Attack on Titan Season 3 Episode 12: And Now We Wait Until Next Year

Attack on Titan Season Three Episode 12 - Erwin and Levi

Well, once I found out this season was going to be split in two, any hope for an actual resolution of any sort this time around when out the window so I guess I’m not actually disappointed. And despite last week being a bit of a snooze fest and this week just plunging us into a cliff-hanger with a during end-credits tease, season three has still become my favourite Attack on Titan season yet, though I’ll get more into that when I do a whole season (half-season?) review.

Attack on Titan Season 3 Episode 12 - Hange

This week we get the higher ups talking some more and recapping things for us so that we know where we’re going next and why. Other than the over use of brown in this scene it works well enough and at least we’re clearly set on a course of action for now. That’s probably the best thing they did. Even with the gap between now and April next year when part 2 is supposed to come out, this episode gives us a clear direction which is something the end of season one and two lacked.

Attack on Titan Season Three Episode 12 - Eerwin

We get an interesting scene between Erwin and Levi that might have more significance and people who have read the manga probably know what that is but for me I’ll just file that under interesting and wait until the show chooses to maybe get back to it.

Attack on Titan Season 3 Episode 12 - Sasha

However, it was the second part of the episode that really got things going as we saw Sasha at her food craziest yet before Jean and Eren get into a ridiculous fight. It was kind of nice to see a little life in Eren even if he very nearly reverted into shouting idiot Eren. I think they played this nicely with him trying to have a bit of energy but inside he’s still kind of broken. Plus, we then got a Mikasa, Armin and Eren moment that was kind of adorable and brought us back to where these three started (as the OP has been all season) and it was just kind of nice to see this again even if it felt like tragic death flags were being raised all around (or maybe that’s just me because I’m used to this show doing that to us).

Attack on Titan Season 3 Episode 12 - Jean and Eren

So yes, this episode works and as a mid-season point it is pretty solid. As the last episode we’re going to see this year I just have to shake my head and remind myself it is Attack on Titan. This isn’t the worst thing they’ve ever done to viewers.

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A Certain Magical Index Season 3 Episodes 1 + 2: That Time Something Happened to Kamijou

I’ve previously reviewed season1 of a Certain Magical Index and at the time I kind of made it clear that while I had fun enough with the show, I preferred the Railgun spin-off, in a very rare case of preferring a spin-off and that Index has some real issues. I never did review the second season individually because really it was jut more of the same. Well, back for a third season, eventually, and the first episode finally available for people in more regions and the question is what are we in for?

A Certain Magical Index Season 3 Episode 2

There’s a simple answer though; nothing has changed. We still have Kamijou wandering around Academy City harmlessly going about his business and being just really unlucky in the events and encounters he has during episode 1 of this return. On the brighter side we’re reminded quickly of the key players in the academy and they even throw a shooting into the mix just so we’re reminded that despite looking like a goofy school club anime this show actually does have some darker ideas and fight sequences in it so just wait around.

A Certain Magical Index Season 3 Episode 1

Yet they don’t make the audience wait long, or even let the plot and exposition even catch up, as we scene change to France in episode 2 where Kamijou teams up with another girl from the previous seasons, and I’m really struggling with my memory to place her, to destroy some mystic pipeline and instead they get attacked by a guy who claims to be the right seat of god.

A Certain Magical Index Season 3 Episode 2

Yeah, they haven’t eased up on throwing every term and idea they can drag out of any theology book on the planet at the audience in great big exposition dumps either so it really is business just as usual for this show. The fan-service is also plentiful with panty shots, blushing girls, and other revealing outfits coming thick and fast in these two episodes.

So pretty much if you’ve enjoyed this before, it gets right back into the same tone we left off at and it is still just kind of fun. A little head scratching at times with some of their ideas about religious organisations and the way they use some of their terminology, but still fun.

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Attack on Titan Season 3 Episode 11: Aw, He’s Special

Attack on Titan Season 3 Episode 11

Well, we knew we were moving on from the previous arc but this episode felt like yet more transition and catching people up on how things fit together rather than actually moving onto anything. And that isn’t necessarily a bad thing given the three seasons have been spread over a large period of time and we’ve recently been hit with a whole stack of revelations so the characters taking time to process and giving the audience time to process is kind of nice, even if it doesn’t make for exactly compelling viewing.

Attack on Titan Season 3 Episode 11

I am actually starting to like this new and subdued Eren. Honestly, I’m kind of hoping he doesn’t ‘snap out of it’ anytime soon because a thinking Eren who contemplates and actually tries for others rather than going off idiotically and brashly while shouting his ideas is a lot more bearable as a character (again, not quite as interesting given he doesn’t tend to do much, but there are other characters who can fill that void).

