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|God-like power. Everyone who gets their hands on it seems to turn compassionate. Would the same thing happen even to garbage like me? I want to know... What's it feel like? What does it look like from up there?|
|— Kenny expresses his desire for power|
Captain Kenny Ackerman (ケニー・アッカーマン隊長 Kenī Akkāman Taichō?) was a member of the Military Police Brigade's First Interior Squad and leader of the Anti-Personnel Control Squad. He was the uncle of Levi Ackerman and was responsible for the murder of Historia's mother, Alma.
Kenny Ackerman was a very tall and slim man who appeared to be well-built. He had short, coarse-looking dark hair that reached to his neck and also had a thin beard along his jawline. He had the appearance of a middle-aged man with wrinkles around his eyes, which were small and piercing. He was mostly seen wearing a simple white shirt with a black tie that was never fully done up, and a large black overcoat that reached past his knees. He also had a bowler hat with a white band around it. He was almost always seen wearing a pronounced scowl, even when making a foul joke.
When he was younger, Kenny had a more defined face and quite less wrinkles. He did not have a beard but he still had dark sideburns. Also his hair seemed to be slightly longer. He used to wear a long coat, dark trousers and shoes, a white button shirt and another hat.
- Main article: Kenny Ackerman/Image Gallery
Kenny's main goal was to obtain power, and his personality was molded around this goal. As such, he was a ruthless individual who did not hesitate to do anything to get the job done, including murdering children or betraying allies. He operated with utter professionalism, hiding his emotions behind a fixed expression and showing neither remorse nor pleasure in his mission. However, he actually enjoyed the act of murdering, to the point of becoming an infamous serial killer. He also showed a strong impulse to kill Uri Reiss when they first met.
Kenny had a strange sense of humor, seen when he said that his grandfather's story about the persecution of the Ackermans was "funny", and when he freed Eren Yeager in order for him to fight against Historia just for his own entertainment, even though the future of humanity was at stake. He had shown a cynical mood occasionally, like when he told Rod Reiss that he was sticking around because he was looking for a toilet.
Even so, he was able to show true admiration and respect to those who he believed they deserved, like Uri or his second in command. On the contrary, he disliked cowards and did not respect them regardless of their positions. Not only did he demand answers from the king Rod Reiss when killing the latter's mistress, but he also called Rod 'Your Majesty' with a sarcastic tone. Kenny later revealed that he only obeyed Rod as a plan to obtain power, and that his true intentions were always to become a Titan and gain the Coordinate himself; which was in direct opposition with Rod's goals.
At some unspecific point, either before or after becoming a serial killer, Levi recalls Kenny saying he felt a sudden inexplicable surge of power and with it he knew "exactly what to do".
In the decades prior to the fall of Wall Maria, Kenny was an infamous serial killer that stalked victims in Mitras. His preferred method of killing was to slit the throats of his victims, which earned him his infamous handle "Kenny the Ripper" (切り裂きケニー Kirisaki Kenī?), and it was rumored that he murdered over 100 members of the Military Police Brigade.During this period, he had a conversation with his grandfather, who was about to die. Kenny informed him that he had murdered more members of the Military Police, and that he also has found his sister, Kuchel, working as a prostitute in the Underground and pregnant. He also explained that one part of the family had moved to the south, over Shiganshina District, but they were still poor.
Then Kenny asked his grandfather why the Ackermans, a bloodline of warriors once close to the crown, were being persecuted to the point of near extinction. His grandfather explained that the Ackermans were not hated, but feared; because their memories, along with those of the Asian races, could not be wiped out by the power of the king who created the Walls. The Ackermans of the past did not tell their children the truth in order to protect them, though this did not stop the persecution. Even so, Kenny found the story funny.Some time after that conversation, Kenny talked with a contact in the government, who informed him of the existence of the Reiss family, the true royal family within the Walls. Kenny tracked down Uri and Rod Reiss and tried to kill them, but failed when Uri partially transformed into a Titan and trapped him in his hand.
Though Rod tried to shoot Kenny while he was immobilized, Uri stopped him, wanting to interrogate him to discover the identity of his contact; and finding Kenny's hatred towards them justified due to the persecution that the Ackermans suffered at the hands of the monarchy.
