An Attempt to Get Into Anime with Attack On Titan


As big a nerd as I am, I’ve never really gotten into anime. My only real brushes with the genre have been a few scattered half-seasons of Dragonball Z, the original Pokemon cartoon, a few movies like Akira, and more recently, The Last Airbender and it’s Korra sequel. I know half of these aren’t “real” anime, so I remain a relative stranger to the genre.

That said, an old dog can learn new tricks, and I’ve been hearing a lot of great things about a new anime out this year called Attack on Titan. Who am I to dismiss it because it’s a genre I don’t usually dabble in? When I saw that it was streaming on Netflix, I jumped right in, and devoured the first and only season in the course of the past week.

My praises or criticisms of the show may also in turn be about anime in general, so forgive my ignorance if that’s the case. Perhaps Titan can be a case study for me about the good and bad of the genre, and you can tell me how right or misguided I may be.

Titan appealed to be with an attention-grabbing concept right off the bat. In the past (or future?) a society lives behind three concentric rings of giant walls. The reason being is that the land outside is populated by Titans, giant humanoid monsters that range from twenty to a few hundred feet tall, and enjoy eating tiny regular people as their one and only pastime.

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  1. THIS IS ON NETFLIX!? Look at me waiting for the DVD release like a dumbass. Imma go watch this as soon as I make my internet rounds. Thanks, man. Breaking Bad is going to have to wait, I guess.

    Season length isn’t really an issue in most anime aside from a few titles like Bleach and DBZ. A lot of seasons are only 12-13 episodes these days and the ones that make it to 26 don’t typically lag much.

  2. Yea, pretty much hit the nail on the head with the review. And yea, most of your complaints do extend to anime in general. The lull from episode 8 to 16 is most people’s biggest critique, but I still found enjoyment from them and I feel it needed a lull after the insane pacing the first 8 episodes or so took on

  3. You should give Deathnote a shot. It’s only around 30+ episodes and the writing/plot (particularly in the first part) were some of the best that I’ve seen in a tv show!

  4. Not all anime titles have running time issues. Look at Hetalia, for instance. There are currently 5 seasons of this series and roughly 60-something episodes to watch, but here’s the catch: each episode is only 5 minutes long. This means that if you wanted to, you could sit through a marathon of the entire series and only spend about 5 hours or so! Another neat thing is that the episodes don’t necessarily have a specific order. Only the very first few episodes revolve around a central plot, and then it becomes more randomized (though some episodes also have loose side plots that are reserved for the second half of subsequent episodes).

    At the same time, Hetalia has its own flaws in terms of material, especially around the 4th season. Because it was assumed that the 4th would also be the final, the last few episodes were kinda rushing to wrap things up at the last minute. The “movie” (if you can even call it that) is about an hour long, but most of it is just filler, taking sketches directly from older episodes and plopping them anywhere for no rhyme or reason. After a while of inactivity, another animation group came in and dramatically revamped the art style for the unexpected 5th season, breathing new life into the series.

    The most basic summary I can give you of what Hetalia is like is this: all the major countries are personified by their common stereotypes (Yes, even Japan) and crack comedy results from it…oh, and there might also be history in there somewhere. The manga that the anime is based on takes various historical events (again in no particular order) and presents them in a way that is easier to understand, though it won’t replace a history book. It’s also not always a comedy, as there are some sad moments in history that play out through the characters in a respectable manner (and some of the more gruesome/horrific moments are pretty much ignored).

    If you just want to turn your brain off and not think too much while watching a show, this might be worth checking out, but it’s not for everyone. It’s also important to note that the vast majority of characters are guys, so there might be mild “gay” moments here and there, but it’s all played for humor.

  5. Do not watch this show! I am being serious. It is not the show to start out Anime. It has nagging pacing issues and very little happens at all with the story and it has zero ending or closure. An interesting concept and beautiful visuals are wasted on bad characters (sorry but nothing original here if you ever watched another anime) and it just being a mecha anime in disguise.
    Try Cowboy Bebop or FLCL or something wacky first before you move on to shows like this. Or if you wanna start something crazy try a Gundam show. Or the berserk movies. Or Steins Gate.

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