Shinji Character Analysis (2.0/3.0)

Discussion of the new series of Evangelion movies ( "Evangelion Shin Gekijōban", meaning "Evangelion: New Theatrical Edition").
The final installment is scheduled to debut in Japan on January 23, 2021.

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Postby Bagheera » Sun May 12, 2013 4:23 pm

View Original PostXiel wrote:Bagheera, you're giving me hope. I just pray that Khara won't ruthlessly shatter it. :lol:


Heh. The irony here is that I can only offer that hope because I lost mine once I understood how Break was structured and why. This is also why ElMariachi's point about characters who were important to Shinji in NGE somewhat misses the mark -- in NGE Asuka, Rei, Misato, Gendo, and Yui all had their own story arcs that were independent of Shinji's, while in NTE that is not the case. You say you worry about Shikinami getting the Harpy treatment in Final, but I would absolutely welcome it. Hell, I would exult in it! See, in NGE that was an absolutely critical part of Asuka's storyline -- it was the scene where Anno brutally drove home the point that giant robots are not the solution to Asuka's problems, and since she ultimately returned to life it became a watershed moment in the telling of her story: it was the point where she began her life as a person free of Eva. That might ultimately work out and it might not, but either way it's her story. By contrast Shikinami's treatment in Break served only to advance Shinji's story -- the girl herself was irrelevant, and in fact it really wouldn't matter who was in Unit 03 since the end result would be the same (and lo, it was! Shinji's story at that point played out the same here as it did in NGE, which tells us how important Shikinami ultimately is to the story -- roughly comparable to Touji in NGE).

So what's my point? Well, depressing as it is this is actually a ray of hope for people who still bother to care about the character, since it means we can say with some certainty that nothing will happen in Final unless it advances Shinji's story in some fashion. And will a Harpy slaughterfest for Shikinami do that? I can't see how. The kid's already wrecked, so it's not like it will push him over the edge or something. At this point we either rebuild Shinji or shove him into Unit 01 and let the fun begin, and killing Shikinami wouldn't advance the story in either case. So she's probably safe, same as any other nobody on the Wunder. Misato, OTOH . . . yikes. :cringe: I wouldn't take any bets on her survival through Final, no way no how.
For my post-3I fic, go here.
The law doesn't protect people. People protect the law. -- Akane Tsunemori, Psycho-Pass
People's deaths are to be mourned. The ability to save people should be celebrated. Life itself should be exalted. -- Volken Macmani, Tatakau Shisho: The Book of Bantorra
I hate myself. But maybe I can learn to love myself. Maybe it's okay for me to be here! That's right! I'm me, nothing more, nothing less! I'm me. I want to be me! I want to be here! And it's okay for me to be here! -- Shinji Ikari, Neon Genesis Evangelion
Yes, I know. You thought it would be something about Asuka. You're such idiots.

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Postby ElMariachi » Sun May 12, 2013 4:37 pm

@ Xiel and pwhodges :
Well, in 1.0 we got a lot of scenes of Shinji and Misato alone, conversing or thinking about one each other, whether it was during missions, post missions(after the almost catastrophic fight against Shamshell), in Misato's apartment, or when she took him to see the city emerging from the ground for the first time, or when she showed him Lilith to make him understand why they fought and why they needed Shinji. in fact, all the scenes depicting Shinji's personality and character development had Misato in it.

In 2.0 we don't have scene like that, except at the beginning when they are talking just after Shinji's visit of his mother's grave(which was cut short by Clockiel's attack and Asuka's introduction), and latter when she tried to convince Shinji to don't go after the Bardiel incident(which ended in a failure). Instead of that we have various scenes where Rei's feeling for Shinji are brought up, like the elevator scene, and we get various scenes of Rei alone in her apartment, deep in her thoughts, something completely absent in 1.0.
Of course the rest of the cast don't disappear : we got scenes with Rei in 1.0(when Shinji visit her and found her naked, or their discussion just before the beginning of operation Yashima), and Misato is still here in 2.0(she even get her little scene with Kaji at the restaurant/bar), and Asuka got her share of scenes too(her conversation with Shinji after the fight against Sahaquiel, when she tried to cook for Shinji, or her last conversation with Misato before everything goes irremediably to hell), but still the character who get the more of scenes is Rei in 2.0.
At least that's how I feel it.

And of course in 3.0 we have all the bonding between Shinji and Kaworu, the latter incontestably being a deuteragonist alongside Shinji, the fact that for most the film the cast is reduced to five people surely helps(Shinji, Kaworu, ReiQ , Gendo and Fuyutsuki).

