Evangelion VS RahXephon your thoughts.

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Postby Dr. Nick » Sun Aug 09, 2009 3:41 pm

Xard wrote:Well... Gundam. Trouble for me is that I can't say how influential this was outside its genres of scifi and mecha.


I'm talking about general cultural significance, signified by things like the Bandai museum, the Gundam bar, Odaiba's life-size Gundam statue, Towards The Realization Of Gundam, "The agriculture ministry is not in charge of Gundam" and, of course, Daisuke Enomoto dropping the ISS on us.

These things don't seem particularly genre-specific to me.

As I said I really don't know about order between Yamato and NGE. I just rewatched ep 11 of Haruhi and got hit on head just how goddamn Annolike framings and editing occasionally were. Other such "duh should've mentioned in the post" example would be SHAFT shows...


Haruhi had quite a few Gundam references, by the way. In fact, I haven't encountered any reference-based spoof anime that features Eva but not Gundam; actually those two series are oftentimes "paired together" in mecha spoof sequences, for example in Pani Poni Dash and Zetsubou Sensei.

Kind of like many formal things in e.g Citizen Kane or in Birth of Nation existed beforehand: but it was only after these things were utilized exceptionally perfectly and organically in these films these techniques exploded to cinema. So I'd say it still is NGE's influence as these methods and formal flashes of brilliance only became vastly influential with Eva although Anno had used similar things in his previous works...


How very true. Some works simply make the pre-existing elements to "click" in a new way.

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Postby Eva Yojimbo » Sun Aug 09, 2009 11:44 pm

Dr. Nick wrote:I'm talking about general cultural significance
Yeah, but isn't that a bit like saying that Star Wars is more "culturally significant" than Citizen Kane? It kinda depends on what part of the culture you're referring to.

Dr. Nick wrote:How very true. Some works simply make the pre-existing elements to "click" in a new way.
It's not so much clicking but about synthesizing; in the case of Kane it took the innovations made in content, mise-en-scene, and editing made by Griffith, Lang, Murnau, and Eisenstein and put them all to work while further innovating how these things could be used in conjunction. I'd argue NGE did much the same way; drawing influences from all over anime but also extending itself far outside the limiting contexts of anime to create an infinitely richer work than anything that had been attempted up to that point. IOW, it's possible to trace all of its individual elements back to sources, but its ultimate synthesis is something quite extraordinary and unique.
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Postby Gendo'sPapa » Mon Aug 10, 2009 10:21 am

Off topic insert:

You know, I love Hideaki Anno's style of directing but there is one thing I gotta say, his use of using people's body parts is an odd but effective way to frame the shot.

Though damn,does this make Anno the KING OF THE SIDE-BOOB!?

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Postby Eva Yojimbo » Mon Aug 10, 2009 2:04 pm

Gendo'sPapa wrote:one thing I gotta say, his use of using people's body parts is an odd but effective way to frame the shot.
Experimental framing techniques through objects/other subjects seems to be a peculiar trait of Japanese cinema (Ozu and Ichikawa immediately spring to mind); not that it isn't used elsewhere, I just seem to see that particular usage more in Japan. It's likely derived from their art as many of the Japanese directors had artistic backgrounds as well (I know Ichikawa did). I believe there's a technical term derived from the visual arts that describes the particular method of framing the subject by other objects or subjects - I thought I'd heard it described as "Negative Space" but after looking that up on Wikipedia I found that couldn't be it (unless the person who used it that I heard was also incorrect).
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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 Dr. Nick » Mon Aug 10, 2009 2:32 pm

Replying to some of Xard's stuff on page 4. Later pages come later.

Xard wrote:If it wasn't for Eva Serial Experiments Lain would've never been greenlighted


Is there a source for this piece of info, or are you just elaborating? I'm sure Eva made it easier for DEEP anime to get greenlighted, but it seems to me it's also a matter of having the right industry connections. After all, somebody still funded the highly experimental ending of Orguss, and the space vagina fest of Hanappe Bazooka.


Fact is that NGE is Shakespeare of anime.


I don't think you can say, "this work of art equals this artist". You could say Evangelion is, for example, the Great Gatsby of anime, because of all the sexual metaphors in it.

Eva's lanky designs forever changing mechas.


As usual, Eva didn't invent lanky bio-mechs/monsters - Dunbine and Jakio did that earlier - but it certainly popularized the concept. I'd say Dual and Brain Powered are two shows where Eva's influence on mecha design is pretty apparent. Take a look at dem bots (and TEH Rei).

The antithesises here and there such as Martian Successor Nadesico which wouldn't exist without eva.


But Nadesico mainly trolled Getter Robo. It was primarily a commentary on the very earliest super robot shows and the concepts of hot-blood and courage winning over all odds.

after eva it became dominating that heroes were rooted in fortress of sorts and are subjects of attack instead of being the "offensive" side in conflict.


