Review: ‘Attack on Titan’ season four shocks fans with additional episode

Photo courtesy of Rotten Tomatoes

By Clay Thompson | Reporter

Going into the final episode of the second part of “Attack on Titan’s” final season, I felt like I was witnessing a part of history through the ending of an era. Unfortunately, that turned out to be untrue, as the final episode gave way to what can only be described as an epic April Fools’ Day prank, as a recent third part of the final season of the popular anime has been announced. However, that doesn’t mean that this finale episode wasn’t any good — let me tell you why.

First and foremost, I don’t really need to speak about the acting quality of the anime at this point. Longtime fans of the show already know the voice acting has always been top tier and this last episode does not disappoint either, with plenty of action-packed and emotional moments to spare.

What I do want to point out first is the placement of the episode. This final episode is mostly a flashback, as a few have been in this second part of the final season. Although unlike cliched and dull flashback episodes, all of the ones this season — today’s finale included — were engaging, as they also revealed some truly jaw-dropping and heartbreaking moments as well.

What I felt the finale has also done is truly cement its themes and messages about historical oppression. The third season of “Attack on Titan” threw fans for a loop with one of perhaps the most left-field twists out there, creating a very interesting and controversial discussion about historical oppression and revenge. While being a very heavy theme for most audiences, “Attack on Titan” chooses to it tackle head-on. It’s clear the final episode of part two is no exception to the subtle yet telling ways it addresses those issues.

The factor I love most about this anime is the fighting and battles. The finale, while brief, has the start of the ending battle between mankind and the Titans known as The Rumbling, which will physically and metaphorically shake the very Earth to its core. The beginning of the battle is amazingly animated by studio MAPPA, and sets a strong tone for the epic fight that is to come in part three.

Whether fans are excited or disappointed by the final episode of part two of season four of “Attack on Titan,” it cannot be denied that the anime has done a strong job of setting up character motivations, arcs, thematic struggles and a fierce final battle, all in the span of almost half an hour.