And as I think that Anno will surely keep his trend of one movie = one secondary character on the spotlight, I'm sure that the next one will be Asuka, she and Shinji have a lot of pending matters to resolves : Shinji who didn't do anything to help Asuka against Bardiel 14 years ago, their responsibility in the pulling of the spears(because yes I think that charging Shinji with a giant double Glaive while screaming like a berserk really didn't helped matters, although I admit that most of the fault is still Shinji's...), or why did she have so much pent-up grief and anger against him, something it almost looks like she's the one with the biggest grudge against him of the whole WILLE crew!
Mari will probably be relevant and probably reveal important things, but personally I don't see her having a role very different of a WILLE version of Fuyutsuki : the one who will appear and launch a big info-dump that will change everything. She has been introduced in that same movie than Asuka, and yet got less relevance than her, so if someone has to get some character development, I see more Asuka getting it than Mari. Besides getting character development take that and many scenes, and for that to happen the characters must have time to interact with each other : Shinji will probably be confined, so he will have all the time in the world, Misato is too busy commanding the Wunder and the rest of WILLE's fleet, ReiQ is not the "important" Rei andher character development seems to go toward separating herself from the shadow of Rei II, and as for Mari, she's the last pilot with a working EVA, she will be too busy piloting for two to do more than one, maybe two relevant scenes with Shinji.


As for Shinji's relationship focus always connected to his father, that could be true(although found Misato's connection through the fact that both have difficult relationship with their father a little light), and Shinji getting a relationship focus not connected to Gendo would be a sign that he's finally moving from his father's influence : in 2.0 he kinda cut the ties after the Bardiel incident, but his connection with Rei made Gendo still having a lever to manipulate Shinji(and indeed that was his plan to make them both awake EVA-01 later, except Shinji beat him on it against Zeruel), and in 3.0, Shinji is so confused about all the changes that happened that he got back right into Gendo's hands, look at the end of their one and only conversation when Shinji almost begged him to wait and talk to him and answer his questions, and all the ways he manipulated him to drive him nuts enough so that he would fuck up Kaworu's plan when the later will discover that it was a trap, because I really can't believe that Shinji driven so nuts by Kaworu and Fuyutsuki's revelations, weren't at least planned by Gendo, if not outright ordered in Fuyutsuki's case, and because I can't believe that coincidently the automated system gave him Toji's shirt, the one which would make him freak out enough to ask to Kaworu to show him what happened to Tokyo-3 which marked the beginning of his downright spiral to madness.

Shinji personally cut every bond with Gendo when he learned what his father was up to and what he did with Rei, and Kaworu's dead marked the end of Gendo having Shinji between his hands, as he discarded him now that he have fulfilled his role in awakening EVA-13 and getting rid of Kaworu. And a new relationship for Shinji which for once don't have anything to do with Gendo(aside that she's fighting against him like the rest of WILLE) will achieve to convey the message that finally, Shinji is free from Gendo's invisible hand, and he can begin to move forward.
Last edited by ElMariachi on Sun May 12, 2013 4:56 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Postby Bagheera » Sun May 12, 2013 4:44 pm

ElMariachi: Your premise doesn't really hold. If you look at actual screentime you'll find that Rei got a fair bit in Prelude and that Rei and Asuka broke about even in Break. The whole "one secondary per film" idea doesn't really stand up to scrutiny. This is particularly true if you weight scenes according to their impact on the plot, in which case many of Misato's scenes in Prelude amount to establishment and little more. Be wary of confirmation bias!
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I hate myself. But maybe I can learn to love myself. Maybe it's okay for me to be here! That's right! I'm me, nothing more, nothing less! I'm me. I want to be me! I want to be here! And it's okay for me to be here! -- Shinji Ikari, Neon Genesis Evangelion
Yes, I know. You thought it would be something about Asuka. You're such idiots.

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Postby ElMariachi » Sun May 12, 2013 4:57 pm

View Original PostBagheera wrote:ElMariachi: Your premise doesn't really hold. If you look at actual screentime you'll find that Rei got a fair bit in Prelude and that Rei and Asuka broke about even in Break. The whole "one secondary per film" idea doesn't really stand up to scrutiny. This is particularly true if you weight scenes according to their impact on the plot, in which case many of Misato's scenes in Prelude amount to establishment and little more. Be wary of confirmation bias!

Hey, as I said, that was the feeling I got when I saw the movies, I'm not saying I'm holding the truth!

For me, the message of NTE seems slightly different than NGE : in NGE it was that one must face reality and don't try escapism by running away or piloting giant robots, while in NTE it's more that you have to move and act to obtain what you want, but that don't mean you have to only did what you want, there is other people on this world and what the think and believe is as important that what you think and believe.
That's a lesson that Shinji must learn, and only did always at the moment(he try to act, and sometimes even want to act, but is still in a shut off and selfish mindset).
On a narrative level, the message for Shinji isn't to don't rely on the giant robot to solve his problems(= don't do escapism via an otaku lifestyle to avoid the problems of life), but to understand that said giant robot is only a tool, a mean to get to his goals, and that if he wants to be worthy of pilot it, he must understand the power he have between his hands and not using it only for his own selfish desires and point of view(= you like giant robot, that's your choice, but don't make it the center of your life, there is people outside that maybe don't like giant robots, but that don't make them uninteresting or unworthy to the bother to go to know them!). It's the whole "with great power comes great responsibilities", but with giant robots!
I believe in that slightly different interpretation because due to what the trailer hinted to us(the giant army of MP-EVAs, Gendo with his Instrumentality, probably the Nemesis Series still intact...) aside from giants robots(and I count in Wunder in it) nothing will save the day... BUT that won't be the end. Once Gendo is defeated, the world will still need to be rebuilt, and giant robots won't be the solution, maybe they will help by providing energy, or to move big objects, but that's it, they will be tools for the humans, nothing more, and nothing less.

