Anime fans are already well aware of this, but Attack on Titan is one of the best shows on television right now, and perhaps even ever. I’ve already talked about the best episodes of Attack on Titan, and I even ranked every main titan based on how terrifying they are, but I honestly feel like I’m preaching to the choir now.
Not only that, but I also feel like I already need to revise those articles since we are now in Season 4, which is the final season, and the show has changed so dramatically since the first episode that it’s like a completely different series now. And even though I’m already a fan of anime like Demon Slayer to begin with, I still genuinely feel like Attack on Titan is still worth your time, even if you don’t watch anime. In all truths, it’s probably the best under-the-radar show on television for non-anime watchers right now, and I have five reasons why. Release the colossal titan!
Oh, and I’m going to try to keep this as light on spoilers as possible.
It Has One Of The Most Compelling And Complex Characters In Television History With Eren Yeager
Before Attack on Titan, I genuinely had a difficult time wondering whether Breaking Bad or The Wire was the best show ever. But now, I think Attack on Titan needs to enter that conversation, and it’s mainly because of its protagonist, Eren Yeager, as he swerves just as hard (If not harder) into villain territory as Walter White from Breaking Bad.
I’m not going to get too deep into it since I genuinely want you to watch the show for yourself, but our “hero,” Eren, starts off with a tragic backstory, and you root for him. But like Breaking Bad, you start to wonder where everything starts to go wrong. Eren Yeager grows throughout the story in many fascinating, and even disturbing ways, and it really says a great deal about the viewer when they ultimately decide when exactly Eren turns to the dark side, or whether he even does turn to the dark side at all. I can tell you this—I’ve debated with the “Eren has done nothing wrong” crowd for days upon days. It’s seriously that deep.
It Tells A Surprisingly Adult Story About Religious And Racial Tension
Shout out to the Ghost in the Shell, Evangelion, and Akira fans, but honestly, a lot of other anime is really kind of childish. Sure, a lot gets lost in translation when it comes overseas from Japan, but there is a great deal of anime that I definitely wouldn’t recommend to other adults. Here’s some perspective, most of my Seventh Grade students love anime, and they are very far from being adults.
But, while they love shows like My Hero Academia and One Piece, much fewer of them regularly watch Attack on Titan, as some of them find it too scary, while others find it too adult. And it is adult. The story behind why the titans even exist falls heavily into religious territory, with the story even pulling heavily from Norse mythology. But it’s not just that. It’s also about how religion can make us enemies, and how xenophobia creates tension, sometimes even of a racial nature. It’s a surprisingly deep show for what initially seemed like your typical hero-type anime. Dragonball Z and Sailor Moon, it’s not.
It Rewards You For Paying Close Attention
You know what show I kind of hate? Lost. And do you know why? It’s because Lost had one of the greatest first seasons I’ve ever seen, only to end in a way where you could tell the writers were figuring out the story while they were still writing it, which usually doesn’t bear great fruit (Just see the last seasons of Game of Thrones where the writers didn’t have the books to fall back on).
But Attack on Titan, from the very first episode, REWARDS you if you’ve been paying attention from the very beginning. Things that seemed strange or awkward early on, make COMPLETE sense later in the story. In fact, events from the very first episode not only play a part in these final episodes, but are even essential to fully understanding the entire story. Trust me, if you want a show that really rewards you for staying off your cell phone and paying close attention, then Attack on Titan is the show for you.
The Lore And Mythology Is Game Of Thrones-Worthy
I mentioned Game of Throne just a moment ago and how it kind of fell apart toward the end, but one of the reasons a great deal of people loved the show was because of the various Houses, like House Stark and House Targaryen. Even though it’s a fictional world, it’s nice to feel like a part of something and to choose sides, and Attack on Titan has something similar with Paradis Island with its three walls, and the Marleyans outside the walls.
But what makes this really sick is the mythology and deep lore behind the titans, and how both the Eldians who live within the walls, and the outside forces that live outside of them, have their own set of belief systems and royalty. It’s a show that’s so deep that you could seriously sink into all the text and lore beyond what is on the screen, which is phenomenal.
It Is Unlike Any Other Show On Television
Lastly, Attack on Titan is like no other show on television. There is a lot of fantasy, like The Witcher, and the Syfy network has a glut of science fiction shows. There are also plenty of dramas, and procedurals, and reality TV that you can enjoy. Hell, there’s even tons of anime out there that you can check out, but there is only one Attack on Titan. And it would be one thing if it was just about people fighting titans, or just about one side versus another, but combine all of those things together, and it’s one of the most unique shows to ever be on television.
And the best part is that it got better the longer it went on. The show has been compelling throughout, and I’m kind of jealous of the people who will soon just be able to binge the entire series and won’t have to wait week-by-week (or years like I had to wait from the first season to the second), as you’ll get to go through the entire saga within the next few months. Seriously, I envy some of you. You don’t know how hooked you’ll soon be if you take my word for it.
So, that’s it. You can currently watch the first season of Attack on Titan on Netflix, but you’ll have to catch the rest of the series on Hulu if you don't have other anime services. For more news on Attack on Titan or other great shows that may be under-the-radar, make sure to stop by here often.
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Rich is a Jersey boy, through and through. He graduated from Rutgers University (Go, R.U.!), and thinks the Garden State is the best state in the country. That said, he’ll take Chicago Deep Dish pizza over a New York slice any day of the week. Don’t hate. When he’s not watching his two kids, he’s usually working on a novel, watching vintage movies, or reading some obscure book.