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K-On! – Memories will always stay

Saturday, August 24, 2019 / No Comments

I am sure that most of you readers and those in the anime community are aware of the tragic incident that affected KyoAni a few weeks ago. KyoAni had produced a plethora of anime that brought joy and touched the lives of many around the world.

This article is not a review but rather a personal and heartfelt tribute to my favourite anime from KyoAni, K-On!. There will be three sections, a list of my favourite songs from K-On!, a letter to the main characters and finally a letter of support to KyoAni. I will not be touching on the plot of K-On! in this article but if I could describe it in a sentence it would be: Cute girls playing music and doing cute things. Do let me know who is your favourite character in K-On! and which songs you like too!

If you wish to read more about K-On!, you might want to read fellow writer J.Fluffysheep’s articles here: 1, 2, 3, 4 (Credit to J.Fluffysheep). 

Favourite Songs from K-On!

1. Tenshi ni Fureta yo

This is my favourite song from K-On!. The song was featured in episode 24 of the second season. It was played by Yui, Mio, Ritsu and Mugi specially for Azusa after their graduation ceremony. I remember clearly how much I cried during that episode and listening to this song hits me in the feels every time. Seeing Azusa cry and telling her senpais to please not graduate was too much for my heart. Like everyone else, I did not want Yui and the rest to graduate but as they say, all good things must come to an end. The good news is that Yui, Mio, Ritsu and Mugi all made it to the same college. Let us hope that Azusa will be able to enter the same college as them in the future so that we can have more Ho-kago (After School) Tea Time moments.

2. U&I

U&I is the first song written by Yui, who managed to get inspiration for the lyrics when her younger sister Ui fell sick. Although Ui is the younger sister, she is always taking care of her older sister and is much more mature in comparison to Yui. Yui told the girls in the Light Music Club that she wanted to convey the feeling of realising the importance of a truly valuable thing only after she lost it and thus wrote this song. U&I was performed at the third high school festival. It is the last school festival for the third years in the Light Music Club before their graduation. I like the beat of U&I the most out of all of the songs in K-On!. 

3. Fude Pen Boru Pen

Duet version, Mio with Yui

Second school festival version (Mio)

Fude Pen Boru Pen was sung by Mio for the second high school festival performance although Yui is the lead vocalist. It is the Light Music Club’s second song and Ho-kago Tea Time’s first original ever since Azusa joined the club. Unfortunately, Yui left her guitar, Giita, at home and rushed back to retrieve it, hence did not participate in this song. There are different versions of this song such as the duet version with Mio and Yui as well as the second school festival version, the Mio solo version. I love this song so much especially the duet version because I think Yui and Mio’s voices perfectly complement each other. Fude Pen Boru Pen is a very cheerful and energetic song, one of Ho-kago Tea Time’s best in my opinion.

4. Fuwa Fuwa Time

Yui version

First school festival version (Mio with hoarse voice Yui)

Fuwa Fuwa Time is the song written by Mio Akiyama for the first high school festival performance and also the Light Music Club’s first ever original. It was sung by Mio during the first school festival because Yui had lost her voice a few days before the performance while practicing with Sawa-Chan Sensei. Yui sang this song at the second school festival when she barely made it back after retrieving Giita. Fuwa Fuwa Time is a really catchy song and easily one of my favourites. There are also different versions of this song such as Yui as the lead vocalist, Mio as the lead vocalist or a duet with both of them. I like the Yui version and the first school festival version where Mio is the lead vocalist together with Yui’s hoarse voice. Yui’s hoarse voice is so cute, I love it to bits. 

Letter to Main Characters

To Hirasawa Yui:

Yui with Giita

Yui: Make-up kiss!

