Shinji Ikari

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Shinji Ikari
Shinji Ikari
碇 シンジ
Rank / Title Third Children
(Rebuild): Third Boy, Specimen "BM-03" (3.0, among Wille)
Affiliation(s) Nerv
National Heritage Japanese
Relations Yui Ikari (mother), Gendo Ikari (father),
Rei Ayanami (related to)
Age 14
Birthday 06/06/2001
Seiyū Megumi Ogata
Voice Actor (English): Spike Spencer (ADV; Amazon)
Casey Mongillo (Netflix)
(Italian): Daniele Raffaeli
(Brazilian): Fábio Lucindo
(French): Donald Reignoux
(Spanish): Victor Ugarte
(German): Hannes Maurer , Christian Zeiger (Netflix)

Shinji Ikari is the main protagonist of Neon Genesis Evangelion and the designated pilot of Evangelion Unit-01. Much of the story of Evangelion centers around Shinji's personal struggles, both with piloting Eva and with his relationships with others.

He is the son of "deceased" Gehirn bioengineer Yui Ikari and Nerv Commander (formerly Chief of Gehirn) Gendo Ikari. After his mother's apparent death, he was abandoned by his father and lived for 11 years with his "sensei," [1] until he was summoned to Tokyo-3 to pilot Eva-01 against the impending Angel threat. He initially lives with Misato Katsuragi; although they are later joined by Asuka Langley Soryu.

Character Summary

Early Years

Shinji as an Infant
Main Article: Episode 21

Shinji is the only child of his father Gendo Ikari and mother Yui. He was born in 2001, in the year after Second Impact. His name was chosen by Gendo. At the age of 3, he witnessed his mother's "death" in her Contact Experiment with Eva-01. A year or so later, while still very young, he was abandoned by his father and sent away to live with his teacher.

Arrival in Tokyo-3 and "Hedgehog's Dilemma"

Main Articles: Episode 01, Episode 02, Episode 03, Episode 04

In 2015, Shinji is summoned to Tokyo-3 by his father Gendo, now the Commander of Nerv. On the way, Shinji encounters the 3rd Angel, Sachiel, and is rescued by Misato Katsuragi. She then brings him down into the GeoFront and Nerv Headquarters, and then to Eva-01's cage to meet his father. There, Shinji is asked to pilot Unit-01 and fight the Angel. Shinji initially refuses, but, after an injured Rei is brought in as a substitute, and after Eva-01 rescues him from falling debris, Shinji resolves not to run away and agrees to pilot the Evangelion.

Shinji's fight against the Angel goes poorly until Eva-01 sustains critical damage and afterward goes berserk. In its berserk state, Unit-01 defeats Sachiel. Shinji suffers temporary amnesia, waking up later in hospital, where he has silent encounters with both Rei and his father. He only recalls the battle later in a flashback.

Arrival in Tokyo-3

After this first battle, Shinji is taken in by Misato, who becomes his guardian. The two live together in Misato's apartment, along with Pen Pen, and Shinji becomes the designated pilot of Eva-01. Although not enthused, he begins training for this role under Ritsuko and Misato.

Shinji is assigned to school in Class 2A, alongside Rei, Kensuke, Hikari, and Toji as classmates. Toji, whose sister was injured during the Sachiel fight, gives Shinji a beating in school, blaming the Eva pilot for his sister's condition.

Three weeks after the first attack, the 4th Angel, Shamshel, attacks Tokyo-3. Shinji sorties in Eva-01, but the battle goes poorly for Nerv when Shinji loses his will to fight and is tossed into a mountainside by Shamshel, almost killing Toji and Kensuke, who have sneaked out to watch the battle. To save their lives, Misato orders Shinji to let the pair into Eva-01's entry plug. Once aboard, Toji and Kensuke witness Shinji's struggles and suffering as he disobeys Misato's order to retreat, instead fighting and defeating Shamshel. After seeing this, Toji feels guilt and remorse over hitting Shinji earlier.

Following the battle, Shinji is upbraided by Misato for ignoring her orders. Though he agrees to continue piloting, he skips school. After five days, he runs away from home, leaving behind a letter for Misato along with his Nerv security card.

Shinji spends a whole day riding around the Tokyo-3 loop line train, listening to his SDAT. At night he sleeps in a theatre, and the next day takes a bus to the country and wanders the mountains overlooking the city, eventually stopping at the edge of a cliff – specifically, a famous suicide spot.

As night falls, Shinji continues his wanderings and bumps into Kensuke, who is out camping by himself. The two spend the night inside Kensuke's tent, but in the morning Nerv security agents arrive to take Shinji into custody. He is brought before Misato, but while he agrees to pilot Eva-01 (despite making his displeasure at the task very clear), Misato rejects this attitude and tells him to leave.

Shinji is taken to a train station to be shipped out of Tokyo-3. There he meets Toji and Kensuke, who have heard he is to leave. As an act of contrition, Toji begs Shinji to strike him, as payback for Shinji's earlier beating, and the trio briefly bond.

The train arrives at the station, but upon recalling Misato's words of support, Shinji does not board. As the train pulls away, Shinji sees Misato, who has rushed to the station, and the two reconcile.

Operation Yashima and Jet Alone

Shinji and Rei
Main Articles: Episode 05, Episode 06, Episode 07

Shinji is taken by Misato and Ritsuko to observe the disposal of Shamshel's remains. There he observes the burns on Gendo's hands, and learns of Gendo's rescue of Rei during the Eva-00 activation experiment. Later, Shinji is stunned when he observes Gendo and Rei talking cordially together.

While having dinner with Misato and Ritsuko in Misato's apartment, Shinji is asked by Ritsuko to deliver a security card to Rei. Shinji goes to Rei's dilapidated apartment complex, and enters her even more disheveled room. There, he discovers his father's glasses, and, as he tries them on, a naked Rei silently emerges from her bathroom. This leads to a very awkward situation, as Rei attempts to take back the glasses, causing Shinji to trip and fall on top of her.

An embarrassed Shinji follows an unfazed Rei to work and is eventually able to deliver her security card. On the long escalator down, Shinji tries to talk to Rei about piloting Eva-00. But when the conversation turns to Gendo, Shinji's expressed disapproval of him causes Rei to silently round on Shinji and slap him in the face.

Following the successful reactivation attempt of Eva-00, the 5th Angel Ramiel appears and approaches Tokyo-3. Shinji sorties, but Eva-01 is immediately blasted by Ramiel's powerful energy beam, barely escaping destruction. Shinji is hospitalized for several hours, until he is woken by Rei, who informs him that they are both to participate in Operation Yashima. Shinji is reluctant, but when Rei declares that she can take his place, he changes his mind. Just before the operation begins, the pair talk again about Rei's reasons for piloting.

During Operation Yashima, Shinji uses the JSSDF's re-purposed Automated Positron Rifle and all the electrical power in Japan to defeat the Angel. After Eva-01's first shot misses, Shinji is defended from Ramiel's counterattack by Rei in Eva-00. Shinji's second shot destroys the Angel, but Eva-00 is badly melted. Shinji rushes to rescue Rei, paralleling Gendo's earlier actions. On finding her safe, Shinji is tearfully overwhelmed; Rei is confused, but on Shinji's suggestion she – reminded of Gendo – breaks into a deep smile.

Shinji continues to live with Misato and pilot Eva-01, becoming more comfortable with his life in Tokyo-3, though is still ignorant of many of its mysteries. He is eventually informed by Ritsuko of the true details of Second Impact, and that the official story is a cover-up. When Jet Alone is sabotaged and endangers a nearby populated area, Shinji pilots Eva-01 to assist Misato in her attempts to board and disable J.A. before it explodes.

Asuka's arrival

Shinji and Asuka
Main Articles: Episode 08, Episode 09, Asuka and Shinji (Relationship)

Shinji is taken by Misato on the United Nations Pacific Fleet as it escorts Eva-02 (and Adam) to Tokyo-3. There he encounters Eva-02's pilot, Asuka, who is less than impressed by him. He also meets Kaji for the first time. When the 6th Angel, Gaghiel, attacks the fleet, Shinji and Asuka both board Eva-02 to battle it, but end up falling into sea, where the Eva's B-Type equipment makes combat impossible. Following Misato's plan to sink two battleships right down the Angel's maw, Shinji and Asuka are able to focus their thoughts enough to get Eva-02 to force open Gaghiel's mouth leading to its destruction. The pair break their own synchronization records in the process.

On arrival in Tokyo-3, Asuka is assigned to school in Class 2A with Shinji and the rest. When the 7th Angel, Israfel, attacks, Eva-01 and Eva-02 are jointly dispatched to defeat it before it makes landfall. However, when Israfel splits into two parts, Shinji and Asuka are humiliatingly defeated, and the Angel is temporarily halted by the [[UN] with an N² bomb.

Based on a plan of Kaji's, Misato decides to have Asuka live with herself and Shinji so that the two can learn to work with the perfect unison required in order to defeat the Angel. The arrangement starts off poorly, with Shinji and Asuka resenting their living arrangements and matching dance outfits. However, when Misato threatens to replace Asuka with Rei, Asuka resolves to work harder at her unison with Shinji, and their performance improves. On the night before the battle, Asuka sleepwalks onto Shinji's futon; he attempts to kiss her, but stops after she calls in her sleep for her mother, after which Shinji realizes that Asuka is merely a child. The next day, their unison perfected, Shinji and Asuka sortie in Eva-01 and Eva-02, and successfully defeat Israfel with a simultaneous attack on both of its cores. The plan is a complete success, apart from the Evas ending up in a heap and the pilots bickering over whose fault it was.

