This article will have major spoilers for Season 4 Episode 12, but the article itself is manga-spoiler-free. Please don’t add spoilers from the manga in the comments. Thanks. 🙂
Shortly after Armin and Mikasa met with Premier Zachary, and right after three people from the Military Police went in to speak with him, a bomb exploded, killing the three people inside and the Premier. Now, Premier Zachary’s death wasn’t a blow to Paradis; in fact, it will probably leave them better off. Zachary was a creepy man who had a torture chair that he used on his enemies. In a previous season, he told Erwin that he only participated in the monarchy revolution because he wanted to see the people in power suffer. He made it clear that he’s not in this for the betterment of humanity, but for the betterment of himself and his creepy pursuits.
It also became abundantly clear that he planned on taking Eren’s Founding Titan by force and giving it to someone else, probably someone loyal to him.
So with that said, his death is actually good.
Still, it leaves people wondering: WHO planted the bomb that killed him? We’re told that the assumption is that the bomb was planted on the chair when it was delivered by recruits to his room.
When Eren meets up with the Jaegerists who are loyal to him after he escapes from his cell, we’re given another clue about who it was that planted the bomb that killed Premier Zachary. Floch tells Eren that it was a “recruit in the military” who blew up Dhalis Zachary, someone still planted there.
This leaves us with some interesting questions and possibilities.
Mikasa and Armin talk about the three scout recruits they saw leaving HQ, and the assumption is quite clear that they think those scout recruits planted the bomb. Here’s a screenshot of those recruits.
We also see three Military Police members visiting the Premier right before the bomb goes off, leaving the question of a suicide bomber open.
It’s clear that the three who visited the Premier aren’t the same as the three Scout recruits who left, so that leaves us with six possible suspects.
Some people even think it might have been Mikasa, but I’m doubting this theory since she wanted to listen in at the door right before it exploded.
The most compelling theory to me, however, is that the person who planted the bomb was Armin — or, at the very least, Armin was in on the plan and knew it was going to happen.
Go back and watch the scene where Mikasa wants to listen in at the door. Armin desperately does all he can think of to stop her. I believe he knows that a bomb is about to go off, and he doesn’t want her near the door when it does. Maybe it was one of those three Military Police members they passed, and Armin knew it. Or maybe it was already planted on the chair, as suspected, and Armin knew that too. Either way, he was desperate to stop Mikasa from getting near that door before the explosion went off.
Watch it all again in the video below, and pay close attention to how Armin and Mikasa act:
Then later, when meeting with Pyxis and other military leaders, it’s Armin who proclaims that Pyxis is the only one who can lead now that the Premier is gone. He is the one who opens the door to Pyxis now being the leader, and then Pyxis promptly says that they will surrender to Eren, although they’ll also still protect Zeke and Historia.
This also points to Pyxis being a Jaegerist (which leaves open the possibility that Pyxis himself planted the bomb instead of Armin.) Surely both of these men are on the Jaegerist side. In fact, Pyxis himself advised Yelena earlier in the episode that the best lie contains some truth. So maybe the bomber is a member of the Scout Regiment, only it is Armin, not a random member who left HQ before the bomb went off.
What do you think?