GJ-bu@ is the recently aired TV special to the Winter 2013 anime TV series GJ-bu. It has a runtime of 46 minutes and chronicles the GJ-bu/GJ Club’s trip to New York. The original 12 episode series was very fun, humorous, and touching at parts. Does the new special live up to the original series? Let’s find out.
First, I must commend EveTaku for there speedy release of the special. It aired on May 6 (Tuesday), and they had their release up just two days later. (At the time of writing, however, Anime-Koi has also released the special).
Now, for the special itself.
It opens with a familiar scene: the GJ-bu sitting around their club room just like always. It’s quickly revealed that something isn’t exactly right though-
They’ve found themselves in New York. Naturally, our main character Kyolo was brought against his will and has no idea what’s going on. As it turns out, the GJ-bu is on a graduation trip for the three seniors in the group. What’s a better graduation trip destination than New York?
Following the quick prologue, the opening animation starts. It’s quite cleverly done in this- it’s the same song used in the TV anime, and the animation is essentially the same, except it all takes place in New York. (I would post a YouTube video of the new animation, but it hasn’t been posted there yet.)
Afterwards and until around the 10:30 mark, it’s just like another episode of GJ-bu. The characters are all at their best, and it’s quite refreshing to see them interact again after the final episode of the original series.
The second part is where it starts to have a more American flavor- or at least, the Japanese perception of America. As an American myself it’s very fun to see what America is like through the perspective of the characters. Not to mention everyone’s “American” outfits.
At this point it’s time for lunch, and what do they think to get? Hamburgers, of course, the one true American cuisine. Sadly the hamburgers aren’t actually authentic, but made by the Amatsuka household maid, Mori.
As the episode goes on, the wackiness of the club keeps making itself clearer and clearer. The Middle School sector of the GJ-bu also makes an appearance, of course.
And finally, the last thing the group does in New York is go trick-or-treating, complete with the glorious return of Kyoloko.
The trip to New York ends at around the 20:30 mark. I wondered to myself what the remainder of the special would consist of, and I was pleasantly surprised.
It’s better to experience this section of the special for yourself. It describes events that happen after the seniors have graduated and Kyolo has become the new president of the GJ-bu. I won’t spoil the rest, but this latter section caught me off guard.
I could hardly have asked more from this special. It’s a perfect final chapter to a truly beautiful series, and should satisfy anyone who had a lonely feeling after finishing the original TV anime, or really anybody who enjoyed the series.