Gendo could be seen as the ultimate chessmaster, with almost every move going according to plan.
xanderkh wrote:You guys already know my answer by now, if there's any doubt: Shinji Ikari.
This is a kid since day one has been deliberately been manipulated to failure and screwed by nearly every facet of his life to the point of making it a living hell, where he pretty much had the one chance in his entire like to say "FUCK YOU" to everything that screwed him over.
But yet, despite everything that happened to him, it was HE that decided that life was worth living and denied Instrumentality, even if his life up to that point was utter shit. THAT takes a strength that very few people have.
He did come to terms with himself, unlike many other characters. And he made his own decision in the end, which one could say was the right decision.