Mudding the water: back to Gendo-Shinji estrangement

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Postby SaltyJoe » Sun Oct 10, 2010 10:58 am

View Original Postgreatmightypoo wrote:I don't get Shinji relationship with his father. He hates him, yet he wants redemption from his his father. It comes off to me as unrealistic and just weak.

For Shinji, the biggest source of dislike towards Gendo, at least at first, is simply the he wasn't there for him for 10 years. So, when they meet again, Shinji statrs to cultivate the hope that they might fix the gap caused by this decade of estrangement, and have an actual father-son relationship. Pretty naive, but fairly realistic, i think.
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Postby Eva Yojimbo » Mon Oct 11, 2010 5:17 am

View Original Postgreatmightypoo wrote:He hates him, yet he wants redemption from his his father.
"Redemption" is the wrong word. What he wants is love and acceptance from his father. He hates him because he doesn't get this, but hating him doesn't erase the original want.
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Postby greatmightypoo » Tue Oct 12, 2010 9:44 am

View Original PostEva Yojimbo wrote:"Redemption" is the wrong word. What he wants is love and acceptance from his father. He hates him because he doesn't get this, but hating him doesn't erase the original want.


It still comes off as disconcerting for anyone that watches the series their first time.

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Postby AyrYntake » Tue Oct 12, 2010 10:49 am

View Original Postgreatmightypoo wrote:It still comes off as disconcerting for anyone that watches the series their first time.


It's meant to be. :shrug:
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Postby greatmightypoo » Tue Oct 12, 2010 11:39 am

View Original PostAyrYntake wrote:It's meant to be. :shrug:


But is that a good thing? I empathized with Shinji until he comes up with his father issues. His sort of father issues are very unusual and are hard for any person to relate.

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Postby Azathoth » Tue Oct 12, 2010 12:45 pm

View Original Postgreatmightypoo wrote:But is that a good thing? I empathized with Shinji until he comes up with his father issues. His sort of father issues are very unusual and are hard for any person to relate.


It's hard for you to relate to a desire to be praised by someone who's normally cold to you? Jeez, I wish I had your life.

Shinji's daddy problems do get a little old when it's all he talks about see the ReShinji bitching thread but honestly, I don't feel that they're particularly difficult to relate to.
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Postby AuraTwilight » Tue Oct 12, 2010 3:09 pm

Because no one in real life has ever been abandoned or neglected by an unloving parent and thus wanted their approval and affection despite also hating them.
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Postby Eva Yojimbo » Tue Oct 12, 2010 9:15 pm

View Original PostAzathoth wrote:It's hard for you to relate to a desire to be praised by someone who's normally cold to you? Jeez, I wish I had your life.
QFT.
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We're all adrift on the stormy seas of Evangelion, desperately trying to gather what flotsam can be snatched from the gale into a somewhat seaworthy interpretation so that we can at last reach the shores of reason and respite. - ObsessiveMathsFreak
Jimbo has posted enough to be considered greater than or equal to everyone, and or synonymous with the concept of 'everyone'. - Muggy
I've seen so many changeful years, / to Earth I am a stranger grown: / I wander in the ways of men, / alike unknowing and unknown: / Unheard, unpitied, unrelieved, / I bear alone my load of care; / For silent, low, on beds of dust, / Lie all that would my sorrows share. - Robert Burns' Lament for James

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Postby Sailor Star Dust » Tue Oct 12, 2010 9:39 pm

View Original PostAuraTwilight wrote:Because no one in real life has ever been abandoned or neglected by an unloving parent and thus wanted their approval and affection despite also hating them.


Indeed. Shinji is a pretty realistic portrayal of people (not just teenagers) in such a family situation. I've dealt with parental neglect in my own life, but not as severe as him.
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Postby Lucretius » Wed Oct 13, 2010 1:56 am

I've always found Shinji's desire for Gendo's approval to be one of the more unconvincing and comic-bookish things about NGE. Is it realistic to build a personal religion around a father who is essentially a complete stranger and constantly gives proofs of his indifference? No, not especially.

It makes for a decent TV arc, though.

He shuddered a bit, remembering the somewhat creepy level of detail Kaji had gone into, while rubbing a watermelon in a disturbingly sexual way.