As for Asuka, isn't she already "free" from the EVA, since EVA-02 is just a smoldering corpse composed of a head and a torso?(unless WILLE manage to repair it somehow, maybe the Wunder has something for it now that it have infinite energy?)
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Seriously, that is the most fananked theory I've ever heard, more than Mari being Marty McFly travelling through time to keep her parents (Asushin) together. -- Jäeger

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Postby Xiel » Sun May 12, 2013 4:57 pm

View Original PostBagheera wrote:Heh. The irony here is that I can only offer that hope because I lost mine once I understood how Break was structured and why. This is also why ElMariachi's point about characters who were important to Shinji in NGE somewhat misses the mark -- in NGE Asuka, Rei, Misato, Gendo, and Yui all had their own story arcs that were independent of Shinji's, while in NTE that is not the case. You say you worry about Shikinami getting the Harpy treatment in Final, but I would absolutely welcome it. Hell, I would exult in it! See, in NGE that was an absolutely critical part of Asuka's storyline -- it was the scene where Anno brutally drove home the point that giant robots are not the solution to Asuka's problems, and since she ultimately returned to life it became a watershed moment in the telling of her story: it was the point where she began her life as a person free of Eva. That might ultimately work out and it might not, but either way it's her story. By contrast Shikinami's treatment in Break served only to advance Shinji's story -- the girl herself was irrelevant, and in fact it really wouldn't matter who was in Unit 03 since the end result would be the same (and lo, it was! Shinji's story at that point played out the same here as it did in NGE, which tells us how important Shikinami ultimately is to the story -- roughly comparable to Touji in NGE).


I do not mind Shikinami paying the price of irrelevance in exchange of survival. Because there are always future projects that have no emphasis on Shinji that could explore her. I'm also hopeful that Final will not be the end of Evangelion, but the beginning. ^_^

You're absolutely right. The character would serve to advance Shinji's story and, more importantly, his story with Gendo.

@ElMariachi: Bagheera's correct about the warning. In 1.0, we see Rei's backstory (just a glimpse - a backstory involving Shinji's father -) and in 2.0, we see Misato's backstory (- one related to daddy issues emphasis. - ). While someone else shared it for them without Shinji being presence, it doesn't take that Shinji learned from Rei in 1.0 and from Misato on 2.0. This is a huge deal.

Secondly, Q Gendo scheme: that was the point. Everything is orbiting around Gendo, no character that has been removed from Gendo-influence is been relevant. While Kaworu's the relationship that's not marked by Gendo-pushing in some way (Kaworu doesn't care all that much about Gendo or daddy issues) as the ones with the girls did (look no further to the "bonding" scene with Asuka and Shinji on the futon was about... his father). Kaworu was Gendo's nemesis. One of Gendo's goals was to remove him off the way. You can even say that 3.33 plot was about Gendo using everyone to get this accomplished (that and awakening Eva 13). He was keeping an eye on those two, sending Fuyutsuki to spy on them.

In every decisive plot point of the movies (and relationship forged), Gendo element has been inescapable in some way. So far in 3.0, there haven't been any acknowledgement to foreshadow anything Asuka-involved with Gendo. We have plenty of Misato and Mari. Maybe Final will make a wild shift and have Shinji focus on Misato and count with Asuka's help. Maybe. But I was basing on the logic that have been built so far.

Even if Shinji "cuts off" ties with Gendo to fight him it implies it's still about him, it implies he'll need the help of the characters defined by opposing Gendo (Misato) or by mysterious connection to Gendo who can read his plans (Mari) to accomplish anything concrete. At least in my opinion.

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Postby ElMariachi » Tue May 14, 2013 6:06 pm

There is something I always tough odd during the fight between Asuka and Shinji : why Kaworu never tried to help Shinji in trying to reason Asuka?
I understand that he was deep in thoughts because he felt something was wrong... but right in front of him there was a German fury hellbent on skewering them with a giant glaive, and his partner had all the difficulties on the world to keep her at bay because he didn't wanted to harm her, and they magical drones were being destroyed one behind the other!

