Some time ago, I wrote a post about the fashion sense in K-On!! In that post, I lamented a lack of different pretty clothes in the second season. With successive episodes of K-On!!, I have since changed my opinion. K-On!! has exceeded the first season in style.
Besides wearing different gimmicky costumes, such as the lovely punk rock gears and swimsuits, the girls also sport some really nice casual clothes. It is very refreshing to see that they do not just have two sets of clothes (school and home) for the whole 26 episodes. What really caught my eyes this time though is the retro fashion in the two ending sequences, Listen!! and No, Thank you!
Whereas the first season’s ending is geared more toward cosplay, the two ending sequences of the second season are all about the vintage glamour of 1980’s (and late 70’s/ early 90’s).
Consider the first ending sequence of K-On!!
We see the characteristic loose tops coupled with tighter pants or flare skirts. The belts on Mio and Ritsu, the legging on Azusa and Mio, and the simple print designs are all very reminiscent of the 80’s as well. The printed lips on Yui are an especially iconic symbol of that era.
The colors also scream of retro fashion, which often features a faded vintage palette with paired with contrasting bright bold colors. For example, in Listen!, Mio wears a light purple boat neck top and bright red leggings. Similarly, Azusa has bold red polka dots on her white top and very blue leggings under a pale black skirt.
This retro theme is followed up by the second ending, NO, Thank You!
In No, Thank You!, we see the familiar influences again: the color schemes, simple large prints, and the dead giveaway, colorful leggings. We also see other fashion sense from the 80’s. Both Azusa and Mugi have tied their hair up into ponytails with scrunchies. Ponytails and scrunchies were very popular in the 80’s. Side pony tails are especially exclusive to that time period as they are rarely seen in pop culture later. Of course, we also have the wrist bands and sleeveless tops on Yui and dolphin shorts over leggings on Ritsu. The 80’s marked the emergence of sport and fitness wear as casual wear. Yui and Ritsu’s clothes reflect that trend.
Other characteristic clothing items include Mugi’s layered skirt shorts, Mio’s gloves and beaded bracelet, and the white loose dress with a black belt under Mio’s hoodie. In fact, even Mio’s hoodie is part of 80’s culture. Hoodies started taking off with the growth of hip hop culture in the late 70’s and has since gained widespread popularity. Further, Mio’s colors are certainly very retro. Indeed, These are all chic clothes of the fabulous 80’s.
Just as Katy Perry is bringing retro back in US pop entertainment, K-On!! is spearheading the movement in anime… Kind of. At the very least, these two new endings have given me a new appreciation for 80’s glamour.
By the way, I think Mugi has some of the cutest clothes and Mio is super awesome in the new ending.