An eerily intricate gem.
Shingeki No Kyojin (SNK for short) is a rather unique series in its genre, and for good reasons. While the fundamental Shounen plot points are ever present (main character is center of something horrible, vows to fulfill a quest that will most likely take him the entire series to accomplish), the series quickly grabs these concepts and uses them in witty, interesting ways to craft a richly-woven story.
The story is set in a world where Titans, large and abnormal humanoids, have almost driven mankind to extinction. The remaining humans live within a single, walled territory where they are protected from the Titans that dwarf them both literally and figuratively. After a colossal Titan opens up a hole in the wall, Titans raid the district offering residence to main character Eren Jaeger, whose mom is eaten by a Titan. Vowing to exterminate every single Titan in existence and becoming the hope of mankind, Eren and his adoptive sister Mikasa, alongside childhood friend Armin, aim to join the military.
The story is host to a broad cast of characters, many of which are realistically portrayed, making them relatable and go through equally relatable character development as they attempt to survive in this beautiful, yet cruel
world. Main character Eren starts out as somewhat one-dimensional, but soon goes through his own developments, gaining credibility as the story progresses. The story makes excellent use of its plot elements, the universe it has crafted, the characters and so on. As the mysteries of the Titans and the world are unravelled, shocking revelations and plot-twists quickly follow each other, yet all of them make sense, are cleverly foreshadowed and drive the plot forward and rarely, if ever, feel forced.
Being a shounen, there is ample action and my single critique is that the manga's artwork is not the most clean and fight sequences can sometimes get a bit overcomplicated in the way they are drawn, though the manga improves vastly over time. The anime is nothing short of beautiful in its fluid animation and colourful art.
This series is rather graphic and somewhat dark, which one must take into account before picking it up. If that is a plus for you or at the very least not a problem, I strongly recommend this as a must read. You won't be disappointed and will soon find yourself yearning for the next chapter/episode.