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Bertholdt Hoover is a graduate of the 104th Cadet Corps, wherein he was ranked 3rd, and is a childhood friend of Reiner Braun.

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Colossal Titans
◄ Preceded by Bertholdt Hoover
(Unknown-850)
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Unknown Armin Arlelt
(850-Current)
Quote1 I feel like, no matter how all this plays out, I can accept whatever happens. That's right, nobody's in the wrong. There's nothing we could do. Because this world...is just...that cruel. Quote2
— Bertholdt's thoughts during the Battle of Shiganshina District[2]

Bertholdt Hoover (ベルトルト・フーバー Berutoruto Fūbā?) was a graduate of the 104th Cadet Corps and a former member of the Scout Regiment. He ranked 3rd in his class, and was described by others as a weak-willed and quiet person. He was rarely seen without Reiner Braun, his close childhood friend, both of whom originated from an unknown area which he refers to as his hometown. As the Colossal Titan, he was one of humanity's greatest threats.

Along with Reiner and Annie Leonhart, he was a person that possessed the ability to transform into a Titan. In the year 845, he used his power to help Reiner breach Wall Maria and infiltrate the military for unknown reasons.

Appearance

Human form

Bertholdt was a rather tall, slender young man. He had short, dark hair, pale green eyes, thin eyebrows and an elongated face. He was seen mainly in his cadet uniform, and after he entered the Scout Regiment, he wore their uniform with the green hood on missions. He was also noted by others to always be sweating. In his casual clothes, Bertholdt wore a blue sweater with a white button down underneath and tan pants,[3] though he later switched to a pale blue button down with gray pants.[4]

Colossal Titan form

As the Colossal Titan, he possessed a very distinctive appearance and a number of unusual features. He grew to roughly 60 meters tall, making him around four times the height of any other intelligent Titan seen thus far.

Bertholdt's Colossal Titan form was one of the more heavily-deformed Titans seen in the series - he appeared to lack skin entirely and his jaw and facial structure seemed to be heavily altered from his human form. It was also constantly releasing jets of steam from the surface of its body, in a manner that parallels his frequent nervous sweating. His feet were also quite different to those of a human and other Titans, as they were swollen and pillar-like in appearance. He had slim and disproportionately long arms in comparison to his head, body and legs.

Personality

Bertholdt was a quiet young man who identified himself as someone with a weak will that follows popular opinion. Likewise, his commandant noted him to be a person with great potential, but an utter lack of initiative.[5] He was further described by Eren Jaeger as being taciturn, and Bertholdt tended to remain in the background unless necessary. By his own admission, he was something of a coward and was noted for his low self-esteem. Bertholdt's withdrawn behavior created the impression of him being the least emotionally compromised of the three infiltrating warriors. Particularly, his distant act made it seem that he held little remorse over his actions, instead only caring about the well-being of his partner, Reiner.[6] However, when confronted by his former 104th comrades and questioned about their friendship, he revealed himself to be far more conflicted and guilt-ridden than it originally appeared.[7]

Bertholdt underwent a serious change in character shortly before and during the Battle of Shiganshina. He became detached, indifferent and cold, allowing him to fulfill his savage duty more efficiently. Bertholdt remained calm and composed, and did not feel sorry or bad when he told his former friends that he will kill them and all humans inside the Walls because he had decided to do so. He was unfazed by Armin's attempt at manipulating him by bringing up Annie, did not feel panic or dread when other Scout Regiment soldiers were going to kill the helpless Reiner and he had to leave him to himself. He noted how Armin is unable to do anything to him as long as he shakes in fear of his presence.

Bertholdt does not show complete disregard for the human race and his 104th former friends. He showed panic and slight tears when he, Reiner, and Annie left Marco Bodt to die.[2] When confronted by Armin, he refers to his former friends as "precious comrades" and repeatedly states that they are not at fault. This leaves the impression that Bertholdt's reasons for wanting them to die are not personal, and are due to unknown factors outside of their current comprehension or knowledge. Bertholdt once more shows sympathy for his former friends by expressing his disappointment in the waste of Armin's intelligence as he dies. He then decides to burn him as quickly as possible to put him out of his misery.[8]

Bertholdt came to accept his villainous self, and rationalized that none of it was his or anyone's fault, but that the world is cruel, and all of it was inevitable. When the blast of his transformation failed to kill all of the soldiers, he expresses his disappointment at his former friends' continued survival.

Despite his calmness and utter fearlessness in the face of death and destruction, he was absolutely terrified of dying himself. As Armin's Pure Titan approached him, Bertholdt begged his former friends to save him then cried and screamed for Reiner and Annie before being brutally devoured.[9]

History

Warriors beyond the Walls

Bertholdt and his comrades set out for the Walls

Bertholdt originates from a place beyond the Walls he refers to as the "hometown."[10] At some point in his life, Bertholdt gained the power of the Colossal Titan.