What sort of "offensively oriented" shows are you talking about? I've seen a couple of the truly old series, and it is usually not until the final arc(s) that the heroes take an offensive stance and storm the enemy castle. The first three quarters are usually either base camping (Voltes V, Dancougar), or running away (original Gundam, Ideon). Zambot 3 was a sort of a crazy mix, I'll admit that.

As for all the camerawork stuff, I admit that I know next to nothing about cinematography. I had heard about the 180 degree rule, but I understood it better after watching Paprika, which tells quite a lot about my level of expertise here. Because of this, it would be super swell if you could, perhaps in cooperation with Yojimbo, to create a small screencap presentation on these visual techniques and camera angles and whatnots that Rahxephon recycles. The wiki could really use something like that, something along the lines of "If Rah gives you a certain Eva vibe, perhaps this is a bigger reason". It could include some illustrative examples from other shows as well, like those Haibane Renmei gimmicks you mentioned.

And this isn't page 4 material, but I forgot to mention this in my previous post.

Within mecha genre Gundam is hands down most influential series ever... but overall? I don't know. Kind of like Minky Momo has been ripoffed ad infinitum since it came out (far more than Gundam or Eva ever has been) but its influence hasn't really reached that far outside its own genre as far as I know.


Funny you should mention Minky Momo, which is a magical girl show. Consider Nanoha, which is a pretty recent, very high profile magical girl series. It's also so Gundam it's utterly hilarious - Nanoha's clothes even have the same classic color scheme, and she eventually earns the nickname "the White Devil". And massive bricks were shat towards the end of StrikerS when she
SPOILER: Show
summoned some funnels for extra firepower.
.

oOoOoOo
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Postby oOoOoOo » Mon Aug 10, 2009 2:36 pm

LiLi wrote:*I'm guessing I was thinking of the painting by KLIMT, the 'Three Ages of Woman' - hence Eva being an old crone in my analogy...! :blush:
You get two magical O-points, one for being in total agreement with me, and one for referencing Klimt. ^_^
~ O-chan is soooo 2D right now.

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Postby Dr. Nick » Mon Aug 10, 2009 2:51 pm

oOoOoOo wrote:
LiLi wrote:*I'm guessing I was thinking of the painting by KLIMT, the 'Three Ages of Woman' - hence Eva being an old crone in my analogy...! :blush:
You get two magical O-points, one for being in total agreement with me, and one for referencing Klimt. ^_^


Hours in MS Paint.

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Postby Eva Yojimbo » Mon Aug 10, 2009 11:48 pm

Dr. Nick wrote:Because of this, it would be super swell if you could, perhaps in cooperation with Yojimbo, to create a small screencap presentation on these visual techniques and camera angles and whatnots that Rahxephon recycles.
It's usually in conjunction with similar content; e.g. those bloody hand shots (though that's not an example of a unique Annoism, as Xard would call it). Like I said, I think it's a combination of both. If you go on EvaXephon and look at things like the framing on the battleship it's really hard not to think of ep. 8 of NGE. I've seen a few animes that took place (at least partly) on ships like that and I didn't get the same vibe. There are others like "explosion knocks hero down" that seem pretty general until you notice that Rah framed the shot the same way as Anno.

Wasn't it Anno who said "NGE is a copy of a copy" which, if that's true, is Rah simply a copy of a copy of a copy? See, after reading about (I haven't seen) Raideen that kind of similarity doesn't seem as egregious because it's a very clear allusion and, really, a respectful one. For me in Rah there's a certain kind of cumulative effect in the similarities the two share. It's quite possible most could be coincidences or Rah could be drawing from something else entirely different or they could both be working of tropes and cliches (which is also likely) but I think it's hard to say that there aren't some more peculiar similarities that can't help provoke one to think of NGE. I admitted that seeing Rah the second time long after I saw NGE they weren't nearly as noticeable and disturbing, but they were still there.
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 Dr. Nick » Tue Aug 11, 2009 2:16 pm

Replies to some of Jimbo's stuff on page 5. Sorry for the confusing reply-format, but I can't swallow this thread's runaway tail end all at once.

Eva Yojimbo wrote:
UrsusArctos wrote:Evaxephon is junk. Don't fall for it so easily.
Not entirely (see rest of thread).


Off-hand, I'd say the site's about 70-75% crap. Of course, by typical internet standards it is quite factually accurate, but then again, it has an explicit Rahxephon-bashing agenda, which kinda lowers its usefulness as a source of any kind.

Ornette wrote:It's too bad that EvaXephon guy's first thread in ANF got blown to oblivion.


Wait, there was another thread? I probably missed it altogether. Oh, why must Animanation purge all the finest troll threads?

Eva Yojimbo wrote:
Ornette wrote:They were also mostly from mecha anime pre-Eva.
I'm confused... do you mean shots like the bloody hand were also mostly from pre-NGE mecha anime?


Do I know any scenes that feature bloody hands similarly framed? I don't remember seeing any. Scenes where the main character is shocked by the sight of blood and violence? There's plenty. When the main character of Voltes V learns about his sick, sad family history, he does some serious hand-staring.