Shinji in Tokyo-3

Shinji in Tokyo-3
Main Articles: Episode 10, Episode 11, Episode 12, Episode 13, Episode 14

During the summer, Shinji, Asuka, and Rei are required to miss the school trip on account of their piloting duties. During Nerv's operation to attempt to capture the 8th Angel, Sandalphon, Shinji serves as backup while Asuka descends into a magma pit. The operation fails, though the Angel is later destroyed. Asuka and Eva-02 are almost lost, but Shinji leaps into the magma in Eva-01 to save them both. Afterward, Misato rewards the pair by taking them to a nearby hot spring.

Just before the blackout at Nerv, Shinji calls Gendo to inform him of an upcoming Parent-Teacher meeting in school. Gendo dismisses this, telling Shinji that all such responsibilities have been delegated to Misato, and not to bother him with such matters again. During the blackout, Shinji, Asuka and Rei have to manually infiltrate Nerv HQ, discovering along the way that the 9th Angel, Matarael, is attacking the base. Once inside, Shinji learns that his father has been working to manually prepare the Evas for launch, in the belief that the pilots would arrive. All three Evangelions sortie under emergency power, and work together to defeat the Angel.

Shinji and Asuka continue to live with Misato. Shinji's synchronization with Eva-01 continues to improve, much to Asuka's annoyance. When Kensuke notices that Misato has been promoted to the rank of major, the children throw a party for her at the apartment, though Shinji is a little unused to being around so many people. He asks Misato why she joined Nerv; she claims to have forgotten, but later reveals that she joined Nerv to both avenge her father and to break free of his spell.

While Gendo is absent from Nerv, Tokyo-3 is attacked from orbit by the 10th Angel, Sahaquiel, which jams all communications and threatens to destroy Tokyo-3 by falling on it like a giant bomb. Misato orders an evacuation, and all three Evangelions again sortie in order to catch the Angel as it falls. With a burst of speed, Eva-01 catches the Angel first and holds it in place until Eva-00 and Eva-02 arrive to dispatch it. After the battle, Gendo personally praises Shinji by name for his actions. Later, while out eating Ramen, Shinji reveals to Misato that he pilots Eva to hear such words from his father.

Shinji, along with Asuka and Rei, takes part in the autopilot tests with the Simulation Bodies in the Pribnow Box. During the tests, the 11th Angel, Ireul, infiltrates the Pribnow Box and attacks. Shinji and the other pilots are evacuated, as Nerv deals with the Angel without using the Evangelions.

Shinji later takes part in an interchangeability test, and he tries to pilot Eva-00 for the first time. During the test Shinji feels the presence of something trying to dive into his mind, after which Unit-00 again goes berserk, trying to attack the control room. Shinji awakens later in hospital, apparently remembering nothing of the incident.

Shinji and Gendo

Main Articles: Episode 15, Episode 16, Episode 17, Episode 18

The anniversary of Yui's death is coming up, and Shinji is due to visit her gravesite with his father. While the students of Class 2A are cleaning their schoolroom, Shinji stares intently at Rei while she wrings a cloth. Later in an elevator, Shinji tries to ask Rei what Gendo is like, but she claims not to know. When Rei asks Shinji why he was staring earlier, he says that the way she was wringing the cloth reminded him of a mother. Later in Misato's apartment, Shinji reflects on Gendo, and Misato tries to encourage him for his gravesite visit the next day.

The next day, Shinji and Gendo visit Yui's grave to lay a wreath of flowers. Shinji has not been there in three years, having run away on the last occasion. Gendo and Shinji converse about Yui, how there is no body at the gravesite, and how Gendo has destroyed all pictures of her, claiming to keep everything in his heart. A Nerv VTOL arrives to collect Gendo, and Shinji catches a glimpse of Rei on board. As Gendo makes to depart, Shinji calls out to say he was glad the two of them were able to talk; Gendo responds briefly and the pair depart separately.

Later, at Misato's apartment, Asuka arrives home after dumping her date and, finding Shinji playing his cello quite well, applauds his performance. Shinji tells her that it is the only piece he knows how to play and that he isn't very good[2], and that he first started after his teacher instructed him to do so, continuing only because no one ever told him to stop.

Shinji and Gendo

During the evening, while Misato is out late with Kaji, Asuka asks Shinji if he wants to kiss her, claiming that she is bored, and eventually manages to persuade Shinji to agree. The pair kiss, but Asuka holds Shinji's nose until he turns blue and has to break off. Asuka runs off to the bathroom, and, washing out her mouth, declares that kissing is not a great way to pass time. Kaji arrives home with a drunken Misato, Asuka becomes downcast after smelling Misato's perfume on Kaji, but tells Shinji she is so because she kissed him.

Shinji synchronization results continue to improve until eventually, he passes Asuka to gain the highest synchronization ratio. He is congratulated by Misato, but Asuka is secretly enraged. Shinji confidence improves so much, that later when the 12th Angel, Leliel, attacks, Shinji decides not to wait for back up from Eva-00 and Eva-02, and attacks Leliel without support in Eva-01. When the Angel's spherical form turns out to be an illusion, Eva-01 is sucked into the Angel's "shadow" as Shinji screams for help.

Shinji is trapped "inside" the Angel, within a pocket dimension known as a Dirac Sea, cut off from outside communication as the Eva's power supply and life support systems slowly begin to give out. As more time passes. the LCL purification system fails, and Shinji, overwhelmed by the smell of blood, panics, banging on the Entry Plug and calling out for help from Misato, Asuka, Rei, Ritsuko, and even Gendo.

Still trapped in Leliel, Shinji finds himself in a dreamscape, faced by a younger version of himself in a dusk-lit train carriage. Leliel makes contact with Shinji, speaking as another version of himself, and forces Shinji to confront his relationships with others and in particular with his father. Shinji is forced to recall his abandonment by Gendo, and memories of the scandal surrounding Yui's death. Shinji wakes in the Entry Plug, finding life support systems have now completely failed, believing this is the end. But just as he has resigned to his fate, Shinji sees a vision of a long haired woman in the entry plug, and he realizes that it is his mother Yui, and also sees a vision or memory of his mother from the past.

As Nerv prepares to destroy Leliel through the use of Eva-00, Eva-02, and the remaining 992 N^2 mines, to everyone's shock, Leliel's shadow suddenly splits open, and despite being completely without power, a berserk Eva-01 tears it ways out of the Angel's upper sphere, bellowing amidst sprays of blood. Shinji's entry plug is opened by a tearful Misato, relieved to find him still alive. Shinji later awakens in the hospital, with Rei at his bedside, and is surprised when she uses the exact words Yui used in the Entry Plug.

Misato later refuses to allow Shinji to be interrogated by The Committee about his time inside the Angel. The Committee asks if Leliel attempted to communicate, but Misato claims that nothing in Shinji's report suggests this.

When Eva-04 and Nerv's Second branch in Nevada are destroyed, Shinji remains uninformed, both about the incident, the impending arrival of Eva-03 in Tokyo-3, and the selection of the Fourth Children. Shinji's life continues as normal in Class 2A, with the rest of his classmates. When Toji is asked to deliver a printout to an absent Rei, he asks Shinji to accompany him. The two travel to Rei's apartment, finding no-one home upon entering. When Shinji decides to clean her room, Toji remarks on what a different impression he has of Shinji now than when they first met. When Rei returns, surprised that Shinji cleaned her room, she awkwardly thanks him, later reflecting that she had never done so with Gendo.

When Shinji comes upon Misato and Kaji in Nerv HQ, he is invited by Kaji to drink tea. While sitting on a bench in the Geofront, Shinji expresses some disappointment in Kaji's lack of seriousness. Kaji decides to show Shinji something special, and takes him to a secret garden patch in the Geofront where Kaji has been growing melons. While Kaji waters the plants, the two discuss what can be learned from such experiences, and about Shinji's knowledge of suffering.

While at school, Toji is asked by Ritsuko to become the Fourth Children and pilot of Eva-03, though the others remain unaware of this. Shinji learns from Kensuke that Eva-03 is coming to Japan, and will be tested in Matsushiro, and that Eva-04 and Nerv second branch have been destroyed, none of which Misato has told Shinji anything of. When Misato is about to depart for the test, Shinji puts these questions to her, and tries to ask her about the selected pilot, but is interrupted by Kensuke, who has arrived at the apartment to (unsuccessfully) beg to be selected as the pilot.

Later at home, Shinji and Asuka are babysat by Kaji while Misato is away. Shinji tries to learn the pilot's identity from Asuka, but when she realizes he doesn't know yet, she pretends she doesn't know either. That night, Shinji tries to ask Kaji what his father Gendo is like, as Kaji is frequently with Gendo. Kaji tells Shinji that the Vice Commander is most often with Gendo. The two also discuss Misato.


