“I combined the post for the last three [two] episodes of [K-On!!] for artistic and narrative purposes, not because of laziness.” ~ If you don’t learn from the best, then you’ll never become a great anime reviewer.
For the most part, “Extra Episodes” are like throw away episodes: You don’t expect anything important or impactful from them. For the most part, Episode 25 and 26 were just that. But behind all the silliness, there were a few moments in these final episodes that proved to be important in providing closure for all who love K-On.
Episode 25 explored a time when all our girls made an honest attempt (or at least a lazy attempt that they pretended was an honest attempt) toward securing the future of the Light Music Club. In some ways, making a promotional video makes sense but I can’t imagine when or where they would show it… Perhaps during one of the concerts or festivals? Considering all the reasons Jun’s jealous of the Light Music Club (the sleepovers, the training camps, the sweets and afternoon tea) why wouldn’t anyone want to join? That’s what they should have put in the video or maybe even made a video of. …Though, realistically, after Mugi’s graduated and left the school, they won’t be enjoying half of those luxuries.
Episode 26 started out unimportant with a focus on photos in the yearbook, but when the four seniors went to Sawako’s house, things seemed to “wrap up” a second time around. The show took the opportunity to display how important and deep Sawako’s relationship is with Yui and the others, and how much she’s going to miss them when they finally leave. At first, when Norimi-san and the others showed up, I was a bit confused as to why they were brought back in the end and for such a short scene, but after thinking about it, I realized the importance of Sawako’s friends showing up is two-fold: First, it shows that Sawako has friends other than her students. Secondly, the appearance of said friends is like an implied nod to the future of Yui and the others and how the friendships they’ve forged during their years in high school can last a lifetime. Even though we had an episode that was more or less dedicated to Sawako and her old Light Music Club buddies, it didn’t really tie in for me until this final episode the true importance of Sawako’s character: It’s a glimpse into the past and future all at the same time.
Speaking of Past, Present, and Future, the lines become definitive by the end of the episode with Sawako hanging out with her friends (Past), Yui, Mugi, Mio, and Ritsu heading back to school together (Present), and Azusa practicing with Jun and Ui (Future) – who also happen to make up the new Light Music Club. The seniors not entering the music room after returning to the school was symbolic of their letting go of Azusa and the club – much like how Azusa had to learn to let go of them and move on herself.
And finally, it ends much like how it began: with our four main girls.
I know a lot of people don’t like K-On. I know a lot of people think it’s a show about nothing but the silliness of girls. I know some people who gripe and complain about not getting enough music out of a show that’s about a school music club and a formed band (and yes: I’m one of them). But when you really think about the show in its entirety, when you really break down the plot and storyline, you realize that K-On is about friendship, and in its own light-hearted, easy-going, slice-of-life way, it achieves everything it sets out to do.
But I’m still holding it against the creators that we never heard “Honey Sweet Tea Time”.
They have an entire full-feature film to comply with my demands.
(And you thought it was all over.)