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Bertolt Hoover
Anime | Manga

Bertolt close-up

Name Bertolt Hoover
Biological Information
Gender Male
Birthday December 30th[1]
Height 192 cm
Weight 81 kg
Affiliation Unknown
Former Affiliation Survey Corps Logo Survey Corps
104th Trainees Squad
Grad Rank 3rd
Species Human, Titan Shifter
Status Alive
First Appearance
Manga To You, 2000 Years From Now
Anime To You Two Thousand Years Later
Voice actor
Anime Tomohisa Hashizume (Japanese)
David Matranga (English)
Image Gallery
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Bertolt Hoover (ベルトルト・フーバー Berutoruto Fūbā?) is a graduate of the 104th Trainees Squad and former member of the Survey Corps. He ranked 3rd, and is described by others as a weak-willed and quiet person rarely seen without Reiner Braun, his close childhood friend.

Along with Reiner and Annie, he is a person that possesses the ability to transform into a Titan and serves an as-yet unrevealed group. He comes from a mysterious homeland outside the Walls, and was on a mission with Reiner to breach the Walls and infiltrate the military in search of something that Reiner refers to as the "Coordinate". As the Colossal Titan, he serves as a major antagonist—however, the revelation of his true identity illustrates the moral uncertainty of the series.

Appearance

Human Form

Bertolt is a rather tall, slender young man. He has short, dark hair and green eyes. In the anime adaptation, he has a slightly darker skin tone.

Titan Form

As the Colossal Titan, he possesses a very distinctive appearance and a number of unusual features. First of all, it is roughly 60 meters tall, making it around four times the height of any other Titan seen thus far in the series.

Bertolt's Colossal Titan form is one of the more heavily deformed Titans seen in the series - it appears to lack skin entirely and its jaw and facial structure seem to be heavily altered from the human form. It is also constantly releasing jets of steam from the surface of its body, in a manner that parallels Bertolt's frequent nervous sweating. Its feet are also quite different to those of a human and other Titans, as they are swollen and pillar-like in appearance. Its physiology is modeled after the male sex, but like all Titans, it lacks sexual organs. He appears to be the only one who doesn't leave the Titan body behind after returning to human form, seeming to evaporate in thin air.

Personality

Bertolt is a quiet, young man, identifying himself as someone with a weak will that follows popular opinion. Likewise, their instructor noted him to be a person with great potential, but an utter lack of initiative. He is further described by Eren as being taciturn, and tends to remain in the background unless necessary. By his own admission, he is something of a coward and is noted for his low self-esteem.

His withdrawn behavior initially lead to the impression of him as the least emotionally compromised of the three Titan agents. He showed little attachment or remorse over his actions, seeming to care only about his partner, Reiner. However, when confronted by his former comrades and questioned about their friendship, he reveals himself to be far more conflicted and guilt-ridden than it originally appeared. His claims of not having a choice add a further level of ambiguity to his character, leaving many of his actions in question.

He shows great devotion to both of his fellow agents, Reiner Braun and Annie Leonhart, easily driven to action or anger when he feels either is threatened. Initially, he shows himself to be wary of others (for good reason) and acts as a voice of reason to Reiner, cautioning him repeatedly about lowering his guard. His interactions with Ymir reveal that while his actions have caused considerable suffering, he is not a cruel person and is capable of showing genuine kindness towards others.

History

Bertolt comes from a mysterious location simply referred to as his hometown (or homeland), and began a mission to attack humanity in the year 845. Little is known about his life prior to undertaking his mission, other than the fact that Reiner and Marcel were his childhood friends. The exact nature of their group, and their mission is yet unknown. It is stated that their goal was to exterminate humanity, but their mission also involved locating and retrieving the Beast Titan and the mysterious ability called the Coordinate, possessed by Eren Yeager. At some point prior to attacking Wall Maria, he encountered Ymir's Titan form while traveling with Reiner and Marcel. Still in a mindless state, she attacked the three boys and nearly killed Reiner. Marcel ended up sacrificing his life to protect his friends, while Bertolt appears to have fled in terror and possibly abandoned the other two in the process.

Story

Fall of Shiganshina arc

Colossal Titan anime

The Colossal Titan appears

After one hundred years of peace and prosperity, Bertolt would first appear over Wall Maria as the Colossal Titan in the year 845, with ErenArmin and Mikasa as witnesses. His mere presence is enough to cause considerable panic amongst the population, as he is tall enough to see completely over the Wall that is supposed to keep all Titans out. Within moments of his appearance, he lifts his leg and breaches a large portion of the Wall, opening a hole large enough for other Titans to pass through.

