The Con Man is Revealed! – Shingeki no Kyojin S3 Episode 16 Review

Commander Erwin Smith’s true goals are revealed, while Beast Titan Zeke pitches a perfect game. This is a recap and discussion for Attack on Titan S3, Ep 16.

Check out last week’s Episode 15 Review here.

Attack on Titan really loves its cliffhangers.

I would like to think that this is a redemption arc for Erwin Smith, who lied and conned the recruits into giving their hearts until the very end.

Let’s give a round of applause to this absolute madman, who in the end gave up his dreams and decided it was all for naught.

He would never discover what was inside Grisha Yeager’s basement, he would never avenge his father, and he would lead another group of bright-eyed kids to their deaths.

All jokes inside, I love morally grey characters. Did Commander Erwin do some questionable things in pursuit of an (ultimately) unattainable goal? Yes.

But in the end, did he still lie to himself about it? No.

And I can totally respect that. How many characters hide behind false bravados, taking their secret inner thoughts to the grave? I respect that he was a hypocrite, who relied on his charisma and analytical mind to make a life in the hellhole that is… the walls.

Shingeki no Kyojin is great at showing “the human heart in conflict” so to speak.

Instead of the youngsters being pumped for a meaningless death, we see their struggle. We see newer recruits like Marlo, who left his cushy Military Police position to come to the front lines – only to die, what? Weeks later?

The charismatic Erwin Smith, 13th Commander of the Survey Corps -  leading his soldiers into a final suicide charge. Attack on Titan Season 3, Episode 16
The charismatic Erwin Smith, 13th Commander of the Survey Corps – leading his soldiers into a final suicide charge. Attack on Titan Season 3, Episode 16

It is so unfair, but understandable given the world they live in.

Sometimes, things really are just that bleak and rather than lying down and dying – you can fight until your last breath. Even if Erwin was lying through his teeth to hype them up before sacrificing his dream, he was convincing enough to quell their fear even for a moment.

So then you just have a bunch of young people, nervous, afraid, probably pissing themselves – fighting an enemy they know they cannot win against.

But still they continue on, even if in the end it could all fail. I admire the Survey Corps strength, perseverance, and drive.

Next week is when all of the fun begins, so I’ll leave this review here.

Levi Ackerman has a great vantage point of the Beast Titan's destruction. Attack on Titan Season 3, Episode 16
Levi Ackerman has a great vantage point of the Beast Titan’s destruction. Attack on Titan Season 3, Episode 16

What do you think about Erwin Smith’s suicide charge?

Was Erwin ultimately selfish, or selfless because he gave up his goal and died?

Do you feel like the Survey Corps could have defeated the Beast Titan at its former strength before the 104th joined?

Leave your thoughts in the comment section below, I’d love to hear from you! Also be sure to follow us for more Shingeki no Kyojin Season 3 Reviews!

We are also creating East Asian pop culture inspired designs for fellow fans, Visit our Redbubble store if you have a chance – you get cool gear, and it helps support the blog!      

☆ In Asian Spaces   

次のエピソード: Levi Ackerman is Humanity’s Greatest Strength!

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Author: In Asian Spaces

I write in my personal time and I haven't published much at all. I don't know if that qualifies me as a writer or not, but I'd like to change that. I have a deep passion for travel, cinema and (mainly) East Asian things, but I plan on writing various things to keep it spicy. Let's prosper together ~ よろしくおねがいします。

4 thoughts on “The Con Man is Revealed! – Shingeki no Kyojin S3 Episode 16 Review”

  1. It was a wonderfully dramatic moment and it was carried off beautifully. In reality there’s no way I would follow someone like Erwin. His speech and reasoning was full of holes and there’s no way I’d charge to my death after such a speech, but it makes for a wonderful moment in a narrative.

    Liked by 1 person

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