Episode 11

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Episode Information
Episode #11
Title 1: 静止した闇の中で
Seishishita Yami no Naka de
In the Still Darkness
Title 2: The Day Tokyo-3 Stood Still[1]
Fuyutsuki Candle.jpg
Written By Hideaki Anno, Yoji Enokido
Directed By Tetsuya Watanabe
First Aired 12-13-1995
Video Release Date 7-5-1996 (Japan-Video/LD), 1-23-2001 (US-DVD)
Angel Appearances Matarael
Eva Sorties Eva-00, Eva-01, Eva-02
Episode chronology
← Previous Next →
"Episode 10" "Episode 12"

Overview

Tokyo-3 comes to a standstill when sabotage knocks out all power, and the personnel must scramble to launch the Evas manually when an Angel appears in the middle of the blackout.

Synopsis

The episode opens as Ritsuko, Maya, and Shigeru Aoba, are doing their laundry[2]. They then board a train and meet Vice Commander Fuyutsuki, who complains that he must meet with the city council that day, even though they are just figureheads and the Magi supercomputers make the actual decisions[3] He also mentions that Ritsuko will be conducting an activation test on Unit-00 that day.

At Nerv HQ, Misato boards an elevator. Kaji runs after her, and despite her pushing the "close" button, joins her. At this time Shinji calls Gendo to tell him that Shinji needs Gendo to show up for a career discussion interview at Shinji's school. Gendo starts to tell him that all those parental duties have been delegated to Misato when they are suddenly cut off. On the elevator, Misato and Kaji realize that there has been a power failure and speculate that Ritsuko might have caused it during the Unit-00 test. In the lab, Ritsuko denies responsibility. Fuyutsuki orders all the emergency power channeled to the Magi and Central Dogma.

Shinji, Asuka and Rei arrive at Nerv and find that their cards won't work to open the gate. Inside, Gendo and Fuyutsuki realize that the power must have been sabotaged. At the same time, the Ninth Angel, Matarael, emerges from the ocean at a point near the former Atami region and heads for Tokyo-3. The JSSDF commanders tracking the Angel[4] get no response from Nerv HQ as the Angel begins advancing inland.

Misato tries to call out of the elevator, but can't get anyone. Aoba also tries to call, but finds that all the phone lines are down. The pilots try to call, but with the same results. Ritsuko and Maya must climb a maintenance ladder to get to the control room. Rei finally thinks to consult her emergency manual; the other pilots follow suit and they realize that they need to get to headquarters. Asuka declares herself the leader and chooses Shinji to crank open the doors manually. Meanwhile, the waiting JSSDF commanders decide to warn Tokyo-3 directly by sending an aircraft[5] with loudspeakers over the city.

Hyuga, who had been picking up Misato's laundry, hears the evacuation order and confiscates a politician's loudspeaker van and heads to Nerv HQ. On the elevator, Kaji tries unsuccessfully to flirt with Misato. In the control room, Gendo, Fuyutsuki, and Ritsuko decide that the purpose behind the sabotage must have been to learn how they would react to it. Meanwhile, under Asuka's leadership[6], the pilots have got themselves lost. Hyuga passes above them in the van, informing everyone within earshot of the attack, but they are unable to get his attention. Rei points out a short cut and they begin crawling through an air vent. Shinji tries to speculate on the nature of the Angels, but Asuka thinks that the question is pointless; if they're attacking, they must be enemies. Asuka then leads them up the wrong path again, opens a door and encounters Matarael face to face before panicking and slamming the door shut. Hyuga reaches the control room and informs them of the Angel's attack. Confident that the pilots will arrive on time, Gendo orders the Evas prepared for a manual launch.

Thanks to Rei[7], the pilots are on the right path once again. Asuka accuses Rei of being the favored pilot, which Rei denies[8]. They begin crawling through a duct once again. Asuka orders Shinji not to look forward and gives him a flurry of kicks to the face when he disobeys. They come crashing out of the vents into the Eva launch area, with Shinji and Asuka landing in a heap, Rei nimbly landing on her feet. They find the Evas nearly ready for launch. Shinji looks on in awe as he sees a side of his father he has never seen before. Gendo is diligently working beside everyone else to insert the Entry Plugs by hand with a pulley.