Kenny attempted another attack by throwing his knife at Uri, though the latter stopped him with his arm. Seeing this, Kenny started screaming at Uri, asking for another chance to prepare a proper ambush. To Kenny's shock, Uri released him, and even bowed before him, apologizing for the persecution towards the Ackermans and pleading him to spare his life. Kenny was surprised to see this coming from a king with that much power, and offered to help Uri, which the latter accepted.
Kenny became Uri's bodyguard and close friend, and remained at his side until the latter's death. After some years, he returned to the Underground to see his sister but found that she was already dead, so he adopted her son, Levi, but introducing himself to Levi as a close friend of Kuchel's, without revealing their true family relationship. Kenny lived with Levi and trained him until he was strong enough to survive for himself, after which he abandoned him without saying goodbye.Years later, Uri explained that he would not be long for the world and he would be passing his powers to some of Rod's children, but that he would live on in their memories. Uri told him that he saw the world as ending in some time but before it happened, he wanted to make a paradise for mankind. Kenny apparently did not witness his friend's death, because in Rod's flashback, he was not present. After Uri passed the Coordinate to his niece Frieda and died as a result, Kenny made a plan to obtain power and used his influence to establish the Anti-Personnel Control Squad. It is implied that he had ceased of being a serial killer long ago, as he talked about this to his subordinates in past tense, and that the terror that he once inspired dwindled into an Urban Legend.
However, the soldiers did not care because, as Traute Carven said, they had given up in the task of killing Titans, and the only remaining alternative is killing humans. This greatly pleased Kenny, as he had found his new favorite soldier and second in command.
Captain Ackerman first appeared as a member of the group that arrived at the place where Historia grew up. He grabbed Historia's mother and asked Rod Reiss if she and Historia were related to him. Rod Reiss denied it and Captain Ackerman stealthily slit Historia's mother's throat while she wished that Historia had never been born. As another member approached Historia to do the same, Rod Reiss told them to stop and saved her life by telling her that her new name would be Krista Lenz, and she was never allowed to talk about what happened here.
Kenny Ackerman appears five years after the death of Historia's mother as the leader of the group sent to retrieve Eren and Historia from Dimo Reeves. Upon arriving he reminds Historia who he is and remarks how much she has grown. He tells Reeves that he needs to speak with him outside to which Reeves asks if he is being properly rewarded. Kenny brings in his team and tells Reeves that he will be rewarded with more jobs due to his success here. Reeves wonders about the carriage they brought and why Kenny would not just use the one Dimo brought, which prompts Kenny to remark that all businessmen care about is making money and you can not trust them. In the woods, he asks Reeves if he knows who Levi Ackerman is, to which Reeves responds that everyone knows Levi but he had never heard his full name. Reeves expresses worry that Levi is likely coming after him because he kidnapped Historia and Eren. Kenny tells Reeves that he personally trained Levi and then kills him in the same way he killed Historia's mother, claiming that it is his own fault for Reeves' betrayal. Traute Carven then tells him that Eren and Historia both had small knives on them but are still captured. After confirming that everyone from Reeves corporation is dead, he tells her to prepare the anti-personnel vertical maneuvering equipment, and then says that it is time for the Anti-Personnel Control Squad to show what they can do.
Kenny travels with his two captives and arrives in Trost, being followed by Levi and the Survey Corps the entire time. Kenny is able to sneak up behind Levi and Nifa on a roof and quickly fire two bullets from his modified vertical equipment. While Levi is able to narrowly dodge the bullet meant for him, Nifa is killed instantly. First Interior Squad members also make quick work of Keiji and a goggled member of Hange's squad. As Levi watches with horror Kenny reloads his guns while sarcastically saying hello. He fires a hook into the chimney that Levi is hiding behind and flips around it. He takes aim while remarking that Levi has not changed much as Levi draws his blade and shouts Kenny's name.