Yui: Ui’s homemade soba noodle is delicious

I love strawberries

Dear Yui,

You are such a silly goofball but that is why I love you so. You never fail to bring a smile to my face with your funny actions and expressions. I adore your honest and straightforward personality; you are true to yourself and say whatever is on your mind without fear of repercussions. The look of joy when you first bought Giita made me feel warm and fuzzy inside. I also smiled when you told Azusa you chose Giita because you thought it was cute. I find it amazing that you were able to learn the guitar so quickly, I hope you realise how innately talented you are. I could not help but burst out laughing when you said you treat your guitar well by sleeping with it and dressing it up. I love how you are always beaming with confidence and never afraid to try new things. I like how you always take challenges in your stride and lighten the mood in the Light Music Club, you are such an angel. Despite your forgetfulness and low attention span, I love the fact that you are always doing your best for the Light Music Club and Ho-kago Tea Time. My favourite cake is the same as yours, strawberry shortcake is the greatest. Yui, you will always be my best girl, you are so precious. 

To Mio Akiyama:

Angry Mio: Starting tomorrow, we need to start practicing seriously!

I am not nervous at all

I am not scared

Dear Mio,

Did anyone mention to you that you become really cute when you are scared, shy or angry? I know it took you a lot of courage to step on stage during the first high school festival to replace Yui as the lead vocalist, bravo Mio! I also find it really funny that you sealed away the performance video because of the incident at the end. I like how you and Azusa keep the girls in check when they just want to laze around. You are the much-needed disciplinarian who ensures that they get sufficient practice. You are so popular that you even have your own fan club in school. I could not contain my laughter when you passed out upon learning that you were given the lead role as Romeo in your class’s play. I love your tsundere attitude towards Ritsu as well, you two were made for each other.

To Ritsu Tainaka:

The two comedians in the club

Dear Ritsu,

Thank you so much for keeping the Light Music Club alive. The Light Music Club would have been defuncted and there would be no Ho-kago Tea Time without you. Please remember to fill in the forms for the school festivals though, you are the president after all. I think that you are really suited for playing the drums as you are always so energetic. I like how you make the club fun by telling funny jokes and acting silly. I love your jealous behaviour when Mio got closer to Nodoka, it was really cute. I like that you are adventurous such as recommending Ho-kago Tea Time to try for a live house gig when you heard from a friend. Mio says some embarrassing words at times and I love the way you get shy after listening. You and Yui make a good combination as the club’s comedic duo. 

To Tsumugi Kotobuki:

Mugi with Ritsu at the dagashi shop

Mugi working her part-time job

Dear Mugi,

You are such a sweet girl, always trying your best to make everyone happy. You are always cheerful and your positive energy is constantly radiating. I am sure the girls are very grateful for what you have done for them. You lent your expensive tea-set to the Light Music Club, always make tea and snacks for the girls, helped Yui get Giita at a cheaper price and even let the girls use your villas for the training camps. I also want to try your tea and cakes, they always look so delicious. Come to think of it, you are the reason Sawa-Chan sensei gave the girls the band name Ho-kago Tea Time. You are always humble and helpful despite being a wealthy ojou-sama. I love that you just want to be an ordinary girl like your peers, eating yakisoba, dagashi and playing at the arcade. I like how you took up a part-time job at a fast food restaurant, it shows that you are mature which is usually uncharacteristic of ojou-samas.

To Azusa Nakano:

Yui: I’ve decided that your nickname is Azu-nyan

Azusa loves anything sweet, from cakes to taiyaki


Dear Azu-nyan,

You are one of the most mature member in the club despite being the youngest and newest, I am so proud of you. I love how fierce you can get towards the other girls when you want to start practice while they just want tea and snacks. Did I mention that Yui petting you on the head is the cutest thing ever? I know you love Mugi’s sweets a lot and I hope she will occasionally bring you some after she graduates. I agree with Sawa-Chan sensei that cat ears really suit you with your hairstyle. I laughed when Yui gave you the nickname Azu-nyan after seeing you in cat ears. I was worried that you will be lonely once Yui and the rest graduate but it looks like you have found new members for the Light Music Club. You are even the leader of your new group Wakaba Girls, very impressive. Goodluck President Azu-nyan, I am sure you will take the club to greater heights! 