A good example of an older series featuring some shared gimmick first would be the pyramid-shaped HQ building. I've heard such a building appears in Blue Comet Layzner (1985) and I plan to include it to the wiki once the series is fully subbed and I've watched it.

Eva Yojimbo wrote:
oOoOoOo wrote:I've seen "shot of blood on hands" in plenty of works,
Examples? And, more specifically, any examples of ones that use it as a symbolic motif?


Do you think Rah uses it as a symbolic motif, by the way?

Well, I'll be in a state of skeptical disbelief until someone actually does provide some evidence that some of these more specific things aren't shared exclusively between these two shows.


Can you give me a specific list of those things that you think might be unique to these two shows, so I'll know to keep my eyes open for them? Bloody hand from a similar angle is one. What else?

I mean, could someone provide 17 pages of similarities between NGE and Gundam or any other mecha series even if we did stretch our concept of a similarity?


Using Evaxephon's standards? I dare say that would be laughably easy. In fact, ANF member Quiddity did exactly that. It's not 17 pages long, but all it needs is some elaboration and screencap filler:

Quiddity wrote: Last summer I found this interesting anime. After watching most of the series I was astounded by all the similarities it has to Evangelion...

I think I'll start with the main character. Lets call him 'Bob', although thats not what his actual name is. Bob is a Japanese teenager, just like Shinji. It is stressed early in the series that he has been seperated from his parents often, especially in recent times. In the first episode of the series Bob is in a city under attack by an enemy threat. Intense damage is dealt to the surroundings and there are many casualties. Bob ends up getting into the cockpit of a powerful robot and uses it to save everyone, just like Shinji. Unfortunately for Bob, he essentially finds himself forced into a powerful military organization, just like Shinji was essentially forced into NERV. Being just a teenager, Bob certainly isn't suited to the life of a mecha pilot. He is put under a lot of stress and often times doesn't want to pilot the mech. Sometimes he can't take it anymore and blatantly says he will never pilot the mech again. When he finds the situation that this decision puts his friends in though, he reluctantly returns to his duty. Bob is often in conflict with his superiors, especially a certain male authority figure. Sound familiar? Thats not all.

At one point in the series Bob is put over the edge. He commits treason against the organization much like Shinji did when he threatened to destroy NERV HQ. After this situation is settled, Bob is thrown in a cell, just like Shinji was. Despite that act, he is eventually brought back to good terms with everyone else. Like Shinji, Bob is unconfident in his abilities in the beginning, but slowly gets used to it and realizes he is better than he originally thought. There is a period when this puts him and trouble, and Bob becomes overconfident in his abilities. Luckily, this particular thought soon goes away. Bob has an odd relationship with his father, who happens to be the one that built the mech he pilots, just like Gendou built Unit 01, which Shinji pilots. Their relationship is so bad that his father cares more about the mecha than his own son. There is also a part in the series where Bob is removed as the pilot of the mecha and is replaced with a female pilot (just like when Shinji was replaced with Rei as the pilot of Unit 01). This doesn't work out, and things go back to normal. I'd say that pretty much makes Bob a Shinji ripoff, don't you think?

While the similarities between Bob and Shinji is the biggest thing that made me think this show was an Eva ripoff, there are other things out there as well. For example, in this show the 'good guys' base their survival on 3 mechas, just like in Evangelion. By the end of the series, all 3 of these mechas are rendered useless, just like in Evangelion where Units 00 and 02 were destroyed and Unit 01 drifted off into space. There are multitudes of scenes that just scream out "Eva ripoff!". One of the adversaries wears a mask that looks like its taken right from Keel Lorenz. Late in the series, our hero has a battle with a skull faced enemy that shoots beams out of its mouth. Reminds you of Zeruel, doesn't it? In one scene near the end of the show our hero's mecha is dismembered and decapitated, just like what happened to Unit 02. There's another scene that seems like its taken straight out of the movie. Enemy troopers burst into the headquarters of our heroes and kill many, but their mission ultimately ends up being a failure and they are unable to take the main part of the base. Another part that I can recall being reminded of from the movie is when a suicidial blond attempts to blow up our heroes HQ by sacrificing herself. She fails however, and is killed, just like what happened to Ritsuko in the end.

Alright, I think thats enough. I've cited enough examples to prove just how similar these two animes are. I think its time I reveal just what this anime I've been talking about is.

Mobile Suit Gundam

Yes, that Mobile Suit Gundam. The most famous mecha anime of all time. The Mobile Suit Gundam that just happened to have come out 16 years before Evangelion. I hope this little exercise has shown just how meaningless this 'Evangelion ripoff' discussion is. For a show can hardly be ripped off it isn't original, correct?



I've sometimes entertained the idea of doing something like that with Eva and Gaogaigar, which is often considered to be Eva's polar opposite within the mecha genre. (In fact, I think someone expressed that sentiment earlier in this very thread.) Gaogaigar is a story about a group on non-angsty adults battling an alien menace like the trained professionals they are. The most famous quotation from the series is probably "Victory goes to those with courage!" which sums up the show's attitude really well. Still, it would be easy to make it look like a cheap Evangelion rip-off, like this:

*Religious references: Gaogaigar features important characters named Cain and Abel. The titular mecha's final attack is called Hell and Heaven. Evangelion rip-off.

