Attack on Titan Chapter 139: How Disappointing?

Here’s how disappointing Attack on Titan’s Chapter 139 is:

It depends on the reader.

Some fans of the series thought that the chapter was extremely disappointing while others absolutely loved everything about it.

Most readers were probably somewhere in the middle, satisfied with how the conflict ended but disappointed with the distant future portrayed in the final panels.

So if you want to learn all about how and why exactly Attack on Titan’s Chapter 139 is disappointing, then this article is for you.

Let’s get into it!

Attack on Titan Chapter 139: How Disappointing? (All Info)

What Is Attack on Titan?

Let’s start at the beginning.

Attack on Titan is a popular manga that was developed in Japan.

For those unfamiliar, a manga is like a Japanese comic book.

Attack on Titan ran from 2009 to 2021.

It has many other media adaptations, including video games, anime, and more, but today, we’re just focusing on the manga.

Over the course of the run, Attack on Titan wove a twisted and intricate plot.

Chapter 139 is the last chapter in the whole series.

You know what that means.

We can’t have this conversation without spoilers.

So, please let this be your official warning.

There are massive spoilers ahead.

If you haven’t finished reading the manga, this will spoil the ending.

If you have only watched the anime, this will spoil the ending.

You’re good?

Ok, let’s talk about the chapter.

What Happened in Attack on Titan’s Chapter 139?

Let me go ahead and clarify something.

If people were disappointed with Chapter 139, it wasn’t because of the drawing.

It wasn’t because of the production value or some scandal tied to the manga (I’m not aware of any scandals, to be clear).

Any disappointment came solely from the story revelations within the chapter.

That means that in order to talk about disappointments, we have to talk about what happened in the chapter.

So, let’s do that.

Chapter 139 is the final chapter in the entire series.

It’s the ultimate conclusion.

In the chapters leading up to this, the final fight has more or less completed, but Eren is still on his feet.

In Chapter 139, Mikasa finally determines to end the conflict, and she kills Eren herself.

In the same chapter, Eren explains the full details of his plans to Armin.

In another scene, we see that Ymir was freed by Mikasa, not Eren.

We also see the end of the curse of the titans.

At the very end, we see Mikasa visit Eren’s grave, and it looks like peace has finally been achieved.

Don’t Forget About Attack on Titan’s Extra Pages

Well, that was the original version, but when the full anthology was released, there were extra pages in Chapter 139, and they added a little more to the story.

Not every detail is important, but the extra pages changed the final ending of the manga.

Instead of Mikasa visiting Eren’s grave alone, it shows her visiting multiple times, each time years have clearly passed.

First, she visits with her husband.

Eventually, she visits as an old woman, grandchildren in tow.

After this, we see the tree where Eren is buried continue to grow—it’s clearly larger than any tree should be.

Meanwhile, Eldia progresses into a modern society.

Then, we see a single panel of war striking Eldia, and the society is completely destroyed.

At the very end, Eren’s tree is impossibly large and surrounded by a forest.

A young kid finds the tree, and he sees an opening into its trunk.

It looks exactly like the tree that Ymir found when she became the first titan.

Was Attack on Titan’s Chapter 139 Disappointing?

That’s a lot of information, and the truth is that I can’t give you a simple yes or no as to whether or not this ending was disappointing.

Certainly, there were fans of the manga who were sorely disappointed.

There were also fans who loved the ending.

I sit somewhere in the middle.

There were good and bad things with the final chapter, and whether or not it was disappointing is going to be up to the reader.

The better way to explain this is to cover what most people complained about when they claimed disappointment.

I can also explain what people tended to like about the chapter.

Then, you can decide for yourself how disappointing it all is.

Why Was Attack on Titan’s Chapter 139 Disappointing? (3 Things)

First off, Attack on Titan ran for more than a decade.

That’s a lot of build-up, and for some people, no ending can be satisfying.

There’s too much hype, and the expectations are too high.

It’s important to remember that as you read.

But even accounting for that, the last chapter included some decisions that were clearly disappointing to many fans.

#1 An Abrupt Ending

The final arc was long.

There were plot twists, countless battles, hopeless struggles, and more.

But, the actual final clash with Eren took place in the space between two panels.

Mikasa finally decided to kill him, and then he was dead.

We didn’t even see the killing blow.

