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Headscratchers: K-On!
  • If Mugi was the one who originally wanted to join the Chorus Club, then why the lack of her singing in the show? Her character has quite a nice voice, too.
    • She does sing that verb mnemonic turtle song in Season 2 Episode 8, but as for singing in the band, in Season 1 Episode 5, she declines as she wouldn't be able to handle singing and playing the keyboard at the same time. Sure, her voice actresses wouldn't have to be the ones to play keyboard for her, but...
  • Why does Mio only write "love" focused lyrics mentioning a love interest? It isn't like she has experienced love...or maybe she has? I can only come to the conclusion that she is currently in love. And if so, with whom?
    • Since there are no boys around, she may have a thing for one of the other girls. Ritsu could qualify, although at one point Mio expresses that she'd really love to hang out with Mugi. Since the levels of Les Yay go up and down constantly it is hard to tell.
    • She's just fantasizing. That's why her lyrics are so pure.
      • If she had been in a romance before, chances are she'd be much more cynical about it. Considering how high school romances go...
    • Songs don't have to be personal, and there are a lot of love songs out there already, which likely inspired Mio to write similar lyrics.
  • Why doesn't anybody talk to Mio after she changes class? Hadn't she become very popular, fanclub and all?
    • When the president of the fan club is also the Student Council President, you do expect the members to be more... secretive.
    • We're talking about the first two minutes of the new school year here. Even without Nodoka, there's a good chance people would have started to talk with her before the end of the day, but Mio being Mio, she starts panicking straight away...
    • It's starting to bug me that a lot of K-ON! fanfic authors don't understand how classes work in a Japanese high school: you have an assigned seat, in an assigned classroom, and you stay in the SAME seat, in the SAME room, with the SAME people, ALL DAY, ALL YEAR. It's the teachers who move from room to room for different classes. The only opportunity students have to talk to their friends in another class is to go to their classroom during lunch breaks (like Kagami frequently does in Lucky Star.) This is absolutely crucial to understanding why Mio reacts the way she does! Maybe we need a Useful Notes article about this...
      • This is not a fixed law and some Japanese schools do it the other way around. It's also not like you can have proper talks, even if you have to change classes yourself. The original question also didn't apply to Mio's understandably panicky response, but to the fact that she gets mostly ignored.
    • Most of Mio's fans are a year or two younger than her. Yui specifically point out a classmate in their year who attends the fanclub tea party, and the other girls react with surprise. Even so, most of her fanclub seems to not approach her directly, and they're also aware that she's very shy, so perhaps a mix of being too embarrassed to say anything to her, and possibly thinking that she'd go Shrinking Violet on them leads them to not say anything to her.
  • Also, bands don't decide who will do the vocals the minute before a concert.
    • A possible explanation might be the Genius Ditz nature of everyone in the club.
  • Generally, one should avoid sprinting home and back to school after having a brain-frying fever. Couldn't someone else have gone?
    • But with anyone but Yui out of the picture, who could've played? Yui clearly can't play any guitar outside her own Les Yay— Les Paul.
      • Sawa-chan has a car, which could have considerably reduced the time needed to get the guitar; and Azusa had learned Yui's part, so she could have taken her place for the first song. In fact, Yui could even have managed the vocals.
  • How the hell are a bunch of school students able to afford big name brand instruments such as the Gibson Les Paul, Fender Jazz Bass (left handed version) and Fender Mustang, a drumkit and all the assorted gear such as amps and mic's with no disposable income to speak of and a budget of zero?
    • Mugi is very, very rich, not to mention the daughter of the owner of the (chain of) music shop(s) the girls shop at. In one extremely funny instance, she bullies persuades the employee into selling the Les Paul to Yui for much less than its normal price.
      • The girls owned most of their equipment before the band was even started, other equipment, like the amps, came from the school music room. It wouldn't be a good music room if it didn't have stock equipment. The only instrument purchased was the Les Paul (Mentioned above). Also, they inflated their budget by selling a collectible guitar.
