Mouse over screenshots for captions
It’s the start of a new school year, and the new crop of freshmen are coming in… most importantly, Ui is now a high schooler! Thus making it ok – or at least not so illegal – to fantasize about her in more places than the kitchen. One would think that her amicable disposition and responsible attitude would make her the school idol (Minami Haruka comes to mind), but when faced with all-trick juggernauts like Mio and Mugi, it’s understandable that legions of fanboys aren’t throwing themselves at Ui’s feet. Not yet, at least. Maybe Ui will learn how to play the castanets.

Yui, Mugi, and Ritsu end up in the same class, which leaves lil Mio a victim of the Kagami Konundrum – you’re all aloneeee, there’s nobody there beside youuuu…. except Nodoka, but she’s purposely drawn not as cute as the other chars and therefore an afterthought. Unless you’re into short-haired seito kaichou meganekko that aren’t as good looking as the rest of the cast.

The amount of time that transpires between each episode is a bit startling at times, as only eight episodes in and we’ve gone full circle back to club recruiting again. It seems like they were able to do this by combining episodes – onsen ep with beach ep, for example, and by completely skipping the “visit the rich girl’s house” ep. It’s not necessarily a bad way to go, it’s just a little disorienting at times. Especially when it comes to Yui’s guitaring ability. More on this later.

Sawachan-sensei provides them with some costumes, which don’t really make much sense as they show off absolutely no skin (unless you’ve got fetishus domesticus), but immediately salvages it with maid costumes worthy of a good design award. Ui brings along her not so cute friend, which is probably the most accurate indication that there’s no way in hell the girl is gonna join the club. She’s also kinda fat by anime standards. You know, her BMI is somewhere between “IRL skinny” and “healthy weight”, which is way past “borderline anorexic” and “it’s no wonder you’re concerned about your cup size”. Regardless, the keionbu puts on a rather horrific performance – perhaps intentionally, which has the fat chick running away in disgust.

Fast forward to their next live performance – this time, they’ve got a lineup of four songs, all with some trademark Mio frilly name like “My Love is a Stapler”. I should point out that the Japanese word for stapler is “hochikisu” – hotchkiss – some old school stapler company, which was probably adopted into the Japanese language because it sounds a lot more moe than “su-u-i-n-gu-ra-in”. Yui owns the intro riff but forgets to sing again, but Mio is there for the rescue.

After such an epic performance, you’d think the club room would be filled with eager schoolgirls, but nope – they’re just there to enjoy the show, not be a part of it. Save for one… the loli Kana-chan looking chick, whose name is actually Azusa, but until she does something terrifically cool, Kana-chan she will always be compared to…

Up next on K-ON!: Azusa dress-up
A lot happening in this ep – Ui shows up, a new character is introduced, Mio gets some good screentime, the girls dress up in uncool and then very cool costumes, there’s a pseudo-performance prefaced by a pseudo-track meet (har har), a gratuitous shot of Azusa’s ankles, then a real performance with Mio saving the day, and then Ritsu tackles the poor freshman. Whew.

A couple points need addressing:

– Ui’s popularity, or apparent lack of: it seems like in every other non-KyoAni anime, girls of Ui’s mold would be the school idol or at least extremely popular – Minami Haruka, Shirakawa Kotori, that Hirano Aya imouto in Akane-iro, but those in KyoAni always seem to slip under the radar. Or, if they really are popular, we never really catch wind of it. Perhaps KyoAni understands that these girls are too perfect, too invulnerable that they seem unreal – and this is why Mio reclaims the top spot on our unofficial K-ON ranking:

1. Mio-chan
2. Akiyama Mio
3. MioMio
4. Big Drama Akiyama
5. Ui

– Frequently used plot devices, like ostracizing Mio to another class just to get a rise out of her: love it.
– Mio’s affinity towards photography: I guess it’s just there to add another dimension to her character, but sometimes I hope they expand a bit more upon it. Not really sure how… just a passing thought.
– Maid outfits: what a perfect opportunity to cut Mio’s dress short and have her moe moe kyun, but that wasn’t even mentioned. I guess that’s why she’s the best.
– Azusa’s feet: they are TINY!
– Mio’s clutch save: this is an important point and one that I’ve made before, and will probably keep making – Mio is a much better singer than Yui. Like, leagues beyond. Like, Adam Lambert over Kris Allen. And yet, Kris still wins because VoteForTheWorst is hilarious and America doesn’t want a gay guy to be Idol, just like how a clearly cooler and vocally superior side character can’t be lead singer. It was made quite obvious in this ep when Mio started the song but then Yui took over and just butchered it. BRING MIO BACK!
– Bringing back the music: many of the comments from the previous episode had viewers wanting more music. KyoAni knows what they’re doing – this ep was all about the music, and it turned out great. The fact that the girls performed four songs for this live means we got ourselves a full-blown K-ON album coming eventually. Here’s to hoping that the Mio character single will have her singing all these songs herself without Yui’s annoying voice fuxing it all up.
– Club recruiting: in all seriousness, why do they want new members? What would the new members do, clean the drums? Pyrotechnics? Do the laundry? A band can’t have more than four or five members… what exactly is Azusa gonna play? Well, I’m sure all of you already know the answer to that, so let’s just treat it as a rhetorical question. Should you feel the need to spoil, please take advantage of the spoiler tag lol.
– Our good man Josh Garrado over at YouTube has already posted the piano versions of several K-ON tracks, with sheet music soon to come, on his channel.