In the year 845, Bertholdt set out on a mission to exterminate humanity within the walls and retrieve the Founding Titan, along with his childhood friends, Reiner Braun, Annie Leonhart and Marcel, the wielders of the Armored Titan, Female Titan, and another Titan. On their journey, the four young Warriors were ambushed by a Titan slumbering in the earth that tried to devour Reiner. As he stood in fear, Reiner was almost killed until Marcel pushed him away but was grabbed and devoured instead while Reiner, Bertholdt, and Annie watched in horror.[11]

Story

The Fall of Shiganshina arc

Bertholdt transforms into his Colossal Titan form at Shiganshina District, terrorizing its population and kicking a hole in the district's gate. The attack leads to falling debris scattering across the town, crushing houses in the process. Immediately after his attack, Bertholdt reverts to his human self, while Titans enter the city from outside the Walls, resulting in the population being set on by them.[12]

After the Armored Titan breaches Wall Maria, Bertholdt manages to enter alongside Reiner and Annie. Bertholdt and Reiner were among the many refugees that were informed of the food shortage.[13]

During the abandonment of the wall Bertholdt, Annie, and Reiner forged their family records and passed themselves off as survivors of a small hunting village on the south side of Wall Maria.[10]

Humanity's Comeback arc

Bertolt

Bertholdt shortly after enlisting

Two years after the destruction of Wall Maria, in the year 847, Bertholdt enlists in the military and becomes a member of the 104th Cadet Corps along with Reiner and Annie. On the first day of training, Bertholdt is one of the few students who the commandant Keith Sadies does not attempt to haze, as he is able to tell that Bertholdt has already been through a rite of passage.[5]

After failing repeatedly to operate the omni-directional mobility gear, Eren seeks advice from his fellow cadets and is sent to Bertholdt and Reiner for help by Marco Bodt. Though initially unfriendly towards Eren and Armin, Bertholdt and Reiner quickly warm up to them after learning they are from Shiganshina District and are still willing to enlist in the Scout Regiment. They share their desire to return to their lost hometown and agree to give Eren advice. The next day they witness Eren's last attempt to pass where he fails yet again until Sadies notices that his equipment is defective. Upon being resupplied Eren passes the test as Reiner and Bertholdt watch impressed with Eren's determination.[citation needed]

At some point during their training, the cadets complete a snowstorm training exercise. However, Christa, Ymir, and Daz do not return. The next morning when Eren, Mikasa, and Armin decide to go looking for them, Bertholdt and Reiner decide to accompany them, as well as Conny, Sasha and Marco. However, they hear a loud almost thunder-like noise and head out to investigate but discover Ymir returning to camp with Daz who is tended to by the others indoors.[citation needed]

Eventually Bertholdt graduates 3rd in his class, behind Reiner.[citation needed]

The Struggle for Trost arc

Bertholdt escapes Eren

Bertholdt escapes Eren

Five years after his attack on Shiganshina District, Bertholdt transforms into the Colossal Titan at the entrance of Trost District. He immediately repels the Military cadets on top of Wall Rose with vapor from his high-temperature body and then breaches the gate into the city. As he sets his eyes on the Wall's fixed artillery, the Colossal Titan swings its arm and destroys the Wall's defenses. Surviving the assault, Eren launches himself at the Colossal Titan's neck and attempts to attack its nape, leading to Bertholdt dissolving his Titan's body and Eren missing his target. His attack prompts the Garrison to begin the Colossal Titan contingency plan for Trost District, and results in Titans entering the city.[14]

Upon reentering Trost, Bertholdt takes part in the attack against the Titans. However, with the supply team stuck in Trost's Military headquarters, he is essentially immobilized with many of his teammates on a rooftop. He, Reiner, Annie discuss what to do next, with Reiner suggesting that they wait for the Titans to gather to them before they make a move. Mikasa asks them if they have seen Eren, and Reiner points out Armin, telling her he was in Eren's squad.[citation needed]

Mikasa takes charge, leading an attempt to get to the military headquarters in Trost, which Bertholdt takes part in. Conny, Mikasa, and Armin arrive shortly afterward, with an abnormal Titan in tow that promptly begins to kill the Titans swarming the outside of the building.[citation needed]
Bertholdt listens to Armin's plan

Bertholdt listens to Armin's plan

Bertholdt takes part in Armin's plan to clear out the smaller Titans that have infiltrated the headquarters' armory. After the Titans are lured together by the cadets and blinded via gunfire, he and six other cadets attack them, in an effort to clear out all of the Titans in one move. As the other cadets move out after resupplying, Bertholdt is among the soldiers that stay behind to observe the abnormal Titan as it is overwhelmed by the mindless Titans.[citation needed]

Suspecting that the Titan is intelligent, Bertholdt, Annie, and Reiner argue that they should help it and prevent it from being eaten. They are silenced when the Titan breaks away from the Titans devouring it to kill one final Titan, before collapsing. They prepare to leave, but are shocked at the sight of Eren Jaeger emerging from the Titan's nape. Bertholdt, Jean, Annie, and Reiner are placed on standby with their fellow cadets, and are ordered not to tell anyone what they witnessed.[15]

