Japanese Title: 使徒、襲来 (Shitou Shuurai) (Angel Attack)
English Sub-Title: Angel Attack
Airdate: October 4, 1995
The series begins with Captain Misato Katsuragi speeding through the streets of New Tokyo-3 in search of Shinji Ikari. Apparently, she was to pick him up, but is running 'fashionably' late. Meanwhile Shinji is wandering the deserted streets of the Tokai district (some 13km from New Tokyo-3), with a provocative photograph of the sexy NERV Captain. Just as he decides it was stupid for him to come, the ground shakes violently, and a giant creature begins stomping through the area.
Havoc ensues as the U.N. Forces begin their assault on the creature, with Shinji on the ground and in the thick of it. After some narrow escapes, Misato finally arrives to his rescue and the two evacuate the area.
Back at NERV Headquarters, the three U.N. Generals in charge of the operation are baffled that their weapons have no effect. Their last resort is immediately executed, resulting in the detonation of an Nē mine over the target. Their premature victory cheers are quickly silenced as the target, though damaged, remains intact and begins regenerating.
With the U.N. Forces all but defeated and their attacks proven embarrassingly ineffective, the U.N. Generals concede the operation to NERV Commander Gendo Ikari (Shinji Ikari's father). Citing with confidence that this is exactly why NERV was created, Gendo accepts the task.
Unlike the Generals before him, Gendo is fully aware that his target is of a race known as the Angels. This particular creature, Sachiel, is the Third Angel, one of seventeen such creatures foretold by the Dead Sea Scrolls to usher in the Third Impact. Although he has a weapon capable of challenging this, Gendo still needs a pilot.
In the meantime, Misato and Shinji arrive in New Tokyo-3, and begin their descent into the Geo Front. Misato takes the time to introduce Shinji to NERV, the secret U.N. organization where both she and his father work. Before they know it however, the two find themselves lost, wandering in circles through the maze-like complex. Coming to their rescue is Dr. Ritsuko Akagi, who after scolding Misato, leads them down into Central Dogma, and introduces Shinji to the synthetic life-form called Evangelion Unit-01.
Standing above the giant construct is Shinji's estranged father, Gendo Ikari. After being abandoned by his father nearly ten years ago, Shinji is shocked to learn that the only reason his father called for him was that he finally found a use for Shinji; to pilot Evangelion Unit-01 and defeat Sachiel.
After a heated exchange with his father, Shinji refuses to cooperate. Gendo in turn calls for the reset of Evangelion Unit-01 for Rei Ayanami, dismissing his son as unusable. Shinji is relieved, until he sees a young girl his age being wheeled in by nurses. He watches in disbelief as the girl, clearly injured and in pain, struggles to get off her stretcher.
As New Tokyo-3 and NERV Headquarters tremble amidst the continuing assaults of the Angel, debris suddenly comes crashing down on Shinji. To everyone's disbelief, the unpiloted and unpowered Evangelion Unit-01 suddenly breaks free of its restraints to protect him. Gendo smiles while his son rushes to Rei's aid. With his hands stained with her blood, Shinji reluctantly agrees to pilot Evangelion Unit-01.
Shinji synchronizes with the Evangelion Unit-01 without effort, though at this point he is unaware of what that actually means. Shortly after, he faces off with Sachiel on the streets of New Tokyo-3.
Shinji's luck runs out when he has trouble walking, and Evangelion Unit-01 ends up flat on its face. Sachiel grabs the giant construct by the head, raising it off the ground and breaking its left arm. With the pilot fully synchronized, Shinji is suddenly overcome by pain sustained to what he perceives is his own arm.
With Shinji in shock, Sachiel presses the attack, cracking the brain case of Evangelion Unit-01 and piercing its right eye. The episode ends with a terrified Misato Katsuragi as she watches Evangelion Unit-01 pinned against the side of a building, with blood gushing out of its head.