Attack on Titan's third season premiere is one of the biggest premieres of the Summer, and the anime year in general, for many fans, and the first episode does live up to these expectations pretty well.
Most importantly, the premiere does one important thing and effectively introduces the mysterious, and very deadly, Kenny the Ripper.
WARNING: Major spoilers for the Attack on Titan season three premiere below!
Fans first got a glimpse of Kenny in the trailer for the third season, but his actual introduction to the series is a fantastic way to bring in the big bad of Season 3. Levi decides to take the fight to the Trost District, and soon after "Eren" and "Historia" (Armin and Jean in disguise) are kidnapped. After following the kidnappers, Levi is suddenly cautious.
He asks Nifa if she's heard about "Kenny The Ripper," she responds with the fact that he's well known because he's killed at least 100 military police officers. After Levi admitted her grew up with Levi and says Kenny would attack from behind, the two are suddenly ambushed as Nifa is shot in the head. Before Levi can react, Abel is gunned down and his body drops in front of a poor mother and child.
Just then, a man with a different kind of maneuver gear appears as he has two guns rather than blades. He reloads them a bit, and mentions how grown up Levi's become. After being surrounded by a huge squad with the same gun-toting maneuver gear, Levi prepares for battle and shouts "Kenny!" as the episode comes to a close.
This is a suitably big introduction for the major foil of the third season. Unlike the Titans, Kenny is a sadistic human being with intelligence and can't just be cut in the back of the neck like some Titan. He's going to take a lot more to overcome, and it's sure going to be tough waiting to see just how he does it.
Attack on Titan is officially scheduled to premiere its third season on July 22 on NHK in Japan. During its panel at Anime Expo 2018, the series confirmed that the simuldub will begin in August along with further confirmation of its upcoming simulcast on Crunchyroll.
The first episode of the season premiered during the panel to great response as well. Here's what Comicbook.com's Megan Peters had to say about the first episode in her review:
"If you can get through the premiere's slow opening, Attack on Titan rewards fans with plenty of action at the end thanks to Captain Levi. Season Three has a lead-in worthy of the Survey Scouts, but its second episode has some serious responsibility to follow through on the action promised by the premiere's ringing cliffhanger."
For those unfamiliar with Attack on Titan, the series was originally created by Hajime Isayama. Starting its run in Kondansha's Bessatsu Shonen Magazine in 2009, the series has been collected into 23 volumes as of 2017. It's set in a world where the last remnants of humanity live within a walled city in order to escape the danger of the Titans, a race of giants monsters that eats humans. Eren Yeager joins the military with his two childhood friends Mikasa and Armin after the Titans break through the wall and attack his hometown.