Yumihisu vs. Erehisu; A formal, hate-free analysis
Aren’t ship wars fun? We had our biggest one when the series first started and I’m sure you already know which one I’m talking about if you’ve been around that long. Yep, Ereri vs. Eremika. It’s a rivalry that still plagues the fandom to this day, however, it’s simmered down considerably over the years. Unfortunately when one ship war starts to calm down, another takes its place and this time in the form of who does Historia Reiss truly belong with. To answer that, I’m gonna talk about the two relationships separately and then try to explain why I believe both sides feel the way they do. Beware of spoilers.
Okay, first up is Yumihisu. There is honestly so much that goes on between these two that if I were to list them all, this post would be way too long; Not to mention the deeper into their relationship we get, the more people’s interpretations start to differ, so I’m keeping it simple.
We got our first glimpse of Historia, formerly known as Krista, in chapter 3. She had just entered the military after having been sent there by her father’s suggestion. Standing close by is another girl we find out is named Ymir, who decided to follow Krista into the military after overhearing her story in a church. Ymir quickly falls for Krista after meeting her and makes keeping her safe and happy her number one priority. Because Ymir can see so much of her old self in Krista, she is able to tell early on that she is not displaying her true personality, but is rather taking on a role that was forced onto her. As a caring person by heart, Ymir was willing to do whatever it took to make sure that the girl she loved would not give in to her fate, but rather choose her own and live proudly by it.
These five simple words make all the difference in the world for Historia’s character and are what ultimately stop her from conceding to her father’s will and injecting herself to eat Eren. Even with Ymir gone, she will always play a major role in Historia’s life.
Now let’s talk about Eren and Historia’s relationship. It wasn’t until chapter 51 that the two of them talk to each other face to face for the first time.
These were the very first words Historia said to Eren. The wound of being left behind yet again is still fresh in her heart and she is ready to recruit Eren to help bring Ymir back. Shortly after realizing there was no point, Historia goes into a state of depression and passiveness. Eren was pleased to realize that Krista Lenz was never real and told Historia that he liked her true self much better. These words meant a lot to Historia and from that point on she had found a friend in Eren. Their friendship grew stronger as the story progressed, and now they share a deep bond of trust and understanding.
Okay here’s the part where I talk about this shipping conflict. I’m starting with the Yumihisu fan base and why they feel the way they do. Being a Yumihisu fan myself, this will be easy. Again, I’m keeping this as hate-free as possible. Ymir and Historia’s relationship in the manga was a joy for fans in the LGBT community. Even after Ymir left, many of us held on to hope that the couple would eventually reunite. All we could do was wait and hope, and we finally got excited again when we first heard about Ymir’s letter. A few chapters later we got to see what she wrote; she claimed that she would be dead by the time Historia got her letter, but we still weren’t quite buying it. The thought of her leaving Historia behind like that just because she felt bad about eating some guy she didn’t even know didn’t make the least bit of sense, yet here we are. In chapter 93 we are hit, completely out of nowhere, with a two-panel flashback of Ymir about to be eaten. No dialogue, no further explanation, just her sad, defeated face. We just wanted Ymir back and who do we get instead? Some new guy with a name that would make me wanna kill my parents if they gave it to me. Now I realize that some people have come to love Porco and that’s fine. I’m not going to interfere with their fun in any way, this is just my own opinion. Personally, I don’t find him nearly as interesting as Ymir, so deep down I neither love nor hate him; I simply don’t care. Ymir’s death dealt a huge blow to Yumihusu fans; some people stopped making content because we have nothing new to work with anymore, and some dropped the series all together. Meanwhile, Stephen Universe and Adventure Time fans are thriving with their own victory, to which I offer my sincerest congratulations:
Two lesbian couples get a happy ending, courtesy of Rebecca Sugar. This is literally all we wanted for Ymir and Historia, and after all these years of patiently waiting what do we get?
We get this cheap off-screen death, and just when we think it can’t get any worse, we get this:
*slowly bangs head on table*
So. I learned quite an interesting statistic from all of this. Apparently any time there is a gay couple in stories like this, it is annoyingly common for one of them to get killed off and then the other character ends up with someone of the opposite gender. This is part of the reason why we don’t like Historia being paired with male characters, especially at a time like this. It feels very in your face and disheartening. I mean come on, not everything has to be romantic. There is beauty in friendship too, and what Eren and Historia have is a great example of that. While that is no reason to pick fights with other erehisu shippers who are genuinely reasonable people, this is just my way of explaining why we feel the way we do in the hopes that we can understand each other better.
Finally, erehisu. Admittedly I don’t have as much to say about their situation because I’m still kind of in the dark. I’ve read some posts though, and some of them believe that just because Historia loved Ymir first doesn’t mean she can’t move on and be happy with someone else. Also, some of them are called homophobic for shipping what they do, which I agree does stretch it a bit too far. I also agree that yes, it’s okay for Historia to move on, however, I don’t see that as a big possibility right now due to Isayama’s statement that he doesn’t want to incorporate romance into the story very much. So with that being said, who does Historia truly belong with? That decision is ultimately up to Historia herself.
Damn this was a long post, but I hope my take on this has been helpful because I’m gonna mostly stay out of this. I’m just here to have fun, and I hope the rest of you are still having fun too. Thanks for reading! *and please be nice to each other*