Attack on Titan season 4 part 2 released on streaming services this past Sunday, January 9th, and the episode was filled to the brim with suspenseful moments. So, before the season wraps up I feel as though now is as good a time as any to run a list of the top 5 Attack on Titan characters.
We will go ahead and start at some honorable mentions before jumping to number 5 and work our way down to who I believe to be the number one character in the unforgettable Attack on Titan series. As a fair warning this article will contain spoilers about the show up to the point of the show. I will not discuss anything regarding the manga as to be fair to the anime only viewers. So, final warning if you are not caught up with the current show I would come back to this article once you are.
Reiner Braun– King depression himself was certainly in the running for a top 5 spot. My main reason for sidelining him in the honorable mentions is how pathetic he has turned out to be. He went from a badass hero type to a bottom of the pack loser in the blink of an eye. While this is not necessarily a bad thing, as the way his arc and character development have unfolded is nothing short of brilliant, I think there are 5 better characters. Reiner has a clear split in his personality due to his Marlyan mission to wipe out the Eldians of Paradis who he spent so much time with as comrades. This has caused him both anguish and confusion, driving him to where he is now. There is so much about Reiners character that makes him unique (not to mention that he is the armored titan) and I believe it deserves an honorable mention spot.
Kenny Ackerman- You can make a case that there are a lot of characters who deserve an honorable mention for this list. However, I cannot think of a single character who deserved to be in the top 5 spot more than him if only for one thing… He had been alive longer. Unfortunately for us Kenny leaves the series just as swiftly as he entered it. At the beginning of season 3 he begins to hunt the scouts into extinction and if it wasn’t for Levi’s superior Ackerman skills I am sure he would have succeeded. Not only did Kenny deliver one of the best AOT monologues, “We humans are all the same, every last one of us…” but he also had a completely different personality than the only other two Ackermans we know. I firmly believe that if he had survived the chapel battle he would easily have worked his way into a top 5 character spot.
Sasha Brause- No one will ever know how badly I wanted to place the world’s best potato girl in the top 5, but the more I sat and thought about it the more I could not justify it. In a world full of traumatized and misunderstood characters, Sasha is about the only normal one in the pack. Her plucky attitude and unquenchable desire for food makes her such a fun character to watch and she is constantly rallying her comrades when situations are most dire. While there are moments of her being used as comic relief she is taken seriously as a character unlike other classic comic relief characters. Not to mention that her untimely death broke the internet and our hearts. The only reason she sits outside of the top 5 in my opinion is the simple fact that she is far less integral to the story than any of my other top 5 character choices, but I believed she deserved an honorable mention.
5. Armin Arlet
The lovable lost puppy of the main trio easily claims the number 5 spot on this list. His brilliant intellect is only ever rivaled by both Erwin and Hange, but his quick thinking has saved humanity time and again. Armin’s journey from shy and unconfident to bold and daring has been an incredible story to behold. The innocence in his eyes and the pureness in his heart are lessened but still remain. Unlike other characters in the show, Armin is one who has not fully lost who he was. He is an undoubtedly lovable character who shows bravery like no other in Season 3, where he sacrifices himself for Eren and the rest of his friends so that they have a fighting chance at defeating the Colossal Titan. However, as we all know Armin was brought back and now wields the unmatched destructive powers of the colossal titan.
4. Eren Jaeger
Eren Jaeger, the protagonist, antagonist, hero, anti-hero, human, and titan all rolled into one incredible package. The boy with a list of trauma and tribulations so long that it would make even the most heroic men break down in despair. Eren is not a normal young man, he is someone who was forced to grow up faster than any child his age and face the brutal reality that life is cruel. From losing his mother, to countless friends, squad mates, and mentors, not to mention having his incredible titan powers forced on him. Eren is now obligated by destiny to walk a path that will come to a crossroads and decide the fate of the world. While we as the audience have no idea what is to come and what decisions Eren will make for the world and for his friends one thing remains true. We cannot discount the journey we have been on with him. We have watched him swear revenge on the titans and followed him as he took it. Now it is time for us to see what our boy is truly capable of and what he will do.
3. Hange Zoë
The bright eyed scientist who comes off as a little too titan obsessed. She shows a ton of solid character growth and makes some incredible scientific discoveries throughout the series. She works tirelessly to help bring the Eldian Island of Paradis new technology and advancement in her time as Survey Corps Commander, and is far from shabby on the battlefield. Hange’s rise from scientist to commander was a great slow burn and though her quirky personality seems to have been stamped out through trauma and constant tribulation she is an unrivaled heroine in the Attack on Titan world.
2. Levi Ackerman
The universally loved Ackerman who makes Titan slaying look less effortless than cleaning. When you look deeper than the surface, Levi’s character has more range than it appears. He almost constantly comes off as a nonchalant and bored person who flips a switch to pure rage when he enters the battlefield. There is more to him than that though, plenty of times he shows a compassionate attitude towards his comrades and squad mates. He also comes off as comedic relief in the times he tasks his squads with cleaning and they continuously fail to meet his expectations. Levi is humanities strongest soldier and at no point in the series is he ever truly tested in battle, not a single person or titan has been able to hang with him and I doubt we will ever see anyone successfully go toe to toe with him.
1. Erwin Smith
A hot take you say? Lets actually take a second to think this through. Commander Erwin Smith, the master strategist, is almost the soul reason the scouts and Eldian Humanity got so far. He went to war against an unknown enemy with unknown powers and won. He also managed to do this while being hindered by the corrupted government he was trying to defend. He took unbelievable risks and put countless lives in danger with every victory attempt, but he almost always came out on top. Nothing lost nothing gained as they say. No matter the cost Erwin Smith put his life on the line countless times in order to win the war against the seemingly unbeatable titans. For those who like to point out the fact that Erwin only fought so hard for his own selfish ideas, I say look at all of the brave and selfless things he did. He fought through the pain of losing his arm in battle, went against a tyrannical and oppressive government, lost countless comrades, and even faced down his own impending death with unmatched bravery. Without Erwin’s decisive strategies there is almost no chance that the Eldians would have defeated the titans and had all the success they had in the show. For this reason Erwin, in my opinion, is the best character in Attack on Titan.
Attack on Titan season 4 part 2 is streaming on Hulu, Crunchyroll, and Funimation. The first episode was incredible so make sure to tune in every Sunday!
- This article was updated on February 13th, 2022