Technically, that was the end of Chapter 138, but it’s also covered in 139.

Once Eren is dead, there are a few dozen pages, and it’s all over.

We see the war end, all of the titans turn back into humans, the rise and fall of Eldia, and the threat of a new titan, all in a very short span.

It feels a bit rushed. 

Or, it’s too much information for one chapter.

You can look at it either way, but it was definitely a source of disappointment for many that all of this was covered at a breakneck pace.

Mikasa got character development in that she was able to move on and have a family without Eren.

It was done in basically two panels.

That’s fast.

#2 Mikasa’s Family

Another thing that bothered fans was specifically related to Mikasa.

Her defining character trait was her loyalty to Eren. 

She wasn’t just some obsessive character.

Her loyalty to him was actually baked into her DNA.

She literally got headaches when she defied him.

For her to overcome that and kill him was a major moment, but the chapter immediately goes from there to explaining how Eren doesn’t want her to move on, and it seems like that will be the case.

She did what was necessary but at a great personal cost.

And in the original release, she didn’t move on.

Then, these extra pages were added, and she suddenly had a family.

It felt out of character.

To be fair, some readers liked this development, but it’s definitely a complaint that shows up a lot in fan discussions.

#3 It’s All for Nothing

This is both my favorite and least favorite thing about the ending, and I’m not alone in this.

Eren resolved to genocide virtually all of humanity in order to protect his people, his friends, and Paradis Island.

That’s a huge deal.

In the end, all of his efforts bought the island a single generation of peace (as far as we can tell).

Then, Paradis is completely destroyed, and probably because of what Eren did.

This is actually a really good decision in my opinion.

It really drives home the fact that Eren was wrong.

He didn’t achieve a good thing with bad methods.

His methods were heinous, and it ultimately led to the destruction of Paradis, not its salvation.

But, the chapter didn’t end there.

It then went on to reintroduce the titans, and there’s really no point behind that extra move.

Why does the power of the titans need to repeat?

You can make philosophical arguments in favor of this decision, but ultimately, the fact that the titan curse still exists means that the entire manga was actually for nothing.

For all that happened, nothing actually changed.

It’s fair to call that a disappointing decision on the writer’s part.

What’s Good About Attack on Titan’s Chapter 139? (3 Elements)

That covers the disappointing parts, but the chapter had its good moments too.

Allow me to take you through them so that you’ll understand why plenty of people were happy and satisfied with the last chapter.

#1 Completing the Story

Even if parts of the ending feel rushed, it is a strong conclusion to the story.

All of the ups and downs led to a very clear culmination of events, and it was quite a journey.

The major characters are given resolution (even if death is the resolution for many of them), and there really aren’t any major loose ends left untied.

It’s a complete story, and for the most part, it feels good.

Eren’s death makes sense.

His plan is satisfying (more on that in the next section).

The titans are made human again.

Humanity is saved (if only barely).

The war ends.

It really is a solid ending in most respects.

#2 Eren’s Plan

Perhaps the most satisfying part of the ending for me was the revelation of Eren’s plan.

Many readers had speculated that Eren always expected Armin and Mikasa to stop him.

He fully confirms that in Chapter 139, and it really brings the story full circle.

It turns out that Eren didn’t exactly want to go on a genocidal rampage.

Instead, he was locked into that fate by the power of the Attack Titan.

He still bears responsibility for it all, but completes his character in a way that everyone can accept.

He was the villain, but he was a victim too—even if he was a victim to himself.

Most importantly, it makes sense that Eren would want Armin and Mikasa to win in the end.

That’s in line with his character, and until that was revealed, Eren’s actions didn’t feel quite right.

Making that clear was an excellent choice and a good thing to have in the last chapter.

#3 The End of the Titans

Even though the titan power eventually comes back in the last panel, the curse of the titans is lifted from the Eldian people.

Everyone who was forcefully turned into a titan was made human again.

The shifter titans were also made human again, meaning that the power of the titans wasn’t going to kill them after 13 years of use.

That was a good ending for everyone suffering from the curse and a good choice for the chapter.

It’s also important that the chapter makes this fact clear.

We don’t have to assume that titans became people again.

We got to see it.

Seeing the end of the titans is a truly gratifying moment in this chapter.

It’s also part of the reason why the last panel is so disappointing.