Wednesday, October 30, 2013

The anime world has heard of nothing else but Neon Genesis Evangelion.

Okay, I'm almost positive I'm going to step on a lot of toes with this review.

Ever since its debut in 1996 in Japan, the anime world has heard of nothing else but Neon Genesis Evangelion. Fans and otaku immediately fell in love with Gainax's newest controversial production featuring unique mecha design, characters, and an enigmatic story. The growth of popularity for this series has far outstripped anything else, including Sailor Moon and DragonBall Z.

Many have gone as far to claim that Neon Genesis Evangelion is the best anime that has ever been made.

I disagree.

Don't get me wrong -- I'm not saying Evangelion is bad by any stretch of the imagination. There are a lot of really good things about it, and it's a series that I definitely enjoy watching. But there are some things about it that really grate on me, that keep me from giving this good title the best rating possible.

Well, let's actually do some reviewing, okay? Like mentioned before, Evangelion includes within it some truly striking art and animation. The mecha designs are a departure from the tried-and-true Giant Robot template as only Gainax Studios can deliver. While perhaps not the most technically outstanding of productions, the style of execution make Evangelion a drama that stands head-and-shoulders above most else that is out there. Classical scoring pumps up the drama. Stills and pans capture crucial moments in the action. And the occasional "artsy," inscrutable angle helps add to the many questions the series poses as it progresses.

The story of Evangelion, however, is what most fans remember most about the series (besides the trademark Gainax fanservice, of course). Evangelion pumps up the "secret agenda" card as far as it could possibly go, with every episode posing at least two or three more questions for every one question they answer. Just what are the Angels?

What is NERV (or Gendou) really after? Who the heck is Adam, and what's this Human Complement Project everyone's talking about? And does Rei have a personality somewhere in there? This is definitely not a series to watch out of sequence, and piecing together the story is at least half the fun.
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