Like, Titans exist for the sole purpose of eating humans, they are mindless without higher function than that. The deviants types obviously deviate from that (being not perfect Titans?) while the Shifters are a whole other story
But even Eren needs a purpose to shift: to defeat the Titans, to plug this breach with the rock, to pick up this spoon, etc..
and I assume Reiner and Bertholdt are similar (I have to destroy this gate, I have to wipe out humanity).
Annie was perhaps: I need to kidnap Eren
Ymir's perhaps was: I need to protect Christa
Basically, a case can be made for a shifter needing a purpose to shift into Titan form.
So, I began to wonder: what purpose do the Titans within the walls have?
Immediately I thought of this: Well, to protect of course. But protect who from whom?
Now the formation of the walls, shown-ish below lead me to believe that they were protecting humans from the Titans (this is without bringing in the embedded Titans yet)
Yet, the secret writings on the map within each volume (sorry, I would have a link but my skills fail me at the moment) tell of the walls being prepared. Prepared for the Titans me thinks?
So now I think: the creators of the wall purposed the wall to be created to protect "the Ideal Humanity" from the Titans which are purposed to "eat" humans, the "unneeded" ones in this Ideal Humanity.
Now, with the revelation of the Titans within the walls themselves, this makes it more plausible, see if the people who made the walls in preparation, also made the Titan outbreak, then their purposes are consistent and tada! stuff!
but hold on.
Usually a protector is shown facing the enemy and protecting that which is behind him
(if the link doesn't work, it is chapter 34, pages 8-11)
The Titan is facing inside the wall. So here is my thoughts: who is the Titan protecting, and what is it protecting from?
I remember Ymir suggesting the Enemy is not the Titans, but as many have speculated the enemy could either be the government, the wall cultist group, or both.
So I really thought of the Terra Cotta Army as well. The TC army was made to protect Emperor Qin in the afterlife (I apologize to those who know this way better than me for anything I get wrong), and were facing east against his enemies standing in battle ready formations.
I thought, well what if the Titans are not protecting the people inside the walls, but protecting someone or something from the center? I use the center to mean either people, or some machine, or some truth. Basically the Center to me is an unidentified 'noun' that has some unknown importance to the story and the truth of the story.
When this center, this thing does whatever it does, perhaps the Titans within the walls are there to stop it. remember Armin's words: I feel like someday soon they'll get up and walk in on us (something like that)
The people living within the walls think it's for their protection, when it could be that the ones being protected are elsewhere. Perhaps RBA's village? Or some unknown place. Either way, I think that the Titans within the walls, and so the walls themselves are not suppose to protect humanity forever.
The cultists calling the walls divine and sacred is a tip off for me. It means something important happened with those Titans. There is a reason, and a truth there that we don't know. I'm suggesting that what things seem like in the manga so far may not be as they actually are.
One thing, to end off with, Isayama uses contradictions or seeming contradictions within his story in an interesting way, not as mistakes, but as a literary device. Which is why I think it isn't too far-fetched to believe that the walls (which should exist to protect humanity) in fact are not meant to protect humanity.
I like the idea, and you can add that in the second ending of the anime there is like a square between the 2 armies, I can think of that square being the castle at the center of the circle formed by the walls, maybe the wall titans are protecting people inside that castle (the nobility), I mean maybe the nobility are no common humans, maybe all they are shifters. By the way, I do think Wall Shina is full of titans but I don't think Rose nor Maria have titans inside them.
I like the reference to the Terra Cotta Army. I wonder if-- since all of the wall titans must be colossal types (like Bert)-- they are a threat to all humans and all titans as long as they come in large enough numbers to be able to back each other up?
What if titans were not protecting anything, what if instead the wall provided to stop them? That would also work if we think of what the Wall Cult guy said about not letting the titan see sunlight. If the wall-titan was there of his own will, him coming back alive thanks to sunlight would not represent a threat for humanity.. am i wrong?
Unless they were told that when they awaken, they can/must wreak havoc?
I noticed my theory somehow collides with what is said in the hidden upside-down writings. Walls were already there, "previously prepared" for humanity to come and inhabit them. To create a valid and powerful theory we should insert also Shifters in it, and possibly titans on humanity's side.
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Re: A theory on Titans in the Walls (Spoilers)
sunlight gives energy to the titans right ? but the titan's face wasn't covered by a cloth , just the wall , so how were the titans kept in place without wrecking havoc while the wall was being built ? what if the titans inside the walls were actually titan shifters that sacrificed themselves as pillars for the wall and without sunlight they go in a comatose state and not actually die and would reveal secrets that endangers the church's ideals if they are awoken
Nope; titan crystal, like the stuff Annie encased herself within. Armin and/or Hange speculated there were more titans in the walls. Sorry I can't remember the chapter right now... (but this is why the wall cult was so opposed to major maintenance on the walls-- both because nothing is stronger than that crystal and because the titans could be discovered)
thanks for the replies, there are definitely more information to be considered, but when talking to a friend of mine taking a science degree, he theorized that the titan power may have something to do with using the sun's energy (all of it, including infrared, and other forms of sun-light) and using that energy to make the Titan body. At least for shifters they are conjuring a Titan's body, not transforming. This includes a reason for the heat of the shifters and the steam, it is energy escaping in the easiest form.
Perhaps the Titans within the wall function on a similar principle. Without sun-light they go into a dormant mode (perhaps like cold-blooded animals when in a cold room?).
Sawney and Bean wound down and became lethargic after different amounts of time had passed. It probably varies from titan to titan, and there may be a way (which the ape titan knows) to manipulate the night-time suitability of a (new) titan, or to allow them to store energy, or allow them to use the energy from food eaten in human form or such. As for the walls, they obviously wouldn't be 100% crystal. The exterior (the parts which cracked) is probably made of ordinary building materials. It's unclear whether it would be a solid seam along the interior or if it's just in the for joints and connecting pieces but the crystal could reinforce that wall a lot, since apparently nothing can break it (so far).
I don't think they are made by crystals (even partially), just hardened skin material. http://www.mangareader.net/shingeki-no-kyojin/37/7
Hanji said "it got cut off from Annie's titan body" about a small fragment that she was carrying. Althought in the next page she said that it was the crystal that she compared to the pieces of the wall, I think that could be a translation error or something like that.
Since they couldn't even scratch the crystal around Annie with their steel blades and all that.