Mari Makinami Illustrious

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Mari Makinami Illustrious
Mari
真希波・マリ・イラストリアス
Affiliation(s) Unknown third party(2.0), Wille (3.0)
National Heritage British[1]
Birthday Unknown[2]
Seiyū Maaya Sakamoto
Voice Actor (English) Trina Nishimura
(German): Jennifer Weiß

Mari Makinami Illustrious (真希波・マリ・イラストリアス) is an Eva pilot and third party operative introduced in Evangelion 2.0: You Can (Not) Advance. She is a stylized brunette with glasses and "twin tails".

Profile

Mari is shown to have an enigmatic personality. Out of all the pilots, she is the only one who admits that she genuinely enjoys piloting. Her repeated comments suggest that she has a liking to the smell of LCL. She also appears to have reduced inhibitions and even identifies Shinji as a pilot in their first encounter by crawling up to him on all fours and sniffing for the smell of LCL. It is implied that Mari works for an unknown third party. A pilot designation has not been provided, assuming Mari officially has one (in-universe).

In combat, she is extremely aggressive and despite her inexperience, she is shown to be an expert pilot on the level of Asuka, if not higher. Her first engagement with the Third Angel used no tactics whatsoever but saw her attacking the Angel head-on, chasing it outside of the base and pinning it down before self-destructing. She also appears to be aware of the Evas' sentient nature to some extent, going so far as to directly addressing them in a compassionate tone and even whispering goodbye to Eva-05 after its destruction. This makes it unlikely that she was the one who sabotaged it, although her being an acquaintance of Ryoji Kaji is suspicious.

When Zeruel attacked Tokyo-3 at the end of the movie, Mari launched Eva-02 with IPEA assistance to engage in battle, intercepting the Angel inside the Geofront while dual-wielding pallet rifles. Unlike Asuka's repeated attempts at damaging the Angel in the series however, Mari quickly gave up on ranged attacks and went into a screaming charge with a Thunder Spear, leaping onto the Angel and firing Eva-02's needle guns in an unsuccessful attempt to penetrate the Angel's AT-field with a point-blank attack. In the English dub, she is quite foul-mouthed, constantly taunting her opponents while piloting.

She also demonstrated considerable knowledge about the inner workings of Evangelions by activating Eva-02's Beast Mode (which resembles a "controlled berserk"). During this, she demonstrated a bloodthirsty, animalistic behavior not unlike that of the Eva, and despite the heavy damage sustained, she never once attempted to retreat but pressed her attacks until her Eva was damaged beyond combat capability.

Mari uses two distinct plugsuits over the course of the film. The first is the unusual green and white suit that appears to be custom-built for Eva-05, with different material on the limbs (corresponding to the Eva's mechanical prostheses) and three green tubes attached to each wrist (probably involved in the "forced synch" with the prostheses). The second plugsuit, worn for Mari's sortie in Eva-02, is a pink one with white trim very similar to Kaworu's. Despite her change in Evas, her new plugsuit still bears a 05, suggesting it may have been intended for use with that unit.

In Evangelion 3.0: You Can (Not) Redo, Mari is the pilot of Evangelion Unit-08 and a member of Wille. She is shown to have a playfully belligerent relationship with Asuka; Asuka frequently refers to her as "Four-Eyes," while Mari refers to Asuka as "Princess." Mari is first seen providing sniper backup for Asuka during the battle with the Evangelion Mark.04 units during Operation US. Later, when Asuka cannot reach Unit-02 in time, Misato sorties Mari in Unit-08 against Evangelion Mark.09. She manages to shoot off Mark.09's head, but this does not stop Rei Ayanami from escaping with Shinji.

Mari once again provides sniper fire cover for Asuka during the battle against Evangelion 13 in Terminal Dogma, as well as providing her with spare batteries and a container for the 12th Angel within Evangelion Mark.06, as Asuka tries to stop Shinji from pulling the Spears. She also interacts with Rei, advising her to escape from Mark.09 before it turns into a Vessel of the Adams. When Rei is unresponsive, Mari expresses her opinion that Rei's "original" was nicer. Mari recognizes immediately that the awakened Evangelion 13 is really a surviving Adams as Fourth Impact begins. She is assigned by Asuka to attack Evangelion 13, but fails to reach it before Kaworu Nagisa dies in a failed attempt to stop the Impact. In order to stop Fourth Impact entirely, Mari forcibly ejects Shinji, telling him to help Asuka and get to know the world. Unit-08 is later picked up by the AAA Wunder along with the wreckage of Unit-02.

Mari's new plugsuit in 3.0 is similar in coloration to her second plugsuit from the previous film, though it now bears a 08 to reflect her new status as Unit-08's pilot. She also has new glasses that have rectangular frames instead of her previous pair of rounded glasses.

Mari Makinami Illustrious
Mari's first closeup in the 1.0 preview.
In first plugsuit
Mari prepares for her first outing in an Eva.
Bidding Eva-05 farewell.
Mari formally introduces herself to Shinji Ikari.
Under Beast Mode influence.
Holding conference in Evangelion 3.0 preview.
New glasses in 3.0.


