A Step Forward Into Terror

about Shin Seiki Evangelion

Made on a small budget and full of obvious cheap still-shots, Shin Seiki Evangelion (or Neon Genesis Evangelion in English) would go on to become of one of the most iconic anime series ever made. What the original anime lacked in animation quality, it made up with its story and depth. Afterward, Evangelion would bring about a new style of mecha anime, a variation away from the typical bulky robotic fighting armor made famous by series like the Gundam franchise.

As controversial as it is groundbreaking, people tend to either love it or hate it. Some who don't understand it find it to be boring, while others get fixated on its use of religious symbols; which Gainax used to give Evangelion an atypical image from other mecha series, and was not meant to imply anything specific. For those who love it, it's a series that never seem to get old, despite first airing in 1995. And of course, with as many new mediums as Gainax has produced in the years after Evangelion's success, how could we even try to forget about it?

Shin Seiki Evangelion's premise is an apocalyptic future (don't forget it was made in 1995!!). In the year 2000, a large meteorite struck Antarctica, wiping out half of the world's population and throwing the remaining inhabitants into a world stuck in a year-round summer season. This was what is known as Second Impact. This was only the public cover story, while the truth was largely covered up by people who know the real reason why the Evangelion Units have to fight.

Starting from the first episode set in 2015, the protagonist, Ikari Shinji, is called by his father to become the pilot of Evangelion Unit 01, one of humanity's only weapons against the Angels, monstrous creatures that have come to attack Tokyo-3. After accepting his job, Shinji meets Ayanami Rei, a fellow pilot, and the personnels of NERV, the organization in charge of fighting the Angels. As the pilots of the Evangelion Units fight and defeat each of the Angels, the secrets kept by NERV are revealed and the real reason behind the creation of the Evangelions slowly come to light.