This episode gives us a brief look at Historia as a Queen who seems to be taking a very hands on approach to working with the masses which is fine and all but it does leave you wondering who is making the actual big administrative decisions while she’s doing manual labour. It does however at least give us some sort of hope that things might improve inside the walls (which is probably just so they can later dash that hope into small pieces).

Attack on Titan Season 3 Episode 11

We then transition to a scene with Eren and his crew eating soup very slowly and the other recruits making a bit deal of how much they’ve changed in the months since they became scouts. It took me by surprise to given for me its been years and the change seemed really slow, but I guess in the in story time it isn’t that long. This also leads Eren to figuring out that the training commander guy knew his dad so Levi, Hange, and most everyone who has remained relevant ride out to the training grounds for story time.

If I seem a little flippant about this it is because while it eats a large chunk of the episode time, we essentially don’t get much from this guy. I really quite like Hange’s reaction to his story. While I’m kind of certain that maybe something he said will later become relevant (now there’s a clear sentence), it all just felt like a very drawn out red-herring.

Attack on Titan Season 3 Episode 11

So yeah, I’m not overly sold on this episode even though there are some nice ideas and touches in it. Really it will depend where this goes as to whether this works or not (another case where maybe binging would improve the story – or maybe it wouldn’t, hard to know until later).

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Visualist x 100!! – My Hero Academia Final Impressions with Kapodaco and Karandi

Karandi: Well, season three is now over and Kapodaco and I now have the chance to look back over the last six months of our lives viewing My Hero Academia and to think about how we feel about the series as a whole. That’s kind of a hard ask right now for me given I’m still kind of looking at that final episode and wondering what that was supposed to be, but I guess we’ll muddle through it. Kapodaco, what are you thinking?

Kapodaco: I was thinking about it at work today. It feels so perfectly succinct. I rated the first season a 7, the second a 7.5, and now I’m feeling a 6.5 for the third. On MAL, I have a 7 for all three of them, so if one isn’t looking to dig deeper, they’ll assume I saw them all the same. But that’s personal perks.

There’s a lot that the series does that got me just as excited as any other season, even more so on occasion. At the same time, there’s definitely some big befuddlement with the scope of the story and fighting off the temptation to introduce a thousand characters to keep the story spicy, but then having to keep up with said characters and make it harder to keep everything in focus. It detracts from the characters one actually cares about and wants to see more of. It happened a lot during the end of the season with other classmates simply noting their observations and little more, and I said very early on with this season that I was looking forward to seeing these classmates have more of a role—by the end, it was definitely underwhelming in that category. What say you, Karandi?

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Karandi: I’m in agreement. One of the biggest issues season three has had is that it insists on trying to keep the whole class in each of its sequences and has all of these characters essentially standing around and doing very little. All of these students got into the hero course and class A and yet they so rarely get to do anything.

Then season three had the fight sequence against the villains where we saw a couple of characters we’d already met but it introduced the pro-heroes doing the training, the random kid that Midoriya had to convince that heroes weren’t all bad, and half a dozen villains. We moved into the exam arc with a whole bunch of schools and characters. Then right at the end we have the Big Three introduced. None of these characters had anywhere near enough screen time or development to make them anything more than their name flashing across the screen and maybe their quirk so I have zero attachment to them.

I will admit, that while I’ve been throwing a lot of rocks at season three of My Hero Academia, compared to the vast majority of seasonal anime that I’ve been watching, even season three is pretty solid entertainment. My biggest issue is that it isn’t as good as season two. Which might seem a little petty but at the moment it is still a disappointment.

Outside of the characters though, I felt the overall narrative structure this season let it down a little bit and I touched on this a couple of reviews ago. What did you think?

My Hero Academia Episode 60

Kapodaco: I may have said a few times that the clichés had piled on a little more than with previous seasons. Even when they weren’t, I think a lot of the issues stems back to the fact that there are a thousand new characters introduced, such that the mangaka is biting off more than he can chew. He wants to make the scope huge so that it can feel like a giant world of all-encompassing heroism, much like how Capitalism is the entire world of my home country of the U.S.A. I can feel the mangaka wanting to do more with his script that perhaps anime isn’t accustomed to doing with a “mere” two-cour season.

When the season wanted to do more with the state of the world after the fall of All Might, it was fairly intriguing, because while the end result is fairly inevitable (villainy skyrockets), he tends to paint these villains as more than just “I’MMA BURN SHIT BECAUSE WHY NOT?!” These characters, who will inevitably have more of a point in the story at earlier junctions and with higher stakes, are better incorporated than the random heroes or one-off Big Three™ groups because their motivations are clear(-ish) and they have more to do than to let the pacing methods of introductory writing take the wheel.

In a phrase, he’s biting off more than he can chew. I may have said that before. And while I was writing that, I made the horrid realization that Mineta had more character-distinguishing moments than anyone else in the minor cast.

