Posted by psgels on 22 September 2009 with categories: Anime Reviews, GA Geijutsuka Art Design Class



Let me start this review by saying that I’m usually not much of a fan of slice of life comedies. In my experience, they’re often boring, repetitive and stereotypical, and just look too much like each other. However, there are of course always exceptions. Hyakko last year for example was great example of a series that hit all the right notes for me, and here’s another one: GA Geijutsuka Art Design Class. This really is everything that a good slice of life comedy should be.

The way this series stands out is that it’s not only enjoyable, it’s also very informative. In every episodes the creators put these nice facts about rt, art techniques and equipment that also made it a very interesting series to watch. I raraly run into a series that actually teaches me something, but this series is one of those rare exceptions. Especially if you like art, there are enough details put into this series to keep you interested.

On top of that, this also is a really well written and directed series. Even though it follows the daily lives of a bunch of characters, it hardly ever repeats itself: every episode is distinctly different, and about a different topic, it hardly ever repeats jokes, and when it does it builds further upon them, rather than milking them out.

This really is a comedy for those who like fast-paced series. The creators really jump from one scene to the other, to keep the show fresh and from dragging. However, that does lead to a bit of a chaotic pacing, and you really need to pay attention in order to be able to follow it, so if you’d like your comedies to be more straightforward you’ll probably be turned off by this series.

Nevertheless, with a lovable cast, an excellent script and a very good portrayal of a bunch of high school girls, this really is one of my top picks in terms of this year’s comedies. It’s always consistently fresh, enjoyable and interesting, and even the parts that aren’t funny are still enjoyable or informative. It’s really a shame that it flew so much under the radar, because it’s definitely among my top 5 series of the past summer season.

Storytelling: 9/10
Characters: 9/10
Production-Values: 8/10
Setting: 9/10

9 Responses

  1. ahbonk says:

    Agreed with all your points. Love the show too! Truly the underdog of summer anime.

  2. d says:

    on the day that you watched this for the first time, you smacked it a low score along with two other shows. maybe now it’s time to reconsider the two other shows, cause honestly, I think you were just having a bad day.

  3. psgels psgels says:

    For Kanamemo, I indeed might have been a bit too harsh, but I actually kept watching Princess lover to episode 6, which turned out to be a really bad choice. The dialogue was just overly cheesy and hardly anything felt inspired.

  4. Wyrdwad says:

    Hey, have you ever watched School Rumble? When you said you’re not much of a fan of slice-of-life comedies, that was the first show that came to mind… because despite the generic title and generic-seeming characters, School Rumble is a FANTASTIC show. It’s funny, it’s charming, it’s well-written, the characters are really well fleshed-out and likable… it’s just overall a highly enjoyable slice-of-life comedy. It’s like Azumanga Daioh, but dare I say BETTER.

    If you ever get a chance to check it out, I highly recommend it. It’s a perfect example of how the genre SHOULD be done.

    As for GA… I think you’ve finally sold me on it. I’ll have to check it out this weekend. It sounds right up my alley. (:

    -Tom

  5. psgels psgels says:

    Wyrdwad: I’ve watched the first 13 episodes of School Rumble, and like you said it definitely had some hilarious parts, but eventually the endless stupidity of the lead character Tenma got the best of me, and I unfortunately dropped it.

  6. Wyrdwad says:

    Awww, that’s a shame. Despite her stupidity, I actually find Tenma extremely charming and likable. There’s a certain innocence to her that’s just really adorable. (:

    Of course, the real reason to watch is for Harima and his antics. Harima is one of the greatest anime characters ever. ;)

    But yeah, if you didn’t like it enough to continue after 13 episodes, I doubt your opinion would’ve changed much as you went farther in. It’s not exactly an ever-changing show, so once you get a feel for the kind of stuff that’s in it, you pretty much know what to expect from the rest of it.

    -Tom

  7. SaintAjora says:

    This is without a doubt my favorite series of Summer 09 and might even be my favorite series of 09 so far.

