Chapter Shingeki no Kyojin 136 Chapter Discussion

Jedidiyah

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The thing is Zeke and Armin are Ymir worse enemies, Zeke wanted to end The subject of Ymir, which would mean ending Ymir herself, since without Eldians she can't interact with the real world, she would be trapped forever in Path. I believe she needed Eren to free here to act her revenge upon the world, Armin is her second worse enemy because he is the only person that can break Eren from her influence.

I think it easy to gloss over the fact that a free Ymir means the end of Eldians individuality, without the king / slave relationship that restricted this power she is free to manipulate and control Eldians as she see fit, she is like a god that is in a symbiotic relationship with it creation not a monotheist god that let people have free will, some people think that if Eren/Ymir rumbling succeed the Eldians will be free, that is not the case, the Eldians are screwed no matter what happens, they never had a chance, they are the subject of Ymir.

I've been of the opinion that Ymir is using Eren, it seems that all the clues lead to this conclusion, I found this theory that goes through this idea in details, better than I could ever explain it.
I guess I just do not see Ymir, as portrayed so far, as interested in revenge, mind control of Eldians, or much of anything, for that matter. She is shown as submissive, blind, aloof and directionless. Her only acts that show some kind of persona are the freeing of the pigs ages ago, reviving Zeke, and not resisting Eren, if that's an act. It suggests some vague and detached yearning for a release, but without much willingness to do something for it, except occasionally and meekly. She is shown as a log dragged along by the flow of fate, no matter how much power dwells within. She had centuries for revenge and mind control, and didn't need Eren to do it. She didn't. The 145th did mind control, not Ymir. Her Norse mythology prototype is known for self-sacrifice to make the world, not megalomania. For all we were told, her self-enslavement to the royal blood was her sacrificial choice, a choice to avoid choosing really, indeed, the breaking out scene suggests it.

But if it wasn't, and instead she is vengeful and power hungry, and the royal blood is a check on her power, then Eren could not have helped her with that. If the idea was to bring in a non-royal to unlock the Coordinate and unleash Ymir, then Zeke, with his agenda, is a bad conduit. She needed somebody either sympathetic or more pliable, and there was a long royal line of that long before now. Moreover, the whole unlocking story comes from the 145th locking it for royals, not from some limitation of Ymir. If the royal blood is the key to control then Zeke would still be in control, not Eren. I am not good at mind-reading Isayama, so maybe you and SonOfDaws are right, but I just do not see how the transfer of control to Eren works or makes sense on this theory. Based on the story so far, it seems more plausible to me that a willful non-royal came along, and Ymir chose the new path of least resistance, like she always did, with some minimal effort to steer him along. It helped that he was in tune with her vague yearnings.

I am not so much concerned with Ymir's motives or the freedom of Eldians as with the two overlapping narratives that are in tension so far. On the one hand, we have the physical/technological thread that dominated most of the manga, the mechanics and biology of titans, the royal blood, the spinal fluid, the spiny parasite, etc. On the other hand, we have the more recent supernatural elements, Zeke's resurrection, the Paths, the immaterial transfer of powers through them, the mind realm. We always assumed that all titan-related elements came from the same source. But maybe not. The Spiny's recent reappearance out of Eren's beheaded body is suggestive. If the Spiny is indeed a parasite it is not in it for the mystique, it is in it to feed on something.

What if the Paths, the "spiritual" connection of all Eldians, the mind realm are not of Spiny's doing. What if Ymir was just its way in so it could corrupt it and feast on it, like the Biblical snake offering the apple to make them "gods", with a side of death. Manifesting the power physically to keep it going - the nine titans that terrorized the world, seemingly for the Eldian benefit, but sapping them of their humanity and willpower, and ultimately condemning them to a miserable fate on Paradis. The 145th was a perfect tool for the Spiny, its earthly image. It would explain why Ymir, its first and nearest victim, is the meekest of them all. And yet the most "powerful". It would explain how the blood and the fluids combine with the Paths. And it would mean that the Founding Titan is both of them, but neither. The Spiny's Founding might isn't its own, it "gives" Eldians a small fraction of what it takes from them, and in a corrupted physical form. And it can only do that while holding on to the key to its real "divine" source. This is a far-fetched theory, but Isayama once said that Ymir is the key to the whole story. Perhaps she is, literally.
 
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Shad

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@Jedidiyah we have so little to work with that we can spin this in so many different ways, based on each person preferences and biases, isayama is making this too abstract.

What do we really know about Ymir?

I guess I just do not see Ymir, as portrayed so far, as interested in revenge, mind control of Eldians, or much of anything, for that matter. She is shown as submissive, blind, aloof and directionless. Her only acts that show some kind of persona are the freeing of the pigs ages ago, reviving Zeke, and not resisting Eren, if that's an act. It suggests some vague and detached yearning for a release, but without much willingness to do something for it, except occasionally and meekly. She is shown as a log dragged along by the flow of fate, no matter how much power dwells within. She had centuries for revenge and mind control, and didn't need Eren to do it. She didn't. The 145th did mind control, not Ymir. Her Norse mythology prototype is known for self-sacrifice to make the world, not megalomania. For all we were told, her self-enslavement to the royal blood was her sacrificial choice, a choice to avoid choosing really, indeed, the breaking out scene suggests it.
The fact that she in Path, means that she doesn't have a concept of time, so we can't use the fact that she didn't do much in 2000 years as a justification of her passivity. I also believe she may have manipulated everything after her 'death'.

'The attack titan has always fought for freedom.'

The freedom of whom? Eldians were free when Ymir died, I believe the attack titan is the agent of Ymir in the real world, his where about where never clear, he is probably the only titan to not have been owned by a branch of the Royal family but instead is being passed down by random Eldians in secret, anybody that inherits the AT subscribes to the AT secret agenda, his job is to free her from the Path eventually, 2000 years is nothing for Ymir, why such a convoluted plan? I have no idea, but for somebody that sees the future and the past, no plan is risky. but if we assume that she was bound to serve the Royal blood, this could be the hack she needed to break those chains.

But I totally see where you coming from as well, and as I said everything is so abstract that all point of view make sense.

~
About the centipede, you mention that it a physical thing, but is it? When Ymir died and was eaten by her 3 daughters. did they eat the centipede? I don't think so. If the FT power turns out to be a physical thing, it would introduce so many plot holes in the story, I'm of the opinion that Eren's centipede scene is meant to misleads us.
~

What if the Paths, the "spiritual" connection of all Eldians, the mind realm are not of Spiny's doing. What if Ymir was just its way in so it could corrupt it and feast on it, like the Biblical snake offering the apple to make them "gods", with a side of death. Manifesting the power physically to keep it going - the nine titans that terrorized the world, seemingly for the Eldian benefit, but sapping them of their humanity and willpower, and ultimately condemning them to a miserable fate on Paradis. The 145th was a perfect tool for the Spiny, its earthly image. It would explain why Ymir, its first and nearest victim, is the meekest of them all. And yet the most "powerful". It would explain how the blood and the fluids combine with the Paths. And it would mean that the Founding Titan is both of them, but neither. The Spiny's Founding might isn't its own, it "gives" Eldians a small fraction of what it takes from them, and in a corrupted physical form. And it can only do that while holding on to the key to its real "divine" source. This is a far-fetched theory, but Isayama once said that Ymir is the key to the whole story. Perhaps she is, literally.


I also been hoping for a mind blowing ending that explains Ymir, Path and everything, but with 3 chapters left I have to lower down my expectations.
Let hope for the best!
 
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