MBTI: Eren Yeager- ESFP
While they’re often considered the most fun loving, ESFPs could just as easily be considered the most hot-headed. While their thinker brothers, the ISTP and ESTP have their moments, it’s the ESFP male that may have the hardest time keeping themselves composed in times of stress and it’s often times the ESFP themselves that create the situation.
Eren is a great example of the “hero” ESFP and another display that the anime/manga world is the most diverse in terms of protagonists.
It’s easy to see where Pacific Rim got much of its inspiration from and what Jack the Giant Slayer may or may not have ripped off. Attack on Titan is all the kind of stuff anime and manga is often known for: Childish protagonists, somber girls with swords, giant monsters, giant monsters controlled by people– you get the idea.
But most of those don’t carry the same heavy themes that Titan carries, making it all the more interesting and impactful that an ESFP would be leading the pack. There’s several “stronger” personality types in the show. Many characters are more skilled in every area, yet Eren keeps up with the group in each obstacle. Well, to describe the ESFP- all balls, no brains.
“Idealistic, hotheaded, aggressive, and impulsive” so says the Titans wiki, all of these fit the guy that eventually turned the tide in the titan war. These things alone don’t describe only the ESFP temperament but if you’ve read or seen the material, you know Eren himself has got to have maybe the worst temper in fiction.
He cries in his sleep, starts fights with anybody that sounds like they’ve accepted living behind the walls, and is willing to throw his life away based on living in the moment with no thought of the reality of the situation. With all these examples of Eren’s whiny behavior, it was interesting to see if he was ever going to change. Sure, he’s sincere but when is he actually going to do something positive?
This is often the way people feel about real life ESFPs; ten seconds into the future is too far away and anything they feel like doing is something they’ll regret if they don’t do it now. It’s their dominant Se that urges them to make the use of the moment and their inferior Ni that can allow them to be so imbalanced.
At one point he even gives his life to save his friend by jumping into a titan’s gingivitis-filled mouth. Another type may have written their buddy off at that point but Eren, as an ESFP, doesn’t hesitate.
In this weakness of often not thinking, ESFPs also have their strength of acting selflessly for others at times without thinking of themselves. This is due to their secondary Fi that tells them what they value. Eren hates the titans with everything he is and hopes to have a hand in murdering them all. His short monologues in scenes like the one below may best define his character.
He’s got his belief and goal and he doesn’t ever hold back on his emotions. There’s another scene when he’s imprisoned after his first titan transformation where he makes the same declaration but as more of a man losing his sanity than the boy who lost his mother. Do I need to go into the connection made between an emotionally unrestrained ESFP that can become an unstoppable force of nature when provoked?
Nah, you see where I’m going.
One of Eren’s most defining traits is the fact that while he isn’t as skilled in any areas as his team mates, it’s his will to defeat the enemy that keeps him moving until he finally has some skill on the battlefield. Will alone wouldn’t do it but the Artisan types all have extraverted sensing in their top two functions which naturally sets them up to adapt to whatever scenario they find themselves in physically.
This isn’t to say they’d always come out on top in a competition of physicality but it does give them an edge that others types have to find ways around, in a sense. Se is why so many Artisan types can work in physically distressing jobs for long hours without stopping. They might complain for the heck of it, but they keep going.
But it’s not just a physical rush that keeps Eren going but his belief that all titans need to be murdered and done away with so humanity can reclaim the earth; something he’s seen very little of in his two decades here.
And while ESFPs are often clownish and playful, the males especially have a side to them you’ll see come out when they feel you’re making them the butt of a joke. They’ll do it to themselves on their own but if you take that liberty, God help us all.
Eren is living in a world where he always feels like humans are the punchlines to the titan’s jokes which explains why he’s so serious. I mean, really- is there a more serious series out there? If so, I haven’t seen it.
And this isn’t to say that Eren is an “unhealthy” or “twisted” ESFP; he’s just not as goofy because he’s got to keep up with everybody around him. C’mon, his mom was eaten by a giant naked titan, who wouldn’t sober up?