Learn Japanese with Anime: “K-On!” (Elementary Level)

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Webmaster Review

82% Brilliant

This is a school life anime with the theme of the band club which clearly depicted the youth drama. The excellence of this anime is in a youth story with a slight fever that is not in simple “moe” anime. Although their performance is not good at all, attitudes towards club activities with full effort are full of glare. Each character is also very attractive and we are able to empathize.

· Mio's tension at the first live performance
· Azusa's feelings confused by the heterogeneous space of the band club
· Yui's feelings wanting to embrace cute things
· Ritsu and Mio's sweet and sour friendship unique to any childhood friends

There are two reasons why this anime was a big hit. One is that it is a universal youth drama that everyone used to enjoy when young. Another is that there are many excellent songs "Cagayake! GIRLS", "Do not say "lazy"", and "ふわふわ時間" (ふわふわたいむ) are sung with high purity. I want you to watch this brilliant anime which established the new genre of anime (slice of life) by all means.

  • Story/Worldview 90 %
  • Character 80 %
  • Animation/Background 65 %
  • Songs/Sound 90 %
  • Originality/Enjoyment 85 %
  • User Ratings (0 Votes) 0 %

 

1. Information

K-On!

Title (Eng)K-On!
Title (Jpn)けいおん!
TypeTV
Episodes12
Aired Year2009
GenresSlice of Life
Previous
NextK-On!!

 

 

2. Synopsis

K-On!

©かきふらい・芳文社/桜高軽音部

Spring, when a new student decides a club activity to join. Tainaka Ritsu goes to see the band club with a childhood friend Akiyama Mio. However, the band club that all the members graduated is said to be abolished if four new members do not gather. After adding a friend called Kotobuki Tsumugi, they were searching for the last person. And in there, musical instrument beginner, Yui Hirasawa who had misunderstood “band club” as light music such as whistling, comes in.

 

 

3. Character’s way of Speaking

・Hirasawa Yui (平沢 唯, ひらさわ ゆい)

K-On!

©かきふらい・芳文社/桜高軽音部

She is a leisurely young girl, speaking in the way of extending endings; “xxx かなー”, “xxx だよー”. Because she is clumsy, she says a line that does not become a sentence. For example, she says “うわわわ” when she is about to fall down, or she says “あわわわ” when she is surprised. However, since her way of speaking is quite normal, it will be good for practicing Japanese listening.

 

・Akiyama Mio (秋山 澪, あきやま みお)

K-On!

©かきふらい・芳文社/桜高軽音部

She speaks in the tone of a general high school girl such as “xxx だね”, “xxx だなあ”. When she is surprised, she sometimes has a slightly sharp tone of saying “なにすんだよ!” (What do you do!). “なにすんだよ!” is an expression used with strong emotion to protest another person’s actions. “なにをするんですか” is a more calm and polite way of saying this. She also uses an ordinary way of speaking, so I would like you to make use of it in learning Japanese.

 

・Tainaka Ritsu (田井中 律, たいなか りつ)

K-On!

©かきふらい・芳文社/桜高軽音部

She is a bullish and bright girl. Basically speaking in a tone like a general girl, she talks sometimes with a boyish tone such as “xxx ぜ”, “xxx じゃねぇ”. It is actually seen in Japan actually that girls use the words of boys as a joke.

 

・Kotobuki Tsumugi (琴吹 紬, ことぶき つむぎ)

K-On!

©かきふらい・芳文社/桜高軽音部

She is raised as a lady, so she speaks in a polite tone. She frequently uses lady-like words such as “xxx ですわ”. The speed she speaks slower than other characters, and you can easily listen to her dialogue.

 

・Nakano Azusa (中野 梓, なかの あずさ)

K-On!

©かきふらい・芳文社/桜高軽音部

She is a junior in school in the characters, so she uses honorific words to the superior people. Her words are the Japanese used by popular schoolgirls, sometimes putting tsukkomi at seniors but not using things like slang. Her way of speaking is useful for you to learn Japanese especially honorific words.

 

 

4. Terms and Talking Contents

K-On!

©かきふらい・芳文社/桜高軽音部

This is an anime that girls who just entered high school formed a band club and deepen the friendship. “K-ON!” is an anime that depicts a club’s activity loosely, so you can learn Japanese while relaxing.

Because the story is not a fantasy but a day of school life, this has also a feature that there are many expressions that can be used in everyday conversation if learned as it is. You can also memorize words that are frequently used in Japanese schools, such as “入部” (にゅうぶ, to enter the club) and “廃部” (はいぶ, to abolish the club), related to club activities.

