Following the events of The Second Try, the Ikari family is back together. However, this is not the world little Aki Ikari grew up in, this is not the world Asuka and Shinji Ikari have been living in for the past seven years, and there is still quite a bit of work that needs to be done — for one thing, Mr. and Mrs. Ikari need to get remarried. So join Aki and her parents as they go through life, face the challenges of the world, and look darn cute doing it.
In other words, Aki-chan's Life is a primarily Slice of Life Fan Webcomic that acts as the sequel to the Neon Genesis Evangelion fanfic The Second Try by Jimmy Wolk (author of The Ikaris and Long Time No See). The story is told in chapters, with each chapter being its own self-contain mini-arc, and the strips themselves are read right-to-left instead of the standard left-to-right. All similarities to Manga or Doujinshi are completely intentional.
The comic can be read here.
This comic contains examples of the following tropes:
- Affectionate Gesture to the Head: Aki has this a lot of her loving parents as seen here.
- Animesque: In terms of art style and format, the comic is just like a Doujinshi. In every other respect, though, it's clearly a Western webcomic.
- Arbitrary Skepticism: Averted with Toji, who decides that he's seen so much lately that Shinji and Asuka having a time-traveling daughter isn't that odd, and Fuyutsuki, who accepted it after spending a little time with Aki and saw many similarities with her parents. Played straight with Ritsuko, who demands a paternity test.
- Arson, Murder, and Jaywalking: Hikari is peeved to learn that Shinji and Asuka have a time-traveling daughter, are sleeping together before getting married, and got engaged before she and Toji could.
- Badass Adorable: Not many toddlers can climb a fully-grown tree. Aki was like a prepubescent Tarzan in that regard, when she climbs up a tree at kindergarten in order to retrieve a ball for a fellow classmate.
- Big Brother Instinct: Rei had a bad experience with school, and she correctly anticipates that Aki's...unique tendencies will cause her to have a similar experience. In order to protect her from that, Rei is willing to argue with her parents repeatedly about it. And when they still put Aki in school, Rei waits just outside the school building for most of the day, just in case.
- Birthday Episode: In the first chapter, Shinji and Asuka held a party for Aki's fourth birthday. They invited their friends and co-workers, telling them that they were celebrating their victory about SEELE. So when they introduced their four-years-old daughter—that no one knew they had—hilarity ensued.
- Butt-Monkey: Poor Pen-Pen lost all dignity when Aki entered the picture.Asuka: "They had a rough start".
Aki: "Fly, Birdy!"
- Call to Agriculture: After winning the Angel War and averting the Apocalypse, Shinji and Asuka decide to buy the elderly Yamaderas' garden-market (where they lived back in the... alternate future) and run the place.
- Character Tics: As seen in chapter 3, Aki has inherited her father's nervous tic: she clenches and relaxes her right hand when she gets nervous.
- Cloud Cuckoolander: Aki's a little odd, even for a 4 year old, but that's to be expected given the world she used to live in.
- Cool Aunt: Rei, of all people, is this to Aki.
- Cool Old Guy: Fuyutsuki.
- Cover Innocent Eyes and Ears: So that Aki does not find out about their time-traveling, Asuka covers her time-displaced daughter's ears while Shinji tells Asuka's parents the whole story.
- Cuteness Overload: Just look at the page picture. Aki-chan is freaking adorable.
- Cute Kitten: "Mr. Fluffles", a neighborhood cat Aki enjoys playing with. The author has hinted in a comment on a piece of fanart that the Ikaris may get a pet cat of their own one day.
- Death Glare: Ritsuko finds herself recieving one simultaneously from both Asuka AND Shinji when she jokingly(?) suggests taking a blood sample from Aki for the DNA test.
- Didn't See That Coming: Sums up about half of the reactions on this page after Shinji and Asuka introduce Aki to the rest of the cast.note
- Doting Grandparent: After getting used to the idea of suddenly having a four-years-old granddaughter, Asuka's stepmother Anja considers her grandmotherly duty to spoil Aki.Asuka: "Aki...I said: One [cookie]!"
Anja: "Oh, it's all right... After all.. Isn't it a prerogative of a gradparent to spoil their grandchild?"
