|by Sadamoto Yoshiyuki / GAINAX|
KCA12-1 volume 1
KCA12-2 volume 2
Kadokawa recently has been bombarding the market with titles that have
been turned into anime shows and anime that has been converted back into
the manga format. SLAYERS, GUNDAM X, TENCHI MUYO, ESCAFLOWNE, B'tX, and more
can be found in prime spots at the local Japanese bookstores. And now
under their "A" series, Kadokawa is releasing compilations of the SHINSEIKI EVANGELION manga.
|Initially the manga is very similar to the
plot of the anime with subtle differences. For instance, in the manga's
initial escape scene with Misato and Shinji driving away from the
attacking Angel, Rei in Unit 0 engages the Angel briefly before the
N2-mine was dropped. The anime didn't introduce Unit 0 till much later.
And Shinji's fateful first battle occurs as a real-time event instead
of being shown as a flashback. Many scenes happen in different
locations, and in general the manga contains expanded character
The second volume starts to play with events more. Stage 11-12 in the manga can easily be directly compared with episode 4's "Hedgehog's Dilemma" plot. For example, in the anime we see Misato drive to the station (after a conversation with Ritsuko) and wait silently outside when she sees him on the empty platform and expects him to board the train. In the manga, she races to the train station from her apartment (after a conversation with Kensuke and Toji), hurries onto the platform and stops Shinji just before he boards the train. The manga is not a direct "film comic" but more a new look at the same story.
The artwork itself is very clear and easy to follow. Sadamoto Yoshiyuki has done an excellent job in reproducing on paper the character style he used in the TV anime, and he retains a constant quality throughout the volumes. The actions scenes are especially well done, and the flow of motion is easy to follow. The kana is sharp, and all the kanji has furigana alongside which is certainly a benefit to those learning Japanese.
Overall, EVANGELION is a compelling story, mixing standard robot elements with a intriguing plot and interesting characters. To those interested in joining the world of EVANGELION, or if you are an EVANGELION veteran wishing to add something new to your collection, I definitely recommend this series to you.
--Mark L. Johnson