Anime Attack on Titan Cover

Published on May 5th, 2014 | by Anthony Price

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What Is Attack on Titan?

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For those of you that have ever attended a Comic Con, there may be some dim awareness of the behemoth that is Attack on Titan.  But for the layman, those three words would mean very little.  So, what is this little nugget of awesomeness that has cosplayers around the globe frantically trying to build a replica 3D Manoeuvre Gear.  Well, allow me to educate you.

Erin with a Titan

Attack on Titan is arguably the biggest shonen anime of 2013 and it’s continued to grow in strength throughout 2014 in the West.  But what is it exactly?  It’s an anime series based on the manga by Hajime Isayama serialized in Bessatsu Shōnen Magazine (So far there are 12 volumes to buy).  Set in a world where humanity lives inside cities surrounded by enormous walls due to the Titans , gigantic humanoid creatures who devour humans seemingly without reason (See above).  The story centers around Eren Yeager, his adoptive sister Mikasa Ackerman, and their friend Armin Arlert, whose lives are changed forever after the appearance of a colossal titan brings about the destruction of their home town and the death of Eren’s mother.  Vowing revenge and to reclaim the world from the Titans, Eren, Mikasa and Armin join the Recon Corps, an elite group of soldiers who fight Titans outside the walls.  All very exciting stuff and full of plot twists that keep it fresh and audiences watching.  One thing this isn’t is predictable.

A picture of Erin.

But it isn’t all about plot.  What drew me to Attack on Titan was the amazing visuals.  The animation is absolutely stunning with the rendering style favoring thick lines and an earth tone color scheme; scenes with vibrant colours are limited, though the effort by Wit Studio (an offshoot of Production I.G) does an impressive job of making even browns stand out.  The action scenes are also particularly impressive; Erin and his fellow corps members zipp through the sky using the 3D Manoeuvre Gear to pull off death defying, acrobatic moves that would make even Spider-Man wince.  Mix that with a cracking rock soundtrack and you have a real visceral thrill ride that culminates in a plot twist that even I didn’t see coming.

Erin fighting.

Despite all of it’s merits, Attack on Titan does still have a few faults.  Some of the set pieces get really dragged out over the course of a few episodes, which does slow the pacing down too much and at times the characters can be overly emotive and lack subtlety, which is saying something for this type of anime.  Also, although still stunning, not all of the scenes are animated.  Whether this is a stylistic choice, or whether it’s because rumours regarding scheduling issues are true, remains a point of debate.  However, despite these points, Attack on Titan is still awesome and it’s faults are easily overlooked when the action begins.  Hopefully there will be a second season around the corner, so if you haven’t seen this yet, I would highly recommend you catch up. Fast.

Until next time…Keep consuming.

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