Levi throws one of his blades at Kenny who uses part of his maneuvering equipment to block it. He quickly fires at Levi but misses and hits the chimney as Levi hid behind his Survey Corps cloak. Levi dashes off the roof and begins using his equipment to get away as Kenny reloads and surprisingly remarks that Levi ran away after all. Kenny remains on the roof as several First Interior Squad members fly after Levi with their equipment and fire at him. They miss and more shots are fired at the Survey Corps Captain as he propels himself through an alley. Levi takes a harsh hit to the side of the face that draws blood before he flees into a nearby tavern.
Kenny lands just outside and claims that the scent of a tiny rat is coming from inside the tavern. He bursts through the doors and announces that the 'Great Military Policeman' has come to kill the evil villain. Kenny looks around while concluding that Levi is not here but is corrected when Levi says that it has been a long time from under the counter. Sarcastically commenting on the nostalgia, Kenny asks Levi to show his face and is told by Levi that all he does is shoot bullets at his face. Kenny brushes this off by saying that he came to see Levi's brains, while Levi expresses amazement at Kenny still being alive and his occupation within the military police. Kenny again brushes Levi off by saying that a brat can not understand adult matters but promptly corrects himself by saying that Levi has gained a few years despite being a runt. Kenny is confused since the strategies he taught Levi would not have led him into this tavern, since he has no escape route. Kenny grows impatient and throws a chair which breaks several bottles as he asks Levi why he joined the Survey Corps. He proposes his own theory that since he and Levi lived among garbage they were shocked when they learned how big the world is. As the Captain picks up a chair and moves forward he claims that their shitty lives had no meaning and only hobbies give life meaning. Levi finally answers by asking if killing his subordinates are Kenny's hobbies. For the third time Kenny brushes off a complaint by saying that he will kill as many times as it takes for a larger goal. As he begins to say that Levi is killing for his own reasons, he is shot with the bar owners gun by Levi who used a bottle to see where Kenny was. He is launched outside by the blast and falls on his back as his subordinates wonder if he is okay.
Levi throws a chair through a window and makes his escape by hooking one enemy and using him as a shield against the fire of the others. Kenny's female subordinate from the kidnapping asks if he finally died while he calls Levi a stupid bastard, apparently having survived due to the chair he was holding absorbing most of the blast. He gets up and says that they have been done in as his subordinate notes that firearms are legal for self-defense in bars. Kenny remarks that Levi has grown and after his subordinate says that it is great, Kenny replies that there is nothing good about it and his dream is slipping away from him. Having personally given up the pursuit of Levi, Kenny delivers Eren and Historia to Rod Reiss. He lifts off Eren's coffin and tells him that it has been a long journey. As Rod frees Historia he apologizes to her for everything and hugs her.
Kenny next appears in some kind of underground dungeon. He is sharpening a knife as Rod Reiss and Historia look at Eren, who is shirtless and chained up. Rod remarks that it is time to put an end to this battle. Eren wakes up from his sleep and is told by Historia that everything will be okay as Kenny and Rod talk far away. Historia, under no restraints, tells Eren that her father has always been an ally of humanity and that the Survey Corps misunderstood him. She admits that he had Nick and Reeves killed but believes he had no other choice. Historia claims that he did it for mankind as the man himself walks over and Kenny appears to leave. Despite this, he actually stays fairly close by as Rod hugs Historia and says that he will explain the rest. He leads Historia to Eren and explains that this is his first time here, although he admits it is not unusual that Eren recognizes it. Historia asks him to explain to Eren but Rod responds that by touching him he will gain memories of what happened here. After placing both their hands on Eren and observing his shocked reaction, Rod asks him if he remembers his father's sins.
Kenny continues to listen in as Historia reacts tearfully and asks how she could have forgotten 'her', who was kind to her and taught her many things when she was a child. Rod asks if she met with Frieda but she replies that she does not know who that is. Rod explains that the woman Historia described is most likely Frieda Reiss, his daughter and therefore Historia's older half-sister. Rod continues by saying that Frieda worried about Historia and would go check on her but likely erased herself from Historia's memories in order to protect her. By activating Eren's memories, Rod accidentally did the same to Historia. Historia asks her father where Frieda is so that she can thank her and Rod replies that Frieda is deceased before hugging Historia. He explains that he had five children and a wife who were all killed by Grisha Yeager in this very place five years ago. Rod says that he did not know Grisha but that the man came to steal a 'power' that the Reiss family had, the power of the Titan that Frieda could shift into. Even though she possessed this invincible power, she was inexperienced and thus eaten by Grisha who stole the power. He then murdered every remaining member of the Reiss family except Rod and destroyed the underground dungeon, which is actually underneath a chapel.
