Learn Japanese with Anime: “Lucky Star” (Elementary Level)

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Webmaster Review

82% Brilliant

This is a famous anime that caused a social phenomenon in Japan. Washimiya Shrine, one of the scenes, has more than 100,000 visitors annually, and the theme song's CD sales exceed 200,000.

The story consists of 24 episodes with a theme of a certain everyday typical story. There are many parodies of various anime including Haruhi. You can see it fun till the end. I think that the ending was also good. The main 4 girls are also fascinating enough, but all of the characters around them are also very attractive.

Regarding the theme song "もってけ!セーラーふく", the lyrics are unknown, but the melody bears a certain familiarity and it will play on loop in your head once you listen to it. There is something attractive that does not make a sound, but remind you of the world view of "Lucky Star".

Although this kind of slice-of-life anime is often seen as having only "moe" elements without contents, this anime was different. The balance of real everyday and "moe" elements is wonderful, and it is a highly rated brilliant anime as a whole.

  • Story/Worldview 75 %
  • Character 90 %
  • Animation/Background 75 %
  • Songs/Sound 85 %
  • Originality/Enjoyment 85 %
  • User Ratings (1 Votes) 100 %

 

1. Information

Lucky Star

Title (Eng)Lucky Star
Title (Jpn)らき☆すた
TypeTV
Episodes24
Aired Year2007
GenresComedy, Slice of Life
Previous
NextLucky Star OVA (Original Visual to Animation)

 

 

2. Synopsis

Lucky Star

(C)美水かがみ/らっきー☆ぱらだいす

It is a high school girl in daily life which is an otaku girl “Izumi Konata” and an ordinary girl “Hiiragami Kami” who feeds Konata’s lines. This is a novel work that depicts the loose and funny everyday life of high school student girls. This anime shows people’s ordinary life depicting relatable events that you would be familiar and say “oh, that happens to me too!”

 

 

3. Character’s way of Speaking

・Izumi Konata (泉 こなた, いずみ こなた)

Lucky Star

(C)美水かがみ/らっきー☆ぱらだいす

She basically speaks with a laid back tone, “xxx だ”, “xxx よ”. When she gets excited or there is something she wishes to do, she may be quick in a long sentence. Also, she frequently uses geek terms such as “Moe” (adjective to express interest or excited feelings).

There are many elements of geeks in the content of her conversation. Therefore, there are many scenes difficult to understand without knowledge of subculture. It is difficult for all Japanese people to understand everything. Therefore, you do not have to worry if you can’t catch her maniac conversation content.

 

・Hiiragi Tsukasa (柊 つかさ, ひいらぎ つかさ)

Lucky Star

(C)美水かがみ/らっきー☆ぱらだいす

Like Konata, she also speaks with a relaxed tone, such as “xxx よ”. She calls Konata “Kona-chan” with a nickname. “xxx chan” is a nickname that gets after the girl’s name in Japan.

Normally it should be “Konata-chan”, but part of the name “Kona-chan” is omitted. Omitting a name makes them feel cute and familiar.

 

・Hiiragi Kagami (柊 かがみ, ひいらぎ かがみ)

Lucky Star

(C)美水かがみ/らっきー☆ぱらだいす

She is Tsukasa’s twin old sister, but her tone is stronger than Tsukasa. She sometimes speaks in a tone like an order like “ちょっと待て!” (ちょっとまて, Wait a moment!).

Kagami is in charge of the role of Tsukkomi. Tsukkomi is a role to point out that “It is doubt or strange” in a conversation that is in doubt or a contradictory conversation. Kagami’s “ちょっと待て!” includes the meaning to point out the funny part of it before.

 

・Takara Miyuki (高良 みゆき, たから みゆき)

Lucky Star

(C)美水かがみ/らっきー☆ぱらだいす

She speaks like a lady. In Japanese, there are things called “role words” like lady’s words. A role language is a stereotypical way of speaking that “people of such status or role will speak in these words”.