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Postby Eva Yojimbo » Wed Oct 13, 2010 3:31 am

View Original PostLucretius wrote:Is it realistic to build a personal religion around a father who is essentially a complete stranger and constantly gives proofs of his indifference?
Yes. Ask any psychiatrist.
Cinelogue & Forced Perspective Cinema
^ Writing as Jonathan Henderson ^
We're all adrift on the stormy seas of Evangelion, desperately trying to gather what flotsam can be snatched from the gale into a somewhat seaworthy interpretation so that we can at last reach the shores of reason and respite. - ObsessiveMathsFreak
Jimbo has posted enough to be considered greater than or equal to everyone, and or synonymous with the concept of 'everyone'. - Muggy
I've seen so many changeful years, / to Earth I am a stranger grown: / I wander in the ways of men, / alike unknowing and unknown: / Unheard, unpitied, unrelieved, / I bear alone my load of care; / For silent, low, on beds of dust, / Lie all that would my sorrows share. - Robert Burns' Lament for James

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Postby Lucretius » Wed Oct 13, 2010 3:42 am

View Original PostEva Yojimbo wrote:Yes. Ask any psychiatrist.


NGE is my favorite documentary.

He shuddered a bit, remembering the somewhat creepy level of detail Kaji had gone into, while rubbing a watermelon in a disturbingly sexual way.

Life is a continuous nut-kicking contest where your turn comes last if ever. -majlund

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Postby Eva Yojimbo » Wed Oct 13, 2010 4:52 am

^ Errrr, OK?
Cinelogue & Forced Perspective Cinema
^ Writing as Jonathan Henderson ^
We're all adrift on the stormy seas of Evangelion, desperately trying to gather what flotsam can be snatched from the gale into a somewhat seaworthy interpretation so that we can at last reach the shores of reason and respite. - ObsessiveMathsFreak
Jimbo has posted enough to be considered greater than or equal to everyone, and or synonymous with the concept of 'everyone'. - Muggy
I've seen so many changeful years, / to Earth I am a stranger grown: / I wander in the ways of men, / alike unknowing and unknown: / Unheard, unpitied, unrelieved, / I bear alone my load of care; / For silent, low, on beds of dust, / Lie all that would my sorrows share. - Robert Burns' Lament for James

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Postby AuraTwilight » Wed Oct 13, 2010 3:35 pm

If I can keep seeking the love and acceptance of a mother that pushes me and my wheelchair down stairs, denies me medical care when she's angry, and abandons me in public when I'm having an epileptic fit on the floor, I think Shinji can realistically seek the love of someone who's simply been absent.
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Postby Kendrix » Fri Oct 22, 2010 8:15 pm

If Gendo really didn't give a shit about Shinji, he wouldn't care wether he'd hurt Shinji, be a terrible father or things like that.

The beautiful irony is that he has exactly the same problem as Shinji.
He thought he couldn't do anything right, so he 'did nothing', staying away from ppl so he wouldn't hurt him.
Except Gendo is nearly fifty and just doesn't care anymore about a lot of things. He's tired and hates the world around him, having given up on everything.
Shinji starts developing such an attitude, too ("they can all just die!") but eventually chooses a different path.
Perhaps Gendo used to be just like Shinji.That SDAT-Player used to be his, after all... Then he gave up and just threw it away. Shinji ended up throwing it away as well, realizing that he 'hates the world' as well, but then, Rei and Mari happen...
I'd compare Gendo sending Shinji away to Shinji hinding under his pillow to block out Misato's cries. Both didn't even try because they didn't think they could do anything.

Here's my theory: EVA 01 starts moving, ppl start shouting because she is being absorbed.
Moving Mecha scares little kid, little Shinji 'runs away from father and mother' (ep 20) and hides in a corner/leaves the room.
Afterwards, his Mommy isn't there. Gendo, overcome with his own Grief, isn't able to tell Shinji the harsch truth. So hears others talk about Gendo 'having killed Yui' (ep. 16 and 20). He then says something like "Bring back Mommy!" or "Why did you make Mommy disapear?" which utterly horryfies the already desperate Gendo.
In his helpnessless, he sends the Kid away in the hope that others will do what he cannot do (he left Shinji with a Teacher i.e., a Professional)

If he was as ruthless as ppl make him out to be, he'd fashion Shinji into some ultra loyal super soldier that would go along with his plans without protest. He IS capable to manipulate ppl that way, ans Shinji was very desperate for Gendo's attention.

I'm not saying that what Gendo did was absolutely right, just that he didn't do it out of spite, malice or nonchalance.
Him and Shinji are just two sides of the same Coin and weren't able to reach each other despite the best intentions - that's where the true tragedy lies.

---

And yeah.
There's been a case in the newspapers of a mother who left her children on their own almost starving for weeks, the eldest kid having to care for the rest. The eldest kid finally cracked and told a teacher, but only after a loooooong time of negligence. Why? They still loved that bitch and were afraid of being taken away from her.
Sometimes Kids ARE like that.
Shinji's behavior is pretty realistic.

