Attack on Titan Season 4 Part 2, Episode 4 Explained: “Memories of the Future”

By Samona Punjabi / January 31, 2022

If you haven't watched the latest episode of Attack on Titan: The Final Season, everything below is a MAJOR SPOILER.

*no manga spoilers, though*

Attack on Titan's latest episode revealed some shocking and confusing information. The previous episode ended with Eren betraying his older brother Zeke, telling him he never planned to go along with his "euthanasia" plan. Zeke then revealed that he was only testing Eren's loyalty to the plan and didn't need his help anyway since he was in control of the coordinate.

However, Zeke also believed his father, Grisha Yeager, to be the one responsible for Eren's betrayal. By the end of the previous episode, titled "Two Brothers," Zeke promised to never abandon Eren, despite his betrayal. Zeke also told Eren that he was the result of their father's brainwashing and that they would "save the world," side by side.

However, the events of the latest episode, titled "Memories of the Future," reveal that Eren has been playing Zeke all along. While we don't know exactly how Eren is doing all of this, the episode gave us some hints. Here's what we understand from Attack on Titan Season 4 Part 2 Episode 4.

An Explanation For The Events of Attack on Titan Season 4, Episode 20 "Memories of the Future"

The episode begins with Zeke and Eren Yeager looking at a baby Eren and the younger version of their father, Grisha. The two travel through their father Grisha's memories as Zeke attempts to show Eren that Grisha only cared about him as a tool, presumably in an attempt to undo his father's "brainwashing." Here's what happens.

A Terrible Father?

Through Grisha's memories, the first thing the two brothers see is their father taking care of a crying baby Eren. Zeke tells Eren that their father doesn't even look like he cares about the family that he left behind in Marley, once again in an attempt to undo his father's "brainwashing." Zeke then takes Eren through Grisha's memories, little by little, to show him what their father was really like.

First, Zeke shows Eren how Grisha used his profession as a doctor to get close to people in power to track down the king and the Founding Titan. He emphasizes the fact that Grisha did so, knowing that it would put his family at risk, all in the name of "restoring Eldia." Going further in Grisha's memories, they watch him conducting his investigation into the Founding Titan.

The two watch Grisha finding the door to the underground chapel near the Reiss family estate. However, the two are shocked to learn that Grisha found the chapel when Eren was still a baby since he did not take the Founding Titan until the fall of Wall Maria. Grisha opens the door to the chapel but immediately closes it in fear. He then returns home and hugs Eren, stunning Zeke.


The episode until now is pretty straightforward. Zeke wants to prove to Eren that their father was terrible and that Eren must not follow in his footsteps. He tries to tell Eren that their father never loved them more than his dream of restoring Eldia. However, upon finding out that Grisha found the location of the Founding Titan so early on, Zeke is surprised.

The primary reason behind Zeke and Eren's shock is the motivation behind Grisha's actions. Since Zeke always believed Grisha to be a terrible father, he is surprised to see that his father loved Eren enough to delay obtaining the Founding Titan.

A Vision from the Future

Zeke and Eren continue to watch Grisha in the Yeager family basement, who seems to have fallen asleep at his desk. While Zeke admits that Grisha might have learned from his past mistakes with his first family, he insists that Eren still does exactly what Grisha wanted him to. Still asleep on his desk, Grisha mumbles an apology to Zeke and opens his eyes.

Grisha stands up and looks directly at Zeke, who is shocked to see his father noticing him since they only observe memories from the past. Grisha then asks him if he's really Zeke; however, he slumps back into the chair, telling himself that the bearded man he sees cannot be his son and that it's probably a dream.

Zeke and Eren move further into Grisha's memories and get to when Eren is nine years old. Zeke admits that Eren does not appear to have been brainwashed by Grisha. Zeke then asks Eren why he betrayed him, despite knowing nothing. The two then reach the memory where Grisha discovers that Eren rescued Mikasa Ackerman by killing her kidnappers.

While Grisha admonishes a young Eren for acting rashly, an older Eren tells Zeke that he has always been this way. Eren also tells Zeke that they are not the same and that Zeke is just somebody who cannot move past their dead father's dreams. As they move along into another memory, Zeke tells Eren that he can carry on his plan anytime he wants, but he wants to save his brother before he can save the world.

Once again, Zeke stands behind Grisha in the basement, watching him write the message that will leave behind for Eren about humanity still existing beyond the walls. After Grisha locks everything inside the drawer, he lifts his key and stares directly at Eren, standing in front of him.

Moving on, we reach a previously shown memory where Mikasa tells Eren's family about his desire to join the Scout Regiment. While Carla seems to be against it, Grisha understands his desire. Before leaving, Grisha tells Eren that he will show him the secret in the basement that he has been keeping. However, as Grisha speaks, he doesn't seem to be looking at the younger Eren but at the one from the present day.


The only explanation for these events is that since Grisha and Eren Yeager inherited the "Attack Titan," they now have shared memories. This became evident at the end of Season 3 when Eren Kruger told Grisha that he must "protect Mikasa and Armin" before they were born. This was obviously because Eren Kruger was looking into Eren Yeager's memories from the future at the time.

