Welcome back to my continued episodic review series for the final season of Attack on Titan. We’re looking at episodes 11 and 12 today, and while they deal with different characters, I do think there’s an overarching theme: the price of peace.
For Falco and Gabi, peace has always been at the expense of the ‘Island Devils’. You can see that Falco is perhaps a little less steadfast in this. Much like we’ve seen with Reiner, he’s committed to his ideals of saving people but is beginning to see that not all Eldians on Paradis Island are bad people. While that seems to be a source of torment for Reiner, Falco seems like he’s using this to help him and Gabi escape.
Gabi, on the other hand, is more volatile than her cousin Reiner. She has an anger in her that doesn’t seem to want to die out. Even when faced with the undeniable fact that, even if past generations of Eldians slaughtered people, those alive now are mostly innocent, hardworking people. I do wonder how she’d react if she realised she was on a ranch owned by the family of Sasha, the soldier she killed. A lot of her anger right now seems directed at how much she has been betrayed. By Zeke, by the other soldiers that defected, and now maybe even by those who told her what the Eldians on the island are like.
That’s not to say that Paradis Island is a true paradise either. There are members of the Scout regiment, led by Floch, that are entirely loyal to Eren. This became a major source of unrest here. They leaked the details of Eren’s incarceration to the general population, and that, in turn, led to mass demonstrations outside the military HQ. The demonstrators were then further emboldened when the group assassinated Premier Zachary, leading to Eren’s escape.
This particular group were not just Scouts either. Yelena as, unsurprisingly, part of the operation and the fear now is that the plan goes much further than they know. Especially as Yelena had worked hard to get defectors jobs in unusual locations, such as large restaurants. The exact restaurant that the Blouse family are taking Falco and Gabi too, in fact. For the Yeagerists, peace can apparently only be obtained by tearing down the current command structure and placing the half-brother Titan Shifters in control.
Meanwhile, the core military is certain that Eren is being manipulated by Zeke. While Yelena may believe that the world is changing at the hands of two brothers, it’s really only one brother that’s leading the revolution. The unfortunate side effect of this is that combatting the Yeagerists would lead to bloodshed and the loss of many more lives. To that end, Dot Pyxis suggests that the price of peace is surrender.
That’s not going to be easy, because not only are they all against this in principle, but there are also clear divisions within the military itself. Zachary wanted to take the Founding Titan from Eren without the Scouts knowing. Mikasa and Armin still want to save Eren from the path he’s on. Then there are the soldiers simply doing their jobs. And all of that is complicated by the Azumabitos who are now witnessing the New Eldian Empire collapsing in on itself, but not picking a side because they simply want to access the island’s resources.
Finally, we have the remaining Titan Shifters loyal to Marley. Marley had planned to wait six months to attack, gathering a large world-wide union to assault Paradis Island. As the Shifters point out though, Zeke no doubt hopes that will be the case, so he can make plans. Instead, they push for a pre-emptive early attack with the Armoured, Cart and Jaw Titans. By the end of the second of these two episodes, we can see that the infiltration has begun. Peace for them means more killing, and it means acting quickly, maybe even recklessly.
So, peace is what the core characters want. More specifically, peace for the Eldians. How each of them tries to achieve it differs, but there’s no doubt that peace won’t come in peacefully.
But those are just my thoughts. What did you think of this episode? Let me know in the comments below.