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Nessa's Thoughts

Just a British girl who reads a bit too much.

Currently reading

The Dead Zone
Stephen King
The Diving Bell And The Butterfly
Jean-Dominique Bauby
Clarissa, or, the History of a Young Lady
Samuel Richardson, Angus Ross
Orange Is the New Black: My Year in a Women's Prison
Piper Kerman
The Cuckoo's Calling
Robert Galbraith
Neon Genesis Evangelion, Volume 1: Campus Apocalypse - Mingming I'm not exactly a hardcore fan of Neon Genesis Evangelion, but I do appreciate its impact on both the Eastern and Western sides of anime fandom. There's so much merchandise for Eva in Japan alone (like these beautiful headphones), and I guess with any merchandising empire, you'll get one or two things that make you scratch your head.Neon Genesis Evangelion: Campus Apocalypse (or its much longer Japanese title of Academic Record of Heaven's Descent) is one of those. Evangelion, in both the anime and manga incarnations features a high school. So... what was the point in making a Catholic High School AU? Seriously? Just... why?Alright, the premise so far is that Shinji goes to NERV Academy in a completely safe version of Tokyo, where Second Impact never happened, and the only angels marauding around are the avenging, winged variants from Abrahamic mythology, not the alien bio-mechs. Well... okay, that just leaves us with the characters, then. Shinji is still aloof and easy to upset, Asuka has a fiery temper, Rei doesn't speak too much, and Kaworu has this otherworldly aura about him. Too bad none of these personalities are interesting enough to build this kind of story around.By this kind of story, I mean that not only is this a high school alternate universe, it's an alternate universe with a secret society. Yeah, you know... some of the students are mysterious, and our main character goes to check out something completely innocently late at night on school grounds, and sees a supernatural fight going down. Then he's introduced into this secret society and there's one member who doesn't believe in him and he's a bit of an outcast to begin with... oh god, it's painting-by-numbers, plot-wise.I know they're trying really hard to make the premise of Evangelion fit around this one setting, but it just... doesn't fit quite right. Like I said before, the Angels are just regular humans who get possessed by an evil force, and the EVA Units are just... a little capsule that gives you the power to manifest your will as a weapon. Kaworu gets his spear, and Shinji gets a hilariously badly-rendered gun that looks like a freaking water pistol. It makes no sense, and feels like the author just desperately trying to shove a square block into a star shaped hole. The art is really nice, though. Everyone's rendered in a really eye-pleasing fashion. That's one of the few positives. I mean, I like the idea of setting Eva in this Catholic school, with all the adult characters being teachers and the conflict being centred around the school rather than the world at large. Gurren Lagann did the same a while ago, and it was pretty fun to read. Campus Apocalypse just seems way too serious, even though the ridiculous premise is just bulging through. A definite 2/5 from me.(This review is also available on my blog: http://book-wyrm.blogspot.co.uk/2013/02/manga-review-neon-genesis-evangelion.html)