I'm going to speak total sacrilege here
Having just watched Neon Genesis Evangelion on Netflix, including The End of Evangelion, I have come to this conclusion:
This anime comes nowhere near deserving the level of reverence and hype it receives.
Now that I've made that statement, let me explain why I feel that way.
From the start, the anime seems generally unfocused. There seems to be a lack of clarity as to who the antagonist actually is. While the sudden shift of antagonist in Darling in the Franxx was unexpected and jarring, it was explained in a way that at least made sense. Can't say that here.
Character development was somewhere between lacking and non-existent. I didn't feel any sense of growth in most of the main characters. Some of the secondary characters seemed to have growth, but it seemed rather contrived.
Plot? I've seen Swiss cheese with fewer holes in it. It's like the author started with a decent idea, but had no idea how to flesh it out. I will state that I can clearly see why the entire fan base was up in arms over the original ending. Seriously, What the heck was the animation company thinking? Not that I found the movie that much more satisfying. At least we got the massive battle that was hinted at, then ignored in the original ending.
Having seen "the legendary series", I must confess that I think Darling in the Franxx got unfairly compared to Neon Genesis Evangelion. Of the two, Franxx is the better written and produced anime, in spite of some rather glaring flaws. Evangelion is just a jumbled mess, as the continuing efforts to "revise" it show. After all, you don't see people trying to rewrite Akira, do you?
Is it a new dub & did Netflix bork it perhaps?
Or is it a shitload of rose coloured glasses for those of us who saw it when it first came out?
I watched Eva long ago and it was the show that almost made me swear off anime for all time.
I think you pretty much have the group that worships it and shouts down anybody that would DARE to disagree that it isn't perfect.
Then you have everyone else that says it was OK and those of us that hated it.
I don't think it has aged very well either. I tried to re-watch a little of it a few years ago and it was even worse than i remember. I even tried the "new" movies.
I also know a couple people that like it and even they agree that the guy that wrote it had to be on drugs when he did.
It’s complete trash, I finally got around to watching it after many years as an anime fan.
I was absolutely stunned by the hype it gets, I just couldn’t understand what everyone else was watching, but ho hum to each their own I guess.
I hadn’t seen it before it’s recent release on Netflix. I see where you’re coming from. It’s a mess, but I enjoyed it. It’s flaws are readily apparent, plot holes, cliche character traits, mind screw weirdness. So many other series examined some of the same themes, better. So many other series have similar characters but portrayed better, in such a way that it is easier for me to empathize with them.
I had to remind myself that NGE did these things first. It establishes whole types of characters and plot lines and even jokes that are part and parcel of anime/ manga/ LN culture. The red headed twin tailed tsundere the emotionless girl with blue hair, the big sister that loves her beer (and the way she drinks it) on and on so many tropes that are common now we’re created on NGE (or were first popularized there)
I agree, it doesn’t live up to the hype, but as a pioneering work of art, and cultural icon it deserves its “props”
Rewatch Star Wars with a critical eye (episode IV, the original) I could offer many of the same criticisms, plot weak, characters cliche, (lifted wholesale from spaghetti westerns and The Seven Samurai)
You want to see a good mecha anime go watch Eureka Seven.
@smashman42 I watched it subbed.
@jon-mitchell In contrast, I would point out that George Lucas admits that that was his inspiration.
I remember watching it years ago and I cannot recall much of it, so to me it was neither to bad nor to good. But I also don't understand the hype.
There are multiple versions of the ending, so the level of understanding of the ending can vary a bit by which you watched. Having no idea which version(s) Netflix is hosting, I can't say much. Episodes 21 and later were replaced by a "director's cut" at some point, which had a lot of changes. And then there were the movies. And the new movies (still waiting for 4.44 to be released, completing the current version).
Yes, I have the whole collection, and have watched it, both in dub and sub format. No, I don't champion it being watched, because it isn't that great an example of what anime can be.
I watched it a few years ago so probably can't appreciate how original it was when it first came out as I've grown up with shows inspired by it and that copied various elements of it. It came across as something of an entertaining mess that wasn't as intellectual as it pretended to be.
Yeah that show is really overated, it's not bad, personaly I like the relationship between Shinji and Asuka, seeing them interact is quite fun.
But most fights were kinda boring since thzy were won thank to plot convenience (I'm looking at you berserk mode) and the whole plot was confusing for no good reasons.
