Erwin Smith may have made his departure from Attack on Titan during the most recent season of the anime, but he has had a significant impact on the events that took place until this point in the series — and as one of the most influential commanders of the Survey Corps, that impact will likely continue even in his absence.

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The 13th commander of the Scout Regiment, Erwin is best known for his dedication to securing life outside the walls for the people of Paradis Island. It's his singular goal throughout the series, and it's one that he'll seemingly sacrifice anything to achieve, whether it's his soldiers' lives or his own. But while every Attack on Titan fan can attest to Erwin's resolution to his cause, there are plenty of things we don't know about the commander just from watching the series.

Here are 10 things you probably didn't know about Commander Erwin.

10 He Was The First Commander To Take Over While The Previous One Still Lived

The Survey Corps has a long history of losing members, and commanders are no exception to that rule. Most of the commanders of the Survey Corps took up the mantle after their predecessor died in battle, but Erwin was the first to do so while the former commander still lived. As we learn over the course of the anime, Keith Shadis led the Scouts before Erwin, though the regiment suffered significant losses under his leadership.

Overcome with guilt and shamed for his incompetence, Shadis retired from his duties as the leader of the Scout Regiment, choosing to train military recruits instead. Given that Erwin was one of his most respected soldiers, it makes sense that he succeeded him as commander. It was a unique beginning for Erwin's tenure, which is fitting, especially considering how revolutionary Erwin's rule over the regiment would prove to be.

9 Erwin Was Partially Inspired By A Character From Watchmen

Hajime Isayama must be a pretty big Watchmen fan since both Levi Ackerman and Erwin were partly inspired by characters from that series. Supposedly, Erwin's character was somewhat based off Watchmen's Ozymandias, an extremely intelligent vigilante who based most of his actions on his idealistic beliefs about the world and what it could be.

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And understanding the reasoning behind Ozymandias' decisions, it's easy to draw a line between the two characters. While Erwin can't be called a vigilante, his ideals often influenced his decisions and clouded his judgment in much the same way as Ozymandias. Erwin is also frequently praised for his pragmatism and strategic know-how, traits that likely stemmed from Ozymandias' intellect.

8 His Voice Actors Also Voice Sebastian From Black Butler

Fans of the anime Black Butler will recognize both the Japanese and English voice actors for Commander Erwin, as both of them also voice the demon butler Sebastian Michaelis. Of course, Erwin and Sebastian have little in common beyond their voice actors. One character is a sadistic and cruel creature, while the other is quite relatably human. Really, the only thing the two can be said to have in common is their dedication to their missions.

It's always interesting to see voice actors play such vastly different characters. Most of the time, viewers don't even realize it is the same person behind the microphone — at least not until they log onto the internet and check.

7 Erwin's Nickname As A Child Was "Eyebrow"

It hasn't escaped most Attack on Titan fans that Erwin has thick, perfectly shaped eyebrows, something that has become a bit of a running joke among the fandom. It might further amuse viewers to know that Erwin's eyebrow design isn't something that's escaped Isayama's notice either. The anime's creator is well aware of how prominent Erwin's eyebrows are compared to his other features.

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In fact, Isayama even revealed that the commander's nickname as a child was "Eyebrow." Truthfully, it's not a very flattering nickname — but then, plenty of great men weren't quite so impressive as children. At least Erwin's soldiers never took to calling him "Eyebrow."

6 He Has His Own Song Dedicated To Him

Attack on Titan features some pretty compelling music throughout its episodes, and some of the songs viewers hear repeatedly in the anime are actually dedicated to the show's characters. In fact, it's been confirmed that eight characters have their own theme songs, including Eren, Armin, Mikasa, Reiner, Bertolt, Jean, Levi, and Erwin.

The song dedicated to Erwin is called "Hope of Mankind," which is sung by his voice actor, Daisuke Ono. The title of the song is a fitting one for the commander, as he does represent hope for humanity's future over the course of the anime.

5 Erwin Is Single Because His Lifespan Is Uncertain

Most of the characters on Attack on Titan don't show much interest in romance, and it's easy to understand why. Living in a world where humans are constantly plagued by man-eating Titans, who has time to worry about love? This is a sentiment that Erwin appears to agree with, at least according to the anime's creator.

Isayama revealed that Erwin remains single for most of the series because he isn't quite sure how much longer he'll be alive. It's a fair concern given his role as commander of the Survey Corps, and it's probably safe to assume that he doesn't think it would be fair to himself or a potential partner to get involved when it's so likely that he'll perish.

4 Despite His Ruthless Attitude, He Feels Guilt For His Losses

Erwin is known for ruthlessly fighting for his goal of freeing humanity from the Titans, and he demonstrates repeatedly that he's willing to sacrifice the lives of his soldiers to achieve that end. Even in the face of certain death, Erwin demands that his fighters give their hearts and souls for the cause, and he's even willing to sacrifice his own life as well.

Although Erwin puts on an emotionless expression and goes forward in spite of these sacrifices, the anime and manga suggest that he does feel some remorse for indirectly killing his own men. He acknowledges how many losses there have been just to see his own ambitions achieved, though he usually quickly changes course when such thoughts arise. Still, it's clear that he feels sorry somewhere in there.

3 Losing His Right Arm Forced Erwin To Salute Incorrectly

With the commander so willing to sacrifice his life fighting against the Titans, it's no surprise that he lost plenty of other things during his many battles against the beasts. During the second season of the anime, he even loses his right arm during the attempt to get Eren back from Reiner and Bertolt — something that severely impairs his ability to fight later on.

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As it turns out, losing his right arm also makes Erwin incapable of saluting properly by common standards. Given that the members of the Paradis Island military salute with their right arms, Erwin saluting with his left is considered incorrect. It's possible this is an intentional detail since Erwin's loyalty to the royalty and higher-ranking officers on Paradis Island wavers going into the third season.

2 Erwin Likely Suspected He Would Die Soon

Erwin fought harder than ever to return to the Shiganshina District and uncover the secrets hidden in the basement of Eren Yeager's childhood home. Unfortunately, Erwin doesn't survive the battle to retake the Shiganshina District, and he never gets to enter the basement or see the Titans defeated.

But while Erwin's inability to fulfill his goals before his death is upsetting, it's likely that the commander suspected he would perish soon. After all, he leaves the Survey Corps in the hands of Hange ZoĆ« at the beginning of the anime's third season, entrusting her with a future he believes he might not see.

1 His Friendship With Levi Wasn't Always So Strong

Levi Ackerman is one of Erwin's most respected and trusted soldiers, and it becomes increasingly clear that the two have a close bond with one another as the anime progresses. Levi isn't afraid to tell Erwin the truth, even if he's his superior, and Erwin trusts Levi's judgment in dire situations.

But anyone who has read Levi's spin-off manga series, No Regrets, knows that the two didn't always have such strong camaraderie between them. In fact, Erwin initially forces Levi to join the Survey Corps in order to make up for stealing — and Levi hates him for it. It's only after many years working together that the two develop the respect for one another that viewers see during Attack on Titan. 

NEXT: Attack On Titan: 10 Things You Didn't Know About Levi Ackerman

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