Really. Then why weren't people saying so when the show was still airing? I was there at the begining of the show, I followed the threads from the first episode. The majority of /a/ thought GL was going to be the origin of the person in the prologue. Some thought it was going be an old fashioned super robot show, with tweaks and updates to make it fresh. I don't recall a single person going, "hey guys, this is a show about progress."
After the show was over, and Gainax started giving interviews about it, then people stated that as the theme, and then you had people like Ghost Nia coming out of the wood work making bad essays about the theme. If you re-watched the show, or I imagine if you started watching GL after reading the Gainax interviews, and reading on /a/, you could see the theme at work, since you knew what you were looking for.
But at the time we didn't know what we were looking for.
And now I too feel like I am stuck in English class.