  1. I personally think Yui is a much better singer then your giving her credit for, sure, Mio IS better, but Yui is far from bad.

    and even though I don’t really keep track of American Idol, but I really didn’t see either singer being blatantly better over the other from what I have heard from them.

  2. I feel like spoiling. Cause it’s 11:19AM and I’m cool like that.

    Show Spoiler ▼

    There, I did it. And I feel awesome.

  3. I think the VA for Yui needs to tone down the cutesy when she’s singing a bit. Too much is too much. She is a good singer though, but Mio’s voice is more pleasing to the ears.

  4. Ohhh!!!! jaalin you dirty ankle bastard xD well like always it was a moexplosion like always and OMG!!!!!!!!! i`m on first comments page, this is a good day yeah!!!!

  5. To be honest I feel this is the best episode so far. You get a full LIVE and 1/20 of one, imouto screen time, new character time, focused plot time, Mio time, maid time, cosplay time, and a duet. Awesome stuff.

    As for Azusa…well let’s just say Yui has some competition. Compared to the manga I feel they made Azusa too reserved. We’ll see come this week how it all turns out.

    Anyways, there’s 5 more eps left. Next one is integrating-Azusa-into-the-group focused and the 10th is most likely another beach episode!

    Hope they continue to another season but don’t make us wait 3 more yrs for it.

  6. Here I was thinking you dropped this. Anyway. My fate has been restored I’m going to watch this till the end now. This was a fair dose of quality(or more than enough)to keep me watching this series.

    I SAY MOAR!!!!!!!!!!!!

  7. Jaalin, I understand your woes of the difference of vocal abilities, but I do not think it is absolutely clear cut as to who the lead singer will be. If they really want to put up Yui, then this episode there really isn’t any reason why she has to forget the lyrics – in fact Yui could have just pulled it through and we will all think that is fine. Instead we see Mio comes up and saves the day, which in my opinion shows that her role will not be less important than Yui’s.

  8. LOL Yui’s voice really did stick out like a sore thumb. It was almost annoying if I didn’t think it was extremely cute…and typical of her character. Its too bad the other girls, even riichan, are WAY overshadowed by a goddess. They get a bad rap in my opinion.

  9. I am not sure if anyone noticed, but in K-ON not only there are no male characters, there are also very few of them on backgrounds. In fact, with the exception of a FEW cases (so few that I might be able to count them with my two hands), on a random shot with a lot of students you will only see girls.

    Take this episode, for example: just take a look at pic 8, 9, and 12.

  10. @illu > Yea, I noticed that too, though, it’s not surprising since they go to an all-girl’s high school. At least, that’s what I picked up after several episodes. Aside teachers you don’t see any male students, and the only time you actually do is during a public event such as the school festival in EP 6:

    I would agree that if the girls did go to an intermixed school and the animators only showed the girls, this series really is a prime example of moe-moe anime. I still love it though!

  11. @Eri & illu

    How can there be fanboys when it appears to be no guys at their school. Look at the screenshots for all of the past episodes, there are no male students!

    Aya Reiko
  12. The costume captions were funny. I can’t believe our girls are growing up so fast. >_< I already like Azusa more than I do Yui. Heh.
    @lack of males comments: *references the camera flash scene after Mio’s fall* O, they’re there; they’re there when they need to be.

  13. Also; “except Nodoka, but she’s purposely drawn not as cute as the other chars and therefore an afterthought. Unless you’re into short-haired seito kaichou meganekko that aren’t as good looking as the rest of the cast.” Yikes, so harsh.

  14. I can’t say what is the matter with Ui’s figure Jaalin pointed out, and I can’t really understand the majority of Jaalin’s anklebone fetish has.

    The bird flu caption made me roftl.

    Yui won over my heart to my surprise ever since this show came on. But I do admit, Mio is indeed moe…!

  15. @illu > They don’t but it is pretty much implied by the fact that there are no male students whatsoever, though there are male teachers. Plus every class is made up of girls.

  16. @illu
    The gate of the school has a nameplate and it says it’s a private school and its official name is Sakuragaoka girl’s high school.
    I think this school is kinda like a prep school in the US.