As Historia absorbs the information and asks how Grisha could do something so terrible, Kenny reveals himself by asking if they are done chattering away. He explains to them that the military has switched sides, overthrown the puppet king, and taken over with Darius Zackly in charge. He adds that since they are certainly looking for them it will only be a short while before they find this place, so Rod should hurry up. Rod replies that he can only move forward once the Anti-Personnel Control Squad leaves, Kenny included. Kenny coyly asks if Rod is angry before replying that he was just looking for a toilet. Rod answers that he trusts Kenny before telling him to leave, and Kenny sarcastically calls Rod 'Your Majesty' while saying the same. Clearly displeased with how the conversation went, Kenny tips his hat and again appears to leave. Rod leaves Historia and Eren alone for a short while as he retrieves a doctors bag and remarks that everyone is finally gone. He apologizes to Historia for making her wait and pulls a small case out of the bag revealing a needle filled with serum. Historia asks what it is and Rod dodges the question by asking if she wants to see Frieda again and replies that she does. Eren pulls at his chains and attempts to yell as he sees the needle that Rod has.
Rod, hearing the sounds of the First Interior Squad battling Levi's squad and Hange tells Historia that they should hurry up. Eren again attempts to speak and Historia coldly asks him what as Rod responds that Eren has finally realized his fate due to his family's sins. Rod adds that the power stolen by Grisha will finally return home with Historia. As Historia listens, Rod explains that the cave they are in was created by a Titan, the same as the three Walls. The Titan also manipulated memories in order to ensure that humanity would live in peace, however some bloodlines are exempted. Despite this, Rod tells Historia that no one knows human history before 100 years or how the Titans were created, except Frieda. She also knew about the history of the world and was 15 when she obtained this Titan's power.
Eight years ago, Rod reveals, Frieda ate her uncle who was Rod's younger brother in this same place. This is the duty of the Reiss family who has done this ritual to inherit the Titan's power for 100 years. The person gaining the power learns everything about the world and is entrusted with the fate of humanity, however no one with this power has ever revealed the secrets. As Historia attempts to ask a question, Rod interrupts her by saying that the broken Walls, men dying, and coup d'état could have been prevented if Grisha had not stolen Frieda's power, he adds that even exterminating the Titans would have been possible. Historia asks why things are like this and Rod responds that with the power inside Eren it can not be activated since he is not a Reiss. Historia is again interrupted but this time by Kenny, who lowers himself from the ceiling and is revealed to have been listening in this entire time. He asks Rod to confirm what he just said about only a Reiss being able to obtain the Titan's power, and he does. Kenny, looking desperate, says to himself that even if he ate Eren there would be no point.He violently lifts Rod into the air by the collar amid Historia's protests and points his pistol directly at his eye. Rod asks if Kenny thinks that he is lying and Kenny replies no while adding that he has been waiting for this day to see if Rod would lie. He tells Rod that he knows this is the succession ritual while being angry that Rod knew his intentions and strung him along. Rod replies that he is grateful but also that he was unaware why his brother ever took "a dog like you" off the streets. Kenny interrupts him and says that if he insults Uri once more, he will blast Rod's face in half. Historia quickly dashes at Kenny's gun and knocks it away while telling Kenny to let go of her father. Kenny calmly calls her a poor thing and says that surely she must understand that Rod is trying to turn her into a monster who will eat Eren. Historia replies that she will do it since it is her mission and adds that there is nothing sad about saving humanity. Historia further declares that she will wipe the world clean of Titans as Kenny tells her to hold on and remember what Rod did to her. He reminds her that her birth was a tragedy and only conceived because Rod wanted to feel good with a servant. He continues by saying that her mother only did it to gain favor and everyone hated her birth, including congress and her own father. Kenny does not believe the notion that Rod saved Historia out of love and claims that he only did it because Grisha killed the rest of his children and he needed Historia's blood, which is why the Church of the Walls had been keeping an eye on her.
