Attack on Titan – “Erwin Smith – 57th Expedition Beyond the Walls Pt. 4” Review

Previously on Attack On Titan:

Despite being chased by the Female Titan, Levi’s Squad continues to race through the forest. Eren puts his faith in Levi and the others and they all manage to escape when Erwin captures the Female Titan. Spoilers Ahead!

The Female Titan has been captured thanks to a trap set up by Erwin. Eren & the others recuperate out of sight while Levi goes back to interrogate the Titan with Erwin. Things seem to be going smoothly but right before her identity can be revealed, things go sideways when a swarm of Titans converge and eat the Female Titan. Erwin gives the retreat order thinking all evidence is lost, but things get chaotic when he reveals that the person who “pilots” the Female Titan was not found!

Attack on Titan proves every week that it is certainly one of the best anime to come out in the last couple of years. This episode is another slow burn (seems they’ve been rotating between this and action every week) but as usual it’s a good effort.

As the title explains this issue is mostly about Erwin, but it doesn’t give us his back story or anything like that. Instead it tells us how the other soldiers view him and how they think he got into the position he is in in the Survey Corps. Essentially what it boils down to is your typical “he makes the decisions that no one else can make” kinda deal, which is cliche yes but is also necessary in the world that Attack on Titan has created. Someone who is unafraid of the huge threat being presented by the Titans and will sacrifice what ever is necessary to take them down, which can actually be pretty damn scary at times.

As expected the Female Titan also gets development and we see more of her human side when she is captured. Erein wants to capture and interrogate her, Hanji wants to experiment on her, & Levi wants to kill her. These conflicting ideas are interesting to note as the prospects of these choices actually causes the Titan to feel fear. She exhibits some new abilities in this episode as well. When Erwin orders her hands cut off so they can get to her neck, she hardens her hands so they can’t be cut (Erwin likens this to the abilities of the Armored Titan) and when Levi threatens to cut her real arms and legs off, she lets out a chrill cry that lures all Titan within earshot to her to immediate swarm and devour her. This shows both her desperation  and her resourcefullness as she eliminates all avenues for answers.

Eren, the Spec Ops. Squad, and the rest of the new recruits have some screen time. Eren & Levi’s squad discuss why they weren’t let in on Erwin’s plan and the new recruits discuss just what Erwin’s plans are regarding the expedition. Mikasa & Sasha have a moment when the Titan’s begin to swarm. Mikasa moves to find Eren after the Female Titan’s yell, but Sasha advises against it citing that the cry was akin to a caged animal with nothing to lose. Back to Levi’s Squad they begin moving back to Levi but are soon intercepted by a mysterious soldier who kills Gunther! Could this be the person inside the Female Titan?

Gunther’s Death

“Erwin Smith” was another slow burn, but it certainly amped up quicker than other episodes like it. To see how others see Erwin is interesting and the added abilities of the Female Titan also open up more questions that will hopefully be answered later. The war to survive continues next week as The Spec Ops Squad deals with the rogue soldier.