What the F@#$ Did Just Watch?!?! EVANGELION Episode #16

Topic started by No_name_here on May 2, 2010. Last post by hitsusatsu11 4 years, 4 months ago.
Post by No_name_here (856 posts) See mini bio Level 11
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I’m going to have to presume that a lot must have happened off screen, but I was little… confused by how light the opening of this episode was.

“But, Tom,” you exclaim, “EVA’s full of comedy to balance all the dramatic pathos and philosophical exploration!”

Yes, I understand that. I’m just wondering what happened between the sitcom hijinks at the opening of this episode and the shocking cliffhanger about the captive angel at the end of the last one. Did Misato say, “Oh… that’s kind of weird, but I’ve got to go do my laundry, now. I’ll take care of this crucified angel next week.” Actually, considering her odd nonchalant, off-the-cuff statement about Shinji’s capture in this episode, I suppose that wouldn’t be… too out of character. So yeah, it’s a genuinely moving scene when Shinji escapes and she, in tears, rips open his escape hatch to hug him and say how relieved she is that he’s alive. But what’s up with her little statement when he gets captured in the first place?

“Oh, we’ll have to deal with that whenever he gets back.”

Sure, you’ve got to put some confidence in the kid, but isn’t that kind of like saying you’ll do something with a dead character whenever they get resurrected?

That being said, I was again impressed by the gimmick of the angel in this episode. Every time I think I’ve seen the last rabbit Gainax can pull out of the magic hat, I end up being surprised. You know, a lot of people use comparisons to video games out of derision… but I think it’s a compliment in this case. There was a cool dream logic to the reversal of the relationship between shadow and object, here, and how exactly NERV figures out how to attack it. It reminded me of an SNK boss battle in that respect. Also, the visual of Asuka’s Eva scrambling up the side of skyscraper to evade that shadow was oddly humorous, too. Again, something you just don’t see in other Sentai shows.

Forgive me for forgetting who, but one of you told me to watch out for this episode since it was evocative of the original SOLARIS. I actually was reminded of Michael Crichton’s SPHERE (the novel, which was also inspired by SOLARIS). That similarly had a scene with an alien using echoes of a person’s personality to communicate with him. I liked the experimental film quality to that trippy section, with Shinji’s dialogue being represented by vertical control tape, while the Angel’s was horizontal and then, the impression of Asukua consciousness was represented with a lightning-bolt diagonal. I get the feeling this is just the start of the kind challenging existential scenes I’ve been warned lurk in the finale.

-- Tom Pinchuk is the writer of UNIMAGINABLE for Arcana Comics and HYBRID BASTARDS! for Archaia. Pre-order the HYBRID BASTARDS! hardcover now on Amazon.com.

Post by Liminality (173 posts) See mini bio Level 5
I really enjoy to read these articles.
 
Also I feel like the comments below in previous episodes are spoiling too much.
Post by hitsusatsu11 (10,747 posts) See mini bio Level 20
 One of my favorite episodes, love the design for the angel Leliel, being a "sea of dirac" entity. The fact that the orb in the sky is the actual shadow and the obvious shadow is the true angel is a stroke of genius by gainax.  
 
The mind journey shinji go's on in what i like to think of as the "mind rape bus" is very intelligent and a clear concise physco analyse. We now start to see that perhaps the angels are not trying to attack per se but make contact, and understand humanity (this will be seen later with rei) and by extension their own purpose and reason for existence. In the end are the angels really only searching for the same things the human characters are? Only expressing their searchings through ways unfathomable to humankind?  And will self realization by the angels lead to the destruction of mankind? Time will tell. 
 
here is shinji's introspective journey, facing himself through the angel Leliel 
 
  
  
 
The way unit 01 breaks free from the sea of dirac is very interesting, at 2:45 onward.  
Note while 01 was absorbed into the actual angel, he breaks free out of the shadow (which is the orb), hmm... 
 
  
 
 
As for misato's “Oh, we’ll have to deal with that whenever he gets back.”    Statement, it is her not being able to cope with whats going on, (she can not face the possibility of shinji's death) she has been doing this in different ways all her life, after second impact she would not utter a word for a long time. It shows that she does not want to face the world as it is and has as much complex emotional and physiological issues as the pilots do.  
 
The end of this episode also has massive Freudian tones- the way shinji escapes from the orb can be seen as a child birthing from a womb, as well as his interactions with misato. 
Post by FoxxFireArt (2,643 posts) See mini bio Level 25
Moderator
At times, it really seems like the world is out to crush any bit of happiness Shinji may feel.
Post by ReVolutionOfEvangelion (102 posts) See mini bio Level 3
If you check back, *I* am the one who said it was like Solaris.  
 
Its the Angel trying to communicate but its mind is so "alien" it can only do so by showing Shinji a reflection of his inner thoughts, communicating with echoes of his own memories. 
 
Without being too spoilery, there's another point in episode 23 where an Angel does this, but instead of just showing flashes of the pilot's memory, it is actually capable of communicating in words and has a real "running conversation" with the pilot.
 
