Posted by psgels on 8 September 2009 with categories: GA Geijutsuka Art Design Class



GA really is the best 4Koma adaptation I have ever seen. And sure, the competition isn’t exactly dazzling, but it’s the first 4Koma adaptation that managed to really portray the short and snappy pacing of those sort of stories. It always brings something new to the table and never fails to catch my interest.

Anyway, this episode yet again seemed focused on torturing those with a limited understanding of Japanese like myself, because there was a lot of dialogue again. It starts with a rather morbid aspect of Japanese schools that I never knew about: donating blood. Yeah… apparently sixteen year-old school students all have to donate their blood at one point. My question to the Japanese among us: is that really true? O.o

Anyway, the teachers also seem to accompany them while the students of 15 years and below are asked to come up with designs for the blood donation truck’s mascot. Nozaki is the only one of 16 years, and so the rest comes up with all sorts of designs, ranging from cute to morbid. In the end, Awara’s design wins.

I also love how this series randomly introduces characters like they’ve been part of the setting all along. It just isn’t afraid to just pull out an extra person whenever he or she is needed, in order to make the setting come alive. And somehow these types of characters all feel real in their own way, instead of cliches or plot devices.

Anyway, the four remaining members of the art design club also play a strange little word game, in which they in turn name various things that have to do with blood donations, in order to get some inspiration for their designs and torture me, trying to understand it. The suggestions were: scene of the crime, blood transfusion, rose, pictures of the scene of the crime, and a whole bunch of words I just couldn’t make sense of. *kicks Japanese*

Next up is a short joke about how Usami keeps telling everyone not to smoke or drink coffee too much, after which she’s seen taking lunch supplements and a strange appearance of a teacher called Morita, who never really does anything. We then see Noda catching Nozaki’s happiness because she’s feeling down. After that we see another collection of drama pieces in which some of the characters are acting out very dramatic death scenes.

Yamaguchi ends up burning her hand when she uses water that’s too hot. Noda then spills a box of screws, and Oomichi cleans them up by her hairpin which turns out to be magnetic. Next up is lunch with Yamaguchi who took medicine and is fine again and Noda and Tomokane acting out yet another dramatic death scene. We the learn that Yamaguchi likes to leave the egg in her udon for last because it’s her favourite part. Seriously, at this part it feels like the show keeps changing subjects every ten seconds.

Next up Oomichi scares Yamaguchi with her magnetic misunderstanding, then we switch to Noda hiding in one of the boxes that were supposed to have been cleaned up. Noda then shows off some of her pencils that she made, one for each member of the Art Design Club. Nozaki’s somehow is twice as large. They then talk about how colours in dreams. I can’t relate to that because I hardly remember my dreams, but it’s indeed interesting if some dreams are indeed in monochrome.

Next up is a class about drawing in crayons in which Yamaguchi is in her element again drawing yet another sort of cute animal. We then go back to the box which has Oomichi and Yamaguchi in it. The episode ends with a small joke about catching happiness again, after which we see a small part of the girls buying new supplies and saying goodbye to each other. Oomichi, Noda and Nozaki need to catch their bus, while Yamaguchi gets overly enthusiastic about some of the supplies, making the rest miss their bus. Oomichi then invites them in a restaurant and the end credits roll.

Seriously, I’m still amazed at how much the creators manage to stuff into one single episode. It really feels like regular comedies can’t even get the same amount of stuff in double this amount of episodes. My favourite part of this episode was where Yamaguchi suddenly found that screw inside of Oomichi’s hair. Without knowing the context, it must have looked really weird from her perspective. ^^;

And really: what ever happened to the subbers for this series? I know that they were busy a few weeks ago, but it’s been ages since the last release and the subs still are stuck at episode 2. Even Mouryou no Hako got faster subs than this one. At times I really don’t get the moe-loving crowd. With the popularity of series as Hidamari Sketch, Lucky Star, Azumanga Daioh, Saki and K-On, this should have been at least moderately popular. When comparing series of slice of life with thrillers, then okay you could argue that it’s a matter of different tastes. But what does the cast of the aforementioned series have that the cast of GA doesn’t have? Fanservice? Moe fans, enlighten me!
Rating: ** (Excellent)

12 Responses

  1. Tlacuache says:

    Oh, I haven’t seen this anime, but sounds good. Is just the style of anime that I like. Thanks, I’ll look for this right now.

