K-ON Anime, Season 2, Disk 1 (English)

August 15th, 2012

Season 2 of the K-ON! anime is, well, pretty much exactly the same kind of thing as Season 1 was, so if Season 1 didn’t appeal to you, then probably this season isn’t going to either. ^_^

Season 2 has exactly the kind of thing *I* liked about Season 1, so for me, this is total win.

The two things I liked best on this disk have nothing whatsoever to do with Yuri or music. For me, what makes K-On! work is the interplay between the four leads. More than any other series, this one strikes me as one written by someone who actually knew something about real girls. (As say, compared with Yuru Yuri, which reads like a guess as to sort-of what girls are, maybe, like, when they hang out.)

There are two scenes that strongly affected me in this way. The first, when the four are sharing a room for their school trip and making each other giggle by saying stupid things. Yep, we did that. Heck we *still* do that. My Mom once yelled at me when staying over my house for the holidays that my wife and I needed to stop giggling, it was keeping her up.)

The second is a scene so meaningless, so…normal…that it took my breath away. When they are all shopping at the home goods store and Yui comes running over to exclaim “Screws!” then dances in hyperactive delight at all the shapes and sizes of screw…yep, we do that too. ^_^

The palpable lack of Yuri is a plus, as well. When Yui hangs on Mugi there is no fanservice, overt or implied. This is how it should be. This is in fact, how it is.

K-ON! s that most rare of creatures – a moe 4-koma gag story about girls hanging out that gets it exactly right.

Ratings:

Art – 5
Story – 8
Characters – 9
Yuri – 1
Service – 4

Overall – 8

Once again it is my great pleasure to thank Okazu Superhero Eric P. for his sponsorship of today’s review!

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9 Responses

  1. Eric P. says:

    Within the first minute of the first episode, Yui starts off everything by jamming on her guitar. Could there have been a more perfect way of starting the next season of ‘K-On’?

    For me one of the scenes that stood out was the moment where Mio turns around to look at the slide show presented to the Mio fan club. For a series that’s classified by some as pure fluff, this was one of a handful of nicely poignant moments done effectively. Aside from it being a cute and funny series to start with, it’s those little things that remind me why I came to really like this show in a way that surprised even me.

  2. solarsun says:

    There is something about K-on that hits me like Azu Manga Daioh and usually when I describe it to people interested in anime I describe it like azu manga daioh (if they’ve seen the first one of course) with more music based. I marathoned the second season when I got my preorder of the second half of the second season in (yeah the naming schemes do suck).

    The characters maybe anime but honestly we’ve all been where they have going to school much like you pointed out.

    Giggling at night during sleep overs, yeah I’ve done that.

    Being all wonky and weird at shopping centers, yeah my sister and I made it a point to do that to embarrass our father growing up.

    Though one of the biggest scenes though for me was and still is the last episode. In high school my best friends were a grade ahead of me. I knew exactly what Azusa was feeling those moments watching them leave you behind and realizing there is nothing you can do about it. I’m a bubbling mess of emotions during that scene every time it’s played.

  3. Motormind says:

    I have mixed feelings about the lack of Yuri. Yes, this series shows the behavior of girls in a bit more natural light, but on the other hand it ditches some of the concepts from the original manga and that I thought worked well.

    For one, the subtext between Azusa and Yui is totally thrown overboard. In the manga it gets rather evident that Azusa develops some feelings for Yui, especially in the end. Yes, it’s rather subdued, but the moment when Azusa begs Yui no to leave her is comes pretty close to a confession. In the anime, Azusa addresses the whole group, and she is usually only exasperated by Yui’s antics.

    (It’s stil not as bad as the Movie though, where Azusa is abhorred by the idea that Yui might like her, which to me boils down to character derailment).

    I guess it’s not in this volume yet, but the episode in which Ritsu and Mugi hit the town just screams “date” to me. But whatever happened to Mugi’s “Yuri glasses”? Did she have them surgically removed?

    Don’t get me wrong: I love this series, and when I was in Japan I visit several of the locations depicted in the anime (including the school in Toyosato, which was used as a model for the school in the anime). I just think that the maker of the anime could have left some of the original manga’s Yuri subtext in there.

  4. Anonymous says:

    When you put it that way, it seems as if you’re implying that namori is male.

  5. @Anonymous – namori is male.

  6. Anonymous says:

    @Erica
    I had been under the impression that namori was female, but your assertion prompted me to dig a little deeper. I cannot find anything definitive in the Hime Cafe that wikipedia cites, and do not put much faith in the tweet by Kishida Mel that appears to be the only other “proof” people drag out (ignoring references to now-deleted websites that belonged to namori in his/her/its high school days, since I cannot see them for myself).

    So technically I believe that fact is left to the readers’ imaginations — the only official stance being that namori is a jellyfish.

  7. @Anonymous – I don’t know what you’re referring to or who Kishida Mel is, but mentions of namori at signing events refer to him as male and the few pictures I find indicate he is male: http://blog-imgs-49-origin.fc2.com/m/i/t/mitegoraku/111107_18_1.jpg

    (This is a Google image search, in which namori’s face is not covered. If you click on the actual blog, it is. The man on the right is namori according to the caption.)

  8. @Anonymous – Sorry, the linking to that picture is giving me a hard tome. Look up なもり in Google images and the picture will be in the third row down. It’s a man and a woman sitting next to each other the caption below the man reads “Creator of Yuru Yuri namori-sensei”

  9. Anonymous says:

    @Erica
    I believe that’s a “shop”, as it were (post #26 complains about it: キャプション弄りはたちが悪いからやめとけ). That said, I’m not sure who the person in the picture actually is… the photo itself seems to be commonly associated with kakifly (coincidentally enough) but it seems that may also be in jest.

    I’m surprised that you’ve read about namori holding signings – I encountered a lot of theorizing about why namori shies away from the public eye, so I had assumed that s/he didn’t interact with fans face-to-face.

    The tweet by Kishida Mel:
    https://twitter.com/mellco/status/121974099852529664

    The Hime Cafe that wikipedia cites is in the 2011-03 issue of Yuri Hime, but nothing jumped out at me (I only skimmed it, so I definitely could have missed something!) other than:
    りっちぃ: なもりさんは女子高というわけじゃなかったんですよね?
    なもり: はい、私は共学でしたけど、女子も百合には比較的寛容だった気が.
    Which I suppose would imply that namori is female, but is still a bit oblique for “proof”, imho.

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