The Yeager Brothers: Eren VS. Zeke (Discussed)

They say you can pick your friends, but you can’t pick your family.

Even in the universe of Hajime Isayama‘s Attack on Titan, the latter may be more true than the former. The friendship between Eren and Zeke determines the fate of every character in the story.

Are Zeke and Eren Yeager siblings?

Zeke’s younger half-brother is Eren. Zeke first became aware of him when Reiner and Bertholdt Hoover discovered Eren was the son of his father’s second family. Though they initially met as adversaries, they worked together to achieve their shared aims until Eren betrayed Zeke.

To cut a long tale short, Grisha had two wives and two children with each of them, making Zeke and Eren half-brothers, with Zeke being the oldest of the two. Until Zeke discovered Eren, they were completely oblivious to the situation.

Zeke Yeager and Eren Yeager are now two of the franchise’s most prominent characters, particularly the latter, who serve as the series’ main protagonist and antagonist.

Does Zeke know that Eren is his brother?

Eren and Zeke have the same father Grisha but different mothers. Grisha raised both of them very differently. 

At the start of the story, neither Zeke nor Eren were aware of the existence of each other. Zeke is shocked to hear about Eren when Reiner and Bertolt inform him about their old buddy.

Zeke Yeager is the older brother to Eren
Eren Yeager’s older brother is named Zeke Yeager.

He feels his brother is under Grisha’s control, as he once was, and decides to find him and assist him in any way he can. Zeke devises a strategy to capture Eren, who has the Founding Titan, while the Scouts are in Shiganshina.

Some years later, the brothers first meet there. They discover that each other shares a hatred for Grisha Jaeger and agree to team up, even if they don’t know what happens after they do so yet. 

Zeke & Eren
Zeke and Eren were unaware of one another’s existence.

Grisha’s circumstances: Eren vs. Zeke

Grisha grew up as a captive Eldian in Marley. Grisha and his sister Fay walked outside his internment camp one day out of curiosity after noticing a blimp landing near the camp.

Like Eren at the start of his journey, Grisha had this fire within him. He felt compelled to explore what was beyond his boundaries, so he left the camp. However, this resulted in him being captured and his sister being fed to the dogs.

Grisha, now a hardened man, was changed by this trauma. He became an Eldian Restorationist, a hidden club of Eldians who believe in Eldia’s greatness and want to galvanize the world for their return.

Dina Fritz, another Restorationist, fell in love with Grisha because of his full faith and authority in leadership. Together, they had Zeke, a son.

Meanwhile, The whole Restorationists gang was caught and sent to Paradis, where they were killed and turned into Titans. Grisha, on the other hand, survived. Along with his wife Dina, his friends and followers were killed there.

However, the guy who had saved him on that terrible day was Owl, a Paradisian spy with the Attack Titan’s abilities. He advised Grisha to fight for freedom, since this was the core of the Attack Titan, and to have a child to whom he might pass on the Attack Titan.

Grisha was being given a second chance at life. He ate Eren Kruger, the Owel, and called his child Eren, whom he had with Carla Yeager.

Son and father relationship: Eren vs. Zeke

Zeke’s Relationship 

Zeke could sense his father becoming distanced from him as a kid and was sometimes envious of other children who had better relations with their fathers.

Grisha adored Zeke. However, he quickly began to view Zeke as a weapon, intending to wield the royal blood inside him. Grisha pushed Zeke to join as the Eldian Restorationists’ mole when the Marley government tried to recruit Eldian Warriors. 

Dina and Grisha carved their views and philosophy into Zeke’s head for a short time, eventually driving him to turn against his parents due to their abuse of him. Grisha will subsequently feel bad about how he treated his son. 

Grisha was able to see Zeke because of the Attack Titan’s special ability to glimpse into the future, and emotionally apologized for causing him to suffer as a child and being a bad parent when Zeke and Eren witnessed Grisha’s precious memories.

Grisha apologized to Zeke
Grisha apologized to Zeke and asked him to stop Eren.

Eren’s Relationship

Grisha was possibly the closest person in his life to Eren, exceeding even his friendship with Carla. Grisha went away for a lot of medical tasks as a parent, but he encouraged Eren’s desire to venture outside the wall and offered to divulge the mysteries of the basement to him.

Grisha did not hesitate to reprimand Eren after he carelessly placed his life at risk when he rushed to save Mikasa. However, this was short-lived since he was relieved that his son was safe and felt proud that he did it to protect someone.

When Wall Maria collapsed, Grisha took it upon himself to do all in his power to stop the Reiss family before entrusting the world’s destiny to Eren. When Keith questioned Grisha, he described Eren as “different,” and he placed great faith in his son. 