      • Indeed. As a musician raised by a family of musicians, it's pretty amazing what you can find lying around the house. I probably wouldn't have my own drums today except that my dad decided to buy me a kit back in high school. True, none of my instruments are top-of-the-line like the girls', but I put that one down as Rule of Cool.
  • Why does Yui feel so tortured about leaving her guitar in the school for one night? She leaves it for 3 days during school trip before and she seems to have no problem at all with that.
    • She may feel less secure about leaving it in school rather than at home.
    • Because she loves it.
  • Why is everybody at their school only interested in Mio? There don't seem to be fans for the band as a whole.
  • How can the girls have conversations at a normal speaking volume during an outdoor rock concert? Do they use telepathy as well?
    • They seem to use telepathy — at least in S1 episode 8 (the concert at the start of second year), Mio manages to talk to Yui while singing.
    • And Sawako might be good at micro-managing festival visits, but she still forgets to equip the girls with the most important item: earplugs. We wouldn't want them to become deaf at an early age, now do we?
  • More of an observation that a bug but, I didn't think Yui could get such a burst of anger.
    • This comes from an anthology chapter, a comic drawn by a guest artist. All the anthology chapters are non-canon.
      • Actually, Yui does get very angry at Nodoka after Nodoka eats the strawberry off her cake.
      • She was more surprised and sad than angry
  • Why don't the girls grow up? Most people change a lot between the ages of 15 and 17.5, but the girls stay pretty much the same. It's also strange that pretty, popular girls like them wouldn't get love interests in the meantime.
    • About the second part: their school is an all-girl school, so their popularity is limited to members of their own sex. Not that there's anything wrong with that, but they can't all be lesbians, right?
      • Of course they can all be lesbians!
      • [original commenter who "asked" the 'lesbians' question here] Sigh... So that's what the About Rhetorical Questions page was warning us about! Should have taken heed. Or added a ;) smiley at the end
    • They're not that popular. Sure, their concerts are pretty good, but few and far between. Not to mention, we dont see them hanging out with any boys outside the school.
    • The third OP shows the girls performing for a group of wildly enthusiastic students, so they really should have more fans.
    • There was a slight change in art style between the first and second seasons: the girls' limbs aren't drawn as spindly-looking, and they have proportionally smaller heads and eyes. This could be a sign that they're supposed to look more grown-up.
  • Why won't anybody give Mugi a hug?
    • Or hit her?
      • She does get bonked over the head once, but it's obvious she wouldn't mind being gently rocked in one of the other girls' arms. Not even Yui indulges her. Poor Mugi.
      • :'(
      • To soften your hearts: Episode 11 has Yui giving Mugi a hug, and Ritsu hits her once. It should still have happened more often...
    • My guess is that it is because Mugi gives off the Ojou vibe. That, and she's the one most likely to be serving tea and cakes - don't want to make a mess of that, ya know.
  • Does anyone else think the whole premise of the "marathon" in season 2 episode 15 was something of an Ass Pull? We're told that the entire student body goes on a 5K run every year, but not only is this the first time we've heard of it, all of the characters act like they've never done it before. I know Sawako said this is the first time they've run this particular course, but even so, nobody mentions their experience from the two previous years as a point of comparison.
    • 3 Miles? Jesus. And American high school students bitch about running one mile.
      • That's a 3 mile run every year. In this Troper's experience, we US middle school students ran one mile every week.
  • In season 2 episode 5, Ui seems unsure about her music playing skills, and end up playing the organ. But... isn't she actually slightly better than Yui on the guitar? (Season 1 ep 12)
    • This is Ui we're talking about. She seems to have something of an inferiority complex, regarding Yui in particular. Since Yui is something of a Genius Ditz regarding music, Ui's obviously going to think she herself sucks.
      • It could be that Ui doesn't want to overshadow her older sister. The Guitar is something that Yui is pretty good at, and she likes it. If Yui knew how her sister was better, she might begin to feel bad, because Ui excels in so many other areas.
