The aftermath of last week’s storm of an episode has brought us to a quieter place. A place filled with reflection as Mikasa, Armin and Hannes recall the titan-less days. Welcome back to the crawl ladies and gents. Even Van Damme had to rest a little after firing off three jump roundhouse kicks, so it’s only natural the story had to hit the breaks. We all knew it was coming and it’s a truth I’m totally okay with.

There’s not much to say about the surface of this episode. Partially because it clearly wasn’t allocated the same kind of production budget, resulting in a pretty visually tragic fight scene. But also due to the fact that it was essentially a large alley-oop to propel the narrative into the next phase. Which again, is absolutely fine. These are the seeds that’ll grow into a compelling harem of flowers.

However, below this simple exterior is the mystery of Mikasa’s character and how it creates an interesting root that helps feed this garden of a series in a way that I don’t see often. Eren is your typical shonen protagonist, complete with a set of stock descriptions such as “he never gives up!” and, “he’ll keep resisting as long as he has strength!”. Proper average stuff. Except for the part where his female childhood friend is a badass who literally wins all his fights for him but is also in love with him. At least, I think she is?

Armin informs Mikasa she’s getting nerfed in the next patch.

Mikasa is an enigma. I’m sure I can go back into season 1 to remind myself of her exact relationship to Eren but I kind of like not remembering exactly what’s going on between the two. Eren clearly isn’t in love with her since he sees her as more of a sister, which leads to the possibility that her drive to be with him at all times is fueled by sibling protection syndrome.

Either way, it’s a treat to have such a strange dynamic. In any other show, Mikasa would be one of two things: A) Eren’s forgettable love interest that does nothing or B) Her character wouldn’t even exist. It might be my inner Joss Whedon that has a thing for female characters that are OP without a very good reason but there’s something special going on here for sure and I’m excited to see how it blossoms further.

Next week’s outing looks like it’ll be a doozie. I’m predicting a plethora of loud passionate monologues between testosterone filled men so we might need to come equipped with popcorn for this one.

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