Neon Genesis Evangelion: Hedgehog's Dilemma   First Watch 
June 29, 2019 11:53 AM - Season 1, Episode 4 - Subscribe

Frustrated by his newfound responsibilities, Shinji runs away from Misato and NERV. After being escorted back to the organization by armed officials, Shinji must decide whether he truly wants to abandon his role as a pilot.

The original title for this episode is "Rain, and After Running Away"
posted by fifteen schnitzengruben is my limit (22 comments total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
 
I just love how the scene where Shinji decides not to leave plays out. He just... doesn't get on the train. Misato takes a while to notice, and when she does the episode just ends. This show is so good at providing a satisfying narrative resolution while denying the kind of emotional catharsis that viewers are used to.
posted by tobascodagama at 12:44 PM on June 29 [6 favorites]


I love how long they let that scene go. It’s almost Tarkovskyan.
posted by rodlymight at 5:25 PM on June 29 [4 favorites]


This episode was way more emotionally intelligent than I remembered, and the additional context of Hideaki Anno working through his depression with this show is so evident here. I think the Waypoint podcast's ep 1-2 discussion brought up that Anno set out to make something about not running away and I kept thinking about it as I watched this ep.

The sound of those cicadas was so overwhelming! So evocative (and terrifying!).
posted by rather be jorting at 8:34 PM on June 29 [1 favorite]


I still don't get the boy-logic of "punch me so we can have emotional closure and I can alleviate my guilt over punching you first," but I'm glad it worked! Evangelion, stevangelion.
posted by rather be jorting at 8:35 PM on June 29 [2 favorites]


> This show is so good at providing a satisfying narrative resolution while denying the kind of emotional catharsis that viewers are used to.

thank you for putting words to this phenomenon, I've been scratching my head about it all evening.

I'm not loving some of the characters pronouncing NERV as "nay-rv," but I think they might be trying to go, uh, German (??) because of SEELE.
posted by snerson at 9:59 PM on June 29 [1 favorite]


Red Thoughts recaps :

*BOY EMBRACES THE VOID*
*BOY GOES CAMPING*
Hmm, the boy seemed pretty cut up after that traumatic robot angel murder that we forced him to do. Better send some faceless G men for him instead of showing the barest skerrick of human kindness.
*INTIMIDATION OCCURS*
Get in the robot.
I really don’t want to.
RIGHT WELL FUCK OFF THEN. SUMMON THE G MEN. GET IN THE VAN, BOY.
posted by His thoughts were red thoughts at 11:05 PM on June 30 [3 favorites]


I'm not loving some of the characters pronouncing NERV as "nay-rv," but I think they might be trying to go, uh, German (??) because of SEELE.

And they subtitle it "Nerv" instead of NERV, which is if anything even more frustrating.
posted by Holy Zarquon's Singing Fish at 10:22 AM on July 1 [1 favorite]


The thing that is really driving me nuts is how they keep saying ‘children’ instead of ‘child’ in the new dub. Who did the voice direction on this? It’s obviously grammatically wrong, it’s not something that you need to be an otaku to realise.
posted by His thoughts were red thoughts at 4:04 PM on July 1


Apparently the problem is the original Japanese uses the specific English word "children" instead of a Japanese word when referring to the various numbered childs. The earlier dub brought it up that this sounds weird and bad in English, and were (supposedly) given the go-ahead to change it. This dub opted to be a more literal translation and kept "children" even though it sounds awkward as hell.
posted by Mr.Encyclopedia at 4:14 PM on July 1 [3 favorites]


The new dub and translation were both supervised by Studio Khara (Anno's post-Gainax studio), FWIW. Apparently, he really wanted the original dub to use "children" as well, but ADV fought him on it and won.
posted by tobascodagama at 5:28 PM on July 1 [2 favorites]


I watch it subbed and hadn't been paying attention when they say "[number] children", I just figured the translation is wrong. I'll try to pay attention next time to see if they actually say the English "children" in the Japanese audio.
posted by numaner at 10:33 AM on July 2


They do.
posted by tobascodagama at 11:20 AM on July 2 [1 favorite]


It's pretty common for Anime and other forms of Japanese media to indulge in a form of reverse-orientalism where western words and folklore are mined and used in contexts that seem weird to people familiar with western culture. I guess it's something to keep in mind the next time talk of cultural appropriation comes up, even if using the word "children" in a weird context is an extremely mild example. If you insist on taking something from another culture and using it to spice up your artistic work, there's a good chance you're going to mess up the context and at least make something awkward if not outright offensive.
posted by Mr.Encyclopedia at 12:14 PM on July 2 [2 favorites]


It's pretty common for Anime and other forms of Japanese media to indulge in a form of reverse-orientalism where western words and folklore are mined and used in contexts that seem weird to people familiar with western culture.

What? A minor translation error is not culturally appropriative in any way, shape or form.
posted by His thoughts were red thoughts at 2:48 PM on July 2


It's not just the word "children," though -- Evangelion is laden with western/Christian cultural artifacts that are just there to sound or look cool.
posted by Holy Zarquon's Singing Fish at 2:50 PM on July 2 [3 favorites]


Oh, totally. I agree with Mr.Encyclopedia that NGE is a great example of cultural appropriation, since the show's eschatology has about as much to do with actual Kabbalah or Christianity as, say, the vaguely pan-Oriental mysticism in Doctor Strange does with actual Tibetan Buddhism.
posted by tobascodagama at 4:19 PM on July 2 [2 favorites]


Yeah literally the entirety of NGE is a totally bonkers appropriation of Christian mythology WHICH IS AWESOME
posted by weed donkey at 7:14 PM on July 2 [4 favorites]


Also no offense fifteen schnitzengruben but when are you going to post more episodes? or should I? Because I'm literally on episode 20 now and I NEED TO TALK ABOUT IT.
posted by weed donkey at 7:15 PM on July 2 [3 favorites]


Thanks for the reminder!

Stay tuned for Rei I and II!
posted by fifteen schnitzengruben is my limit at 7:40 PM on July 2 [3 favorites]


Done! Rei, Beyond the Heart and Decisive Battle in Tokyo-3 are now live.

At this pace it will take a while to get to Episode 20, but I think there's a lot to unpack here.
posted by fifteen schnitzengruben is my limit at 9:10 PM on July 2 [2 favorites]


Another example of context being provided with what is basically background audio, with the movie where no one is really paying attention (like the history class in the prior episode). My favorite (dramatic) line:

Doctor, It's easy to die. But you have an obligation to watch the hellish world...

Which also plays into this episode, with Misato Katsuragi playing the role of the unnamed person who won't let Shinji (as the Doctor) go out in EVA 01 if he's not out to fight and win, but she gives him the out to walk away.
posted by filthy light thief at 7:34 AM on July 9 [1 favorite]


Bonus references, from EVA Geeks (beware spoilers):

* The two songs we hear Shinji listening to on his SDAT while riding on the train are "You are the only one" and "Blue Legend" from "Lilia", an image album (Wikipedia) for the "Ys" RPG series (Wikipedia), previously heard in Episode 02.

* The beautiful mountain that Shinji visits before meeting Kensuke is a famous suicide spot, in the real-life Ōwakudani area. Ōwakudani is the area around a crater created in the last eruption of Mount Hakone 3000 years ago.
posted by filthy light thief at 8:20 AM on July 9 [2 favorites]


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