When we said "the production quality drops, but they found ways around it" this is what we meant:  they'd do long stretches artfully using things like "horizontal lines and montage sequences during dreams" so they wouldn't have to use too much animation.  "Necessity is the mother of invention", so they were able to just cleverly work around their budget limitations.  Of course, the money completely ran out by the final 2 episodes, and episodes 21-24 had so many problems they went back and redid them...but I'll discuss this more again around episode 20....
 
In case I haven't made this clear before Mr. Pinchuck:  ***The Angels aren't the real bad guys, Seele is.***
 
As you saw in episode 10, no one is really "sending" the Angels;  they hatch from Angel eggs.  There is no "Angel mothership floating behind the Moon" as it were.  Their origins are addressed (sort of) in episode 21.

“Oh, we’ll have to deal with that whenever he gets back.”

  Um...Tom...and Hitsu.....no...Misato doesn't deliver this line whole-heartedly as if she's actively planning to "punish" Shinji;  mounting evidence is saying that they can't rescue him, so to look encouraging in front of Asuka and Rei, she waveringly says "well....*when he gets back*, yeah we'll punish him"....as if clinging to the idea that he IS coming back even though it looks like he won't.
 
Uh....this was actually very clear in the way the line was delivered in the English dub;  are you listening to the English dub when you watch the show or the Japanese audio?  
 
Because frequently in the series, lines are delivered sarcastically or with a nuanced shade of meaning, and if you're just reading raw text you wouldn't realize that Misato is just trying to sound re-assuring that Shinji will come back. 
 
Misato's not "in denial"; you can tell from the way the line is delivered that she knows her hopeful statement sounds incredibly naive, but she's saying it to try to provide some encouragement.
 
Ultimately half of your review got spent discussing this line, which would actually have been completely clear in the English dub.
 
 Lastly:  "Existential" is a buzzword that gets thrown around a lot.  While Eva does "confront" Existentialism, it is ultimately a rejection of it. 
Post by No_name_here (856 posts) See mini bio Level 11
Staff
@hitsusatsu11: I'll check out those videos once I get to the end.  I did pick up on the birth symbolism for the Shinji's exit, though. Very Freudian.
Post by hitsusatsu11 (10,747 posts) See mini bio Level 20
@ReVolutionOfEvangelion said:
"
  Um...Tom...and Hitsu.....no...Misato doesn't deliver this line whole-heartedly as if she's actively planning to "punish" Shinji;  mounting evidence is saying that they can't rescue him, so to look encouraging in front of Asuka and Rei, she waveringly says "well....*when he gets back*, yeah we'll punish him"....as if clinging to the idea that he IS coming back even though it looks like he won't.    
 
Well i suppose thats your interpretation, i still say it is because she can't cope with it, she has been doing things like all her life like when she was mute post second impact. 
Rei is the last person who would need encouragement, she is a realist about death and the danger involved in missions. 
Post by ReVolutionOfEvangelion (102 posts) See mini bio Level 3
@hitsusatsu11:  ...that's not an "interpretation" -- listen to it in English. 
Post by hitsusatsu11 (10,747 posts) See mini bio Level 20
@ReVolutionOfEvangelion: i've listened to it in both english and jap. She doesn't deliver the line wholeheartedly because she herself does't really believe it, she just can't cope with the reality of it, this is corroborated when she breaks down when he is safe. 
Post by Whiskeyjack (111 posts) See mini bio Level 19
As soon as the English dub enters the equation you've got all sorts of new variables to deal with. The ADR Director and the Voice Actor both suddenly have input into the meaning of the lines.
Post by hitsusatsu11 (10,747 posts) See mini bio Level 20
@Whiskeyjack: good ol' amanda winn lee and crew eh? 
Post by ReVolutionOfEvangelion (102 posts) See mini bio Level 3
@hitsusatsu11:  ...in that case, we've reduced it to the point that "she can't cope with reality" and "she's trying to be encouraging in the face of bad odds" are of at least equal possibility; before you were treating it as a foregone conclusion;
 
 
As for the English dub:   according to Tiffany Grant when I spoke to her three weeks ago, Evangelion was one of the most heavily scrutinized English dubs ever made:  Gainax was looking over their shoulder all the time, sending back script copies filled with red ink corrections.
Post by hitsusatsu11 (10,747 posts) See mini bio Level 20
@ReVolutionOfEvangelion said:

" @hitsusatsu11:  ...in that case, we've reduced it to the point that "she can't cope with reality" and "she's trying to be encouraging in the face of bad odds" are of at least equal possibility; before you were treating it as a foregone conclusion;  

No your right, she is trying to be encouraging, more to herself though than to someone like rei (who is a realist about death and missions) which i think go's hand in hand with not wanting to cope, ie. giving herself false hope.(even if deep down she knows its unlikely shinji will live)
 
Also thats really cool you got to talk to tiffany grant, the eva dub is top notch. 
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