Letter of Support to KyoAni:

Dear KyoAni,

Your works have touched the lives of many and helped some get through dark times. Similarly, everyone around the world including the Milkcananime team will be praying for and supporting you during this dark period. I am positive that your esteemed animation studio will bounce back stronger than ever and continue to produce anime that will always be embedded in our memories like your past works. K-On! will forever be one of my favourite anime, the memories will always stay.

Written by Kou

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A Second Letter To Mikorin

Thursday, February 26, 2015 / No Comments

Dear Mikorin,

It's been quite a while since my last letter to you. Ogenki desuka? Firstly, a big congratulations on having your own cover art in the latest release of Gekkan Shoujo Nozaki-kun! You look so arrogant...I mean, cool posing with those boxed figurines. A closer glance yields a bigger surprise - your friends and acquaintances have turned into those figurines! Let's see...there's Nozaki-kun (Ume) donning a pair of bunny ears and looking just as dashing. Kashima, Chiyo and Yuzuki form the Romance Girls trio over what looks suspiciously (?) like a bar of chocolate. I mean, that looks awfully like Toberone. Maybe I'm subconsciously craving for some chocolate. Anyway, Wakamatsu and Hori-senpai also have their very own figurines which more or less sums up the entire gang...erm, why is your face reddening? Oh, I beg your pardon. Nope, I haven't forgotten about you Mikorin. Yeah, I know...I'm getting there! Yeah, even Miyamae has a figurine complete with a tanuki. Okay, let me just sort out some things.

The sixth tankoubon of Gekkan Shoujo Nozaki-kun has another surprise which is also related to you. Relax, I'm getting there. The Special Limited Edition comes with an actual (yeah actual) boxed figurine of...YOU! Yeah, like I said I haven't forgotten about this biggest surprise which I honestly didn't expect would be available over here. You see, according to the series' official website and such, your figurine had to be pre-ordered online through the available platforms. As I don't reside in Japan, I didn't think that I would be able to buy one as a lot of manga and anime-related merchandise are domestic only. Imagine my shock (yeah I was shocked) and eventual excitement when I stumbled upon the Special Limited Edition at Books Kinokuniya! I knew right away that I simply had to get it. So thank you, Mikorin...for crossing the international waters!

Your figurine stands at only 10 centimetres. Nope, I'm not really complaining since every detail has been finely incorporated into the design. The strikingly beautiful red hair, the little studs that you wear on both ears, the never buttoned-up uniform, the red tee (for the figurine it's a Tanupon!), long pants, shoes...bunny ears and a tail. The little plastic platform bears a tanuki and your name together with the series' title. However, I can't quite comprehend the facial expression - are you supposed to look aloof or something? Angry? "Argh!! I'm so pissed off right now!! PULL!!!" No? Anyway, I love the overall design and its implied statement, if any. Yes, it is also very cute. You can stop pouting now.

Oh, I just realised that there is a second cover featuring Nozaki-kun and his younger brother Mayu. Is that supposed to be the normal edition? Well, that isn't really important. There is a little colour insert which includes a special conversation between Nozaki-kun and Kurosaki Mafuyu, who is the protagonist of Oresama Teacher (another series by Tsubaki Izumi). The back pages also feature a step-by-step explanation of how your figurine came about, and a couple of comic strips! I must say that this is one hell of a combo! I'm so glad to have stumbled upon the Special Limited Edition. While I don't really collect figurines and such, I do welcome your addition to my...table.  

I wish you well. Ogenki de.

Eccentrically Yours.

Written by J.Fluffysheep ♪

A Letter To Yumeno-sensei

Sunday, July 13, 2014 / No Comments

Dear Yumeno-sensei,

Ogenki desuka? It's taken me a lot of procrastination to finally get down and dedicate this letter to you. I've been following your amazingly brilliant manga 'Let's Have A Romance!' since its highly anticipated debut in the magazine 'Monthly Girls' Romance'. Mamiko and Suzuki-kun are so much in love with each other. I really like the spread of delicate details that you put in both characters. Very often, I would easily lose myself in their world while flipping those pages. The little bicycle episode between them is just romantic! That reminds me, some time ago while walking home from school, I passed by this odd couple that had been cycling rather aggressively along the street. I'm not quite the fitness fanatic, but perhaps they were trying out some fancy bicycle routine to help burn the extra calories or something. Both of them looked so dead serious! Anyway, do you like cycling?

