Over the weekend I caught an interesting show on TV which celebrated the Evangelion series by bringing together several of the voice actors into a studio to reminisce on what it was like to make the original series 25 years ago, as well as the more recent movie remakes. How do you safely bring a group of people together for a TV show in the age of Corona? Remotely, of course!
The show was called 全エヴァンゲリオン大投票 Zen-Evangelion Daitouhyou, or All Evangelion Great Voting, because viewers could vote to rank their favorite characters, lines from the show and so on, with the cast members reacting to the rankings in real-time. The show followed the post-virus Japanese TV trend of having guests appear in a variety-type show by using TV screens placed on a set, with video of the guests being piped in from remote sterile studios, or from home via webcam.
The show featured “virtual MC” Takanori Nishikawa, lead of the JPOP group TM Revolution and a famous otaku, along with voice actors Megumi Hayashibara (Rei), Megumi Ogata (Shinji) and Miki Nagasawa (Maya Ibuki) plus otaku idol Shokotan (who sings the Gurren Lagann theme), and for two hours they walked through their memories of Eva.
The show included a section asking viewers to rank their favorite parts of the series, including all the characters in the series. The top ten characters were
- Gendo Ikari
- Maya Ibuki
- Ryoji Kaji
- Mari Makinami Illustrious
- Misato Katsuragi
- Shinji Ikari
- Rei Ayanami
- Kaworu Nagisa
- Asuka Langley Souryu
(In case you weren’t aware, all the names from Evangelion are related to ships. Ayanami, Katsuragi, Akagi, Soryu, Langley, and Illustrious were all ships from World War II. Ikari means “anchor” since Shinji is the central character in the series.)
They also ranked the top lines from the show, the top being, Anata wa shinanai wa, watashi ga mamoru mono. (“You won’t die because I’m going to protect you.”)
After the final voting round, Asuka voice actress Yuki Miyamura phoned in to thank everyone who voted for her and gave her memories of working on the show. “Asuka is such a hard-working girl, always trying hard, trying hard! But while she’s trying to bring about some positive outcome for everyone, she always ends up in a terrible position herself. But the fact that she’s loved and supported by so many fans fills me with happiness.”
The highlight of the show came when Yoko Takahashi sang Fly Me To The Moon on live webcam.
After the show ended, Eva fans were in for another treat: a re-broadcast of a 2017 Eva vs Shin Godzilla symphony performance. The performance featured music from Evangelion and Shin Godzilla, including the original theme composed by Akira Ifukube for the 1954 original film, which was resurrected for Shin Godzilla verbatim as an homage. The performance isn’t available on Blu-ray, but there is a CD available, which you can get through J-List.
I’ve been a fan of Hideki Anno since Macross: Do You Remember Love, Wings of Honneamise, and Aim for the Top! Gunbuster, and I was super happy to hear that he’d be taking over the Godzilla series. While it might not be for everyone — Anno’s obsession with showing individuals working inside organizations and incredibly precise dialogue might confuse some fans at first — it’s a true masterpiece, and the closest thing to a live-action Eva we’ll ever get.
As a card-carrying fan of Hideki Anno, I was thrilled at his Shin Godzilla film, which was pretty much the closest thing we’ll ever get to an Evangelion live action film (that we’d actually want to watch).
Enjoy this mash-up video! pic.twitter.com/1XyBbRSv7z
— Peter Payne (@JListPeter) May 18, 2020
Thanks for celebrating Evangelion and Shin Godzilla with me, and have a great week!
Our customers love the cute Megumi stickers we send with your orders. We’ve got some extra stickers, including rare items we’ve given away in the past, which we’ve bundled up into random sets of 8 Megumi stickers you can get for $5. Hurry, as there aren’t many of the sets available!