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But let’s ignore that and focus a little on the positives, yeah? I think I know the answer to this, but what was the best part of the season for you?

Karandi: Tricky question (not). My favourite part hands down was All Might’s final battle. Not so much for the fight itself (though that was pretty cool and Midoriya helping Bakugo without actually getting into the fight was also kind of cool) but more because of the greater implications in the world. I really wish that we’d get more on this because every time they touch on it, we get a moment that actually feels like it has weight and gets me very interested. Even during the exam arc, as dull as I found that, when they were actually discussing specific changes to the exam format because of how they wanted a different type of hero in the future, heroes focused on team work rather than individual achievements, it just felt like the previous events with Stain, All Might’s arc, and everything else were coming together to have a real impact on the society within the story.

That remains one of the great strengths of My Hero Academia even though, as you have said, the writer may very well be biting off more than he can chew. Unlike so many other super hero stories, this one really feels like events are shaping the lives of everyone in the world and the structure of society rather than just being a cool fight and then life goes on unchanged. I really enjoy that aspect of it and I really hope it continues as that is what keeps drawing me back into the story. How about your favourite part of the season?

Kapodaco: I am in total agreement. All Might’s final fight was the high point of the series bar-none. I don’t recall exactly, but I think I mentioned that the episode itself, the one where everything becomes “resolved,” was an easy 10/10 episode. So it wasn’t just the best episode of this series for me, but one of the best episodes of any anime I’ve ever seen. I can and cannot be emotional dependent on the subject matter, but that aspect of All Might and the significance of his passing of the torch was something that got me really hyped. It made me a fan of All Might, ironically in the same way it made everyone within the universe of the show a fan of All Might. That sheer, unquestioned passion and charisma to do what’s right was something this series can do phenomenally well with the amount of attention to detail in building upon it.

Though I will also give credit to a point where we tend to overlook because it directly followed a long chain of “meh” episodes. I really liked the final two episodes concerning the U-A students being ambushed by the League of Villains. It properly gave me what I wanted in other characters getting the spotlight and it presented an interesting potential for Bakugo’s character (which ended somewhat dully, but there’s still time) that I thought was intriguing at the time. It showcased the power of the League of Villains and the experience needed for the young heroes before they could properly handle a full-scale villain attack. There was a lot going on in those episodes that I really appreciated. I may also simply like it because it followed a lot of dull episodes, so I was really just looking for something to cheer for.

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Karandi: It is a good point that the power of the villains doesn’t get showcased very often and it is something that is somewhat lacking, particularly in the latter half of this season. We know there’s this threat sitting out there but we so rarely see them and that threat doesn’t feel overly connected to the main characters all that often, so this ambush was a really great moment in terms of seeing the students being at times overwhelmed by the villains and unprepared for dealing with the attack. It also gave them some great moments where we could see them working together and helping each other out in a fairly intense situation.

Alright, so which characters do you feel really shone in this season, if any?

Kapodaco: Well, the easy answer is Midoriya and Bakugo. Then again, they are the most important characters in this series, I think. All Might is definitely up there in importance, as well, but the moment he retired, it all fell to the younger generation, and Midoriya and Bakugo are two people who were totally inspired by All Might’s heroism. Their fight scene was a rare highlight in the second-part of the series, and they continue to be the only characters (okay, just Bakugo) that I see anyone I follow on Twitter care about. They were the shining spots of the season as an obvious answer.

If I had to give an answer concerning a minor character… It’s fairly difficult. A lot of the minor characters had some time to shine, specifically in the Provisional Exam Arc when they all had split up and what-not. I actually recall not minding the group consisting of Yaoyorozu, Asui, Jiro, and the masked dude with wings whose name I can never remember. Still, one episode—half an episode, really, doesn’t give them the credit of a “Shining spot” in the season. I guess if I had to pick a character among the minor cast… Aizawa. He may not have had any immensely notable scenes or important parts specifically to his character, but he’s the only character I’d consider minor who had an ever-present place on the season and provided enough input—whether serious or not—to give him a place in my memory banks. And hey, Aizawa’s cool. He should get a shout-out. What about you? Who do you like most rather than Wind Guy™?

Hero45a

Karandi: What is Wind Guy’s name? He must have one, but I just don’t care enough to look it up. I think you are right about Aizawa. He was a fairly constant presence this season in each arc and while I still feel the basic education system in this world leaves a lot to be desired, he genuinely does look out for his students even if he doesn’t insist they all get a lot of therapy. I particularly liked his role after the first arc where he and All Might were apologising to parents and then his observations during the exam arc were fairly well received.