Kenny begins shoving a knife down Rod's throat while saying that this piece of garbage did not want to turn himself into a Titan and so used his family. Kenny claims he can say more and does so by saying that he covered up the theft of the Titan's power in order to keep the Reiss family in power. Furthermore, Rod only started talking after Eren saved Trost District which was only after innumerable sacrifices. Kenny, shouting, concludes that Rod only cares about protecting himself and not his family, humanity, and especially not Historia. To Kenny's surprise Rod is able to pull the knife out of his throat and tells Historia that Kenny is wrong while badly cutting his left hand. He admits that he has not told Historia some things but does reveal that he can not become a Titan for an unspecified reason.
He tells Historia that she can not trust others as Kenny finally releases Rod from his grip and asks if that is true. Historia rushes to Rod's side before her father tells Kenny that he has been a loyal servant and he is proud of Uri's decision. He says that Kenny's ambitions will go unfulfilled but adds that he believes humanity will see peace again. Finally, he tells Kenny that he is free to leave and should go live a long life. Kenny, with a blank expression, remarks that Rod's suggestion would not be very fun. He ascends the stairs towards the chained Eren and as Rod asks him what he is doing Kenny ignores him and tells Eren to turn into a Titan. He does request that Eren count to three before transforming and then removes the mouth restraint, much to the horror of the two Reisses. Kenny says that both Historia and Eren can become Titans and fight to the death, with peace returning if Historia wins and nothing changing is Eren wins. He slices Eren's forehead with his knife while saying that he is helping Eren transform. As the blood falls down Eren's face, Kenny asks Rod if he can truly call dying of natural causes living.
Rod ignores the question and gives the needle to Historia in a panic, telling her that she will become a combat-type Titan and has hope of eating Eren since he is in restraints. Rod tells her to hurry and corrects himself by saying that she only has to ingest his spinal fluid, not completely eat him. Kenny uses his vertical equipment to pull himself up to a safe distance while remarking that he should get away from what is about to happen. As Historia raises the needle to her arm she hesitates and asks Eren why he is not transforming. Eren, with a mixture of blood and tears on his face, weakly says that this never needed to happen. If his dad had not stolen Frieda's power than she could have prevented all the death and horrific events. He remembers Armin's grandfather, Thomas Wagner, Mina Carolina, Mylius Zeramuski, Nac Tias, Marco Bott, Petra Ral, Oluo Bozado, Eld Jinn, Gunther Schultz, people in Stohess District, the soldiers who rescued him from the Armored Titan, and finally Hannes. In tears, he admits that is not everyone and that he could never atone for all those deaths. Eren says that none of this needed to happen and after thinking about more memories he says that he never needed to happen. Eren requests that Historia end Eren's life as a favor and save humanity. Historia tells Eren that the day he called her a normal person made her very happy before finally injecting herself with the needle.
However Kenny gets very surprised when Historia hesitates to inject the serum. He even starts laughing after Historia rejects the serum, harms her father and tries to release Eren. After Rod drinks the Titan serum, Kenny gets dragged by Rod's heat and sheer size, cursing Rod for becoming a Titan. Kenny tries to escape using his anti-personnel vertical maneuvering equipment, saying that Rod did not know about Titans either. He sees some members of his squad and his right hand coming towards him. He quickly orders them not to come, but it is finally too late and they get trapped under the falling debris.
After the now transformed Rod Reiss gets killed by Historia and the Survey Corps, Kenny Ackerman is seen resting against a tree near the Reiss Chapel. He remembers how he first met Uri and the subsequent effects upon his own life. We also see that, while most of his subordinates died because of the falling debris under the Reiss Chapel, Kenny managed to escape using his equipment. Some time later Levi and one of Levi's subordinates find Kenny, who confirms that Kenny is the only member remaining, while pointing out the man's severe burns and blood loss. Kenny reveals a stolen Titan serum to Levi and weighs out the benefits of shifting into a Titan, to which Levi questions why it was not injected earlier while Kenny was still able to do so. Levi retorts to Kenny's meek reply as a poor excuse, after Kenny explained that he did not want to end up like Rod Reiss. Kenny then contemplates how everybody he met was always enslaved to something: women, power, alcohol, etc., and how people would have been unable to accomplish anything without that commitment. At the brink of death, Kenny confesses that he is Levi's uncle and that he left him years ago because he was not fit to be a father. As a final gift, Kenny gives Levi the Titan serum that he stole from Rod. Soon after, he dies, sitting under the tree where he rested.
