Well, I didn't expected to have the scene happening in Paris, hell I didn't expected that the Euro-NERV would have any relevance in the plot (especially after the 14 years time skip), nor did I expected to see the positron canon again (especially as an enemy weapon).
I'm torn between annoyance at seeing the Eiffel Tower get smashed in yet another movie, and laughing out loud at the sheer insanity of using it to ram a fucking building-sizing laser rifle of doom to make it explode (Mari apologizing to Eiffel in French
is just the icing on the cake!)
And then there's the revelation that Paris got the Tokyo-3 treatment and is a giant modular city with sections that can rise or sink in the ground is just so batshit crazy that it goes all the way around to hilarious and awesome!
Also, I suppose the fact that of the 6 people in the tower, only the three women get the form-fitting pilot suits of different colors while the three men have all the same orange suit with a form covering vest in top can't be anything else than good old
Still, after an entire film trying to reset everything and having it blow up his best friend's head, Shinji's gonna be even more devastated when he'll learn that WILLE already have technology that can restore the world!
Also, I goddamn love Ritsuko wearing her lab coat over the suit. It looks so awesome, and her standing with her arms crossed as she's almost about to be crushed by the Angel before Mari interrupts is the most badass thing I've seen in years.
Am I the only one that thought that she would look really dumb if her lab coat turns to core and encases her?
Yeah, did wonder - Japan Unit 2?
What I took away from this was that we're getting more hints on the intervening years. The Wille crew appears to be completing work started (unsucessfully) by others - Maya offers a prayer to those who hoped to save Paris, and the techs state that they're picking up the restart process from Stage 4. They end at Stage 5, so presumable Stages 1-3 had been carried out by the people who started the work.
There's a bit of french written on the bulkhead next to Maya's terminal before she offers her prayer, but its a bit low-res to make out. Anyone got a bead on that?
Edit: it appears to read Je Vons Laisse
- I leave you. A goodbye message written by someone about to die?
Maya' screen turns on in with a "RESTART DECRYPTION" with a "Stage Layer Map" at 3, so indeed it looks like they restarted a process that someone else began before :
Also a little later, one of the guys complains that they are making slow progresses, Maya answers "It's an enigma like the Evas. Control through human language isn't easy":
Which for me implies that their "stages" aren't stages of clearing the atmosphere and purifying the land, but to crack the code of the pillar they are on, probably they are a piece of angelic technology (like the spears) that they found somewhere (Black Moon and/or White Mon and/or the Moon) or reproduced from angelic technology they found and barely understand how it works and everything it can do (the lances too showed to be multi-purpose, might be the same for the pillars)
My wild guess is that WILLE's allies in France (probably ex-members of the European branch of NERV) began to work on decrypting the pillars' code and had to abandon the project before the end (maybe all those neo-NERV Evas/fake Angels things), and entrusted the data to the Wunder crew because they have a better chance to finish the job without dying. (hence the message written in French "Je vous laisse"/I leave you)
Arcadia's legacy wrote:
Any particular reason the 44B units are using the goose step
form of march?
A reference to the Paris Occupation during WWII perhaps? I'm not even joking, since this was originally a Prussian parade marching step, that the German Empire and latter Nazi Germany kept. The reason it spread to many country is because German military advisors spread the tradition to Russia in the 19th century and China during the early 20th century, and later the Soviet Union and PRC advisors spread it to their allies during the Cold War. The Wehrmacht infamously paraded like this on the Champs Elysées after the fall of Paris in 1940.
"Deputy Commander Fuyutsuki must be testing us."
Which implies the 4444C and 44B units were sent by nu-Nerv.
They are, you can see neo-NERV's logo on the generators for the positron canon :
Also Ritsuko's line seems to imply that Fuyutsuki is the "general" of neo-NERV's army while Gendo is doing whatever weird crap in the Door of Guf to finalize whatever it's their plans. So in short, old Fuyu is the general Grevious to Gendo's Count Dooku.
Other things I noticed :
The "staircase" shaped building the ball of Mark 44 crashes into at 9:44 is the new Tribunal of Paris, that was finished in 2018 (I passed in front of it everyday in train when I lived in the West of Paris):
The women are wearing plugsuits of the same designs as Asuka's back in 2.0 and the first half of 3.0, but without the "pauldrons" :
The "cloaking "used by the 4444C and its pals has an appearance very similar to the one deployed by the underwater Marks.04C just before attacking the WILLE fleet in 3.0