  • Why doesn't Yui confess toward Azusa already? Her feelings couldn't become any more bleedingly obvious.
    • They don't want to put relationship drama/love to tease the Shipping. If it's going to happen, chances are it will be near or at the end of the series.
      • The last page of the manga actually has Yui holding hands with Mio. Make of that what you wish.
  • In S1, after Azuza joins, she's added to the opening. Why don't they add her to the ending?
    • They couldn't just superimpose her image there, so redoing the ending would have been quite a bit more expensive. Remember that when the series was made, nobody could expect it to become such a cash cow.
  • By the end of the girl's senior performance in front of the school, both the manga and the anime decide that it's the perfect time to completely yank the audience's tears out into the rug in waterfalls! Why, Kyo Ani?
    • The girls realize they will soon have to say goodbye to likely the most wonderful time they will ever have in their lifetime. The Japanese tend to be extremely nostalgic about the high school days anyway, as evidenced by other series like Azumanga Daioh, Lucky Star and Manabi Straight, so you have yourself a recipe for some major bittersweet moments.
      • Their usual high school term lasts a year shorter than ours in the States, but it's no different — we are also very nostalgic about our high school years or college years, negative or otherwise, and wonder how things will be different. The fact that Mio, of all the girls, walks on her knees to them and declares it the best experience of her life say so much.
  • There's not a single degree of impressive guitar playing to be found; not a single solo. I ain't asking for no Yngwie Malmsteen, but at least one guitar solo would be cool in season 2. The only real one we have is Sawako's, and any middle schooler can finger tap.
    • That kinda confirms that they aren't professionals musicians or anything — just high schoolers who don't spend much time practicing.
    • I believe that argument has little merit when dealing with Yui; since she commonly is portrayed as working hard and practicing nearly every day. In the most recent episode she's late for school because she got up early to practice. All in all, I don't believe it shows.
      • Yui and Azusa do show some very impressive guitar playing skills already. Playing good rhythm guitar parts is a skill in its own right, and the girls are more than up for the task. It looks they simply aren't that much into soloing and like to focus more on the songs themselves instead.
    • It's Coconut Superpowers again: KyoAni doesn't want to animate any more guitar solos after the Haruhi concert. You can hear the band's guitar solos on the album versions of the songs, and particularly Yui and Azusa's character Image Song albums.
      • Which makes you wonder why they would then make a show about a band.
    • Mio's bass skills are pretty darn impressive from the get-go, though. That's some wonderfully melodic line she's playing on Cagayake GIRLS!, for one. Okay, it's technically perhaps not guitar, but still...
    • Even though they do practice, it's still pretty realistic that they wouldn't be that good. Azusa should probably be a little better than she is, but the other girls are all fairly new to their instruments in the grand scheme of things. Think of any high school band you've heard, and then realize Houkago Tea Time is basically a fictional version of that.
  • Why did the Light Music Club run the risk of being dismantled with three members, when the Occult club gets by just fine with having only two?
    • There are probably more, we just don't see them.
    • They're the Occult club, they have ways unknown to the muggles.
    • There are Things Man Was Not Meant to Know.
    • They have ghost members.note 
  • Season 2 episode 26 references the season 1 Blu-ray covers but interpretations for volume 7's cover have gone right out the window.
    • Before episode 26: Given Mio's incident back in season 1 episode 6, the cover implies she (panicked about exposing herself again and, going into her panicked crouch,) chose not to jump at the last second.
    • Episode 26's Retcon Jossing: Mio tempts fate and misses the jump. They may have done this to avoid Flanderization, but still.
  • Why does it take the girls so long to run through the hallways in episode 26? The building is really not that big.
    • Maybe to show off Conspicuous CG and/or have a last look around the place before they left.
    • S2 episode 15 proved they're not exactly fast runners...
    • The hallways are also stretched out a lot. There are not that many classrooms to a floor.