  2. Revenger1589 says:

    Subs are coming, Ayako is already encoding 3-7.

  3. totoum says:

    from the subbers yesterday

    “GA 3+4+5+6 are encoding as we speak, 7 is half done, 8 is being TLed. 9+10 will follow aswell, might aswell batch release 3-6 or single, check back today and/or tomorrow to find it thou.”

    Yeah,i think it’s the lack of fanservice and the fact that not everyone is that much into art,if you watched k-on for the music it’s likely you ended up disapointed by the lack of it,when i think k-on,i think of tea azunian wearing neko ears and a bunch of other stuff,but not music.

    My favorite 4 koma show remains “sketchbook full color’s”,completely different from this show though lol

  4. totoum says:

    Just reread this entry and I have a question,do saki and Hidamari Sket really belong in that list?
    AzuDaioh,LS and k-on are really popular take a look at the MAL popularity rankings: 40th for AzuDaioh , 15th for lucky star and 61th for k-on
    Saki and HS are really far behind,saki is ranked 489th and HS first season is ranked 608th while the second is ranked 1015th (not that far ahead of GA) so i’m not sure that they belong on the same list as the first 3,not to mention that saki,contrarly to all the others isn’t a 4 koma adaptation

  5. SaintAjora says:

    This series might be my favorite of the Summer 09 season. Where as K-ON! was my favorite of the Spring 09 season. I should also note that I’m very fond of Sketchbook, Hidamari Sketch, Azumanga Daioh, and Lucky Star.

    Actually, it’s kind of funny. Enjoying Hidamari Sketch caused me to try out Sketchbook. Enjoying both caused me to try out Geijutsuka. Funny how that works.

    Also, I’ve got to love when a joke I’ve read in the manga comes into play in the anime. Yay for dreaming in sepia with subtitles!

  6. clara\'s buddy says:

    donating blood>>you have to be 16 in order to donate blood, but it’s optional. The reason why Noda is whining is that if you do donate blood, you can skip class.

    The cute teacher was always too chicken to donate, so she decided to do it this time, only to find out her blood didn’t have enough nutrients (or something along those lines) which leads her to the supplement obsession.

  7. voor says:

    Going from the meager amount of subbed episodes that Ayako has actually managed to squeeze out so far, I’d say one major thing that works against the popularity of GA is its tendency to jump from funny situation to funny situation without any coherence. It’s as if the studio decided to animate the 4-koma literally and just throw up strip after strip with no plot to glue them all together into 1 episode. I’d love to be proven wrong about this though.

  8. psgels psgels says:

    voor: it’s actually a bit of a combination. There are long stories, in which the events flow really naturally, and at the same time there are also sketches that are taken from the 4koma format. It’s the combination between these two that’s interesting, because in this way it never drags or keeps milking its jokes, and you’ll never be able to know what to expect.

    But yeah, I can now understand that if you want a fully linear story that moves from A to B, you’ll have a hard time liking this series.

  9. voor says:

    psgels: For some reason I never got the same big feeling of disjointedness when I was watching Hidamari, Lucky Star or K-On.
    But I’ll certainly give GA another shot, provided Ayako can deliver. I had tried watching raws, but they were way over my head.

  10. Howling-kun says:

    “there was a lot of dialogue”

    I’ve heard subbers complaining about this many times on other occasions.

  11. ahbonk says:

    Long-time reader, first-time commenter. Osu!

    You seem to be blogging whatever anime I like, including this one :) I’m loving this series a whole lot, also Tokyo Magnitude and Cross Game this season. Also struggling with the dialogue and all ^^;; Other 4-koma anime are ok, just this one! Roar!

