This is my last post on Evangelion during what Rossiroad dubbed Evangelion month and it is my last post on Evangelion before my review. In my last Evangelion post I answered my own question regarding why “Fly Me To The Moon,” the shows ed song, was in English. Today I will talk about how this song, which was not written for Evangelion, holds so much meaning in it and encapsulates the shows underlying theme.
The song was originally called “In Other Words” and These lyrics are the bridge between the lyrics about the moon and stars and the lyrics about love and loving. In Japan it was once common for someone to say “the moon is beautiful tonight” instead of I love you and the reply to this was “I would die for you.”
Every character in Evangelion has lost, is searching for, doesn’t understand or doesn’t know how to or can’t convey love. This is what they all lack. The song represents this lack of ability.
outside of simply playing this song at the end end of the episode it also is used instrumentally at key moments in the series. I wish to point out a specific instance of this. Kaji, Misato’s lover, doesn’t say I love you, but is very pointedly referring to these words, during a specific scene in the series. If you listen to the background music it is “Fly Me To The Moon” that is playing at that moment.
It also seems to me that the only way some of the characters can show who they are and that they do love others is by battling the angels in the EVAs or other wise. They would die doing this, Rei very much so the most willing to die even though others have commented this could be due to a lack of self worth and she herself says she wishes to die I think it could also be a way of showing, likely unknowingly, her love. This brings the second part of the Japanese phrase into play “I would die for you. ” They need this because the opposite of love is hate and the absence of love is nothing. When you have nothing you are worthless and when you are hated or only hate there is no real point to continue on living, This is something Shinji deals with throughout the series.
“Fly Me to The Moon” is a beautiful American song, but if you look at it through the lens of Japanese language it conveys so much more. This is the underlying theme of Neon Genesis Evangelion.