Season 4 of Attack on Titan

Madalyn Cottrell, MVCurrent Writer

Season 4 of Attack on Titan is something I have been waiting to see animated for years. I have been following along with the manga for as long as I can remember. When Mappa Studios announced they would be animating the final arcs of the manga, I was absolutely ecstatic.  

Attack on Titan is a widely popular anime in both Japan and America. The show is esteemed for being a psychological horror and drama that challenges the viewer’s perspective of where to draw the line between good and evil. It is an anime I have watched and I have been able to get many reluctant friends hooked on 

The initial plot of “Attack on Titan” is incredibly complicated. The show centers around a civilization inside of three walls. Over one hundred years ago, humanity was nearly driven to extinction because of the emergence of giant humanoid creatures called Titans, who attack and eat humans on sight. The show follows Eren Jaeger’s path of vengeance to eradicate the threat to mankind. I won’t delve into things, but trust me, there’s so many plot twists and revelations. It is something you want to go in with a blind eye so you can truly experience the show’s shock value.

Mappa Studios has taken over the Season 4 project. Wit Studios has animated the last 3 seasons, and Mappa has received a lot of hate for their style of animation. I do not understand why people are so upset. The new animation style is very accurate when compared to the manga, and all of the characters have more realistic body proportions. I do not see why that is such a bad thing. It’s not a show reliant on fan service, so people need to shut up and appreciate that we are even getting a fourth season. 

The new character designs are also stunning on screen. There has been a 4-year jump since the season 3 finale, and all of that unspoken development shows. All of the characters have changed, and we see these distinct differences in the first few moments we are with them. The Scouts have also advanced as a whole, and have become a lot more dangerous.

I will try to delve into my thoughts without revealing too many spoilers. Season 4 initially takes place on Marley, a nation across the seas from Paradis Island. Reiner has returned from his mission alone, and Eren Jaeger is in disguise, plotting his revenge. Prior to season 4, much of the story has revolved around Eren. In season 4, we finally get to see Reine Braun’s backstory a bit more. His youth had been corrupted by Marley’s lust for power, and he and his friends were sent to Paradis to destroy the walls and steal the power of the Founding Titan. Eren Jaeger wields the power of the Founding Titan and has become the face of hope for humanity, but we see a new side of him that shows how corrupt he has become. 

The final season also continues to blur the line between good and evil and has caused me to question my own morality. We get to see both sides of this dawning war. Characters I’ve known to be inherently good have taken hundreds of lives, and Marley is completely in the dark about what their control is actually doing to Paradis. Armin Arlert, one of Eren’s allies, shows remorse after taking the lives of hundreds. But the horror in Marleyan Pieck Finger’s eyes when she sees the Scouts show up, reveals how naive the esteemed “villains” really are. There’s no true side to take, but I naturally gravitate towards the Scouts because these are the characters I have been with the longest. Eren Jaeger is also slowly becoming the villain of his own story, and I think everyone will eventually rally against him to preserve the future of humanity. 

As dumb as it’s sounds, I have grown up with some of these characters. It’s hard to know this series will end soon, but all stories need to end. Even though I know the ending won’t be happy,  I am excited to see how the anime will conclude.