Main Articles: Episode 18, Episode 19

The next day, during its activation test at Matsushiro, Eva-03 is taken over by the 13th Angel, Bardiel, and Misato and Ritsuko are caught up in the explosion. Gendo assumes tactical control of Nerv, and orders Shinji, Asuka, and Rei to sortie in their Evangelions and to intercept Bardiel, which is advancing on Tokyo-3. When Asuka and Rei are both defeated by Bardiel, Shinji is left alone to face the Angel in Eva-01.

However, Shinji is unable to fight when faced with the prospect of having to kill the pilot who is still trapped inside. Bardiel, facing no resistance, proceeds to throttle Eva-01. Despite Gendo's attempts to get him to fight, Shinji refuses, preferring to die himself before killing another person.

Gendo then orders that Eva-01's control be switched over to the Dummy System. Control is switched, and Shinji is left powerless to stop Eva-01's actions as the dummy system proceeds to destroy Eva-03 and Bardiel in a particularly brutal fashion. Over Shinji's pleas for Gendo to stop, Eva-01 tears out and crushes Eva-03's Entry Plug in its right hand. Later, Shinji discovers that the pilot was indeed Toji, when he sees him being removed – alive, but severely injured – from the smashed Entry Plug.

Upon returning Eva-01 to Nerv HQ, a furious Shinji seals himself inside Eva-01, threatening to destroy Headquarters and accuses Gendo of trying to kill Toji using his hands, demanding that he explain himself. Gendo merely orders the LCL pressure in the plug to be maximized, and Shinji is knocked unconscious. While recovering in hospital alongside Shinji, Toji apparently witnesses Shinji and Rei in the dreamscape train, arguing over Shinji's actions and his relationship with Gendo.

Shinji is imprisoned, and is subsequently brought before Gendo in handcuffs to explain his insubordination. Shinji, however, is in absolutely no mood to allow his father hold power over him anymore, and coldly declares that he no longer wants to pilot an Eva anymore, and that he wishes to leave Tokyo-3 and return to live with his teacher. Gendo allows this, telling Shinji he is disappointed to find him running away, and that they are unlikely to meet again. Shinji states that this is his intent.

Misato takes Shinji to a train station to depart, and tells him that if he keeps cutting people out of his life like this, living is going to be hard for him. Shinji just replies that it might her philosophy, but he can personally not live like that. She then apologizes for what happened with Toji, and for not telling him sooner, before revealing to him that all of his classmates in Class 2A are Evangelion pilot candidates. While Misato offers to maintain his Nerv security pass and card, Shinji asks her not to, saying he will never pilot Eva-01 again. Misato is surprised by how frankly he speaks.

But before Shinji can leave, Tokyo-3 is attacked by the 14th Angel, Zeruel, and Shinji is lead to a civilian shelter. Meanwhile, Eva-01 refuses to accept commands from either Rei or the Dummy Plug, and Nerv is left to face the Angel with only Eva-02 and a damaged Eva-00. Asuka sorties in Eva-02, but is swiftly defeated by Zeruel despite her best efforts. Eva-02's severed head crashes into Shinji's evacuation shelter, forcing the civilians out into the Geofront. Once outside Shinji meets Kaji at his garden patch, and learns that if the Angel makes contact with Adam in Terminal Dogma, all humanity will be destroyed in Third Impact. Shinji witnesses Rei make a desperate sortie in a damaged Eva-00, detonating an N2 mine, but to no effect, with Eva-00 being subsequently struck down. Kaji reminds Shinji that only he can pilot Evangelion, and tells him to make his own decisions about what to do next.

As the attack continues, Shinji runs down to Eva-01's cage with the intention to pilot again. At the cage, he encounters Gendo, standing over the Eva-01 as in their first encounter. When Gendo asks why Shinji has come, Shinji replies that he is the pilot of Eva-01.

Zeruel penetrates Nerv HQ and Central Dogma and almost destroys the Command Center before being stopped just in time by Shinji in Eva-01. The Angel severs Eva-01's arm, but Shinji manages to get Misato to use the Evangelion launch pad to move the fight out into the Geofront. But, before he can deal the finishing blow, Eva-01 runs out of power. As Zeruel proceeds to methodically smash at Eva-01's now defenseless core, Shinji desperately pleads with the Eva to move, so that no one else will die. At his final scream, Eva-01 suddenly awakens, stopping Zeruel's attacks and wrenching off part of the Angel to restore its severed arm. Eva-01's synchronization rate jumps to over 400%, and later examination reveals that Shinji had dissolved in the Entry Plug, having been absorbed by Eva-01. Only an image of his plugsuit – generated by his loose soul – remains.

Inside the Eva

Inside the Eva
Main Article: Episode 20

Shinji spends 30 days trapped inside Eva-01 while Nerv prepares a salvage operation to rescue him. Nerv surmised that Shinji is alive, but has dissolved in the LCL inside the Entry Plug. Meanwhile, Shinji experiences another dreamscape in which he examines his reasoning for piloting Eva-01 and his relationships with Gendo and Yui.

After 30 days, Nerv attempts to salvage Shinji, but the attempt fails due to Shinji's own reluctance to return. The Entry Plug opens, spilling out the LCL containing Shinji's former matter and plugsuit. However, Shinji is still alive, now fully absorbed into Eva-01. He experiences a flashback to his early infancy, remembering his mother. As Misato weeps, cradling the empty plugsuit, Shinji is reconstituted, intact and alive, out through Eva-01's exposed core.


Main Articles: Episode 21, Episode 22, Episode 23

Shinji returns to duty, but the use of Eva-01 is frozen by Gendo, to satisfy Seele. Additionally, his home life becomes difficult. Having learned of Kaji's death, Misato breaks down crying after hearing Kaji' last message on her answering machine. Though Shinji hears her crying, he is unable to do or say anything, and retreats to his room, realizing he is still a child.

Shinji's relationship with Asuka also begins deteriorating. When the 15th Angel, Arael, attacks from orbit, Eva-02 and Asuka are mentally attacked and incapacitated. Shinji asks to sortie in Eva-01 to rescue her, but Gendo refuses, maintaining the freeze on Eva-01, and instead has Rei use the Spear of Longinus to destroy the Angel. Asuka is infuriated that she had to be rescued by Rei.

When the 16th Angel, Armisael, attacks, Eva-00 is infected by the Angel, and Asuka is unable to synch with Eva-02 to mount a rescue. As Eva-00 and Rei continue to be taken over, Gendo lifts the lockdown on Eva-01, and Shinji is allowed to sorties to rescue Rei. The rescue fails when Armisael attempts to take over Eva-01 as well, and to prevent this, Rei initiates Eva-00's self-destruct, which destroys the Angel, Eva-00, and apparently herself. Shinji is stunned. Later he tells Misato that though he is sad, he finds himself unable to cry, and when Misato tries to comfort him, he refuses her contact. Upon learning that Rei is alive, Shinji rushes to the hospital, noticing that his father is not there. He tells Rei that he is relieved she is alive, and thanks her for saving him from the Angel, though Rei does not remember doing so.

Shinji later receives a call from Ritsuko, informing him that his movements are no longer restricted. Shinji is lead to Terminal Dogma, and there witnesses Misato surprise Ritsuko at gunpoint. Ritsuko then leads the three on =a tour of Nerv's secrets in Terminal Dogma. Ritsuko shows Rei's birthplace to Shinji and Misato, and also shows them the Evangelion Graveyard, where she reveals to Shinji that he witnessed his mother's disappearance during her Contact Experiment with Eva-01. When the three reach the Dummy Plug Plant, Ritsuko reveals a tank filled with Rei clones, and gives a monologue on Nerv, the Evangelions, and the nature of Rei. After this, Ritsuko destroys the Reis in the tank, and asks Misato to kill her. Misato refuses, and Ritsuko proceeds to break into sobbing. Shinji witnesses the entire event.

Shinji and Kaworu

Shinji and Kaworu
Main Article: Episode 24

Afterward, Shinji reflects on the connection he has felt between Rei and his mother Yui. Further developments leave Shinji friendless and alone, as Toji and Kensuk] leave Tokyo-3, Asuka runs away from home, and he can no longer face either Misato or Rei. While contemplating this, Shinji encounters Kaworu Nagisa, who is humming Ode to Joy by the lakeshore. Kaworu is quick to befriend Shinji, and reveals immediately that he is the Fifth Children.

Following synchronization tests, Kaworu meets Shinji, who is loitering outside Central Dogma due to his reluctance to return to Misato's apartment. Kaworu invites Shinji to bathe with him in the Nerv public bathhouse. In the baths, Kaworu tells Shinji that while his avoidance of contact with others means he will not be betrayed or hurt, it also means he will always be lonely. Kaworu touches Shinji's hand and declares that he admires Shinji's sensitive nature, and that he likes Shinji. Because Shinji is afraid of reaching out to anyone else, Shinji later stays in Kaworu's room for the night, sleeping on the floor. At Kaworu's prompting, Shinji begins discusses his life before coming to Tokyo-3, and his relationship with Gendo. Shinji wonders why he is doing so; Kaworu states he may have been born to meet Shinji.

Later, Kaworu seizes Eva-02, taking it down toward Terminal Dogma. Shinji is ordered to pursue in Eva-01. Shinji initially cannot believe that Kaworu is an Angel, and regards Kaworu as having betrayed his trust like Gendo. During the pursuit, Shinji tries to persuade Kaworu to stop but is forced to grapple with Eva-02, and witnesses Kaworu's A.T. Field in action. He also notices the effects of Rei's AT Field.