  12. ahbonk says:

    Anyhow keep up the good work! Will always be your long-time fan.

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  • Bam
    (Friday, Mar 6. 2015 12:03 AM)
    I agree that there are loose threads in Evangelion that were probably never fully developed by the committee, and a lot of symbolism (primarily Christian) that were only there for flare and edginess. But everything I say is backed up by the information available in the material or straight from the infodumps. If you see the Eva proposal to TXN (Tokyo TV) you can see that everything, and so much more actually, was planned from the beginning; albeit some stuff did change when Anno lost his mind.
  • Bam
    (Thursday, Mar 5. 2015 11:58 PM)
    The alpha strike was to infiltrate Central Dogma and take command and eliminate everyone inside. Seele is not really a sentimental type, if you hadn’t notice, so a ouple of hundred casualties before everyone turns to goop is pretty inconsequential.
  • Bam
    (Thursday, Mar 5. 2015 11:56 PM)
    @Aidan: Gendo is one of the few at NERV (if not the only one) who knows about the scrolls and the truth behind the Evas, and keep in mind Shinji is primarily piloting 01 just to get his acceptance; so he was certainly needed. Plus in the original series you need an intermediate vessel to connect thru an entry plug (Shinji and Asukas, moms) so not any kid will do. This is before the dummy plug and Toji mind you.
  • AidanAK47
    (Thursday, Mar 5. 2015 11:50 PM)
    There is being obtuse and indirect. And then there’s just being plain nonsensical. I don’t want to spell out everything but I hate to see people tie thin threads together and act like it was some great master-plan when it could just as well have been a guy just throwing any random shit together that he could think of. Ikuhara for one got away with that bullshit far too often.
  • AidanAK47
    (Thursday, Mar 5. 2015 11:45 PM)
    @Bam, And why was alpha strike necessary? If the goal is to destroy the evas and such then why not do as I suggested. Remove Gendo. Then it would be a piece of cake. And killing everyone just seems excessive and really unnecessary.
    Pretty sure anyone in Shinji’s class was suitable to be an evangelion pilot. And alright, shinji’s connection to the Eva is a reason to keep him in. But Gendo…not so much. He doesn’t influence it in any real way personally.
  • Bam
    (Thursday, Mar 5. 2015 11:28 PM)
    I actually really enjoy Evangelion for being obtuse and indirect. Not spelling everything out is part of the show’s charm and legacy. Now Eva has spawned numerous anime which do this wrong (looking at you Darker Than Black) but that isn’t really their fault. If you want something simple and basic go watch the endless supply of Nisio Isin’s stuff with neverending exposition and deafening verbosity.
  • Bam
    (Thursday, Mar 5. 2015 11:20 PM)
    I don’t think Kaworu needs much characterization. He’s the 1st and 13th angel who took human form since the DNA of one of Dr. Katsuragi’s team was fused with parts of Adam on the day of the 2nd impact. He’s basically the alien who finds sympathy for humans and ends up sacrificing himself for them. This is almost the same as in Rebuild and the manga, albeit he’s sexuality is much more clearer and is used more extensively for tension relief in the manga portrayal.
  • Bam
    (Thursday, Mar 5. 2015 10:49 PM)
    Keel Lorenz needed Gendo as his connection to Eva-01 (which is outfitted with Yui Ikari’s soul) and Shinji is crucial to the third impact. You want Shinji to reach maximum desperation in order to achieve synchronization. And if you pay attention you get why Seele couldn’t use their own pilots, as they needed the kids from the Gehrin project.
  • Bam
    (Thursday, Mar 5. 2015 10:46 PM)
    *their
  • Bam
    (Thursday, Mar 5. 2015 10:44 PM)
    What Seele does in EoE (or respectively ep25-26) is known as Alpha Strike. They take down the entirety of the apparatus that has the only chance to hinder the their plan, as they role is completed by that point.

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