The rubble from the impact further threatens the inhabitants of the Wall, remnants of it the size of boulders killing people and crushing houses, one of them including that of Kalura Yeager's. He then disappears after causing considerable structural damage to the Wall, but does not attempt to participate in the ensuing massacre itself. After these events, the Colossal Titan is not seen for five years.[2]

104th Trainees Squad arc

Bertolt

Bertolt shortly after enlisting

Eventually, Bertolt joined the military, with aspirations of joining the Military Police and living in the safety of the inner wall. As part of the 104th, he was considered to be one of the best in regards to 3D Maneuver Gear, enough so that Eren Yeager came to him for advice when he was dealing with faulty equipment.

After seeing Eren's determination and desire to join the Survey Corps, he considered himself a coward for wanting to get far away from them. However, Eren encouraged him, saying that after witnessing the attack on his village, no one would blame him for his decision. Eventually, he graduated in the top ten of his class coming in at third place, just under his friend Reiner.

Battle of Trost District arc

Bertolt appears in front of Eren

Bertolt reappears as the Colossal Titan in front of Eren

Bertolt reappears as the Colossal Titan five years later in 850, breaching Wall Rose so that his brethren can once again devour the humans inside. He is almost immediately attacked by Eren Yeager, but Bertolt first repels and blinds him with vapor from his high temperature body before vanishing completely from view. This attack prompts the Garrison to create the Colossal Titan contingency plan for Trost District.

When Armin, Mikasa and Connie made it to the headquarters, with the help of the rogue Titan, Armin devised a plan to get rid of the Titans in the supply room. Bertolt, part of the second group, came in from the ceiling and killed his target in one blow. The mission a success and everyone resupplied, he and the rest of the group leave the headquarters.

On the way out, he joins Mikasa and others on a rooftop as they watch the rogue Titan being eaten by other Titans. Reiner suggests helping it out, but ultimately it ends up not being necessary as the Titan fights his way out upon seeing the Titan that ate Thomas. After the rogue Titan kills it, the Titan collapses, and Bertolt is among the first people to learn of Eren's ability.

Post-Trost, Bertolt joins the Survey Corps with Mikasa, Reiner, Eren, Connie, Sasha, Krista, Armin, Ymir, Jean and a few others.

Clash of the Titans arc

In the aftermath of the failed mission to capture the Female Titan, Bertolt was among the recruits placed under observation at an old mansion and suspected of being a potential accomplice to Annie. He was shown to have occupied his time playing chess with Reiner, and quickly becomes involved in the operation to investigate the Titans that appeared within Wall Rose. Reiner requests his assistance on the Southern squad headed for Connie Springer's village, which is later discovered to be deserted.

That evening, the Southern squad met up with a squad including Ymir and Krista and the decision was made to take refuge for the night in Castle Utgard. At some point during the night, the castle came under attack by Titans and the recruits were forced to defend the interior from the smaller Titans that had invaded. After Reiner took off on his own to investigate, Bertolt offered a strange observation of his friend's "bad habit" of risking himself for others. When a Titan managed to break through a stairwell door, he came to Reiner's defense with a pitchfork and helped fight it off. The two reaffirmed their promise to survive and return to their home together.

After a second Titan managed to enter and injure Reiner, he helped Ymir toss it out a window. Afterwards, 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 had changed and was no longer a "warrior". However, he refused to elaborate further on the subject.

Eventually, their superiors were killed by the attacking Titans and the rookies were left defenseless. This drove Ymir to reveal herself to be a Titan, using her powers to protect the others. He, along with Reiner, were shocked to recognize her as the Titan that had killed their friend, Marcel, several years earlier.

Mikasa attacks Bertolt

Mikasa attacks Bertolt.

The group was eventually rescued by Hange Zoë's squad and evacuated to the wall, with the intention of regrouping with their main forces. Injured and distressed over their ordeal, Reiner broke down under the stress and confessed their identities to Eren while Bertolt watched in growing distress. Having been revealed as the Colossal Titan, Bertolt was quickly attacked and nearly killed by Mikasa.