    I should however note the fact that is the type of show I tend to enjoy. Also it was my most anticipated series of Summer in terms of what I was waiting to try out. In part due to the first volume of the manga.

    In regards to School Rumble, I used to liked it. However I lost interest once I realized it was a case of format ruining potential, but that’s another story.

    I loved the cast in general, but for me the high favorite was Chikako. I was also quite fond of Miki and Miyabi as well.

  8. Solaris says:

    I am watching kanamemo, and i reconsidered something about it. Originally it seemed to me the same old story with moe chars with the same antics with nothing new at all. That first impression remained, but i noticed how the direction played with stereotypes and their antics to make the show enjoyable. So in the end it was, sure not a masterpice, but an entertaining serie.

  9. Azule says:

    Its the kind of show I used to enjoy, but I was sceptical of it at first. After watching it, I take it back. It’s fresh, got its own taste of uniqueness to every episode, and never feels like it’s been overdone. The art style seeps quality, and the music goes with the style perfectly.

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  • Kaiser Eoghan
    (Saturday, Feb 6. 2016 08:38 AM)
    Jesus I never expected that doing a myanimelist/letterboxd account thing would be so hard. I’ve seen a scarily higher amount than I thought, its insanely hard to remember everything to add.
  • Bam
    (Saturday, Feb 6. 2016 06:17 AM)
    It seems then that the future of the franchise’s anime adaptations rests a bit on Schwarzesmarken’s success, which looking at the buzz doesn’t seem favourable at all. I doubt it can regain the lost audiences.
  • Bam
    (Saturday, Feb 6. 2016 06:14 AM)
    That would suggest that the author(s) had the foresight of including seemingly useless stuff that will come into play later. That’d be impressive if they did, as these kinda series are make-it-as-you-go.
  • AidanAK47
    (Saturday, Feb 6. 2016 01:59 AM)
    It’s difficult to put into words but essentially while the first game isn’t good, it does work as a tool for introducing and endearing you to the characters. Then Unlimited sets down the rules of the new world. And finally alternative proceeds to kick your ass into next Tuesday.
    That’s sort of why I don’t think it would have the same effect if it was an anime. VNs allow you to get a more personal connection with the characters.
  • AidanAK47
    (Saturday, Feb 6. 2016 01:55 AM)
    It’s not quite the same. It’s more like there are things in extra which seem insignificant but turn out to play an important role later. It wouldn’t really work the same if you did it in reverse order. Character history is a bit different too as each game is essentially an alternate universe. The character histories in extra are different from those in alternative.
  • Bam
    (Friday, Feb 5. 2016 11:38 PM)
    And also remember how Darker Than Black had a big jump between the main series and Gemini of the Meteor. They later made a 4 episode OVA that covered the gap, and although you knew the outcome it was still entertaining; or at least more than the Gemini one. There’s merit to non-linear chronology and storytelling, but it is usually very hard to pull. The audience is intrigued by secrets that can later be uncovered, although in anime the pay-off is not always substantial.
  • Bam
    (Friday, Feb 5. 2016 11:32 PM)
    I don’t know, the audience usually only needs very limited information to figure out dynamics and histories between the characters.
  • AidanAK47
    (Friday, Feb 5. 2016 11:27 PM)
    A 13 episode series would work for the second title unlimited. But Alternative is a pretty long visual novel. You need at least two cours to give it justice. Making extra an OVA could work but you do need it for alternative. But it’s not an optional part of the trilogy. It needs to be read first, so that events later have a greater impact. Personally I am not even sure Muv Luv can even work in another medium.
  • Bam
    (Friday, Feb 5. 2016 11:12 PM)
    That might compress things, but I think a good screen-writer can fit pretty much any VN in 12-14 episodes (covering just the main route).
  • Bam
    (Friday, Feb 5. 2016 11:07 PM)
    @Aidan: then the best solution would’ve been to make a two cour season covering the 2nd and the 3rd book. Have the cours air two anime seasons apart, and in the middle have an offshoot short OVA that covers the 1st book, but has a more harem comedy feel to it. Think Full Metal Panic and Fumuffu.

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