Here’s everything you need to know about episode 86 of Attack on Titan, the eleventh and penultimate episode of the second half of The Final Season, “Retrospective.”
Previous episode synopsis
After some tense discussions, the Anti-Eren Squad decided to try and save the Azumabito – held hostage by Floch and the Jaegerists – without fighting. Armin and Connie tried, but Floch essentially called their bluff. Mikasa, Jean, Magath, and Pieck helped the Azumabito to a cellar for safety as Annie and Reiner flew in and transformed into their Titan forms to lay waste.
Armin and Connie were with Daz and Samuel – who they trained with – and tried to get them to diffuse the bombs attached to the Azumabito flying boat. They fought back, leading Connie to wrench the gun from Samuel, shoot and kill Daz, then shoot and kill Samuel. Connie let out a guttural and pained scream to end the episode.
The episode opens with a short airing of the events of the last episode, paying more focus to Armin and Connie. Daz is shown sinking into the ocean after being shot dead, Armin reaching his arm out for his former friend. He looks over to see Connie, shaking with his hand on the gun over a dead Samuel with three shots in his face.
Annie and Reiner (as Titans) are shown a bit behind the two, taking on the Jaegerists and decimating them. Reiner backhands two so hard they end up dead in the ocean. They keep fighting, destroying buildings and killing foes, but a wide shot shows nearly every rooftop filled with fighters to take on the two Titans.
They cut back to Hange, Jean, and Magath, who are told by the Azumabito engineers that it’ll take at least a day to get the boat ready to fly, half a day with the “necessary facilities.” Magath, to clarify, responds that the enemy can keep sending reinforcements and the Titans’ powers will only last a few hours, but they have to defend the harbor for half a day?
Hange, in horror, says that’s too much time as the Rumbling’s pace was “faster than a galloping horse.” Further, they have no obstacles as they are so large they can just walk across oceans and lay waste to mountains. Hange says in half a day, the Colossal Titans will have already crossed the shoreline “to about 600 kilometers inland. It will probably take them four days to trample the entire continent.” She adds that even if they could stop Eren with the fastest method possible, it will be too late for Liberio.
As Hange and Magath contemplate the futility of their effort, Kiyomi Azumabito says she has a plan. She points them to a map that shows an Azumabito hangar to the south in the Marleyan city of Odiha. Kiyomi says they can use a ship to take the boat along the coast to the hangar, work on it there, and fly off to stop the Rumbling.
Hange asks if that’s one of the cities about to be destroyed by the Rumbling, with Kiyomi saying they could get there ahead of the Rumbling. However, she says whether or not Odiha stands for “half a day will be a gamble.” Magath turns to the engineers and tell them to get the ship ready in 15 minutes. They all depart to do their separate duties as the intro plays.
They return with the battle between the Jaegerists and the Titans. Mikasa comes to their aid, literally kicking a guy in the gut so hard with the momentum from the ODMG that he dies. Mikasa flies to both Annie and Reiner to inform them of the plan and to protect the Azumabito.
As they flee, Floch flies to a roof and orders their deaths. As they shoot, Mikasa flies in and delivers a kick to face, caving it in on one of the shooters, the momentum sending her off. Hange then flies in and kills two others with her swords as Floch looks on in horror. He suddenly realizes their plan.
Reiner goes to protect the Azumabito with his body, but suffers an attack from Thunder Spears. He maintains his guard as Annie tries to fight off the rest. They bypass her and aim for the Azumabito, but Annie thrusts her arm forward to take the Thunder Spears. A group of Jaegerists fire off around six Thunder Spears at her, but Reiner comes in and takes the shot for her, all landing on his non-armored face.
Floch tells the rest to grab all of the Thunder Spears and destroy this ship. He, stretching the truth a bit, tells them if Eren dies, Paradis will sink into a sea of blood. He tells them the world will take vengeance on them and kill their parents, siblings, and children. He finishes with the Survey Corps motto: “Dedicate your hearts!“
Pieck as the Cart Titan is then shown with Yelena, Onyankopon, Falco, Gabi, and Levi on her back. They notice the battle not going well and Falco resolves himself to fight. Pieck cautions against it, saying the first transformation never goes well (remember Eren’s first transformation?). Pieck tells him she’ll join the battle once she secures them on the ship. Falco laments the fact that Porco Galliard isn’t there to use the Jaw’s power. He jumps off and runs off, Pieck stopping Gabi from joining by taking them to ship.
Magath, at the ship, turns to find Connie and Armin approaching, the latter still wounded from the gunshots. Connie drops off Armin to Magath and goes to join the fight. Pieck appears from the water with the others on her back and tells Magath that Falco went off to join the fight. He grimaces as they show the mechanics loading coal into the boiler to get the ship going.
Then, Hange and Mikasa notice a train coming into town carrying the Jaegerist reinforcements. Hange says they need to take out the transport when suddenly, explosions rock the train from the front, traveling to the rear, destroying the transport and killing everyone inside to the shock of everyone at the harbor, particularly Floch.
Falco is shown in an alley jabbing a long spike into his hand, blood pouring out, but unable to trigger his transformation. Jean leaps down from the roof and tells Falco to go to the ship. However, they look over to see Annie’s decapitated head hit the ground, Reiner on on a knee as both Titans are unable to move from their injuries.