The three pilots launch and craw into a large horizontal shaft to try to come underneath the Angel. But when they climb into the vertical shaft they realize that Matarael is trying to burn its way into Nerv with highly corrosive acid. They scramble into a side shaft, losing their guns in the process. Asuka comes up with a daring plan: One Eva will be on defense and will block the acid and neutralize the Angel's A.T. Field. The backup Eva will drop to the bottom of the shaft and toss one of the guns to the offense Eva who will open fire as the defense Eva dodges back into the horizontal shaft.

Rei volunteers for defense, but Asuka has reserved that role for herself and gives Rei the backup role. Shinji will be the offense. The plan works perfectly and Matarael is destroyed. The power is restored, and Kaji and Misato, who had been trying to climb out of the elevator, fall into a heap, similar to Shinji and Asuka falling out of the shaft, and the doors open to reveal Ritsuko, Hyuga, and Maya, who all react with disgust. As the episode ends, Shinji once again speculates about the Angels' motives; Asuka thinks that such speculation is meaningless, because there's no way to know why.

Notes

  • This episode marks the first time that all 3 Evas (Eva-00, Eva-01, and Eva-02) are deployed at the same time.
  • Evangelion Unit-00 reappears in this episode for the first time since it was severely damaged in Episode 06, and it has now been repaired and partially rebuilt, with shoulder armor plates like the other Evas, and it has been repainted blue (with white highlights) from its original orange color.
  • We see more of what off-duty everyday civilian life is like for Nerv personnel, when we see them all stopping at a laundromat. As Ritsuko, Maya, and Shigeru do their laundry at the same laundromat, it would seem that they live near each other. Misato forces Makoto to bring her laundry to the laundromat for her.
    • This is the only time in the series that we see the trio of Nerv technicians in their civilian clothes. Shigeru was previously seen to be a guitar fan last episode, when he was reading guitar magazines and strumming an air guitar while in Nerv HQ. Here, he is seen carrying a guitar case on his back.
  • After two episodes of the red-tinted closing credits, the blue credits screen is back.
  • Matarael is said to make landfall in the "former Atami area".
  • Animation goof: in the shot when the JSSDF general puts out his cigarette in an ashtray, the cigarette simply disappears after he puts it down.

Analysis

  • It is never explained who exactly sabotaged the power supply in Tokyo-3, and this remains an unanswered mystery of the series. It could have been Seele, or the Japanese government, or an independent act of terrorism. However, Ritsuko noted that because the loss of power didn't result in Tokyo-3's destruction, it was highly probable that the power sabotage was meant to probe Tokyo-3: by examining the order in which power was restored in Tokyo-3, whoever turned it off would gain a detailed blueprint of how Tokyo-3 and Nerv HQ operate. Having surmised this, Ritsuko created several dummy programs, restoring power to the base out of order, etc. trying to confuse whoever might be trying to gain reconnaissance data on the base. Given that Seele orders the JSSDF to attack Nerv HQ in The End of Evangelion, and at that time Aoba noted to Hyuga that it seemed that Seele had been planning this attack far in advance by cutting Nerv's defense budget, it seems likely that the real culprits behind the power sabotage were Seele.
  • Matarael is probably the weakest Angel in the entire series: it is literally the only one to ever be killed using an Eva's standard-issue pallet rifle, and a single burst at that. It is probable that had there been no power outage and the Evas had been sortied against it normally, it would not have posed a significant challenge.
  • Gendo Ikari, commander of the entire Nerv organization, can be reached from a payphone? What type of security system do they have? Or did Shinji say who he was, and because he's a pilot the call got through? In which case, why would Gendo answer a phone call said to be from his son, if he was so annoyed to get it?
    • Shinji could conceivably have just told the Nerv HQ phone operator his Nerv personnel ID number, thus getting clearance, perhaps anticipating that his father wouldn't have even picked up the phone if told in advance it was from Shinji.