Basically during that battle Shinji wanted to make understand to Asuka that he didn't wanted to destroy the world with the spears, but to actually save it, and her answers where interesting :

Firstly when Shinji tells her that he's indeed piloting and that will change the world by doing it, she responds :
01:09:15 {Asuka} If that's how it is, don't pilot!


Secondly, when Asuka asks if Shinji wants to cause 3I again, Shinji responds that no, he don't want to finish the world, but to save it with the spears, then Asuka leans back, scowls at him and deliver that line :
01:10:16 {Asuka} You really *are* a little brat.

The way these two lines are said, it looks like Asuka don't see Shinji as an enemy, but as someone who said something really wrong and/or stupid, and can't believe he actually said that. It looks like Asuka knows, or think she knows what will happen if Shinji pull out the spears.

Now let's going back in time, when Kaworu explained his plan to Shinji in his room :
01:02:34 {Kaworu} Ikari Shinji-kun, your only hope lies with the two Spears left at the Impact epicenter in Dogma.
01:02:41 {Kaworu} They are the keys to invoking the Instrumentality Project.
01:02:45 {Kaworu} We should take those Spears for ourselves.
01:02:48 {Kaworu} That way, Nerv can no longer trigger the Fourth Impact,
01:02:52 {Kaworu} And if we use them together with Eva-13, we can even repair the world.


By NERV, Kaworu was probably designing SEELE, as he though that Gendo, and thus neo-NERV, came back to following SEELE's scenario, if not he wouldn't have been so much surprised by Gendo's little trick with the spears. Anyway, what's important is that apparently the two spears a essential to trigger Instrumentality.

Now back to WILLE and the fight in Lilith's chamber : WILLE seems to have learned a lot of things about SEELE's plans, and indeed when the DSS Choker detected a unknown until then pattern blue(Kaworu's), she looked very surprised :
01:16:13 {Mari} Blood type blue from the DSS Choker?
01:16:15 {Mari} But there shouldn't *be* a Thirteenth!


The number and order of apparition of the Angel are consigned in the Secret Dead Sea Scrolls. The fact that Mari, a member of WILLE, know at least that there should be only twelve Angel is a sign that she must know about the SDSS, indeed if someone wants to fight SEELE knowing about these scrolls is of vital importance since all of SEELE's scenario is based on them.
Added to Asuka's behavior toward Shinji, that could imply that WILLE knows how SEELE wants to launch Instrumentality, by using the two spears.

So the logical conclusion is that Asuka and Mari didn't saw Shinji as an enemy willingly working for neo-NERV and SEELE, but as a "neutral party" being manipulated by the bad guys, who made him think that he can be an hero and save the world if he retrieve the two magical spears.
Except that Shinji already knows what NERV intends to do with the spears, and he's actually trying with Kaworu to double-cross them... so then, why did Kaworu said nothing? Why didn't he at least tried to corroborate Shinji's claims that they aren't trying to finish 3I's job? The guy is obsessed by Shinji, he must be one of the people who knows the most how Shinji works, even if he was deep in thoughts, he should have seen how much having to defend against Asuka was putting him dangerously close to the edge, and should have at least tried something to defuse the situation before it ends up completely out of control.
Instead of that, he kept talking only to Shinji via the internal communication system, as if he absolutely wanted to make Shinji stop without having to interact with anyone else.


Now let's come back again, when Kaworu explained to Shinji what happened to the world :
00:50:55 {Kaworu} Mass extinctions are not unusual on this planet.
00:50:58 {Kaworu} In fact, they help drive evolution.
00:51:02 {Kaworu} Life has always changed itself to adapt to the world around it.
00:51:08 {Kaworu} However, Lilin change not themselves, but the world.
00:51:15 {Kaworu} So they brought the rite of artificial evolution unto themselves.
00:51:21 {Kaworu} Old life is offered in sacrifice,
00:51:23 {Kaworu} so that new beings blessed with the Fruit of Life may be created.
00:51:29 {Kaworu} All this is an act of extinction that has been programmed since time immemorial.
00:51:33 {Kaworu} Nerv call it the Human Instrumentality Project.

And back to his conversation in Shinji's room :
01:02:34 {Kaworu} Ikari Shinji-kun, your only hope lies with the two Spears left at the Impact epicenter in Dogma.
01:02:41 {Kaworu} They are the keys to invoking the Instrumentality Project.
01:02:45 {Kaworu} We should take those Spears for ourselves.
01:02:48 {Kaworu} That way, Nerv can no longer trigger the Fourth Impact,
01:02:52 {Kaworu} And if we use them together with Eva-13, we can even repair the world.

Kaworu actually never, ever mentions SEELE to Shinji, not once. Why? Saying to Shinji that Gendo is working for a secret organization wouldn't have changed Shinji's resolve to stop his father. Instead of that, by always citing NERV when talking about is trying to bring Instrumentality and who Kaworu is trying to thwart by keeping the spears for themselves, and since by that point NERV = Gendo(and Fuyutsuki), Kaworu is turning Shinji against Gendo, but not SEELE, as Shinji didn't even know they exist.

