None of us should be defined by any one thing we’re into. Inst`ead, we should each be defined by the cross-section of two very different things we’re into. For Tessa Thompson—just as an example—that’s 1) incredible acting and 2) goats. For Joe Manganiello, that’s 1) Dungeons & Dragons and 2) Cheetos & Water. (Is that four things? We’re rounding down.) And for director Ondřej Hudeček, those two things are ostensibly 1) The Olympics and 2) anime. And this particular overlap stirred quite a delightful frenzy among the anime-loving corners of Twitter recently.
In 2018, Czechoslovakia-born filmmaker Hudeček released the documentary titled The Nagano Tapes: Rewound, Replayed & Reviewed. The film chronicles the Czech Republic’s victory of the gold medal in ice hockey at the 1998 Winter Olympics. Though now three years old, only very recently did the film earn a spot free for the viewing on the official Olympics website. Naturally, this platform earned the scrappy production a few more curious eyes. And one of the main things a new batch of viewers noticed: its use of the Neon Genesis Evangelion theme song over its opening titles.
You can watch the theme itself just below, and head over to the Olympics website to watch the film. (The song kicks in within the first two minutes.)
Given the zealous fandom inspired by Neon Genesis Evangelion, this discovery lit a proverbial fire on social media. It begin with one viral tweet, below, surreptitiously plugging the unexpected crossover.
I cannot stress enough just how much you need to stop whatever it is you are doing and watch the opening titles of this documentary. I promise you're not ready for what's coming. https://t.co/UenN1Zs9iO— watching wrestling again (@VoltySquirrel) May 27, 2021
The tweet went viral, gaining the attention of a very pleased Hudeček, who responded in turn:
It took me 3 years, but I finally made Anime Twitter go nuts. pic.twitter.com/DVd7LP5e4y— Ondřej Hudeček (@ondrejhudecek) May 27, 2021
At first, the riotous reaction among NGE fans involved speculation that the inclusion was the result of oblivion. But it’s clear now that Hudeček, an avowed lover of the anime himself, knew what he was doing. On Thursday, following the uproar, Hudeček even spoke to Polygon about the choice to include the musical number. More than just being a good sport, it seems as though the documentarian is reveling in the attention finding his film. And from a not-terribly-expected corner of the ‘net. It just goes to show: none of us can be defined by any one thing. Two, sure. Two is fine. Who likes more than two things, anyway?