  • In the episode when Mio sings for the first time, Mugi claims she canít sing lead because she has to play keyboards, but that hardly stopped Dennis De Young from singing lead in Styx. Ritsu made the same claim about playing the drums, yet Peter Criss managed to sing Black Diamond quite well while playing drums in Kiss.
    • A lot of people have trouble playing an instrument and singing simultaneously, since you're practically playing two instruments then. It can be learned, though, with lots of practice. Singing is especially hard while playing bass, because of the vastly different rhythmical roles, so it's quite an achievement Mio pulls it off without any trouble.
  • Minor thing, but why is the title for Fuwa Fuwa Time officially written with the kanji for "Time"? This sometimes results in it being erronously romanized as "Fuwa Fuwa Jikan". Since the lyrics are the English word "time", why not use katakana? (like they often do for the "Tea Time" part of the band name, for example)
    • The Japanese like doing that - writing kanji but reading it as English. See the titles of Saint Seiya or To Aru Majutsu no Index for examples. Mostly for Rule of Cool.
    • To elaborate, the title is written as ふわふわ時間, where 時間 has the furigana タイム (taimu/time). This means that despite the kanji, it should be read as Fuwa Fuwa Time.
      • [I am assuming that the person above is the OP elaborating on their original question] The titles mentioned in the first response are exactly the same - the latter title is written as とある魔術の禁書目録, where 禁書目録 has the furigana インデックス (indekkusu/index). And yes, it is mostly for Rule of Cool. The thing about kanji usage in Japanese is that, compared to the original Chinese, the characters have much weaker ties to both their pronunciation and their meaning. Characters may be used for their pronunciation with no regard for their meaning (for example 寿司 "sushi"; the two characters separately mean "longevity" and "official, administrator", respectively), or for their meaning with no regard for the pronunciations (煙 "smoke" + 草 "grass" = 煙草 "tobacco", pronounced tabako, even though normally the on'yomi for the compound would be ensou and the kun'yomi would be kemurigusa). The taimu and indekkusu readings are an extension of the latter case, the only difference being that they are in no way standard, but rather one-off usages in accordance with the respective authors' intents. The page about Alternate Character Reading has more examples of such non-standard usage.
  • When Yui has to fetch her guitar in episode 12 of the first season, why does she first change back into her school uniform? She hardly has any time for that.
    • Would you really run around in that flashy outfit?
      • Do you mean, "Would the girl who would later, when her uniform gets soaked, picks the pig costume to wear back to class, and only wears the maid outfit because the others talk her out of it, wear that flashy outfit?"
  • I don't like pairing the characters in this show with each other. Truth be told, it's mainly because I'm female and I dislike yaoi and yuri, but still, it's only evident that Mugi might be lesbian/bisexual. K-On! is a show about perverted girls joking with each other, I don't see it being anything more. My friends joke around like that a lot. We're straight. And mainly, the fanservice in K-On! is added for effect, in order to attract more of the male demographic. Period. Others may disagree, as you are entitled to your opinion; but please don't flame me for this!
    • It all depends on how you look at it. If you ask me, girls in Slice of Life animes are especially close to each other. But, I'd say you can't deny it, merely because you don't like lesbian relationships.
    • Very true. It's not that I don't like lesbian relationships, by the way, I'm not a homophobe, but I'm not exactly a yaoi or yuri fan either. I love K-On! though, as a show, and yes, there is a lot of subtexts to support the pairings. You're correct, I can't exactly deny that. But I'm a girl who's very close to my friends, and I don't like the fact that the fans of the show are turning good friends into lesbians! Of course, we all have our own opinions, some may be fans of the pairings, some may not.
    • I am lesbian and most of my earlier relationships started out pretty much as depicted in the show, namely as very intense close friendships. So yes, even if a lot of the subtext is likely fanservice, it's not that unrealistic (although I can't remember ever being so extremely cutesy with my love interests all the time). I also don't think that girls immediately have to label themselves as "lesbian" or "bi" when they have feelings for a another girl, seeing how love is an extremely sliding scale. You also have to realize that romantic two girl friendships are considered fairly normal in Japan, so this might be a cultural issue.