In NGE, Kaworu's reason to betray SEELE was that after learning more about the Lilin, he fell in love with them, their culture, their achievements, and thought that SEELE was in the wrong path in trying to erase all of this under the unification of Instrumentality. In the manga, his betrayal comes from his will to chose his death, his "only freedom", on his own terms, so basically out of spite against SEELE, and besides he told Shinji that even if he makes contact with Lilith, the Third Impact that would follow wouldn't annihilate mankind, but make it evolve into something else.
But here in Rebuild, what are Kaworu's motivation? Shinji's happiness. Why is he betraying SEELE? For Shinji's happiness... but is he really betraying SEELE, after all we only saw him talking about thwarting NERV(=Gendo)'s plans, he never talks about SEELE.
And when he talked about the "rite of artificial evolution" that the Lilin brought into themselves, he said that it "has been programmed since time immemorial", like it was mankind's destiny. But not once did he said that SEELE's "rite of artificial evolution"(i.e. Instrumentality) was wrong, unlike in NGE, he only talked about NERV.

So here goes my theory : what if Kaworu actually stayed loyal to SEELE to the end? What if Kaworu was working to bring forth SEELE's Instrumentality?

If Kaworu though that Instrumentality indeed was mankind's destiny, and that all that SEELE wanted this time was the "peaceful purification of all souls" brought by Human Instrumentality, why would SEELE's goal be incompatible with Kaworu's objective to make Shinji happy? After all we don't know what he meant by "making Shinji happy", and he was talking about that even before 3.0 where making him happy would simply be letting him fix the world. So what if Kaworu's goal was to make Shinji the center of Instrumentality so that he could temporarily become a god and shape a world to fit to his own definition of happiness. Shinji would create his own happiness, SEELE would have their purification of the soul they wanted so much, and everyone is contented!
Sounds crazy? Well remember that Yui had a similar plan for Shinji in NGE and the manga : putting him at the center of Instrumentality, so that he would be the one to decide if mankind should be saved and given the choice to return to reality, or if mankind should be shaped into something else to erase the pain brought by their existence. And Yui had only Shinji's best interests at heart(at least what was his best interests in her head), so why wouldn't Kaworu, someone literally obsessed with making Shinji happy, have a similar plan?

Last thing, you must all have noticed how SEELE didn't really gave a shit that Gendo betrayed them and turned them off, implying that he also had something planned to get rid from Kaworu, and their response?
01:17:21 {Seele 01} Our wishes have come to fruition.
01:17:25 {Seele 01} Good.
01:17:26 {Seele 01} All is well now.
01:17:29 {Seele 01} We wish for Human Instrumentality, the peaceful purification of all souls.


By the look of it, they already got what they wanted. You could think that it was Mark.09 about to hijack the Wunder... but frankly, how could the Wunder fit into SEELE's plan to trigger Instrumentality? Maybe they wanted to capture it to have a emergency plan by retrieving EVA-01, but betting everything on the chance that one EVA will be able to hijack a flying fortress protected by other EVAs seems a little flimsy for a bunch of guys who planned Instrumentality for thousands of years, so what could they have been talking about that basically told to Gendo "suck it, we still win little boy!"?...
01:25:41 {Kaworu} We'll meet again, Shinji-kun.

Yep, their "boy" as Gendo calls it is still in the run, and will probably act during Final, as he made it clear to Shinji that they will meet again!

So ladies and gentlemen, mark my words, SEELE isn't done yet, and we will still hear of them in FINAL!


On a side note, if my(somewhat crazy) theory is true, that would have the benefit to shed a new light on WILLE's actions at the end of 3.0 : that would mean that no matter how were the spears, if there where two different like Kaworu and SEELE hoped, or two of the same type like Gendo planned, WILLE were doing a good thing, preventing any kind of Impact or Instrumentality since in any cases an Impact and/or Instrumentality would have happened, and that indeed Shinji was completely manipulated since the beginning!
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Postby wiser3754 » Wed May 15, 2013 6:58 am

Has anyone posted that Shinji has undergone four of the five stages of acceptance?

1.Anger: At the start of the film.
2.Denial: He believes that third impact wasn't his fault.
3.Bargaining: He refuses to pilot another EVA until Kaworu lifts the DSS Choker off his neck.
4.Depression: His current state of mind at the end of the film.
5.Acceptance: This will be the central theme in FINAL, where he either dies or undergoes Instrumentality.

Also, has anyone noticed the leaked image from FINAL? Seven horse monoliths surrounding Gendo's desk, a little forward if you ask me if you're trying to show a motif of the horseman of the apocalypse.
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Postby pwhodges » Wed May 15, 2013 7:51 am

But in the Kübler-Ross model these stages are all aspects of grief related to some specific awful fate, such as impending death, life after a breakup, or some-such. What aspect of Shinji's situation are you viewing these as linked to?
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Postby Charsi » Wed May 15, 2013 7:56 am

View Original Postwiser3754 wrote:3.Bargaining: He refuses to pilot another EVA until Kaworu lifts the DSS Choker off his neck.


