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"I died once... I'm simply returning the favor. The only reason I'm alive... is to kill Gendo Ikari." -Setsuna Ayanami

Setsuna Ayanami (刹那綾波) is the protagonist of Evangelion: Alternative, designated as the Third Child. He takes the place of Shinji Ikari in the story, piloting Evangelion Unit-01, and later on, Evangelion Unit-13.

Setsuna Ayanami

刹那綾波

Full Name Setsuna Ayanami
Alias
  • Setsu-kun (by Misato)
  • Aya-kun (by Ritsuko)
  • Se-chan (by Kaji)
  • Bad Boy (by Mari)
  • Yehowah (by NERV)
Born In Tokyo, Japan
Hair Black (Pre-3rd Impact), Black & White (Post-3rd Impact)
Eyes Brown (Pre-3rd Impact), Red (Post-3rd Impact)
Nationality Japanese
Relationships
  • Gendo Ikari (adoptedfather)
  • Yui Ikari (adopted mother) (deceased)
  • Misato Katsuragi (guardian)
Eva
  • Evangelion Unit-01
  • Evangelion Unit-13
Designation Third Child
Rank Pilot
First Appearance The Day Before: Melancholy of the Angels
Last Appearance Final Reckoning: Epitah of Godhood
Appearances

Evangelion: Alternative

Evangelion: Alternative (Part II)

Evangelion: Alternative (Part III)

PersonalityEdit

In early childhood, Setsuna was a giant ball of curiosity, taking great interest in his mother and father's work. According to Gendo while reminiscing, he was also a brilliant young mind, already having a sort of grasp on what they were trying to accomplish, and hinted that Setsuna, though unaware of the discovery, had come to know of SEELE's own plans without realizing it. He was attached to both of his parents, as he they had adopted him from the streets. He was also particularly close to his father back then as well, recalling a time when the boy, back when he was nothing more than a toddler, hugged his pants leg, even at work.

Seven years have changed him significantly. He is still a bright young man, having the top scores in his class, but seems rather withdrawn. Like Shinji, he makes no attempts at making friends, thinking that he would only bother them while they go on in their life, and instead, let them come to him. He's also a bit hot-headed, and does not like to be insulted. One example was when Asuka berated him for not helping her deal with the Seventh Angel, despite the fact that he and Misato were on their way to NERV after having visited his mother's grave with Gendo when it happened. In respose, Setsuna grew angry and told her that she should work on her maneuver's, saying that she looked like a clown. Despite his faults, however, Setsuna is very loyal and trusting of his friends, not willing to abandon them under any circumstances, as was the case with Asuka after Evangelion Unit-03 became corrupted and under the control of the Ninth Angel.

Strangely, he doesn't appear to take praise well, especially if it comes from his father. Whenever told a job well done, or that he performed excellent in his objective, he becomes bashful and has a habit of scratching his cheek in embarrassment. His view on his father is cordeal at best: he treats him as his superior, nothing more, but shows the ocassional signs of the father-son relationship they both bear. He also admitted to Rei that, while he hates his father for abandoning him after his mother died, he cannot deny that he was also responsible for giving him a home when no one else would. As a result, he states that he both loves, and hates Gendo. He is also thankful for his father for having given him the chance to actually make a difference in the world through the power of the Evangelion, something that amuses Fuyutsuki.

However, after the events of the Near Third Impact, Setsuna's personality has changed drastically. He is cold, detached, and no longer has any memories of his time before initiating the Near Third Impact, recalling only a girl with red eyes (Rei), and the desire to protect her, as well as the urge to kill Gendo Ikari. He also responds to the WILLE's initial cold attitude towards him with hostility, telling them that if they had a problem with him, they should just kill him, if they're willing to get killed in the process. In battle, he displays a ruthless behavior, forgoing tactics completely and instead goes head-first into battle to utterly decimate his opponent, signifying the maddening grin on his face. His entire focus is centered on the battle, not hearing the words of others or his enemies, and constantly shouts the word "die" as he tries to destroy whatever is in his path. He also has no qualms about having Unit-01 devour the Mass Production Evangelions, telling either the auto-pilot system, or the pilot themself, that since they tried to kill him, they have no right to complain if they get eaten.

