Connie Springer’s character has often been overshadowed by his early and famous introduction as one of Attack On Titan‘s primary comic relief characters. Although he is undoubtedly simple-minded, he is by no means a simple man. Connie’s strengths lie in his emotions, and this has led him to have some famous emotional outbursts.
However, Connie’s emotional strength enabled him to not only survive some of the greatest traumas in AoT, including the loss of his family and closest friends, and acts of betrayal that would break a weaker person. Although unfortunate, these losses helped him actually grow into one of the best characters in all of AoT.
This article contains spoilers for both the Attack on Titan anime and manga.
10 Accepting His Limitations
One of the things that makes Connie one of Attack on Titan‘s best characters is his level of self-awareness. Connie understands that he isn’t all that smart, but he doesn’t let this hold him back from doing his duty or helping his friends. He knows he doesn’t have Armin’s brains or Jean’s leadership, but one thing he can do well is fight.
Rather than spend his life trying to be someone he’s not, Connie leaves the thinking and planning to others, and uses his small size and speed to protect his friends in battle. With these skills, Connie was able to save his friends from titans and human enemies for years.
9 His Connection With Sasha
Connie and Sasha were an obvious pair from the moment of their introduction, being first seen on screen in basically the same scene, and both standing out for comedic reasons. They quickly became fond of each other and could be seen fighting, working, or goofing off together for the rest of their military career.
Although he was not nearly as protective of Sasha as the overprotective Mikasa or Ymir were of Eren and Historia, Connie still considered her one of his closest friends, even calling her his other half. His ability to so quickly connect with someone—especially someone who felt like an outcast as Sasha did—shows his capacity for empathy, one of his key strengths.
8 Enduring The Loss Of His Family
Season two of AoT spent a lot of its early episodes trying to solve the mystery of how the titans had breached the unbroken Wall Rose, all the while presenting the solution right in front of the audience and the characters, and daring both to accept the impossible truth. When a skeletal titan unable to move was found at Connie’s old home, and even spoke to him welcoming him home, Connie didn’t want to believe it could be true.
However, Connie was eventually forced to admit that in fighting to free Wall Rose, he had been fighting against his family and his old neighbors. The titans inside the wall were his hometown’s population, transformed into mindless beasts. Connie had to live his life knowing that, in a cruel twist of fate, his mother had survived, but would be forever trapped as a titan. Arguably, this was one of the harshest traumas endured by any character.
7 Saving Shiganshina
After years of training as a soldier, and months of fighting in the Scouts, Connie joined the expedition to reclaim Wall Maria and fought in the Battle of Shiganshina. As one of the few soldiers left inside the wall after Reiner and Bertholdt’s attack, he played a key part in defeating his former friends. Fighting as a member of Levi Squad distinguished him as now being an elite, veteran Scout, and it showed during his performance.
Since he was one of only a handful of survivors, Connie had to bear the horror of the slaughter the battle became, as well as watch one of his best friends, Armin, eat his former friend Bertholdt as he screamed for mercy. It had to feel like murder, even though it was the only way to save Armin’s life.
6 Rescuing Jean
This seemingly blundered act is almost Connie’s character in a nutshell. It’s hilarious but brave. When Jean’s ODM gear fails during the effort to use Eren’s titan to reclaim Trost, he is forced to make a dash for a crushed corpse to get a replacement part. While he succeeds in fixing his gear, Jean finds himself trapped by a titan as he fails to calibrate the new part.
Just when all hope seems lost, Connie comes rushing in, ready to deliver the killing blow to save his friend—but instead, he misses and slams into the titan’s face. He doesn’t let this failure stop him, though, and he instantly uses this silly distraction as an opportunity to get the titan’s attention and draw it away from Jean, turning his hilarious mistake into an act of selfless heroism.
5 Saving Shiganshina (Again)
The Second Battle of Shiganshina was a surprise attack by the Marleyan military and the Warriors, and almost developed into a three-way battle due to the Jaegerist coup. However, despite having been seemingly betrayed by his comrades and friends (including Eren, Floch, and Onyankopon), Connie still went from his prison cell into battle to defend his friends and country.
This wasn’t exactly a selfless act, with Connie angrily yelling that he was sick of being betrayed; he fought on anyway, taking on titan shifters, Marleyan troops, and even having to put down his former comrades after Zeke turned them into titans. This was as close as Connie ever came to his breaking point, given what he nearly did to Falco, but he was still able to fight through it.
4 Empathizing With Reiner
While not nearly as long or inspiring as Erwin’s great speeches, Connie’s simple statement of empathy when he realizes he will have to kill Eren to save the world is one of his most profound moments. It is especially amazing considering that Jean had just the other night attacked Reiner when he finally learned how and why Reiner had killed Marco.
This was the moment that ended the bad blood between these friends turned enemies when they realized that they were now all going through the same struggle, but it was Connie who gave it voice. He was the only one with the emotional strength to not only say what they were all thinking but to say it with a sense of forgiveness.
3 Joining The Scouts
Connie had joined the Cadet Corps with the intention of becoming a member of the Military Police. But he didn’t do it out of a desire for service like Marco, or seeking comfort like Jean, he did it because it was hard to do and because he wanted to impress his family and friends in his small village home by making something of himself.
But after the Battle of Trost and getting inspired by Eren, Connie decided instead that he would join the Scouts and fight to reclaim the world from the titans. Connie felt as if he had let down his family and betrayed himself and his goals by not choosing the honor of becoming an MP; he tried to hide this maelstrom of emotions with a facade of numbness.
2 Stopping The Rumbling
While not everyone on Paradis agreed with Eren’s actions, Connie was one of the very few who actually took a stand against it. He fought and nearly gave his life to protect a world that had been making a united effort to kill him and his people because he knew he couldn’t live with himself if he let Eren commit genocide.
Throughout the battle, Connie felt weighed down by powerlessness. Fighting against Eren’s hordes of titans, he felt unable to stand amongst the titan shifters or Ackermanns, even blaming himself for Levi getting wounded. Just before he was transformed into a pure titan, however, he remarked to Jean with pride that as two ordinary scouts, they had managed to save the world.
1 Killing His Friends To Save The World
Having managed to escape Shiganshina with his comrades and supplies, Connie and the rest of the Scouts allied with the Warriors were horrified to discover that the Jaegerists were holding the Hizuru engineers hostage, and were preparing to destroy the flying boat. While trying to trick the Jaegerists into letting them board the flying boat to “chase the Warriors” to prevent them from stopping Eren.
However, Floch saw through their act, and Connie’s friends Daz and Samuel nearly killed Armin, forcing him to murder his friends. This almost unparalleled act of determination more than earned Connie his deserved reward of a new life in the outside world, and Historia’s protection of his revived mother.
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