Don’t let it ever be said that I don’t listen to you lunatics in the Anime Vice community. When I posted my thoughts on episodes 20 through 24 of Eva, you all demanded I watch the director’s cut versions because they were supposed to be better on every level. Well, I did check them out and I can say that they weren’t better on at least one level - - voice acting. Watching these episodes over again definitely drew my attention to how important it is to find the proper actor for a cartoon. Fans have said that this show has an unusually good dub and I have to agree. Every member of the cast has done a good enough job that I’d really like to see some of their live action work - - although from the looks of some of their IMDB profiles, it seems like a lot of them have work solely in the realm of dubs and a number haven’t even been in any projects in years. That's a shame. Either way, while I think every actor’s done great work, I’ll single out Allison Keith (the voice of Misato) as doing an exceptionally good job. She can convey the broad spectrum of a tough, bubbly and vulnerable so well. The fact that the simple scene with her talking to Pen Pen is one of the most moving here, really speaks to her talents. I’d really like to see more work from her.
But you want me to rag on the guy they got to voice Kaworu here, right? Honestly, I don’t have as much a problem with him. I still prefer the creepy, ghostly monotone of whoever voiced the angel boy in the first go around, but I don’t think this guy is really that inferior. I actually was more miffed about the guy they had voice Gendo in this one. The original voice actor captured that perfect, though elusive, air of an evil superintendent. That is, banality laced with menace in an administrator’s nasally tone. This guy, however, seemed like he could only play one card at once and it never fit.
The number of changes seemed to increase as the episode went along, although I’m sure I’m missing a lot of significant stuff in episode 21. Anyway, to comment on the differences…
- Rei’s death is about ten times more interesting in the director’s cut, which is saying something because her nuclear suicide was quite involving, as is. The fact that that “wall of souls” erupts in her flesh before the angel consumes her completely changes the scene significantly, and it’s far freakier.
- Maybe the insinuation is less pronounced, but I still think it’s very easy to presume that Misato kills Kaji. She gets her gun back from Nerv, says “I know what I need to do” or something, and then Kaji gets shot by some unknown familiar off-screen. I get that it wasn’t her, now, but it’s a very easy mistake to make.
- That scene where Misato’s spying on Kaworu’s invisible Seele conference and then he notices her, from miles away, was five kinds of creepy. This heavier implication of him working for Seele certainly raises a lot more questions, though. My friend shared an interesting observation that he’s supposed to be formed from the angel’s “mind rape” of Asuka and is thus construed as a “perfect” version of her (along with embodying Adam.) That explains how he sinks perfectly with Unit-02 and how he’s comfortable voicing aloud the feelings she harbors secretly.
- By the way, I don’t know if Asuka’s made to be any more sympathetic now, with the additional material. We just seemed to get more looks at her freaky hallucinations and that hanging doll. I saw a very brief snippet of her kiss with Shinji, but I didn’t see anything letting on that she’s hurt that he didn’t kiss her back.
- Still not quite sure what happened to Yui in the experiment, even though I’ve got a better sense of her motivations. I did think it was funny that they made a point to show that Ritsuko had the same hair color as her mother before she (presumably) dyed it blond.
Whoa… this ran a lot longer than usual. I think this is a sign that I’m in too deep. Next thing you know, I’ll be stripping naked and wearing a tin foil hat!