Cookies help us deliver our Services. By using our Services, you agree to our use of cookies. Learn More.

The Ending Of Attack On Titan Season 3 Explained

"Attack on Titan" Season 4 (also known as the Final Season) may already be two-thirds complete, but there are still plenty out there who are still catching up. Right now, somebody out there is watching the series for the very first time, and like the legions of anime fans who saw the series as it debuted, they are certainly asking themselves a litany of new questions at every turn. After all, while "Attack on Titan" does action and horror very well, it is mystery that truly drives the story forward. 

We see this in Seasons 1 and 2, which have viewers asking questions about the origin of the walls and the true nature of the titans. Thankfully, Season 3 of "Attack on Titan" answers those questions ... while also piling on a whole heap of new ones. For instance, we learn more about the humans from outside the walls, as well as how they're connected to the appearance of the Titans and Titan-Shifters. However, they're not overly friendly, and conflict soon erupts between the Scout Regiment and the interlopers. Thankfully the Scout Regiment just barely prevails over the foreign leader, a new Beast-like Titan-Shifter named Zeke, and finally gets to open the door to Eren's basement, where all their questions will finally be answered.

Unfortunately, the secrets of Erin's father present a new question for each one answered, and the whole ordeal can be bewildering. So, to answer those questions fans might have before they move on to Season 4, here is the ending of "Attack on Titan" Season 3 explained.

We learn the true history of the Erin's father, the walls, and the Titans

"Attack on Titan" first set up the mystery of Grisha Jeager's basement all the way back in its first season. To be fair, after so much time has passed, you would almost be forgiven for forgetting it ever existed. Nonetheless, by the end of Season 3, now that the Scout Regiment has successfully overthrown the Eldian government and installed Historia as Queen, defeated the three Titan-Shifters, and reclaimed Shiganshina, they can finally unveil the truth behind it all. In Eren's basement, the group finds a desk containing a photograph of Grisha with an unfamiliar woman and child.

Grisha's writings reveal the truth about the world outside the walls, how there are still thriving civilizations with advanced technology (such as photography). Later, we see Grisha's memories through Eren's dreams, revealing his upbringing living in a country named Marley, where he and other Eldians are persecuted by the government. Supposedly, millennia ago, an Eldian named Ymir made a deal with the Devil of All Earth to become the first Titan. When she died, her powers were split amongst her descendants, who used their Titan abilities to conquer and oppress Marley. Eventually, the Marleyans revolted and gain control of some of the Titans, overthrowing the Eldians.

The Eldian King then gathered a portion of his population and fled to Paradis Island, where he used his own Titans to create the walls. Since then, Marley has been persecuting their own Eldian population, transforming dissidents into Titans to keep the Paradis Eldians in check.

History isn't so black and white

These revelations shed a whole new light on the events of "Attack on Titan." In just a few episodes, the show's entire world became so much larger. Now there's a mythology and a dense history of international politics, prejudice, and war. And, as we all know from actual world history, these events are still just part of the picture. In pure "Attack on Titan" fashion, as soon as we think we that we have learned all there is to know about the background of the series, something new pops up that gives our expectations the "Fresh Prince" treatment — I.E., flipping them upside-down. And so, even as some mysteries close, new ones open.

In the same dream sequence where we see Grisha learn Eldian history from his own father, we see a much older Grisha learn an alternative story as an initiate in the Eldian Restoration Movement. In this version of events, Ymir and her subjects (I.E., her descendants) use their powers to benefit the world. And when the Marleyans selfishly sparked their revolution, the pacifist Eldian King simply ran to Paradis Island in the name of peace.

No matter what side you're on, conflict is inevitable

These prove not to be the last stunning secrets which are revealed to Eren in his dream. We also see Grisha marry the heir to the Eldian throne, fathering Zekeand raising him to infiltrate Paradis Island. However, he sides with Marley and sells out his parents. Grisha is sentenced to be titanized and sent to Paradis, but he then is saved at the last moment by the leader of ERM. Grisha then infiltrates the walls himself, starting his second family, and sparking the events of "Attack on Titan."

With all this new information in mind, Eren and the Eldians clear the remaining titans of Paradis Island before traveling to the coast for the first time in centuries. As joyous as such a moment is for many, however, Eren remains steadfastly cold. Now, he knows that beyond the island lies nothing but enemies, and it doesn't matter which version of history proves to be the correct one — because either way, Marley is gunning for them, and they must fight back.