Sunday, November 29, 2009

Evangelion Rebuild 1.0

Hello, Space Monkies.

It seems we finally have a few readers now. Two followers, many more than I ever imagined that I would get. Glad to see I'm not just shouting pointlessly into the uncaring oblivion of the universe.

Now here's something I'm sure you'll like: my thoughts on the brand spanking new Evangelion movie!

I made sure I got this movie pretty much the second it come on DVD on Netflix two weeks ago. It was a rent, not a buy, for two reasons: 1) I'm a poor beggar, and 2) I'll just wait for the super special box set of all four Evangelion Rebuild movies when they all come out. It will definitely look a lot nicer, and maybe I'll get a T-shirt or toy as an extra. That's a good tip: for movie series or TV shows, always wait for the Complete Box Set. Now this would have been my very first post, and in fact I planned on it being so, but I screwed up and review two boring forgettable movies first. My apologies, Space Monkies. I'll be sure to hit myself as punishment.


Oww... There we go.

Evangelion is probably my favorite Japanese cartoon out of all the at least a dozen decent anime shows out there. I'm rounding down to be safe, since most anime is actually really silly and downright embarrassing when you get to looking at it really closely. Back in early High School I was really into this show, and I still have a poster of the movie ending of the series, "End of Evangelion" up in my room. Really, if you haven't watched that show already, you're missing out of one of the darkest, and most unique stories I've ever seen. Its the story of a boy and his giant robot, the Evangelion, and how he fights freaky monsters in a world filled with pseudo-Christian imagery while going slowly insane. Everybody is either a robot or so filled with deep seated psychological issues that you'd think you fell into Freud's wet dream. And that's when things make sense, and the show has lots of little psycho freak-out existentialist moments where you're not sure if its a dream, a hallucination, or maybe the director is just fucking with you. Maybe if you watch the movie about fifteen times you'll finally get it. Maybe not. Another one of my favorite animes, "FLCL" is like too, only a LOT lighter and more silly. I liked this show so much that I nicknamed my sister "Asuka" whenever she got particularly selfish.

And for some reason "Evangelion" is close to my heart and yet I absolutely hate David Lynch. Go figure.

That leads up to now, where an anime studio is looking for more money, so has decided to remake the original series and its movie ending with a four-part series called "Evangelion Rebuild". I guess the ultimate hope this time is to do things right. I was more or less fine with the original product, though it did have a few screw-ups. The last two episodes were complete nonsense, patched-up on the cheap using recycled animation and loads of psychobabble garbage. Also there's a waste-of-time clip show thrown in there too, along with at least one episode that has nothing to do with anything (remember Jet Alone?). I guess it would be nice to see the story pulled together in a more stream-lined package. Four movies is a lot less viewing time than 26 episodes plus a movie. And it will definitely look a lot better too. My Evangelion box set is easily the worst quality DVD I've ever seen.

Of course, if you've been following the Evangelion saga so far, you might have noticed that Evangeliion 1.0 came out two years ago in Japan. Well, it took them THAT LONG to finally import it here! I've been waiting all that time while the importers sit with their fingers up their asses while I get nothing! I suppose I could have gotten it bootleg with subtitles, but I prefer my anime to be in English. I know some of you prefer subtitles, but I don't. Dubbing is the way I first found these cartoons back on Toonami, and dubbing is the way I like it.

And after all that, can we finally get to the issue at hand? Is Eva 1 any good? To that I must say: yes. There we go. Review over.




Hmmm? You want more? Really? Okay, here's more:

Eva 1.0, pretentiously subtitled "You Are (NOT) Alone" is basically a shot-for-shot remake of the first seven episodes of the anime or so. But its not like several anime-movie remakes, which are often just clip shows for an hour and a half, all stolen straight out of the anime. (For example, there's the "Rah Xephon Movie", which is just a compilation of the much better series with a more confusing ending.) This time every shot has been remastered, with extra details that were simply too expensive to fit in back in the 90s. Quite simply, Evangelion has never looked this good. I have to say that whatever scenes or episodes that have been left behind are really not missed at all. It all has been cut down into a surprisingly cohesive narrative.

If I were going to give a few complaints, they would be the same as those as the original series. in the beginning of that series, just not enough is ever explained. Just what the heck are Angels? Aliens? Why are we in Tokyo-3? What the heck happened to Tokyo-2? Can't we get a better explanation as to what Second Impact was? Nearly all of it was thrown into the very end of the story in the original version, and I fear that's what has been done here too. Its just going to alienate new viewers. At the very least they throw us a bone and tell the audience why fighting the Angels is so darn important by revealing the dark secret below NERV.

A few additions got my fanboy side absolutely thrilled, such as Misato's preview of the second movie in the style of the TV show, even including her usual guarantee of "more fanservice" (sadly Evangelion never did deliver as much fanservice as was promised). Plus everybody's favorite little grey-haired alien-boy, Kaworu makes a foreboding cameo at the very end of the movie on the Moon, promising a mysterious twist to this story.

So if you enjoyed the original story or have just always been intrigued about what the heck all the fuss about Evangelion was anyway, I'd give this a view. We'll see in the future if these movies can stay this good. I hear that 2.0 makes some radical changes to the storyline, and I'm very interested to see what direction this Rebuild is going to take. Hopefully its going to be just as good, if not better than the original. I'd check it out. Though if you hate anime, you're not going to like this one either. Otherwise, this was a lot of fun.

I'll be certain to include my thoughts on the next three movies when they're finally out in English. Keep reading! Tell your friends, I'd love more interest here.

Fanwank Corner: For you Eva fans, I have a little theory about these movies that I'd like to share. I notice that the very first shot of this movie happens to be the same as the last shot of "End of Evangelion": a beach on a blood-red sea. For some reason the oceans happen to be red in this movie. Perhaps this isn't so much a remake as a sequel to the original. Kaworu, in his seen mentions an interest in Shinji "so its the Third One again", almost as if he's met him already. There's a blood stain on the Moon. Perhaps it came from the time that Lilith-Rei's head burst open during Instrumentality. That was a Hell of a lot of blood. Could I possibly be right? We'll just have to keep on watching these movies to see.


  1. Well I'll be reading future blogs from now on but since I only JUST saw the first episode of Evangelion like a week ago, I'm not reading in the hope I don't get spoiled. Good luck, and lol you cheap bastard, advertising your blog at the one place you supposedly disowned with pride. xD I like that lol.


  2. I would advertise in other places, but its not like I ever hung out there, now did I? Anyway, this really has nothing to do with my former wiki. I've evolved beyond it to a higher plane of existence.

    ..................Okay, I'm full of it. But I got to get the word out somehow, right?

  3. I LOVE your sequel theory. I've seen the movie, and the fact that it's a sequel makes some since. Maybe (Weird ass thought) it's a 10 minute sequel, with the other hour and a half being a giant flashback.

    Oh, EVA, you always knew how to fuck with my mind......

  4. I'm following you too, but i don't have or want blogger(i have my own WordPress installation on my site), i'm following you by RSS instead.

    And i guess i'm not the only one to do that either...
    You should check FeedBurner or something to see how many people follows you on RSS if you don't already

  5. I just tried that FeedBurner thing (I've never heard of it before now, so thanks for telling me.) Their response: "Your feed is so new we're having trouble with the bubble wrap." I doubt I've had more than 100 views anyway.