K-ON!’s Weirdest Merchandise

Wanna look your best at work with Mio!

According to a recent article from ANN, the K-ON! merchandising juggernaut has made 1.8 billion yen in the last three months. That’s approximately $20 million USD, and that doesn’t even include the video sales and licensing rights for the anime or CDs. It’s not on par with merchandising juggernauts like Star Wars or Gundam, but it’s still pretty impressive.

But out of all this merchandise, there are a few products that are rather… bizarre. Let’s take a look at those odd and ridiculous accessories that really make people scratch their heads and beg the question,”What were they thinking?”

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K-ON! Manga Ends in September

Could the K-ON! manga be coming to an end? This story just went live on ANN.

A footnote on the bottom of kakifly’s K-ON! manga in the September issue of Houbunsha’s Manga Time Kirara magazine lists the next installment as the final one. The September issue officially ships on Monday.

Now, don’t start panicking just yet. This only means that K-ON! will no longer be serialized in Manga Time Kiara. It’s entirely possible that kakifly could continue the manga in another serial magazine. On the other hand, this could mean that the next chapter will indeed be the final one, and the series will end with the girl’s graduation from high school. This theory is further supported by the K-ON!! anime, which will finish airing in late September. Perhaps the manga and anime will end simultaneously, like Full Metal Alchemist: Brotherhood.

Personally, I think it’s about time for K-ON! to take its last bow. It’s been a fun ride, but the show has become somewhat creatively bankrupt and repetitive as of late. But don’t despair, moe fans! Kyoto Animation’s next project, Nichijou, is already in the works.

[Via ANN]

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Review: K-ON!! 17

Use the Force, Yui!

After last week’s slight disappointment, I was hoping that this week’s episode of K-ON!! would be an improvement. Thankfully, it did succeed to some extent, but there were some noticeable problems in it. This episode felt like a giant tease, making us think the girls would stop procrastinating and actually practice for once. How foolish of me to get my hopes up; they spend the whole episode goofing off yet again, not getting a damn thing accomplished. But despite that, I somehow still ended up not hating this. The inherent moeblob charm that kept me sane throughout the more aggravating scenes. It’s one of those,”not bad but not good either.” episodes, in my opinion.

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K-ON! Dub Cast Announced

More news about Bandai’s upcoming K-ON! release! They’ve announced that the show’s English language dub will be handled by Bang Zoom! Entertainment, the studio responsible for dubbing both The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya and Lucky Star. The role of Yui will be played by the prolific Stephanie Sheh, who played Mikuru in Haruhi and Akira in Lucky Star. Mio will be voiced by Cristina Vee, most famous for her fandubs of various anime songs on YouTube. Here is her rendition of Super Driver:

I must say, I’m a bit conflicted about these choices. Stephanie Sheh is an experienced voice actress, but her take on Mikuru was too high and squeaky for my liking. On the other hand, she did a GREAT job as Akira, so I honestly have no idea whether she’ll be good as Yui. As for Cristina Vee… she has an awesome singing voice, but little anime voice-acting experience. Is she really up to the challenge of playing Mio, K-ON!’s most popular character? Also, does this mean she’ll be dubbing K-ON!’s music into English?

More importantly, who will they get to dub Ritsu?

Review: K-ON!! 16

Who wants a sticker?

I’ve been quite enthusiastic about K-ON!! lately. Every episode since 13 has been good, and I was especially hyped after last week’s enjoyable offering. Sadly, this week I was in for a disappointment. While the latest episode wasn’t necessarily bad, I didn’t enjoy it all that much. Sure, it had some really cute moments in it, but I feel that the plot was far too repetitive. It relied all too much on the cuteness, eschewing any meaningful plot or character development.  The end result was an episode that was a bit disappointing. Don’t get me wrong, it wasn’t exactly bad… but it wasn’t very good either.

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The Four Laws of Moe

Is this moe's true form?

This is a refined and expanded version of an editorial I originally wrote for Japanator. The original can be found here.

It seems one of the biggest problems in the ongoing moe debate is the lack of any concrete definition for the term “moe.” This has lead to all sorts of argument among otaku; some believe the term can be applied to any female character the viewer considers cute, while others argue it should be strictly limited to its original Japanese definition. Personally, I think the truth lies in between these two extremes. After all, language is defined by its usage, not by the opinions of a few crazed fanboys or some dusty old dictionary. Therefore, based on my own observations and research, I have created the Four Laws of Moe. I believe these laws lay out, in clear and concise detail, the exact parameters of moe and what traits a character must exhibit in order to be considered as such. Of course, these laws are merely a reflection of my own opinion; feel free to improve upon them, argue against them or even construct your own alternative theory. Whatever the case, I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comment section below.

Read more after the break!

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Review: K-ON!! 15

So thirsty... need milk tea...

After a rather awesome episode of K-ON!! last week, I honestly wasn’t sure what to expect this time. Would I be bored out of my skull with some more eye candy filler similar to episode 13, or would this show manage to maintain it’s wit and humor? Thankfully, this week’s episode wasn’t a disappointment; it was just as good–if not better–than last week’s. The comedy was entertaining, the story solid and the characters as enjoyable as ever.

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Review: K-ON!! 14

SURPRISE! :3

From the tone of my last K-ON!! review, you may have thought I despised this show. But it’s quite the contrary; I love K-ON!!. It’s chock full of laugh-out-loud humor and entertaining characters, and this week’s show was a great example of that. After my disappointment from last week’s subpar offering, this episode thoroughly rekindled my love for this series. It was filled with enjoyable humor and charm, and was a sheer delight from beginning to end.

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New K-ON!! OP and ED

The latest episode of K-ON!! has brought with it an entirely new OP and ED, replacing the much-maligned Go! Go! Maniac and Listen!! with fresh songs and animation.

Utau yo Miracle

No, Thank You!

I’m not too keen on the new OP; it strikes me as bland and forgettable. As for the new ED, I think it has promise, but I’d like to hear the full song before passing final judgement. I’ll have to wait, though, since the singles don’t come out until August 4th.

Review: K-ON!! 13

Let me say this now: the one real reason I started watching K-ON! at all was because everyone kept talking about it on Twitter. So I thought, “Hey! I wanna look cool, too! I should watch it!”  However, the second season has been a bit of a disappointment. It doesn’t feel like any major plot developments have come along in a while, and that’s reflected in this episode. K-ON!! 13 is doesn’t deviate much from the standard formula we’ve seen thus far.  There are a few different elements shown, but ultimately it’s just eye candy for the fans. I enjoyed it somewhat, but that was mainly because of Azusa in her swimsuit. But let’s cut to the chase, shall we?

Read more after the jump!

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