Also the AI was quite funny, always giving bullshit probabilitys which always turn out to be wrong yet it has the right to self destruct the base.
@raitoiro Shinji and Asuka were nails on a chalkboard, both singularly and collectively. An even more laughable point is referring to the friction between Asuka and Rei(?) as a waifu war. Asuka got along with no-one, Rei is a cardboard cutout of a character, and neither one of them seem to have the slightest romantic attraction to Shinji.
I watched it back when it was first being released (as it was being released). It started off pretty awesome (for the time it was created) but progressively got more and more pointless as time went on. I haven't had any interest in rewatching it and I haven't had any interest in watching the new remake movies.
I think critic types like it mostly because of the weirdness. The thing you always have to realize abouts critic types is they have been numbed to normal stuff from overexposure -- so, much like a drug addict, they need to keep escalating the intensity of their "fix" to even get back to the simple level of "enjoyment"... everything else leaves them disappointed and unfulfilled.
Some people make the mistake of thinking of this numbing as some sort of sophistication, when in reality it is mostly just jaded cynicism and a form of fetishization of "novelty".
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Yup, Evangelion is nonsensical trash. People liked it because they had a massive hard on for Asuka.
I watched it a few years ago so probably can't appreciate how original it was when it first came out as I've grown up with shows inspired by it and that copied various elements of it.
As someone who watched Eva when it was originally released... yes, that's pretty much it. It was a piece of its time, and so was the reaction to it. Eva pioneered many of the archetypes we see today, as another post above mentioned, but that's a relatively minor part.
Its major impact was the way it subverted so many genre expectations - a giant robot show where the 'robots' were actually horrifying monsters; young teen pilots who weren't noble heroes, but were really messed up; the amount of psychological damage across the cast; the world organization dedicated to fighting off invaders was riddled with conspiracies and plots... these were things that weren't part of the anime landscape at the time.
It came across as something of an entertaining mess that wasn't as intellectual as it pretended to be.
Yeah. It tossed out a lot of concepts as window dressing that in the end were... well, window dressing.
@cimmadif mostly for depression as a result of the stress of producing Nadia of the Blue Water.
I like Evangelion for what it is. But if I have to choose between Evangelion and Gundam, I'd pick Gundam. If I have to choose between Evangelion and Eureka Seven, I'd pick Eureka Seven. But it's hard to deny how something about Evangelion just sticks in my mind.
I think Evangelion's biggest draw is how it can make people feel things just by looking at it and immediately wonder WTF is this. I'd REALLY like it if it had stuck with its original idea of a mecha anime that resembles Ideon. (I wanna see the ANIMA novels animated!) I'm also not really a fan of the endings, although I understand why they made it that way. (The ending I can stomach the most is the ending of the manga version.)
I'm still interested in the Rebuild movies, but the change in the story has dashed all hopes for me in liking it.
While I don't think Evangelion is the best thing ever, it is definitely a series that had a good deal of impact. The ending of the anime felt awkward and from what I understand, really wasn't how the ending was supposed to be.
It seemed fairly clear (to me) who the antagonists were. It didn't exactly hide who the antagonists were, each antagonist was very clear (again, to me) that they would be as such when they showed up.
As far as character development goes, there was very minor development for the most part, but there was some.
Plot holes, there definitely were some things where they could have explained it better.
Rei is still the best anime girl though
Whether Franxx or Evangelion is better, I can't really say. I liked both, but Evangelion had a bigger impact on the industry. That is really what truly makes it legendary. Comparing it to modern series just doesn't work as well because what made Evangelion so great was not the plot or character development or such, but the fact that it was so different from most other anime of the time that it had a powerful impact on the industry.
I watched it several years ago, but didn't leave a lasting impression. I found the first part interesting, but as it progressed it felt like it lost what it wanted to achieve and in the end it didn't know what it was about anymore.
Some find it fun to look for philosophical answers to what the director wanted to convey, but to me he simply lost the way or didn't have enough episodes to tell the whole story (which is probably not true given that they made different endings too).
I'll watch 3+1 to complete the story, but I'm not hyped at all given the previous endings.
As others have mentioned, there are better mechas out there; Fafner would probably come close with themes and stuff.
Maybe if I watched EVA at the time it came out I might have had a different opinion.