Reinar and Bertolt awaken their titan forms

Bertolt and Reiner transform into their Titan forms.

Critically wounded and terrified, he transformed into a partial Titan form and began to attack the soldiers on the Wall while Reiner attempted to kidnap Eren. In the chaos, he managed to capture Ymir and a random soldier, swallowing them both whole. Afterwards, he countered an attack by Hange's squad through generating intense heat and steam, burning anyone that got too close. He remained in a skeleton-like state, burning to prevent any attack against him.

Bertolt falls on Eren and Reiner

Bertolt falls on Eren and Reiner.

Reiner then roared to signal his distress. In response, Bertolt toppled from the Wall and landed on top of Eren and Reiner, exploding upon impact. The resulting explosion wounds most of the Scouts, and allows them to successfully capture Eren and flee the scene. He emerges from his Titan form carrying Ymir and wearing the stolen gear of a soldier he devoured, suggesting further unknown abilities possessed by his group. Several hours later, he takes refuge with Reiner and their two captives in the Forest of Giant Trees. However, he is mostly silent during the following arguments and discussions, only speaking up when prompted by Ymir or Eren.

Bertolt responds to Reiner's strange behavior with great distress, and is shown to have known about it long before anyone else. He is able to bring his friend back to reality by informing him that he is not a soldier, but rather that they are both "warriors". Ymir guesses this to have been the cause of previous tensions between them that she had observed.

Eren later confronts him about his role in the death of Kalura Yeager, demanding to know what he thought when he learned about the suffering he'd caused. He responds with a vague comment about having felt sorry for him, horrifying Eren and leading him to scream at them both. While Reiner and Eren continue to argue further, he remains silent and observes the efforts to sway Ymir over to their side.[3]

Though she agrees to work with them, Bertolt remains unconvinced and warns Reiner that she cannot be trusted. He brings up the death of their friend, who was devoured by Ymir, though Reiner reassures them that she can be trusted since her only consideration is Krista's safety. Bertolt worries he may be slipping into his delusions again, but is reminded that Krista has value to them since she's a member of the Reiss family and may be able to provide them with important clues. They discuss their mission to find the "coordinate", which may or may not be Eren, and Bertolt expresses his eagerness to go home and never return to the human lands. Reiner responds by teasing him, demanding that he confess his feelings to Annie once they make it home. Bertolt attempts to protest, but Reiner claims his tendency to stare at her gave him away.

The pair notice a signal flare and realize the rescue team has already found them, and prepare to flee. While Reiner subdues Eren, Bertolt confronts Ymir over the death of his friend. She states she has no memory of having done it, but apologizes to him and asks if he hates her. He admits he isn't certain, but he can't hold her responsible since none of them wanted to devour humans. He asks how long she wandered as a mindless Titan, and implies that he and Reiner may have also spent some time trapped in their Titan forms in the past.

As the group flees, Ymir notices the signal flares and becomes agitated. She demands that they kidnap Krista, and attacks Bertolt when they refuse. They are forced to land in the trees, and she further physically intimidates and threatens Bertolt until they relent. Once Ymir returns from kidnapping Krista, he straps an unconscious Eren to his back and both cling to the Armored Titan's back as he runs from the pursuing troops.[4]

Realizing how close the troops have already gotten, he shouts at Ymir about having delayed them so much. He demands to know what they've been doing all this for, and whether she intends to abandon Krista inside the Walls to save herself. His words get through to Ymir, and watches the exchange between the two women intently.

A short time later, Mikasa manages to get onto the Armored Titan's back and attacks first Ymir (and Krista) before turning on Bertolt. To escape, he slips down onto the front of Reiner's neck and shouts for him to protect them. In response, Reiner cups his hands around his neck and encloses Bertolt and Eren safely against his neck. Eren, now awake, begins to struggle and ignores all efforts to calm him down. The other members of the 104th Trainees Squad climb onto the Armored Titan's shoulders and begin to shout at Bertolt in his hiding place.

He initially attempts to ignore them, as Jean Kirstein and Connie Springer alternately attempt to coax him out and confront him over his betrayal. At last, he breaks into tears and yells at them that he never wanted to kill anyone. He confesses to having truly thought of the 104th as his friends, stating that their time together was enjoyable. Even so, he refuses to surrender and return Eren, stating that "someone has to do it".[5]

Before he can elaborate any further, Hannes screams a warning to the group as Erwin Smith leads a horde of Titans directly towards them. This forces them to retreat for a time, while Reiner attempts to charge through the oncoming horde in his Titan form. It ultimately proves hopeless, and the Armored Titan is quickly overwhelmed by the large group and forced to begin using his hands to fight. No longer protected by his partner, Bertolt is forced to defend himself when the soldiers return in force and attack him. Beginning to panic, he shouts to Reiner that they have to bring Eren back to their home.