This means that because of the Attack Titan's shared memories, Grisha has seen the future and knows that Eren returns to these memories in the past through the Paths at some point. It isn't apparent, but we believe it will make sense soon.

Obtaining the Founder

Moving further into Grisha's memories, we finally reach the day Wall Maria falls, and he returns to the underground chapel where the Reiss family is gathered. Grisha tells them that he has come from outside the walls and begs the current Founder to stop the Titans from attacking before his family and everyone in Shigansina are eaten. However, Freida Reiss, still trapped by the ideals of the first king, states that the Subjects of Ymir cannot escape their sins.

Freida then states that to save the world, the Subjects of Ymir must accept their destruction. While Zeke agrees, he remembers that Eren said he was disgusted by this memory and turns to ask if that was a lie, only to be shocked by the intensity on Eren's face. Grisha continues to beg Freida to help them and argues that the people she is leaving to die do not know anything about the sins of their ancestors because the king erased their memories. However, Freida still disagrees and says that Eldians must accept the world's hatred and die.

Grisha then looks over to his right shoulder, where Eren is fuming with rage. Freida then tells Grisha that even if he took the Founding Titan from her, he could not use it since he doesn't have royal blood. However, Grisha knows this and says that he possesses the Attack Titan, who can catch glimpses into the memories of its future inheritors and know the future through them. Grisha tells a shocked Freida that he will eat the Founding Titan and end the royal bloodline and that the future has already been decided.

While Grisha prepares to stab himself and attack, the Reiss family members run for their lives. Seeing the panicking children, Grisha cannot do what it takes to obtain the founder. This particularly shocks Zeke since this was not what happened, and the past cannot change. However, Eren, still looking at Grisha with rage, tells him to stand up and fight. He tells Grisha that he came to the walls to avenge his sister, wife, and comrades' deaths.

Eren tells Grisha that he is the one that started this story, and Grisha picks up the scalpel to stab himself. The Reiss family is killed, and Eren's vision when he kissed Queen Historia Reiss' hand comes full circle.


One of the most horrifying revelations of the show was this particular scene. It seems that Eren can observe memories and manipulate events in the past because of the Founder's powers. We believe that Eren already knows how the events took place in the past because he has already seen everything through his father's shared memories. After watching this scene, we lost any hope for Eren's redemption.

However, now that he is in the Paths, he has gained the power to manipulate history. This means that Eren manipulated Grisha to kill the Reiss family and obtain the Founding Titan so they could be where they are right now. Of course, we could be wrong, but this seems like the only explanation right now.

"Only Eren will get what he wants"

Once Grisha flees the chapel, Zeke is horrified to learn that Eren manipulated their father through their shared memories. An appalled Grisha exits his Titan and staggers away, carrying a "Titan spinal fluid" syringe with him. He then falls to his knees and shouts that he has done exactly as Eren wanted and killed everyone in the Reiss family except Rod Reiss. Grisha then asks Eren if he is happy and will really save Eldia.

Grisha then looks at the ground and wonders if Zeke is still there. As he looks up, he sees Zeke standing before him and apologizes for being an awful father. Grisha tells Zeke that he has seen the future, which is terrible. He then tells Zeke that whatever he hopes will not come and that only Eren will get what he wants.

Grisha also tells Zeke that he loves and wishes they had more time together, after which Zeke also tears up and calls him "father." However, Grisha also tasks Zeke with a shocking mission. He tells Zeke that he must stop Eren. Zeke then sees Eren standing behind Grisha, staring intensely at him.

Suddenly, Zeke is knocked off his feet, and the two are back in the Paths. Eren, still chained, looks calmly down at Zeke.


Well, that was something. From what we've seen so far, it seems that Eren has gained control of the Founding Titan's powers. It also seems like Grisha Yeager was right and that things will not go the way Zeke intends them to. From everything that Grisha said after the chapel incident, it looks like Eren has been manipulating his actions all along.

We wouldn't be surprised to find out that Eren forced his father to pass on the Attack Titan to him, along with the key to the basement, all so that they could get where they are right now. It seems impossible, but keep in mind that Eren is right now in "The Paths," where time is both instant and infinite. This means that right from writing about humanity's existence beyond the walls to stealing the founder was all Eren's plan.

Eren has also been playing Zeke because he obviously knew that his father didn't want to kill the Reiss family. While we know Eren was lying to Zeke about going along with the plan, we also believe that he wasn't lying about being disgusted by his father after his memories from the night of the Reiss family incident.

We believe that Eren WAS disgusted because his father didn't have what it took to complete his mission. This is why we believe that Eren has completely lost his way and cannot be redeemed any more. Seeing his livid glares towards Grisha for not having the gall to murder innocent children was truly shocking.

Read Next: Attack on Titan Season 4 Part 2 Episode 5: Release Date, Time, English Dub, and Where to Watch

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