Later, after seeing what appears to be Titan vapor from inside the city, he and the soldiers who witnessed Eren's emergence from the Titan's nape scale the Wall to see what is happening. Over the Wall, they see Eren protecting Mikasa and Armin from cannon fire, with a shield made from the torso of his Titan form.[citation needed]
Bertholdt looks back as he leaves Marco behind

Bertholdt looks back as he leaves Marco behind

While watching Eren attempt to seal the hole in Wall Rose, Reiner and Bertholdt discuss the situation. Bertholdt is concerned that the Titans will kill Eren before they learn anything, but Reiner dismisses Bertholdt's concerns, saying that, with Eren's transformation, they finally have a clue after searching for five years. Marco overhears their conversation and asks the two of them what they are talking about. Though Reiner initially plays it off as a joke, he quickly overpowers Marco and forces Annie to remove his ODM gear. Bertholdt warns them both of an approaching Titan, and they leave Marco behind to die. As Marco begs for his life, Bertholdt is shocked to see Reiner asking why Marco is being eaten alive.[2]

Eve of the Counterattack arc

After the battle in Trost, Bertholdt joins the Scout Regiment with Mikasa, Reiner Braun, Eren, Conny, Sasha Braus, Christa Lenz, Armin, Ymir, Jean Kirschtein and a few others.[16]

The 57th Exterior Scouting Mission arc

Bertholdt and Ymir see the Titans running

Bertholdt and Ymir see the Titans running

Bertholdt participates in the Scout Regiment's 57th exterior scouting mission into Titan territory, sticking close to his friend Reiner the whole time.[17] The mission is fairly slow paced for him until he arrives at the Forest of Giant Trees with his group and is ordered to be on standby. He waits in the trees with his comrades so that they may stop any Titan from entering the forest where their superiors are.[18] After awhile of little events, a loud Titan scream can be heard from within the forest and several Titans begin to charge in. Bertholdt is among the soldiers as they attempt to stop the Titans from entering.[19]

After the Titans are gone beyond the soldiers' watch point, Bertholdt sees the smoke signal indicating the time for retreat. He regroups with his comrades and they head back to the walls. Upon re-entering the gate, the Scout Regiment receives comments and criticisms for their loss of life and lack of results.[20]

Clash of the Titans arc

During the assault on Stohess District, several of the 104th Cadet Corps recruits including Bertholdt are kept at an outpost in Wall Rose under suspicions of a Titan spy being among them. They are under the watch of Miche Zacharius and a number of Scout Regiment soldiers until further notice. While they wait inside, Sasha and Conny complain of boredom and mention that their villages are nearby while Reiner and Bertholdt sit across from each other playing chess. Reiner then expresses suspicions of their reason for staying in this location as they are unarmed despite the rest of the soldiers being fully equipped. Sasha then begins to shout about hearing footsteps but is brushed off briefly. She continues to shout until Nanaba stops at the window, opens it, and informs the 104th that several Titans were just spotted to the south of Wall Rose, saying that they must mount their horses quickly without gear as they are pressed for time. Reiner expresses panic at the notion of Titans within the Wall to Bertholdt before they begin to tack up their horses and the soldiers move out with the goal of evacuating and informing citizens.[3]

Bertholdt and Reiner agree to help Conny with the southern territory

Bertholdt and Reiner agree to help Conny with the southern territory

Miche asks if anyone is familiar with the area, and Sasha notes that both she and Conny know it. Asking to go to his village after leading the southern group, Conny accepts the task from Miche and is joined by Reiner and Bertholdt for aid. During their escape, the Titans begin to sprint and start to catch up to the soldiers and their horses. Miche realizes this and takes charge to divert their focus and separates from the group so that they may escape. Watching him go, Bertholdt breaks off into one of the four teams as they split up and leave.[3]

After discovering Conny's village to be deserted,[21] the Southern team meets up with Ymir and Christa's team, and they decide to take refuge for the night in Utgard Castle.[22] At some point during the night, the castle comes under attack by Titans and the recruits are forced to defend the interior from the smaller Titans that have invaded. After Reiner takes off on his own to investigate, Bertholdt offers a strange observation of his friend's "bad habit" of risking himself for others. When a Titan manages to break through a stairwell door, he comes to Reiner's defense with a pitchfork and helps fight it off. The two reaffirm their promise to survive and return to their home together.[23]

After a second Titan manages to enter and injure Reiner, he helps Ymir toss it out a window. Afterward, he begins to behave in a withdrawn manner and responds to questions about how Reiner was in the past with a strange comment about how Reiner has changed and is no longer a "Warrior." However, he refuses to elaborate further on the subject.[23]

