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Attack on Titan Season 2 – First Impressions

Attack on Titan was originally a manga series written by Hajime Isayama. In April 2013, Production I.G. in collaboration with Wit Studio, a sister company, developed an anime adaptation that would go on to become a world-wide phenomenon. As such, this new season of the show has made it, without-a-doubt, the most anticipated anime series of the Spring season line-up. Please note: I won’t go into episodic detail to avoid spoilers for any newbies out there.

For anyone unfamiliar, the basic premise of Attack on Titan revolves around humanity that has been secluded behind gargantuan walls to protect them from gigantic humanoid, sexless creatures known as titans that like to eat humans. The world is broken up by different divisions, as such each wall is named in conjunction to the areas they protect. The further inwards you go, the more tightly protected the cities are supposed to be. Humans are currently trying to fight these extraordinary creatures, while simultaneously attempting to crack the mystery behind their existence.

When the first season came out four years ago, I was one of the people who watched, completely engrossed and addicted, desperately wanting to know what happened to these characters. I would be lying if I said that this show wasn’t one of my own anticipated ones.

The first episode picks up right where the first season ended, like exactly on point. This is nice because we aren’t left with any empty spaces having to fill in the details with assumptions and hopeless waiting to get a “recap” episode (applying to folks who haven’t read the manga). But overall, I felt that this episode was unsatisfying and disappointing.

The animation for starters were extremely sub-par. Since its creation in 2013, Wit Studio has come pretty far in animation quality. This is exhibited in the show Kabaneri of the Iron Fortress. So the fact that the animation for this season was on line with the first season, maybe even slightly worse, was discouraging. Due to the nature of the plot, specifically where we are within the storyline, there are also wasn’t very much action at all. Normally this wouldn’t be an issue for an opening, but toss in a lacklustre progression of any plot elements, we are left with an immensely low-quality start to what is a sensationally anticipated series.

Attack on Titan S2, Ep. #3 b

To be perfectly frank, I wouldn’t have minded if some of the episodes following number one ended up slow, or had a dip in quality. But come on, we’ve been left hanging in suspense for four damn years, something to satiate that impatience would have been nice.

With my bitching about the introduction aside, I will say this in conclusion: the second and third episodes have been very promising. Animation quality seems to be rising steadily with each new 24-minute showing, and the plot is starting to unfold on a much more gratifying pace. It’s still slow, but not in a bang-my-head-against the wall sort of manner. I have a feeling there will be some intense ass-kicking (or eating) with episode four, which will really show us what we can expect for the rest of the season.

You can watch Attack on Titan on Crunchyroll at Saturdays, 7:30am PST!

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