K-On is one of those shows that I feel I could rewatch an infinite amount of times without getting bored of it. Ok, that’s probably an exaggeration, but I have seen the first season 3 or 4 times and the second season twice, and I’m not tired of it. I think the thing that keeps bringing me back to it is how animated everything is. I’m not the hugest fan of the character designs or those stories where nothing really happens most of the time, but K-On is nothing if not animated, both in the literal sense and in the sense that it is lively. No non-KyoAni slice of life moe show has managed to live up to it.
While most of the show indeed consists of scenes where the characters drink tea and eat cake or do other mundane things, there is an overarching story, and I’m quite fond of it. In particular, I love how the final episode of the first season mirrors the first episode and shows just how far Yui has come in terms of being able to do what she really wants to do. Sure, she’s still a klutz and not really self-sufficient when it comes to chores and stuff, but it’s still obvious that she’s grown a lot. Anyway, this part of the show is not what makes me watch episode after episode without getting bored, but it is a source of emotional catharsis which, in itself, elevates K-On above a large number of “more serious” drama anime.
There’s really only one thing that bothers me about K-On as a whole, and that’s the length of the first season versus the second season. The first season is 13 episodes long but spans 2 years of in-story time, whereas the second season is 26 episodes long and spans 1 year. This means that the first season is approximately 4 times as dense as the second season in terms of story. And it’s not that I think the second season drags too much or gets boring(some of my favourite scenes are in season 2 after all), it’s just that when I mentally compare the pacing of the two seasons, it’s jarring. So yeah, that’s my biggest issue with the series.