*Enemies can only be killed by hitting a spherical weak point: Angels can only be killed by destroying the core, which is spherical. Zonders can only be destroyed by removing and purifying the zonder core, which is spherical.

*Non-human enemies are actually humans: Angels are actually humans (revealed at the very end). Zonders are actually humans (revealed in the first episode).

*Main antagonists with monoliths: The members of Seele appear as 12 black monoliths. The Sol Masters stand on top of 11 black cubes.

And it goes on and on and on...

For me, it's not so much the broad similarities or even the specific ones (I think "hand on breast", "mecha swallowed by shadow", "hell train" are more disturbing) but rather the resonances these things gain over the course of the show.


For me, the specific and unique ones are the important ones, since I think of them in terms of how to wikify this info for the fan community. I understand well what you mean by those resonances, though (more about that later).

Plus, I don't think we can discount the initial and intuitive reaction people have to Rah.


True, but the rip-off crowd takes the similar vibe reaction way over the top. Did you see what happened when season 2 of Code Geass came out? There was immediately some idiot here screaming OMG hivemind Eva rip-off oneone!, even though the "rip-off" in question was, in fact, a variation of the trusty old Jupiter gimmick that's so widely used by Sunrise that it's basically their company trademark (most recently, it was self-consciously used in Soaring Cake Girl).

I haven't seen Raideen, but, even still, I don't think that intuitive connection can be dismissed as false.


Raideen is still being subbed. Old mecha is a super niche genre in the west, after all, even we've started to get proper subs only recently, thanks to pioneering fansub groups like Anime Classic, /m/subs, Shin-Getter and various heroic one-man-groups.

Like I've said, it think it's a fair assumption that Raideen references in Rah are quite different than Evangelion references in Rah. Based on just things I've heard, those Raideen references are quite big, specific and plot relevant, and not as subtle and cinematography-based as the Evangelion refs.

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Postby Eva Yojimbo » Wed Aug 12, 2009 5:58 am

Dr. Nick wrote:Off-hand, I'd say the site's about 70-75% crap. Of course, by typical internet standards it is quite factually accurate, but then again, it has an explicit Rahxephon-bashing agenda, which kinda lowers its usefulness as a source of any kind.
Hmmm, I'd have difficulty estimating its "general instances of extreme dubiousness" to "genuinely interesting moment of apt comparison" ratio; 5:2-3:1 former/latter ratio sounds about right. Honestly, I never saw it having an "Rah bashing agenda"; the guy himself claimed he liked both series and just found them similar. I never saw any hostility from him regarding Rah in the posts I read from him. I think some people just have the false notion that if you're comparing one work to another in terms of similarities that you must be "against" one or the other.

Dr. Nick wrote:Scenes where the main character is shocked by the sight of blood and violence? When the main character of Voltes V...
Well, that's just it, I'm sure there are plenty of films/series where characters stare at their hands for some reason, but to put the hand in the frame like that with a substance which is supposed to both give us an idea of the characters emotions in the context of their situation, plus act as a motif which will develop later to make a thematic link, then that's a bit differently. Though, admittedly, the symbolic agenda in Rah is merely in the distinction between red/blue blood, human/Mu while in NGE the symbolic counterparts and progression encompasses a whole lot more.

Dr. Nick wrote:Can you give me a specific list of those things that you think might be unique to these two shows, so I'll know to keep my eyes open for them?
Well, the guy falls on girl with a hand on her breast is a major one. Another one is the hell-train. The former is one of the more peculiar similarities, while with the latter I recognize that trains are a general motif throughout anime and Japanese cinema, the fact that both utilize them for the psychological "mind trip" scenes is enough to make the connection. More I'd point out are how the scenes on the battleships are framed with the characters and how they react (they're both VERY similar). The shadow swallowing Angel/Dolem is another similarity. They both have a space Angel/Dolem that's defeated in similar ways (shooting an arrow, throwing the LoL); now, this last thing I'm willing to admit might be a trope. The bow-and-arrow was taken from Raideen, but did Raideen ever have a similar occurrence?

There are more, but my mind is fuzzy since I haven't been through all pages of EvaXephon in a long time.

Dr. Nick wrote:Using Evaxephon's standards? I dare say that would be laughably easy. In fact, ANF member Quiddity did exactly that. It's not 17 pages long, but all it needs is some elaboration and screencap filler:
Hmmm, will read more thoroughly later...

Dr. Nick wrote:Still, it would be easy to make it look like a cheap Evangelion rip-off, like this:
Well, then it becomes about just what constitutes very broad/general and peculiar/unique analogs. Obviously, two series can use a similar symbolic frame of reference but be used in entirely different ways for different purposes. But what about if the dialogue is the same? Characters with very similar personalities? A scene which the context is almost the same? I'd say what categorizes a true example of a valid analog is how many connections can be made between the two. By saying they both "use religious references" that's a very broad thing, but if you can say that the two use the same ones, or use them in similar ways or in similar situations, THEN it becomes more of a valid connection.