That said, if I was going to give a shout out to a minor cast member I’d probably go with Kirishima. He doesn’t do a huge amount that has a major impact on the plot, but I feel his presence with Bakugo has really helped to moderate Bakugo’s more extreme moments this season and it is a friendship that has formed gradually since season one to the point where you aren’t sure when they actually started being friends but it feels right that they are. I especially liked that he was involved in Bakugo’s rescue but even in the provisional license exam he was in Bakugo’s group for the duration. Anyway, he’s a character I hadn’t paid a huge amount of attention to previously and this season just made me realise that he’s a fairly useful presence with the dynamic of the group.

As far as main characters go, I was a little disappointed with Todoroki and Uraraka this season, though they both had their moments I just felt like they were just rehashing the same moments we’d already seen from these two characters. Don’t get me wrong, Uraraka is still adorable as she stares out the window at Midoriya and her decision to put her feelings to the side to focus on becoming a hero are pretty logical, but she’s just so underused in the story at this point. And Todoroki’s moment was a definite step backwards. So, yeah, I’d have to say Midoriya and Bakugo got the best moments from the main cast this season as well.

My Hero Academia - Episode 55 - Todoroki

Anything else you want to discuss before we wrap this up?

Kapodaco: Well, I would’ve suggested a worst moment of the season as a whole, though I guess we did sort of go on a spiel above about the series’ pacing and all. If I could say something about characters that disappointed me, I would agree with Todoroki, but would also like to throw in Iida. He had some good short moments here, but he was one of my favorite characters coming out of the first and second seasons, and here he’s basically a nagging mother to everyone and that’s kind of his shtick. Really would’ve liked to have seen more from him.

Karandi: I actually agree. Iida really has become a nagging mother and that’s his sole purpose at this point in the story. I’d really like to see him having a bit more personality next season, or they could just move him to the background rather than having him in scenes just to lecture.

Kapodaco: He’s not Mineta, though.

Karandi: True. And for the most part we’ve avoided mentioning Mineta. Though I wish the show would avoid mentioning Mineta. Or showing him. Or actually having him as a cast member. He gets more irritating every single episode. Or maybe I already hit my tolerance for his shtick and I wish they’d just drop it already.

Kapodaco: I regret bringing that up, because now we’re sort of just lingering before the finish line.

Hero52k

Karandi: Right, so final thoughts?

Kapodaco: It was a letdown, but not so much that I think it hurts the overall appeal of the show. A lot of good foundational things are still present in the form of the League of Villains growing stronger, Midoriya (and now Bakugo) having more motivation to get stronger, and All For One promises to still be around, and I think he’s infinitely more interesting than half the other characters introduced in this show since the beginning. I’ll reiterate again that I want some focus on other characters, but it’s definitely hard with so little time for such hard, time-consuming work as animation. I’m still fairly enticed to watch the fourth season. I was actually a little intrigued by the end of your analysis this week on the final episode. Will you continue the series?

Karandi: I think I’m realising now how viewing seasonally changes my views on shows. My Hero Academia has a rich world and some really interesting ideas but season three I found really challenging to watch week to week. Between deliberate cliff-hanger endings, arcs that didn’t feel rewarding to watch, and just low points, I will admit that this season was a bit of a struggle. And it is a challenge I didn’t face when I watched Bleach because seasonal viewing wasn’t a thing (and I’m comparing to Bleach because other than Hunter x Hunter (still unfinished), these are the only long running shounen anime I’ve attempted). But if I picked season five of Bleach (or really any season after season three) and tried to review it episode to episode in a weekly format, I can imagine I’d be every bit as frustrated. Looking at the whole, there’s still a lot to like about My Hero Academia.

That kind of leaves me wondering if I will do episode reviews of season four or just wait until it is done and binge it. I did just buy the second season on DVD as a cheer me up present to myself and I’m really looking forward to binge watching that, and I think it might be my preferred viewing method for this kind of show. So, am I continuing? I think I’ll start season four episodicially, but I might end up bailing and waiting until it is done airing.

However, if you wanted to review it together again, I’d probably really enjoy that. It has been really great working with you on this and I’ve enjoyed discussing the show each week even when I haven’t enjoyed the show so much.

Kapodaco: If you want to collaborate with me again for the fourth season, I’d be more than willing. I came to you with this collaboration, if you recall. And this was certainly an experience I won’t ever forget. It’s likely the most rewarding thing I’ve done in the ani-blogging community ever. Should we do this again, however, I want the exclamation mark quantity increased to four.

Karandi: I think it’s agreed then (although maybe not about the exclamation marks). So on that note, let’s finish this because I think we’ve gone on quite long enough. I’m thinking we need a ‘Plus Ultra!’ or something to finish with, but I’ve got nothing.

Kapodaco: Leave it to me.

Everyone! Look forward to Karandi and I’s next collaboration on the fourth season of My Hero Academia! Visualist x100!!!!™ Coming again to a blog in the near future!!!!!!!! Plus Ultra!!!!!!!

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Thanks for reading and I hope you enjoyed following along with us this season. Looking forward to the next one. Plus Ultra!

