|“||That was a joke.||”|
Episode 7 (NOT!) ("Bad at This" only)
|←Chapter 22 (NOT!)||Chapter 24 (NOT!) →|
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|In a series of tales about life for the residents of Death City, Anya Hepburn meets Soul Eater and his EAT tough guy classmates, Master struggles to tell jokes to Liz, and Kana Altair reveals the secret of her tarot cards.|
Soul Eater JOT is the twenty-third chapter of the manga Soul Eater NOT! It is comprised of a series of vignettes. In Volume 3 of the Yen Press English translation United States release, it is published as “Soul Eater JOT, Part 4.” The included story "Bad at This" was adapted as part of Episode 7, "Nice Day for a Death Bazaar," in the Soul Eater NOT! anime.
Walking through Death City, Anya Hepburn sees sitting on the street three boys talking a big game about getting into brawls at the DWMA: Kilik Rung, Black Star, and Soul Eater. Anya gulps in fear, remembering from her first encounter with Liz and Patty Thompson that a fight is not worth the trouble.
Upon making eye contact with Soul, however, Anya calms down. Soul approaches, recognizing her as a NOT student and asking whether she wants anything. Anya herself recognizes him as Maka Albarn’s partner and accuses Soul of being a fake: whereas Black Star and Kilik are actual “tough guys,” she can “sense [her]self in” Soul. Soul flinches at the accusation.
Bad at This
Master refuses to tell a joke, claiming that he cannot laugh after his entire family was murdered. Liz is shocked--until Master claims he was joking, which only shocks her more, criticizing his deadpan performance that makes it hard to identify when he is joking.
Master clarifies: his daughter was murdered. Liz looks sad. Master hesitantly admits he was joking--and Liz throws her wet towel at him.
Kana’s Original Cards
Kana Altair is busy making her own tarot cards when interrupted by Tsugumi Harudori. Tsugumi asks which card Kana is making. As the child stares at Tsugumi’s chest, Kana reveals that she was making a “Flat Chest” card to use right now against the embarrassed Tsugumi.
When persons born and raised in Death City encounter something that they are unsure about, they assume that thing is “dead.” As an example, Soul calls from the bathroom to ask Maka where his hair gel is. Maka replies from the living room that the gel must be dead.
Manga and Anime Differences
- "Bad at This" was adapted as part of Episode 7, "Nice Day for a Death Bazaar," in the Soul Eater NOT! anime. Whereas in the manga Patty was wiping her hands with a towel, in the anime, she was constructing a dragon sculpture made out of napkins, as she accomplishes in Chapter 24.
- None of the other stories were adapted into the anime, although this chapter does foreshadow details about the characters that would be apparent in both anime: Soul's posturing despite his famous lineage; Anya's royal heritage; Meme's sleepwalking that allows her to break into the Anti-Witch Headquarters; and that Kana fabricates some of her tarot cards.
- Yen Press split portions of Chapter 23 to print as separate entries in Volume 3 of the English United States, titled as “Soul Eater JOT.” “Soul Eater JOT, Part 4” features the following, in this order: the cover image of Meme sleep-reading in the Anti-Witch Headquarters, "Texas Holstein" (which appeared in Chapter 20), “Fake,” “Bad at This,” “Kana’s Original Cards,” and “Death Child.”
- The cover image foreshadows Meme’s break-in of the Anti-Witch Headquarters. This image may indicate that Meme had broken into this room more than once, before readers first saw her do so in Chapter 37.
- Among the beverages that Soul, Black Star, and Kilik are drinking is Daeth Pepper, which appeared in Chapter 1 of Soul Eater NOT!
- This chapter also foreshadows the reveal of Anya’s royal heritage. As Soul Eater NOT! is largely a sequel to the original manga, this chapter also references that Soul Evans, a piano player born into a famous family, postures as what Anya claims is a “fake” cool tough guy.
- This chapter supports Anya’s earlier criticism of Kana: the child really does make up her own tarot cards.
- This chapter shows more about Soul and Maka's private lives at the time of this story, and potentially during chapters of the original manga. Evidently Soul achieves his spiky hairstyle thanks to hair gel (assuming the hair gel has not "died"). His and Maka's bathroom includes a hand towel with cat paws on it (perhaps foreshadowing the arrival of Blair as their roommate), and their living room has a couch pillow with a piano key design.