Most of the links on EvaXephon are, again, broad, general, and not detailed (emotional outbursts; we know NGE invented that), but there are some where the links are stronger and the analogies less general and more specific.

Dr. Nick wrote:And it goes on and on and on...
Well, get 17 pages and then we'll talk. ;)

Dr. Nick wrote:but the rip-off crowd takes the similar vibe reaction way over the top.
Agreed; I was guilty of that overreaction when I first saw it. More time and analysis revealed that they were less similar than I'd initially imagined, but I still think they are similar enough to be compared relevantly.
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 Ornette » Wed Aug 12, 2009 7:38 am

Eva Yojimbo wrote:Honestly, I never saw it having an "Rah bashing agenda"; the guy himself claimed he liked both series and just found them similar. I never saw any hostility from him regarding Rah in the posts I read from him. I think some people just have the false notion that if you're comparing one work to another in terms of similarities that you must be "against" one or the other.

He changed a LOT of his wording on his website since he'd been to ANF. According to the thread that we did manage to archive, that was posted on July 2006, a few days after he registered the domain and created the website. This explains some animosity from the other people at ANF when he showed up with his website. Archive.org doesn't have anything older than 2007, so unfortunately we don't have a record of what was there before.

Also, "guy falls on girl who just left the shower, hand lands on breast" is old. There was an 80's OVA that had the same thing, maybe it was Justy or Madonna? That may have even happened in Kekko Kamen, I can't remember. I'm sure there's plenty of other instances, although those were comedy oriented. They had no qualms about showing full frontal nudity back then.

But what about if the dialogue is the same?

You should check the Japanese first. There's been plenty of "connections" made in the past about homages or rip-offs going both ways where the English translation happened to be exactly the same but the original Japanese was different.

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Postby Eva Yojimbo » Wed Aug 12, 2009 9:01 am

Ornette wrote:He changed a LOT of his wording on his website since he'd been to ANF.
Fair enough; I was only going by what he wrote on the website. Do you recall any particularly inflammatory remarks he made about Rah?

Ornette wrote:those were comedy oriented.
Yes and, as I said, the context is very important. Is there a serious example before NGE?

Ornette wrote:You should check the Japanese first. There's been plenty of "connections" made in the past about homages or rip-offs going both ways where the English translation happened to be exactly the same but the original Japanese was different.
This certainly wouldn't be my area of expertise...

<-Does not know Moonspeak.
Cinelogue & Forced Perspective Cinema
^ Writing as Jonathan Henderson ^
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Postby Dr. Nick » Wed Aug 12, 2009 2:01 pm

Kutta wrote:The Missionaries of Evangelion ought to be tricksy, sharp and cautious


Wait, The Imperialist actually managed to recruit someone to his cult?


oOoOoOo wrote:For instance, if we want to talk about "bloody hands", which Anno supposedly invented or something, when that scene came up in Rahxephon, I definitely was not reminded of Evangelion, even though I've watched Eva more than any other series.

To break down the "feel" of each show, I'd describe it as such:

NGE: Slow paced, sense of dread, layers removed one by one.
RAH: Free-flowing musical feeling, lyrical, dreamy.


This is a good illustration of how these intuitive gut feelings and first impressions work. They differ from person to person, a lot. Personally, the beginning of Rah certainly gave me quite a strong Eva vibe, but it only lasted for a few episodes; later on, when the bigger references like the hell train and those two actually angelic dolems appeared, I recognized them, but the show as a whole no longer "felt" like Eva. I guess the unique parts of the story had started to sink in, and my internet preconditioning to lose its effect.

oOoOoOo wrote:EDIT: Soft-serve ice cream will be reaching my throat in 2-3 business days.


There are numerous much shittier ways to spend your money.

Eva Yojimbo wrote:Part of it - and I said this in my Rah review - is that I think I went directly from watching NGE like 6 times to Rah so the similarities stood out like a sore thumb much more.


Try watching The Matrix a couple of times in a row, and then watch Megazone 23. You'll be shitting bricks, even though the rational part of your brain knows that Megazone came out first.

Eva Yojimbo wrote:the real question is "are the connection there". I'd say "Yes", but probably to a degree that's between the "Rah is a complete ripoff of NGE in every detail" and "Rah is in no way shape or form influenced by NGE". In fact, I'd say the truth is dead in the middle.


This is what I try to tell to those rip-off kids whenever a new one appears here, but damn if it isn't an uphill battle.

scarmullet wrote:After watching RahXephon for the first time, let me put this on the table; What if RahXephon was originally written as a dōjinshi for Eva, and as the story developed, the writer just changed a few minute details (character names, designs, and setting) and created an original work.


Now that's a strange question to make. It depends on what happens in the original doujin, obviously. If it deviates from the source material like a motherfucker, and then the last remaining links are severed, obviously no-one would know. Wolf and Spice could be a mutated Eva doujin, for all we know. Or a Rahxephon doujin.