Bertholdt and Reiner are shocked

Bertholdt and Reiner are shocked to see Ymir's Titan

Eventually, their superiors are killed by the attacking Titans and the rookies are left defenseless. This drives Ymir to reveal herself to be a Titan, using her powers to protect the others. Bertholdt and Reiner are shocked when they find out that Ymir was the same Titan that ate their friend years back. Thanks to her efforts and the timely arrive of Hange's soldiers, the rookies are saved.[24]

The Scout Regiment takes stock of their injured on top of Wall Rose and when Eren sympathizes Reiner and Bertholdt about being driven out of their hometown, Bertholdt uses that to push Reiner to remember their desire to go back to their hometown. His cryptic words about how there is barely anything left to do cause Reiner to remember something.[10]

Reiner and Bertholdt begin their transformation

Reiner and Bertholdt begin their transformations

Reiner confesses to Eren that he and Bertholdt are the Armored and Colassal Titans and broke down the Wall five years ago to destroy humanity. Not wanting to have his secret revealed, Bertholdt plays along with Eren's claim that Reiner is merely tired and not thinking straight. Reiner ignores him, leaving Bertholdt clearly uneasy. When Eren refuses to go with them, Reiner tries to take him by force, prompting Bertholdt to blow his cover and asks Reiner if they are going to do it now. Before they can take Eren, Mikasa intervenes and attacks both Bertholdt and Reiner. She nearly kills Bertholdt, but Reiner saves him and the two use their injuries to transform into their Titan forms.[10]

While Eren changes into a Titan and fights with Reiner on the ground below, Bertholdt remains anchored to the Wall with his ribs. He attacks the Scout Regiment, capturing both the unconscious Ymir and an unnamed Scout Regiment soldier. Bertholdt swallows both. The Scouts attack him in return, trying to overwhelm him due to the Colossal Titan's slower speed, but Bertholdt emits a blast of scalding steam, forcing them back. Rather than disappearing though, he remains stationary and continuously billows heat to keep the Scouts away.[25]

When Reiner begins losing his battle with Eren, he drags the two of them just beneath Bertholdt's position on the wall and roars. In response to the signal, Bertholdt breaks free and plummets down on top of the two Titans.[25] His Titan lands in an explosion of steam and hot air strong enough to push back even the soldiers still hanging on the Wall. This gives Reiner the opportunity to overpower Eren and bite him out of his Titan. Bertholdt emerges out of his own Titan voluntarily, carrying Ymir and now wearing the omni-directional mobility gear of the soldier he had swallowed. He grapples on to Reiner's Titan and the two of them flee with Eren and Ymir.[26]

Bertholdt and Reiner take a break in a Forest of Giant Trees to rest until sunset, when ordinary Titans will become inactive. Eren regains consciousness during this time[26] and begins arguing with Reiner. At one point Reiner becomes completely confused, concerning Bertholdt. When pressed by Ymir, Bertholdt admits that this is not the first time that Reiner has behaved this way. Ymir concludes that convincing himself that he is a soldier is how Reiner is able to live with himself, considering all the damage he has done as a Warrior.[6]

While Reiner is upset from Ymir's analysis, Eren asks Bertholdt how he felt when he told them that his mother was eaten because a piece of the Wall he kicked landed on their house and she could not escape. Bertholdt confesses that he felt sorry for Eren, but Eren loses any sympathy he might have had for them.[6]

Bertholdt embarrassed by his feelings for Annie

Bertholdt embarrassed by his feelings for Annie

Bertholdt and Reiner spot Scout Regiment signal flares sooner than expected[6] and prepare to leave. He makes sure that Reiner is in a "Warrior" state of mind and Reiner assures him that he is. Reiner also tells Bertholdt that he should confess his feelings to Annie, after they bring her, Christa, and the "Founding Titan" back to their hometown. Bertholdt is flustered by the suggestion, but Reiner tells him that they are both murderers with short lives ahead and that who else would understand what they have been through other than one of their own.[11]

Reiner subdues Eren while Bertholdt asks Ymir if she remembers who she ate to become a human again. She does not, but apologizes realizing that it must have been one of Bertholdt and Reiner's friends. Bertholdt is not upset though, and tells her that it was also the same for him. Once Eren is secured, the group of them flee with Bertholdt carrying Ymir and Reiner carrying Eren, but when Ymir sees the signal flares, she realizes that Christa is likely with the Scouts and asks to retrieve her. When Reiner says no, she begins interfering with Bertholdt's maneuvering and threatens to take Eren away from them and go back to the Scouts.[11]

Without much choice, they wait at the edge of the forest for Ymir. When she returns, Reiner transforms into the Armored Titan to escape and Bertholdt grapples on to his shoulder while carrying Eren.[11] Despite their head start, several of their former comrades catch up to them on horseback and Bertholdt calls out for Reiner to protect him. The Armored Titan covers the front of his neck with his hands, providing a small sheltered space for Bertholdt and the captive Eren.[7]

