And on that day humanity received a grim reminder – of how awesome Attack on Titan is! Welcome back to the Multiversity Summer TV Binge. We will be diving, swooping, and swinging our way through Attack on Titan season two. Watch Ymir’s rebirth under a beautiful starry sky in season 2 episode 10: “Children.”
1. Connie’s Mom has got a lot going on
Team Hange Zoe arrives at Connie’s village and yep, she’s a titan. HUMANS GET TURNED INTO TITANS. That’s huge. So huge that I’m still processing. The science team hasn’t proven anything definitively, but narratively that’s clearly what’s up.
So what, all the titans have people in their necks? Why don’t they fall out when the titans’ necks are destroyed? Where do the titans come from originally? How does one turn a person into a titan? Why can some titans turn back into a human and some cannot? Or can they all turn back into humans? Can we cure the titans? Answer one question, you end up asking a thousand new ones.
2. Stump punch
Now that’s more like it. Eren may have infinite willpower, but he doesn’t do subtle well. What does he do? He tries to fight Reiner with no hands. It’s kind of cute, he impotently pummels the older boy until Reiner has had enough and kicks him into a tree.
Even more priceless are Ymir and Bertholt’s reactions. They sort of look at each other and look embarrassed. They all know who’s doing the kidnapping and who’s getting kidnapped, but at least some people know how to be civil about it. Really, that’s all the characters in a nutshell. Bertholt is sad to be here and resigned in his mission. Eren will fight, even when (especially when) it makes no sense to do so. Reiner will do what he has to, no matter how brutal. And Ymir? She’ll wait for her opening, and do what’s practical.
3. Little orphan Ymir
Here is is, the whole Ymir origin story, even if it is still a bit confusing. As a street orphan, Ymir was taken in by some adults and given food and shelter, not to mention her name. She told herself she had no choice in the matter, but her new adopted family made her into a princess.
We don’t know a lot about the underlying politics, but these people seem to be a cult looking to restore the original bloodline to the throne, even if that means totally lying about it. Hardened cynical street rat Ymir? She loves being a princess. Maybe that’s why it’s so heartbreaking that when the cops show up, the cult throws her right under the bus and lets her get taken away.
It also explains her fixation with Krista. When she heard that Krista was royalty, she decided to seek her out. In a way, Krista is what she wanted to be as a kid. In another way she’s the opposite. Krista is actually royalty, pretending to be a commoner. Ymir is a commoner masquerading as royalty. Their connection is more than love; it’s fate.
4. Sixty years a titan
The authorities stabbed every member of the Ymir cult and hurled them from the walls. Before she hit the ground, Ymir was somehow a titan. For years, Ymir let herself run around like an animal. It was her punishment. She ate Reiner and Bertholt’s friend. She didn’t care, she was in a haze. Until one night under the stars in a desert, she reverts to her human form.
I don’t exaggerate when I say the entire sequence is the most beautifully animated in the whole series. Ymir running, Ymir sleeping. Ymir giving up and allowing herself to be buried. The horror of Ymir eating a human. The beauty of the desert night sky, and Ymir’s brief moment of freedom, naked and alone. Breathtaking.
So Ymir went from orphan, to princess. She was executed and reborn as a monster. She awakened under the stars, but became a criminal. Then she learned that Krista was who she really wanted to be, and pursued her. It’s no wonder she reserves her loyalty for herself and her beloved. Everyone else in life has left her. Maybe that’s why she’s so willing to desert the army and kidnap her Krista. By putting her in her titan mouth.
Ew. But hey, I guess that’s love.