Eva Yojimbo wrote:
Dr. Nick wrote:I'm talking about general cultural significance
Yeah, but isn't that a bit like saying that Star Wars is more "culturally significant" than Citizen Kane? It kinda depends on what part of the culture you're referring to.


By "culturally significant" I meant "appears in totally unrelated and very mainstream contexts a lot, despite being old as hills by anime standards". (Here's the most recent piece of bizarro Gundam news, BTW.) In other words, I guess I was referring to the meme's vitality. Kane and Star Wars are both obviously god-tier by such memetic standards, so it's very difficult to say which is more pervasive: for example, both are apparently amazingly quotable. I wouldn't be surprised if Star Wars was a little more well-known, though, since Welles failed to capitalize on the commercial potential of that damn sled. Imagine the toys!

Eva Yojimbo wrote:I never saw it having an "Rah bashing agenda"; the guy himself claimed he liked both series and just found them similar. I never saw any hostility from him regarding Rah in the posts I read from him.


Personally, I don't think amazing trolling just happens innocently and by accident.

Eva Yojimbo wrote:I think some people just have the false notion that if you're comparing one work to another in terms of similarities that you must be "against" one or the other.


Genuine comparison sites are great. I would post a link to that The Matrix vs Ghost in the Shell site, but apparently their web server has caught on fire. However, like Ornette said, Evaxephon's site is not a proper comparison site, but a crowbar-like tool made to convince people that Rahxephon is a palette-swapped carbon copy of Evangelion. I'm not the man's psychologist, so I can only guess why he would want to do that, but his site is agenda-driven to the extreme.

Eva Yojimbo wrote:Well, the guy falls on girl with a hand on her breast is a major one.


It could be a reference, but I wouldn't call it a "major" one by any stretch. Even with the same camera angle, it's the most cliched anime comedy routine ever. The rest of your list is pretty much what I expected, and my duke-nukem-forever-eventual wiki entry expansion should deal with all of those. I guess I should re-watch Rah for that purpose, as well.

Eva Yojimbo wrote:Well, get 17 pages and then we'll talk.


Can I have too separate entries for "Gendo clone", too?

Eva Yojimbo wrote:Do you recall any particularly inflammatory remarks he made about Rah?


I think that what infuriated people the most about him was that, like all great trolls, he never gave in an inch and defended his hilarious hyperboles to the bitter thread-lock end.

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Postby Ornette » Wed Aug 12, 2009 2:07 pm

I don't remember any inflammatory remarks either way. But everything was worded in a way that spewed "ZOMG Rah took everything from Eva, it's an exact copy, there's nothing original in it", which makes it seem Rah bashing, or at least seemed that way because it copied Eva. He's since added a lot of cushion words like "seems to" and "may".

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Postby Merridian » Wed Aug 12, 2009 2:11 pm

Eva Yojimbo wrote:context is very important.

Yes. Which is why one reason the seventeen pages of evaxephon’s “similarities” aren’t valid. Some of them are (the attack sequences at the very beginning of the series, for instance, bear some resemblance, and both are using similar frames of reference), but many, if not MOST, of them aren’t at all relatable.

Comparisons between series like these are instances were quality is more important than quantity—evaxephon gives ya plenty of screen shots, but few of them are valid enough to be of any use. Many of them aren’t valid because the scenes depicted simply do not bear a resemblance (“Shinji assumes defensive position!”& “Ayato assumes a defensive position!”… but the positions do not resemble each other and aren’t framed similarly; the only similarity is that they’re defensive because something just blew up—something that happens in every other action-oriented TV series/movie on the planet). Other shots simply lack the appropriate context for comparison—the aforementioned hand-thing that keeps coming up, along with (I’d say) the breast-grope thing.

And then there are instances of shots that simply shouldn’t even be compared. Drawing a comparison between Reika standing in front of a window and GNR, for instance, lacks both the appropriate context AND the appropriate resemblance (they both have wings? I don’t think that’s near enough to warrant this kind of comparison). Drawing comparisons to how arms are crossed over chests in the opening credits would also fall into this category, as would comparing an AT-Field to the Absolute Barrier of Tokyo-Jupiter.

All I’m saying is that a site like evaxephon can’t be taken with very much merit. RahXephon does borrow some things from Eva, but a lot of what I get out of that comparison goes back to what Xard submitted a few pages back. Granted, I do see some similar character dynamics going on (Misato x Kaji x Shinji x Asuka tangle thing loosely compared against Haruka x Itsuki x Ayato x Megumi, for instance, but even that has enough divergent aspects to be somewhat unfair), but I freely admit that I haven’t seen things like Mobile Suit Gundam, Voltres V, or just about any other mecha-anime that could be named.

oOoOoOo
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Postby oOoOoOo » Wed Aug 12, 2009 2:36 pm

Victory for Merridian! Destroy this thread before it is too late.
~ O-chan is soooo 2D right now.

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Postby Dr. Nick » Wed Aug 12, 2009 3:54 pm

Holy coincidence Batman!