      By the way: why do you think they're perverted? The stuff they pull with each other is rather tame, really
    • I was actually talking about the fanart that is on multiple websites that is very very risque / sexual. Not all yuri or yaoi is sexual though - most hardcore is. Most of the events in K-On! are borderline shoujo ai. The stuff they pull is very, no- immensely- clean in the show, but I find that artists are taking the borderline to an extreme. Although I have no problem with it, I'm afraid if someone, say, my younger sister who's a prude (to say the least), a youngster, would run across it. Luckily, most is blocked by Google Safe Search and filters.
      • There is pornographic fanart of every show out there. No exceptions. So it's a bit silly to blame this show for its existence. Also, would your little sister faint if she saw two girls hold hands or kiss? Or are you afraid she might even ... like it?
    • My particular pet peeve is that it's almost impossible to find any Original Flavor fanfiction because so much of it is centered on romance. The best you can get are one shots or stories where the romance is less central to the plot. It's like the lack of romance in the source material caused some sort of backlash in the fanfic community.
      • Er, nope. Look at any collection of fanfiction for any fandom. Most of it will either be a romantic story, or involve romance heavily in some way, whether there's romance in the canon storyline or not. This definitely isn't exclusive to this anime.
  • Why can't Mugi sing and play piano at the same time in the beginning? When she introduces Honey Sweet Tea Time in the second season, she has no problem when Yui suggests she do lead vocal. Also, she and Ritsu are shown singing in Ep 24.
    • Mugi was fairly shy in the beginnning. Sure, she was not quite at Mio's level, but she has clearly gained a lot of self-confidence during the course of the series.
  • Why does Mio know so much about guitar? She even has a book on guitar chords. One might say she picked it up before bass, but in Ep 2 she is shown blowing up at the mere thought of playing guitar.
    • Yes, on stage that is. Lots of bass players play guitar, even if it's just for the fun of it. Plus, bass guitar and electric guitar are not that dissimilar from a technical viewpoint.
  • During their school trip, why do the girls take the taxi to Arashiyama? Their hotel is very near Hanazono station, and Arashiyama is only a short ride from there.
    • And in the end, why don't they take the taxi back to the hotel, when they can't find any of the two train stations near Arashiyama? They also hang around at a bus stop at first, so they could have taken a bus from there to either station. Are Japanese girls really that impractical?
  • How has Yui managed NOT to be held back due to her grades???
  • Don't this also come into Mugi's DoesNotKnowHisOwnStrength
    • It seems like it does.
  • When they try to find a guitar for Yui, why don't they dig around in the club's old stuff first? When they do it later they find an old Gibson SG, which is arguably on par with the Les Paul Yui buys in the music store (and not to mention a lot less heavy).
    • Well, when they find the Gibson they aren't looking for it, they're cleaning up after not having done so since...the club started the year before. It wasn't in plain sight - even Sawako-sensei had forgotten about it being there! It seems likely that it didn't even occur to them that there would be that nice of guitar there. And, even so, while the Gibson sold for a great price, the store worker they sold it to said it would have sold for an even higher price if it wasn't in mediocre condition from being in storage for so long, so it's not likely Yui really would've wanted to use it anyway. And just imagine a world without Gitah...
  • This isn't really a complaint, but it did strike me a bit odd, as well as incredibly random. In the English dub, exactly why did they feel a need to replace the incredibly generic-sounding version of Tsubasa wo Kudasai that Mio, Ritsu and Mugi play in the first episode with a somehow-even-more-generic-sounding version of Love Me Tender? It seems especially weird to me since they left the rest of the music alone. So like...was there a legal reason they had to change it? Or was it an attempt at a Woolseyism that just went over my head?
