I ended my review of the first season with the following:

I'm enjoying the story enough to want to continue; I wish the story was delivered with more speed and grace.

The second season adds neither agility nor grace to its storytelling, and in many ways feels like a worse version of Lost — it accumulates interesting mysteries and plot wrinkles with deftness and alacrity, but without any desire or satisfaction in resolving them. Indeed, the show seems to only be interested in causing the viewer to go "wait, what?" as many times as possible: characters act in ways that are completely at odds with their established personalities, and the show's own internal logic tends towards incoherence.

I evoke Lost because I think that's a good show with many big flaws, and the secret to that show's success is that you fall in love with enough things — the charming characters, the bonkers lore, the drastic and gorgeous setpieces — about it to forgive the flaws. AoT has some of those things: there's certainly a vivid sense of character design for the Titans (and I actually admire how restrained the human character design tends to be). But I am not rooting for any of these characters besides maybe Mikasa and Armin, whose main virtue appears to be competence.

I am certainly not rooting for Eren, who has demonstrated no growth over the past two seasons and rivals Shinji Ikari for the title of "most annoying protagonist in anime". (Which is not to say that I am rooting for the Titans, either, but certainly at this point they seem like they deserve to win.)


Lightning bolt
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