After the failure of their grand plan, the Survey Corps are left very much on the back foot in terms of their political support, and as this week's Attack on Titan begins we switch our view to take in the world of the Military Police.
More specifically, we initially follow events through Annie's eyes, as her group is tasked with escorting and protecting the Survey Corps as they move through town as part of a plan to "rehome" Eren as his future becomes uncertain once again. Compared to the earnest nature of those within the Survey Corps however, the Military Police couldn't be much more different - its high-ranking officers are only interested in gambling, drinking and playing games, while even the rank and file will happily sell off equipment on the black market to make easy money over and above protecting the populace.
Against this backdrop appears Armin, beseeching Annie for help in assisting Eren with escaping his current quandary. After some initial reticence she eventually agrees, and joins Armin, Eren and Mikasa as they seem to journey undetected to, and then beyond, the city walls. As this journey looks to take them underground however, Annie hesitates, claiming a fear of dark, enclosed spaces. Suddenly, the tension in the air from all parties becomes electric - Annie refuses to proceed any further, and the others are ever more insistent that she has to come with them. Something clearly isn't right here, and talk of aiding Eren's rescue soon turns to an entirely different topic - Annie's destruction of the captured Titans, and more importantly her role as the female Titan which tried to kidnap Eren. The game is up, but can Annie by captured before she uses her ability to wreak havoc?
Shorn of the action which has perhaps become this show's trademark it might be, but this was another suitably strong episode of Attack on Titan - I think the identity of the female Titan from the last story arc has been clear for a while now, but the manner in which this was built up to and then revealed was superb in the way it built up its tension while also peeling back another layer on the show's world, and there are still myriad questions left to be asked even in its wake. I just hope that the final couple of episodes are sufficiently well-paced to let the series close at a suitable juncture without either rushing to cram in details or slow to an unsatisfying crawl.