Since Eren Jaeger’s commencement of the Founding Titan’s ultimate ability, The Rumbling, all Titan hardening has been undone, including the crystalline hardening that once encased Annie Leonhardt. She has been in suspended animation for the past four years, encased in Titan hardening since the middle to late stages of the first season. Long story short, it’s been a while, Annie! What has Annie’s return meant for the overall storyline now? Let’s find out!
Annie, Are You Okay?
Obviously, as a Subject of Ymir, Annie saw the same vision that everyone else saw, so despite being out of action for four years, Annie was more or less aware that the situation was less than ideal. She tries to sneak around but due to her deplenished strength, Annie can barely even crawl. However, Annie seems to be insanely lucky as a certain member of the Military Police happens to come across wet footprints that led straight to her. However, unaware of who has found her, Annie grabs Hitch and threatens her, but at her current strength, Annie is simply no match for her. The two friends reconcile before Hitch decides to take Annie away from the chaos.
Annie and Hitch, Reunited
One aspect that was barely touched upon in the main anime was the fact that Annie and Hitch had a close friendship mostly inspired by the fact that they were roommates. Despite being so different from each other, Annie and Hitch developed an understanding, and in one of the Season 1 OVAs, we get to see how Annie and Hitch interacted in the days leading up to Annie’s cover being blown and her subsequent crystallization.
Annie recalls a profound memory of the man who adopted and raised her. Annie’s father was selfish and wanted to train her to gain entry into the military so that his own living condition could improve. He put her through grueling combat training in a less than ideal environment for a growing child, raising Annie to be a merciless killing machine. He was so fixated on making Annie lethal that when she even went as far as permanently injuring him, rather than lament the sheer pain he was in, what Annie’s father experienced was pride. Before she left for the mission on Paradis Island, Annie’s father begged her not to go, as he’d undergone a series of epiphanies, realizing that he loves his daughter and doesn’t want her to do the dangerous things that are required of the military position he spent her entire life preparing her for. He then begs her to promise that she will return, and that promise is what continues to drive Annie now.
Every Piece of the Pie
One major plot point since the commencement of The Rumbling has been Porco Galliard’s sacrifice, relinquishing the Jaw Titan to Falco Grice. Falco’s memory is in a bit of a haze since he was turned into a pure Titan via Zeke’s spinal fluid wine, but since eating Porco, he has regained his human form and sentience. However; Connie plans to use the child’s confusion and trust to lead him to Ragako, where he will feed Falco to his mother and return her to humanity while also healing her bad spine. Armin realizes Connie’s plan and pursues, with Gabi alongside him.
Realizing that he cannot convince Connie not to commit the horror he is about to perform, Armin rushes to intervene in his own way by throwing himself into Connie’s mother’s mouth. Connie saves Armin’s life and comes to grips with the evil he was about to let himself do. After Connie is calmed down, Falco is brought up to speed regarding the events since his Titanification, including the death of his brother Colt, and then the group return to the city, where a festival is taking place. While seated at a stall serving pies, the group bumps into Annie, and she decides to head out with them.
Annie’s return and subsequent reunion with Connie invokes a sense that Shingeki no Kyojin is getting the band back together. Many of the surviving cast of the first season has now banded together to save the world amidst the kind of insane situation that is The Rumbling, and it is reminiscent, in a bittersweet way, of a simpler time. While we didn’t expect Annie to be as cooperative as she is being, it’s great to see her in action again! What did you think of the return of Annie Leonhardt? Drop a comment below and tell us your thoughts!