K-ON (DVD VOLUME 4)
September 21st 2012 22:52
Original story base on the K-ON! Manga by kakifly
Director: Naoka Yamada
Writer: Reiko Yoshida
Starring: Stephanie Sheh (Yui Hirusawa), Cassandra Lee (Ritsu Tainaka), Cristina Valenzuela (Mio Akiyama), Shelby Lindley (Tsumugi Kotobuki), Christine Marie Cabanos (Azusa Nakano), Xanthe Huynh (Ui Hirusawa), Karen Strassman (Sawako Yamanaka) Michelle Ann Dunphy (Jun Suzuki) & Laura Bailey (Nodoka Manabe)
Produced by: Sakura High Band & TBS
English Adaptation by: TBS, Bandai Entertainment Inc in assoc with Bang Zoom Entertainment
Released by: Madman Entertainment
Somewhere deep in the bowels of my neo gothic revivalist abode there lays a copy of K-On Volume 3 no doubt lost amongst the musty old tomes of forbidden lore, the various strange arcane relics and the cobwebs…so as a result I’ve been unable to find that volume and instead have fast forwarded to this one. Such is life…so once again we are back at Sakuragaoka Girls High School and the capers of this school’s Light Music club who also perform as a band with the name After School Teatime. A bunch of girls forming a band in high school in terms of content isn’t anything majorly ground breaking one could say…still in spite of it being a tried and true formula what K-On as a series offers is a back to basics story.
Stories that often focus on people, be they girls, guys or a combo of both genders, forming a band usually end up with them becoming famous on a grand scale and thus achieving stardom and all that’s associated with it…cars, luxury homes etc. In fact if anything such stories often end up becoming farcical as the premise moves from something grounded and genuine into the realms of “as if that would ever happen in real life.” Fortunately K-On is well grounded and rather than running off into the realms of five teenage girls playing sell out crowds in major arenas around the nation it sticks to the high school theme and runs with it. After School Teatime play school festivals and school opening ceremonies rather than major rock arenas…this isn’t to say that the girls aren’t talented, they are…its just that they perform at a more grounded level.
As the last volume in the first season of this anime series there is a sense of transition with the three episodes, after all the four founding member of the club are moving on to their final years and thus looking at heading off to university or work whilst Azusa, the youngest member will be left with the mantle of club leadership and thus have to find new members for the club as well as forming a new group. Still whilst this is a ways off in the future the five girls still stick together as a club and band enjoying themselves as well as playing great music for their school mates. Some might find the whole K-ON thing a little bit too light weight in terms of substance and story but for my way of thinking it has the mix just right. Sure this isn’t Waiting for Godot or the Unbearable Lightness of Being…instead its just good, fun wholesome entertainment which frankly is a far better thing…
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