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  • Too many to various world religions (particularly Judaism and Christianity) to list, or possibly even detect.
  • Misato's "Yebisu" beer is actually labeled with a parody of the real label which references the manga Oruchuban Ebichu, of which both Anno and seiyuu Kotono Mitsuishi were fans. Anno later developed it into an anime at Mitsuishi's recommendation.
  • By Word of God, Rei Ayanami's first name alludes to Sailor Mars.
  • The Human Instrumentality Project was named after Cordwainer Smith's Instrumentality of Mankind, though they are not otherwise related.
  • In turn, the Hedgehog's Dilemma is an allusion to Schopenhauer. It's also been theorized among fans that the original ending alludes to and borrows from some of the existentialists, such as Sartre and Kierkegaard.
  • The Japanese title of the last episode, "The Beast That Shouted "I" at the Heart of the World," is a clear reference to Harlan Ellison's classic short story (and the anthology named for it) "The Beast that Shouted Love at the Heart of the World", especially given the "I"-"ai" ("love" in Japanese) pun.
  • Toji and Kensuke are allusions to characters from Ryu Murakami's Ai to Gensou no Fascism (The Fascism of Love and Fantasy), from which Anno borrowed much of the psychological material.
  • Keel Lorenz is an allusion to the ethologist Konrad Lorenz. He was originally named Konrad, too.
    • Konrad Lorenz developed the concept of imprinting in terms of mother/child relationships. For example, say you've got a duck's egg in an incubator, and it's ready to hatch. The eggshell cracks, and the chick's head pops out. It sees you, and thinks, "Mother!"
  • Interestingly, this series is the one most referenced by later Gainax works, and possibly anime in general. Yes, even Gurren Lagann, although it can be looked at as a Take That at NGE overall.
  • The manga seems to have shout outs to Star Wars, of all things. For example, on a NERV writeup of Toji, there's a documentation of his Midichlorian count. In a recent chapter, Gendo also pulls a Darth Vader on Shinji, which is reminiscent of the fact he loses a hand in The End.
    • Misato mutters "I have a bad feeling about this" in the episode with Jet Alone.
  • One of the Scenery Porn shots when Shinji first runs away alludes to a small sanctuary in My Neighbor Totoro.
  • Kaworu Nagisa's last name is a Shout Out to filmmaker Nagisa Oshima -- best known in the West for the infamous In the Realm of the Senses.
  • "Komm, Susser Tod", the title of one of the soundtrack's most infamous pieces, is a reference to another piece by Bach, although the song itself bears little resemblance.
  • Several of the English episode titles (chosen by Anno, not ADV Films) make reference to psychological concepts ("Oral Stage", "Ambivalence", "Introjection"), films ("The Day Tokyo-3 Stood Still"), literature ("Lilliputian Hitcher"), and music ("The Beginning and the End, or Knockin' on Heaven's Door").
  • The style of the opening is based on the classic sci-fi show UFO.
  • The Seele Monoliths are straight out of 2001: A Space Odyssey.
  • The title of the latter half of The End of Evangelion, "Magokoro wo, Kimi ni," comes from the Japanese title of the movie Charly, which was based on the short story/novel Flowers for Algernon.
  • Devilman and the Ultra Series get multiple shout outs throughout the series, some subtle, others overt.
  • A blink-and-you'll-miss-it one comes in form of one of Shinji's t-shirts, which has the logo of the British New Wave band XTC on the back. Seeing as quite a few of XTC's songs revolves around some of the same themes as Evangelion, the reference is likely more than just a superficially one.
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