A few friends and I have dreams of becoming comic artists, but we have also come to terms with our lack of flair. Was it your childhood dream to draw manga and make a living out of it? Were you ever rejected by any publisher? A classmate used to tell me this story of her neighbour who would submit a ton of manuscripts faithfully to different publishers, yet so far none of her work has been given the nod of approval. To hone her craft and make ends meet, she is currently an assistant to Aito Yuuki, the mangaka of 'Hajiratte Cafe Latte'. I wonder if you guys are acquainted?

Recently, a friend of mine has been feeling out of sorts but he refuses to tell me what happened when probed. In addition, he frequently suffers from bruises and black eyes during basketball club practices. As a spectator, unfortunately I'm not quite spared either. There is this particular crazy girl from second year who regularly joins the basketball team in their sessions even though she isn't a member. Nobody knows why she invites herself to specifically torture my friend. Some of us have long suspected that she might be having a crush on our friend. Of course, our friend has remained oblivious to such things. He simply thinks that the crazy girl just finds pleasure in torturing him. Oh, and he scared us by saying that he wanted an X-Acto knife! Gosh, why does he even need an X-Acto knife? He isn't the artsy type to begin with! Well, maybe deep inside he has always wanted to dabble in the arts. Perhaps you could offer some word of encouragement to him, friend is called Wakamatsu Hirotaka. you think it would be better to refrain him from getting the knife? A friend just told me that Wakamatsu might be using it 'differently'...

Anyway, pardon the digression. I'm wondering if it would be possible to request an autograph from you? I've heard that someone in our school's Art Club had the honour of meeting you and getting your autograph. I understand that you are extremely busy, so I'm just going to keep my fingers crossed. 

Thank you for your time. I hope that I would be able to meet you in person someday. Until then. Ogenki de.

Eccentrically Yours.

Written by J.Fluffysheep ♪

A Letter To Wakako

Thursday, August 27, 2015 / No Comments

Dear Wakako,

Ogenki desuka? It was such great pleasure sharing a counter with you the other evening. Oh, you probably wouldn't have a clue; I wasn't exactly a physical presence in the izakaya. Before you start hurling that expensive sake anywhere, I just have a colourful imagination. Now, would you kindly remain seated, and let me tell you a few things. Quite unfortunately, this wouldn't be a two, three-minute segment unlike the anime adaptation of your after-work indulgences. Why couldn't people just serve up longer episodes of gastronomy, fictional or otherwise? Oops, pardon me. I suppose that I should be more grateful. Shall I continue? Thanks.

You have beautiful eyes. Yeah, I mean it. Your creator has done such a splendid job on those lovely things. They remind me of a cat's eyes. Beautiful and mysterious. Okay, I should probably divert to another subject before you waste that expensive sake on some innocent customer. For the last time, I like to imagine things now and then. Okay, shall we revisit the first dish which you had in the anime: Sake no Shioyaki? 

Yeah, I agree that the salmon skin tastes superb, especially with a simple seasoning like salt. The taste buds would just open up freely and absorb the rest of the flavours! I love grilled salmon just as much as eating it raw off a conveyor belt. Hmm, I have never had my grilled salmon with grated daikon before. I should probably try that combination someday! And have a glass of sake to go along as well.

Oh, I see that you love your fried chicken too. The ones from fastfood restaurants aside, I enjoy the different flavours in kara-age. I mostly have mine in a bento set though. Do you take yours with mayonnaise? Some eateries squrt a small dollop next to the side, and it looks really mouth-watering! Hmm, come to think of it, kara-age seems to complement quite a lot of dishes like ramen, soba, rice...okay, I'm salivating!

