K On!
Keywords: , , , , , , , , , ,
Notables: Animation - KYOTO
SATOU Satomi
Two childhood friends, hyperactive Ritsu (playing drums) and shy Mio (playing bass guitar) intend to keep the music club of their new high school alive but they have to be at least four members within a month for this purpose. Rich and refined Tsumugi (playing keyboards) joins on the first day; now all they need is a guitar player. Clumsy gluttonous airhead Yui volunteers to join the club as well, misinterpreting "light music" for "simple music" - but she can neither read music nor play any instrument! Will these four girls manage to become a rock band?

Adaption of kakifly's seinen ↗yonkoma manga series K-ON! (pronounced “kei on”, short for "kei ongaku" = "↗Light music").

Read the translated manga on-line at MangaFox
1:27min English TV Opening - YouTube Video
1:30min English TV Ending - YouTube Video
[edit] The ↗K-On franchise:

First season:
  • (2009) K-ON! (1st season, 12 TV episodes)
  • (2009) K-On! TV Special (1st season "episode 13", 1 TV special)
  • (2010) K-ON! OVA (1st season "episode 14", 1 OVA episode)
  • (2009) Ura-On! (4-koma scenes, 7 short DVD special episodes)
Second season: Movie:
Episode Details 
OverallArtAnimationCharacter Design MusicSeries StoryEpisode StoryReviewer
Rent 8 9 7 8 7 7 Devil Doll [series:2076#752]
[Score: 75% = "Rent-"; similar girls-only high school friends story: Azumanga Daioh (TV)]
Present time slice-of-life school comedy with slapstick elements, no fantasy/scifi, no romance, episodic, based on a 4-koma manga. A handful of eccentric girls, including a ↗Manzai duo of an energetic tomboy and a tall, shy model student, a day-dreaming girl with weird ideas, and one girl who's younger but the most serious one of the bunch, going through three years of high school in an all-girls school including school festivals and a school trip, mostly doing nothing in particular but in a funny way, and becoming close friends over time. And don't forget the weird teacher who even joins these girls during the summer camps.
This is Azumanga Daioh (TV) - but also the toned-down version, K-On!, with the Light Music band only serving as vehicle of bringing the protagonists together.

What Myself; Yourself just promised in the ED section (only to never deliver) and Suzumiya Haruhi no Yuutsu just had as a one-time event - a pop/rock band with (only) cute girls. Mostly moe overload and school slice of life; not much of a story or deep characters but a decent delivery of a music band development and good sidekicks; still, without adding Azusa to the band and giving Ui more air time during the second half this anime would have been no more than a "Watch".

Visuals are okay; Animation gets an upgrade for actually being in synch with rhythm, melodies and chords (something a former musician can't help but focus his eyes on) which I've seen much worse in other anime before. Music is good, both songs (of which I like the ED better) are powerful and suitable for this show. Characters are a mixed bag, with clumsy Yui and overzealous Ritsu being compensated by shy Mio and gentle Tsumugi; all four girls rely a bit too much on their weaknesses, i. e. the moe factor. It's telling that kouhai Azusa (as forthcoming fifth band member) will be the most serious musician in this band. Story is the weakest part due to most characters losing the focus on their common goal way too often resulting in a very slow progress on all fronts. But the decent ending made up for many weaknesses during the first half of the show.

