literally has no flaws other than her obsession with Eren. No character flaws. No ability flaws. Her only real flaw is her obsession with Eren, which usually only winds up helping them, not causing them problems like it should. Your only real likable protagonist? Armin. He is one of maybe three characters we really see that has a solid character, solid flaws, and solid development based on those flaws and his interactions with other characters due to the plot. In all honesty, Armin should have been the main protagonist.
Now we move onto enjoyment. Despite vehemently despising roughly eighty-five percent of the cast, I enjoyed Attack on Titan. Is it a great action anime? Sure. Definitely! Is it realistic? Sad to say, but no it is not. Is it the most well-written anime ever? Astronomically far from it. If you're looking for an action anime to sit down and enjoy, this is a wonderful choice. If you're looking for an action anime with a strong plot and emphasis on lovable characters, I recommend pretending that you never heard the hype and staying far away from this anime.
With a heavy heart, I cannot give the anime anything higher than a 5/10 in good conscience. It had oodles of potential, but an irritating cast, some half-baked plot elements, and predictability ruined it. Mediocre at best. read more
Jul 14, 2014
Also, despite the fact that the characters are highly developed, I personally found it hard to care that much about them since most of them end up dying rather quickly, making all that development pretty much pointless. This also made me feel rather uninspired whenever a character gave some inspirational speech or rallying cry because even when they do that, they end up getting slaughtered.
Lastly, the excessive amount of emotional scenes took away a lot of their intended effect. I found myself thinking "yes, yes, we get it, can we move on now?" whenever these drawn out emotional scenes appeared simply because there were too many of them and they really desensitized me to the very real emotions that were present.
With those things in mind, I will admit that the artwork of AOT is incredible, using a unique style and taking full advantage of certain elements present within AOT's unique world to create some very powerful scenes. Also, although the characters feel a little disposable to me, The characters are still very well developed and relatable.
So it ultimately comes down to what your looking for in an anime. If your looking for a good, full story, i would recommend you pass. But if your more into artwork and character, then you definitely need to watch it.
Jul 8, 2014
Starting off with the story. I find this right here to be half and half. As far as the background and history shown, and the world that was created I think it's really good. I liked the idea of humanity living behind walls, drove to near extinction, finding the overall story of the world to be pretty original in anime. However, on the other side, as far as the actual, episode to episode, overall story of the season... I find it to be very lackluster. The show forces shock value down your throat, showing mass death almost every episode, to the point where it seems like the makers don't know how to tell the story without throwing genocide or murders in every other episode. Aside from the forced shock value; there is barely anything worthwhile that happens in the story for the first season. Not to mention most of the season is composed of two 8+ episode arcs, which are very drawn out. I could go into much deeper reasons, but don't want to spoil anything.
The art style and sound are both pretty decent. I find the art style pretty unique, although when it comes to the sound, aside from the first opening of the series I find the remaining themes pretty generic. The first opening does pump you up and in my opinion blinds people into thinking the show is going to be "super epic".
Now for the characters... I am not kidding when I say that the main characters in this series are complete crap. Eren is definitely the most boring main character, compared to a lot of others; I hated Sword Art Online but I thought even Kirito was more interesting than Eren. All Eren does is shout and preach, like he's the center of everything but has barely anything to back that up. And aside from his titan-related trait there's nothing else to him. I find Mikasa an empty character who only lives for Eren, who makes it seem like she can't even think for herself without him there. The only thing she has going for her is bad ass action scenes with her, which delude people into not looking past that and seeing a shallow character. And then there's Armin, who is a complete pussy and useless for the first 7-8 before he slowly starts becoming useful; most of the time he's shown he's either whining or showing how incompetent he is. He does get better down the road, and out of the three characters his is probably the best.
Attack on Titan is apparently hailed as "The Best anime of 2013" and some going as far as saying "The Best Anime Ever!" When in reality, no. A lot of its' fans make it seem like that you have to fall head over heels for it, and act like if you think it's bad then you don't know what good anime is.
Not saying this isn't a bad show, but I find it majorly flawed, and wish that more people would sit down and really think about this show before they praise it like they do. In my honest, serious opinion, I really am concerned about people who claim it to be the best anime of 2013. read more
Jun 12, 2014
Let's start from the story. One hundred years before to the beginning of the story, giant scary humanoid creatures called Titans suddenly appeared and nearly wiped out humanity, devouring them with an unkown reason. What remains of humanity now resides within three enormous walls.
