[Discourse] “I Am Not a Doll”: Rei Ayanami, Escapism, and Objectified Images of Desire

SPOILERS: for the Evangelion franchise Twenty-six episodes, two movies, a yet-to-be-completed remake/sequel(?) film tetralogy, and a whole lot of fan-wank later, Neon Genesis Evangelion continues to reign as one of anime’s most lucrative, most groundbreaking, and most perplexing works. There are a million-and-one ways we can interpret Evangelion, but as you’ve probably guessed, this article will be looking at it (the original series and The End of Evangelion) from a feminist standpoint. Girls, women, and female-aligned celestial beings play central roles within the series, threading issues of motherhood, female ambition, and sexuality throughout.