Attack on Titan Volume 18 Review: The Battle for Shiganshina Begins!

The first half of Attack on Titan season three ended last week and, unfortunately, we will not be getting the next arc for another six months.
Since I have a bad tendency to get spoiled when it comes to this anime and because I do not want to wait any longer to see what happens, I have decided to read the manga.
I just read Volume 18 so I will review the chapters of this volume from where season three left off.
This means I will not be reviewing chapters 71 and 72 because they have already been covered in the anime.
However, I will be reviewing the remaining chapters 73 and 74.
I will also be reviewing the volumes as I read along, before I get to the recent chapters, which I will review individually.
Until then, here’s my review of the final two chapters from Volume 18.

Chapter 73: The Town Where Everything Began.

3 and a half stars
This chapter kicks off with a great opening to the Shiganshina Arc, with narration over the images of the aftermath of Reiner and Bertholdt’s destruction of Wall Maria.
What I liked about this was it clearly established what was at stake.
Although I will admit, some of the artwork during this section, like when Eren was shown vowing to destroy the Titans again, was rather off-putting because there was an uncanny valley to it.
From here the chapter goes on to detail the Scouts arrival at Shiganshina and them starting to enact their plan of using Eren’s hardening ability to seal the wall.
There were some great character moments during the chapter, like Armin and Eren’s discussion at the beginning.
This conversation made Eren overcome his fear of failure because it reminded him of how Armin started his dream of going outside the walls.
It looks like Armin will get a lot of development in this arc based off the build up he has had in regards to starting Eren’s dream.
Overall, this was fairly standard stuff that is primarily setting up the real battle for Shiganshina, ending with a compelling cliffhanger that reveals Reiner and Bertholdt preparing to strike when Eren goes to seal the hole.

 

Chapter 74: Mission Objective.

4 stars
The battle for Shiganshina kicked off in this chapter with intense scenes of action and suspense that prepares the reader for what is to come.
One thing that did surprise me about this chapter though, was how easily Eren sealed the wall without interference from Reiner and Bertholdt.
It felt like Eren going to seal the wall would have been the perfect time to strike but maybe they did not know which one he was due him wearing his hood.
Either way, Reiner and Bertholdt’s clever hiding was not enough to save them because Armin expertly deduced that they were hiding inside the walls.
I loved how Erwin put Armin in command of a squad in this chapter because it showed how good he could be in a position of power.
It was also very funny when Armin gave orders to the scouts under this command only to follow it up with a “please”.
Armin’s quick thinking led to Reiner being discovered, however, he was prepared and killed a soldier before anyone could blink.
Then, before Reiner could do anymore harm, he was brutally stabbed by Levi in an intense moment of action that had me on the edge of my seat.
Reiner managed to escape and transform, however, and it was after this that the scariest moment of the chapter happened.
As Erwin is handing out orders dozens of Titan’s shift into being on the horizon, including the Beast Titan.
This raises so many questions like if all the Titans with the Beast Titan are Shifters and, if so, why had they not attacked before now?
If they are Shifters then the Scouts are in for a whole world of hurt and bloodshed.
Speaking of which, I expect we will be seeing a round two between Eren and Reiner next chapter if the cover of Volume 19 is anything to go on.
Overall, this chapter was a great way to kick of the battle for Shiganshina and has me terrified and excited about what will happen next.

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