You Should Be Watching: Attack On Titan

Name: Attack on Titan / Shingeki no Kyojin (lit. 'Advancing Giants')
Genre: Dark Fantasy, Dystopian, Tragedy
Studio: Wit Studio
Original Artist: Isayama Hajime

Hi there, my name is Amy and this is my first post here on Alt:Mag. I just wanted to introduce myself before getting stuck in. I hope you enjoy my future articles, and I'm excited to be here! With that said, let's get started.
Attack on Titan (AoT), or Shingeki no Kyojin, is an anime that aired over the Spring/Summer seasons of 2013, and over the time it was airing, quickly became one of the most popular anime produced in years. With a score of 8.9 on IMDB, it's not hard to see the potential. So what is it about? One hundred years ago, in a medieval-esque setting, giant Titans suddenly appeared, devouring humans and nearly wiping out the entirety of Mankind. Luckily, humanity was able to cage themselves inside giant brick walls, successfully keeping the titans out for one hundred years. But, when a single, monstrously huge titan appears and breaks a hole in the wall, all hell breaks loose.
Attack on Titan follows a young boy, Eren Yeager, and his friends as they enlist into the army dedicated to learning about, and, hopefully, killing the Titans.

Eren, Mikasa, Armin, and the rest of the soldiers.

This anime comes under the 'Dark Fantasy' category for good reason. It is moderately gory, and not afraid to shock the viewer. Some of the Titans are downright terrifying, and mankind's struggle against them seems pretty futile, with many soldiers viewing it as a hopeless battle with no real victory in sight. It's a very real depiction of human souls in distress - many are terrified, doubtful, and contemplating their own seemingly imminent deaths in a very serious way. This is not a heroic anime where a Super Soldier swoops in and saves the day - this is an anime about a very realistic struggle not only against giant, man-hungry creatures - but against human nature, and, at times, yourself.

So what makes Attack on Titan such a great anime to watch? I'll tell you:

  • Well-rounded Characters

Each character comes with their own very specific set of flaws, goals, and motivations. No two characters are alike, and each person goes through a pretty decent amount of character development before the final episode ends. They don't feel like stereotypes either - the best soldier in the army is a 5'2" thug with a cleaning obsession. The main character is kind of psychotic. And his adoptive sister is fiercely overprotective, while being so good at killing titans that she is "worth 100 soldiers" and her speciality is "slicing up flesh". Sound good so far? Read on.

  • Dynamic Animation

Due, mostly, to the use of 3DMG (aka 'Three Dimensional Manoeuvre Gear' - a gas powered propulsion system combined with wires, used to get around easily while fighting), the animation in Attack on Titan is b-e-a-u-tiful. It's obvious that a lot of time, thought, and effort went into animating these particular scenes. But there's more to it than just high powered action. Even the calmer scenes are very well animated, which brings me to my next point.

  • Beautiful Art

Yes, the scenery. I can honestly say I've never seen an anime with such beautiful background art, nice composition, camera work, and lighting. The visual aspects are stunning. If you don't watch it for anything else, watch it just for the eye candy.

  • Mind Blowing Storylines

"And on that day, Mankind received a grim reminder..."

The world of Attack on Titan is massive and complex, not to mention pretty unique. What kind of guy thinks up man-eating giants, 50 foot walls, and gas powered harnesses... and combines them with characters who are pretty much children? Hajime Isayama, that's who. 
The different facets of AoT's plot are really amazing to behold, and very well thought out to boot. There are fake religions, different factions of the army all with different jobs and different personalities, vast maps and intricate details. Not to mention, so many plot twists you could break your neck. All of this together makes the story engaging and keeps you at the edge of your seat through each of the 25 episodes.

  • Kick-ass Opening Titles


These are the kinds of openings that make you wanna go out and kick stuff, maybe do a bit of parkour. I once set Guren no Yumiya as my alarm tone, and let me tell you: nothing gets you out of bed in the morning like titan-killing music. Trust me. The second opening, Jiyuu no Tsubasa (Wings of Freedom) is just as epic, and so are the end credits. I've never skipped over either opening!

  • Comedy Gold

Despite this being one of the darkest and most despair-filled anime I've seen, there's actually a surprising amount of humour in it. And, as you might expect, quite a lot of it is dark. If you like puns, lewd jokes, bad language, and physical comedy, you're in for a treat. In between scenes of gory deaths, of course.

And, if I haven't convinced you yet, here's my final point:


Giant, naked, man-hungry titans, who vary between badass and bizarre? Count me in!

So, there it is.
You're gonna go and watch it now, right?

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