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Isabel Magnolia

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Isabel Magnolia (イザベル・マグノリア Izaberu Magunoria?) is a character from Attack on Titan: No Regrets, and was one of Levi Ackerman's companions prior to and after their joining the Survey Corps, the other being Furlan Church. She has also made a brief appearance in the main manga.[2]

Appearance

Isabel was a young woman with green eyes and red-brown hair which she kept in two pigtails. She had longer hair and pigtails until one of the pigtails was cut off by others who lived in the Underground City.[3] Prior to joining the Survey Corps, her typical attire consisted of a simple buttoned tunic with a vest and knee-high boots. She also wore a small necklace with a ring tied to it, even when wearing her uniform. In the anime OVAs, she is portrayed wearing a large orange button up shirt with the sleeves rolled up, brown tights, and small tan boots with no necklace.

Personality

Isabel was shown to be energetic, confident in her abilities, and the most cheerful of her companions. She was quite headstrong, shown when she continued to struggle and insult the Survey Corps after she was initially captured.[4] Isabel was also quite prideful, as she once stubbornly refused to tell Levi and Furlan the reasons she came back home beaten with one of her pigtails chopped off.

Isabel apparently did not know how to do math, as she stated that it was not as important as feeding yourself in the underground.[5] She valued Levi as a brother figure and became emotional if he berated her. In the anime, he sometimes calls her an idiot, and she is offended each time.

Isabel proved to be a good horseback rider and was able to switch from using her Vertical Maneuvering Equipment to riding a horse with ease. She claimed she was good with animals.

Story

Attack on Titan: No Regrets

Isabel dodges a merchant

Isabel dodges a merchant while avoiding the Survey Corps

Prior to the fall of Wall Maria, Isabel was a delinquent, roaming the underground city of the capital alongside her companions Levi Ackerman and Furlan Church.[6] Before she met Levi and Furlan, she had lived among garbage in the underground. With Levi and Furlan, she obtained Vertical Maneuvering Equipment and became quite skilled with it.

In the anime, Isabel met Levi and Furlan while running from a group of thugs who had caught her trying to sneak up one of the stairways to the surface. She carried a bird with an injured wing in the hopes of setting it free above ground. Levi and Furlan defended her from the thugs, and she begged them to let her join them and learn to use the Vertical Maneuvering Equipment. When she had mastered it, the three released the bird together.

At a later time she, Levi, and Furlan were captured by Erwin Smith of the Survey Corps. When Levi was blackmailed into joining the Survey Corps, Isabel and Furlan chose to follow him. All three resolved to one day claw their way into a better life on the surface.[7]

Isabel beaten up

Levi has a flashback of a beaten up Isabel

In a flashback, Levi and Furlan sit in their lodging talking when Isabel stumbles in, bruised and beaten, with one pigtail long and the other side of her hair short. When asked what happened, Isabel claims she fell but Levi questions if she went to see 'low life scum bags' and asks what happened to her hair. She flinches and runs off saying her hair will grow back. Furlan later hears her crying and muttering of killing those who cut her hair off. When Levi walks through the door with a knife covered with a cloth, Furlan asks if he had killed them, and Levi remains silent.[8]

On her first expedition outside the walls, Isabel assisted Levi in taking down an Abnormal Titan. While displaying an energetic and bold attitude, in truth, she was overcome with fear but felt great courage and morale upon seeing Levi charge into battle.

The next day of the expedition, due to heavy rain, Levi takes the chance to hunt down Erwin, using the rain to his advantage. While his friends want to join him, Levi forcibly demands that Isabel and Furlan leave Erwin to him, stating that Flagon and Sairam's odds are better with them there.[9] After Levi rides off to find Erwin, five Titans, having just devoured another squad, attack the squad Isabel and Furlan are a part of.