After writing my previous post I started watching some Gall Force, and in the first episode of the Earth Chapter (made in 1989), there's this scene: The heroes do battle against a new type of enemy mecha, and once they manage to immobilize it with great difficulty, the main character goes a bit psycho and needlessly empties several magazines worth of ammo into it. In the process she gets all stained by its bluish bodily fluids. And so we are treated a typical Gall Force style angsty shower scene, where the main character, you guessed it, stares at her blood-stained hands.

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Postby Eva Yojimbo » Thu Aug 13, 2009 3:52 am

Dr. Nick wrote:By "culturally significant" I meant "appears in totally unrelated and very mainstream contexts a lot... Kane and Star Wars are both obviously god-tier by such memetic standards... I wouldn't be surprised if Star Wars was a little more well-known, though, since Welles failed to capitalize on the commercial potential of that damn sled. Imagine the toys!
Hehe, Rosebud toy sleds! I can see it now! What I meant was basically what you said about Star Wars being MUCH more pervasive in "appearing in unrelated and mainstream contexts"; Kane almost never does. Kane's influence is almost entirely limited to the context of film as an art-form, while SW is a much larger cultural phenomenon that certainly isn't limited to appealing to film-buffs. Most people have heard of Kane, while most have seen Star Wars, most might have heard the famous line of "Rosebud", but fewer would know what it's from than "May The Force be with you.". But isn't NGE quite a cultural phenomenon as well? I don't think many here could accurately compare its influence to Gundam in Japan, but I know I've seen A LOT of NGE stuff in mainstream Japanese culture (even if it's just the marketing).

Dr. Nick wrote:Even with the same camera angle, it's the most cliched anime comedy routine ever.
But that's the thing; in both it's NOT played for comedy. NGE's usage COULD be comical if it wasn't for the extreme and realistic awkward and uncomfortable way in which it's portrayed. Rah turns it into a more overt psychological scene.

Dr. Nick wrote:Can I have too separate entries for "Gendo clone", too?
Does EvaXephon have that?

Dr. Nick wrote:I think that what infuriated people the most about him was that, like all great trolls, he never gave in an inch and defended his hilarious hyperboles to the bitter thread-lock end.
I don't think that's necessarily the mark of a troll and I don't think that kind of comparative analysis (even if it's bad) is the mark of a troll. I know people's definitions will differ, but my definitions tend to be much more severe and strict than most, as I've been accused of "trolling" before when I wasn't doing anything differently than what I do around here (which is debate assuredly). But, then again, I didn't read the entire original thread (I did read some of what was saved in the ANF archives) and I don't think it was bad enough to be trolling from what I remember.

Dr. Nick wrote:a typical Gall Force style angsty shower scene, where the main character, you guessed it, stares at her blood-stained hands.
A different framing, and I don't know if it's a motif in the series, but the angsty-angle fits.

Ornette wrote:I don't remember any inflammatory remarks either way. But everything was worded in a way that spewed "ZOMG Rah took everything from Eva, it's an exact copy, there's nothing original in it", which makes it seem Rah bashing, or at least seemed that way because it copied Eva.
It's usually easier to tell if someone is proclaiming "rip-off! Plagiarism! Copy!" as a means of denigrating a work instead of just comparing them with a general interest in both. I can't make a definitive statement any way, but all I'm saying is that I don't recall the least bit of Rah bashing on EX's part even if others might have taken it that way. Sometimes mistaken impressions can combine with other mistaken impressions and the cumulative effect is a large mistaken impression about something that doesn't really exist, and some people DO have the mistaken impression that any kind of comparative analysis exists to denigrate the work that came after. Again, I'm not saying that's what happened, just that it's a possibility.

Merridian wrote:Yes. Which is why one reason the seventeen pages of evaxephon’s “similarities” aren’t valid.
What I mean is a full understanding of the contexts of each; it's not enough to say that "this aspect of the context isn't the same so the comparison isn't valid". Let's look at it on a spectrum, with each link representing a peg or percentage of "similarity of context and content"; 1 being the most general and archetypal similarity and 10 being the most detailed and connected similarity. Most of the EvaXephon comparisons range in the lower half of that scale, while a few might reach into the upper half. I think the real question isn't "are they similar" but "how much are they similar" and "does that similarity constitute enough for a valid comparison" and "does that valid comparison make it fair to say that Rah 'stole' from NGE" and "if, indeed, we can say Rah 'stole' from NGE, how much and to what degree?"

I see this is a much more complicated most than most, because with something like, say, The Matrix and Ghost in the Shell it's easy to see that the similarities lie on the lower half of that scale, which makes the similarities more interesting in terms of finding the latter's influence in the former, but you can't ever reach into "rip-off" category. With NGE and Rah I don't think it's so clear; there are a lot of similarities, but there are disagreements over just how similar these similarities are; the similarity of the contexts seem to differ wildly. For me, with something like the "hand on breast" thing one could still find differences and say "but that's been used in comedic anime forever", but these aren't comedies, and the way they're used is similar and given the awkward, psychological take on both it's hard not to say a similarity like that hits the upper range of that scale. And, as I said, more people make a clear intuitive connection between them, which I don't think can be so easily dismissed. I had quite a bit (though clearly not as much as someone like Ornette) with mecha before NGE and Rah, but Rah never reminded me of, say, Gundam or Big O or... the way it reminded me of NGE.