This particular point I think is way off the mark. Shinji never even asks Kaworu to take it off. The bargaining point, if anything, would be in the fact that Shinji even agrees to pilot. Kaworu sells him a lie (perhaps Kaworu didn't believe it to be a lie, but whatever) and Shinji grasps at it like a drowning man grasping at straws. He jumps at the chance - pilot Eva, fix the world.

Incidentally as I recall those five stages were identified was patients diagnosed with terminal illnesses.

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Postby Literary Eagle » Wed May 15, 2013 8:15 am

wiser3754 wrote:Also, has anyone noticed the leaked image from FINAL? Seven horse monoliths surrounding Gendo's desk, a little forward if you ask me if you're trying to show a motif of the horseman of the apocalypse.


That's not a leaked image from FINAL (I think somebody just called it that as a joke). It's actually from a commercial for the Japanese Racing Association: [url]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m-aatF0-opk[/url]

More discussion about those commercials can be found here: [url]http://forum.evageeks.org/thread/13234/Japanese-Racing-Association-campaign/[/url]
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Postby Kendrix » Wed May 15, 2013 8:45 pm

Anyone who tells me that Shinji doesn't care because he said that "At least I saved Ayanami", needs to rewatch that scene without cherrypicking the quotes.

We see him lie awake in bed, obviously unable to find any rest.
Take a look at his expression, take a look at the tone with which he says it, take a look at the rest of the dialogue, at that scene in its entirety. He's tossing and turning, and while he has those earplugs stuck in, they do not seem to bring him any comfort.
Sinji: "What on... What am I supposed to... Right, I, saved Ayanami... wasn't that a good thing?"

From this point of the film, he shows sighns of insomnia, and when Asuka finally pulls him out to the daylight, he's markedly depicted with hollow cheeks, so he probably hasn't been eating properly, either - Classic symptoms of someone suffering from immense guilt.

This is not, "Fuck you all I still have my fuck puppet" AT ALL. This is the schock at the complete non-sequitur (to him) of how "kill the monster and grab the girl" resulted in poof, end of the world.
He's asking himself why this had to happen, what else he should have done, usually "save a person right in front of you when you don't know of any repercussions" would be a dead ringer for the right thing;
There is a tinge of indignation in his voice, which you may classify as not exactly mature, but more of the "This is just not fair!" variety.


PPL, this wasn't was this interview was saying. Look at the whole thing and how it points out a certain similarity between Anno & Shinji, and the way they... usually want what they do (Which is why Shinji, in Q, has no strategies to deal with having been the cause. At the time, I thought it was quite an epic concept, a phenomenon. Shinji and the truth about him.). It's about this whole "reson to fight" subplot, in the context of the original episode 19/ first two movies.
Shinji was in that whole victim position, "You forced me into this", and, in some ways, this is very true, but when it comes to the question of, how does he arrange himself with his life... IT's like in mathematics or physics. No model is perfect or absolute, you need to choose a model that best fits your situation and make definitions that are useful for what you want to do. With low pressure, you use the ideal gas equation, with high pressure, you use the van-der-waals equation.
EoTV all over again - A model of himself as a victim won't help Shinji himself to fix stuff, because being a victim essentially means waiting to be saved, and no one's comming. That doesn't mean he isn't one in another model used to judge the situation from a whole different viewpoint.
The point of that quote was, essentially, that Shinji had many chances to leave, he wasn't kicking and screaming all the way to the entry plug every time, he stayed for a reason, a reason that perhaps wasn't primarily "human civilization" (as with Misato), a reason that... he was trying to find.

So what this whole thing with Shinji seeing the destruction and rushing back was meant to be about was honesty.

And yeah... those... states he gets in where he's just moping and just not receptible to further input. Not uncommon for a freakin' teenager, and very far from being a delusional selfish psychopath. This is why 14 year olds usually aren't allowed alcohol, tatoos, guns, cars or other things that could cause permanent nastiness.
And even adults are often suspectible to listening to their inner gorilla - that's why we have "irrational market" phenomenons, obesity, no money left at the end of the month...
But there's a difference between "not accepting any imput right now" and deliberately disregarding the interests of others while putting your own above them. Shinji never did that. Emphasis on "doesn't notice those things". He simply isn't thinking that far - when he sees the consequences, (the destroyed Geofront) he rushes right back. It's always been like this, that he ultimately won't disregard those things.