- Drives Like Crazy: In chapter 2, Misato is driving the Ikari family to NERV. When Shinji mentions that she is an awful, reckless driver, Misato protests that she is trying to stick to traffic regulations.
- Face Palm: Asuka facepalms repeatedly here and here while Kaji is putting his foot in his mouth in spectacular fashion.
- Faint in Shock: Asuka's parents faint when her fourteen-year-old daughter drops in unexpectedly, after spending half year abroad, to introduce her husband and four-year-old daughter.
- Family Relationship Switcheroo: Shinji and Asuka attempt this, though it doesn't work when Aki immediately exclaims that she is "Mama's Cousin".
- Fish out of Temporal Water:
- Technically a case of someone from the future coming to the past, though Aki is too young to really understand the situation. She's still learning about the world, meeting new people and such, and in many ways her situation isn't that much different from a typical 4 year old. She does, however, tend to draw worried looks when she talks about the post-Third-Impact world where she used to live.
- When dropping her off for her first day at Kindergarten, her parents explain that they "used to live out in a secluded part of the countryside" to excuse Aki's more oddball moments; a pretty good comparison if you think about it.
- Friendly Rivalry: Naota and Seita, who are, in their own words, "Bestest Rivals!"
- Funetik Aksent: On Germany, Asuka explains to Aki that some Germans have a very strong, barely intelligible accent. When Aki compares them with her father, Shinji tries and fails to prove his German is getting better.Asuka: And in some parts, the people speak so funny that you can barely understand them, even if you know German!
Aki: Like Papa?
Shinji: Hey! "Mein Deutsch bekommt sehr gut!"
Asuka and Aki snicker as Shinji fumes
Jimmy Wolk: He's trying to say that his "German is (getting) pretty good", but that should have been "Mein Deutsch ist sehr gut" or "...wird immer besser").
- Funny Answering Machine: Courtesy of Aki.
- Funny Background Event: Shinji is talking on the phone while Aki's birthday party is going on in the background. Pen-Pen walks past the table, then realizes that a bunch of kids about Aki's age are present. Naturally, he squawks and runs away.
- Later, Shinji and Asuka visit the Yamaderas and discuss potentially buying the house they're selling. And what's Aki doing? Playing with the cat in the backyard.
- Good Parents: Shinji and Asuka, heartwarmingly so.
- Henpecked Husband:
- Shinji is quite passive and Asuka very domineering. Most of the time, Asuka makes plans and handles everything necessary, while Shinji follows her lead or makes whatever she commands. At one point after returning to the past, Touji thinks his best friend looks like a henpecked husband, not knowing how right he is.Touji: Man, how can a guy be that henpecked?
- As seen during a flashback, Gendo's reply to anything what his wife said was: "Yes, Yui", "Of course, Yui", "Whatever you say, Yui".
- Shinji is quite passive and Asuka very domineering. Most of the time, Asuka makes plans and handles everything necessary, while Shinji follows her lead or makes whatever she commands. At one point after returning to the past, Touji thinks his best friend looks like a henpecked husband, not knowing how right he is.
- Imaginary Friend: Subverted. Word of God says that the reason Aki isn't carrying around Kiko (her doll) all that much any more is because she is meeting lots of people besides her mom and dad.
- Insult of Endearment: To Asuka, Shinji is "her beloved idiot".
- Intergenerational Friendship: Aki and Rei.
- Is That Cute Kid Yours?: Constantly inverted due to time travel shenanigans; no one automatically assumes that 15 year old Asuka would be the parent of a kindergartner, instead pegging her as an older sibling or some other relation. During a playdate one of the other mothers walks right by Asuka to speak to Misato instead.I'd like to speak to that Aki kid's mother first! I do hope she or any other adult is present and not just some babysitter.
- Karma Houdini: Maybe they managed to successfully blame everything on Gendo, or maybe it's just because this is a comedic slice-of-life work; but it's a little odd that NERV hasn't been disbanded after the events of The Second Try. Fuyutsuki is now allowed to be in charge of NERV rather than being in prison somewhere, and Ritsuko also doesn't appear to have been punished in any way for her involvement with Gendo's plans.