Bertholdt says their friendship was not a lie

Bertholdt says their friendship was not a lie

Undeterred, Jean and Conny bang on Reiner's armor and remind Bertholdt of the times they shared together, even the mundane and silly moments like using Bertholdt's sleeping positions to predict the weather. When they ask him if their friendship was a lie, Bertholdt breaks down and tells them that it was not. He insists that he did not want to kill people, but someone has to be the one to get blood on their hands.[7]

Their conversation is interrupted when Erwin leads a horde of Titans into Reiner.  The Armored Titan buckles beneath the swarm, forcing Reiner to remove his hands in order to break free and exposing Bertholdt and Eren to attack. Mikasa takes advance of the opportunity and Bertholdt narrowly dodges her attempt to kill him.[7]

Bertholdt threatens to pulverize Armin

Bertholdt threatens to pulverize Armin

Armin lands on the side of Reiner’s head and provokes Bertholdt by telling him that Annie is being tortured while he and Reiner are about to escape without her. This drives Bertholdt into a fit of rage and he turns to attack Armin, creating an opening for Erwin to cut Eren free and sever one of Bertholdt's grappling lines. Bertholdt falls, dangling from his one remaining line, and is unable to stop Eren from being taken away.[7]

During Eren's escape, he strikes a particular Titan and screams. The sound reverberates through Bertholdt and Reiner as the smaller Titans charge and devour the one Eren had faced. As they realize with horror that Eren does indeed hold the Founding Titan they are looking for, Eren's rage turns to them and he screams for them to get away. The Titans then turn to attack Bertholdt and Reiner as well. The two are about to be overwhelmed, with Reiner being unable to protect Bertholdt, when Ymir comes back to aid them.[27]

Bertholdt apologizes to Ymir

Bertholdt apologizes to Ymir

After the battle, the three catch their breaths on top of Wall Maria, having managed to survive. Reiner asks Ymir why she bothered to save them and she says that she is grateful for what they did for her, because if they had not come to break the Wall, she would never have woken from her nightmare. She knows they cannot go back empty-handed, so she is returning what she had borrowed. Bertholdt, overcome with emotion, thanks her and apologizes.[27]

The Uprising arc

Bertholdt runs up to Reiner

Bertholdt witnesses Reiner's defeat

Some time after retreating to Shiganshina District, Bertholdt and Reiner meet up with the Beast Titan. They try to convince him to help them rescue Annie, but the Titan refuses and savagely beats Reiner when he tries to use his Armored Titan to force him to help. As Bertholdt goes to remove Reiner from his Titan form, the operator of the Beast Titan declares himself the winner and tells them that they will have to wait to rescue Annie until after they have secured Eren and the Founding Titan.[28]

Bertholdt is seen alongside Reiner atop the Wall at Shiganshina District awaiting the Scouts arrival.[29]

Return to Shiganshina arc

Prior to the arrival of the Scout Regiment, Bertholdt, Reiner, and Zeke wait patiently atop Wall Maria, above Shiganshina. Zeke assures them that Annie is not being tortured and reminds them of their mission, and Bertholdt agrees to put aside thoughts of Annie for now, claiming that no one else has to go through hell except for them. Remembering the pain of Annie, Marco, and Reiner, Bertholdt expresses a desire to end all the fighting. The quadruped Titan appears below and alerts them of the Scouts' imminent arrival, and the three Warriors share a last toast before preparing for battle.[2]

As Bertholdt and Reiner jog along Wall Maria, Reiner notes that the two of them will be in separate positions, and that Bertholdt will have to think and act for himself, rather than wait for Reiner's signal. Reiner admits that he never thought of Bertholdt as particularly reliable before, as he tends to leave things to others when it matters in spite of his immense ability, but not anymore. Bertholdt affirms his desire to end things, and Reiner tells him to keep up that attitude until he can be reunited with Annie. The two part ways.[2]

Bertholdt sees Eren transform

Bertholdt is hiding from the Scouts

When the Scout Regiment makes it to Shiganshina District, they begin rushing the gate with a hundred soldiers to confuse the enemy. As Eren flies up above the breach in Wall Maria's southern gate, he prepares to transform. As this is happening, Bertholdt watches the Scouts from within a barrel, equipped with his ODM gear.[4]

After some time, he wonders why Reiner has not given the signal, and whether or not he is okay. Upon hearing the Armored Titan's roar, the Beast Titan throws the barrel with Bertholdt inside towards Reiner's position. Bertholdt prepares to transform, but upon seeing Reiner's damaged Titan form, abandons the plan and rushes over to check on his friend. He discovers that while Reiner survived the Thunder Spears, he was forced to transfer his consciousness to his Titan body. He tells Reiner that he will need to move a little, and if he cannot, then he will have to prepare for the worst. Bertholdt declares that he is ending this and heads towards the Scouts.[2]