As the Jaegerists gear up for the final attacks to take out the two, Connie emerges from the smoke to strike down the would-be attackers. Mikasa aids Connie by attacking the enemies on the roof, and she’s saved thanks to Jean taking out another Jaegerist with a headshot. He tells himself if they hesitate, the Rumbling won’t stop as Mikasa wipes the blood from her face.
Pieck then emerges from a building, taking out a few enemies on the rooftop and chomping on others. Floch sends out his troops to hit Pieck with Thunder Spears. She does her best at evading a bevy of attacks, finally getting trapped by them. Still shots are shown of others in action: Hange, Mikasa, Connie, Jean, and Pieck, with Floch yelling to his forces to defend the island to their deaths. Falco is then shown running, his bloody hand raised, and transforming for the first time into the Jaw.
The mid-episode infographic was on the Jaegerists.
Falco starts hammering troops as the others realize what happened. Jean yells that this is the time to attack with their formations broken thanks to Falco’s attack. A furious battle then commences, Mikasa moving so fast that the sound of her kills exceeds the speed of the panning camera. Falco sees Floch, who steels himself as he screams and makes his way past Falco, blocks an attack from Hange, evades Pieck with a Thunder Spear, and launches himself into the air. Floch says as long as there’s a hole in the ship, they’ll win. He gears up to launch a Thunder Spear, yelling, “I’LL BE THE ONE TO SAVE ELDIA!”
The others look on in horror, but suddenly a finger is shown pulling a trigger, hitting Floch in the right shoulder area just before he launches the attack, causing it to hit the water next to the ship and missing the ship entirely. Floch falls into the ocean, arms outstretched with an anguished look on his face.
The Jaegerists’ morale drops at the loss of their leader. This leads to Mikasa going on her own rampage, singlehandedly killing a horde of enemies, then using a Thunder Spear on one of the deceased to destroy the building. Blood pours onto Mikasa for a few seconds, then turning with a focused look in her eyes as Onyankopon tells everyone they’re ready to take off for the Odiha.
Suddenly, Falco attacks. With this being his first transformation, he still doesn’t have full control and consciousness much like Eren when he first transformed into the Attack Titan that at the time was not revealed to also have the Founding Titan from Grisha’s battle with Freida Reiss. He attacks Pieck, and Magath yells for Pieck to hold him down. Magath cuts open the nape and brings out Falco’s body, telling him to rest and that he did well.
The squad makes it to the ship as Magath hands off Falco to Onyankopon, saying he’s going to defend the rear. The ship departs the harbor without him, Samuel’s body still visible on the pier. Magath is shown running past the discarded Titan bodies as he’s spotted. Suddenly, a figure swoops in and kills the enemies, landing in front of Magath, who has his gun pointed at the figure. It turns out to be Keith Shadis (Sadies), the former instructor to all of the main characters.
Magath asks if the yet-to-be-introduced Shadis was the one who took out the train of reinforcements. Shadis replies it was indeed him. He asks why Magath didn’t get on the ship, and Magath says it was to take out the captured Marleyan cruiser in the port so that the Jaegerists don’t use it to catch up and sink the ship. Shadis offers his help.
They’re shown in the ammo supply room, where Magath tells Shadis he’s there to set the ammo supply on fire, causing a massive explosion. He tells Keith this is his chance to jump into the water, but Shadis said it’s fine because, “I was looking for a place to die, anyway.” Magath asks why Shadis helped them, possibly dooming the island.
Shadis, former instructor, reveals he was the one watching from the window as he saw his former students ride off with Annie. He says he was struck by their growth when he realized their plan. Magath says if Shadis hadn’t stopped the reinforcements, they would have lost, and Shadis will be remembered one day as one of the heroes who saved the world; Shadis responds that that makes two of them, then.
Magath lays out the gunpowder as he says he can’t be proud of any of his actions. He said he ignored the voice of his consciousness and send kids into battle to destroy the walls; a visage of the those under Magath’s command was shown. Shadis says even if Magath can’t be proud of himself, he respects Magath and he’s sure the kids feel the same. Jaegerists pound on the sealed door as they speak.
Shadis hands over the rifle to Magath. Magath asks for Shadis’ name, to which he says Keith Shadis. Magath says Theo Magath. They smile at each other as Magath pulls the trigger next to the gunpowder. A huge explosion triggers on both sides of the ship, killing everyone within. Gabi and the others are shown looking on in shock and sadness at the death of Magath and Shadis.
After the ending credits, a scene plays where Hange informs the recovering Titans of Magath and Shadis’ sacrifice. Annie collapses at Hange telling them Liberio is doomed, saying she’s lost the will the fight and doesn’t want to have to fight and kill each other anymore. She asks Mikasa again if she can kill Eren as the episode ends.
Who shot Floch out of the air?
The anime didn’t really identify the person, but it seems to be leaning heavily toward Shadis being the one to shoot Floch. In the manga, Gabi was the one to shoot Floch from the deck of the ship. However, Gabi was shown along with everyone else to be looking on in horror as Floch readied his shot.
Is Floch dead?
Presumably, yes, but there wasn’t any confirmation beyond his falling into the sea. He didn’t appear to be dead in midair, but he did flatback into the ocean.
What does the ending mean for the next – last – episode?
The ending sets up the last episode of the series, “The Dawn of Humanity.” The Anti-Eren Squad will need to ready the flying boat at Odiha and hope that the Rumbling doesn’t reach them before they depart. Then they must locate Eren and engage in the final battle to determine the fate of the world.
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