Well, that had to be the most OMINOUS solo game of pick-up basketball ever committed to film. There was just such a serious underscore to Toji shooting some hoops - - it was as if his free throws held the fate of Tokyo-3 entire! He hasn’t even suited up into his Eva yet and the “fourth child” is already got the world in his hands. Ha! And yeah, even though they never come out and say he’s the newest Eva pilot here, it was four kinds of obvious that he is. That’s got to be the biggest slap in the face for Shinji (even bigger than red palm Rei left on his cheek earlier). The kid who bullied you for not piloting your Eva to his satisfaction is now going to be joining your team? Sheesh… that’s a twist I wasn’t expecting. They still haven’t explained what the rhyme or reason is to these kids selection, either. I remember somebody saying that there was some surprise to explain the illogic of entrusting these walking WMD’s to 16-year-olds, but I’ve yet to see it.
Going back to what I was saying about the underscore earlier, I have to say that the soundtrack to this series is really growing on me. Keep in mind that my own point of reference for long-form anime shows so far is VISION OF ESCAFLOWNE. While I don’t think this score is necessarily as tuneful as ESCAFLOWNE’s (that is, I can’t really hum along to as I could to, say, Falkan’s theme) it certainly has a muscularity that I appreciate. The drums and highly-strung strings ratchet up the sense of tension and danger when called for - - really making it seem like the world’s about to end. And I suppose that fits the tone of this versus ESCAFLOWNE. EVANGELION feels a lot more aggressive and muscular by comparison.
Some discussion regarding dubbing arose over my review of the last episode. I’ll confess that I’ve been watching this dubbed the whole time. That’s really continuing from my watching of FLCL dubbed. I tried to watch it subbed, but the dialogue ran so fast that it was truly too hard to keep up. I switched to the dubbed version out of necessity. But I don’t know - - while I did watch ESCAFLOWNE subbed, I’ve preferred to watch features like AKIRA and PRINCESS MONONOKE dubbed. I think it’s because dialogue frequently runs so fast in these (it’s the realm of speedlines, after all) that having to read the dialogue, rather than hearing it, draws me out of the experience.
Anyway, that’s my take… I’m curious to hear all of yours. I know anime fans can be very passionate about their preferences in the dubbed/subbed divide. Where do you lunatics in the Anime Vice community stand?