As he approaches, Armin Arlelt calls out to him and asks to negotiate. Bertholdt gives him the Warriors' conditions: Eren, and the demise of humanity within the Walls. He calls this the harsh truth of reality, and claims it has already been decided. When Armin asks who decided this, Bertholdt admits that he did. Armin tries to bait him by telling Bertholdt about Annie's supposed torture again, but Bertholdt no longer falls for it and expresses doubt the Military Police even has her.[2]

Bertholdt cuts off Armin's escape

Bertholdt cuts off Armin's escape

When Armin tries to leave, Bertholdt cuts him off, taunting him about wanting to talk. He asks if Armin thought talking about Annie would upset him, because Bertholdt is supposed to be meek and timid. Bertholdt knows that Armin's "negotiation" is actually just buying time for the Scouts to surround him and finish off Reiner. He only agreed to talk to Armin because he wanted to see if he would break down and ask for forgiveness, like the last time he was faced with his former comrades. But he no longer feels conflicted about what he must do, and tells Armin that even though the Scouts are his cherished comrades, he still intends to kill them all. He acknowledges that they are not devils, and they have not done anything wrong, but they need to die regardless.[2]

Mikasa tries to kill Bertholdt

Mikasa attacks Bertholdt

Without warning, Mikasa appears behind Bertholdt and tries to go for the killing blow, but Bertholdt quickly blocks her blade. Despite losing an ear, Bertholdt manages to escape using his ODM gear. He maneuvers high into the sky, noting that he barely feels any fear and thinks to himself that no matter how things turn out, he will be able to accept the outcome, as nobody is truly in the wrong: the world is just simply cruel.

He transforms, and the resulting blast engulfs all of the nearby soldiers except for Levi Squad and levels the central portion of Shiganshina. The Colossal Titan then starts to pick up buildings damaged from the blast and throws them all over the district; many of them have burst into flames due to the heat from his Titan, spreading the fire to the rest of the district.[2]

The Colossal Titan kicks Eren

Bertholdt kicks Eren's Titan

As the Colossal Titan, he begins to toss flaming houses and buildings around the district, setting nearly the entire city ablaze. He then heads north towards Commander Erwin's position but is intercepted by Eren and the 104th recruits. Eren charges at Bertholdt's leg, attempting to stop him in his tracks. With little effort, Bertholdt lifts the leg with Eren's Titan dangling from it before sending Eren crashing into the top of Wall Maria with a swift kick. The group charge at him to create a diversion for Mikasa to launch the Thunder Spear at his nape. He emits a searing hot gas which forces Mikasa to retreat and injures Conny in the process. After the group has sought temporary safety, he continues to destroy the district.[30]

As Reiner recovers and begins to fight the Levi Squad, Bertholdt notes that he was hoping to kill everyone with his transformation, but calmly shrugs it off, saying he is used to such trials. He approaches Eren and Armin, wondering what Armin will do. Seconds later, Eren loses his balance and falls to the ground, motionless.

Armin tries to withstand the Colossal Titan's heat

Bertholdt uses heat to blow Armin away

Bertholdt, thinking Eren is already beaten, decides to blow Armin away, and unleashes a burst of steam from his body. However, much to his surprise, Armin latches onto his teeth and refuses to let go. He questions what Armin could possibly hope to achieve with Eren already beaten, but decides to finish him quickly and launches one final burst, charring Armin's skin and burning his hair off, sending him falling lifelessly to the rooftops below.

After observing Armin's burnt body, Bertholdt moves over to Eren's Titan body, only to find it a hardened shell. He then realizes too late that Armin was buying Eren time to get out of his Titan form and used Bertholdt's attack as a smokescreen. At that moment, a human Eren appears from behind, latching onto the Colossal Titan's nape and slicing it open, severing Bertholdt's arms and legs, before ripping him out and dragging him down to the roof below, where Armin's body is lying.[8]

After being defeated and dragged out of his Colossal Titan, Bertholdt is approached by Zeke and the Cart Titan. Anticipating capture, Eren begins to slit Bertholdt's throat, but Zeke tells Bertholdt that he can not save him this time. When Levi pursues Zeke, Eren urges him to give Armin the Titan injection so that Bertholdt can be fed to Armin to turn him into a Titan and save him from death. However, another soldier arrives with Erwin Smith, unconscious but also alive. The soldiers debate who should be given the Titan serum between Erwin or Armin, as Bertholdt lies unconscious and at their mercy.