...and he DOES give up on Gendo after the Bardiel incident, after all...
Still, if you think about it, what other Choices did Gendo have except using the Dummy plug? He TRIED to have the Entry Plug ejected and had no more available EVAs to have it pulled out or stuff...
Shinji wouuld have died and the rest of humanity with him.
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Postby Lucretius » Fri Oct 22, 2010 9:00 pm

View Original PostKendrix wrote:Perhaps Gendo used to be just like Shinji.That SDAT-Player used to be his, after all... Then he gave up and just threw it away. Shinji ended up throwing it away as well, realizing that he 'hates the world' as well, but then, Rei and Mari happen...


No, ReShinji ends up exactly like Gendo--fixated on a single person to the point where he becomes a genocidal asshole. Whether Anno actually realizes this is open for debate, however.

View Original PostKendrix wrote:Sometimes Kids ARE like that.
Shinji's behavior is pretty realistic.

Sorry guys, but "I must become a robot pilot/ race car driver/ Pokemon master/ goldfish breeder so my Dad will love me again!!!111" is still cliched bullshit.

He shuddered a bit, remembering the somewhat creepy level of detail Kaji had gone into, while rubbing a watermelon in a disturbingly sexual way.

Life is a continuous nut-kicking contest where your turn comes last if ever. -majlund

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Postby AuraTwilight » Sat Oct 23, 2010 1:32 pm

Thank you, though, Kendrix, for getting what I was trying to say about Gendo's character.
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Postby LealahLupin3 » Sun Oct 24, 2010 3:48 am

View Original PostLucretius wrote:Sorry guys, but "I must become a robot pilot/ race car driver/ Pokemon master/ goldfish breeder so my Dad will love me again!!!111" is still cliched bullshit.


Cliches become cliches because they happen often enough in reality. It may seem tired and overused to you but many people struggle with Shinji's feels of hating/loving his father every day. It happens a lot. Generally, if something like this doesn't happen to you, you're a pretty lucky person. It's also worth mentioning that yes, while he mainly became a pilot for his father's acceptance, he was starving for ANY type of acknowledgment by that time. It would have been interesting to see exactly how Shinji's teacher raised him and why he feels that he's completely worthless. It seems like if the teacher he was living with raised him decently he wouldn't have had nearly as many problems as he did.

Also note that when Gendo is experiencing Instrumentality he (or Yui, it's been a while) says that he was trying to spare Shinji pain by running away from him. I think he realized that he's a piss-poor father without Yui but instead of confronting his problem and trying to fix it, he runs away.

It would have been very, very interesting to see what kind of father he was when Yui was still around. I got the impression that he did at least care a little for Shinji when Yui was pregnant with him (taking an active roll in naming him, "Is this the kind of world my son will have to live in?") but that he just couldn't cope with having to care for Shinji after she died. It never really occured to me that he could have at least tried for a little while to take care of him before he abandoned him, but it does make a lot of sense. I think he knew good and damn well that Yui would have wanted him to take care of their son and he probably tried for a little while if for no other reason than to honor her memory. But something probably happened (I rather like the theory that Shinji said something along the lines of "Bring Mommy back!" or "Why did you make Mommy go away!") and he realized that he just couldn't handle it. I also think, while it's true that he might have been trying to spare Shinji pain by avoiding him, a lot of that is him using Shinji's pain as an excuse to mask his own insecurities from himself.
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Postby Chrad » Sun Oct 24, 2010 6:25 am

View Original PostKendrix wrote:Shinji starts developing such an attitude, too ("they can all just die!") but eventually chooses a different path.
Perhaps Gendo used to be just like Shinji.That SDAT-Player used to be his, after all... Then he gave up and just threw it away. Shinji ended up throwing it away as well, realizing that he 'hates the world' as well, but then, Rei and Mari happen...

Except
SPOILER: Show
Shinji literally says, "I don't care about the world, or myself", but only Rei, right before his charge at Zeruel. I'm not sure he's changed as much as you think he has.

View Original PostLucretius wrote:No, ReShinji ends up exactly like Gendo--fixated on a single person to the point where he becomes a genocidal asshole. Whether Anno actually realizes this is open for debate, however.

Given the above quote, I think he probably does.

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Postby Kendrix » Sun Oct 24, 2010 8:13 am

I won't even reply to the ReShinji bashing, we'll only get off topic.

However, what I wanted to stress is that Gendo has the same problem as Shinji.
Gendo probably didn't have that much left to give, he raised Rei and despite his best intentions didn't manage to give her any decent emotional input.
Then again, at least the first two Reis weren't too dissatisfied with him (all teh smiling in ep. 5...) so perhaps Gendo is a little less useless as a father than he thought he was.
If he had tried, he might have suceeded.
As I said, exactly the same problem as Shinji.
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