Theory and Analysis:Dummy Plug Plant Images

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19 C029 eva03-mess.jpg

"When Aoba called B Wing's construction sloppy he hadn't seen anything like THIS!"
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One of the most mysterious aspects of how Evangelion became the show we know today is the Tank Images. When the home video version of Episode 23, known as Episode 23' or the Director's cut or NPC version, was prepared, mysterious images were added which flashed off and on in the Rei Tank in the background. When they went back and remastered Ep. 23 for Renewal, these images were removed, making the scene resemble the Originally Aired version. We have been unable to find the reason they were removed, but it could simply be because they were hard to see and distracting. The other changes still stood, e.g. there were still many more Reis in the tank. Thus the Renewal/Platinum version of Episode 23 is sort of 23'.1. This article will examine the Tank Images, identifying the easy ones, (these are mostly ones that were lifted from elsewhere in the series, or re-used in the Extended Opening), will theorize about the ones that aren't so easy, and will admit that some can't be made heads or tails of. Ritsuko's dialog will also be provided. Some of the images have "clean" versions from the Extended OP, Series OP or Episode 21. These will be included for comparison purposes.

A modified version of the clip which has been filtered to mostly remove the Rei clones from the scene and make the overlayed images more visible can be seen here.

The Images

Ritsuko: "The things here are dummies. And nothing more than parts for Rei."

Screenshot Notes Dialogue Screenshot
This first one is easy: Adam being excavated in Antarctica. "Humanity found a god and, in their joy, tried to make it theirs. And so they were punished." Tank image 01 Adam.jpg
A closer angle on the above. - Tank image 02 Adam.jpg
Tank image 02a Adam.jpg
This is Adam in Giant of Light form during Second Impact. "That was fifteen years ago. The god they had gone to such lengths to find also vanished completely." Tank image 03 giant.jpg
OP C069 b big.jpg
The Wings of Light unfold over the doomed Katsuragi Expedition. - Tank image 04 wings.jpg
Tank image 04a wings.jpg
A satellite view of Second Impact. - Tank image 05 impact.jpg
Tank image 05a impact.jpg
A newspaper article on Second Impact. - Tank image 06 news.jpg
Tank image 06a news.jpg
The United Nations demands answers. According to the script, the man in the foreground is the U.N. Director. As it appeared in Episode 21, Keel and Gendo can clearly be seen in the background. "But then they tried to revive the god on their own." Tank image 07 investigate.jpg
Tank image 07a investigate.jpg
There are four men in this picture, standing around a large piece of paper laid out flat. Their heads form a diagonal line starting just to the right of the upper left corner. Two of them have their hands resting on the paper. The rightmost man is most detailed, wearing a jacket, his arm extended towards the paper. There appears to be scaffolding in the background. The second image to the right has been filtered to partially remove the Reis. - Tank image 08.jpgTank image 8 filtered.png
All anyone can see here is bubbles, or perhaps enlarged molecules. - Tank image 09.jpg
This is Lilith's Head, upside down. - Tank image 10 lilithhead.jpg
Tank image 10a lilithhead.jpg
In this image, Eva-01 is literally growing on Lilith. "That god was Adam. And, from Adam, humans were created in her image. Those were the Evas." Tank image 11 bunshin.jpg
Tank image 11a bunshin.jpg
A low angle on the above. Shinji: "People? They're humans?" Tank image 12 closeup.jpg
Tank image 12a closeup.jpg
This is the Secret Dead Sea Scrolls from the opening credits. Ritsuko: "Yes, they're human." Tank image 13 dsscroll.jpg
Tank image 13a dsscroll.jpg
This seems to be a group of men in heavy overcoats or parkas trudging through the snow. Perhaps they are investigating second Impact. - Tank image 14 parkas.jpg
There are three men in this picture, standing in a semicircle. A bearded man's head is visible near the upper right of the image. Another man, wearing glasses, is about a third of the image to the left - his arm is extended towards a round object below the bearded man. A third man is shown in profile in the bottom left - he also has his arm (wristwatch visible) reaching under the bearded man's head. The second image to the right has been filtered to partially remove the Reis. "The Evas do not intrinsically have souls, but human souls reside within them." Tank image 15 beard guy.jpgTank image 15 filtered.png
This is the Russian Soyuz 11 space capsule docking with Salyut 1. Two men in parkas have been added to the image, standing beneath the spaceship. See this animation of the comparision.

