ANIME TOP TEN (LIST #1) - #9: Neon Genesis Evangelion (1995)

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Director(s): Hideaki Anno
Script: Hideaki Anno, Akio Satsukawa, Mitsuo Iso, Yoji Enokido, Yoji Enoto, Shinji Higuchi
Music: Shiro Sagisu
 
Neon Genesis Evangelion is more than an anime title, it's a far-reaching phenomenon. It won the first Animation Kobe Award in 1996 and it's consistently on top 10 lists throughout anime fandom. It's not a perfect show. It's actually a little overrated. The main narrative can be schizophrenic and there are elements left out you can only get information on through secondary sources. However, it's conceptually solid. What Evangelion is really about, past the giant bio-androids, the giant monsters, and the often weird visuals, is communication. The problems the characters face are all due to poor communication, by being separate entities who have to make an effort to reach out, making themselves vulnerable to each other. Shinji Ikari (Megumi Ogata) is a boy who has trouble communicating what he means, and so he shies away. Asuka Langely Sohryu (Yuko Miyamura), on the other hand, compensates by being outwardly social, but inwardly insecure, looking always for validation. I watch Evangelion as more of a character study than anything else. The action can be good from time to time, but it's a secondary quality. Evangelion is a concept-driven show more than anything.