"People are crazy for believing that these walls will protect us forever. Even though the walls have been intact for the past 100 years, there’s nothing that can guarantee they won’t be broken down today…"
The stroyline of Attack on Titan or Shingeki no Kyojin is still clouded in mystery. Tough we have already seen 25 episodes we almost haven't learned anythig about the Titans. They just give us one piece of the puzzle per episode without revealing anything important. The story also questions the moral decisions characters made in the anime which I found very intresting. The story is also filled with amazing fightning sceenes and some veary memorable horror scenes.
Art of this anime is very unique and takes a few episode to get used to, but when you do, you can see the time and emotions spent on it. I personally thinks that it fits perfectly the dark theme of Shingeki no Kyojin and would not change it, tough it is not the best art I have seen it surely is somewhere close.
Soundtracks in the anime are just epic. They really make the atmosphere awsome.
The the first opening is also worth mentioning cause it's surely one of the bests openings ever. It has amazing lyrics and an original melody.
"Without even knowing the name of the flower it had stepped on
The bird that had fallen to the ground, grows tired of waiting for the wind"
First of all. There are many characters, but they are all developted very good and have their own little background and was of thinking. It was very wise choice to put that many different character because they will all react and think differently when facing Titans and you will certainly find a characters that resembles you. The main three characters are childhood friends that share the dream of exploring the world beyond the walls and are very likeable I think.
"We’re going to explore the outside world someday, right? Far beyond these walls, there’s flaming water, land made of ice, and fields of sand spread wide. It’s the world my parents wanted to go to."
I really enjoyed watching and rewatching this anime. I was like: "Just one more episode... Only one more... This is the last for sure..."
The anime grabs you from the reality and puts you into a desprate world where humanity fights for it's very survival.
"If you win, you live. If you lose, you die. If you don’t fight, you can’t win!"
In overall, Shingeki no Kyojin or Attack on Titan, is a great anime with unpredictable storyline, unique and beautiful art, epic soundtracks and many different and developted characters. I would recommend it to anyone who likes either emotional anime, moral thinking, action and blood, fantasy worlds or apocalyptic things. I am looking forward for watching the next part of Shingeki no Kyojin! read more
Jun 29, 2014
The actual story of Shingeki no Kyojin is... well, a lot better than it sounded to me at first. While the idea of mankind being held in check by some alien force is not in any way new, this series handles it extremely well, and really can make you paranoid at times. That is to say, the titans, for the most part, really do feel threatening. Unfortunately, there are some major pacing issues in this anime. Shingeki no Kyojin starts out pretty fast paced, while still giving you adequate information to understand what's going on. That's not easy to do, and it does that very well. However, after the first half of the “first season”, things go downhill. There are some great moments scattered throughout the episodes filling up the middle and latter sections of season one, but there just aren't enough to justify how slow some things seem to get done. Fortunately, this is remedied towards the end of season one with the introduction of a few great characters, and some key story-line points that, actually, make a lot of sense and are well done. However, season two continues this offense by starting out great, ending good, but not having good meat in between point A and point B. The idea is that all humans are confined to one massive city surrounded by three circular walls, with parts of the city in between each wall. This being said, the area of this really can't be that massive, and when, in season 2, they announce what their goal is, it feels pretty easily accomplished. However, in the remaining 10 episodes of the season, they never even get reasonably close to reaching this, and instead are sidetracked, although I will admit that at least the sidetracking is important and relatively well done. If this review is making me sound like I hate the story, I don't. I think it's one of the better stories as well as good story-telling for MOST of it, but there are just some parts that feel extremely rushed or extremely slow, for little to no reason.
Well, here is the single reason I don't like this show that much, and it shows by how many points are being docked. I would be lying if I said there weren't any fantastic characters in Shingeki no Kyojin, because most of the side characters are good, Mikasa Ackerman, one of the three main characters, is fantastic, and everyone's favorite: Captain Levi is also a great character. Unfortunately, this possibly good total cast is absolutely ruined by the main character of the series: Eren Yeager. Now, I have watched a lot of Slice of Life genre anime, and many of those are known for having awful, dense, un-interesting male leads, but Eren Yeager is in his own league. At lesat characters like King Joffrey from Game of Thrones are fun to hate. They are genuinely amazing parts, just evil characters. Eren is not fun to hate. He's annoying, constantly feels like he needs to get angry at everything, and thinks he's just going to do whatever he wants whenever he wants. It's absolutely childish and painful to watch. To make matters worse, the third of the trio of main characters, Armin is also annoying and whiny. Granted, both of these characters get SLIGHTLY better, but I will never be able to think of either of them as anything but annoying bitches unless some serious development goes down. As if all of this isn't enough, the worst part about it all is that the third main character, the female lead is absolutely great, and always goes out of her way to help Eren out of his own messes. And what does she get? Not a SINGLE, not ONE, thank you for the entire 26 episode series. Eren just brushes it off like he's entitled to her and deserves nothing less than to be pampered by his loyal friend. Enough about Eren though, the rest of the characters are pretty good. The aforementioned Mikasa Ackerman is a very good character, as well as Levi, once he's introduced that is. There are other great ones, but none worth mentioning.