Bertholdt is eaten by Armin's Pure Titan

Bertholdt is eaten by Armin's Pure Titan

After a fair bit of debating, Levi is left with the decision and finally decides on who to give the serum to. Bertholdt awakes to find himself at the complete mercy of Armin's Pure Titan. He screams, begging his former allies to save him as they watch, tears in their eyes. Bertholdt cries out for Annie and Reiner before he is eaten alive by Armin.[9]

Abilities

Bertholdt graduated 3rd among the cadets in the 104th and was noted as the best user of the omni-directional mobility gear among them.[5] He managed to kill a small Titan without the use of the omni-directional mobility gear.[15] Bertholdt was skilled in melee combat, being able to defend against and even temporarily overpower Mikasa Ackermann.[2]

Power of the Titans

Bertholdt was able to transform into a 60-meter Titan referred to as the Colossal Titan (超大型巨人 Chō ōgata Kyojin?). In this form, Bertholdt was able to look over the Walls. He was also able to retain his intelligence when he transformed as shown when he targeted the network of cannons that line the top part of Wall Rose first as a means to quickly cripple the Wall's defense. The Colossal Titan form, due to its large size, is incredibly slow, which makes it easy for anyone with the Omni-directional mobility gear to move around him. Like Eren, Bertholdt was able to induce a partial transformation, as he was able to manifest the upper portion of his Titan form on top of Wall Rose to fight against the Scouts and not his entire Titan.[10] His Titan was noteworthy for being able to form and dissolve almost instantly, as opposed to most others.[31] This may be related to his ability to generate incredible heat, as he generated a massive cloud of steam before vanishing.[14]

  • Regeneration: Bertholdt, like all other Titans, had the power to automatically regenerate any wounds sustained and even entire parts of his body that are lost. This power also extended to his human form, as shown in the fight against Mikasa on top of Wall Rose with Bertholdt losing part of his arm and suffering a critical slash to his neck.[10] Later on, in the Forest of Giant Trees, Bertholdt was seen with his arm regenerated, and his neck fully healed.[6] He also received a deep cut in the chest at hands of Erwin Smith, but he regenerated anyway.[27]
  • Enhanced Strength: The Colossal Titan is physically the strongest Titan shown so far in the series due to its immense size and along with the Armored Titan, are the only ones who are capable of damaging and tearing down the gates of the Walls. With a single strike of his Titan foot, Bertholdt was able to breach the south gate of Wall Maria easily, damaging nearby buildings in the Shiganshina District.[12] A sweeping motion with one of his arms was enough to destroy all the cannons on top of Wall Maria as well as damage the upper portion of the Wall.[5] Bertholdt's strikes had enough force to similarly damage the upper portion of Wall Rose and create a shock wave able to push back people, wounding them in the process. He was able to stop Eren's Titan form by simply jumping off a Wall and not even in his complete form. This strike was strong enough to also leave an enormous crater in the ground.[25]
Colossal Titan's steam release

The Colossal Titan's heavy steam emission

  • Steam Generation / Heat Channeling: Since Bertholdt's Titan form was far too slow to catch more agile opponents with the ODM gear, he possessed a powerful defense mechanism that involved him releasing large amounts of extremely hot and pressurized steam from his body. The steam had enough force to deflect any cables shot from the ODM gear and burn away or repel close-range fighters. It was shown that Bertholdt could sustain the effort of producing large quantities of steam for a timed/limited duration, as seen in the fight on the top of Wall Rose. Although all Titans possess very precise internal temperature control, Bertholdt took this to a new level. Despite the Colossal Titan's high temperature, Bertholdt did not sustain heat damage inside his Titan.[25] The super-heated air released from its head area was enough to sear the flesh from Armin's muscles within moments and fuse his equipment straps to his legs.
Bertholdt's transformation in Shiganshina

Bertholdt's transformation in Shiganshina

  • Explosive Transformation: Although all Titans generate enormous amounts of heat and energy when transforming, Bertholdt took this to the next level. He could control the energy produced during his transformation to create various effects. For instance, when he attacked Trost, his transformation only caused a wind blast who knocked some cadets over the Wall.[5] However, during the retake of Shiganshina, Bertholdt released a similar amount of energy to a small nuclear device, creating a massive mushroom cloud of dust and rubble, and also ravaging part of the district.[2] 
  • Instant Form Dissipation: Although all holders of the power of the Titans produce their enormous Titans in moments, and Bertholdt was no exception, he was the only one shown able to disappear entirely in moments. It is unknown exactly how he did this, but it was a fast enough process to avoid attacks by Eren Jaeger, who had latched onto his Titan's nape and struck thin air when the body vanished in less than 10 seconds.[14]

