So am I the only one around who thinks that KyoAni did the right thing when they didn’t (really) animate the concert?
I was actually happy that the live didn’t get full air-time. We’ve already seen all of those songs animated in full glory back in episode 12. Featuring fully animated lives of the same songs wouldn’t have created any extra value. It’d be like watching an Endless-Eight-style repeat of episode 12. And if they missed and did it worse than episode 12, it’d just make us extra angsty. It won’t really make sense to introduce new songs in an OVA either, especially with a new season upcoming. So I thought what KyoAni did was sensible – they played down the live, and focused instead on the events surrounding it.
Not much happened of course. This episode clearly leaned closer to the slice of life end of the franchise, but that’s not at all a bad thing for me. In fact I really enjoyed this episode. It was a treat watching the girls back on screen and going about their lives brandishing their familiar idiosyncrasies. What I particularly liked about this episode was the interaction between the Afternoon Tea Time girls and the other band members.
I think a good measure of a slice of life show’s goodness is in whether the slice of life it depicts is able to strike unexpected chords with your own, evoking memories and feelings along the way. I especially liked this scene here after our moe moe girls tumbled topsy turvy all over each other during their trial run on stage. The other bands watching immediately shouted support and cheered them on. Watching this, after watching the short exchanges between the band members backstage earlier, struck me with a sudden dawning sense that these are people who are in love with their craft, and the knowledge of that shared passion unites them in a special way. You feel a soft spot for people who love your craft as you do, and when they fumble you know better than the average person how it truly feels like, and so when you cheer them on you do so with a sincerity and fervor that no bystander can match. Differences in age, experience, fashion and genre disintegrates in the light of the common desire.
It was cool that the girls got to interact so much with the other musicians. What’s cooler though was that it was made pretty clear (it was spelled out in fact) that it was Yui and Mugi who largely made the communication possible. It sort of reminded me that there is this certain class of people who are just natural ‘blenders’. They are fearless! And they have the uncanny talent for making people open up and feel at ease. They are the ones who can leap into a company of strangers and end up chattering away like long lost friends five minutes later. You may have noticed people like this in your circle of friends, or maybe you are such a person – natural catalysts for conversations between friends and strangers. Some of us probably owe a large part of our acquaintanceship to people like these. I wish I was more like them sometimes, I wish I am able to speak freely with strangers without fumbling or inadvertently saying something insensible. Unfortunately, it has become pretty clear to me that I am a Mio.
Anyway, great, comfortable episode. As my namesake says, K-ON is comfort anime. I think I actually like the slice of life better than the comedy in this show, even though I thought the comedy was consistently and impeccably executed throughout the first season. Oh, and I’ve mentioned it a couple of times here and there, but drama is a no-no for K-ON. I hope KyoAni has learnt something from the awkwardness that is the famed “Ritsu gets jealous” episode. Come to think of it Keiri was wondering what non-manga readers thought about it. *raises hand* non-manga reader right here, and yes, it was definitely awkward. I thought KyoAni managed to conclude that episode in a very warm and sweet way, but the first half of the episode definitely felt uncomfortable.
Anway! So when does Season 2 hit the screens? This little ova has definitely whetted my appetite for it :)