This article is about the anime OVA episode. For the manga chapter, see Ilse's Notebook.
|Did it...speak? The Titan spoke.|
|— Ilse Langnar encounters an Abnormal|
Ilse's Notebook: Record of a Fallen Soldier (イルゼの手帳 ―ある調査兵団員の手記― Iruze no Techō -Aru Chōsa Heidan'in no Shuki-?, also known simply as Ilse's Notebook) is the first OVA, Episode 3.5, of the Attack on Titan anime. It was produced by Wit Studio and Production I.G.
During the 49th Exterior Scouting Mission, Section Commander Hange Zoë and Captain Levi encounter an Abnormal Titan which leads them to the site of Ilse Langnar's death. Ilse's notebook reveals that one year ago, she had encountered that same Titan which spoke to her, but it killed her afterward when she attempted to question it. The discovery convinces Commander Erwin Smith to approve resuming attempts at capturing Titans.
In the year 850, the Scout Regiment forces are readying themselves to go outside the Walls once again on the 49th Exterior Scouting Mission. Hange Zoë tries to speak to Captain Levi, but before she can say anything, Levi rejects her thought. After Miche Zacharius also refuses, the gate opens and the soldiers head out, starting the mission, much to Hange's enthusiasm. Later, while the soldiers are taking a break, Hange argues with Commander Erwin who refuses to approve of the Titan capture operation as setting up a base is their priority. Hange then leaves the tent and angrily confronts Oruo Bozad after he annoys her, using Levi as an example of how knowing one's opponent is important to defeating them.
On the look out, Miche notices a Titan in the nearby forest. While all other soldiers are to be on guard, Hange rides a horse to the Titan's direction, with Levi being ordered by Erwin to follow her. Eventually, she reaches the Titan and while attempting to talk to it, the chase begins. She leads it out of the forest. However, the Titan suddenly stops chasing Hange and heads back to the forest. Hange goes after it, with Levi and his squad following them. Eventually, the Titan reaches a certain tree and begins bumping its head into it. Hange, wondering what is going on, tries to approach the Titan, however, it attacks her, with the Section Commander barely dodging.
Suddenly, Oruo appears, attaching the hook of his ODM gear onto the Titan's neck in an attempt to kill it. Hange yells at him to wait. The moment of hesitation causes Oruo to be caught by the Titan. Levi cuts off the Titan's arm to free Oruo and then kills the Titan. Enraged, he then confronts Hange for endangering other soldiers. At that moment, Petra notices a corpse inside the tree that the Titan approached. After learning that the soldier is Ilse Langnar, who died a year ago during the Scout Regiment's 34th Exterior Scouting Mission, Levi finds a notebook lying on the ground nearby.
During this scouting mission, Ilse is seen running through Wall Rose's territory, noting down everything that is happening around her. Her squad has been killed by Titans and her gear is broken, but in spite of that, she continues advancing in hopes of reaching home without encountering Titans. However, while running through a forest, noting down the events, she suddenly encounters a Titan. She continues writing as the Titan is not attacking. Thinking it is over, she writes down her last regrets, but suddenly, the Titan speaks a few words, calling Ilse a "Subject of Ymir". Much to Ilse's shock, it bows down, while saying "Lady Ymir...Well met,", which Ilse writes down.
She then tries to ask questions, without getting any response. Enraged, Ilse yells at the Titan for its species eating humans without any reasons, which causes the Titan to tear the skin off its face, much to Ilse's horror, she tries to escape to no avail, as the Titan runs after and catches her. It clamps down on her head and Ilse hurriedly writes down any information she can before her demise. The Titan then crushes her head between its teeth and bites it off. After killing Ilse, it stores her corpse within a tree.
Hange, after reading the notebook, begins writing a document of proposal to Erwin for the resuming of the Titan capturing operations within the Scout Regiment. Using the diary as a base of her arguments, Hange wants to continue what Ilse has started. She then visits the Langnar family and shows them the notebook.
During this time Levi, Oruo, and Petra are seen shopping. Sometime later Hange is approached by Oruo, who wants to apologize; however, Hange apologizes instead. She, Oruo, Levi, and Petra then walk through the town, with Hange expressing her joy for being given a permission by Erwin to continue her research. Eight days later, Hange, along with the help of Levi's Special Operations Squad was able to successfully capture a Titan for the first time since the fall of Wall Maria. A new capture method proposed by Hange was used in the operation, and not a single casualty was taken.
Currently Publicly Available Information
Little remains in recorded history about the causes behind the Titans' appearance, making the subject a near-total mystery.
The Titans act for one reason: to eat humans. However, the data suggests that they do this not to feed, but to slaughter.
Characters in order of appearance
- In the OVA, the events of the scouting mission in which Ilse Langnar's body is found are set in the year 850. However, in the Attack on Titan Guidebook, these events are instead placed a year earlier in the year 849.