Although it is a role word that appears frequently in Japanese anime work, it is sometimes different from the tone that the actual Japanese speaks. Also, she has features that speak very long and difficult lines.

Although she speaks a long line because of her abundant knowledge, many specialized words appear in its contents, and even Japanese people can not understand the contents perfectly and easily. Therefore, even if you do not fully understand what she says, you do not have to get disappointed.

 

 

4. Terms and Talking Contents

Lucky Star, Yukata, 浴衣

(C)美水かがみ/らっきー☆ぱらだいす

This anime mainly shows casual everyday conversations among high school students. At first glance, it seems like suitable for beginners in learning Japanese because there are also many lines at slow speed. However, it is difficult to fully understand by just watching this anime once, such as Konata’s geeky talk and Miyuki’s long lines. In order to understand and enjoy the contents of the conversation in this anime, it is necessary to have knowledge related to Japanese subculture. In terms of studying Japanese, this anime is for over Elementary level learners (or intermediate level).

 

 

5. Difficult Term List (You should prepare for them before watching)

・Difficult Term List which You Must Know (They come out more than twice)
#よみ漢字Meanings
1いちやづけ一夜漬けlast-minute cramming; overnight cramming
2もえ萌えcaptivating
3ぎゃるげーギャルゲーcomputer game for men featuring beautiful women characters
4ねとげネトゲonline game; ネトゲ is abbreviation for ネットゲーム
5こみけコミケComic Market; コミケ is abbreviation for コミックマーケット
6おたくオタクGeek; オタ is abbreviation for オタク
7じゅよう需要demand; this is a geek term in this work (boy’s demand to girls)
8みせいねん未成年minor; not of age
9るいともるいとも[Proverb] birds of a feather flock together; るいとも is abbreviation for 類は友を呼ぶ
10じゅけん受験taking an examination
11じゅけんせい受験生student preparing for or taking examinations
12かきこうしゅう夏期講習summer period course for taking examinations
13どうじん同人Fanzine; 同人 is abbreviation for 同人誌
14てつや徹夜staying up all night