Kaworu reaches Terminal Dogma, finding Lilith. Shinji defeats Eva-02 and seizes Kaworu in Eva-01's hand. Kaworu, having decided not to proceed with his original plans, tells Shinji choosing that choosing to die the only absolute freedom he has, and asks Shinji to kill him, so that humanity will not be destroyed. Shinji hesitates for a long time, but eventually crushes Kaworu in Eva-01's hand.

Afterward, at the lakeshore, Shinji mourns for Kaworu and tells Misato that Kaworu was the one who should have survived instead of himself.

The End of TV

The End of TV
Main Articles: Episode 25, Episode 26

Shinji spends the last two episodes of the TV series in a dreamscape, the majority of which apparently takes place after Complementation begins.

Shinji is shown to be tormented by Kaworu's death, and his own role in it. Amidst the introspection and imagery to which he is subjected, Shinji finds himself in surrounded in a mysterious fog. A vision of Eva-01 appears before Shinji, Shinji directly referring to the Evangelion as his mother. Shinji is also confronted by Asuka about his motivations for piloting. As Complementation proper begins, Shinji is shown experiencing a curiously familiar feeling of disassociation or disembodiment.

During Complementation, Shinji appears before Misato, telling her that he must connect with other people to find out who he is, and asks Misato what it is that she wants. The Case of Misato Katsuragi begins, and, amidst other images, Shinji is shown apparently observing a memory of Misato's week alone with Kaji, which seems to disgust Shinji. When Misato's case ends, Shinji appears before Asuka and asks her what she wants as The Case of Asuka Langley Soryu begins.

Following these cases, Shinji appears in an empty auditorium, confronted by visions of people he knew in Tokyo-3 – including a vision of himself – who explains that the empty place he now finds himself is part of the Human Instrumentality Project, and the "reality" he finds himself in is the result of what Shinji himself wanted. The Case of Shinji Ikari begins.

Shinji is confronted about his own insecurities, and told that humans must complement each other in instrumentality. Shinji and Asuka are both questioned by Rei about their reasons for living, for piloting their Evas, and for running away. Shinji is told that he can run away, but he states that he no longer wants to. Shinji is confronted at length with this self-hatred, anxieties, and his dependence on piloting Eva-01 for others' acceptance. As instrumentality continues, both Shinji and Asuka are questioned further on their insecurities and desires.

Eventually, Shinji asks what he himself is, and the dreamscape shifts to a further abstract form, where Shinji examines the nature of his own existence. Shinji is shown floating in an abstract emptiness, which can alter at will, and where he can even change his own form to whatever he imagines. Shinji's form morphs in fantastic ways, but Shinji realizes that he will eventually lose all image of himself, because he is alone in this world, and always will be. Upon this realization, Shinji awakens within a vision of an alternate reality.

In this alternate reality, Shinji appears to have a normal, well-adjusted life, in a more idyllic version of Tokyo-3. His lives with his parents Gendo and Yui, who is alive, and is friends with Asuka. The two attend school in Class 2A as before with Kensuke, Toji, and Hikari, but now Misato is teaching the class. A livelier, more animated Rei is also present as a transfer student into the class, and immediately enters an appropriately animated argument with Asuka over the topic of Shinji. As the vision of this alternate reality fades, Shinji realizes that such a life is a possibility for him.

Shinji returns to the empty auditorium. He is again confronted by visions of the people he knows, who urge him to change his negative perceptions of reality, of others' opinions of him, and of himself. Shinji lists his faults, and replies still hates himself; but Shinji also states that he may be able to learn to love himself. At this, the auditorium begins to crack. And as Shinji states that he is himself, and stands up to proclaim that it is all right for him to be here, the misty auditorium is blown away to be replaced by a bright blue landscape. Shinji is surrounded by applauding friends and family, who one by one proceed to congratulate him. Shinji smiles happily, and thanks them.

The End of Evangelion

Main Articles: The End of Evangelion. Episode 25', Episode 26', Third Impact, Instrumentality


Main Article: Episode 25'

At dawn, possibly the morning after Kaworu's death, Shinji stands by a lake for hours, unsure of what to do.. Later, Shinji goes to hospital Room 303, where Asuka is currently sedated. He tells the unconscious Asuka that Rei and Misato now frighten him, and begs her to save him, shaking her to try and wake her up. Asuka remains unconscious, and Shinji's desperate pulling only ends up inadvertently tearing open her blouse. On seeing her exposed body, Shinji proceeds to masturbate next to the still sleeping Asuka, ejaculating onto his hand. Upon concluding, Shinji depreciates himself.

On the night before the JSSDF attack, Shinji lies awake with his SDAT, but it is shown to have run out of batteries. The next day, after Seele's failed attempt to hack into Nerv's Magi system, the JSSDF attacks Tokyo-3 and Nerv HQ. As the attack commences, Misato orders Shinji into Eva-01, but he is soon found to have simply curled up under a staircase somewhere in Nerv HQ. As the attack progresses, Shinji is subsequently discovered by a group of JSSDF soldiers. A gun is placed to Shinji's head, with the soldier pausing for a moment to tell Shinji that this is nothing personal. Before he can pull the trigger, Misato arrives in the nick of time, dispatching the soldiers -- along with a venomous remark to the same soldier that it was nothing personal -- and rescuing Shinji.

In an underground parking lot, as Misato listens in on a captured JSSDF radio, Shinji simply sits listlessly as before, not responding to Misato's calls for him to move on towards Eva-01. Shinji only silent calls for Asuka to save him. Misato berates him, and tries to drag his limp and apathetic form off the ground, with Shinji saying that he wants to simply die. Misato refuses to accept this, telling him that he can die later.

Misato drives Shinji to Eva-01 in her car, taking a passage through the Evangelion graveyard. On the way, Misato reveals several secrets of Nerv to Shinji, including that humans are the 18th Angel, born from the Seed of Life, Lilith. Shinji hears over the radio that Eva-02 has reactivated and that Asuka is alive. Farther on in Nerv HQ, Misato's car crashes with a blown-out tire and bullet holes. Over radio, Misato orders Asuka to destroy the Mass Production Evangelions which have just arrived, telling her that Shinji will be her backup. Misato again has to almost drag a limp Shinji onward.

Misato and Shinji reach an emergency elevator route leading to Eva-01, but are ambushed by a JSSDF unit who open fire. The pair escape behind a sealed door, but Misato is shot and mortally wounded. At the elevators, Shinji sees that Misato has been shot, though she passes it off as nothing.

Opening the elevator to Eva-01, Misato again tries to persuade Shinji to move on, but he is still inert and self depreciating, and refuses to Pilot Eva-01, listing all his faults and failings, and preferring to do nothing. As Shinji continues to refuse to pilot, Misato gives an impassioned, desperate, speech in an effort to convince Shinji not to give up or give in to regret. At the end, she bequeaths Shinji her cross necklace, kisses him deeply, and, after a seductive promise to "do the rest" after he returns, finally pushes him backwards into the elevator, sealing the doors behind. As Shinji ascends in the elevator, he notices Misato's blood on his hand, and begins sobbing.

As Asuka battles with the MP Evas in the Geofront, Shinji reaches Eva-01's cage, but finds Eva-01 encased in Bakelite. Over a radio, he hears Asuka's battles with the MP Evas, and later hears her calling that her mother is fighting alongside her. When Eva-02 is impaled by the MP Evas' replica spears, Shinji hears Maya's screams over the radio, but is unable to get inside Eva-01. At that moment, Eva-01 moves of its own accord, shattering the Bakelite and reaching its hand out to grasp the platform where Shinji sits, startling Shinji.

Yours Sincerely

Final Sortie
Main Article: Episode 26'

Shinji, now inside Eva-01's Entry Plug, triggers a giant, cross-shaped explosion which destroys the Nerv pyramid. Sporting a set of wings, Eva-01 levitates out into the Geofront. Inside the entry plug, Shinji looks up to see the MP Evas eating Eva-02's eviscerated remains, and begins screaming. As Shinji screams, Eva-01 breaks off its bindings, and, at this, the Spear of Longinus rushes down from the Moon, stopping directly in front of Eva-01.

The MP Evas use their replica spears to impale Eva-01, and carry it outside the Geofront and high into the sky. Shinji's own hands are somehow marked with stigmata from the spears. The MP Evas use their S² Engines to create an Anti A.T. Field, unleashing a massive explosion that completely destroys Tokyo-3 and the surrounding region, exposing the Geofront's true form -- the Black Moon. Below, in Terminal Dogma, Rei betrays Gendo and merges with Lilith to become an enormous version of herself. She grows out through the Geofront until it rises up to where Eva-01 is still suspended. Shinji begins screaming in terror.

The MP Evas' A.T. Fields begin to resonate, and they begin merging with Rei, their faces partially morphing into her appearance. The sight of this shocks and terrifies Shinji to such an extent that when he screams again, Eva-01 screams in unison, and its chest splits open to expose its core. As Shinji begs in the Entry Plug, unable to cope, Rei suddenly transforms into Kaworu, who asks Shinji if he wants it to stop. Shinji is put at ease by Kaworu's presence, closing his eyes and relaxing as the Spear of Longinus merges with Eva-01, forming the Tree of Life. After Eva-01 is enveloped, Lilith morphs back into Rei, and Shinji hears Yui telling him that Rei embodies his hopes and dreams, and asking him what he wishes for. As he enters Instrumentality, Shinji has a vision of a woman's breasts being clutched.

