Holy Crap! I can’t tell you how much I love the internet, new media, geek culture and just freaking kind people who take a minute to help a chump like me out. Last week I asked for some assistance on finding an entry point into the world of Anime in hopes of expanding my Geek horizon. I have always been intrigued by Japanese Animation but never knew where to start. There are some tent poles in the genre, like Akira, but the overall universe seems infinite. So, with the help of Netflix I created a poll of the available sci-fi anime movies and asked which ones people recommended. A number of people responded and they all had the same sentiment. None of them! Instead, I received suggestions for several anime TV shows. I noted all of them but one that seemed to dominate the feedback was Attack on Titan. The title itself invoked an image of battles with monstrous beings, which is right up my alley. Hence, I decided to start there and so far I’ve been able to get through two episodes. (Yes, one week to make it through 48 minutes of television. Don’t judge me.) If you follow this blog, you know that I constantly assert how I am always late to the party, but I am always appreciative that I am still able to get in when I finally do arrive. This appears to be just another example.
Now, I do have some questions/observations. I would just like to take some time to recapture what I saw and maybe provoke some insight, answers, and/or debate. Also, let it be known that what I am doing below is something that I do during movies; raise up questions about the plot/the characters/the story. With that knowledge, you may not be shocked at the fact that no one will watch movies or TV with me anymore. Their loss. How are we going to grow if we don’t ask “why” sometime? Anyway, here are some of my questions for the first two episodes of Attack on Titans.
Note: I know I could just go online and find out the answers to some of these questions myself, but growing up as a kid pre-internet, I yearn for the days when it was okay to ask questions, no matter how silly and obvious, and illicit a helpful or spirited or even a life changing response.
First, are Mikasa and Eren related? I’m not following their lineage because I thought they were brother and sister but Eren seems more effected by his mom’s death than Mikasa does. Also, Mikasa refers to the mother as “You’re mother” when speaking to Eren. If they are not related, then why did Mikasa go to Eren’s house for a meal in episode one? It seemed like they were all having dinner. Is she an orphan? She doesn’t seem to be concerned about losing any loved ones? Or did they already explain it and I missed something? It’s very likely that’s the answer.
Is the big bad mamma-jamma who knocked down the wall in the first episode and then breaks through the gate in the second episode explained later on? He seems to be much bigger, smarter and stronger than the others. Is it really a Titan or something else? If it’s a Titan, is it some sort of evolutionary thing? I wonder how evolution would work with giants and would that explain why this one has exposed muscle. Is it because there is a limitative factor when it comes to flesh that even evolution can’t conquer. For example, only enough skin can be produced to cover creatures under 100 feet tall and once you hit over triple digits you are looking at some patchy spots. I wonder if that affects Vitamin D intake from the sun.
Can we just take a second to reflect on the concept of humans being eaten like bugs? That’s what these scenes remind me of. Like the show Fear Factor, where people have to eat cockroaches and grubs and you expect goo to squirt out. It happens in some of the scenes BUT not in every scene where someone gets munched on. I am going to assume there was plenty of discussion amongst the creative team on the proper way the human body would react if eaten by a much larger human. I also think a lot of pot was smoked or definitely large quantities of booze was involved. And how do you explain your workday to your family when you get home at night? “Ah, work was good. Johnson figured out that if a femur is bitten in just the right way that the bone marrow could possibly shoot out and up the nose. Man, that guy is good at figuring these things out.” Of course, three months later Johnson ends up in jail because he shows up to work wearing a human face as a mask and the creative meetings become very uncomfortable and less imaginative.
Here’s something. You have a 50 meter wall. You have some wall guards. Does nobody stand on the wall to see what the dealie is? I know, they start off by saying that nobody thinks the walls will ever be penetrated, a century of safety, yadda, yadda, yadda. But, I find it hard that people just don’t go up there to look. Who’s not up there taking in the forbidden land? How aren’t there young lovers escaping to the wall for some privacy? Hey, do you ever think anyone ever went to the top of the wall and tossed a coin over to see what would happen, like people do with pennies at the Empire State Building (which is over 306 meters tall by the way.) I mean, wouldn’t it be the perfect spot to go drinking, if you were a wall guard and you didn’t want to be seen as a slacker? Because if people did frequent the wall, then how was no one up top when the Titans attacked, screaming down a warning and giving people a heads up? Or were there people up there and yelling 160 feet down into a crowded city a silly idea because no one would hear you anyway? Either way, I would think there would be some sort of early warning system and if there was, man did it fail.
Hey, do you think these people had to deal with inbreeding issues? Not necessarily for the humans. I mean, yeah, it’s a much smaller population, so you have to assume after 100 years, there are some shared genes within the society. But I also mean for the animals. Were there any animals? I am not sure if there were any cattle or chickens or other creatures that were being used for food or beasts of burden. Because if there were then it would be more likely they would be forced into inbreeding in order to create more stock. I wonder what kind of issues that caused. Oh, and the crops. Do you think they knew to rotate their crops so they wouldn’t deplete the resources in the soil? Maybe that was part of the reason for the food shortage that was addressed in episode two. They do have bread and beer, so they need to have enough yeast, sugar and flour. I guess all they really need after that is some vegetables and they should be doing fine. You know what, I am willing to concede to the idea that if these people had enough smarts 100 years ago to build a 50 meter wall, then they have their agricultural skills down pat.
Okay, enough of the questions. I will hopefully find more time to watch a few episodes this week. Thanks to everyone who provided their feedback last week and if you managed to get through this entire post, I applaud you.
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