Quotes

  • Ritsuko Akagi: (After the power goes out while she's conducting a test) "...It wasn't me."
  • (The three Children arrive at a closed door inside HQ)
    Asuka: "Okay, Shinji, you're up." (Shinji, struggling to manually open the door)
    Shinji: "Sheesh! You only rely on people at times like this!"
  • (An Officer in the very next scene) "Damn those Joint Staff bastards! They only rely on us at times like this."
  • Ritsuko: (During the power outage) "This is bad. Now the air is getting stagnant. To think this facility represents the most advanced technology on Earth..."
    Maya Ibuki: "But look at the Commander and Vice Commander. Even this heat isn't getting to them at all."
    Fuyutsuki: (standing next to Gendo during the power outage) "It's lukewarm."
    Gendo: (his feet soaking in a bucket of water meant for fire prevention) "Yeah."
  • Fuyutsuki: "The first havoc wreaked upon our headquarters wasn't caused by an Angel, but by another member of our species. Just goes to show."
    Ikari: "Ultimately, the enemy of mankind is mankind."
  • Shinji: "Angels, messengers of God, enemies named after servants of Heaven. Why are we fighting them?"
    Asuka: "What are you, stupid? Strange beings are attacking us. If you're going through a fire, you've got to brush away the embers, of course!"
  • Rei Ayanami: "Man fears the darkness, and so he scrapes away at the edges of it with fire."

References

  1. The English title selected for this episode by Gainax, "The Day Tokyo-3 Stood Still", is a reference to the classic 1951 scifi movie, The Day the Earth Stood Still.
  2. When Ritsuko is picking up her laundry in the opening scene, it can be observed that the laundry she's picking up is just extra copies of her blue shirt and white lab coat outfit (possibly logically answering the question of why "cartoon characters always wear the same clothes"; even Misato wears different outfits during the series).
  3. Curiously, when Fuyutsuki mentions the Magi, Maya replies, "You mean the three supercomputers?," as if they are something she's only heard of. Actually, she works with them every day. Indeed, she's the technician who most often assists Ritsuko in work on the Magi.
    • The English dub seems to try to smooth this over a little by having Maya say "you mean the same three supercomputers we use?", but that may have been just to match the lip flaps, rather than an attempt to hide this flub from the original.
  4. The JSSDF generals refer to Matarael as the "Eighth Angel", even though it is really the Ninth Angel, meanwhile, the Nerv team inside Central Dogma refer to it correctly as the Ninth Angel. This is probably not just a dialogue mistake: it seems that while the top JSSDF commanders know that the first Angel, Adam, is what caused Second Impact 15 years ago, they know absolutely nothing about the secret existence of the second Angel, Lilith, in Terminal Dogma.
  5. The plane sent by the JSSDF to contact Tokyo-3 says it is part of the "Japanese Air Self-Defense Force", abbreviated JASDF. This would appear to be the air force subsection of the JSSDF.
  6. Asuka jumps in and assumes leadership of the group, both when the Eva pilots are trying to get back into Nerv HQ, and during the fight against the Angel. She also puts herself at risk by going on "defense" and getting Eva-02 sprayed with acid. Besides being emblematic of her extroverted and domineering personality, as Asuka herself says out of pride she wants to make up for the perceived debt she has to Shinji for his using Eva 01 to save her while submerged in the volcano last episode.
  7. Rei has been here her entire life and would be more familiar with the layout than Shinji or Asuka.
  8. In Episode 05, it seemed that Gendo doted on Rei, and that Gendo was the only person who actually made Rei happy and responsive. However, in this episode when Asuka accuses Rei of being Gendo's "favorite", Rei says that she knows "all too well" that she isn't favored by anybody. Even in episodes after this one, Rei always seems to brighten up when Gendo is around and is utterly loyal to him. But ultimately, she knows she is just one of Gendo's tools.



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