So recently, a friend of mine was telling me to watch Evangelion, an anime that revolutionize and influences various subsequent works. Unfortunately after watching the entire animated series, not including the animated films, I have to say that I do not share the same enthusiasm as my friend.
The general idea is that during the “future”, which is the year 2000 (aka the past), there are giant beings called Angels that invade the Earth. And it was up to the protagonist, 14-year old Ikari Shinji as well as several other children, to pilot another giant mech known as Evangelion, or Eva, to stop those Angels. However, the Angels’ intentions are unclear, despite the fact that they cause “Impacts”, which are catastrophe similar in scale to a nuclear meltdown.
First of all, I want to note that it has become ridiculous how so many mecha series choose to use a teenager as the protagonist. Adults in these series somehow always takes a backseat. Actually come to think of it, almost 90% of anime series uses teenagers as protagonists!! The only possible explanation I can come up with so far is that producers are trying to appeal to the younger crowd. Having said that, this has become too much of a cliché.
The next thing to note is that this anime series started out great even though the elements are a bit dated. The mecha action is actually decent in my opinion. The anime series is also mixed with decent amount of psychoanalysis concerning the burden of piloting Eva, persona and self-identity, and attempts to deal with the past. So all in all, I do enjoy the first half of the series.
Unfortunately, the second half of the series is nothing like the first half. The plot becomes more confusing by the episode, to the points that it seems like they are simply throwing out ideas without trying to make them coherent. There is very little explanations or backgrounds, such as the organizations of Nerv and Seele and their intentions. Furthermore, the character development is just plain frustrating. I can kind of understand why the protagonist keeps relapsing back to the introverted personality. However, I am not sure why Touji becomes moody later in the series. The last couple of episodes are just god awful. It is rather obvious that the production has no more budget for graphics and resorted to just random hand drawings and flashes. Meanwhile the last episode does not even give me the satisfaction of an ending at all. In fact, it is basically a “to be continued”. In fact, it is so bad that my head literally just hurts trying to comprehend what I just saw. And if the animated movies holds the ending of the series, I am probably not going to bother watching it.
The fact that they are throwing out sci-fi jargons does not help the series either. This can be seen in creating GUI and somehow use it to track an IP address in CSI. Mitosis can grow cell cultures, sure, but it’s literally impossible to use it to explain regenerating an arm, let alone an arm of an armored giant. Just because you say the vocab, does not mean that you know what it means…
In conclusion, though there are several elements that may be intriguing, I’d rather use those time watching other reruns.
- Plot: B for the first half of the series, F for the second half
- Graphics: B for the first half, C for most of the second half, F for the last two episode
- Rewatch: F (Hell no!!)
- Music: C (What can I say, it’s dated)
- Overall value: C- (Can’t really see what the buzz is about…)