Neon Genesis Evangelion Sucks

April 5, 2008 at 8:19 am (Anime, Entertainment, Misc, Movies) (, , , , , , , )

“Neon Genesis Evangelion (新世紀エヴァンゲリオン, Shin Seiki Evangerion?), commonly referred to as NGE, Eva, or Evangelion, is a commercially and critically successful, influential and popular Japanese anime that began in October 1995;”

“A titanic and compelling show. The most controversial series ever made. The greatest anime of all time. These are just some of the things you will hear if you mention Evangelion”

” Mere words cannot do Eva justice. Neon Genesis Evangelion is just incredible. I am in asolute awe of its genius and depth. I loved the combination of religion, philosophy, and science fiction. This series stands as the best anime ever.”

“Evangelion is a genius work of storytelling. The way it can make 26 episodes make one great story with the most definite solution to a problem (mankind) I have seen yet, makes me feel really happy inside.”

“If u had to pick among all of the Japanese anime ever created… Neon Genesis Evangelion has to be one of, if not THE most influential animes ever created. “

These are just some of the things people are saying about NGE on the net. Its basically a global worship of it. And I can go on until tomorrow finding quotes.

It baffles me though. Why??? Well, I think I qualify as an almost veteran-level Otaku now.  Just some of what I’ve seen and continue to follow include : 

  • Sailor Moon
  • Dragonball/Z/GT
  • Inuyasha
  • Cowboy Bebop
  • Jigoku Shoujo
  • Death Note
  • Naruto/Shipuuden
  • Fooly Cooly
  • Rurouni Kenshin
  • Bleach
  • Yu Yu Hakusho
  • Elfen Lied
  • Tokyo Majin
  • Gundam Wing
  • G Gundam and..over the Carnival holidays..Neon Genesis Evangelion

So I’m no n00b. However, I’m yet to see what’s the big deal about NGE. It isn’t deserving of most of the worship of anime fans as its been subjected to, and for crying out loud, stop saying its the work of a genius.

I really did try to like NGE, after having read some of the above comments about it. But I tried and failed, as not only does NGE not live up to its hype, but I think it SUCKED, to the point of, after watching all 26 episodes and the movies, being angry for wasting approximately 1000 minutes of my time.

NGE is a mishmash of religious symbols with inexplicable, very loose or even non-existent connections to the actual storyline, bundled together with a cast of some sick, seemingly sociopathic and weird characters, plus a large dose of confusing science fiction. And I’m not just deducing all this based on the fact that after much thought, research and second viewings of episodes that I still don’t understand what the fuck most of what was injected into the story means as it was said : 

Because Christianity is an uncommon religion in Japan we thought it would be mysterious. None of the staff who worked on Eva are Christians. There is no actual Christian meaning to the show, we just thought the visual symbols of Christianity look cool.

Kazuya Tsurumaki, Assistant Director of Neon Genesis Evangelion


“Evangelion is like a puzzle, you know. Any person can see it and give his/her own answer. In other words, we’re offering viewers to think by themselves, so that each person can imagine his/her own world. We will never offer the answers, even in the theatrical version. As for any Evangelion viewers, they may expect us to provide the ‘all-about Eva’ manuals, but there is no such thing. Don’t expect to get answers by someone. Don’t expect to be catered to all the time. We all have to find our own answers.” 
Hideaki Anno, Director of Neon Genesis Evangelion 

Not that I needed to find quotes from the people that actually thought up NGE to support my opinion, but wow. “Find our own answers”?  Sounds like lecturers who come to class, don’t do anything remotely relevant to the actual course they’re lecturing for, and then when students complain they say that they’re not into spoonfeeding.

Calling evil robots names of angels from in the Bible, including the scene of a 14 year old masterbating over an unconscious girl and having vague endings isn’t “classic” to me. The Human Instrumentality Project is a bunch of artsy-fartsy bullshit that makes no sense to anyone not fond of thinking in the extreme abstract. Anno urges us to find our own answers because he himself has no answers for the very thing he created. Viewers on the other hand see NGE, not understand half of it, and thus equate this misunderstanding and vagueness to a great work of art. I appreciate the fact that the characters were complex, but who really cares? Is this a soap opera? Is it really a selling point to say that they’ve taken an extraordinary amount of screen time delving deep into the psyche of….animated characters? The protaganist, Shinji Ikari, is as annoying as they come. In the final episode/movie, he behaves like such an absolute pussy that it was painful to continue watching.

Its stated on Wikipedia that

“Hideaki Anno, the director of the anime series, had suffered from clinical depression prior to creating the series, and the psychological aspects of the show are based on the director’s own experiences with overcoming this illness.

Um, I guess that meant he just injected his own crazy talk he used to mumble to himself when he was depressed or high into the dialogue after they ran out of money towards the end of the series (“There were serious budget and schedule restraints in the later episodes of the series”) and needed something to “to help distinguish”  EVA from…well other anime that make sense. Interestingly, the themes of the last several episodes reflect the preceding sentence.

 All in all, Neon Genesis Evangelion is a bunch of bullshit, on a level as verbose as its title, designed to wow us into thinking it should be placed on a high pedestal over other anime as one of outstanding artistic integrity, when in fact its just an average mecha anime, thinly veiled with nonsensical messages pulled out of Psychology textbooks and Religious texts, injected with the “personal experiences” of its director, at an attempt of making it much more that it actually is.

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