Decades ago, the one-day captain was an infamous serial killer who murdered within the capital and was capable of taking out over a hundred members of the Military Police, showing exceptional battle prowess. He is also very fast as he suddenly appeared behind Historia Reiss's mother. He seems to have a lot of pull within the government as he was seen talking to a member of the Royal Family in a professional manner, which implies he reports to a higher authority than Rod Reiss. On top of that, he is the leader of the First Interior Squad, showing high leadership skills.
When Levi felt the possibility of facing his old teacher, he was highly uneasy despite going head-on against Titans on a recurring basis. He is also very analytical and intelligent and is the one who taught Levi to think in the same strategic genius as he does, even outmaneuvering him and tricking Humanity's best soldier into walking into a trap. The fact that he was able to teach an individual as skilled as Levi these things suggests that he is an adept teacher.
Anti-Personnel Vertical Maneuvering Equipment
Like the Survey Corps, the First Interior Squad have vertical maneuvering equipment as well, called anti-personnel vertical maneuvering equipment. However it is also equipped with guns so as to kill humans rather than Titans. He is able to use them to scale buildings at incredible speeds and assault his targets before they can react.
- Levi Ackerman - Kenny trained Levi when they were younger, and they even lived together. He appears to have some respect for Levi, since he called him "his pride" and though he respects Levi, his dream appears to be killing him. The meaning behind their similar last names implies a familiar relationship, however Levi was unaware of his last name until he was told by a soldier, though he was not surprised by him being an Ackerman. It is later revealed that Kenny is Levi's uncle, who took care of the latter after his mother, Kuchel Ackerman died. After teaching Levi how to fight, he abandoned him feeling that he could not be a good parent to Levi.
- Uri Reiss - Unlike with Rod, Kenny showed true respect towards Rod's younger brother. Rod said that Uri was the one that took Kenny in, and when Rod referred to Kenny as a "stray dog" and to Uri as "whimsical", Kenny ignored the insult towards himself and only cared about Uri, threatening Rod to blow off half of his head if he kept talking about him in that way.
- Rod Reiss - Though initially Kenny seemed to be loyal to Rod, being a sort of "right hand man" for him, it was later revealed that he does not like him at all, believing that he is a coward that only cares about himself, and only obeyed him because he wanted to steal the Coordinate power from him. When Rod revealed that the Coordinate would be useless if it were not used by a member of the Reiss bloodline, Kenny showed his true colors and did not hesitate to insult Rod and put a gun on his eye and later a knife in his mouth. Kenny also appears to be following orders from someone beyond the Reiss' family power.
- Historia Reiss - Kenny killed her mother, Alma without hesitation and was going to kill Historia had Rod not intervened. Years later, he insulted her when he captured her and Eren, saying that in the five years since he last saw her, she is barely grown. However, he appeared to slightly care for her, as he tried to tell her that Rod was going to make her turn into a Titan and eat Eren and told her that Rod was a liar and a coward.
- Alma - Alma was one of Kenny's victims, having her throat slit several days after the fall of Wall Maria. He killed her without hesitation. He appeared to be somewhat familiar with her, as he knew her name. However he saw her as something Rod was a slave to.
- Traute Carven - As soon as she explains what she thinks about the world, Kenny gets very surprised and happy, showing that he indeed likes the way she thinks about the world.
- Kenny's back story, preferred method of killing, physical appearance, and the title of Chapter 57 being "Kenny the Ripper" resemble real-life serial killer Jack the Ripper. One theory of the Ripper's identity and motive was that he was a government agent murdering victims as part of a larger conspiracy.
- Kenny was the heaviest known human character in the series, weighing 120 kg.
- Hajime Isayama has stated that Kenny's character was partially inspired by the character Trevor Philips from Grand Theft Auto V.