After a weekend marathon, I have finally seen the original version of Evangelion (episodes 16 - 26); time for some thoughts before diving into the director’s cut episodes.
Well, that certainly was… something. Now, I understand why there is so much director’s cut material after this. The push to the end was hurried and mashed together quite a bit of mythology and philosophy. As the final credits rolled, I felt that the series didn’t quite play fair with its audience on one level. There were a number of elements about the Angels, Seele, etc. that were MacGuffins that worked against the story.
On a different level, I think I understand what Anno was going for with this series. The mythology, religious symbology, etc. are all backdrops to explore individuality and how one defines and creates their own sense of identity. This is certainly not the first time this concept has been explored in any medium, but Eva does put its own unique twist on how it explores the idea.
But it comes down to deciding just how well the series did and assigning a final grade. I have my leanings at the moment and am very curious how the director’s cut episodes compare. Visually, Eva was stunning, but my mind is still trying to determine how the story stacks up.