Eva is about rebuilding at the end of everything, about what we hold onto. In episode 21, former professor Kozo Fuyutsuki laments to Yui, holding baby Shinji, over the loss of autumn, a nostalgia for what can’t be rebuilt. Everyday is the same now, and I can’t get over that stillness: the stillness of Japan, the approaching stillness of our ocean currents.
As someone that grew up in Florida, it’s not like I’m very familiar with seasons to begin with. My experience with fall comes almost entirely from pictures online and media like Night in the Woods. The nostalgia for what can’t be rebuilt is also a nostalgia for what I never had. Now that I’m reaching an age where I can travel more frequently and maybe move up north after graduation, fall is becoming a shorter, less expressive period between long, harsh summers and blasts of winter. I may never have that either.
I wonder if Shinji and Asuka miss autumn as much as me.
Girlhood, a girlhood that never even happened, can’t be rebuilt. What’s so painful about this nostalgia — what makes Fuyutsuki’s expression so striking — is how it’s irreconcilable. So I hold onto anything. My own name — the name I chose — and to those things that I never had.