Relationships

  • Reiner Braun - Reiner was his childhood friend, and partner in their mission against humanity. The two were rarely apart, and Bertholdt almost always followed along with whatever Reiner decided. However, he was shown to be greatly bothered by Reiner's growing attachment to the others and mental problems. Even so, he rarely spoke up or took any action to oppose Reiner. As he was being eaten by Armin in his Pure Titan form, he screamed out for Reiner and Annie to help him.
  • Annie Leonhart - Bertholdt and Annie were fellow warriors and childhood friends. As Annie left to join the Military Police, Bertholdt had his eyes set on her which led Reiner and Armin to believe he had feelings for her.[11] When Armin claimed that Annie was being tortured by the Military, Bertholdt became enraged and distracted, allowing Erwin to cut off the bonds binding him and Eren.[7] Reiner said that once their mission was complete, Bertholdt would have to tell Annie how he felt about her. As he was being eaten by Armin in his Pure Titan form, he screamed out for Reiner and Annie to help him.
  • Eren Jaeger - Though friendly, the two were not particularly close. Bertholdt expressed admiration for Eren's courage and the strength of his conviction to fight even after experiencing the horror of a Titan attack. After Bertholdt and Reiner revealed their true identities, Eren discarded the time they spent as friends in during training and viewed Bertholdt and Reiner as traitors, vowing to kill them slowly and painfully. Eren eventually made good on this vow, personally ripping Bertholdt out of the Colossal Titan and leaving him to be eaten by the Pure Titan form of Armin Arlelt.
  • Ymir - He was initially distrustful of her, warning Reiner that she once killed their friend and was dangerous. His fear of her continued to be a major aspect of their shaky alliance, though he seemed to have changed his opinion after she saved his life. Afterward, he expressed his gratitude to her and was visibly distressed by her willingness to further risk her life by returning to their hometown.
  • Armin Arlelt - He was hostile toward Armin when they faced off in Shiganshina, coldly expressing his desire to kill him and all of his friends. Despite this, Bertholdt showed a respect of Armin's intelligence, and attempted to put him out of his misery with a blast of steam not long after. Later, when Armin received the Titan injection, Bertholdt's final moments were daunting, as he was devoured by Armin in his Pure Titan form.
  • Jean Kirschtein and Conny Springer - Both alternately attempted to appeal to their friendship and confront him during the mission to rescue Eren. They mentioned several fond memories from their time as cadets, and Bertholdt was visibly distraught by their words. When he finally broke down, Bertholdt stated he genuinely thought of them both as his friends.

People killed

Indirectly

Failed attempts

Trivia

  • The official site reveals his nickname is "Bertl" (ベルトル Berutoru?).
  • His name is Old German in origin, meaning "Bright Strength."
  • Bertholdt is one of eight characters to have his own character song. The others being Mikasa, Levi, Jean, Eren, Erwin, Armin and Reiner. Bertholdt is the only character to share a song with another character. He shares his song with Reiner. Bertholdt's song is called Alternative Drive.

References

  1. Attack on Titan anime: Episode 57
  2. 2.00 2.01 2.02 2.03 2.04 2.05 2.06 2.07 2.08 2.09 2.10 2.11 2.12 2.13 2.14 2.15 2.16 2.17 2.18 Attack on Titan anime: Episode 52
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 Attack on Titan anime: Episode 26
  4. 4.0 4.1 Attack on Titan anime: Episode 50
  5. 5.0 5.1 5.2 5.3 5.4 Attack on Titan anime: Episode 4
  6. 6.0 6.1 6.2 6.3 6.4 Attack on Titan anime: Episode 34
  7. 7.0 7.1 7.2 7.3 7.4 7.5 Attack on Titan anime: Episode 36
  8. 8.0 8.1 8.2 Attack on Titan anime: Episode 54
  9. 9.0 9.1 Attack on Titan anime: Episode 55
  10. 10.0 10.1 10.2 10.3 10.4 10.5 Attack on Titan anime: Episode 31
  11. 11.0 11.1 11.2 11.3 11.4 Attack on Titan anime: Episode 35
  12. 12.0 12.1 12.2 Attack on Titan anime: Episode 1
  13. 13.0 13.1 13.2 Attack on Titan anime: Episode 2
  14. 14.0 14.1 14.2 14.3 14.4 14.5 14.6 14.7 14.8 Attack on Titan anime: Episode 5
  15. 15.0 15.1 15.2 Attack on Titan anime: Episode 8
  16. Attack on Titan anime: Episode 16
  17. Attack on Titan anime: Episode 17
  18. Attack on Titan anime: Episode 18
  19. Attack on Titan anime: Episode 20
  20. Attack on Titan anime: Episode 22
  21. Attack on Titan anime: Episode 27
  22. Attack on Titan anime: Episode 28
  23. 23.0 23.1 Attack on Titan anime: Episode 29
  24. Attack on Titan anime: Episode 30
  25. 25.0 25.1 25.2 25.3 25.4 Attack on Titan anime: Episode 32
  26. 26.0 26.1 Attack on Titan anime: Episode 33
  27. 27.0 27.1 27.2 Attack on Titan anime: Episode 37
  28. Attack on Titan anime: Episode 47
  29. Attack on Titan anime: Episode 49
  30. Attack on Titan anime: Episode 53
  31. Cite error: Invalid <ref> tag; no text was provided for refs named e4-5
  32. 32.0 32.1 Attack on Titan anime: Episode 6
  33. 33.0 33.1 Attack on Titan anime: Episode 7
  34. 34.0 34.1 34.2 34.3 34.4 Attack on Titan anime: Episode 13
  35. 35.0 35.1 Attack on Titan anime: Episode 11
  36. 36.0 36.1 Attack on Titan anime: Episode 12

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