Pre-3I Instrumentality

Pre 3I Instrumentality

Shinji finds himself in a dreamscape as a young child in a playground. He is asked by doll-like children to help build a pyramid in a sandpit, but when these children depart with their mother, the young Shinji is left alone. He finishes the pyramid, but then destroys it in frustration. After a moment, he begins rebuilding it.

Shinji continues through the dreamscape, seeing flashes of Asuka, Misato, and Rei. He witnesses a memory of Misato's past, seeing a vision of her making love to Kaji. Shinji relives a memory of his first kiss with Asuka, but here Asuka berates him for not understanding her. Shinji protests, but Asuka reveals that she knows Shinji fantasies about her, including what he did over her comatose body in the hospital. Shinji is brought to the dreamscape train, where he reveals his fears and frustrations about the ambiguity of his relationships with Misato, Rei, and Asuka.

Following this, Shinji arrives in a vision of the kitchen in Misato's apartment, where Asuka is sitting. There he again begs her to help him, but Asuka instead rounds on him, accusing him of simply being afraid of Gendo, Yui, Misato, and Rei, and of never having learned to love himself, finally pushing Shinji to the ground, into a pool of spilled coffee. Shinji gets up, overturning the table and chairs, while still calling for Asuka help him. When Asuka again refuses, Shinji proceeds to strangle her.

Third Impact

Third Impact
Main Article: Third Impact

As images pass in the dreamscape, as Rei questions him, Shinji tells her that it is better if he, and everyone else, simply die. Third Impact begins; A colossal Rei, hundreds of kilometers tall, appears over the Black Moon, and smaller, ethereal Reis appear inside the Geofront, liquifying the living and dead into LCL, with this process sweeping over the whole world. The Tree of Life, with Eva-01 still inside, is swallowed into an eye which opens in the Colossal Rei's forehead. Shinji momentarily wakes, and sees a multitude of swimming Rei's floating around a giant core, and sees a vision of the Tank of Reis, whose faces then change into his own.

Shinji sees a blur of visions and voices, including smiling visions of Misato and Rei, telling him that he can stop or run away if he wants, though Asuka's voice again rejects him. Shinji eventually sees visions of another reality, and there asks Rei about dreams. Rei tells him that he is seeing a dream, and that reality lies at the end of his dream.

Shinji awakens within a red sea, seemingly floating between the earth and the moon, naked with a likewise naked Rei sitting over him, their bodies physically merging together. Rei tells Shinji that they are in the Sea of LCL, a place without A.T. Fields, where everyone has been joined into one. When Shinji tells Rei this isn't right, Rei tells him that if he wishes, everyone will be separated once again. Shinji says that this is fine, and thanks her.

The seascape shifts to blue, with Shinji lying in Rei's lap. He tells her that while he wanted to run away, there was nothing good in the places to which he ran. Kaworu also appears in the seascape, which begins to shift between different landscapes. Shinji speaks with Rei and Kaworu, saying that though the return of A.T. Fields means he will be hurt, he wishes to see others again as his feelings were real.

As Instrumentality ends, Shinji sees a vision of his mother -- floating away from him into the depths of the Sea of LCL -- as he rises upwards. Yui asks Shinji if he will be alright, he responds saying that he does not know where to find happiness, but that he is himself. Shinji surfaces in the ocean, now colored red. He sees the disintegrating head of the colossal Rei in the distance, and wonders what his mother -- still inside a now petrified Eva-01 -- will do now.[3]

One More Final: I need you.

One More Final

See: Theory and Analysis:Final Scene in End of Evangelion

An undetermined length of time later, Shinji is shown lying next to Asuka on a beach beside the red ocean, the landscape around it in ruins. After hearing a sound to his side, Shinji turns his head to see a ghostly image of Rei floating over the water, who then disappears. Shinji sits up looking to where Rei was, then looks down at Asuka. Shinji then climbs over Asuka and begins to strangle her. Asuka does nothing other than raise her bandaged hand to Shinji's cheek. At this, Shinji stops, and begins weeping, letting go of Asuka. Asuka looks at Shinji, and says "Kimochi warui".

Profile and Relationships with Other Characters

Image Name Profile/Relationship Main Page
Shinji Ikari

Shinji Ikari

Shinji is a damaged but compassionate individual. The death of his mother, and especially his abandonment by his father have left Shinji with difficulties in his relationship with others, and with himself. See Shinji (Profile)
Gendo Ikari

Gendo Ikari

Gendo and Shinji have one of the most complicated but central relationships in all of Evangelion. The relationship is ostensibly one of mutual distance, but underlying feelings remain, as Gendo has a lot more in common with Shinji than either part would like to admit. See Gendo and Shinji (Relationship)
Misato Katsuragi

Misato Katsuragi

Misato is Shinji's guardian during his time in Tokyo-3, and also his commanding officer. Her status as adoptive parent is always in conflict with other aspects of their relationship. See Misato and Shinji (Relationship) and Theory and Analysis:Sexuality In Misato and Shinji's Relationship
Asuka Langley Soryu

Asuka Langley Soryu

The confident, forthright and ambitious Asuka is Shinji's polar opposite in many ways, but the two Eva pilots share more similarities than at first appears. Shinji comes to rely on Asuka for more than just her piloting skills, as their ambiguous mutual feelings for each other greatly affect both. See Shinji and Asuka's Relationship
Rei Ayanami

Rei Ayanami

Shinji and Rei are linked by mutual bonds to Gendo, Yui, and the Evangelions, which he is only dimly aware of. In time, Shinji slowly displaces Gendo in Rei's affections. See Shinji and Rei's Relationship
Ritsuko Akagi

Ritsuko Akagi

As head of Project-E, Ritsuko's relationship to Shinji is more professional than personal, and largely through Misato in both instances. But Ritsuko can be perceptive when it comes to Shinji. See Ritsuko and Shinji (Relationship)
Kaworu Nagisa

Kaworu Nagisa

Kaworu enters Shinji's life for the briefest of periods. But in that time his life, and death, have a profound impact. See Kaworu and Shinji (Relationship)
Ryoji Kaji

Ryoji Kaji

Practically the only adult male figure in Shinji's life. Shinji looks up to Kaji from the time they first meet, and he acts as a sort of mentor to him. See Kaji and Shinji (Relationship)
Toji Suzuhara

Toji Suzuhara

One of Shinji's friends from Class 2A. After a rocky beginning, Shinji and Toji become firm friends. See Shinji and Toji (Relationship)
Kensuke Aida

Kensuke Aida

One of Shinji's friends from Class 2A. Kensuke often knows more about what's going on at Nerv than Shinji does. See Kensuke and Shinji (Relationship)
Hikari Horaki

Hikari Horaki

One of Shinji's friends from Class 2A. Hikari is the class representative See Hikari and Shinji (Relationship)
Yui Ikari

Yui Ikari

Yui disappeared into Eva-01 when Shinji was still very young. Though he can no longer remember her face, Shinji slowly begins to suspect who is really inside Eva-01. See Yui and Shinji (Relationship) and Theory and Analysis:Yui's Agenda
Pen Pen

Pen Pen

Misato's pet Penguin. He lives in the apartment with Shinji and the rest. See Pen Pen and Shinji (Relationship)

In Rebuild of Evangelion

Shinji smiling at Rei after Operation Yashima.

Shinji in Rebuild begins mostly the same as his anime counterpart. However, there are moments when he is more angry about his situation (although he isn't outwardly angry like his manga counterpart with Sadamoto's take on the series). For instance, he calls Misato and other members of Nerv as being selfish that he's "left feeling scared" when he and Rei have to pilot during the Operation Yashima battle. Somewhat similar to his feelings in The End of Evangelion, Shinji realizes that he "has no freedom" and "has no choice but to pilot Eva" when he attempts to run away from Nerv after the Shamshel battle. Although he decides to stay in Tokyo-3 instead of leaving like in Episode 04 of the series, Shinji can't help but feel that he's only needed for piloting Eva and that nobody truly cares for him.

These feelings are dissolved to an extent when Misato shows Shinji the crucified Lilith in Terminal Dogma, explaining to him why he and the rest of Nerv have to do what they can to prevent Third Impact from happening. He agrees to pilot Eva-01 once more, and, together with Rei in Eva-00, defeats Ramiel during the Operation Yashima battle.

Shinji's relationships with the other characters in Evangelion 1.0 are similar to those in the series. One difference with his relationships towards Misato and Rei, however, is that he is somewhat physically close to them as the film progresses. When Misato shows Shinji Lilith, Shinji lets Misato hold his hand. Also, when Shinji checks on Rei in her Entry Plug after Ramiel's defeat, the two hold hands as Rei smiles at him.

Shinji being affected by Eva-01's pseudo-evolution at the end of the second film.