- Kid from the Future: Aki technically counts, although both parents were aware of her existence before she went back in time.
- Late-Arrival Spoiler: Asuka and Shinji having a daughter was a big reveal in The Second Try. Here, it's spelled out in the prologue.
- Lemony Narrator: Caption boxes will often exposit on the characters' expressions, and in parts of chapter 1 they just flat out gave the author's commentary on the proceedings.
- Luminescent Blush: Asuka tasks Shinji with explaining to Aki where babies come from in this page. Shinji's face turns red as the thought of teaching Aki that.
- Magic Feather: It's Aki's first day of kindergarten, and she's upset about being forced to wear an uniform. So Touji gives her his old school hat, which's "empowered by the spirit of freedom", and whose "magic" will make her feel comfortable no matter what. It helps Aki get through her first day until she realizes she doesn't really need it.
- Mama Bear: Asuka does not take it well when she learns that Aki has wandered off deeper into NERV HQ.
- Meet the In-Laws: Chapter 5 sees the family traveling to Germany to meet Asuka's family; complicated by the fact that Asuka's been estranged from her father for years... and Aki, of course.
- Moe Couplet: Aki and Rei. Seriously, it's adorable.
- My Future Self and Me: After finding out that Shinji and Asuka are having a second child in the Aki2 oneshot, Misato jokes about the possibility of Asuka giving birth to Aki a second time (leading to her being her own older sister). Both Asuka and Shiji shoot down it down, saying that they had already long past the point in time for that to be a possibility.
- Mystical Pregnancy: Played for Laughs. When performing a DNA test on Aki to see if Asuka and Shinji's claims about her being their Kid from the Future is true, Ritsuko jokingly states that they're be checking to see if Asuka managed to become a virgin mother (Aki was actually conceived the old fashioned way, if by accident). Of course, Asuka and Shinji had already had sex the night before the final battle, which leads to the following exchange:Asuka: (angrily) You idiot! Look at what chance you took from me and Aki!
Shinji: Hey, you were the one who started... besides, such implications would have only meant unnecessary trouble anyway...
- Mythology Gag:
- When Maya offers to get Aki some tea at a vending machine, she responds with "But I'm a girl...!"
- Also, when Aki first sees the Geofront, she says, "Wow! A real-" "-ly big cave!", an innocent jab at her father's initial comment about the Geofront.
- Later, when Aki falls out of a tree, she lands gracefully on her feet, in a manner extremely similar to Rei falling out of the vent in NERV.
- When Asuka successfully teaches Aki about where babies come from, Shinji, Misato, and Kaji all applaud around her in a way that brings to mind the series' original Episode 26 and its Gainax Ending scene.
- Named by the Adaptation: Asuka's stepmother, who has no canon name, is called Anja.
- Newhart Phonecall: In the fourth chapter, Shinji and Kensuke are talking on the phone. It is unknown what Kensuke is asking Shinji, but his request is giving him a headache.Shinji: Hello? Ah, Kensuke? If I have what? So what was... You want what?! No! How do you even know about that? No, wait, I don't want to know...
- No Sense of Direction: When Ritsuko asks if Misato knows where her lab is, the latter angrily replies she hasn't gotten lost in months... and then she proceeds to get lost anyway because she did not know Ritsuko has relocated her headquarters.
- "Not So Different" Remark: Aki meets a girl called Ririko who is prone to get angry and hold grudges. Later Asuka meets Ririko's overbearing and strict mother, and gets pretty irritated at the woman's attitude. Then Ririko tells her schoolmates that her mother is like that because if they are not the best nobody will respect them... In other words, they have the same mindset Asuka had been fed with since she was a little child. Upon hearing it, Asuka got frozen in the spot.
- Not What It Looks Like: Subverted. Yes, Touji and Hikari: that little girl who just answered the door of your friend's apartment is their kid. It's a long story. Asuka also makes a perfunctory attempt to deny to Hikari that she's sharing a room/bed with Shinji, but gives up after Hikari points out the engagement ring.
- Oh, Crap!:
- The older Ikaris finding out that Hikari's older siter Kodoma works at the kindergarten where they're enrolling Aki.
- Shinji when Asuka leaves him the duty of explaining "The birds and the bees" to Aki.
