Brave Volunteers Amongst Us – Attack on Titan S4 Ep 9 Review

This is a review of Episode nine of Attack on Titan Season 4, the Final Season. Titled “Brave Volunteers”.

Check out last week’s episode review here

This was such a nice, laid back and chill episode.  

I really enjoyed it. 

I couldn’t stop smiling at Yelena and Niccolo being in the same frames.  

My two new favorite characters have arrived on the scene! I feel like shouting that from the rooftops, haha. ☺ 

As with my Shingeki no Kyojin manga reviews, I think I’m going to refer to my favorite female volunteer by her nickname – Chaos Goddess Yelena.  

Because Chaos Goddess Yelena is the Marleyan volunteer that the Survey Corps deserves. 

I repeat, Chaos Goddess Yelena is the Marleyan volunteer that the Survey Corps deserves. 

I just really love the way MAPPA adapted her. The ambiguous voice, the tall graceful stature, the devious theatrics she pulls off where you can’t really read her movements – absolute perfection. 

Sasha Meets Niccolo

Then we had Lover Boy Niccolo!  

Look at this beautiful Marleyan chef! Attack on Titan the Final Season Episode 68
Look at this beautiful Marleyan chef! Attack on Titan the Final Season Episode 68

(And I’m not going to lie, I did shed a tear or two during the flashback scenes between he and Sasha.) 

With Sasha’s death, Connie lost his twin and Niccolo lost his reason to live. 

…He just looked so defeated.  

MAPPA has been doing an incredible job with the cast’s eyes.  They convey so much emotion despite the dialogue already being top notch. 

But enough of me gushing over these lovely two volunteers, let’s get into the important stuff. 

Sasha Asks Onyankopon Why He’s Black

So it may have seemed subtle, but a lot happened this episode. A lot of characters put their ideology on the table, and the divide has already formed. 

When Sasha asks Onyankapon why his skin is so dark, he begins to tell a story about his beliefs. And that the creator thought the world would be more interesting with different types of people.  

Onyankopon tells the Paradis Eldians about their creation story, before catching Yelena's face. Attack on Titan the Final Season episode 9
Onyankopon tells the Paradis Eldians about their creation story, before catching Yelena’s face. Attack on Titan the Final Season Episode 9

…You can tell how happy Onyankopon is telling the Eldians on Paradis this, and even Armin asks who created them – to which Onyankopon alludes to Ymir Fritz, the founding titan. 

It was very subtle, but Onyankopon stops gushing when he catches (what is presumed to be) a disapproving look from Chaos Goddess Yelena. 

Was he getting too chummy with the Eldians? Or, did Chaos Goddess Yelena disapprove of his ideology? 

Onyankopon is on to you, Yelena. Attack on Titan season 4 episode 9
Onyankopon is on to you, Yelena. Attack on Titan Season 4 Episode 9

Either way, pay attention to and remember that scene. It’s going to be important later. 

While everyone else in the core Squad Levi is enamored by the new play things brought from Marley, Eren is literally the only one still focused.  

Sure, Mikasa has her gun ready, but Armin is just sitting in a relaxed position. 

Eren is the only one training.  

Eren is the only one thinking about the reality to their happy-go-lucky ‘what if we could all be friends’ scenario. He is the one who takes the first shot.  

Armin covers his ears at the sound of gunfire.  

“…then that would make us the devils who rule the world with fear.” (paraphrase) 

The Attack Titan then reminds his friends that the world is right to fear them, as they are essentially latent monsters that can turn into titans at any time. Marley has done a great job over the century reminding the world just what spinal fluid does to Eldian bodies.  

Continuing on, Eren brings up the point that making cordial acquaintances with a few Marleyan prisoners on the island does not equate to the rest of the world continuing to tolerate their existence.  

(Remember Udo’s speech a few episodes ago?) 

Although, I don’t really think Mikasa and Armin heard this through their sheer naivety and optimism.

Eren Tries to Defend Paradis Island

Friendly reminder – I am an Eren supporter through and through, until the very end of this series and maybe even beyond that.  I will always be on Eren, and his faction’s side in these anime episode reviews. 

When Eren says that they need to be prepared to buy the island time, he takes a shot at the Marleyan coffee tin that is a cut and juxtaposition to Sasha getting shot. 

(This also first reminded me of the coffee from Zeke, Bertholdt, and Reiner being on the wall before the battle to retake Shiganshina in season 3.) 

Which then brings us to our next argument, or rather problem that is going to continue to exacerbate through the series – “needing more time”. 

The issue of those who act on the time they have left, versus those who sit idly twiddling their thumbs speaking of false friendships and talk no jutsu while actively squandering the time they had left to do something productive. 

I don’t mean to get this hype so early on – er, rather it is technically the midpoint of the series – but you probably get my meaning.  

It just pisses me off that we can begin to see the cracks on the people of Paradis’ once shared ideology and instead of being happy Eren brought them more time by acting alone, all the Survey Corps does for the most part is reprimand him. 

What else happened that lead to this point will be revealed, but maybe seeing it animated…hearing the OST, and voice acting will convince the still nay-sayers who think Eren is crazy and should have just laid down and died that in the end…he truly did the right thing for Paradis Island. 

Again, if you are an anime only you have no clue what I’m talking about by using that line, but we’ll get there. 

In time. 

Oh, and Armin spends a lot of time talking to his pet rock of a girlfriend Annie, and holding a hermit crab shell. 

So, he (essentially) talks to a brick wall, and holds a symbol of a creature that can’t live without its shell. 

I mean if there’s anything you need to know about the current timeskip Armin, that’s it… 

But, let me wrap this review up before I go on a rant about Eren’s little friends and Armin’s rock of a girlfriend. 

Shokugeki no Sasha (2021)
Shokugeki no Sasha (2021)

(RIP Sasha.) 

What do you think about the newly introduced Anti-Marleyan Volunteers? Are they needed on Paradis Island?

Do you think Gabi and Falco look depressed in prison? And will they ever escape and go back to Marley?

Are Hanji and crew being too naïve about the threat to Paradis Island, and the harsh treatment of Eldians around the world? 


What do you think the extent of Sasha and Niccolo’s relationship was during that three-year timeskip? Were they dating?

Attack on Titan the Final Season Episode 68
Huh…interesting foreshadowing here. Attack on Titan the Final Season Episode 68

Leave your thoughts in the comment section below, I’d love to hear from you! Also be sure to follow us for more weekly Attack on Titan the Final Season reviews!

We are also creating AOT-inspired merchandise for fellow fans, drop by our Redbubble store if you have a chance – you get cool gear, and it helps support the blog!   

Recommended: (spoilers) Hallucigenia – the Primordial Spinal Creature from Attack on Titan – Anime Anthology 

Recent Shingeki no Kyojin manga reviewch 137

次のエピソード: The Courtesy You Expect

☆ In Asian Spaces  

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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。

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