Attack on Titan Season 3 Episode 10: Choices Made

Attack on Titan Episode 10 - Kenny and Levi

Levi talks with Kenny and we see the life Kenny had and the choices he made before they crown Historia. While not a lot actually happens this episode of Attack on Titan it is a nice pause to fill in some gaps and prepare us for what is coming next.

Attack on Titan Episode 10 - Kenny facing Uri

Kenny had a colourful past and seeing his confrontation with the true king before he became his follower was an interesting experience. While it is still hard to really understand what makes Kenny tick, that’s kind of the point because Kenny himself is confused by some of the choices he made along the way. And that makes his hesitation to use the needle make a lot of sense, that and he clearly didn’t want to become a brainless titan but also didn’t want to die.

Attack on Titan Episode 10

Likewise this episode gave us some insight into Levi but there’s still so much to the character that just hasn’t been explained which keeps him interesting enough. He’s a character that has had a fairly big impact on the story but very little is really known about him from watching the anime so these small moments where we see his past are appreciated as they help to flesh out the picture a bit more.

Attack on Titan Episode 10

Historia’s crowning ceremony was what you would expect and really all I wanted to know was why the people are so easily lead around. Last week they were berating the scouts and the military and being belligerent about having to evacuate and now they are singing the praises of Historia because she happened to land one blow on a titan that had already been blown apart by Eren and the other Scout’s efforts. I get what they are going for with the masses but it really is depressing to watch sometimes.

Lastly, we finally catch up with the guys who left the scouts after confessing to being titans and they’ve crossed paths with the beast titan. While a bit of context for this encounter might be nice, they do nicely set up a future obstacle for Eren and the others to face.

Ttian10c

So all and all this episode was pretty satisfying as it wrapped up some story threads, reignited others, and more or less consolidated things that needed it so that we’re ready to move on. The question is, what will we move on to and will it be as satisfying as this last arc was?

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Visualist x 100!! – My Hero Academia Season Three Episode 24

Right so with one more episode to go My Hero Academia sets up… some sort of fight between first years and third years? I’m not entirely certain that this is really something I’m all that hyped for, but I guess we’ll see how it goes. In the meantime, this is how Kapodaco and I felt about the penultimate episode of the season.

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Karandi:

Well, I’m pretty much convinced at this point that season three is going to end on a reasonably unspectacular note despite the promise of a fight against one of UA’s top students. This season has just been all over the place and there’s no time left to build up to anything that would feel kind of actually climatic. I’m definitely feeling that from a seasonal point of view, it would have made more sense to have given us a single cour season ending with All Might’s retirement as that would have been a spectacular season end. Then this could be the mid-point of a new season rather than the ending.

Okay, now that I’m done rewriting the show, what was this episode like other than making me realise that there’s little next week will do to really reconsider my thoughts on this season?

Adequate. That’s really the best way to describe the episode.

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We get a half episode or so following around a monologuing villain and in the process get a feel for the genuine changes to society following All Might’s retirement. I genuinely enjoyed this section, though again, it isn’t going to build to something amazing in an episode (or at least it really shouldn’t). So if this had come earlier in the season I’d have been thrilled by this sequence but as a second last episode starting point I was kind of wondering where they think they are going with it.

The second half has the students attending their opening ceremony and we get some clear envy from Midoriya who feels like he’s being left out (due to the whole house arrest thing). And again, this section works well enough but isn’t exactly thrilling. I do wonder why at the end of the third season we’re still getting character names and quirks floating over the screen though. If you don’t know who Uraraka is at this point, you aren’t going to just because they put her name on the screen.

Honestly though, the introduction of the Big Three felt kind of lazy. Like they were just kind of dropped into the plot for the sake of convenience. Maybe they do something great with these characters but their introduction was a little bit underwhelming and again, we’ve only got one episode left so I’m not really expecting much to come from this at this point.

So, the episode works well enough. If this had been a mid-season episode it would have been fine. As a penultimate episode of a third season, I’m a little less than impressed though.

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Kapodaco:

There is absolutely nothing I could possibly add that would make my general thoughts on the episode any different from Karandi’s She is absolutely spot-on on just about everything.

I will add a few more thoughts on various moments, however. Notably with the beginning sequence.

I thought it was super cool to know more about… Two? Is that his name? The villain who reminds me a bit of anime Deadpool. His backstory is almost hilarious with how bizarre it is, and the fact that he seems like a reasonable dude despite his alignment is super fascinating. I was a little disappointed the whole episode wasn’t just about him. The state of the world after All Might’s “retirement” felt a little forced to me, though I suppose there’s little other way to make it known than to have things pan out in a point-blank fashion. Writing in this episode was also in danger of encroaching on Saturday-morning-cartoon levels of dumb (“If you’re trash, make like it and burn for me”) (paraphrasing).

