Shingeki no Kyojin 01 – Life as Livestock

Shingeki no Kyojin 01 - Colossal Titan

What’s become universally accepted as Spring 2013’s most anticipated anime, Shingeki no Kyojin finally makes its debut.  A debut that makes me excited and ecstatic to see one of my favourite manga being adapted.

Before we even get to the story, let’s talk about the fantastic production that Production I.G’s new formed subsidiary Wit Studio is in charge of.  Straight away I was in awe of just how great the animation and soundtrack are, leaving my jaw on the floor for a little longer.  It’s great to see the I.G animation companies putting up so much cash – I like to think of it as effort and confidence – into this adaptation.  Everything from the OP to the first glimpse at the action scenes leaves much to be desired.

Shingeki no Kyojin 01 - Eren as a child

Putting to one side the fact that we’ve been teased with such great production values from the beginning, it’s hard to talk about the story with the same level of enthusiasm.  There’s a reason for that; Shingeki no Kyojin is a slow starter.  It took a good 7-10 chapters before I was completely absorbed by the series, so even I understand that aside from looking phenomenal, it has yet to give many a reason to stick with the story.  That said, the episode does a pretty good job of setting the mood/tone of the series whilst giving us an ending which pushes the story along.

We’re introduced to our main trio of characters: Eren, Mikasa and later on, Armin.  Eren takes the lead as our disgruntled youth who hates the ‘livestock lifestyle’ the human race has adopted.  He protests this vehemently, by belittling the stationed troops and showing his full support for the scouting legion because his curiosity – called human nature by his father – cannot be contained.

Shingeki no Kyojin 01 - Crying Mother

Eren sure is admirable for wanting to help out and join the scouting legion, but it doesn’t look that good to others.  Not only have they produced no results, they can’t even tell a mother who just lost her son that his death wasn’t in vain.  A perfect way to sum up the desperate times in which the story takes place: a mother is forced to ask how useful her son’s death was, and the commanding officer can’t even say it was.

Shingeki no Kyojin 01 - Mikasa is scary

As I said, all the events until (and after) now have set the atmosphere of the series.  That was essentially the first episode’s job; not giving that much attention to the plot, but giving us the overview of the situation.  Shingeki no Kyojin‘s story is taking place in a world of inner struggle, confinement and the unknown.  A more psychological approach to the dark fantasy genre, which can only serve to make us think about issues as they are brought up.  The manga itself takes a very “case study” approach when examining the characters and the human race.

Shingeki no Kyojin 01 - Titan meal time

To bring the first episode to a close, we’re given one more big event: a titan invasion.  With the way the episode started, this was what we were building up to for the entirety of the episode.  It ended on an uncensored and bloody note, reminding us once again that we’re in for one hell of a dark series.  I’d consider the end, the official kick-start of Shingeki no Kyojin‘s potential rise to greatness.

4 thoughts on “Shingeki no Kyojin 01 – Life as Livestock

  1. foshizzel

    Big ass giants are creepy looking, but it works xD

    I am curious to see how long the animation can keep up for what 20+ episodes? Also will there be filler or training themed episodes? I haven’t read the manga yet so I have no idea, but I have to ask is this following the manga 100% or are they going to include anime only stuff? I can’t picture it following page by page from the original stuffs.

    At least it looks cool xD

    1. azeriraz Post author

      The series doesn’t believe in training arcs. I can’t say much without it being a spoiler, but there really aren’t any traditional “shonen” training arcs in the manga.

      My guess is that it’ll stay faithful to the source material for as much as it can, but I’m not 100% sure they won’t go down the original story route. There aren’t many chapters of the manga but the chapters are quite deep in content, leaving me with hope that this will be a mostly faithful adaptation with some content thrown in to fill up the episodes; with the objective of not burning through all the source material.

      Regarding the animation, I sure hope they can keep it up. It looks like Production I.G have placed a lot of expectations and money into the series, so one can only hope they’ll keep it up.

  2. Pingback: Shingeki no Kyojin 02 – Day Two | Anime Audiolog

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