Since there are many natural tones, it becomes a reference as a way of talking when talking with girls even in a real daily scene. As their conversation includes plenty of Japanese vocabulary frequently used, even if you are a male, watching this anime is significant from the viewpoint of listening.

 

 

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はいぶ廃部club disbandment; to abolish the club
2にゅうぶ入部joining a club
3ぶいん部員club members
4ぶちょう部長head of a club
5けいおんぶ軽音部band club; 軽音部 is abbreviation for 軽音楽部
6ぶかつ部活/部活動club; 部活 is abbreviation for 部活動
7こもん顧問adviser
8がっしゅく合宿lodging together
9できたこ出来た子good girl; 出来た妹 measn a good sister
10おさななじみ幼馴染childhood friend
11ぶどうかん武道館Budokan; one of the famous stadium in Japan
12じゃずけんジャズ研Jazz club; ジャズ研 is abbreviation for ジャズ研究会
13きもだめし肝試しtest of courage
14けいれつ系列affiliate/affiliate company

 

・Difficult Term List which Can Be Useful (They come out once)

#よみ漢字Meanings
15ねいろ音色tone color; tone colour; tone quality; timbre
16てがでない手が出ないout of one’s reach; beyond one’s grasp
17かもカモduck; easy mark; sucker; sitting duck
18えづけ餌付けartificial feeding
19おひれがつく尾ひれが付くto become exaggerated (of rumours, etc.)
20くいつく食いつくto get one’s teeth into (metaphorically); to get to grips with
21ねぎる値切るto drive a bargain; to beat down the price; to haggle
22しょくぎょうびょう職業病occupational disease
23そいね添い寝sleeping together
24ちゅうかんてすと中間テストmidterm (mid-semester) test or exam
25あかてん赤点failing mark (e.g. in exam)
26ついし追試supplementary examination
27はめをはずす羽目を外すto cut loose; to act without restraint
28べっそう別荘holiday house; vacation home; villa
29こころあたり心当たりhaving in mind; happening to know of; idea
30やまやま山々(many) mountains; very much (esp. wanting to do something one cannot)
31かけもと掛け持ちholding two or more positions concurrently
32ふういんのしょ封印の書seal; 
33おしとやかお淑やかgraceful; ladylike; modest; gentle; polite; quiet; well-mannered
34いいだしっぺ言い出しっぺfirst person to say something; first person to suggest something
35こくぎ国技national sport (e.g. sumo)
36ふほんい不本意reluctant; unwilling; involuntary; unintentional
37ようしたんれい容姿端麗attractive face and figure (four character compound)
38ずのうめいせき頭脳明晰being clearheaded; having a keen (sharp, brilliant) mind
39さいきふのう再起不能being beyond recovery; having no hope of recovery
40べたベタcovering; filled in; gapless; all over
41きょううん強運good luck; very lucky
42のうてんき能天気laid-back; carefree; easygoing; thoughtless; happy-go-lucky
43けなげ健気admirable; commendable; praiseworthy; laudable; 
44やけくそヤケクソdesperate
45おせいぼお歳暮year-end gift
46かないあんぜん家内安全peace and prosperity in the household
47きょひはんのう拒否反応rejection
48ぎっくりごしギックリ腰strained back; slipped disk; lumbosacral strain
49いちりある一理ある(a) principle; (a) reason; (a) point; some truth
50かきこうしゅう夏期講習summer term course
51しつじ執事steward; butler
52ぜったいおんかん絶対音感absolute pitch; perfect pitch
53たんてい探偵detective; sleuth; investigator
54おおばんぶるまい大盤振る舞いlavish feast; splendid banquet; corporate largess; lavish hospitality
55くちうつし口移しmouth-to-mouth feeding
56まんがいち万が一if by any chance; just in case; in the worst case
57できん出禁ban on entering a building, venue, etc.
58うめあわせ埋め合わせcompensation

 


6. Elementary can Learn Japanese with This Anime

K-On!

©かきふらい・芳文社/桜高軽音部

A variety of somewhat difficult terms come out in the comedy part of Boke and Tsukkomi, but most of everyday conversation part is plain Japanese. Therefore, it is easy to listen as a whole, it is the best anime to learn everyday conversation of high school girls in Japanese. If you note that a difficult term appears only in comedy parts, you can easily watch it. I recommend this anime to elementary level learners.

 

Difficult Terms Occurrence Rate4.8 terms/episode= 58 / 12
Difficulty Level12th grade= Middle School
Total Difficulty Score57.6 points= 4.8 * 12
   
Comprehensive JudgmentEasy= 30.0 to 69.9 points
Recommended Japanese LearnerElementary 
JLPTN4 

 

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