Found via Orgsun's blog

- Tank image 16 soyuz.jpg
Soyuz docking with Salyut 1 revolved.png
The blob near the top of this image resembles a brain. The second image has been filtered to mostly remove the Reis. The third image is slightly blurred to remove them completely. - Tank image 17.jpgTank image 17 filtered.pngTank image 17 filtered alternate.png
A man reading a book, which is opened to a page that seems to show embryos in various states of development. Is this tome a part of the Dead Sea Scrolls that explains Angelic Anatomy? "They were all salvaged." Tank image 18 tome.jpg
This seems to be a drawing of sunflowers. - Tank image 19.jpg
The American, French, and British Seele comitteemen.

This image is based upon a photograph of James Jeans, Walter Adams, and Edwin Hubble at the Mt. Wilson Observatory.
- Tank image 20 seele.jpg
Tank image 20a seele.jpg
James-adams-hubble mt-wilson.jpg
This image shows more bubbles. "The only vessel that contained a soul was Rei. " Tank image 21.jpg
This one is well nigh impossible to see. Someone please tell us what it is. It seems to exist only in this version. Some people see the blob in the lower right corner as a woman in an ankle length skirt, but this seems a lot less likely when you see the shot in motion. There is, however, a tile floor visible in the lower right, and there seems to be writing of some sort over the Rei in the upper right. (The one looking back over her shoulder.)

If anything, the filtered version of this image by Someguy only deepens the mystery. A circular area, pit, or "pool" is visible in the center, with what may be rocks or people at its edge in the foreground. Some kind of crane or machinery is seen in the centre of the "pool". There may be foliage to the left of the "pool". To the top left, a stretched pyramid structure is very clearly visible. At the top right, there appear to be buildings(a farm?).

Needless to say, the image remains a complete mystery.

- Tank image 22.jpg

Tank image 22 filtered A.png Tank image 22 filtered B.png

This image shows another brain, this time in an x-ray or CAT scan. - Tank image 23.jpg
This one seems to be a model of molecules. - Tank image 24.jpg
This is the most remarkable, and hardest to understand, of all the tank images. This is Fuyutsuki's report on Second Impact, but it has a different photograph clipped to it. (The original was a picture of the Giant of Light.) This change must have been deliberate. It seems to show an object floating in water. There is nothing else here to provide scale, so we can't even judge its size. It's unknowable what this thing is, but as it's clipped to Fuyutsuki's report, it must have some connection with Second Impact. Here are two likely theories:

1. One possibility is that it is Misato's escape capsule, but it doesn't seem to be remotely the correct shape for this.

2. As it is likely that Second Impact scattered Adam's embryonic children about the world to begin their incubation period, it might be an egg-case containing an Angel, the Adam Embryo itself, or even Kaworu. (Or perhaps both the last two, as there appear to be two connected bodies in the photo.) Some believe the scale of this image is on the cellular level.

In the absence of any other proof, these must remain theories.

The third image on the right has been filtered to partially remove the Reis.

"She was the only one born with a soul. " Tank image 25 report.jpg
Tank image 25a report.jpgTank image 25 filtered.png
This looks like one of the large steel doors in Nerv Headquarters. You can see the number "42" written on it. "The Chamber of Guf had been emptied." Tank image 26.jpg
Yui speaking to a man in glasses (A technician?) before her Contact Experiment. The outfit she is wearing, which resembles a prototype Plugsuit, is refered to in the script as a "Divesuit". Thus it seems it was specificly designed for contact experiments rather than piloting. It seems to be equiped with wings. "The Rei-like things here have no souls." Tank image 27 farewell.jpg
Tank image 27a farewell.jpg
A close shot of the above. - Tank image 28 closeup.jpg
A photograph of Yui on a report of some sort, possibly her obituary. In the full opening version, part of the Eva graveyard is visible in the background. "They're just vessels." Tank image 29 id.jpg
Tank image 29a id.jpg

This is the end of the images.