Just How Offensive is Eva?

Author: Brian Shea
Source: Anta Baka!?
Dated: May 28, 2002

"There is no actual Christian meaning to the show, we just thought the visual symbols of Christianity look cool."  --Kazuya Tsurumaki, of Gainax

This is a perfect example of people who don't understand Evangelion well enough going to the extreme. Evangelion's well known for its religous symbolism. Tsurumaki said it well. The religous stuff was in there to make the show 'cool'. The only reason its in there was to make the show more popular. Not to add meaning to the show. Not because the producers of the show are Christian/Jewish or wanted to bash those religions. It was used for popularity purposes, little else.

This is why saying religion will keep Eva off TV or religion makes Eva offensive makes no sense whatsoever. I guess it all comes down to the definition of the word offensive. In this politically correct era, the mere mention of the word 'offensive' gets things into trouble. The whole point of the word in the first place has been taken to the extreme. Frankly, what harm does something do by being 'offensive' anyway? Nothing! They're just words! You've surely heard of the phrase 'Sticks and stones will break my bones but words will never hurt me', haven't you? Words are meaningless. How something being offensive does harm to anything is beyond me.

Saying Eva's religious content offends you either means you haven't paid much attention to the show, or you're on the purely insane end of the equation. You know, the people who suspend students in school for shaping a gun with their hands? Something that does no harm whatsoever yet is labeled as something that demands therapy? Anyone who's paid a reasonable amount of attention to Eva knows that its window dressing. Its meaningless symbolism. Symbolism doesn't stress any opinions on the matter. And thats all religion is in Evangelion. Symbolism. There isn't any religious commentary in Evangelion. No promoting certain religions above others. No discrediting of any religions. Heck, outside of NERV's logo and a few lines of dialogue there's no mention of God whatsoever. How can this be comprehended as anything offensive? People love to say religious stuff in Eva would keep in on TV. Most people who would watch it on TV aren't like us. They're not gonna obsess over the show and look over it in minute detail. Most people who would watch Eva on TV don't even know what the Lance of Longinuss is (heck, I didn't know what it was until I saw Eva and did some investigation). If you don't know of something, it certainly can't offend you, right?

Regardless of your beliefs in God, Evangelion should create no problems. Any logical thinking person won't take offense at whats in Evangelion. Its unimportant. Its inclusion was simply to make it popular, not to offend you. Watch Eva with an open mind. Even a preacher shouldn't fear it.