"Fuck you I'm getting what I want" and "I'm not doing it for you, suckers!" are vastly different statements. Especially when you've basically been used, and very pissed about it.
Sure, there is this subtext that we're meant to realize in hindsight that the Bardiel incident wasn't a black and white affair and that Shinji could have acted more mature about it, but let's not bagatellize the damn violating experience he just went through.
This general level of snarkiness and dismissal used here is just...
"The conclusion is supposed to be this, stupid, because I read what the conclusion is supposed to be!"... everyone can parrot that. Maybe it's just a symptom of this whole meta-postmodernism thing in general starting to outstay its welcome. Everyone can praise things? Well, everyone can be all snarky and deconstruc-y about it, too. It's just something that annoys me in general; I'm bored of the goddamn post-2001-time, bring on the next fucking... art style, whatever.
It's the point that it's not simple, that the conclusion was a hard earned thing, both for the protagonist (in EoE, at least) and the dude writing him.
Shinji, in his situation, has a right to feel rigtheously cheated out of his life.
It may not be the most productive thing ever, and the whole point is that there are better options, but dismissing this as "childish butthurt" is just arrogant.

The situation is not the same with the spears deal in the sense that he did have information and that there was a direct choice involved; But you need to see this from the viewpoint of someone who didn't read the ending as soon as the first spoilers arrived.
It's closer to your classic "tragedy of impulsiveness" than it is to any act of selfishness or delusion;
He was told it could go wrong. Sure, the ideal thing would have been to ask, "Go wrong, HOW?"
Yeah, he chose "risky, quick and tangible" over "safe, long-term and uncertain".
Panicky Humans often do that. But... he had to make a call, with this whole responsibility on his shoulders, and he made one.
You have to imagine this process/outcome as "Not yet decided"... If there was the tiniest chance that you could... you know, turn a wasteland back into a world with people, go back to a familiar place where your friends and surrogate family are...

Sure his own interests were a factor, but he has to keep himself moving with *some* motivations, and how does one preclude the other? Shinji never saw his interests as being in conflict with those of others; He simply didn't chose himself over them. As far as he knew, both saving the world and getting Rei require slaying Zeruel. So what if he's looking forward more to some touchy-feely session than he is to another day of being a glorified remote control? It's like saying, "Yeah, I'm a Doctor and I cure ppl, but what I like best is earning lots of cash for my family.".
Same with the spears situation - So what if he'd really like to prove himself to his former flat mates/the closest thing he ever had to a family?
Misato and Asuka would profit from not living in a wasteland.


Before Asuka arrived, he was asking "Wait, what do you mean the wrong spears?"
He was willing to talk to her; He was only deflecting her attacks/ even stepping back at first, he only really attacks her once he figures she will not listen; Of course, when he physically, directly grabbed her weapon, there was no turning back for him;

The ironic thing is, Shinji was always hesitant to... give definitive aswers, a definitive yes or a definitive no, he didn't want to close the open doors behind him because he figured they would snap shut at any moment.
When he attacked Asuka he... shut a door there. In the assumption that there was another path he could follow. But it snapped shut.

---

As for the next Guide, Mari. Because, she already had an advisor-relationship with him, sort of, as much as you can say that with their few meetings.

Asuka... First, she hates his guts. Properly. Misato's holding back, but Asuka's pulling at him like an object; That's not how the character of Asuka was ever used in this narrative, she's something that Shinji has to overcome, not someone who helps him with the overcoming; In the lucky incident that he will earn back a little of their sense of comeradery, it will be after he's listened to and applied the lessons by whoever the guide will be, she will be the prize, not the helper.
She won't get back to...not mistreating him before half the movie is over, her respect/comeraderie will be hard earned, assuming Anno DOES plan on Shinji's redemption.

I sure hope he does earn it back eventually, because he f***ing needs it.

---

Also, no one is saying that him just jumping off something high is the ideal solution; We just don't see how Anno could beliavably make him end up alive and better off for it. There is such a thing as a fate worse than death.
Of course we want him to grow into a man and overcome shit etc. but this isn't about what we "want".

No one's saying that he couldn't use some maturity - it's just that all maturity in the world might not help him anymore. He'll still be the "Impact brat" when he's, like, fifty.
Last edited by Kendrix on Wed May 15, 2013 9:02 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby Rei IV » Wed May 15, 2013 9:01 pm

I don't understand how Asuka is some obstacle that Shinji needs to overcome in the next movie. This is Shikinami, not Soryu. Shinji is too suicidal and self-loathing to care about any potential abuse or mistreatment from Asuka or WILLIE to have the need to "overcome" her and the crew in any way shape or form. Hell, for all we know, she'll probably be the one, along with Mari, to bring him out of his shell and into reality.

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Postby Kendrix » Wed May 15, 2013 9:09 pm

View Original PostRei IV wrote:I don't understand how Asuka is some obstacle that Shinji needs to overcome in the next movie. This is Shikinami, not Soryu. Shinji is too suicidal and self-loathing to care about any potential abuse or mistreatment from Asuka or WILLIE to have the need to "overcome" her and the crew in any way shape or form. Hell, for all we know, she'll probably be the one, along with Mari, to bring him out of his shell and into reality.


