Shingeki no Kyojin 20 — Trust


Yay, Eren trusts people now! Whoop-de-doo. Oh wait now one of his teammates betrayed him. Cue another six episodes of bogus internal struggle. Just when I thought we’d finally answered the question of whether the soldiers should fight or roll over and die and let monsters eat them and their families. Tough question, that.


Actually, never mind, we’re still trying to answer this deep philosophical question. For the hard questions in life, there are no easy answers.

Having watched the past four episodes in one sitting, I can confirm that yes, indeed, pretty much nothing happened. Certainly not four episodes worth of material. Instead, we learn something we already knew (that Eren needs blood and intent to become a titan) and failed to capture the titan that was chasing them. We also further examined the profound psychological struggles of war, watched every single character second guess the commander, and discussed the details of the long range scouting formation in detail.

Like anyone gives a crap about the long range scouting formation.

8 thoughts on “Shingeki no Kyojin 20 — Trust

  1. I guess the long range scouting formation details could have been of interest if they had been of any real consequence. Seeing how the idea was, after all, very basic (travelling spread apart and signalling each other if shit happens), they probably could have cut a bit on that. Also because I think it’s not even such a great idea. I mean, all those smoke rounds fired in sequence. First, what happens if someone runs out of smoke rounds? Chain of messaging interrupted, titans eat everyone? Or does 90% of the weight they carry in this long ass expedition which requires them to be both well equipped and fast consist of useless smoke rounds? Second, why firing all those rounds in sequence? Won’t that mean that at the end everyone fires them and you don’t get to understand where the fuck the titans actually are? I think those should be visible from a long distance anyway.

    I also found incredibly bogus the whole “trust us” part. How can one trust a commander who not only does not tell his plans, but also lets people go to pointless slaughter? In fact, none of the soldiers killed for the DRAMA did pretty much anything to slow down the Female Titan, so why the hell did they have to die in the first place? Just tell them “look, don’t even try stopping that thing. It’s pointless, really”. And, that goes without saying, he could have just asked Eren to transform and wrestle the Female Titan to the ground. Or slow her down enough to capture her. Either way, he could have done a much better job. SnK does his action scenes very well, but it’s now reaching DBZ levels of slowness. “Are they still on Nameck?” should be officially replaced by “Are they still in Trost?”.

    1. I’m not sure why they need to fire the smoke rounds in sequence either. They’d have to be really spread out not to be able to see those things from far away. My understanding is that firing in sequence allows the commander in the center to figure out which direction the titans are in, if not how far away they are. So then he can command the formation to move around them. Although I’m not sure how he communicates this information to the entire group… I guess one color is turn left, one turn right, or something like that? You’d think he’d need to be more specific so they don’t actually screw up though.

  2. Yup, the long range formation is a wasted material, since it will never be explored any more. Likewise, all those eye-catches telling us the details of their equipments are wasted materials too, since their weapons/inventions/tools can’t do shit against the naked, derpy, human eating giants.
    It’s interesting to see how the fanboys went into rage mode whenever somebody pointed out that this mangaka didn’t plan his story ahead. From my observation, he IS such mangaka, considering those wasted materials. Hiromu Arakawa is an example of mangaka who planned her story ahead of time.

    1. Hiromu Arakawa is an amazing writer. She and Eiichiro Oda are probably some of the finest planners out there when it comes down to plot.

      On the other hand, Titan could well go down the Bleach sinkhole – once the plot is convoluted enough that things need to either be resolved or contradict each other. After the situation is too much of a tangled mess of plot threads, poor writers enter in a panic and everything turns to shit very quickly. I think it’s a tangible risk here.

      1. The most questionable plot in Titan is, what was the titan shapeshifter thinking? Smashing through the wall, but didn’t went further than that. Staying 5 years as spies among the humans without doing anything. Smashing through the wall once again, after that. What was that? Even if the mangaka thinks hard to come of an excuse later, I don’t think I can ever accept it. Because it more seems like, he didn’t think of it when he wrote early chapters. We all know how shounen mags work. At that time, he only thought of making as flashy as possible, in order to rake in readers’ votes. This is also confirmed by how insignificant the characters’ lives in early chapters are. They are practically killed as they are introduced. It’s for the sake of flashy-ness.

        1. I don’t know, I don’t think it’s that hard to explain. I doubt that the Titans actually want to destroy all the humans. I wouldn’t be surprised at all if it turns out that the king commands the titans to keep the population under control, or something like that.

    2. I think he probably planned some of the story ahead. I mean, the stuff with the father’s basement was there from the very beginning. There were hints that something was weird about Annie from the very as well. I guess it’s an open question how much he planned the stuff in the middle in advance, though.

      Regardless, I don’t think these details are a waste just because they aren’t used that heavily. It’s always good to have more background and details to make your world seem realistic. My objection is that the show takes so much time to communicate these details (particularly the long range scouting formation) which are not all that interesting. If they mentioned these details in passing I’d find it interesting. But the way they have someone flat out explain the intricacies of the formation over and over again is boring. We don’t need such a big focus on it.

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