K-ON! #01 — Decode

April 2nd, 2009


Are we sure this isn’t being made by A-1?

New Season Disclaimer:

I prefer to give every show a chance. You never know when your dream-eating insect Mai HiME knockoff will turn out to be a psychological romantic thriller, or the strange moeblob show will be full of wit and urine jokes. However, my preferences are still my preferences, and while I’ll endeavor to at least convey what I do or do not like, there are genres of shows that I just plain don’t particularly enjoy. My opinions are based on nothing more than a gut reaction to what I watched literally 10-15 minutes prior and should be construed as nothing more and nothing less than that.


What’s surprising here is how mediocre the overall production is, especially given KyoAni’s reputation. When things are in motion, ribbons flop, hair moves, skirts billow, it looks sort of decent. Then as soon as movement settles, everything morphs into textureless blobs. It reminded me more of A-1’s particular style than KyoAni’s. Lots of movement, occasionally excessive as they bob and weave like they were boxing instead of mindlessly chattering, but they completely sacrifice the art quality and never look back. You could probably make a complete gallery of all the different ways they distort the hands in this show, occasionally even reducing them to half-inch stubs jutting out from their sleeves.

As I expected from both the source and past encounters with the general genre, the content bored me to tears. The main joke abused ad nauseum was "girls making silly faces" instead of "telling a joke." Felli makes cuter faces anyway and satisfies my violence quota to boot, pun fully intended. Sadly, the terrible castanet joke that I mocked in my preview got used not once, not twice, but three times in the episode, each time causing me a little more pain than before. There were a couple that made me chuckle, such as the Detroit Metal City gag, but I wouldn’t take that one to the bank.  Music was decent enough, but it did give me the nearly overwhelming urge to take a nap.

If you’ve already made up your mind to enjoy this based on liking shows having A.) Girls, and B.) KyoAni, I don’t think anything I say will dissuade you from that. In fact, I’d imagine the opposite would be more likely. I can’t imagine that this is going to win over any new converts to the "watch girls do mundane things while making silly faces" subgenre. *shrug* At least it didn’t inspire any kind of sarcastic bile in me, unlike other things I could name. That’s got to count for something.




Buying a guitar.

Posted in Anime | 40 Comments »

40 Shouts From the Peanut Gallery

  • Avisch says:

    Reminds me of A-1’s style aswell.

  • Ray P. says:

    So this is Lucky Star lite with music?

  • My first impression to T. I personally think you are spot on about every point you’ve made, especially that Kyoani moe fans will love it to death, but that it won’t be drawing any new fans to their preferred genre.

    Ditto on the excessive movement too. It seems like an animator’s trick to try and leave viewers in awe of “superior animation” quality, but it really does just come across as excessive movement for the sake of it, and you can see where the drawbacks come in other areas.

    And to the commenter above, more like Lucky Star Extra Strength with Music.

  • Kikaifan says:

    I don’t mind the art (I guess I’m cool with textureless malformed blobs?) but I have to agree about the writing/actual content density. Pretty meh.

    But all this Felli-promotion is starting to make me curious about Regios.

  • Anonymous says:

    doesn’t this look a bit like a grown up Ushio?


  • asdfg says:

    A-1 doesn’t have a style.

    Unless one particular show (Birdy) suddenly equates to a style for a studio known for mediocre production values

  • Sniperk says:

    Agreed about the A-1 “style”. It look a lot like Kannagi in various points.

  • Kraker2k says:

    Looks hella a lot like Kannagi.
    Which is an A1 show.
    Whose director, Yamakan used to work for KyoAni, and I believe the character designer on K-on is Yamakan’s successor at KyoAni so he/she carries on the same style.

  • Aroduc says:

    Birdy, Birdy 2, Kannagi, and Trinity Soul actually. 80% of the ‘serious’ anime they’ve made thus far.

  • asdfg says:

    Seriously? I mean Trinity Soul has horrible stilted animation with limited movement, similar to Kuroshitsuji…

    Even Kannagi has maybe a few decent eps, but is nothing special

  • hashi says:

    I disagree completely with your post. Loved this first episode. Loved the animation. Loved the humor. Loved the voices. This is the Lucky Star KyoAni animation, not the Clannad/SHnY animation. Real Lucky Star hands, blobby but very expressive and mobile. Great shots of legs.

    But I think the main thing that distinguishes fans of this show from non-fans is differing senses of humor. If you like the humor, you like the show. I do. Really, it is just beyond me that anyone could not like either Kannagi or this. It takes all kinds. I should know, I’m one, lol.

