Shingeki no Kyoujin Episode 7: The Smallest Blade
The cry of mankind’s rage and anguish…
With the citizens safely evacuated, the soldiers begin to retreat. Mikasa notices that many of them are still the area, and after meeting up with everyone, she learns that the supply forces for gas have either barricaded themselves in HQ to avoid the titans, or simply ran away – and no one has enough gas to climb the wall to retreat. After hearing that Eren had died, Mikasa goads the remaining troops into one last mission to resupply gas. Carelessly wasting her gas, Mikasa almost gives up to let herself be eaten by a titan, but her body continues to fight. An “abnormal” titan appears and begins killing other titans, something that has never happened before.
With all the new developments so far, it seems that the new graduates won’t be given in any slack. From their resupply teams abandoning them to leave for the wall and having to simply stay alive, and things like equipment malfunction, there really is no mercy for the lucky, and if not unlucky, than those that are not smart enough to figure out what to do.
The episode starts out with the man that commanded the teams in the beginning to split into two parts and defend the citizens leaving the supply room to go into the inner wall to “organize the troops.” The worst part is that this causes the abandonment of all the defending troops that were just on the front line, using their gas to keep the titans at bay, only to be left with not enough gas to climb the wall in order to retreat. Jean has his reasons for joining the corps, and from the looks of it, he’s really not happy about having to fight. Even with this sense of not wanting to get involved as he sees his fellow soldiers jump into stupid situations- I suppose selfishness has a place in the world if it is what keeps you alive…but at the same time, the overall selfishness of each person cause the downfall of countless more. The troops in HQ barricade themselves in because there’s no effective way to fight giants on the inside of buildings, so that’s understandable, but it’s another stuck cog in the way that the humans fight, that nothing really gets them ready for real combat despite the grueling training years they’re put through as new recruits. They freeze up, they panic, they run away- all very human and valid in face of danger.
I kind of thought that Mikasa would be OK, but it turns out even she’s not immune to this thinking. She insults the forces left behind, but had no intention of making it out alive after hearing that Eren had died, and wastes all her gas. Why is she talking to a pomegranate? No idea. But I guess there’s probably some broad symbolism that correlates between the “beauty of the world” and “pomegranates.” XD
Anyways, it seems that bravado is what gets everyone through the day, and I feel that is why propaganda in wartime is something of a necessary evil in limited doses. The government in the show has shown signs of inequality and information control, but in the battlefield being called names by potato girl is probably enough to ignite that last spark of making it back alive.
I haven’t even touched on the biggest pivot in the show, haven’t I? With the appearance of the new titan (I already know what the twist is, but I’m going to hold onto that for next week), it seems that the humans might have a chance. Whether it’s a wild cannon (which he kind of is) or a trump card, the new titan really takes the show up a notch. The bad thing- if there’s one of him, the others “like him” are soon to appear, and the troops are going to be thrown into bigger, if not worse, situation either by defending the weakened wall and ventures outside.
Armin seriously has this fatalistic streak- even after Eren saved him, he’s still doing the “altruistic” act, and giving gas to Mikasa with no intention of making it back either. So in one episode, you see the ones that are selfish, and the ones that give too much, and that doesn’t really matter in the long run, because titans eat everyone equally.
With the appearance of the new titan, it can be confirmed of the various types of titans vary based on size/personality/intelligence. I think this has mostly been viewed from the tactical standpoint, since the abnormal ones are harder to kill because of they deviate from the “standard” pattern of behaviour. The humans will most likely have a hard time accepting that the titans might possibly be intelligent in nature, related to humans…or might be a different form of humankind.