Hmm, I don't think that I would ever dare to try sea urchin and watercress in butter. I'm fine with watercress in broth though. Sea urchin sounds really dangerous, and I'm not exactly a fan of exotic seafood or whatever that slimy thing is called. Oh, the monkfish liver looks really enticing though! I could handle a fish dish more comfortably. And that portion is huge! I have eaten clams before, though not steamed in sake but pan-fried with chili. Hmm, I should really get hold of some sake!  

Ah, the simple yet uplifting Potato Salad! Yours had actually come with a boiled egg! Hmm, mine is usually served with bacon, green onion, butter...okay, I don't really know what goes into most potato salads but the flavours are definitely refreshing. Yeah, they are easy on the stomach too! Shiawase...

Gomen ne, I hope that I haven't overwhelmed you too much with this letter. I just want to express my love for your stories in a different way. I suppose that it would be a lot more fulfilling and ideal to read the manga since those two-minute episodes simply aren't enough. Anyway, I'm looking forward to the rest of your food and drink adventures! Ogenki de.

Eccentrically Yours.

Written by J.Fluffysheep ♪

A Third Letter To Sakamichi

Wednesday, April 1, 2015 / No Comments

Dear Sakamichi-kun,

Ogenki desuka? You have definitely become much stronger since my previous letter to you. The deafening cries that erupted following the long-awaited passing of the goal - the one and only which many teams have bled, sweated and teared for - resonated with me just as profoundly even though I was watching the race at the comfort of my room. Promises are easy to make, yet difficult to realise. The burning desire to bring each jersey past the finishing line could only be fulfilled by one person - the ultimate Winner - and I'm elated and proud that he is none other than you, Team Sohoku #176 - Onoda Sakamichi! Congratulations, you have brought the team's jersey across the Inter-High. No other words seem able to describe that moment, but your shout of victory has done it. The remaining ounce of energy boosted your trembling hands as the three-day tournament came to an end. Well-done!

You have continued to lend weight as Team Sohoku's pillar of support through many physical and mental obstacles. I must have said that to you countless times, but I'm sure your friends and seniors will agree on just how strong an impact your presence has triggered over those three days. The inner climbing monster is merely a starter for the relentless pursuit manifested through sheer determination and such is what truly ignites the force which puts out the rest of the opponents. I'm certain that you and Manami will become much closer after this race. After all, he seems like the only person among the rival teams who doesn't go around cracking kunckles while looking to bite people's heads off. Well, that is more of a figurative remark but in my heart, your initial encounter with Manami has already laid out the essential foundation of a long-lasting friendship. I don't think that there would ever be a second sight like that - you and Manami were genuinely smiling at each other at the end of the race. Most people would probably resemble dead fishes.

The winners' platform may only be 15 centimetres tall, but echoing what the seniors have said, the greatest height there is. I have to say though that I was a little taken aback by Makishima-senpai's out-of-character emotional outburst as the team stood proudly with the winner's cup and bouquet. Even Kinjou-senpai and Tadokoro-senpai couldn't believe what they had seen! Well, I suppose that a little off-tune (?) is acceptable. It was nice of Team Hakone Gakuen to applaud you guys. For a second, Manami was still feeling a little lost (absolutely no pun intended). But we all know that he will be fine!

Oh, while I wasn't expecting that cycling trip with Team Sohoku to Akihabara, I did realise that it actually tied in to what you had wished for right at the beginning of the series - you had wanted to visit Akihabara with your friends. Even though there was still a difference, it wasn't a glaring one at least. The seniors' awkwardness throughout the trip was refreshingly hilarious! I was moved by your little but powerful confession at the end. Yeah, you have indeed come a long way. From an otaku to a full-fledged road racer demands a lot of sacrifices, but you have managed to pull through all the obstacles with your trademark smile. Please keep smiling for yourself and Team Sohoku. Every team needs somebody like you!

If there ever would be a third season, I would most definitely root for Team Sohoku again! Meanwhile, I shall miss you guys really badly. Take care, and thank you.

Eccentrically Yours.

Written by J.Fluffysheep ♪