Have you ever wanted to cosplay as Shinji Ikari, the protagonist of Neon Genesis Evangelion? If you love music, enjoy wearing school uniforms, and deeply care about others, you’re already on the right track. Here’s how you can emulate the thoughtful Shinji Ikari.
Part 1: Preparing for the Role
Watch the Episodes and Movies:
Understand Shinji’s fears, thoughts, and desires by repeatedly watching the episodes and movies. You can also read the manga, but keep in mind that Yoshiyuki Sadamoto, the manga’s author and character designer, sees Shinji differently from Hideaki Anno, the main writer and director.
Wear a Japanese School Uniform:
Unlike most cosplays, this outfit won’t look out of place in daily life. It’s simple: a short-sleeved white button-down shirt, a black undershirt, and black pants. Complete the look with a dark leather belt and plain white high-top sneakers. Ensure your dress shirt is thick enough so the black undershirt doesn’t show through.
Style Your Hair Like Shinji’s:
Shinji’s hair is simple and normal. Cut your hair clean and short, but without curls. Have slightly uneven and long bangs, just touching your eyebrows. Give yourself a middle part. Dye your hair a very dark brown to match his if necessary. If you prefer to keep your hair as is and are simply working on a Shinji cosplay for a convention, use a wig.
Use Headphones and Listen to Music Frequently:
Shinji uses a fictional technology called an SDAT player that resembles a portable cassette player. Although cassette players are now obsolete, they’re not hard to find. Alternatively, you can always use an MP3 player. To really get in the mood, listen to classical music, preferably Bach (Suite No.1 Prelude for Cello).
Learn to Play the Cello or Another Instrument:
Despite Shinji’s apparent lack of skill, he is actually a proficient cellist. His shy way of playing the cello has been a standout trait since the original series.
Part 2: Acting Like Shinji in Daily Life
- Act Shy: Shinji is very introverted and prefers to spend his time alone or with a small group of people. He is also very modest and insecure.
- Travel by Subway Whenever Possible: A commuter train is Shinji’s main source of transportation. Shinji also rides the train all day to avoid his responsibilities.
- Seek Love and Approval: Shinji wants to be loved by everyone, especially his previously estranged father. Shinji cares a lot about what others think.
- Do What You’re Told: Due to Shinji’s need for external validation, he often does what authority figures demand. He is extremely passive.
- Apologize Often: One of Shinji’s negative qualities is that he completely lacks confidence and often blames himself for things that are not his fault.
- Don’t React to Insult or Seek a Fight: Be kind and gentle with others. Shinji is, at heart, a very compassionate character.
- Debate with Yourself About Almost Everything You Do: Shinji is very introspective and tends to overthink things.
Tips and Warnings
The guide ends with some tips and warnings for those who want to cosplay as Shinji. It reminds readers that this is just an act and not to take it too seriously. It also warns about some negative aspects of Shinji’s character that you wouldn’t want to imitate.
Remember, while cosplaying can be fun, it’s important to maintain a healthy mindset and not get too absorbed into the character. Enjoy the process and have fun embodying Shinji Ikari!