First year in high school:
  • Episode 1: (0) Yui joining the club despite her huge obstacle was a tough situation but she showed enough spine to compensate for her clumsiness. Things are running smoothly so far.
  • Episode 2: (0) Again, not much happening; certain embarrassing scenes made up for by Yui at least being honest and Mugi playing her ace at the right moment, thus fixing a problem that could have stopped any progress for a long time. (Those who are fortunate enough to play a ↗Gibson Les Paul themselves may understand Yui feeling so overjoyed.)
  • Episode 3: (+) Still not much happening but the bonds of friendship are growing, and Yui's younger sister Ui is a definite plus.
  • Episode 4: (0) Most of the training camp was a waste of time but Mio's determination and Yui's surprising guitar solo kind of saved the day. (But how did Yui manage to do that?)
  • Episode 5: (0) Sensei is a bit too much, and Mio being afraid of everything is getting old. The next episode may show whether there's any progress at all in this show.
  • Episode 6: (+) Finally, they're playing some music. Bonus points for Ritsu calming down Mio and for the song being an acceptable level for Yui's assumed abilities at this point (except for the final seconds - and who performed those supporting vocals?). It looks like they're actually becoming a band now.
  • Episode 7: (0) The Christmas filler. Pure slice of life with no action but having Ui in the show makes it average at least.
Second year in high school:
  • Episode 8: (+) Ui joins high school, and the clubs gets a new member. Plus another gig on stage. One of the better episodes...
  • Episode 9: (-) ...followed by the weakest one so far. Poor Azusa, getting nekomimi instead of playing in a decent band.
  • Episode 10: (0) The second summer camp, and again mostly a waste of time. Azusa slowly integrating into the band and Yui finally practicing with her new guitar teacher saved this episode from another negative vote.
  • Episode 11: (+) Not that much of a "crisis" as the episode title indicates but I've learned to be thankful for every little bit that's happening in this series. Now on to the climax if there will be any...
  • Episode 12: (+) ...and indeed a decent final episode (rallying all troops in this stage of emergency, and giving Ui another great appearance) saved this show the "Rent" rating overall.
All in all it's surprising how this show had so much success that after covering two years of high school in 14 episodes they got a sequel of 27 episodes for their final year of high school alone.

Last updated Tuesday, July 09 2013. Created Friday, April 01 2011.
Buy 8 8 9 8 8 8 Dreamer [series:2076#2279]
To repeat what Jan-Chan said below.... Kawaii !!! Kawaii !!! Kawaii !!! These girls are the cutest, most kawaii and charming girls to ever grace anime in quite a while.

Art, Animation & Character Designs
Love the artwork here. Practically everything about the artwork is kawaii, uber cute and charming. The characters were the most charming part. They were all illustrated so darn cute!! Yui was definitely my favorite girl. God, so kawaii!!! I don't know if wanted to hug her to death or pinch off her cheeks... if she were real that is.

The OP, though not my tastes wasn't too bad. I think what makes it pretty okay was the accompanying animation. But, it was still a typical piece with a cute female vocalist and an upbeat tempo. The rest of soundrack itself had some nice pianos, xylophone, sax and various other instruments arranged mostly in a jazz flavor or similar. Not bad and somewhat enjoyable. As for the pieces our 4 girls play with their instruments, they were more or less pop pieces with a bit of rock tossed in. Now the ED was a welcome. It was a nice rock piece with good female vocals not so squeeky or childish.... but adult. I actually caught myself bobbing my head to it a bit.

Series and Episode Story
To repeat again, this show was nothing but kawaii. All the girls were just uber cute!! Everything about them... their actions, facial expressions and more. That's what caught my attention, the girls and the pure kawaii-ness. As for the plot, it grew on me. At first, I didn't think much of this series, but then after sitting through oh.... about 15 minutes of the first episode, I fell in love with the girls, then the series.

As for the plot, there really isn't one. It's episodic from beginning to end... and every episode was a pure joy to watch. Even though the episodes were nothing spectacular or amazing, they were still full of fun.... and of course, due to the girls. The only real gripe I had was even though this series was about a group of girls in a band, there was hardly any music that was played.... rarely. I was hoping there would be more pieces they would do.

Overall, it was a fun series to watch. Don't expect anything dramatic, anything romantic, anything mystifying, or mysterious, but rather, all light-hearted fun entertainment with 4 kawaii girls in their daily high school lives.

Last updated Thursday, November 11 2010. Created Thursday, November 11 2010.
Rent 8 8 9 9 7 7 21 [series:2076#3223]
A decent series, not captivating but not poor either. Quite moe, and not really my sort of show, but I enjoyed it nonetheless.

I found that if I had several shows to watch, this would be a good starter as it got me in the mood for something more serious.

The episode stories were pretty predictable unfortunately. The OP was decent, ED was good and the music played by the band was silly but surprisingly alright.

It's good enough that I'm watching season two now.

