I went into this volume with high hopes. While that may sound somewhat delusional given Dark Horse’s, how should I put it, decidedly uneven track record when it comes to “Evangelion” manga there’s actually a reason for it. The “Evangelion Comic Tribute” anthology stands as one of the company’s better publications regarding this legendary anime franchise. One of its high points were the multiple shorts from writer Yushi Kuwata and artist Yukito which were as funny as they were savage in their takedown of the conventions from that series. They were good enough to make me want more, and now I’ve wound up with exactly what I wanted.
If that last statement sounds just a little bit ominous, that’s because I’m trying to misdirect you from what I actually thought about this series. The individual chapters of “Legend of the…” may not be as densely packed with comic goodness as the ones by the creators in the “Comic Tribute” were, but the jokes hit more often than not. While a good portion of them rely on sight gags and wordplay, ably localized by Carl Horn as usual, much of the jokes stem from the warped but still recognizable interpretations of the main characters. Shinji may have confidence and self-esteem issues, but even he’ll try to throw down with his dad when he’s had enough. Gendo also rushes right past his detached indifference to his son into active trolling, comparing the act of pulling out Shinji’s controller during a game to when he didn’t pull out in time and has been regretting it ever since.
As much as I enjoyed this, I recognize that a healthy knowledge of “Evangelion,” specifically the cast and their personalities, is necessary to getting most of the jokes here. So if you’re not already onboard that particular train of anime fandom, you’d best stay away. All “Evangelion” fans looking for some good laughs at the expense of its cast, however, should pick up a copy right now.