Erwin attacks Bertolt

Erwin releases Eren from Bertolt.

He narrowly escapes another attack by Mikasa, and is confronted by Armin, who reveals that Annie has been captured. Taunting Bertolt, he asks if they intend to abandon their comrade and claims that Annie is currently being tortured by the military. This drives Bertolt into a rage, and distracts him long enough for a wounded Erwin to launch a surprise attack and free Eren. Wounded, Bertolt can only watch in shock as the soldiers begin their retreat.[6]

He remains perched on the Armored Titan's shoulder as it begins to hurl Titans at the fleeing soldiers, slowly healing his injuries. When Eren's power as the Coordinate activates, he senses it and reacts with shock. The partners begin to pursue Eren once freed from the Titan horde attacking them, but this freedom is short-lived. Taking advantage of his new-found power, Eren screams at them to stay away and threatens to kill them. Both react with shock and horror, sensing Eren's power and realizing that it has directed the horde at them once again. Reiner initially attempts to protect him from attackers, but they are quickly overwhelmed and he is forced to fight on his own.

Ymir, Bertolt and Reiner vs Titans

Bertolt, Reiner and Ymir fighting together against the Titans.

His screams draw Ymir's attention, causing her to hesitate in fleeing with the soldiers. Just as a Titan is about to kill him, Ymir appears and rescues him. The three Titan Shifters begin to fight together, while the human soldiers retreat back to the Walls. The narration notes they did not pursue, leaving his fate in the aftermath of the battle unknown.[7] Eren later expresses the desire to catch him and make him pay for his crimes, suggesting that he believes they survived.[8]

This is confirmed in an epilogue, which reveals that he survived and fled back to the ruins of Shiganshina District. The group, exhausted from their two-day ordeal, rest atop Wall Maria while attempting to make sense of things. He questions Ymir about her decision to save his life, and is shocked that her actions were motivated by gratitude for having been saved from her "eternal nightmare". Knowing that she faces an uncertain future when they return with her to their homeland, Bertolt struggles to hold back his tears while thanking her.[9]

Abilities

Bertolt graduated at 3rd position among the trainees, and was noted as the best user of the 3D Maneuver Gear among them. Due to his high level position, he is also likely to possess other military and combat skills.

Bertolt Hoover's Statistics[10]:

Combat
9/10
Initiative
4/10
Wits
6/10
Teamwork
9/10
Aggressiveness
2/10



Titan Shifting

Colossal Titan

The Colossal Titan

Bertolt is able to transform into a 60 meter Titan referred to as the Colossal Titan (超大型巨人 Chō ōgata Kyojin) and is the largest Titan shown in the series so far. In this form, Bertolt is able to look over the Walls that protect the last remnants of mankind. He is also able to retain his intelligence when he transforms as shown when he targets the network of cannons that line the top part of Wall Maria 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 3D Maneuver Gear to move around him. Like Eren, Bertolt is able to induce partial transformation as he is able to manifest the upper portion of his Titan form on top of Wall Rose to fight against the Survey Corp. His form is also noteworthy for being able to form and dissolve almost instantly, as opposed to most Titans. During the attack on Wall Rose, he was able to dissolve his Titan form literally within seconds, vanishing before Eren could react. This may be related to his ability to generate incredible heat, as he generates a massive cloud of steam before vanishing.

  • Regeneration: Bertolt, like all other Titan Shifters and Titans, has the power to automatically regenerate any wounds sustained and even entire parts of body that were lost. This power also extends to his human form as shown with the fight against Mikasa on top of Wall Rose with Bertolt losing part of his arm and suffering a critical slash to his neck. Later on, in the Forest of Giant Trees, Bertolt is seen with his arm regenerated, and his neck fully healed.
Bertolt steam release

The Colossal Titan releasing hot steam.