  17. Quote:

    “- Mio’s clutch save: this is an important point and one that I’ve made before, and will probably keep making – Mio is a much better singer than Yui. Like, leagues beyond. Like, Adam Lambert over Kris Allen. And yet, Kris still wins because VoteForTheWorst is hilarious and America doesn’t want a gay guy to be Idol, just like how a clearly cooler and vocally superior side character can’t be lead singer. It was made quite obvious in this ep when Mio started the song but then Yui took over and just butchered it. BRING MIO BACK!”

    Well, if it’s any consolation for Mio (and Adam), they’ll almost certainly be far more successful after the fact than their opposite numbers are likely to be…

    …though you never know, I guess.

  18. Hooray for more music!

    Glad to finally see Yui doing vocals and I’m very happy for that. Still I find it it ridiculous that they had to choose a vocalist within SECONDS of the performance. What kind of band does that? It felt like they just wanted to pimp more moe time out of Mio.

    As for Azuza, she doesn’t feel right. She’s too….serious. I guess that’s the point though, I can foresee her being the sole voice of reason among the among the crazy(but moe) band.

  19. What exactly is “Moe Moe Kyun!” ?

    I remember them pointing it out on an earlier episode but is it a reference to another Japanese culture thing?

    From what I can tell it basically means “super moe”. I dunno though.

    Samurai Pumpkin
  20. @Samurai Pumpkin
    When you get a sight of a girl you love so much, you might feel your heart squeezed with the magnitude of your emotion.
    Kyun is meant to be an expression of that kind of state of mind.
    So, “super moe” is quite accurate I guess.

  21. Your Adam Lambert comment seriously made my day.

    But enough about American Idol, I am glad I am not the only one annoyed at Yui’s singing. Her voice is too cute. Unless people love overly cute voices, they will all prefer Mio’s voice better. However I think Mio saving Yui right there actually tells us that she might be taking over the vocalist position from now on… maybe. ^^;;

  22. kris allen’s singing isn’t that bad either, my point is that mio’s is much better. but yes, i know, it’s mainly a matter of preference, and those overly cutsey voice just makes me shudder.

  23. I didn’t mind Yui’s voice too much when it was both Yui and Mio singing together. Both of them sing in character, which is generally not easy. The main thing is that the way Yui’s voice is, all the overtones are far apart, which makes her voice sound “clean” when speaking, but also kind of “thin” as a singer. Quite possibly an artifact of the nature of the character voice portrayal. Mio’s voice has more low-end harmonics to it, and sounds a little more from the diaphragm when she’s singing, which makes her voice sound thicker and seem like it has more “body” to it. That sort of difference, though, makes for a fairly good harmony between the two of them. May not be as “full” as a hypothetical duet between Mio and Mugi, but it fits well with what would widely be considered as an aesthetically pleasing harmony to hear.

    Well, I suppose it could be worse. Can you imagine if they got a whole load of people on board and became a sort of anime version of Morning Musume or Dream? Moe overload.

  24. Stop picking on Yui! She has her own appeal. And yes Mio has a more full bodied voice but Yui also has her own niche. EX. I dont think Cagayake! GIRLS whould have been anywhere near as good with Mio singing..on the other hand Yui could never pull off Dont say “lazy”, let alone the sweet bitter beauty song.

    My point is there are situations where a certain type of voice is needed and with Mio and Yui they have most of their bases covered.

  25. Hmm…

    Show Spoiler ▼

    Very fun episode. 😀

  26. Well, they’re all there to fill in a particular moe pigeonhole. If not for that, there wouldn’t really be sites dedicated to some individual’s perceived moe superiority of Yui or Mugi and so on.

    Yui fills that “airheaded ditz” moe niche. Ritsu is the “genki fun girl” moe. Mugi is the “sweet elder sister” moe. While Mio is the “delicate flower,” which apparently has the greatest draw. A certain factor in Mio’s appeal, though, is how she has both Ritsu and Sawako-sensei to serve as sort of mortal enemies who bring her weakness out to light. If she didn’t have these counterparts, she’d probably appear to be an otherwise normal character.

    Azusa, for that matter Show Spoiler ▼

    BTW, I also vaguely remember the name of the school being mentioned in earlier episodes where “jogakuin” was included, which pretty much said it was an all-girls school. One thing that didn’t quite add up about that, though, was Sawako-sensei’s history in that school in the K-ON-bu, where she had a crush on some guy. How does that work if he’s in another school?

  27. Rumor has it that new OP and ED of K-ON! will come out soon, possibly ep.9 this week, and that all 5 members of the band including the newcomer Azusa are credited to both songs.
    It’s still possible this is total BS, but we’ll see.

  28. Ok I’m sorry to tell you it turned out the rumor was false, almost.
    OP song is basically the same but Azusa plays guitar on the screen and the song itself has Azusa’s guitar part.
    ED hasn’t changed a bit.
    I’m pretty sure you will be shocked how small Azusa looks standing next to Mio.


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