・Difficult Term List which Can Be Useful (They come out once)
#よみ漢字Meanings
15はぶられるはぶられるto be left out
16やくみ薬味condiment (e.g. grated or chopped topping such as daikon, wasabi, ginger, green onion, red pepper)
17まるうつし丸写しcopying in entirety (verbatim)
18びょうけつ病欠absence on account of illness
19おきべん置き勉leaving all your textbooks, etc., at school
20ごがつびょう五月病blues experienced by college freshmen or workplace recruits shortly after beginning school or work; the May blues
21にらめっこにらめっこstaring-out (down) game; game in which two children looking at each other try to make the opponents laugh first
22ほんぺん本編original story; original version
23むねをかす胸を貸すto allow a less skilled person to practice with one (esp. in sumo)
24けんしょう懸賞offering a prize; prize competition
25いちらんせいそうせいじ一卵性双生児identical twins
26にらんせいそうせいじ二卵性双生児fraternal twins
27もほうはん模倣犯copycat criminal
28へんさち偏差値deviation value (usu. scaled to mean of 50, standard deviation of 10, and often used for academic grades)
29まえやく前厄the year before a critical age; the year before an inauspicious year
30ほんやく本厄critical year in one’s life; inauspicious year
31おりづめ折詰a box(ed)
32ふきょう布教propagation (e.g. a religion), anime propagation (konata meaning)
33はくがく博学erudition; extensive learning
34みからでたさび身から出た錆paying for one’s mistakes; getting one’s just deserts
35しょうねんし少年誌a boys’ magazine
36せきずいはんしゃ脊髄反射spinal reflex
37いっきいちゆう一喜一憂now rejoicing, now worrying; swinging from joy to sorrow
38かみつく噛みつく(歯向かう)to strike back at; to bite back
39せつど節度moderation; standard
40ねおち寝落ちdozing off in the middle of doing something
41はめをはずす羽目を外すto cut loose; to act without restraint
42いんそつ引率leading; guiding; commanding
43ひとばしら人柱human pillar; human sacrifice
44ばんこん晩婚late marriage
45きこん既婚married
46ゆうきゅう有給vacation; (paid) holiday
47ぼこう母校alma mater
48すいもあまいも酸いも甘いもthe bitter and the sweet (to be experienced in the ways of the world)
49みずをさす水を差すto estrange (people); to pour water (into); to hinder
50いいだしっぺ言い出しっぺfirst person to say something; first person to suggest something
51まんねりマンネリbecoming stereotyped; getting stuck in a rut
52いきぬき息抜きtaking a breather; relaxation; vent hole
53るいはともをよぶ類は友を呼ぶ[Proverb] birds of a feather flock together
54つめのあかをせんじてのむ爪の垢を煎じて飲むto take a lesson from (a wise person)
55ろうばししん老婆心concern
56さちがうすい幸が薄いill-starred
57そうけい早計over hasty; rash; premature
58ごびゅう誤謬mistake; error
59きもにめいじる肝に銘じるto be deeply impressed; to take to heart
60じつだん実弾ive bullets; live ammunition; ball cartridge
61さんがにち三が日first three days of the New Year (January 1st to 3rd)
62ごごうめ五合目(富士山)Mt. Fuji’s fifth station
63めざとい目ざといsharp sighted
64しけたつらしけた面a boared look on your face
65やぶからぼうに藪から棒にunexpectedly; out of the blue
66きしゅへん機種変to upgrade to a new mobile phone (shorten “機種変更”)
67事実は小説より奇なり[Proverb] truth is stranger than fiction
68おとながい大人買いbuying a large amount (esp. of collectible items aimed at kids, such as manga)
69できあい溺愛infatuation; adoration; blind love
70みもふたもない身も蓋もないpoint blank; blunt
71ふるかぶ古株old-timer; veteran; senior; old stump; old roots
72たいきばんせい大器晩成Great talents mature late
73くろうがしのばれる苦労が偲ばれるto think of one’s hardships
74じょうそうきょういく情操教育cultivation of aesthetic sensibility; education in good taste
75もてあそぶもてあそぶto toy with (one’s emotions, etc.)
76さげすみさげすみcontempt
77じちょう自重not acting rashly; taking care of oneself
78ぜったいりょういき絶対領域[anime slang]exposed skin between top of knee-high socks and hemline of skirt
79へたのよこずき下手の横好きloving something but being very bad at it
80しんずい神髄essence; quintessence; spirit; soul; heart; pith; pith and marrow
81ぜんしょ善処dealing appropriately (with a situation); taking proper measures
82いちごいちえ一期一会once-in-a-lifetime encounter (hence should be cherished as such)
83こたいさ個体差individual difference
84かおにどろをぬる顔に泥を塗るto bring disgrace (dishonor, dishonour) on; to fling mud at
85てうちにする手打ちにするstriking a deal; coming to an agreement
86おとさたない音沙汰ないno news; no letter
87あんばい塩梅condition; state; situation


6. Elementary can Learn Japanese with This Anime

Lucky Star

(C)美水かがみ/らっきー☆ぱらだいす

Since topics contain many comedy elements, various kinds of terms emerge and the difficulty level of terms and conversation is high: 16th grade. In addition, since there are many parody elements, understanding the Japanese used is not easy unless you know the original. For example, “マンモスうれぴー”, “よっこいしょういち”, “テモテー”, “でもそんなのかんけーねー” and so on.

Listening to their daily conversations obediently helps your Japanese learning because difficult terms occurrence rate is low: 3.5 terms/episode. However, since it is necessary to judge whether it is a difficult term or not, I would like to recommend this to over Elementary level learners.

 

Difficult Terms Occurrence Rate3.6 terms/episode= 87 / 24
Difficulty Level16th grade= University
Total Difficulty Score57.6 points= 3.6 * 16
   
Comprehensive JudgmentEasy= 30.0 to 69.9 points
Recommended Japanese LearnerElementary 
JLPTN4 

 

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