Warning: The following contents contains spoilers from episode 14 of Attack on Titan Season 4.
Eren Yeager certainly has a very conflicted relationship with the Titans. For years, the protagonist hated this race since they destroyed his hometown and killed his mother. But now everything has changed and Eren seems to have changed his opinion about them.
Eren and his older brother, Zeke Yeager, are launching a movement that promises to restore the power of Eldians, but that’s just a tattered excuse to destroy the world of Attack on Titan. However, a crucial fact emerged in Episode 14 of this season and, it seems, it can undermine the Yeager brothers’ plans.
Wielder of the previous Titans Influencing the Current Holder
There are many forms of control in Shingeki no Kyojin’s world, they are through brute force, mental control and memories. In the past, in order to put peace on the island of Paradis, King Karl Fritz erased the memories of his people using the power of the Founder.
We also learn about the issue of the Ackermans, who are warriors assigned to protect and serve the royal family. But that’s not all. When an individual inherits a Titan Shifter, he has to deal with the weight of facing the old memories of those who once had possession of that titan. In Episode 14, Eren told Armin that the old memories of the bearers of a Shifter titan can influence the emotions of the current user.
But how has that influenced everything so far? When Armin became the bearer of the colossal titan, he went on to visit Annie’s immovable body. However, it is worth remembering that when Armin did not have the colossal’s possession, his feelings for Annie were only from one colleague to the other. The fact that Armin is caring about Annie is now the fruit of the love Bertolt — former bearer of the Colossal — had for her. Did you get that? Ancient memories have influenced the present ones.
So, is it possible that Eren is also being controlled?
The answer is yes. Even though Eren thinks he is exempt from all kinds of mental controls, whether internal and external. Old episodes have suggested that Eren is facing someone within himself as if it were an evil copy that forces him to perform such genocidal acts, and the concrete proof of this was when he looked in the prison mirror and said the word “Fight” twice.
And to be honest, that’s not surprising. Eren is dealing with the weight of carrying the Founder titan, the Attack Titan and, the latest, Warhammer Titan, so his mind must be in chaos. Frieda Reiss, like her family, wanted to keep control of the Reiss family under the Eldians.
On the other hand, Lara Tybur, Eldian loyal to Marley, wanted the defeat of the people of the island as well as everyone in the outside world. Apart from his own father, Grisha Yeager, these memories may be conflicting in Eren’s mind, causing him to act on impulse and not think so much when deciding something.