Last updated Tuesday, August 03 2010. Created Tuesday, August 03 2010.
Watch 9 7 8 6 5 5 Ggultra2764 [series:2076#1552]
This was yet another moeblob slice-of-life anime that came out during the late 2000s when its popularity was booming with the gimmick here being that the girls focused on are part of a light music club. The anime got quite a bit of hype during the time of its release and even to this day, I fail to see what drew people into it. The light music club gimmick's mostly a backdrop for showing off the odd quirks and simple archetypes for the five girls and their teacher that make up the club and there isn't much focus put into the musical element of the series beyond concerts, which are only there to show off the unity the band have for one another. Only genuine praise I can give the series is for its gorgeous artwork with beautiful scenic shots and doing well with making the character designs look cute or beautiful without going overboard. Beyond that, I'm mostly indifferent to this series. Only give it a shot if moeblob or slice-of-life snags your interest for anime.

Last updated Sunday, March 30 2014. Created Sunday, June 28 2009.
Unevaluated Forbin [series:2076#1573]
First Look.

It's ok so far.

Might be a KyoAni show but it sure doesn't look it

But this thing is so MOE I feel it coming out of my ears.


Last updated Tuesday, June 09 2009. Created Wednesday, April 08 2009.
Rent Stretch [series:2076#628]
(All episodes watched):

I had been planning to write a fairly lengthy review after watching the first episode of K-ON, the single new Spring series which I most looked forward to. The only problem: very few thoughts came to mind as I watched episode one. There seemed to be nothing seriously wrong with it and nothing outstandingly right, either. About all I could say was that, like almost everybody else, the show it most reminded me of would be Hyakko. Still, this seemed like it should be fun and I was curious where the "band" would go from here. I hoped the four main characters develop more distinct personalities with time; so far, Yui was the largely talentless girl who was lukewarm about joining but was press-ganged because the club desperately needed a fourth member to avoid being disbanded.

Fortunately, this was a show which steadily grew on me. How do I categorize K-ON? A comedy which is a level or two above the usual shows which feature modest jokes, predictable plotlines and are generally worth watching but unmemorable. K-ON, in contrast, has a fairly novel premise, likeable characters and above average humor. Though the word 'angst' never comes to mind, the girl's struggle to overcome semi-serious problems is engaging and you can't help rooting for them. These are high school girls who aren't particularly interested in boyfriends and just want to have some harmless fun with their friends--and maybe even play a little music.

I made a habit of watching K-ON first when I began a new week's worth of anime episodes, partly because the fansubs were always early and on time, and partly because it was a neat show. Episode nine was great fun as the Light Music Club has finally acquired a fifth member. The only problem is that this person actually takes music seriously, unlike the goofy original members. The clever style of humor, with jokes flying fast and furious, had me giggling continually.

I guess the characters of K-On never did get particularly deep, but that wasn't really necessary for the sort of show which this turned out to be. I noticed that the principal characters seem to all have been played by newcomer VAs. Strangely, even at the end I have not a whole lot to say, except that I thoroughly enjoyed K-ON, wish it had been a 26-er, and will probably be rewatching it eventually.

My favorite line: "Cat ears might look good on you" --Sawako

Last updated Monday, April 04 2011. Created Sunday, April 05 2009.
Rent 9 9 9 9 8 8 Silence [series:2076#2939]
All episodes watched

I started watching this thinking of the concert in Suzumiya Haruhi, ie I was expecting to be blown away with the music. Sadly, I wasn't. So if you are expecting dazzling music pieces with awesome concert performances, don't. These are normal high school girls, who are not even that good.

That aside, this series is cute. These girls are licensed to be cute. It's cute from beginning to end without a break in between. There are no jokes that made me roll on the floor laughing, but smile-inspiring moments are very frequent.

The stories are somewhat episodic, the series as a whole lacks impact. Well this is certainly not a drama, but the ending is not really original. About every other school life comedy ends this way (think Lucky Star). The characters are likable (did i say cute?), and we get a good idea what each of the main characters are like. Not bad overall, but not good enough to get a buy.

Last updated Sunday, June 21 2009. Created Sunday, April 05 2009.
Rent Jan-Chan [series:2076#967]
Kawaii !!! Kawaii !!! Kawaii!!!

It has been said that 'cute girls do cute things in a very cute way!' and this series is all about four uber-cute first-year high-school girls doing cute things.

If you enjoyed Minami-ke or Lucky Star or Strawberry Marshmallow, then you probably would like this series.

Last updated Saturday, December 26 2009. Created Sunday, April 05 2009.

Other Sites
Japanese Series Web Site http://www.tbs.co.jp/anime/k-on/

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