IRL has been sniping away my energy and focus, hence the lack of updates... But here's a little something, at least. Mark.09’s True Identity
If Mark.09 was originally one of the Adams’ cores… WHICH Adams’ core? Is there any possible way to know, or at least make an educated guess?
To start with, Mark.09 “awakens” around the same time that Eva-13 does. When Eva-13 ascends up the Main Shaft and into the sky, Mark.09 is visible in a couple of shots following closely behind, halo evident.
Afterward, when Wille attempt to trap and power down Eva-13 with the Wunder, Mark.09 quickly steps in and begins its assault and takeover of the ship, which lets Eva-13 resume its impact unmolested.
That on its own wouldn’t mean much. But there’s more. The following two things are depicted back-to-back: (A) the Seele program inside 09 activating…
...and (B) Shinji losing control of Eva-13.
One happening right after the other suggests there could be causation, or at least correlation. And it gets better. What happens after Mark.09 is destroyed?
Kaworu is able to control Eva-13 and make it stab itself
. Sure, maybe he could have done it at any time. We can’t prove
he wasn’t just sitting around doing nothing for... reasons. But that still wouldn’t explain Shinji suddenly being cut out of the controls earlier. If Shinji losing the controls and Kaworu regaining the controls have the same cause, though, that simplifies things.
What could that cause possibly be? Well…
...how about the Seele program?
If Mark.09 was originally Eva-13’s core, then this could, potentially, make sense. We’re shown with Lilith that body parts that have been separated can retain some kind of connection. Her head, though removed from the rest of her by some distance, is still subject to the influences of the spears; when they’re removed, her head dissolves along with her body. Rei Q’s ability to have a soul that is somewhere other than inside her may also tie into this feature of the NTE universe. If similar principles apply to the Adams — and with Lilith being involved in their creation, I don’t see reason to reject the idea outright — then hypothetically the core could retain a link to the body even after removal and replacement. The applications are precisely what we see on-screen. Split an Adams into two targets; load one of them with the Impact machinery; load the other with a remote-control program that ensures things go as they should, and it can play wingman on top of that.
In the next film, Eva-01 and Eva-13 will likely be key players in realizing HIP, and both of them have also become, in part, Lilith’s body. If disembodied cores can be used to exercise control over the body — or bodies, as the case may be — that they “belong” to, then imagine the potential for a Adams’ Vessel based on Lilith’s core. (If the terminology here is confusing: remember that Lilith was taken into Luvah at Second Impact, and as a result she is both an Adams and herself.) Whoever controls such a being would hypothetically be able to harness both Eva-01 and Eva-13! Sounds like prime “penultimate boss” material to me.)
Even if you’ve followed me this far, you must be thinking, “Wait, what? Didn’t you say that Eva-13 was Asuka’s original body? And if Mark.09 is Eva-13’s core, then…??”
Yes! That is exactly
where this is going!Blue Goo
It’s not as though you have to look all that hard for a connection, either. When Mark.09 first lands on the Wunder, and fully shifts over to its “transitional form”, it flashes a neon blue:
And then, when it starts hacking into the Wunder, it does so by dropping glowing bluish tendrils out of its legs, which make their way onto the Wunder’s “engine” (where Eva-01 is):
With any luck, these should remind you of a similar blue glow associated with the 9th Angel, and with Asuka subsequently. Selection of images follows:
Another neat connection here is how we see this blue goo used
— to invasively connect one entity to another. It gets better, though.
Eva-03 uses its arms
to send blue outgrowths into Eva-01…
...whereas Mark.09 uses its legs
to send blue outgrowths into the engine of the Wunder — thus, also
^ (By the time Mark.09 is taken out, the engine is almost completely blue!)
Also, this COULD just be nothing, but, for the sake of completeness…
Most of the pilots have plugsuits with a round red “core” over the pit of the stomach. The exception to this? Asuka. Her pre-Wille model plugsuits have no “core” feature at all:
Once Mark.09 entered the scene of the “possibly Asuka-relevant”, it occurred to me that perhaps this bit of weirdness about Asuka’s plugsuits actually might
serve some purpose after all, however opaque. Check out our fine friend Mark.09 here:
What color is it? Black with red trim, and some smaller areas with a couple of other colors (green, gray) to break up the tedium a bit. Asuka’s original, core-less plugsuits are, in a way, the inverse: the base color is red, with black as a secondary color. What do we know about Mark.09? Its entire body is, in actuality, made of core. Is the lack of a discrete core on Asuka’s original plugsuits, then, foreshadowing such beings, and Mark.09 in particular? I kind of like the idea, but of course, given Mark.09’s possession of a central core, the fact that Asuka’s suits lack a “central core” as well keep things from lining up completely. (I suppose how well the comparison works depends entirely on how Mark.09's nature is being framed -- i.e., is it "all core", or is it "core on core"? If the former approach is used, then "mostly-red plugsuit with no discrete core element" foreshadows "all-core being" just fine.)
Then, of course, we have Asuka’s Wille plugsuit, which DOES finally give her a “core”… except it’s blue. And she’s the only pilot with a blue “core”. HMMMM
This feels somewhat obviously like a reference to the glowing blue core-like stuff which the 9th Angel introduced us to (referred to as “core-like contamination around the entry plug”). Now, it’s interesting that the word “contamination” was used, since we see in 3.0 that this blue glow is still present in Asuka, and yet…
Eva 2.0 wrote:RITSUKO:
Physiologically, all traces of corruption are gone,
but there is the chance her mind was infiltrated.
This bit of dialogue has, understandably, tripped up speculation about what exactly happened to Asuka. She still possesses corruption from the 9th Angel, but there’s no corruption from the Angel? HUH???
Mark.09 being created from the core that once held Asuka’s soul — as strange as the concept might initially be — actually sheds some light on what’s going on here. See, if the same trait is exhibited by both Urizen’s original spiritual vessel and
by an Angel that comes in contact with Urizen’s soul, then the simplest explanation is that the blue goo was never fundamentally a trait of the 9th Angel at all. Much like the 10th Angel acquiring the ghostly white flesh of Lilith (Rei’s original self) after absorbing Rei into its core, the 9th Angel, too, took on traits associated with the entity whom Asuka had once been. And thus, Asuka wasn't altered -- she was merely awakened to her former self.
I’ll look at that in more detail next time.
(Also, 9th Angel... Mark.09... Damn, I feel dumb for not noticing sooner that they, kind of like Evangelion 13 and the 13th Angel, have a "weird relationship the nature of which is not immediately apparent".)