Despite this cold and brutal self, he does seem to recall his friends in some way. When he first met Asuka after fourteen years, in response to her calling him a blithering dumbass, he calls her a hot-headed bitch, the very same thing he said to her when they first met. He also muttered absent-mindedly that Misato still reeks like booze, frowning in confusion afterwards behind the meaning of those words. He also tries to avoid Mari, calling her something even more frightening than even the Angels and the Evangelion. Out of everyone though, he appears to get along with Kaworu, treating him differently than the others while also feeling a sort of kinship with the boy. Ritsuko later suggested that the reason behind Setsuna's newfound behavior is that his soul and Rei's, after having been extracted from Zeruel, must have merged together, thus being a new being entirely. It was also hinted that he witnessed some of Rei's memories, thus learning about Gendo's plan to revive his late wife through the Impacts, a plan similar to SEELE's objective, except with a different purpose in mind.

AppearanceEdit

Setsuna is a fairly tall individual, often described as handsome or even a pretty boy by his peers, with messy black hair and brown eyes. Though he has been seen wearing different types of clothes throughout the series, he is always seen wearing a dark blue dress shirt with a light green v-neck underneath it, along with a pair of light blue jeans and worn out sneakers. His Plug Suit is virtually the same as Shinji's, except the blue colors are now light gray. After establishing a solid relationship with Rei, he wears a red scarf she had knitted for him around his neck.

In Part II, Setsuna's appearance has changed quite a bit. Due to the "Curse of Eva", he has not aged at all in the past 14 years, having slept inside Evangelion Unit-01 in that time. His black hair has developed white streaks, and his eyes have become red. He no longer smiles like he used to, and when he does, it is always feral, tainted with madness. While apart of WILLE, he wears a black leather blazer with a white shirt and denim jeans, complete with a brown belt and a bronze buckle, along with black combat boots. He still wears the scarf Rei gave him. His Plug Suit's design has also changed, bearing more of a resemblance to the one worn by Kaworu, except with light gray and orange streaks running down the sides of his legs and arms.

StoryEdit

You Are (Not) AloneEdit

You Can (Not) AdvanceEdit

You Can (Not) ExistEdit

Powers and AbilitiesEdit

High Intelligence - Even at a young age, Setsuna displayed a brilliant mind, having earned a sort of grasp on the Evangelion, and while unaware of his own discovery, the Human Instrumentality Project. In present day, he still retains his intelligence, able to form strategies and adjusting them accordingly to the situation. Most of the plans he makes, more often than not, have been estimated to have an 83% chance of success, as observed by Fuyutsuki.

Master Hand-to-Hand Combat - After being sent to live with his father's relatives, Setsuna, at an unknown period of time, began to study the martial arts, a skill that would later affect his piloting capabilities and increasing his own prowess as the end result. He stated that he wasn't anywhere close to a Black Belt, yet still shows an impressive, display of strength. In the battle against Sachiel, Setsuna was able to rip off the Angel's arms with brute strength alone, and had even managed to snap it's neck while holding it in a choke-hold.

Weapons Expert - Though he has little knowledge about firearms, his time working with NERV has allowed him to wield knives expertly, often relying on those rather than guns, a flaw with Gendo states to be rather fatal when it comes to his own survival. Thanks to Asuka's training with him, he was able to use firearms effectively.