In Evangelion 2.0, Shinji is somewhat more accustomed to living in Tokyo-3. His friendship with Toji and Kensuke is a solid one (due to them becoming friends in the first film) and he has occasional conversations (as well as smiling around) Rei. Shinji also becomes friends (and additionally roommates) with Asuka Langley Shikinami, but so far shows no romantic interest in either pilot. Shinji briefly meets Mari Illustrious Makinami twice during the film, but he knows nothing of her, save for a few verbal exchanges. During lunch with his friends at a marine preservation institute, Shinji mentions that he learned to cook meals because Misato didn't know how to. He makes lunches for Misato, Asuka, as well as Rei during the film. Shinji hopes to get along with his father and is happy when Gendo praises him after the Eighth Angel attack. Shinji is unaware that Rei tried to surprise him by inviting Gendo to a dinner party. The plans for the party were cut short, however, by the Ninth Angel's attack.

After Shinji's inability to fight the 9th Angel-possessed Eva-03 which carried Asuka, Gendo activates the Dummy System and prompts Shinji to leave Nerv. He only returns after encountering Mari and seeing the 10th Angel devour Eva-00. Shinji pilots Eva-01 to save Rei from the Angel's core. He embraces Rei and thanks her for her efforts of trying to get Gendo and Shinji on good terms. Shinji's decision to save Rei awakens God Mode Eva-01 and causes Near Third Impact, only to be halted by Kaworu's intervention, spearing Eva-01's core. Shinji and Rei are said to be trapped inside Eva-01 during the Evangelion 3.0 Next Time Preview.

Shinji aboard the AAA Wunder.

Evangelion 3.0 begins with an operation to bring Eva-01 back to earth after it has been sent to space in a huge tesseract, with Asuka in Eva-02 and Mari in Eva-08 taking part. After Asuka is attacked by an Angel that reflects sunlight as a weapon, she calls out Shinji's name - which has the effect of Eva-01 briefly awakening and destroying the attacking Angel with eye beams. Shinji is extracted from Eva-01 along with the SDAT player after it is brought aboard the AAA Wunder. He is dismayed to wake up being placed under armed guard - and he is put under the care of Sakura Suzuhara, Toji's little sister (Toji is later implied to be dead). He discovers that 14 years have passed and that all the crew of the Wunder, including Misato and Ritsuko, blame him for the catastrophe. He has a DSS Choker placed around his neck to prevent him from ever piloting an Eva again. A new Rei Ayanami("Rei Q") appears in the Mark.09 and rescues him, bringing him to his father, Gendo. He meets Kaworu Nagisa in the wrecked remains of the old Nerv headquarters and learns to play the piano with him. He also gets to see the devastation caused by Near-Third Impact, which Kaworu says he was the "catalyst" of. Shinji denies this, saying he only wanted to save Rei.

Gendo orders him to pilot the new Eva-13 together with Kaworu. Kaworu gives him an offer: he tells him they can alter the world again, by pulling the Spears of Longinus and Cassius. Kaworu takes the DSS Choker off Shinji and places it around his own neck. Together, Shinji and Kaworu breach the barrier placed around Lilith's chamber and attempt to remove the spears placed in Lilith to undo the damage he had wrought. Asuka and Mari appear in their Evas and fight with him. Asuka asks him if he is trying to start another impact, but an obstinate Shinji refuses to listen to Asuka and Kaworu's pleas not to remove the now-changed spears and unwittingly unleashes Fourth Impact. Kaworu Nagisa's DSS Choker activates and kills him, leaving a distraught Shinji stuck in his Eva with the impact proceeding around him. The impact ends when Mari pulls his entry plug loose of Eva-13, telling him to "know a little more about the world". Asuka finds Shinji unresponsive in his entry plug, berates him on acting like a "brat" and running away from his problems, and drags Shinji out of the entry plug. They are followed by Rei Q, as they head into the devastated landscape to "where the Lilim are".

After spending a large part of Evangelion: 3.0 + 1.0 Thrice Upon a Time in a catatonic-like state caused by Kaworu's fate, he comes back to his senses when Rei Ayanami (tentative name) shows him the affection her and his friends still have for him. After witnessing the last moments of Rei's clone and the arrival of Wunder to the village, he chooses to come back to the ship, where he's taken into custody, without a choker: Misato is sure he doesn't have any intention of breaking his reclusion. Before the clash in the Antartic, Asuka admits her feelings for him and he recognizes his inaction the last time they fought, gaining her recognition, however, Asuka clais she "grew up before you did". When the Wunder is damaged, he leaves his cell and confronts his father before his departure to the Anti-Universe, and asks Misato to allow him to pilot Unit-01 for the last time, which she accepts after taking a bullet for him and placing a choker in his neck. Once Mari takes him through the Doors of Guf and promises she'll bring him back, he reassumes control of the Unit-01 after meeting again with a long-haired Ayanami, reaches infinite syncro with the EVA and fights against Gendo and Unit-13 until discovering he can't win just by means of sheer strength. After Gendo explains him the ultimate goal of his plan, meeting Yui for the last time, and apologizes for leaving him behind during his lifetime, Shinji receives the Spear of Gaius and reunites again with Asuka, Kaworu and Rei, speaking for the last time with each one of them and ensuring they'll return to the world. Talking to Asuka, he returns her feelings. During his reunion with Rei, he makes clear the wish he'll fulfill with the Spear: a new beginning for the world, free of Evas, where everybody can live. Before he can use the Spear to destroy Unit-01, he is released by his mother, who alongside his father takes the Spear and destroys all the Evangelions, returning the souls of the dead back to the world. Mari finds him stranded on a beach and after leaving Unit-08 to its fate, takes him back to the rebuilt world, where they appear as adults in a train station, in a city similar to Ube, Yamaguchi. Mari walks up Shinji and approaches his neck facing his front and smells his neck: "The smell of an adult". Shinji initially looks annoyed but replies confidently, to Mari's surprise, and she removes his DSS Choker.< [4] She offers her hand and says, "Well then, lets go, Shinji-kun." and Shinji agrees, leaving the main gate and guiding him to the new world as they let go of each other's hands.[5][6][7]

Shinji in Other Media

"Making something... Nurturing something is really great. You can see and learn so many things from the process."
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Manga adaptation

Shinji standing up for himself. Added bonus, Gendo looks shocked and afraid of his son. (Please remember to read from right to left)

The manga version of Shinji Ikari is significantly different from his anime depiction. In the manga, Shinji has the same issues with his abandonment, but is a much more violent and troubled youth, sometimes even turning physically violent, going so far as attempting to strike Gendo. He is also something of a smart-alec and slightly more forward and cynical when it comes to dealing with others, mentally thinking of Asuka as a "bitch" and initially being annoyed at her, unlike in the anime.

Fan opinion of this characterization is mixed, with some preferring the manga Shinji because he has more of a "backbone", more like a typical hero. However, other fans feel that removing Shinji's neurotic anti-hero aspects makes him less human and harder to relate to. The backbone becomes very apparent in Volume 7 of the Manga, Stage 41, when Shinji tries to attack Gendo after the death of Toji.

Shinji lived with an aunt and uncle instead of with his sensei before going to Nerv. Stage 91 (Volume 13) mentions Shinji lived with Yui's older sister. Stage 91 reveals the family consisted of Shinji's uncle, aunt, and cousin. They would speak badly of Gendo, claiming he caused Yui to die.

Throughout the majority of the manga, Shinji appears to be attracted to Rei, and their relationship is far more developed than in the anime. He does, however, get closer to Asuka over time, and after the death of Kaworu, Shinji visits Asuka in the hospital, similar to in End of Evangelion. He confesses his love to her in a way, claiming, "The Asuka I want to protect isn't this empty shell!". Although she soon awakes and strangles him, this suggests that Shinji's manga adaptation has feelings for Asuka as well.

In other Eva-based Manga

The Shinji Ikari Raising Project manga portrays Shinji as acting more like his manga counterpart since he's more confident about himself. Shinji here also is something of a pervert, which goes along with Shinji's personality in the possible world sequence of Episode 26 as well as Girlfriend of Steel 2 video game Shinji. Shinji also tends to have streaks of clumsiness which end up with him in many compromising positions with either Asuka, Rei, or even both.

In the Girlfriend of Steel 2 manga, however, Shinji acts like his anime self, to the point where he doesn't have the perverted side of his personality that the Girlfriend of Steel 2 video game Shinji has. He also still acts shy and introverted around others, although he's generally friendly.


Sadamoto showing how to draw Shinji.

