K-ON! is licensed by Bandai

Are they laughing with Bandai… or at them?

I’m still in shock.

Despite their financial woes, Bandai Entertainment has just announced at Anime Expo that they’ve acquired the rights to K-ON!‘s first season. There’s no word yet if it will be dubbed or released on Blu-ray. Bandai also announced a series of live-action K-ON! marketing videos similar to the ASOS Brigade series for Haruhi. For these, they’ve cast Christina Vee as Mio, Karri Shirou as Yui, “Kix” as Tsumugi and “Briana” as Ritsu.

Hang on a second… Christina Vee as MIO? She’s got a great singing voice, but their personalities couldn’t be more different. This is going to be most interesting…

I think it’s likely that Bandai will give K-ON! a dub, probably recycling many of the cast members from the Haruhi and Lucky Star dubs. However, in my opinion, their English version of “God Knows” was ear-splittingly painful, especially when compared to the original Japanese song. Given how music-oriented K-ON! is, I’m hoping they can track down some voice actors who can actually sing. Of course, I’d also be perfectly happy with a sub-only release.

Oh, and Bandai? If you try to pull the same “no Japanese audio track” crap that you did with Kurokami, I’m not buying it. Period.

[Via ANN]

Trailer for K-ON! PSP game revealed

The rumors are true! Sega, the makers of the wildy popular PSP rhythm game Hatsune Miku: Project DIVA, are turning their musical talents towards making a K-ON! game. Check out the trailer below!

Like its Vocaloid-themed predecessor, K-ON! After School Live!! is basically a rhythm game set to the music of the hit anime. You can play as any of the five Houkago Tea Time band members, either solo or with up to four other friends. (Dibs on Ritsu!) The game is slated for a September 30th release in Japan, and priced at ¥6090 or approximately $68 USD. Sadly, there’s little chance of it being licensed in the English-speaking world, so us stateside K-ON! fans will have to import it.

This news is certainly exciting, but I’m still holding out hope for a DS K-ON! game. In my opinion, Nintendo’s handheld system is more suited to rhythm-based musical gameplay. Plus, just think of the possibilities with the touchscreen…

Ew, not like that. Perverts. >_<

Bakacast 5 – Project K-ON!

Hey, guess what’s back! Ritsu, Shamisen and I finally got enough free time to put together another Bakacast. And…uh…this one is a bit of a doozy.

As always, you can download the episode directly, subscribe to the RSS feed or follow us on iTunes.

We start out easy with a short discussion on the possibility of J-Rock bands making their way to Rock Band before launching into a much more involved (and tangential) look at some recent poll results about Cool Japan. Oh, and I guess there’s something about a new Kyoto Animation series.

For the reviews segment, we wonder what the hell is up with Project A-Ko; and if you’ve read Ritsu’s post on the subject, you’ll have a good idea of where that conversation goes (he totally stole my Commando comparison). Also, we weigh in on the merits of K-ON!

New K-ON!! Single “Pure Pure Heart”

CD Japan’s listings have recently revealed new information about the upcoming K-ON!! single. You can preorder it here.

Pure Pure Heart
Release Date: June 2nd
Price: 1000 yen
Tracklist:
1. Pure Pure Heart
2. Sakuragaoka Joshi Kotogakko Koka (Sakura Girls High School Theme Song) [Rock Ver.]
3. Pure Pure Heart (instrumental)
4. Sakuragaoka Joshi Kotogakko Koka [Rock Ver.] (instrumental)
5. Pure Pure Heart (instrumental) [Guitar 1]
6. Pure Pure Heart (instrumental) [Guitar 2]
7. Pure Pure Heart (instrumental) [Keyboard]
8. Pure Pure Heart (instrumental) [Bass]
9. Pure Pure Heart (instrumental) [Drums]

[Via CD Japan]

The Rest of the K-ON!! Voice Actresses

Since Stilts has introduced you to Ritsu’s VA. I figured you should meet the rest of the group. Can you guess which voice actress plays which character? Mouse over each picture for the answer! More information can be found by clicking on the link below their picture.

Tsumugi Kotobuki

Minako Kotobuki

Yui Hirasawa

Aki Toyosaki

Mio Akiyama

Yōko Hikasa

Azusa Nakano

Ayana Taketatsu

Ho-kago Tea Time (4)

Ask Ritsu’s Voice Actress Your Questions

Have you ever dreamed of Ritsu saying Ripley’s classic “nuke them from orbit” line?

No? Just me?

Oh, well, in any case, if you do have something you’d like Satomi Sato to say or a question to ask her, head over to Danny Choo’s website. Choo will interview her for the debut of his new show, “Culture:Japan,” and is taking phrase-requests, questions and fanart from his audience.

Take note: the show airs on June 12, but he’ll film it on June 3. So don’t be like our favorite absentminded drummer and wait until the last minute.

K-ON!! Band Sets New Record

Hip, hip, hooray!

Not content with simply stealing the hearts of otaku, the K-ON!! girls’ newest single, “Go! Go! Maniac”, stole the top spot of Oricon’s weekly singles ranking according to ANN. “Listen!!” came in second place, because there’s apparently no such thing as overkill.

“But Stilts,” I pretend you’re asking, “who are they beating?” Good question! Looking at today’s daily rankings, the #3 slot belongs to enka-singer Fuyumi Sakamoto’s “Asia no Kaizoku/Mata Kimi ni Koi Shiteru” (“Asian Pirates/I’m in Love with You Again”). It was released over a year ago and recently climbed to the top, only to be unseated by Hokago Tea Time’s songs. And in #4 is “Mahō no Ryōri ~Kimi kara Kimi e~” (“Magical Cooking ~From You to You~”) by the curiously-named Bump of Chicken, who have done songs for video games and anime, too. It was released on April 21 and made it to the top of both the daily and weekly charts. Clearly, both songs were worthy contenders for the cultural steamroller that is K-ON!!

I’m pleasantly surprised by this development. To me, the vast majority of the songs from the first season of K-ON! were generic and forgettable J-pop tunes. When I first heard the OP and ED for the second season, I thought, “Hey, they’re actually taking risks and experimenting with different styles. Good for them!” It’s nice to see that they’ve been rewarded for their efforts.

What is your favorite Kyoto Animation series?

Is there any anime studio more polarizing than Kyoto Animation? Ever since their meteoric rise to fame with the 2006 hit series The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya,  KyoAni has been both adored and reviled by the fandom. Now we want to know what you, dear readers, think about their work. Do you have a favorite KyoAni series, or do you loathe everything they’ve done? Perhaps you simply don’t care?

Let us know by voting in the poll below, then head over to our forums for more detailed discussion!

What is your favorite Kyoto Animation series?

  • The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya (44%, 64 Votes)
  • Clannad After Story (10%, 15 Votes)
  • Full Metal Panic? Fumoffu (8%, 11 Votes)
  • Clannad (7%, 10 Votes)
  • Full Metal Panic!: The Second Raid (7%, 10 Votes)
  • K-ON! (6%, 9 Votes)
  • Kanon (5%, 8 Votes)
  • Lucky Star (5%, 8 Votes)
  • K-ON!! (5%, 8 Votes)
  • None of the above! I don't like KyoAni. (1%, 2 Votes)
  • Bah, I couldn't care less. (1%, 1 Votes)
  • Air (0%, 0 Votes)

Total Voters: 146

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