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The moment I saw one of the “Big Three,” whose appearance is strikingly similar to that of All Might, I thought to myself, “Oh, God. Are we going to have one of those ‘I’M the proper replacement to All Might! Look how much he inspires me in my appearance and demeanor!’ type situations where Midoriya begins to question his worth as ‘the Chosen One’?” With one episode left, he’ll likely be prominent for any potential (or, frankly, inevitable) future seasons as the “new” rival or whatever. If correct, ugggggggggggggggh. This is such a lazy trope that I sincerely, sincerely hope the mangaka has some witty plans for, because doing it like any other of the thousands of series I’ve seen do it before would be very tiring.

Does anyone else notice that, aside from Todoroki, no other character than Midoriya and Bakugo seems to be getting any meaningful screentime? This episode has various characters make comments—Tsui says a thing, Tokoyami says a thing, Iida makes a few jokes—but they’re essentially background characters right now. I really miss the events when it displayed the input and potential for other characters, both in their powers and personality. It’s inevitable with about 365234625 characters that occasionally they’ll have to take a backseat, but with how well the series has been on showcasing them in the past, it feels like the mangaka is starting to bite off more than he can chew.

Meh. Wouldn’t it be ironic if the last episode turns out to be so unbelievably spectacular that it completely destroys Karandi and I’s expectations and makes us diehard fans for life? That’d be cool.

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Thanks for reading and be sure to check out Kapodaco’s blog next week when we review episode 25 and the season final.

Attack on Titan Season 3 Episode 9: To Kill A Titan

Attack on TItan Episode 9

Credit where it is due to this episode. Firstly, it reminded me that Attack on Titan is very good at making me really dislike humans. One of the things that really bugged me in season one was the absence of characters I could care about because everyone just seemed to be a truly horrible human being, and that included the huddled masses.

Attack on Titan episode 9

Well, season three gives us this episode where the military are lying to the people about running a training drill and the people get all huffy not because they are being lied to but because the people who are fighting to save their lives are inconveniencing them. Seriously, are the military sure anyone in this world is worth saving? Still, the generally despicable nature of people in this anime is part of what makes it interesting to watch when contrasted with all of those anime of fluffy and happy people who just try to make everyone smile so I’m actually pretty happy that we get this solid reminder that this anime is not about sweetness and light but about a very gritty and sour reality.

Attack on Ttian Episode 9

Secondly, thanks for the reminder that Titans are horrific. I mean, Rod Reiss’ Titan form looming at the wall is one truly disgusting image and one that isn’t going to leave me anytime soon. It has been awhile since there’s been any real repulsion or emotion at all felt toward a titan (curiosity about the still missing in action beast titan isn’t quite the same thing), so the genuinely moment of recoil when we got a look at this thing was fairly welcome.

Attack on Titan Episode 9

Thirdly, Eren. I know I’m normally all for beating up Eren and I really don’t like him as a character but it is like he’s finally turned a corner and grown up just a little bit. Whether he ruins it all by doing something utterly stupid in a couple of episodes remains to be seen but it is almost as if he’s come through the ordeal of the past 7 episodes finally seeing the world just a little bit clearer. It if sticks I might even have to look back at Eren and how that growth happened over the course of all three seasons, though I’ll wait and see if it sticks before I revise my opinion of him as a character.

Attack on Titan Episode 9

And finally, Historia. For a character that had never left much impact on me, even when they spent a lot of the second season trying to find Christa, she’s really stepped up as well this season and with both her and Eren having fairly solid character growth this is pretty much the best I’ve seen from Attack on Titan since its beginning.

Titan9f

So, yeah, credit to a fairly solid episode of great moments. Still want to know why they even bother having the other soldiers standing around firing canons. It never works and the other soldiers seem woefully under-trained which makes sense but is still pretty pathetic. This episode certainly gave us enough spectacle and with the set up at the end for next week things seem to be rolling along nicely for the season so far.

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Attack on Titan Season 3 Episode 8: They Finally Remembered Eren’s Basement – I’m So Happy Right Now

Attack on Titan Episode 8

I probably shouldn’t be so hung up on the whole Eren’s basement thing but it was the one carrot season one left me with that made me want to keep watching this franchise. And then season two was delayed, multiple times. When we finally got to season two, no basement. It was kind of frustrating, so imagine how happy I was when after a series of pretty great episodes they finally mention getting around to the basement. You know what, that hope alone could probably keep me watching another season without a rewarding pay-off though I hope Attack on Titan isn’t cruel enough to its viewers to do that.