Angel Powers - In Part II, after Unit-01 consumed the blood-like remains of Zeruel, it transcended to a plane of godhood, able to enact what came to be known as the Near Third Impact. This transcendency had also seemingly affected Setsuna as well, as he is capable of feats only an Angel should be able to pull off. He possessed enhanced speed, strength, and stamina. As a show of display, when he emerged from Unit-01's cockpit after saving Asuka from the Mass Production Evas, he was met with armed forced, guns trained on him. With almost frightening, and inhuman speed and efficiency, Setsuna destroyed the guns and incapacitated the guards, much to the shock and disbelief of WILLE. It is theorized by Ritsuko that Setsuna may have perhaps absorbed some of the Angel's own essence into himself, thus becoming a pseudo-Angel like being in the process. Hence, NERV has given him the designation "Yehowah", the New Angel.

  • Absolute Terror Field - Setsuna is apparently capable of producing an AT-Field of his own without the assistance of an Eva, capable of deflecting bullets and mortar shells. The shield itself is sturdy, but it cannot hold out against massive amounts of brute force, such as a strike from an Eva. An example of this would be when Mari stepped on Setsuna in Unit-08. He deployed the AT-Field, though after Mari removed her foot, it was revealed to have cracks running all over it.
  • Spear of Light - Other than an AT-Field, Setsuna is capable of creating a spear, or a lance of sorts, using it as an offensive weapon that is very efficient against the Mass Production Evangelions. It can cut through their AT-Fields rather easily, though it has little to no affect at all against the Angels.

Berserk Mode - After Unit-01's transcendency into an almost god-like being, Setsuna appears to have his own variation of Berserk mode, signifyed by his eyes glowing blood red, his hair flourishing white, and his molars becoming sharp. His shadow also appears to resemble a creature of some sort, with it's only defining features being its crimson red eyes and the angelic wings extending out from his body. While in this state, he can force the Eva into entering Berserk Mode at will, bearing a feral-like grin, and becomes solely focused on utterly annihilating his enemies. No matter who the enemy is, he will destroy them. This primordeal-like state can apparentlty also influence those around him. Asuka entered a similar state, except her eyes became red, and shared the same demented grin that Setsuna had. This also applies to the Evangelions around him, sans the Mass Produced models. They will begin to show signs of entering Berserk Mode themselves, struggling to free themselves of their restraints, even while in battle, and will begin to act like wild beasts. A common trait of this state is that, all those under it's influence will repeat the word, "Die!"

Relationships Edit

Gendo Ikari Edit

Gendo and Setsuna's relationship is, more or less, cordial at best, but also strange. Gendo and Yui first found Setsuna when he was only six years old, surviving on his own out on the streets. Yui, saddened to see a child like this, and Gendo, who was impressed by his strong will to survive, adopted him into their family. Initially, they wanted him to take on the name Ikari, though Setsuna later said the name 'Ayanami' sounded beautiful, hence he was named Setsuna Ayanami, instead of Setsuna Ikari. Gendo taught Setsuna everything he knew, thus allowing the boy to grow into a brilliant mind. For the first in time in his life, Gendo felt happy with the boy. However, this peaceful life came to an abrupt end when Yui was absorbed into Evangelion Unit-01's core. This incident left Gendo leaving the boy alone, and sending him to live with Yui's relatives. Despite that, Gendo still tries to keep in touch with Setsuna.

Seven years has had little changes on their relationship, though they have little contact. Outside of military protocols, Setsuna calls him "father" rather than "Papa", like he used to, showing some signs of distaste. However, Setsuna later confessed to Rei that he both loves his father, and hates him. He hates his father for abandoning him, and loves him for taking him in when no one else would. Overtime, their relationship starts to return, as in the second half of Part I, he calls him "Dad", but still refers to him as Commander Ikari while on duty.

In Part II, however, Setsuna no longer has any memories of his life from before the Near Third Impact, and only recalls to three things: a girl with red eyes, whom he feels a strong urge to protect, and the desire to kill Gendo Ikari, stating that he is simply "returning the favor". It is implied that Setsuna and Rei's souls merged together while inside Eva Unit-01, and thus, Setsuna saw her memories, possibly including Gendo's plans to reunite with Yui by hijacking SEELE's plans for Human Instrumentality.