According to an interview with Yoshiyuki Sadamoto featured in volume 2 of the manga, Shinji's design is a male version of Sadamoto's design for Nadia, the title character from Nadia: The Secret of Blue Water, which Hideaki Anno also directed. He also initially designed the protagonist as an "Asuka-type girl" but this was eventually changed in favor of a boy, as Sadamoto suggested it'd fit a "robot story" better. Similarly, the relationship between Asuka and Shinji would be similar to the relationship between Jean, Nadia's love interest and eventual husband in the earlier Nadia.[8][9]

Sadamoto drew Shinji in an ordinary summer school uniform with a white shirt, making him "an average character", alongside Gendo as his first two designs. He wanted a "realistic and ordinary" boy, a character "that'll be hard for others to make".[10] Since Shinji lacks the enthusiasm and courage of other robot-anime heroes, Sadamoto gave him a different heroic interpretation: "rather than a reflection of a hero, sort of a refraction of a hero". At first, he tried to create a character "that would tap into the consciousness of today's anime fans". Shinji was first drawn with slightly different features, which were changed by the main staff. In one of Sadamoto's original proposals, he had long hair which would have covered his face or fluttered in the wind. Sadamoto changed his mind, finding his original design "too wild".[11]

Shinji's early designs

Shinji's birthday is the same day as his seiyu Megumi Ogata. This is a trait that can be found in several of the Evangelion characters, Rei Ayanami being an exception. Shinji's SDAT walkman is a WMD-DT1 model. Shinji was named after Evangelion animator Shinji Higuchi. Higuchi also had large involvement in animating Asuka's scenes and felt for her as if she were his daughter, and felt very strange to be called "stupid" or later "brat" by her during recording. Higuchi also couldn't stand being called "Shinji-kun" by Kaworu. He was relieved he didn't have to animate his scenes and that he was instead handed to Masayuki.[12] For the last name, he chose the Japanese word Ikari ("anchor"), linking it, alongside the names of other characters in the series, to nautical jargon or Japanese Imperial Navy warships, particularly Gendo and Kaji.[13] It could be seen that Shinji's preferred weapon in battle is the progressive knife seeing as he will usually go for that first in a battle. Shinji has never learned to swim. The two songs usually played on Shinji's SDAT are: Track 25 for "You are the only one" and Track 26 for "Blue Legend", respectively. The songs are from "Lilia from Ys", an image album for the "Ys" RPG series. The vocalist is Kotono Mitsuishi, Misato's voice actress. However, Episode 02 has two Eva BGM pieces playing, while Episode 23 has a different vocal song for Track 25 instead.

Early sketches of Shinji's plugsuit

Shinji's character was conceived to reflect Anno's personality "both in conscious and unconscious part".[14] Like all characters, Anno based Shinji on himself, and like Asuka and Misato, Anno considered Shinji as part of his conscious self.[15] He was thus represented as "a melancholic oral-dependent type" caught "in [an] oral stage", like Anno considered himself.[16] Seeing Shinji as a reflection of Anno, assistant director Kazuya Tsurumaki avoided depicting him as a brave character, since "Anno isn't that much of a hero".[17][18] "Shinji was summoned by his father to ride a robot, Anno was summoned by Gainax to direct an animation", he said.[19] Like other male protagonists in Gainax series, Shinji was conceived with a weak and insecure personality. Gainax wanted to reflect the psychological state of animation fans and the Japanese society, in which fathers are always at work and emotionally absent.[20] Anno set the protagonist at "age fourteen", when "independence of mind starts manifesting".[21] ShinjiInitially, Shinji. was more mature, robust and less introverted than the final version; he should also have been portrayed as a studious boy, a "quiet A-student".[22] His scholastic conduct would not be seen in a positive light, but as a sign of passivity.[23] Another material puts him as content with petty pleasures, but suffering in isolation.[24]

Although he's not shown to be physically active, early plans make mention of Shinji being good at sports and dedicated in physical education class as part of this. In an earlier Episode 5 draft, a scene was included with him playing basketball with Toji, and beating him with "a brilliant shot", driving the attention of his female classmates. However, this was deleted as the writers realized they didn't want to make Shinji seem too perfect, and his being oblivious to their attentions also made him more grounded. A scene where he is cheered by his classmates and seen as attractive and popular is retained afterwards.[25] As an overall goal, Shinji's age meant he was at a formative point in life.[26] In Anno's original outline for Episode 03, Shinji would reconcile with Toji and Kensuke easily, but this was eventually changed at the behest of screenwriter Akio Satsukawa, who called such a resolution too "anime-like".[27] Shinji's cello playing was an idea by scriptwriter Akio Satsukawa. He also picked Shinji's cello piece.[28][29] "I mustn't run away" ("Nigecha dameda!" in Japanese) becomes a trademark line delivered by Shinji starting in Episode 1. According to Hideaki Anno, this was the phrase that came to him and inspired him to keep working on and finish Evangelion. [30] XTC is the name found on the back of Shinji's shirt in Episode 22, which refers to a band in the real world by the same name. This New Wave band covers many of the themes that are associated with Evangelion. See example, Making Plans for Nigel.

Early sketch of Shinji alongside Toji and Kensuke

For the Evangelion manga, Sadamoto wondered "what the world looked like through Shinji's eyes", changing the main theme from "running or not running away" to "being honest with themselves".[31] This led Sadamoto to change Shinji's characterization and psychology. He wanted to reflect contemporary teenagers in the character and as more of a "bad boy",[32] and was influenced by the Gulf War, wondering how a 14-year-old would have behaved on a helicopter. [33] Sadamoto also drew on his own experiences as an adolescent, saying that his characterization was "more like a flunk-out" than Anno's version.[34] Sadamoto said he was not as comfortable with the image of a Shinji who'll hunker down and say "I can't do anything", but envisioned him as a someone who simply tried his best.[35] He conceived Shinji with a "clean image that a woman tends to project" in his mind, portraying him as a "cold, unambitious" character, "the type who would commit suicide, but can't bring himself to do it". "It was my intention to create a wistful character who had given up on life", he said. Sadamoto has mentioned he identified with Kensuke the most out of all characters, as Shinji himself is instead modelled on Anno, and for that, he preferred to have an alternate interpretation of Shinji, but not one based on himself. Instead, Sadamoto identified with Kensuke.[36][37]

In contrast to his comments in the 1990s regarding NGE, in 2009, after the release of Evangelion 2.0, Anno had instead said he identified with the younger adults.[38] and when making 3.0+1.0, he now identifies with Gendo rather than Shinji. For this reason, he felt incapable of developing Shinji's story, and asked for the input of his voice actress.[39][40][41]