  • 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, they are the only ones who are capable of damaging and tearing down the gates of Walls. With a single strike of his Titan foot, Bertolt was able to breach the south gate of Wall Maria easily, damaging nearby buildings in the Shiganshina District. 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. Bertolt’s strikes had enough force to similarly damage the upper portion of Wall Rose and create a shockwave able to push back people, wounding them in the process.
  • Steam Generation: Since Bertolt’s Titan form is too slow to catch more agile opponents with the 3D Maneuver Gear, he possesses a powerful defense mechanism that involves him releasing large amounts of extremely hot and pressurized steam from his body. The steam has enough force to deflect any cables shot from the 3DMG and burn or repel close-range fighters. It is shown that Bertolt can sustain the effort of producing large quantities of steam for a timed duration as seen in the fight on the top of Wall Rose.
Colossal Titan's Statistics[10]:

Power
11/10
Speed
3/10
Size
11/10
Elusiveness
10/10
Threat
10/10


Relationships

  • Reiner Braun - Reiner is his childhood friend, and partner in their mission against humanity. The two are rarely apart, and Bertolt almost always follows along with whatever he decides. However, he's shown to be greatly bothered by Reiner's growing attachment to the others and mental problems. Even so, he rarely speaks up or takes any action to oppose Reiner.
  • Annie Leonhart - Reiner suggests that Bertolt has a crush on her, noting his tendency to always stare at her. In response, he blushes and offers a weak protest. When Armin claims that she is being tortured by the military, he flies into a rage and declares that he will kill everyone.
  • Ymir - He is initially distrustful of her, warning Reiner that she once killed their friend and is extremely dangerous. His fear of her continues to be a major aspect of their shaky alliance, though he seems to have changed his opinion after she saved his life. Afterwards, he expresses his gratitude to her and is visibly distressed by her willingness to further risk her life by returning to the Titan Shifters' homeland.
  • Eren Yeager - Though friendly, the two were not particularly close in comparison to Eren and Reiner's friendship. Bertolt expresses admiration for Eren's courage and the strength of his conviction to fight even after experiencing the horror of a Titan attack. After being revealed as the Colossal Titan, he behaves coldly towards Eren while the other becomes hostile towards him, calling him a "lackey".
  • Armin Arlert - Little interaction between the two has been shown, though his relationship chart in the official guidebook shows that Bertolt considers Armin a close friend. This, of course, sours once Bertolt's true identity is revealed and he threatens to kill Armin when the other lies and claims Annie is being tortured.
  • Jean Kirstein and Connie Springer - Both alternately attempt to appeal to their friendship and confront him during the mission to rescue Eren. They mention several fond memories from their time as trainees, and Bertolt is visibly distraught by their words. When he finally breaks down, Bertolt states he genuinely thought of them both as his friends.

Trivia

  • Bertholdt-Chara Design

    Bertolt's character design for the anime

    In Episode 2 of the anime, a young Reiner and Bertolt are in the crowd when the mission to reclaim Wall Maria is announced. This is an anime-only cameo.
  • The official site reveals his nickname is "Bertl".
  • He is the only Titan Shifter so far to be shown willingly eating a human, as he did so in order to obtain the victim's Three Dimensional Maneuver Gear. He is also thus far the only Shifter not shown transforming multiple times in a single day, leaving it unknown whether or not he's capable of doing so.
  • Jean mentions the 104th Trainees Squad made a game of using Bertolt's odd sleeping positions to predict the weather.
  • His name is Old German in origin, meaning "Bright Strength".
  • The Colossal Titan was featured in a Subaru Commercial advertising the live-action Attack on Titan movie.[11]
  • In the game Age of Gunslingers Online, a special Titan Mode was made as a tribute to the series. The final boss is heavily based upon the Colossal Titan, and is fought atop a massive structure. A trailer of this mode can be viewed here.

Quotes

References

  1. Shingeki no Kyojin Guidebook: OUTSIDE
  2. Attack on Titan Manga: Chapter 1.
  3. Attack on Titan Manga: Chapter 46.
  4. Attack on Titan Manga: Chapter 47.
  5. Attack on Titan Manga: Chapter 48.
  6. Attack on Titan Manga: Chapter 49.
  7. Attack on Titan Manga: Chapter 50.
  8. Attack on Titan Manga: Chapter 51, Page 16
  9. Attack on Titan Manga: Chapter 50.5
  10. 10.0 10.1 Attack on Titan Guidebook: INSIDE
  11. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NQkgmHEA5_E


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