- O.O.C. Is Serious Business: When Touji and Hikari see Rei smiling, they freak out and decide they MUST have landed on an alternate universe somehow (and they are not so far from the truth, if you think about it).
- Peggy Sue: While the comic itself doesn't directly have this, the effects of The Second Try being an example are discussed though. For one thing, Ritsuko doesn't believe that Aki is Shinji and Asuka's daughter till she does a DNA test.
- Prefers Going Barefoot: Aki. This was also true in The Second Try, but it gets a lot more focus here, especially in Chapter 3, where she has to go to kindergarten. By chapter 4, though, she seems to have gotten over it, or at least started to just put up with it.
- Recursive Fanfiction: The comic has inspired a number of fan works of its own, including both fan art and fan fiction.
- Relatively Flimsy Excuse: Shinji and Asuka don't want to explain that Aki is their Kid from the Future, so they claim she's Asuka's four-year-old cousin... which prompts Aki to happily exclaim: "Yes, I'm Mama's cousin! Hey, what's a cousin?"
- The Reveal: The whole point of the Party in chapter 1. With SEELE and the Angels gone, Shinji and Asuka had no reason keep the whole Time-Travel thing, or their daughter, a secret anymore.
- Right in Front of Me: Kodoma suspects she knows Asuka when she goes to drop Aki off, but seems to believe she's mistaken.Kodoma: I guess it's the hair. The only other redhead I know is that obnoxious friend of my little sister.
- Rummage Sale Reject: Downplayed. Aki likes to wear clothes that are too big for her. She doesn't like more appropriately-fitting clothes like her kindergarten outfit, or shoes and socks.
- Scary Shiny Glasses: While Shinji and Asuka wear glasses, only Asuka's tend to be Scary Shiny Glasses. Who would have thought Asuka would take fashion tips from Gendo?
- Spin-Offspring: Aki.
- Spit Take: Kodoma does one when she learns that Aki has run off.
- Strong Family Resemblance: Aki looks very similar to her grandmother Yui (and by association Rei), but also has some features of her mother Asuka. Shinji and Asuka's second daughter in Sisters looks more like Shinji.
- Stylistic Suck: Aki's drawings are intentionally made poorer than Jimmy's art, since she is a toddler.
- Supernaturally Young Parent: As noted below under Teen Pregnancy, the age gap between Parents and child barely is Ten years. The family doesn't really care much; to Aki, they're still "Moma" and "Papa" (and she's too young to understand anyways); Shinji and Asuka are just glad to have her back, and remain loving, mature parents. But it's an awkward situation to say the least, and Mom and Dad generally try to avoid explaining it to folks outside their friends and people at NERV.
- The Talk:
- Teen Pregnancy: They're not sure exactly because they didn't bother keeping track of dates, but Shinji and Asuka couldn't have been much over 16 when Aki was conceived. And that's before the Mental Time Travel thing happened, leaving them both physically fourteen... with a four year-old Kid from the Future. This is going to create some problems in the future...
- Title Drop: The only instance where Japanese Honorifics are used are three instances where people are addressing "Aki-chan."
- Undead Tax Exemption: Misato managed to get Aki a passport despite her lacking any real legal identity. Shinji and Asuka have no idea how she did so, but they both know that she's going to lord it over them for a long time.
- Unfazed Everyman: Touji figures out who Aki is within minutes of meeting her. More to the point, he has very little trouble believing it:Touji: I guess I shouldn't have been so surprised... I've seen so many weird things the last few months... So... congratulations.
- Wig, Dress, Accent: Shinji and Asuka dress up in business outfits to hide their age when dropping Aki off at Kindergarten; You know, because two teens dropping off a 4-year old at school would raise a lot of awkward questions.
- Wingding Eyes: In this scene Shinji and Misato are blinded by a camera's flash and their eyes turn into tiny spirals.
- You Must Be This Tall to Ride: During a visit to the Fair, Aki wants to get in one ride, but Shinji says she's too short. Misato also wants to get in the same ride, but Kaji argues she's too pregnant. At the end, the toddler and the -physically- older woman have to settle for riding the merry-go-round... both sporting fuming-expressions.