Attack on Titan Season 3 Episode 8

An unbound and ungagged Eren actually manages to really seem small and pathetic this episode until I kind of tried to actually think about his situation. As much as I dislike his particular brand of ‘shout-fest protagonism’ that has been on display since the beginning of this series, Eren’s really been through a lot and his drive to kill the Titans to get out into the world, before that transferred into kill the Titans for revenge, has suddenly become quite hollow even to him. Basically the humans have always had the power to end the titan threat and for 100 years they haven’t and for whatever reason Eren’s father stole that power away from the Reiss’ which left humans completely vulnerable. I kind of actually felt pretty bad for him and really his momentary idea of let’s just let Reiss eat me and then fix things actually doesn’t seem like a truly a terrible plan.

Attack on Titan Season 3 Episode 8

However, we would not be watching this sort of an anime if the rest of his ‘friends’ didn’t rally around and give him a good kick while he is feeling sorry for himself leading to him choosing instead to protect them as the cavern falls down. There’s a lot of plot convenience here in that firstly the right vial fell out of the bag, secondly Eren even in his distressed state and with blood and tears in his eyes read it, and thirdly Eren managed to successfully use the new power in the instant that he gains it, but you know its the kind of spectacle you can dissect or just enjoy so let’s just go with it for now.

Meanwhile, Reiss’ titan form is… interesting? Okay, we’ve had some really disturbing variations on titans over the course of two and a bit seasons but a giant incapable of standing that literally burns everything around it and leaves a path of destruction just by passing through an area is a new one. It also raises the question of how they intend to fight it given you can’t exactly just swing around and chop it in the neck when you would burn before you got near and it is lying on its back (or is it lying on its front, it wasn’t very clear). Either way, not a great plan.

Attack on Titan Season 3 Episode 8

What was nice was seeing Historia taking charge of the discussion as they rode in the wagon and correcting Eren’s false assumptions that somehow having Reiss eat him would be a good idea. Given where the series seems to be pushing her character, this was a nice set up for it.

All and all, this was another pretty solid episode with about the only down side being that Kenny and his group ended up being even less significant than expected. So a lot of build up for very little actual reward before a large number of them got buried in the rubble. It will be interesting to see if any of them come back later but even if they do, they’ve now lost their backer so I doubt they are going to be of much importance (could be wrong on that one but it seems really unlikely).

Attack on Titan Season 3 Episode 8

But, and here is the most important part, we get a solid reminder of the basement and even the characters make a joke that seems to reference the fact that it has been all but forgotten for a very long time by this story. So happy.

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Visualist x 100!! – My Hero Academia Season Three Episode 22

The exam is done and now we know who passed and who failed, but more importantly, My Hero Academia is finally turning its attention to what is coming next. The story kind of stalled during the last arc and it kind of felt like we were spinning our wheels and just waiting for it to pass but episode 22 plunges us straight back into the very dynamic world of heroes and villains and this episode is much better for it. Kapodaco and I share our thoughts below, but we’d love to hear what you thought of the latest episode.

My Hero Academia Episode 60

Kapodaco:

Well, what do you know? It really was the Provisional Exam arc bogging down all the potential quality. The moment it ended, I became intrigued with the series again.

First and foremost, not only did Todoroki and Wind Guy™ not pass, but Bakugo didn’t pass, either. I feel like justice has been served with all my griping in the past weeks. This was slightly mitigated by the examiners giving them a fallback plan via a three-month course to essentially “correct” their faults… but they were all bound to pass anyway, so it’s a fine substitute. Nice of the series to not take the easy way out. Now I’d like to see if it will ever show the three characters in said three-month course. Probably not, but we’ll see.

Even more ominously, the bearer of hormonal jealousy ended up being a member of the League of Villains, who also revealed she had a drop of Midoriya’s blood. Seeing as Midoriya’s ingested All Might’s DNA (which I think in this case means it’s ingrained in his blood), this might hint at All Might clones, or something of the sort. That’s interesting.

Hero60i

What I found to be the most riveting part of the episode was the talk between All Might and All For One, even if I think the reasoning for the meeting was bogus. It laid the foundation of what the world may be coming to, as nothing All For One said was unreasonable, which was what made it so threatening. Even behind bars, his influence and perspective is one that seems like he’s in complete control. This is a good villain—a very good one. Just out of curiosity, I’d like to see an episode that looks at what All For One claimed in his spiel, whether the world really was on edge and if villains felt more motivated to act.

And as if the developments wouldn’t end, Bakugo has figured out Midoriya got his quirk from All Might (which, frankly, is pretty obvious if anyone paid close attention). Now he wants to fight him. I don’t know about myself, but this is a moment many have been dying to see since the beginning. Bakugo and Midoriya duking it out, presumably going all out. If I may make a prediction—as I normally do—the moment the fight actually kicks up, something bad will happen that’ll stop the fight midway… assuming they even fight at all with Midoriya fidgeting and hesitating.

While not quite a return to All Might form, this episode definitely went back to the formula that worked so well for the series in the past. Lots of developments happening all at once, great danger being seeded in the minds of the heroes, and the prospect of something bigger in the distance. I enjoyed this episode quite a bit, far more than the the last, say, four or five episodes. I’m sincerely hoping the season ends on a high note.