  • Anonym says:

    Lol I can see it from far away now… KyoAni fangirls and fanboys defending their suck-shows from bad critique.

  • Sterling01 says:

    The girl with long black hair reminds me of Yomi

  • sage says:

    What’s surprising here is how mediocre the overall production is, especially given KyoAni’s reputation.

    Most of their budget is being allocated to Haruhi 2, d’oh.

  • sage says:

    Well, A-1 had a lot of help from Ordet on Kannagi, and most of Ordet’s staff was from KyoAni.

  • Kaisos says:

    Except that most KyoAni shows, excepting Munto, are not bad at all.

    Hell, this actually looks pretty decent for a moe show.

  • serenade_beta says:

    It does, doesn’t it?! Apparently, her name is Mi”o”, but at first, I heard “Miyo” which is Yomi backwards. XD

    @Aroduc’s post

    I couldn’t agree more… Though I’m going to give it a few more episodes and see how it is.
    Though the KyoAni fans getting overly defensive over criticism is… Puh, “painful” to watch.

  • Kikaifan says:

    Defending something from bad critique is natural. It’s good critique people should accept.

  • Chen says:

    I just got rickrolled by a bunch of coalguys.

    I lol’d.

  • Yue says:

    No fair! I like this show… then again, i also like Haruhi! ^o^

  • jeffng9 says:

    wow this is one big hit if u ask me around 8 fansubers are subbing this series.

  • Kaisos says:


    This is the sort of person the trolls love.

  • jeffng9 says:

    we need this kind of anime fromt ime to time to refresh ourselves. that my opinion ^^

  • […] so much as the premise being odd and the girls making funny faces. It made me laugh, unlike others (though I agree with his assessment of the episode on numerous levels), but I’m not […]

  • […] skip the traditional summary, I know you all hate that. Plus Aroduc does it better.The character designs definitely give off a Lucky Star vibe. Lots of singular aspects of the show […]

  • […] in the past, so I can’t call that a coincidence. And while I can agree with Aroduc’s saying that this looks more like an A-1 style production, I certainly didn’t think it looked as terrible as he described ( I love A-1 though; more so […]

  • Rincewind says:

    Wow! What pleasant surprise. I just LOVED the first episode of K-ON! Yui is so so soooo cute.
    And the ending is one of the best ending, ever.
    I cant wait for the second episode.

  • Anonymous says:

    You simply don’t enjoy any anime do you? I’m not even referring to K-on! or anything, I haven’t given it a shot but everything I have read from you is just complain, whine and hate. Give up anime and do something else with your life, because unleass you’re a masochist I don’t see any reason for you to turn on your computer to watch more stuff you know you hate-that amounts to nothing short of pathetic.

  • RockSmash! says:

    It’s about time somebody said this. Look how the guy’s only response is crossing crap out. Weak. I look for blogs about my favorite anime and accidentally pull this guy occasionally-I read out of morbid curiosity and see him just tear every show to pieces

  • Anonym says:

    If you’re talking to Anonymous, Haha! If you’re talking to Aroduc, then you just don’t get it…. I think O.O

  • Aroduc says:

    Actually, they’re both the same person. Somebody forgot that I can see IPs. ^^

    And, for that matter, he also forgot that is site this for my amusement, not to pat them on the back and say how awesome the flavor of the month is.

  • Rocksmash! says:

    If you can see ip then I hope you can tell the difference between two different sets of numbers. You have to admit that every post you do sounds like another reason for you to struggle and finish the series. At least admit that!

  • Aroduc says:

    Only the ones that you like.

  • AnimaticallyInsane says:

    i actually love the ending song for this anime didnt anyone else liked it?

  • Rincewind says:

    As I said before, ME! I love the ED!! And the anime too.

  • miken-chan says:

    The good news? I made it through the first episode without falling asleep. That’s already more than half an episode past what I got through in Clannad and Kanon…The bad news? I was doing my homework the entire time. It’s bad when a Gonzo show pulls me in more than a more “reputable” studio like KyoAni *eying Shangri-La*.

    The ED song was awesome though, I give KyoAni that.

  • […] in the past, so I can’t call that a coincidence. And while I can agree with Aroduc’s saying that this looks more like an A-1 style production, I certainly didn’t think it looked as terrible as he described ( I love A-1 though; more so […]

  • Anonymous says:

    hey hey hey .. anime freaks.. :D

  • […] so many others have already done a mighty fine job of doing so (subculture, randomc, fukazenna!, Tenka Seiha et al.), so I’m just focusing on my general […]