Sunday, 7 April 2013

Attack on Titan - Episode 1

It's the year 845 in the Shinganshina District, and after an entire century of being protected from the mysterious yet horrifying and deadly beings known as "Titans" by the fifty foot walls which ensconce them, it's fair to say that this pocket of humanity has become rather complacent in their relative security.

With those guarding the border spending their time eating and drinking, and while the Recon Corps who venture outside to look into how to defeat the Titans are seen largely as little more than suicidal maniacs, there are few who want to concern themselves with the Titan threat and fewer still who actually have any thirst to venture outside - unsurprising, since any discuss along those lines is banned by the government anyhow.

This brings us to out protagonist, Eren, who sees things rather differently - he views the walls around his home as a cage rather than a shield and wants nothing more than to join the Recon Corps, much to the distress of his mother in particular, and the disappointment of his adoptive sister Mikasa.  For all of his big talk of stepping out into the wider world however, Eren isn't really ready for what happens next - the appearance of a massive Titan who rips a whole in Shinganshina's walls with ease, allowing his fellow being to run amok amongst the human populace.

So begins one of the spring's big-hitters, and in some style too - after placating those looking for non-stop action with a little taste of what is come, we're treated to an episode largely comprised of scene setting which nonetheless proves to be compelling; in particular, it's human angle on a populace that is complacent for the most part aside from the traumatised survivors of the Recon Corps gives us a quick yet satisfying view of the world, and the first scenes of the Titan attack are brutal yet framed in a way to ensure that they're emotionally powerful as well as horrifically violent.  Judging by this first impression the series has everything it needs in place to live up to the reputation of its source material, and I for one can't wait to see more of it.

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