    • From what I heard Tsubasa wo Kudasai is one of those songs that pretty much everyone who grew up in Japan is familiar with since birth. It's been covered to death by professionals and amateurs alike, and the fact that they do it in such a generic manner says a lot about the level of creativity of the band at that point. I didn't grow up in an English-speaking culture, so I'm not sure if Love Me Tender has the same status in the US, but I'm guessing that Tsubasa wo Kudasai isn't nearly that well known over there. Much of the adience might not realize just how unoriginal their performance of that song is, or even mistake the song for an original composition.
  • Not a huge complaint, but I'm kind of weirded out by the sheer number of times they feel the need to have "Ui is the younger sister but actually acts more like an older sister!!!" moments. We get it. It was worth mentioning once or twice, but honestly.. And really, it's not strange at all. It's pretty common when two siblings are relatively close in age that one acts more mature while the other depends on them- especially in cases where the parents are often absent. Sometimes the more mature one is the oldest, sometimes it's the youngest, but why does the anime think it's so insanely unusual for Ui to take care of Yui?
    • Maybe Values Dissonance? Iím definitely not an expert so I canít say it for sure, but as far as I know, in Japan thereís more of an expectation that the oldest will be the dependable sibling, in order to give an example for the younger one ó especially when the parents are absent, as in this scenario you'd expect the older sister to assume the parents' part. If my assumption is right and this tendency is a bigger deal in Japan, then itís understandable that the girls keep bringing it up and expecting that at some point Yui will act as the "responsible one".
  • Why did they not make the animation of the first ending (Don't Say Lazy) fit the song? It's not video lagging, it's some kind of stylistic choice. It just sort of sets off my OCD a bit because she's clearly singing the song, but her face doesn't quite match, and I'm also slightly wierded out by the weird eye things she does at the beginning of the song.
  • In the movie, why does Azusa get so upset about the idea the idea that Yui might have feelings for her? Sure, she finds Yui's clinginess bothersome at times, but in the end of the manga she seemed quite close to confessing to Yui herself. Of course, it's in line with the toning down of the manga's les yay elements in the anime, but it still feels like character derailment.
    • Possibly Azusa is seeking a sempai-kohai relationship with Yui rather than anything romantic. There is fertile ground for conflict if you thought the kind of relationship you sought with someone you're close with (or want to be) wasn't the same as the kind of relationship he/she sought with you.
    • Another possibility is that she does have romantic feelings for Yui but she's a bit frightened because she doesn't know what might happen if it were out in the open. This is just a guess, but she does write a letter to Yui at the end, which we don't get to see.
  • My question is, in the beginning, since Yui couldn't play any instrument other than castanets, why didn't they just make her the singer? She sings pretty good.
    • Heck, she could have kept at playing castanets, since all they needed was another member to keep the club going.
    • She probably could have, especially since she takes to the frontwoman role like a duck to water once she finally gets her chance and genuinely enjoys interacting with their audiences. But they were all so focused on getting their instruments down that nobody in the band even thought about the fact they needed a vocalist until Sawako brought it up several months later. Even if Yui had done nothing but sing from day one, though, they still needed a guitarist to bring their sound together. The only other option would have been adapting themselves into a guitar-less piano rock band like Ben Folds Five using Mugi's keyboard as the lead instrument, but no one thought of that idea either, plus it's hard to imagine Ritsu softening her drumming enough to fit that style of music.
  • Why is Sawako's band, Death Devil, the only predecessor ever mentioned? Enough time has lapsed for at least one band to come in between that one and HTT (or else the club would have been disbanded already), and of course there would have been some before that as well, but oddly they left no trace of their existence whatsoever.
    • Possibly because Sawako is readily accessible to HTT as opposed to any former members of the other bands, so the connection story-wise is more easily maintained. Maybe none of the others made their own mix tape to leave for future generations (perhaps the Lazy Bug is endemic in the Light Music club), or if they did Mio just found Death Devil to be the most impressive.

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