Name

Mari is named after the post-World War Two destroyer Makinami (itself named after a World War Two era destroyer Makinami (巻波, "overflowing waves")) and the British aircraft carrier HMS Illustrious. The two names may be intended to, as in Asuka's case, represent a mixed heritage: here, British and Japanese (at minimum). Strictly speaking, neither "Illustrious" or "Makinami" (written as 真希波, "noble true wave") are real surnames[3], although this may be nothing more than a creative liberty.

Her first name was originally unveiled in the Nintendo DS Petite [email protected] game.[4] Later, one of the official movie posters included a "teaser" for her full name: showing the "Mari" part, and substituting the remaining characters with asterisks ("*** Mari *******")[5]. Mari's entire name was at last revealed in a revised version of the poster included with the first issue of Eva Extra[6]. Before her actual name surfaced, Mari was known exclusively among fans as "Glasses Girl" (among Japanese fans, めがねのこ, megane no ko, meaning the same thing).

Appearance in the Manga

In the extra chapter of the manga, it is revealed that Yui Ikari and Mari were classmates, and the two became close friends as students under Fuyutsuki. Yoshiyuki Sadamoto has, however, clarified in an interview that the extra chapter and Mari's inclusion in it should not be seen as a part of neither the manga nor the Rebuild series' storyline, stating that it was something he purely did for "fun", comparing the chapter to "fanservice".[7]

Mari in the Manga
Yui is shown giving Mari a new look.
Yui addresses the girl as Makinami Mari.


Production History

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"Making something... Nurturing something is really great. You can see and learn so many things from the process."
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Unrealized scene of Mari watching the 10th Angel's destructive mayhem.

Mari's character has a tumultuous development history, with Chief Director Anno knowing little more of his intent for her than that he wanted her to "destroy Eva". Director Kazuya Tsurumaki ended up shouldering much of the responsibility for Mari, and Yoji Enokido was also recruited during a writer's retreat to provide an outsider's opinion. Much of the disagreement revolved around how (and how much) to integrate Mari into the preexisting Eva framework, and the nature of her personality. At one point, Mari was to do little more than appear in the pre-title Third Angel sequence and to later observe the Tenth Angel's destructive power (the latter idea shown in the first movie's trailer for Ha). Various ideas were tested in early script drafts and storyboards wherein Mari took over part of another character's role from NGE, eventually abandoned due to the desire to give Mari her own identity. Enokido's suggestion was that Mari should provide a rival for Asuka who ultimately usurps her. Enokido wanted to go so far as to have Mari become the main pilot for Unit 02, say anta baka to Shinji and even kiss him, though this was eventually discarded by Anno and other writers. In another concept for Mari that was never incorporated into the finished film, she would have owned numerous cats and had tattoos of them on her arms and legs. The fact that Mari occasionally punctuates her speech with "nya" (the Japanese equivalent of "meow") may be a reference to this abandoned idea.

Notes & References

  1. The booklet that comes with the 2.22 DVD release states that Mari was born in the United Kingdom.
  2. If they used the "seiyuu's birthday" rule as they did with most of the other characters, it would be 03/31.
  3. Google searches for "真希波" only yield results related to Mari's name, indicating that "Makinami" written this way is probably an original invention for this character.
  4. DS game screen shots
  5. Website version of promotional poster.
  6. Promotional poster with revised terms list.
  7. https://wavemotioncannon.com/2017/02/21/the-current-status-of-gainax-interview-hiroyuki-yamaga-yoshiyuki-sadamoto-september-2016/


  • As she approaches the Angel in Bethany Base, Mari sings part of the song "The 356-Step March" by Kiyoko Suizenji:

マリ「しあわっせはーあるいってこないだーからあるいってゆっくんだねーん 
いっちにっちいっぽみーかでさんぽ
 さーんぽすすんでにっほさっがるー 
じーんせいはっわんつー!ぱんち・・・

Shiawase wa aruite konai, dakara aruite yuku 'n da ne
Ichinichi, ippo. Mikka de sanpo.
Sanpo susunde, niho sagaru
Jinsei wa, one-two-panchi...


Mari (singing): ♪ Happiness doesn't walk to me, because I'm walking to it
One day, one step. Three steps in three days
Three steps forward, two steps back
Life's a one-two punch... ♪


Characters
Main characters: Shinji Ikari | Rei Ayanami | Asuka Langley Soryu
Nerv staff: Misato Katsuragi | Gendo Ikari | Ritsuko Akagi | Kozo Fuyutsuki | Ryoji Kaji | Maya Ibuki | Makoto Hyuga | Shigeru Aoba
Classmates: Toji Suzuhara | Kensuke Aida | Hikari Horaki
Other characters: Kaworu Nagisa | Yui Ikari | Naoko Akagi | Kyoko Zeppelin Soryu | Dr. Katsuragi | Keel Lorenz | Pen Pen
Rebuild of Evangelion: Asuka Shikinami Langley | Mari Makinami Illustrious | Sakura Suzuhara
Miscellaneous: Minor Characters | Minor Characters (Rebuild) | Extracanonical Characters
Theory and Analysis: Name Origins (Warships) | Designs | Relationships | Profiles
Resources: 2015: The Last Year of Ryohji Kaji