Rei Ayanami Edit

Setsuna established a friendly, cordial co-worker relationship with Rei at first, though both are curious towards one another for them sharing the same family name and other reasons. Setsuna also notices the striking resemblance between Rei and his mother, suspecting something that his father was not telling him, but remained silent. When Rei asked him what he thought of Gendo, he answered that he both hated his father for abandoning him, and that he loved him for taking him in, saying that, no matter how much time passed, he would always be grateful. He also stated that, because of his father, he could now make a difference with the Evangelion, something that pleases Rei to an extent, and refers to him by name rather than Third Child.

After the incident with the Sixth Angel, Rei and Setsuna steadily grow closer as time passes, with Rei seemingly confused about her desire to be close to Setsuna, and strives to try and get both him and his father together again as family. She also shows a sisterly affection towards the boy as well, shown worrying about him after the battle with the Eighth Angel and asking how his hands were. She is also completely unaware of Setsuna's flustered state whenever he sees her naked, or when they are in an intimate position, something that apparently amuses Gendo. The closeness between Setsuna and Rei is further expressed when she is seemingly killed by Zeruel by consuming her and Evangelion Unit-00, causing Setsuna to go into an absolute rage, and thus forcing Eva Unit-01 into it's Berserker Form. He viciously attacks and decimates the Tenth Angel, demanding that it give Rei back to him. This apparent want to reclaim Rei is enough to make the Eva transcend into a god-like state, and initiate the Near Third Impact.

In Part II, Setsuna has little to no recollection of Rei, only remembering her as a girl with red eyes, and wants to protect her at all costs while also harboring the desire to kill Gendo. One of Rei's clones, dubbed "Rei Q" by fans, expresses the same sort of sisterly affection with Setsuna that the other Rei exhibited, though it is later revealed that all clones of the Ayanami series show this behavior, calling him "Brother". Though she does not possess any of Setsuna's Rei's memories, Rei Q still considers him important, and follows him wherever he goes, thus earning her the nickname "Puppy Girl" by Mari. Despite her loyalty to Gendo, she places Setsuna's wishes above his own, further showing her connection to Setsuna.

Asuka Langley Shikinami Edit

At first, the two are like fire and ice. When Asuka first met Setsuna, she berated him for not helping her, though she later stated that she didn't need any help. She was unaware at the time that he and Misato were returning to NERV at the time of the Seventh Angel's attack after Setsuna visited his mother's grave with Gendo. In response, Setsuna insulted her skills, saying that her maneuvering looked like something a third-rate clown would do. This serves to spark a sort of antagonist relationship between Asuka and Setsuna, though it later escalates into a rivalry when she witnesses the level of skill he displays, along with his efficient combat plans and ingenuity. During the Unit-03 activation test, Asuka later thought of Setsuna, wondering what he would say to her. She is later seen screaming out for him when the Ninth Angel overtakes the Evangelion.

Fourteen years later, Asuka shows obvious disgust and hatred towards Setsuna, and doesn't appear to care for his current amnesiac state. She blames him for the Near Third Impact, hinting that their friends died in the event. However, this hate vanishes when Setsuna rescues her from the Mass Production Evangelions, and watches in horror as he devours them. She also overhears his words to one of the pilots of the Mass Produced Evas, unable to believe her ears.

"You tried to kill me earlier... so you have no right to complain if 'she' eats you, understand?"

After the incident, she is in a state of confusion, wondering if that really is the same Setsuna she pulled out of the cockpit. She later confronts him after Rei Q appears, having apparently been looking for Setsuna alongside Kaworu, defecting from NERV. When she asks him why he saved her, he responded that he didn't, saying that he only wanted to restore Unit-01's functions, and to become stronger to fulfill his goal. Asuka, seeing the cold look in his eyes, tries to touch him, but Sestuna grabs her wrist, and tells her with a demented grin that he died once already, and wished to repay the favor by killing Gendo Ikari.

