Saturday, February 11, 2012

Watching K-On! Episode 9 – “New Club Member!”

Having joined the Light Music club, new member Azusa is shocked to find its members do not appear to be as committed to their musicianship as she had expected.
  • From this episode onward, the opening title sequence has been altered to include shots featuring Azusa. Some shots that existed in the original version have also been altered to include her. Also, “Cagayake!GIRLS” now has a new guitar subtly added to it – this is the “5 version” found on the “Band Yarou Yo!!” Band Score CD.
  • Ritsu gets hit on the head once (for suggesting they blackmail Azusa into staying).
  • The seniors play “Watashi no Koi wa Hotchkiss” for Azusa.
Manga comparison:
4-koma chapters two, three and four from the second volume are combined to make up the storyline of this episode. The anime follows the manga very closely here, almost reciting it line by line (though a small section is taken out of the original club room setting and set at a picnic instead). The only real significant addition is the “drama” near the end of the episode, where Azusa considers quitting the club.
OST tracks used:
  • Genki! - 0:00-0:27
  • Juugo-sai no March - 3:15-4:12
  • Happy languidness - 4:29-5:29
  • Jajauma Sannin Musume - 6:04-6:33
  • The other side of evening sun - 6:57-7:13
  • Kawaii Inbou - 7:44-8:38
  • Cotton candy - 8:53-9:45
  • Pinch Daisuki! - 10:47-11:17
  • Kendama-kun - 11:18-11-22
  • My hometown where it snows - 11:31-11:42
  • Crepe wa Ikaga? - 12:17-13:14
  • Doki Doki Friday night - 13:57-15:21
  • Reason that doesn't develop - 15:49-16:18
  • Patrol of stroll - 17:44-18:12
  • Hesitation - 18:12-20:01
My take:
The origin of “Azunyan” and the beginning of Azusa’s integration into the Light Music Club. Obviously, this is a very significant episode, and a thoroughly enjoyable one too. The suddenly-drama-at-the-end! fell flat for me, though, and didn’t really achieve the level of emotion it obviously aimed for. It does work a little bit better watching it again now as a fan who has already seen the entire series. However, I think that says more about the series ability to make the viewer feel attached to the characters over time than it does about the merits of that particular scene.
The more successful parts of the episode are the fun ones. Yui freaking out at Azusa’s unexpected skill level, Ritsu doing Mio’s inner monologue, Sawako’s intense reaction to Azusa’s playing guitar for a mere fraction of a second during tea time. Good stuff.

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