Check out my review of SnK Chapter 123 here.
So starting off this chapter was of course great, but felt like setup for the most part. In reality, all of this took place in the time it took Eren to partially form his massive titan. The flames from the mindless titan deaths and various fires obscure the field to see where exactly he went.
Are Eren and Zeke fighting in the PATHS dimension right now? Is it two on one, Ymir and Eren vs Zeke? Is Zeke dead, and this is why Eren couldn’t control Zeke’s mindless titans created from his titan juice cocktail? Did Eren just expect his friends to fight the mindless titans and not die long enough to see the destruction of the world?
So many unanswered questions right now.
Chapter 124 begins with Mr. Leonhart reacting to the PATHs Founder message and ends with Annie’s awakening. The ghost of Bertholdt jumps out of Armin before Mikasa or anyone else can even realize what this means. It seems Armin did indeed ignore Eren’s advice to stop letting Bertholdt’s will influence him. At least Mikasa discarded the red scarf (the red string of fate?), meaning she no longer wants to take orders from her host Eren.
This can’t be good, for whatever the future holds for the Eldian people of Paradis. I have to wonder – can Armin even transform anymore?
“All of that hardening…will come undone”
If Armin (and by proxy, Bertholdt) could barely transform multiple times as it is, what can he actually do now? Reiner doesn’t seem to be healing from his wounds. He might actually get his precious wish of dying, provided he endures a bit more suffering to satisfy his daily quota. Hey, maybe Annie will finish him off when she comes to and Reiner will have endured enough suffering to satisfy Isayama and he can finally die in peace.
Or…maybe that’s too far-fetched of a theory.
After all, what is Attack on Titan without Reiner Braun suffering?
Did anyone else laugh in the irony that Gabi absolutely did not care that her cousin was dying? He is too weak to even sit up, but she just left him some bread and water, tied up her hair, and decided to go find her new boytoy Falco? And when Armin and Miksasa ask Gabi about the very important detail that the Armoured Titan no longer has Armor, Gabi is literally like “who cares, that’s not important right now – where is Falco?”
Isayama is spectacular at writing these characters. In some moments, I forget Gabi is just a child. I never forget that she is a brainwashed Marleyan warrior candidate, a child soldier. But in moments like this, where she doesn’t care about important intel that another solider would, but instead just wants to find her friend has to make me smile. Gabi said that she was done fighting, but I honestly don’t believe her.
Her entire identity is that of a soldier. Admitting that everything she has done thus far was for praise, to be a “good Eldian” in the eyes of her (adopted) mother country. Although, I don’t quite agree with Niccolo stating they all have devilish ways within them. Yes, they might, but Gabi is actually a little monster. And I don’t say this with malice or hatred, but that child has been so indoctrinated that her conditioned mentality automatically takes over in a pinch.
Locked up in a jail holding cell? Murder the guards and escape.
Someone has shown you kindness but your cover has been blown? Try to murder them with a pitchfork.
You need to find Falco and a titan is in your way preventing you from acquiring help through good people? Blow the titans head off with a massive sniper rifle and remove the obstacle.
Like I do truly believe that Gabi believes she is done fighting. I believe she wants to believe that, but when push comes to shove and things get tough she will revert back to that Marleyan warrior candidate.
I did enjoy the appearance of Sasha’s ghost to Kaya during the titan slaying. That was a nice touch. Hopefully Connie isn’t dead or died on the way back to Ragako. As much as I like him, I don’t things will work out as planned. We don’t even know if titans, aside from Eren, can transform anymore. Or if the Curse of Ymir is even still a thing. There is no guarantee that Connie’s mom eating Falco will turn her back into a human. There is no guarantee Falco will be so out of it that he allows Connie to feed him to his mother. There is no guarantee Connie himself won’t slip up in his wave of passion and get eaten, hurt, mauled, or killed instead.
That being said though, I understand where Connie was coming from. The world is ending, why can’t he save his mom?
Pixis’ send off by Armin was wonderful, despite Armin not being a “stunning beauty”. Unless he is, and Pixis always intended to go out that way – gender be damned. Who can tell?
Hopefully this is the last time the squad has to deal with titans. With the mystery gone, the titans appear very human and Armin immediately recognized Pixis. They had to kill their comrades, hopefully for the last time. Hopefully, the world can be at peace once more.
And hopefully, Annie doesn’t try anything with that ring. I sincerely hope she is not that dumb to immediately transform, not realizing that things have changed. The cadets had to take down Bertholdt and murdered him. They had to take down Reiner. Sasha died. A mass genocide of the world is currently happening. The people of Paradis are aware of their identities as Eldians.
Annie absolutely cannot transform, go for a light jog, fight Eren, and try to climb up a wall again like she did seasons ago – years ago in the mangaverse. The thunder spears would cut her down before she could even gasp for air at the new sight of Shiganshina.
I could go on all day about this chapter, but I think I’ll end it here.
There are so many questions, but let’s choose three (lol) to focus on:
- What is Eren’s goal now that the wall titans are on the move and “all the hardening” has been undone?
- Why is Floch arresting the volunteers? How can Eldia have an empire if the rest of the world is dead? Wouldn’t they be the only empire by default?
- What do you think is going on with the titan shifting powers? Have the abilities been taken away? Why or why not?
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 in 2020!
☆ In Asian Spaces