Following the opening of Evangelion Store Tokyo-01, and with the release of the third installment of the reboot series, Evangelion 3.0: You Can (Not) Redo, a new Evangelion souvenir shop is scheduled to open in the town of Hakone on 14 July.
Hakone, which serves as the backdrop for the Evangelion story (where it’s renamed as Tokyo-3), is happy to be home to the second official Evangelion store, called “Eva Shop” but is also hoping they don’t get a repeat of what happened two years ago.
During the build-up to Evangelion 2.0: You Can (Not) Advance, Lawson’s convenience stores released an iPhone app where using its camera in Hakone at the right moment and angle would reveal an 80 meter tall Evangelion unit. Lawson’s also redecorated one of their branches that was featured in the movie to sell exclusive merchandise. Hakone’s Sengokuhara Junior High School (the basis for the First Municipal Middle School) got in on the action and held advance screenings of the second film.
The campaign worked, but all too well. Fans came from far and wide to buy Evangelion merchandise, get a snapshot of EVA-01, and check out the screening. So many came that the small town was overrun causing headaches for the townsfolk. People were parking their cars everywhere, including residents’ properties.
Despite efforts by Evangelion producers to civilize the horde of visitors, the problems continued to grow. Ultimately the event was shut down.
Eva Shop, however, looks to be a more reasonably scaled tribute to the home of the Evangelion series. The modestly sized store is filled with some traditional Japanese souvenirs like cakes (imagawayaki), key chains, and tea bowls all emblazoned with the NERV emblem. Also available are the goods found in Evangelion Store Tokyo-01 opened last year.
Eva Shop’s classy items like Evangelion themed natsuke (a traditional ball used to hold things on your belt) are sure to bring out the fans. But since it’s a permanent store we all don’t have to go at the same time.
Source: evastore.jp (Japanese)