She still hates his ass, and even if she doesn't, there's no doubt that she thinks he's a selfish, useless pile of hydrocarbons.
Her opinion of him could not be any lower.
Sure, he won't be resisting anything she does to him anytime soon, but just sitting around and letting yourself be used as a punching ball is hardly a constructive way to deal with this clusterfuck of a situation; There might not be one at all.
"obstacle" does not necessarily mean always "enemy"; "challenge" might be the word. Getting her to see him as a comerade, not a libality, will be HARD.

PSimple, down-looking pity (at best) or beating and you-suck speeches (at worst) won't do anything but confirm what he could already tell the moment he saw the impact vortex.
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Postby Rei IV » Wed May 15, 2013 9:44 pm

Yeah, I honestly can't see it. I honestly believe you're desperately reaching in this case. Asuka doesn't hate anybody, she's severely just frustrated and angry, and rightfully so. Either way, Shinji still probably won't care about any potential abuse either from her or WILLE because he's in a miserable, self-loathing state.

:uhh:
Last edited by Rei IV on Wed May 15, 2013 9:47 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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Postby Lennik » Wed May 15, 2013 9:44 pm

View Original PostKendrix wrote:Asuka... First, she hates his guts. Properly. Misato's holding back, but Asuka's pulling at him like an object; That's not how the character of Asuka was ever used in this narrative, she's something that Shinji has to overcome, not someone who helps him with the overcoming;


Jesus, this again?

Kendrix wrote: She still hates his ass, and even if she doesn't, there's no doubt that she thinks he's a selfish, useless pile of hydrocarbons.
Her opinion of him could not be any lower.


If she hated him, she wouldn't drag him out of that entry plug and lead him to safety. She also wouldn't have cried out for his help when she was being fried in the opening scene.

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Postby Rei IV » Wed May 15, 2013 9:51 pm

View Original PostLennik wrote:Jesus, this again?

Discussions like these tend to produce arguments/rebuttals that seem to repeat.....over and over and over and over again. Amusingly enough, it ALWAYS has something to do with Shinji's actions in the movie or whether or not Asuka, Misato, and WILLIE hate his guts and are mindless Shinji-hating drones and consider him worse than Hilter and shit.

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Postby Bagheera » Thu May 16, 2013 1:40 am

View Original PostLennik wrote:Jesus, this again?


It's Kendrix. She hates Asuka, and is dead set on the character being a hateful bitch with no redeeming value in the series. The only question is how she's justifying her hatred at any given moment.

Looking back at the Tsurumaki interview, and thinking about how many of us are like Shinji to one degree or another . . . yeah, I'm really surprised the word "obstinance" didn't show up earlier. :lol:
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Postby wiser3754 » Thu May 16, 2013 2:17 am

View Original PostLiterary Eagle wrote:That's not a leaked image from FINAL (I think somebody just called it that as a joke). It's actually from a commercial for the Japanese Racing Association: [url]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m-aatF0-opk[/url]

More discussion about those commercials can be found here: [url]http://forum.evageeks.org/thread/13234/Japanese-Racing-Association-campaign/[/url]


Thank you, last thing I needed to see in final was a massive continuity error (SEELE's dead, or deactivated).
I watch and speculate.

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Postby Kendrix » Thu May 16, 2013 11:05 am

View Original PostBagheera wrote: She hates Asuka, and is dead set on the character being a hateful bitch with no redeeming value in the series.


No, I just don't think the concept of "tough love" makes any bloody sense.
Besides, the images speak for themselves.
Also, wether Asuka hates Shinji, and wether shes "a bitch with no redeeming value" are not necessarily directly correlated.

Besides, that was by far not the main point of the posting; What I was saying is, that the way this character is used in this show so far (including Rebuild) is not that of...
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Postby xanderkh » Thu May 16, 2013 12:29 pm

View Original PostRei IV wrote:Discussions like these tend to produce arguments/rebuttals that seem to repeat.....over and over and over and over again. Amusingly enough, it ALWAYS has something to do with Shinji's actions in the movie or whether or not Asuka, Misato, and WILLIE hate his guts and are mindless Shinji-hating drones and consider him worse than Hilter and shit.


Like Anno once said, Evangelion is a story that Repeats itself. And apparently, that's evident both inside AND out. :lol:
"You're na�ve, Cecil. Even knowing betrayal and despair, you would depend on the whims of others?" - Golbez
---------------------------------------
Sephiroth: "Do you miss the Light?"
Golbez: "Hmph...I merely have duties to fulfill."
Sephiroth: "Too close to the brightness, and you may get scorched."
Golbz:.............
Golbez: Your loss can strengthen you.

"NGE Shinji is broken, Manga Shinji is an asshole, Rebuild Shinji is an idiot. Which is best? Uh, can I get some other options? All of these really suck." -Bagheera


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