Isabel defends Farlan

Isabel comes to Furlan's rescue

Along the way, Levi finds human corpses and analyses them as Titan encounters. He realizes that several Titans' footprints were heading back the way he came. Levi returns to find the Titans attacking the squad with Isabel and Furlan trying to avoid the battle. As they attempt to flee, a Titan jumps out of the fog, causing Furlan's horse to fall back onto his leg, pinning him to the ground. As Isabel tries to assist Furlan in his escape, she deflects the attack of one Titan. She swings around it in an attempt to cut its nape, but misses. She gives it a second try, but slips face-first onto the Titan's back, knocking her off balance.[10] Hanging by one wire and barely coming to her senses, she sees a second Titan. She is gripped by fear as it smiles at her and prepares to attack. The Titan launches itself straight at her, killing her on the back of the Titan she was still attached to. Before being crushed between the two Titans, she had been calling out to Levi for help. Her death causes Furlan to turn around and confront the Titans, but he realizes too late that his fall had badly damaged his equipment, and as Levi arrives, Furlan is devoured.

Witnessing the deaths of the first true friends he ever had, Levi goes into blind rage and slaughters the Titans. Erwin shows up and Levi threatens to kill him, blaming Erwin for the deaths of his friends. When Erwin talks to him, Levi realizes that it was his pride that had blinded him, and leaving his friends behind was the real reason for their deaths.

Return to Shiganshina arc

Levi and the deceased

Furlan and Isabel stand among Levi's many deceased comrades

Later in the Battle of Shiganshina, as Erwin Smith begins to lament the dwindling hopes of his dream, Isabel stands among the many fallen Survey Corps comrades in Erwin's mind, wanting to know if their deaths had meaning.[2]

Abilities

Isabel, along with Levi and Furlan, stole Vertical Maneuvering Equipment while living in the Underground City. They trained themselves and in time became proficient with it. They were so good that they could evade the Military Police easily, and they looked at it almost like a game.[11]

Relationships

  • Levi Ackerman - Levi found Isabel among some garbage in the underground prior to the beginning of the story. After that, the two grew so close that Isabel saw Levi as a brother figure, often calling him 'aniki' or 'Levi-aniki,' meaning older brother. Levi was extremely protective toward Isabel, even willing to kill some people who had harmed her and cut her hair. Isabel tended to take any criticism Levi sends to her very seriously, showing how much Levi's opinion mattered to her. When Isabel died, Levi was devastated by the loss of his only friends and blamed himself for their deaths.
  • Furlan Church - Having nearly opposite personalities, Isabel and Furlan were often seen at odds with one another. Furlan was calm, level-headed, and knew when things were serious. Isabel, on the other hand, was incredibly hyperactive, persistent, and tended to lose focus easily. Often, Furlan would lecture Isabel or try to be the voice of reason. Despite that, they were close friends to each other and Levi. In their first battle against a Titan, the two were shown to be cooperative and synchronized in their attacks, showing that the bond between them was strong. Isabel died trying to give Furlan time to escape the Titans, and her death made him stop running and face the Titans.
  • Hange Zoë - When they first met, Isabel was somewhat uncomfortable with the curious Hange, but quickly developed a better opinion of her when she complimented Levi's skill. Hange got along with Isabel much more easily than with Levi or Furlan, even giving her some sweets as a gift, which Isabel was happy to accept.[12]

Anime and Manga Differences

In the anime, when Levi arrives on the bloody scene, all of Furlan and Isabel's squad are already dead. Levi's horse trips over a body in the fog, throwing him to the ground, and he lands next to Isabel's severed head.[13]

In the anime adaptation, Isabel is seen learning to control the Vertical Maneuvering Equipment after Levi and Furlan had mastered it themselves. She seems clumsy at first, but she finally masters it.[14]

Trivia

  • Isabel's name has Hebrew origins, and means "God's Promise." Her surname is reference to the Magnolia family of flowers.
  • Isabel refers to Levi as "nii-chan/san" (aniki in the anime) which means "older/big brother" in English. While they are not related, it is common in Japan to refer to a slightly older male you respect, or are close with, as "nii-san."

References

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