Attack on Titan is Back!

Julie-Anne takes a look at the first three episodes of the highly anticipated second season.

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Attack on Titan’s second season was without a doubt one of the most eagerly anticipated titles in the current anime season. Fans had been waiting over four years for the series’ return.

You have probably heard at least a little about Attack on Titan, even if you haven’t watched or read it yourself, but in case you’ve been living under a rock for the past few years, here’s the basics; giant humanoid monsters called Titans terrorise humanity, but for the last hundred years towering walls have kept the remaining populace safe, until one day the Titans manage to break through.

Attack on Titan is dark, gleefully violent, relentless in pace and unforgiving to both its characters and audience. The show is highly disturbing, and yet it’s unique tone and story-line full of interesting revelations and unexpected tragedy has rightfully earned it a large and devoted following.

While the manga continues to be released in English, is readily available in Australia, and is far ahead of the anime in turns of story, the excellent quality of animation that the show boasts, along with great music and voice-acting mean that for many people the anime is their preferred method of experiencing Attack on Titan.

As for the second season, it kicks off right where the first season ended, and wastes no time setting up the key plot-lines and mysteries for the coming season.

The new opening song ‘Shinzou wo Sasageyo’ is certainly less intense than previous ones, and seems to lack that certain kick that ‘Feuerroter Pfeil und Bogen’ had, and contains some truly nonsensical imagery, but I’ve already become strangely fond of the understated and slightly disturbing closing song ‘Yuugure no Tori’ and the western renaissance styled art that accompanies it.

In the first two episodes there was a noticeable lack of Eren and co. as the series shifts to focus instead on some of the secondary characters. It’s especially nice to see Sasha and Conny get some time in the spotlight as episode 27 gives us a chance to learn more about their respective pasts and get to know them both a little better.

Episode 28 returns to a focus on Eren, with a few key revelations and plenty of foreshadowing, which does more to ramp up excitement for the coming episodes than either of the episodes before it.

Attack on Titan has always been well-known for it’s over the top action and gore, but what has truly been impressive so far in this season is the quieter, more human moments. Conny’s return to his hometown is truly disturbing and haunting, and seeing Sasha’s past makes her all the more lovable as a character.

The Beast Titan is being set up extremely well, being both disturbing and mysterious enough that it demands your full attention whenever it shows up on screen.

Animation for this second season has been a little patchy in spots, at least compared to the original season (which was close to flawless), but with so many revelations coming this season’s fast-paced plot is going to be more than enough to keep you coming back. It’s definitely going to be interesting to see how it all pans out, and whether this season second will end up being as beloved as the first.

Attack on Titan season 2 is available to stream in Australia on Crunchyroll. If you simply can’t wait to find out what happens next, the first 20 volumes of the manga are also available in English.