Merridian wrote:Comparisons between series like these are instances were quality is more important than quantity
Well, not necessarily because an accumulation of minor similarities should be taken into account. For instance, the character analogs; "Stern commander that runs elite group created to battle invading beings, has a white-haired 'side-kick', son is the main pilot, with a sassy female operations commander who has a strong relationship with main pilot, and another sassy red-haired girl who has relationship with pilot, and a mysterious girl who also has a relationship with him and the mysterious beings."

Most of these, taken individually, are generic mecha/anime archetypes, but how many other animes have ALL of these things in common? Yes, if we view each in a fuller context there are many differences between how they're used in both works, but I don't think these differences automatically invalidate the similarity, it simply weakens each individually on that spectrum-of-similarity I talked about above. However, I DO think they gain an accumulated strength by the fact that ALL are used in BOTH series. Now, if someone can point me to another mecha anime that shares ALL of these traits, I'll be rather surprised.

Merridian wrote:I do see some similar character dynamics going on (Misato x Kaji x Shinji x Asuka tangle thing loosely compared against Haruka x Itsuki x Ayato x Megumi,
And I definitely think that's there as well; I also think the Rei/Quon similarity is relevant, even though the mysterious girl is a standard trope.
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Postby Merridian » Thu Aug 13, 2009 10:36 am

Eva Yojimbo wrote: it's not enough to say that "this aspect of the context isn't the same so the comparison isn't valid".

It’s plenty enough when you try to look at “Reika stands in front of window with wings. Rei gets huge and naked and sprouts wings” as being a serious comparison. The only context this comparison might have is the ‘wings’ aspect, but even THAT is flawed because GNR actually HAD wings, and Reika was just standing in front of an etched window. I was surprised at how many screen caps on evaxephon had this kind of terrible misappropriation of context.

As for the “hand on breast” thing… Rei was naked, Haruka was not. Ayato jumped at her, from across a table, and for some reason acted shocked when he felt her up, but the in-universe context didn’t make any sense—it’s not like he walked into her apartment while she was bathing and threw on a pair of her favorite glasses. Now, the way the scene is structured and shot gives ME the impression that the RahXephon creators wanted to allude to/pay homage to/rip off Evangelion, but apart from the way in which it is portrayed, there isn’t anything to compare. There isn’t even any ‘awkwardness’, since the Haruka apparition is enjoying Ayato’s groping, whereas in Eva, it was Rei’s was apathetic/ disdainful glare and Shinji’s reaction to it that really cemented the awkward atmosphere.

Right off the bat, there are a lot of things that seem like they’re Eva rip-offs, but the more I started to really look at it, the harder I found it was to compare this stuff. Granted, Rah does use a lot of similar motifs—the phones, the hell train, mysterious ghost girls—but it also has a tendency to invert many aspects of Evangelion to suit its own agenda—the abovementioned “hand on breast” scene is actually a pretty good example of that. This is one of the things that can be related back to Xard’s long-ass post about ‘Anno’s alphabet’ and its impact on the medium; aside from some character dynamics (many of which have quite possibly been pervasive though anime since long before Eva, but I wouldn’t know), most of RahXephon will LOOK like Eva simply because of framing & editing techniques, and when the creators specifically structure whole scenes similar to Evangelion, it adds to the audience’s willingness to call it a rip-off.

Eva Yojimbo wrote: the character analogs

That does bear mentioning, but I’ve noticed a lot of that sort of thing pop up an many post-NGE works—Elfen Lied is CHOCK-FULL of them, so much so that I can’t really take the series seriously (well, that and the level of overcompensating melodrama).

Eva Yojimbo wrote: ALL of these things in common

Plenty, and the reason is because most of evaxephon’s “similarities” simply ARE NOT VALID—many of the things he relates to each other correlate neither cinematically nor thematically to the material, and most of the rest are shared tropes that both series use. Very few are valid comparisons that come down to “Well, THAT probably was a direct Eva rip-off”. There are some, mainly in character dynamics (as I mentioned previously), but that alone is most certainly not enough to fill 17 pages.

My whole point is that evaxephon bears no merit. There are similarities between Eva & Rah, I’m not disputing that. I’m disputing the fact that evaxephon keeps popping up as a valid source when its analytical techniques are flawed beyond reasoning.

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Postby Eva Yojimbo » Thu Aug 13, 2009 12:32 pm

Merridian wrote:My whole point is that evaxephon bears no merit. There are similarities between Eva & Rah, I’m not disputing that. I’m disputing the fact that evaxephon keeps popping up as a valid source when its analytical techniques are flawed beyond reasoning.
Fair enough. I don't think I have any more to add here beyond what I have. Unless someone is willing to go through both and do a more serious comparative analysis (I know I'm not).
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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
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