Grisha had such faith in his son’s potential that he allowed himself to be consumed, hoping that Eren would one day harness the powers of the Founding Titan to control the Titans outside the walls and fight back against Marley.

Who has more power: Eren or Zeke?

Zeke is more powerful than Eren, but Eren is stronger.

Stronger in the sense that he inherited his father’s titan abilities. He can utilize his hardening abilities to bolster a weakening structure.

However, Eren does not have royal blood, whereas Zeke does. Zeke can transform people into pure titans and control them since he is of royal lineage, whereas Eren presently possesses three titan powers.

Eren could easily kill opponents or the Beast Titan by stinging them as the War Hammer Titan did back then, but he can’t wield the Founding Titan without Zeke’s support or without Eren coming into touch with royal blood.

Eren and Zeke in the path when Eren betrays Zeke.
Eren and Zeke in the path when Eren betrays Zeke.

In what episode is it revealed that Zeke is Eren’s brother?

It is revealed in episode 19 titled ‘Two Brothers’ of season 4 that Zeke is Erens brother. 

Two Brothers” is the climax of one of the series’ most intricate ties, resulting in a family reunion that will be spoken about for the rest of the year.

When Zeke informs Eren in season three, “I know what you’re going through,” he swings from aggression to compassion. “Your father has affected both of us. He manipulated your mind.”

This weighs heavily on Eren’s mind, yet his actions remain a mystery. Eren has never been the kind to discuss his troubles with Armin and Mikasa or to vent about his brother with any of the Survey Corps, and he’s become increasingly alienated as a result.

Eren’s Plan vs Zeke’s Plan

Eren’s strategy is straightforward. If the opponent is slain, the enemy is unable to fight back. But it’s a little more difficult than that. 

Zeke’s plan does not directly murder anyone, but it is awful to have no offspring. I believe Eren’s strategy (together with killing billions) destroyed the world’s ecosystems. 

Both plans are dreadful. However, in terms of options. Zeke Yeagers, in my opinion, is ironically the least dangerous.

Why did Eren betray Zeke?

Eren betrayed Zeke because their methods of protecting Eldia and concepts of freedom were the opposite.

This betrayal did not happen anywhere. The truth was obvious if we examine Eren and Zeke’s characters carefully.

The scene where Eren betrays Zeke

Eren, being a warrior, was unable to accept Zeke’s plan for euthanasia. Eren considers himself fortunate to have been “born into this planet.” And the people of Eldia already had that option, which he did not wish to take away.

Zeke felt his plan would bring peace to the world since he believes Eldians will always be cursed to suffer in this world owing to their ability to turn into Titans.

Other nations will always distrust them, and their colossal powers will always cause confrontation with everyone, resulting in an everlasting circle of death and misery.

A fighter like Eren would never consent to a timid surrender in the face of calamity. He would never have turned his back on those who dubbed him the devil. Eren was dead set on his aim and wasn’t about to give up.

Early relationship with GrishaHarmoniousConstrained
MotherCarla YeagerDina Fritz
BirthplaceSiganshina District, Southern edge of wall MariaLiberio, Internment camp for Eldians in Marley
LineageEren has no royal lineageZeke has a royal lineage since his mother is from the royal family.
Difference between the Yeager brothers

Are Eren and Zeke collaborating?

While they were adversaries fighting against each other when they first met during the conflict in the Shiganshina District, Eren eventually accepts the support his brother is bringing him and his vision of Eldian salvation and decides to join him.

They are already shown working towards their common aims in the days leading up to the raid on Liberio, disregarding their groups throughout the approaching conflict, and Zeke is unhappy to see Eren exposed to the same terrible indoctrination he had undergone as a youngster from their father.

Eren supports Zeke’s proposal for euthanasia to sterilize the Subjects of Ymir, shares its purpose, and chooses to stand with his elder brother. Eren trusts Zeke enough to rebel against the Survey Corps and flee with him to prepare the attack on Marley and organize the revolution inside the Walls to overturn Paradis’ regime with the support of Jaegerists and Anti-Marley Faction volunteers.

Similarly, Zeke has a brotherly, even loving relationship with Eren, feeling glad to be able to bond so strongly with a family member after so many years and attempting to defend him from enemy attacks during the last fight at Shiganshina. Nevertheless, Eren’s conduct is shown to be a ruse, which surprises Zeke.

Final Verdict

  • The Yeager brothers are the heart of the Attack on titan saga, the plot would be incomplete without them.
  • Eren and Zeke both have tragic stories and dreadfully horrible plans of action.
  • Both Eren and Zeke are poles apart in terms of their relationship with Grisha, their personality, strategy, and abilities. 
  • Although they are brothers, but their difference in ideologies made them deadly foes to each other in the end. 

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