WILLE Edit

At first, the group is cold and indifferent towards Setsuna, blaming him for the Near Third Impact, and thus making him out to be the scapegoat for all their sorrows and regrets. Only one of their members, Sakura, doesn't share their hatred, due to Setsuna's relationship with her brother. After Setsuna rescues Asuka, they try to subdue him, only for him to retaliate and destroy his aggresors, later telling them that if they hated him, they should try to kill him. However, afterwards, he tells them that if they try to kill them, none of them will walk away alive. Misato and Ristuko are disturbed by his newfound brutality and ruthlessness on the battlefield, along with his seemingly Angelic-like powers. With knowledge of his abilities, the crew now avoids him out of fear.

Misato Katsuragi Edit

Misato acted as Setsuna's guardian while with NERV, acting as support and consoling him whenever he found himself in low spirits, sporting a sort-of motherly affection to him. She also berates him for doing stupid things, such as destroying the Fifth Angel when he was ordered to evacuate his friends, who were supposed to be in shelters at the time. Nonetheless, she deeply cares for him.

In Part II, their relationship has become skewed and disfigured, for lack of better words. At first, Misato bears a stance similar to Gendo, torn between blaming him for the Near Third Impact, which left humanity crippled, but also wondering if he is still the same, hero-complex idiot she looked after. When he saved Asuka, she ordered that he be detained, but to her shock, he easily subdued his aggressors, and told WILLE that if they hated him, they should try to kill him, but warned them that if they attempt to do so, they "may not walk out alive". When it is revealed he has amnesia, Misato grows heartbroken, and any attempts she makes to reach out to him are for naught, as he is solely focused on killing Gendo, nothing more. However, she does grow hope when she hears him mutter absent mindedly, "She still smells like booze."

Ritsuko Akagi Edit

Ritsuko acted as Setsuna's health councelor, looking after him whenever his health started to show decline and such. She would also offer him sound advice, and occasionally as favors for him. However, she is not without reservations, as she grows worried about the number of times Unit-01 has gone into it's Berserk Form whenever Setsuna is in danger, or when his mental state has reached a certain point. Ritsuko was also the first to see that Setsuna's desire to rescue Rei, no matter the cost, was the sole reason for Evangelion Unit-01's transcendence to a god-like being.

In Part II, she is among the majority who harbor resentments toward Setsuna for the Near Third Impact, and opted for the plan to place a bomb around his neck to ensure he would not pilot an Evangelion, possibly in fear of another Impact. However, after learning of his amnesia, his Angel-like abilities, and new personality, she speculates that the absence of Rei may attribute to the possibility of Setsuna no longer having any memories, and his obsession with protecting Rei Q, when she appears, having defected from NERV to look for him, and his desire to kill Gendo Ikari. When questioned by Mari if it is okay for someone as brutal and lethal as him to be on board, Ristuka merely replies, "It gives me a chance to look at the new Setsuna Ayanami."

Her relationship with Setsuna, at this point, is more or less similar to what they had in Part I, though Setsuna's stubborn behavior is enough to make her irritated to the point where she threatens to sedate him. She is also curious in his Angel abilities, hypothesizing that he may taken some of Zeruel's essence into himself when Unit-01 achieved it's near god-like status.

TriviaEdit

  • Setsuna shares some characteristics and facts with a few other characters from other series.
    • He shares the same name as Setsuna F. Seiei from the series, Mobile Suit Gundam 00.
    • His words about dying once and returning the favor is in reference to Akito Hyuga, the protagonist of Code Geass: Akito the Exiled. Furthermore, he also shares Akito's tendencies to act when under the influence of his brother's Geass: absolute ruthless behavior and bestial-like strength, not stopping until the enemy is dead at his feet.
  • Setsuna doesn't like spicy foods.
  • Setsuna's favorite colors are purple, red, and orange.
  • Setsuna hates those who try to belittle others to make themselves feel better, calling them fools who delude themselves.
  • Though never stated, it is heavily implied that Setsuna has feelings for Asuka and Rei.

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