Theories in Brief

Theory and Analysis:Shinji and Asuka's Relationship


  1. a general term used to describe various types of authority figures. In Shinji's case, the most likely translation could be "teacher," and this is the one used by ADV Films
  2. Shinji seems to be downplaying his talent. Despite his downplaying it in Episode 15, he can play Bach's Suite No. 1 Prelude in G major, BWV 1007, which is not a beginner level piece. "They represent an enormous body of work, taking over three hours to play in one sitting. They also represent a huge and never ending challenge for any cellist. Like so much of Bach's solo works for any instrument, the easier movements can be begun at an early stage, but some movements will be a source of stress for the rest of your life. . . . Anyway, all this makes Bach's venture quite an audacious one: I can only assume that there was a specific virtuoso for whom Bach wrote this set of suites. Either that, or he had the good fortune to have a pool of talented cellists, in spite of the humble nature of his station." (
    • Shinji is also seen playing the aforementioned piece in Evangelion Death, though it is an alternate universe Shinji playing this piece, not the same Shinji of the series.
  3. "With a black moon on her chest and wings on her back, Lilith activated her anti-A.T. Field. As all of humanity was blended into a sea of L.C.L. and the world greeted its beginning and end, Rei spoke to Shinji as Lilith. She showed Shinji that he was to become the new humanity, essentially leaving humanity's fate and the result of the Human Instrumentality Project in his hands." - The Essential Evangelion Chronicle Side B
  4. It seems unlikely she'd have spent much time with him already or know him well if she was not used to him acting confidently
  5. "It was a heavy burden for me, wondering if the fans would scold me for having such a newcomer hold hands with Shinji at the end (laughs). However, there have been many ways to portray "Eva" in the past, and if you can think of this as one of the possible endings, I'll be saved."" I feel that Mari just really likes people. She likes Shinji, but I think Asuka is special to Mari. Even though Asuka treats her coldly, Mari always calls her "Princess" and respects and protects her as a special person. In addition to the battles, they have together, the scene where she cuts her hair is very quiet and calm, and it has a nice sentimentality to it. I thought the contrast between the two was well-drawn. For the scene with Asuka, it was great to be able to record her voice with Yuko Miyamura. " - Maaya Sakamoto, 3.0+1.0 pamphlet interview
  6. '-Ms. Ogata, What kind of woman was Mari Illustrious? Ogata: I didn't know until the end ... because Shinji didn't even know her name until the end. -It's always someone else. Ogata: That's right, isn't it. Maybe. She was like a friend of his father and mother, right? At the end, I thought she would come to him to pick up that position. - Ogata's Newtype interview on 3.0+1.0
  7. Sound director in a VTuber interview: In a recent interview with V-tuber Vivian, the sound director for Evangelion 3.0+1.0 says he did not instruct the seiyuus of Shinji and Mari to act as lovers, he interpreted their relationship to be that of friends. It is mentioned that the station scene was not instructed as romantic. Whether they're lovers, friends, or family is left up to the viewer. Even the seiyuu will have different opinions about it. I'm sure this is what Anno is intending, for Eva to be like a "mirror" and give back what the viewer sees in it. That is Eva's appeal.
  8. EVA If it weren't for Sadamoto – Redux". Translation of interview with Yoshiyuki Sadamoto about designing the series. An easily recognizable silhouette is also important, but I designed the characters so that their personalities could be more or less understood at a glance. For example, even the color and length of the hair expresses personality. I thought that Asuka would occupy the position of an "idol" in the Eva world, and that [Asuka and] Shinji should be just like the relationship between Nadia and Jean.
  9. The story and the characters were worked out by the whole staff, but my indications in particular concerned, for example, the character of a character, or what voice he should have. The design, on the other hand, is mostly mine. At first we were influenced by Sailor Moon and the idea was to have an all-female cast, it was my suggestion to put in male characters as well. Shinji, for example, was a woman, I was the one who suggested he be a man. With an all-female cast, the story would have been completely different. Another idea I had was for the robots to be piloted by boys up to the age of fourteen. If the characters were adults they would be better, they would look more like experienced military men, but I wanted the robots to have a kind of maternal spirit in them, so only children would ride in them, and there would be a synchronization between the robot and the spirit. Sadamoto Days – i fan meet e l’intervista
  10. Genesis 0:0 - In The Beginning, translation
  11. Q: Did you have a model for his face.
    A: Not particularly. The image of a hero in Japan is like Ushiwakamaru, the strong champion whom no adversity will affect. When you say "hero" in Japan, it conjures the impression of a man, just prior to middle age, accomplished at arms, with a burning spirit. Or maybe you think or a bishonen (beautiful young man). In the beginning I gave Shinji longer hair, so in the dramatic scenes, it could hide his face or wave in the breaze. But when I drew that, he looked a little too wild-and so delicate the slightest pressure would break him. So finally I tried for a look where you could see the forhead through the bangs, shorter hair-the look of a boyish young girl. Spreaking in concreate terms, his eyes are a girl's eyes. I drew them exactly as I drew Nadia's [the heroine of Gainax's 1990 TV series Nadia, forthcoming in English from A.D.V. Films-ed.] eyes. He's a male Nadia, just as if I had given Nadia a masculine makeover. Lengthen the eyelashes and change the hair style, and you have Nadia.
    Q: You don't draw characters out of any love of simplicity.
    A: That's right. Our aim was to be the antithesis of all the giant robot animated shows around us. It's not a world where the wind blows through your hair while you declare your purpose in a booming voice. Especially in the past one or two years, this type of refractive, feminine character has not been seen. I wanted to tell the tale of a main character taken from my own life, so I designed a character straight from the more stoic part of myself. - Sadamoto, My Thoughts at the Moment
  12. "Evangelion is a work closely related to director Shinji Higuchi's name to the extent that the name of the main character was used. In the TV series, director Shinji Higuchi mainly participated in the part where 'Asuka' appeared. "She feels like a daughter," he said of Asuka."
    "Honestly, it didn't feel good to keep being called by my name during the recording process. Others keep calling me 'idiot' (ばか). Asuka used to call me a fool in the TV series and the old movie version, but the new theatrical version I became a kid (がKI) in Es. It was painful to listen to."
    [...]"I was worried that Kaworu would be entrusted to me, but fortunately, they entrusted him to Mahiro Maeda.
    To be honest, I don't have the confidence to draw Kaworu properly. As I say now, the thing I hated the most because the main character had my name on it was the scene in which Kaworu appeared. Whenever Kaworu said 'Shinji-kun', I couldn't stand it (laughs)"
    - GameFocus interview with Higuchi
  13. Kaji is named from the Japanese word for "rudder", forming a triad with Gendo and Shinji, whose surnames come from the words of other ship components, "anchor" (Ikari) and "sextant" (Rokubungi). See Character Name Origins
  14. Interview with Hideaki Anno (Aerial Magazine 01/1997)
  15. Eva Special Talk with Anno Hideaki and Toshiya Ueno (Newtype 11/1996)
  16. Parano
  17. Otakon - Kazuya Tsuramaki
  18. Red Cross Book
  19. "Amusing Himself to Death: Kazuya Tsurumaki speaks about the logic and illogic that went into creating FLCL".
  20. Carl Horn, FLCL is the Formula
  21. June 1996 NewType Interview with Hideaki Anno
  22. Evangelion Proposal
  23. Evangelion Chronicle 13
  24. Shinji: A human of flesh and blood, who enjoys sweet solitude and petty pleasures in the closed-off world of his own, all the while suffering between the thesis that is a breakaway from relative happiness and establishing oneself Kaworu: A vulnerable yet at the same time proud, pseudo-human from an idealized world that could be a target of self-insertion. The symbol of escapism that must be broken. (Then was it the predetermined necessity that Shinji had to kill him?) - Neon Genesis Evangelion Genesis0:0' the light from the darkness, minute 14:40
  25. Kensuke would also comment that he didn't seem like such a "sports freak". When Toji plays alone later in Episode 17, this was originally meant as a callback to this scene, and also to show Toji's self-doubt as he recognized he wasn't actually that good at sports. Evangelion Storyboard Collection, Vol 1 #5-14, vol 4 #17-36
  26. He is a 14-year-old middle school student in his second year. Now in puberty, and entering a rebellious age, he is in the last stages of forming his own self identify. In short, he is in the process of entering into adulthood. At first, he is indecisive and unsure in the heat of battle and in adult situations, while the opinions and views of the adults misguide and confuse him. Living in a time inundated by so much information, the image of the Japanese people today can be seen in him. The young protagonist believes he can do nothing by himself, but, as new experiences change him and he is able to look reality in the face, he learns and grows as a person. - Evangelion Proposal
  27. As for the fourth episode, I just couldn't accept that Shinji and Toji were on good terms at the end of the third episode in Mr. Anno's original draft, so I told him this kind of anime-like development must be spat out. I told Mr. Anno, that it would be natural for any boy to if you're told 'get in the robot' out of blue, and like that, I wrote episode four. - Love & Pop Theatrical Booklet (1998)
  28. Interviewer: Shinji also played the cello, and played music once, didn’t he? Or else, was that a variety of therapy, or something? Anno: No, I don’t know. That was the scriptwriters’ idea. Well, it was just that the character gave off the feeling of a cello.
  29. Satsukawa: I picked the cello piece that Shinji plays in episode 15. If I knew that "DEATH"s OST would win first place in Oricon, I would have cared more about the movie, too. - Love & Pop Theatrical Booklet (1998)
  30. Hideaki Anno: What were we trying to make here?
  31. Parano, pp. 136
  32. In the anime I work with Anno, so nothing is entirely my choice, while in the manga I have more freedom to go into what I want. The biggest difference, for example, is that in the manga Shinji is presented as a bad boy, which is not so explicit in the anime. In the manga Shinji doesn't want to do anything, he's not someone who wants to put his all into it, while in the anime he's a bit more positive, he says "I don't have to run away!". Sadamoto Days – i fan meet e l’intervista
  33. Sadamoto, Milano Manga Days 2014
  34. Interview with Yoshiyuki Sadamoto, Animerica Vol. 6, No. 8
  35. Young Ace, Vol. 1, pg. 2
  36. "I think I was pretty sociable. But I didn't like to stand out. In terms of characters, I was probably more like Kensuke. I wasn't that straightforward, honor student type, and I was often told that I was calm. It seems that I give up quickly, but in fact I am persistent. I wasn't what you'd call a delinquent, but I did a lot of bad things and reflected on them. I think that part of me is similar to Shinji in the manga." -Yoshiyuki Sadamoto: The Other Side of the Story (Newtype 12/1997)
  37. "Among the characters of Evangelion, Sadamoto sees himself a lot in Kensuke Aida, a military otaku who really likes girls, but he also empathized a lot with Gendo Ikari, as, being both fathers of families, he saw himself in his dilemmas, in his parental anxieties and difficulties in establishing relationships with children. He doesn't feel like Shinji in the least." Milan Manga Festival 2014
  38. "We naturally put ourselves in the shoes of the 14-year-old Shinji, who was cornered and repeatedly said, "You can't run away," but now, more than 10 years later, many fans may feel closer to Ryoji Kajiand Misato Katsuragi, whom they admired.
    Anno said, "Now I feel more for Misato, Kaji, and Ritsuko than I do for Shinji. - Tsurumaki Interview, July 2009 AERA Magazine
  39. (Ogata): So I asked, "Why did you ask me that in the first place!?" I don't know if it was instrumental at that time or what it meant, but he said, "Among the members of this meeting only Todoroki (Ikki) and you understand Shinji's feelings”. (laughs). So I had a little discussion with the staff about how Shinji would act. (Ogata):"One day, I got a call from Khara, Inc. saying, 'We'd like to discuss the scenario,' so I went there and had a meeting. Anno said, 'I want to know your opinion on how to deal with Shinji's inability to speak at the end of 3.0.' "I told him, 'I'll do whatever Anno decides,' but he said, 'Now I feel closer to Gendou than Shinji. The only people who can understand Shinji's feelings now are Ogata and [Anno's assistant] Ikki Todoroki' (laughs)." - Evangelion 3.0+1.0 Assorted Translations
  40. Ritsuko's name, incidentally, was borrowed from a girlfriend of series creator Hideaki Anno that introduced him to sci-fi and shojo manga: In junior high school, Anno had a friend - nowadays, he says, you would call her a girlfriend - named Ritsuko, who had a major impact on his life and introduced him to sci-fi and shojo manga - 2nd June Interview
  41. "Megumi Ogata also explains that for the first time, Hideaki Anno asked her which ending the actress preferred "as Shinji". Will Ms. Ogata's choice be the one that will conclude the tetralogy? Is this a false lead sown by the director? The future and posterity will tell us!" - Japan Expo 2019 - Things seen #9: Evangelion marks the 20th anniversary of Japan Expo!

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 | Mr. Langley | Keel Lorenz | Pen Pen
Rebuild of Evangelion: Asuka Shikinami Langley | Mari Makinami Illustrious | Sakura Suzuhara | Ryoji Kaji (Jr)
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