Friendship is one of the most desirable aspects of life since it allows us to interact with people that share the same interests and have a fun time. Without friendship, people would not be enjoying life and be setting in a corner with a feeling of boredom. In addition, having many friends can increase the chances of getting a job depending on how good your friends are.
K-ON is probably one of those shows that most people wouldn’t know about the friendship theme because of its reputation of being a girls doing cute things kind of show. If you look deeper in the activities and the songs they do, you realize that they are enjoying themselves because of their strong relationship between them. That feeling of friendship is what brought some of the nostalgia explained more in the last editorial when I looked back in my high school years.
Fanart used in this post is made by n@tu
In the beginning of last season, the girls barely knew each other with Yui undecided on what club activities she should do and Tsumugi having her decision set on the chorus club. That changed when Ritsu and Mio decides on saving the Light Music Club by dragging Tsumugi and then Yui into the club. The beginnings of the club start a long and strong friendship between the girls when they start practicing, eating cake and sweets and even having fun at the beach.
When Azusa decided to join the club, she felt uneasy by the slacking off and cake eating the girls was doing. Then again, she doesn’t realize that club activities not all about practicing, its about enjoying the moment. She eventually loosens up in the second beach trip where they have fun playing with a beach ball, making sand castles, or even taking a soak in a hot springs. In the end, Azusa finally loosens up and had fun with the other girls.
In the second season, friendships are explored more in depth. In the field trip to Kyoto (K-ON!! Episode 4), the four girls seems to be having fun with Ritsu and Yui violently petting the cow statue, running in the shrine and hanging messages, having pillow fights and getting lost. These are the some of the fun things they did on the field trip, typical if you went on a class trip to somewhere with some of your friends.
In addition to exploring the friendship of the four girls, they also focus on the juniors (Azusa, Ui and Jun) in Episodes 5 and 13. The girls had their own fun by doing activities playing instruments, going to a water park, batting cage and a sleep over. It was nice to learn more about the three girls’ friendship after all the focus was on the four girls. Even so, Azusa feels so attached to the four girls that she starts daydreaming about them in Episode 13. It happens when you don’t keep in touch with them for a while. However, most people rarely encounters this because the popularity of Social Networks and cell phones.
In the latter part of the season where it becomes the most touching. The senior class had a play on Romeo and Juliet and the After School Tea Time performance. Even though it was uncomfortable for Ritsu and Mio to get down their mismatched roles, they practiced with each other. When they start their performance, they made a really enjoyable and good performance for everyone to remember.
Following a day after the play, it was the After School Tea Time Performance. The performance was their best and was the most emotional. The fans and students at the concert were cheering on wearing the same T-Shirts as the light music club and they were enjoying every minute of it. The girls also had fun pulling jokes, thanking people and playing music, it was simply the best moment in the whole season.
In the end, friendships are not perpetual and they eventually end when they go their separate paths. Even so, people will always remember the fun memories they had together and never let go of it. Despite that, it’s not likely we will see an emotional end since the four girls decided on going to the same college. Azusa in the end is probably going to feel emotional once they go off to college and she is left alone. In the end, it’s not lost as long she maintains contact and visits them sometime.
Apart from the slice of life story, some of the songs in K-ON have elements of friendship inside its meaning such as:
- Fuwa Fuwa Time – Having a fun time after hard work without any fear.
- Fude Pen ~Ballpoint Pen~ – Yui overcoming her challenges to become her best. (Sung by Mio while Yui gets her guitar at home.)
- Pure Pure Heart – Self Explanatory
- U&I – Mainly dedicated to Yui’s sister, Ui.
The friendship in K-ON was pretty realistic and it’s a good representation of a strong friendship. It showed the joys of having one by having fun while not getting to the nasty side of friendships like fighting with each other, drugs, and cheating. While K-ON had some music, the slice of life moments with the girls having fun was far more important for the story. Despite the criticism from some critics over the focus on cake eating and tea drinking, there is no doubt that the show kept to the friendship theme seeing that its once of the most beautiful things in life. Without it, K-ON would be a very dull show without any life.
So, in my closing remarks… K-ON is probably the most touching show from what I have seen and I wouldn’t be surprised if future slice of life shows take some elements of friendship used in K-ON and put them to use in their original works. Heck, any slice of life show has elements of friendship… its just that K-ON took it a step beyond other shows would take it.
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1 Comment… read them or add your own.
I like me some K-On as well, and I’ll always have that “first love” soft-spot for it, but it’s less about “strong friendships” and more about appreciating the good times while you have them. You don’t know whether it’s a “friendship” until it’s been tested, after all. That “dark side” is necessary, otherwise they’re just high school buddies sitting around playing music. But I’m being technical. I still enjoy it.
But is K-On really more touching as a friendship show than, say, Honey and Clover or Aria? I feel it took just about everything from friendship shows before it, and just distilled those elements down to their most inane essences. Not a bad thing, per se, just not something all that memorable.