Levi Ackerman is one of the most popular characters from the Attack on Titan series. He is the handsome squad captain of the Survey Corps. He served as the mentor figure to Eren and his friends. He is an aloof and quite an intimidating character, but has the best interests of humanity at heart. There is one quirk that fans could not seem to get enough of: his obsession with cleaning.
Levi is a clean freak. He likes to clean like nobody else. It is quite humorous to imagine Levi, a solider experienced in war who seemed all tough, would be into something domestic as cleaning. He disliked even the slightest dirt in his surroundings. He even instructed his soldiers to clean up too.
So why is Levi obsessed with cleaning? We’ll be able to give you an answer in this article! It has something to do with his childhood.
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He Was Born in the Underground
In Season 3, we were able to find out Levi’s backstory. This is because his uncle Kenny Ackerman made an appearance. There was a flashback with Kenny and un unnamed Ackerman relative conversing. Kenny made mention of his sister, Kuchel, who is working in the Underground.
The Underground is a city located underneath the walled cities of Paradis Island. People who live here are usually poor and cannot afford residences on the surface. Since the Ackermans got persecuted by the government, it is no surprise that some of them went to the Underground.
Kenny said that Kuchel got pregnant while working at a brothel. Kenny wanted her to get rid of the baby, but she did not listen. Kuchel’s child is none other than Levi himself. She gave birth to Levi presumably in the brothel where she’s working. People in the Underground do not have access to decent hospitals on the surface.
Raised in the Brothel
Levi spent his early childhood years in the brothel. Considering that it is located in the Underground, the brothel is not in the best state. We have seen this more in Season 3, where Kenny visited Kuchel. The room Kuchel and Levi were in looked dingy and dirty.
It could be because Kuchel had died at that time, and there was no one who could clean the room. Even Levi himself looked filthy and was severely malnourished. Aside from this, the brothel is also not a suitable place for a child to grow up in, as it can be unsanitary as it is in the Underground.
He Longed to Have a Clean Home
He spent his early years in a dingy brothel, as well as in an increasingly filthy environment when his mother died. No wonder he had a strong desire to have clean surroundings. It can also be possible that the dirt and filth reminded him of his difficult childhood years. It may have reminded him of his mother dying and the room getting filthier. The feeling of grief and helplessness inside of him is a memory he does not want to relive again.
It was confirmed by Hajime Isayama in an interview back in 2014 that Levi’s experience with growing up in a dirty environment has resulted in his desire to be clean.
Levi’s Cleanliness Makes Him Unique
Now that we have answered Levi’s obsession with cleaning, it is definitely one of his traits that made him stand out. It can be interesting that a soldier of his caliber gets peeved even in the slightest dirt, as seen when he was wiping blood off his weapon in the middle of the battlefield.
Despite Levi’s cleanliness, he did not hesitate touching a comrade’s bloody hand as he bade farewell. His loyalty and care for his comrades are stronger than his desire to stay spotlessly clean.
So, his cleanliness is not annoying as he will touch dirt if it is necessary. It is not something heavily imposed in the series. Rather, it is just a quirk of his that comes naturally and ultimately makes him more endearing.
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