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In works about or in a school, whether due to laziness or otherwise, Class X-A or Class X-1 (X being the year) will usually meet one or more of the following criteria:
- Most/all of the main characters or other important characters will conveniently be in that same class.
- That class will be the weirdest and liveliest one/will stand out the most within the school.
- Said class will be a Weirdness Magnet or a Fantasy Kitchen Sink.
This is a direct result of The Law of Conservation of Detail.
In Japan, classes remain constant, with all classes except for PE taking place in one room, and the teachers being the ones cycling around instead of the students. The students in the class also tend to not get split from year to year very often, sometimes even using the same room and just changing the nameplate. As such, this finds its way into Japanese Media quite often, since the writers can't find any reason in themselves to care about which class the students are in, since there's no real difference and they'll all move up together in the same class anyway. Rather than actually work on choosing a number for the class, they decided to stick with an A or 1. Very rarely is there any deep meaning behind why it had to be A/1.
From a writing stance, this is convenient for keeping the main cast together without having to Hand Wave anything, since the target audience is used to that system and would readily accept it. What is not readily accepted is that the class number/letter tends to always be A or 1, and therefore this trope comes into being.
When this is invoked, class rivalries tend to be with class B or 2, which is invoking this trope twice in the same work. Too lazy to pick a class number or letter again? Go with the second option, you were already too lazy to pick one the first time, may as well stay consistent.
In fact, a common aversion is to place the main character in the aforementioned second class, simply to try and not look like this trope.
Anime and Manga Edit
- Mahou Sensei Negima and its spinoffs has most of the main cast in Class 2-A at the start of the series, with the main character as the teacher. The class quickly moves on to the next year... where they're Class 3-A. The class also happens to have people ranging from princesses to a robot to a vampire to a Chinese Martian entrepreneur mad scientist martial artist mage and future descendant of the main character.
- Rosario to Vampire has the entire main cast placed into Class 2-1 at the beginning of season 2 in both the anime and manga. Subverted in the first year, where only Yukari attended 1-1 (the rest of the cast attended the immediately adjacent 1-2).
- Also lampshaded by Mizore when she wonders if it was the headmaster that made sure that everyone was placed in the same class.
- The World God Only Knows has at least three of the more important capture targets in class A of their respective grades. However, the two main characters are in Class B.
- Baka and Test Summon The Beasts inverts this with all the main characters being in Class F and Class A being the antagonists (they are arranged by their test scores). The other four classes in between are almost entirely inconsequential and only their Class Representatives get any screentime.
- To Love Ru also uses this for most of the main cast that actually goes to school. They're in Class A in the first year that was shown, then it gets messed with somewhat in the second year. Ren then asks why he's the only one who was moved to a different class.
- The sequel, To Love Ru Darkness, further reveals that the class that Momo, Nana, Yami and Mea are in is also A, but for the year before the main cast of the original. Mikan is later shown to be in 6-A in middle school.
- Mami of Puella Magi Madoka Magica is shown to be in class 3-A in the manga adaptation, as well as in the Spin-Off manga Puella Magi Oriko Magica.
- Beelzebub puts all of the main characters from Ishiyama, as well as everyone else from Ishiyama into class 3F when they transfer into St. Ishiyama, regardless of grade. This is, of course, lampshaded.
- Princess Lucia puts two of the main characters in 1-A.
- Both of the main protagonists of Bakuman｡ were in class 1-1 in high school.
- Iris Zero averts this by placing the main characters into two different classes, neither being class 1.
- Rio of Ratman is in class 2-A, but she is merely the tritagonist. The other 2 more important main characters are in 1-C.
- All of the main cast who are students in Seto no Hanayome are in Class 2-1.
- Class A in Prunus Girl seems to be composed of a bunch of nuts for whom Maki gets to play Straight Man, not that the rest of the school is much better.
- Averted by Sousuke Sagara of Full Metal Panic, as he loudly announces his allegiance to Class 2-4 as Student No. 41 during his heartwarming attempt at a Badass Boast during the anime's last episode.
- Sen Yarizui of Ben-To is in class 2-1. Of course, this was revealed at complete random with no meaning in the slightest.
- Ichika and Lemon in Waiting in The Summer are in class 3-A.
- Eita and Masuzu of Ore No Kanojo To Osananajimi Ga Shuraba Sugiru are shown to be in class 1-1. Chiwa isn't in the class, however.
- Yoshitaka and Izumi of He Is My Master are placed in class 2-A. Their sharing a class is convenient for Yoshitaka, since it allows for him to give Izumi orders from just the next desk over. Anna is also in that class.
- The main cast members of Mysterious Girlfriend X are all in 2-A.
- Averted in Future Diary. Yukiteru and Yuno are both in class 2-B initially, and they end up in 2-C and 2-D respectively and their new school. While that can still be considered somewhat lazy, it looks like this was a deliberate aversion.
- Zenkichi of Medaka Box, being the POV Boy, is in class 1. Shiranui is also in that class until she switches to class -13 later on. The Poster Girl Medaka, however is in class 13, the class set aside for abnormals.
- The main character of Lovers Alpha is in class 3-A.
- This is averted by Oniichan no Koto Nanka Zenzen Suki Janain Dakara ne!!, which places Nao and Iroha in class 1-B.
- Kodomo No Jikan, the class Aoki teachers at the start (the number goes up as he teaches them for multiple grades) is Class 3-1. Seeing as Rin, Kuro and Mimi are (of course) in this class, it automatically falls under containing most of the main characters and is most certainly the most abnormal.
- A later chapter shows how when the girls are going up a grade, Aoki keeps intentionally arranging himself to be their homeroom teacher. He even tried putting Kuro in a separate class, but decided otherwise in the end.
Video Games Edit
- Mega Man Star Force has the main character in Class 5-A. Naturally, three other main characters are in there too. The only human main character who isn't in that class conveniently doesn't go to that school in the first place.
- Likewise, Mega Man Battle Network has Lan, Mayl, Dex and Yai in Class 5-1 until Battle Network 6 has Lan move away. His class in his new school? 6-1. Both of the new main characters in that game happen to be in that class too.
- Averted in Valkyria Chronicles II: the protagonists are members of Squad G, which is the class where slackers, misfits and undesirables get dumped. Overcoming the problems, lack of teamwork, and defeatism that landed them in said class is a major part of the first two thirds of the game.