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In an announcement that should please longtime fans as well as the curious, Netflix has revealed that it will be adding all 26 episodes of the beloved series Neon Genesis Evangelion to its streaming library sometime in the Spring of 2019.
Set in the future of 2015, Evangelion revolves around its main cast of teenage pilots, who harness their Evangelion (see: spooky organic mecha) to defend a post-apocalyptic world from suspiciously-dubbed extraterrestrials: Angels. Series creator and director Hideaki Anno had previously worked as an animator on such classics as Hayao Miyazaki’s Nausicaä of the Valley of the Wind and Isao Takahata’s Grave of the Fireflies, indicative perhaps of Evangelion‘s combination of sci-fi action and deep psychological exploration.
The landmark 1995 series has been somewhat difficult for the average otaku to track down. A series of DVDs have been long out of print, fetching high prices on places like eBay, and streaming services have been chugging along without the biotech-bots.
Alongside the 26 episodes, the feature films The End of Evangelion and Evangelion: Death(True)2 will be made available for Netflix subscribers, presumably as the same time. End serves as a higher-budgeted retelling of the original series finale, while Death serves as an amalgamation of two TV movies meant to tighten the existing final episodes while adding new footage. Confused? Me too.
As someone who’s always been a fan of giant robots (thus encompassing not only mecha, but our pals the Autobots and others!) Evangelion has naturally appealed to me, the promise of seemingly-organic machines and deeply-troubled young pilots sounds like fascinating layer on the mythos. Throw in the allusions to world religions and the exploration of Freudian methods and Evangelion sounds like an utter riot! But like many I’ve been somewhat put off by the hunt to actually watch the show. Netflix is doing right by me and they didn’t even know it.
Also announced at the Akiba Theatre in Tokyo, Netflix will be bringing stop-motion animation Rilakkuma and Kaoru, a new Ultraman, a CG-adaptation of Saint Seiya: Knights of the Zodiac, and an adaptation of 7Seeds to subscribers come Spring.