Attack On Titan’s four year wait proves to be worth its weight in gold with a more focused story boasting some great twists and turns along the way. With a single plot weaving through all the episodes, it feels better paced and more action packed than the first season in 2013, while keeping the same episodic format as before. The intelligently written story does lead to more cliffhanger endings and this over-reliance hinders the series which ends with parts of the story resolved but large chunks of the plot agonisingly left untouched.
The story picks up where last season left off, with the characters reeling from the fight with the female titan. It doesn’t take long before a new threat surfaces that threatens to be the toughest foe the humans have faced yet. As the season progresses, we learn the answers to key questions including the identities of the Colossal and Armoured Titan that destroyed the wall in season 1 as well as the potential origin of the titans themselves. The episodes are well paced, with sprinklings of back story and the same trademark unpredictability that made the first season so good. It feels like Attack On Titan has matured as a show and its steel focus on one large plot rather than individual stories within one greater season feels like a better fit for a season chock full of action.
The surviving characters all return from last year including main protagonist Eren (Bryce Papenbrook) and with more emphasis on the titans and action this time around, there are some solid episodes later on that focus almost exclusively on epic fights between the behemoths. Added to the combination of CGI effects and some slick art work, the fights themselves are surprisingly well choreographed. As you watch this season, you really get a feel that the writers were determined to make a show that built upon the solid foundation from season 1 and deliver some serious fan service to those that have stuck with the show thus far by answering key questions.
With a third season green-lit for April 2018, it was inevitable then that in true anime fashion the season would end on a cliffhanger but it still feels a little frustrating given the way season 1 rounded off the main plot arc. Most of the characters do have satisfying conclusions but with the main conflict barely resolved, it just doesn’t quite feel as satisfying a conclusion as the first time around.
Its only a minor gripe though and if anything, just shows what a great show this is that I’m already excited to see more. The main plot is excellent throughout, with some well handled twists and a decent amount of screen time given to individual characters other than Eren. The art work feels a slight step up from its debut back in 2013 and the meshing of CGI, watercolour backdrops and animation are really well handled. Despite an over-reliance on cliffhanger endings, Season 2 is a step up in almost every way and well worth a watch.
Verdict - 8.5/10