My Hero Academia Episode 60

Karandi:

I also found this episode far more enjoyable than pretty much anything we’ve seen since the exam started, though despite the many positives to come out of this episode I don’t think it makes the previous episodes any more palatable. It was great to see that they did fail some students but then I felt they undermined that by giving them that second chance rather than making them wait for the next exam.

Still, credit where it is due, and for the first time ever, they made a sensible move in terms of providing actual and real feedback to the students to assist them in improving. Why we don’t see this more often in exams and anime schools is a  little beyond me but so many of them take the Food Wars approach of pass or get out and never be heard from again, which kind of defeats the purpose of them being in school. That was a solid bit of world building and brought some credibility to everything we’d sat through in terms of the first elimination round and then the observations during the second round, including not just removing candidates who dropped below the pass mark.

My Hero Academia Episode 60

Like Kapodaco, I also really enjoyed the conversation between All Might and All For One. I love the idea that both mentors are essentially benched in terms of being active participants and it is the next generation and those that they’ve inspired (for better or worse) will carry on the fight. Though there’s definitely something ominous about the fact that All For One is still alive in general. All that security just seems like it is begging for a break in and break out by the villains later to rally the troops further and showing us what it all looks like means we’re now kind of expecting to see someone getting through all of that.

Then we have Midoriya and Bakugo. I’ll take a moment to happily jump up and down at how cute Midoriya was when he was smiling at his license and taking a photo of it to send to his mum and All Might. Then I’ll get to the more serious confrontation between these two which has been a very long time coming and while I’m expecting them both to get in trouble with a teacher if they actually start fighting at school (wasn’t the whole point of moving them on campus to provide actual supervision) I would very much like to see a one on one between these two characters.

While not a stand out episode, this one was a pretty solid return to what I enjoy about this anime and I kind of hope this season doesn’t lose steam again and manages to finish on a high note.

My Hero Academia Episode 60

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Attack on Titan Season 3 Episode 7: Two Things I Didn’t Think Possible

Attack on Titan Episode 7 - Mikasa

Season three continues to be a surprising delight though not without some issues, as episode 7 drops yet more information about the walls and the world even while the scouts continue to fight to get to Eren.

Attack on Titan Season 7 - Hange

The fight at the start of this episode is brutal, but over fairly quickly all things considered as the second half of this episode has bigger fish to fry. Seeing some of the scouts in action against other humans is both unsettling and all fairly exhilarating. What amazed me more was how few casualties the scouts seemed to take but they kind of saved all their shock for a single character getting taken down and that is where they were left with the enemy retreating to another chamber. The action in this sequence is good and the smokey visuals plays well into it. The sounds of the ODM are fantastic as are the shots and the sounds of the blades. Where I will criticise it is where it brings in a music soundtrack though that is probably more personal taste because I found it both distracting and fairly uninspired. Still, in terms of follow ups to cliff-hangers this delivered plenty that was worth waiting for.

Attack on Titan - Episode 7 - Kenny

 Still, the greater part of the episode lay with Eren, Historia, Reiss and surprisingly Kenny. I kind of thought they would drag out Kenny’s motive for working with Reiss for longer but apparently not, and apparently, Kenny is the kind of guy that kicks over the sand-castle when he doesn’t get what he wants. Realising his own plan is going to come to nothing, he throws a serious spanner in the works of Reiss’ plan.

Attack on Titan Episode 7 - Historia

Meanwhile, Historia seems to be going along beautifully with Reiss’ plan before she suddenly asks the most sensible question I’ve ever heard come out of an Attack on Titan character’s mouth and I’ll applaud the show for this first moment that I absolutely did not see coming. And this, while we see an Eren who for the first time ever actually made me feel bad for him as a character. This was a serious moment where for the first time ever, I didn’t enjoy seeing Eren restrained, emotionally hurt, and essentially the world’s punching bag.

Attack on Titan Episode 7 - Eren

If I were to make a list of characters I don’t mind seeing get beaten up, Eren would be fairly high on that list (Ichigo from Bleach probably tops it out though because Ichigo getting beat up usually means he’s about to do something awesome). And yet in this episode Eren is at perhaps the most pathetic I’ve ever seen him. He doesn’t shout or yell, but resigns himself to letting things happen because no matter how you want to spin it, a lot of people have died because of his father’s choice. Maybe just as many would have died anyway but we have no way of knowing that.

So two things from Attack on Titan I didn’t think possible, plus Historia’s coolest moment ever, plus a cliffhanger that actually seems like it could be kind of cool and if last week to this week is any indicator, we won’t be left disappointed (hopefully).

By the way, I reserve the right to go back to hating Eren the next time he starts shouting.

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Karandi James

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