Honestly, if I put more of an emphasis on animation quality than character development (which, in my opinion, would be pretty dumb), Shingeki no Kyojin would receive a vastly different score. For every flaw in character quality, the art and sound makes up for it. This series has by far the best soundtrack in anime, and has probably the best animation I have ever seen, even trumping the June 2014 anime that I am currently watching. I cannot say enough good things about the animation quality, sound or art, so I won't, and I'll let you see how awesome it is.
This section is basically whether or not there was a romance that I enjoyed. Sorry if this is a spoiler, but I particularly enjoy watching a romance develop, and I wished that other reviews would tell me if I was going to get to see one.
Shingeki no Kyojin rubs me the wrong way, so take this score with a grain of salt, but I think that the show is incredibly over-rated and needs to get the Sword Art Online treatment a bit. Everything about it is so awesome... except arguably the single most important things such as good pacing, or even bearable characters. If you can get past the main character, Eren Yeager, you will most likely enjoy this show vastly, as that alone would probably add 10 points onto the score.
Deductions in points from the score are my attempt at being as objective as I can, but they will be listed here in case anyone reading this cares more or less about anything I take points away from:
-The story has some minor, but still jarring pacing issues, and there are some parts that don't feel well put together
-Eren Yeager is an atrocious character, and never should have existed let alone as a male lead.
If you have any questions about my review (or want to talk about anything at all, really), feel free to email me at: firstname.lastname@example.org
Jun 8, 2014
Up front, the more time passes between me, having watched the show and now thinking about it, the more average it becomes. I came to the conclusion, that the show severely lacks memorable moments. Many may call BS on me for that, but really think about it. Excluding what happens in Episode eight...I think, there was almost nothing for me to remember fondly. I'll say, that upon first completing the show, I quite liked it and would have even called it good, but that is just not the case anymore.
Most of the things like character-motivation, their development and the pacing just seem quite off. The characters like Eren, Mikasa and Armin are completely one dimensional and void of almost any interesting aspect.
Now I know. It is shounen, what do I even expect? But the straw of thinking too deep into it doesn't work this time, because even when you scratch the surface of these characters, they still seem to be completely uninteresting. There is no concept worth exploring here, no good idea hooking you to the adventure and what is there, is boring after a few episodes.
I try to at least be as objective as possible with these reviews (try to, not succeeding, shut up), but in this case I can't not mention the constant annoyance the main character and his constant angsting about the things that happened in the first episode, is. Jesus Christ, his whole existence revolves around angst. Realistic portrayals of characters do not just use one aspect of them and blatter us over the head with that non-stop. There needs to be at least one high-moment to correlate all of the low moments. If he is in constant angst-mode and always shouting, it becomes meaningless and more of a joke or a running gag, than a conflict or a struggle for the character. And that problem encumbers most characters in this show. Their constant one-note struggles and conflicts ultimately do not mean anything because it is all we ever see of them. Characters, besides the plot are paramount for me, which is why it is almost everything I talk about in this, but it is the main point I want to give you an understanding of, so there you go.
And so people in this show are not remembered for their characterization or their interesting personalities but rather for very stereotypical aspects and their designs, which is very repetitive by the way. It just looks too bland and uninteresting for my taste. They could have at least incorporated a few different uniforms and colors but no, brown it is.
That could very well be the name of the anime, “brown it is-the anime”, but I digress.
What looked like something good in the first eight or so episodes came to a grinding hold in the boulder arc, did not really pick up after that and just left me with a great desire of the story continuing like it did in the first eight episodes and not the way it did. The few twists it threw in were nothing too surprising and pretty easy to figure out, if you at least try to pay minimum attention. The last scene at the end failed completely in hooking me for the next season and that pretty much sums it all up.
It's almost addicting to not care about this anime anymore. Hype didn't last for good reasons. Stuff's painfully mediocre with a tendency to annoy me more than entertaining me.
OP theme still awesome though. read more