K-On! 05: Mugi’s Eureka = Yuri ka?!

One of Nietzsche’s loveliest sentences is “Become who you are.”  The immediate implication of this statement dazzled me the first time I came across it, and it dazzles me today, namely, that you actually have the alternative not to become who you are.  Nietzsche’s words are at heart a warning: make sure you don’t get derailed in your life and end up becoming someone else.  Some people call this dangerous path “selling out.”

Manifest Destiny

Manifest Destiny

Of course, it’s hard to figure out who you are in the first place, and the best (only?) strategy might be not so much to focus on one goal but to move along and listen to your heart when it tells you you’re going the wrong way.  Eventually, if you steer clear of the potholes, you’ll find yourself on the right road.

Unrequited love seems to be a classic catalyst for this process.  Two examples from Goethe: 1) hopeless love for Gretchen leads Faust to sorcery, which he desired from the start; 2) hopeless love for Lotte leads Werther to suicide, ditto.  It worked for Sawako-sensei.  The question is: will it work for Tsumugi?

Goddess of This Chord

Goddess of This Chord

Mugi’s attraction for Sensei is destiny itself.  As scioness of a mighty business conglomerate, she has had it all.  And all that is left for her to do is to finish school, work for Dad a couple of years, marry, produce an heir, voila.  But for people at this level, there is only one thing that they don’t have, and it’s the one thing that by definition will threaten their possession of everything else: freedom, rebellion.  [This is why Lucifer, the Lord’s favorite angel, rebelled].

No better way for a girl in Tsumugi’s position to rebel than to yearn for a same-sex relationship (bye bye heir), and with a schoolteacher with a shady past to boot!  I’m curious to see how Mugi will deal with this crush, and whether she’ll ever think of employing her financial resources to get her own way…



Sawako-sensei’s situation is interesting.  I don’t believe for a second that her little goodytwoshoes act means that she’s reverted from her musical awakening.  This is like Buddhist enlightenment, she couldn’t go back even if she wanted to!  What this means is she’s wearing a mask.

In terms of Japanese literature one easily comes to Yukio Mishima’s semi-autobiographical Confessions of a Mask.  Here he goes through a series of unrequited crushes for male schoolmates that finally force him to become who he is, although the mask that he wears stays on more or less for the rest of his life…  In Sawako’s case, not wearing a mask means wearing one, and viceversa.  Nice paradox!



Emotional masks are a heavy burden.  You could argue Mishima pulled it off well; you could argue his death proves he didn’t.  In musical terms, I think of Nirvana‘s Come as You Are.  Sawako-sensei must have this confusion running in her head:

Come as you are

as you were

as I want you to be

as a friend (x2)

as a known memory.

As I most definitely do not want to win the title for most depressing  K-On! blog post ever, let me switch gears here and talk about the fact that this episode was hilarious from beginning to end.  It reminded me of the first episode, with a perfect combination of fast-paced slapstick action and snappy rapid-fire jokes.



Ritsu and Yui, which were engaged in a mind-meld last episode, were clearly separate in this one.  Pinky and the Brain come to mind here.  Ritsu’s is the silliness of ambition and conquest.  Yui’s is the silliness of bunnies and fluffy ducks.  I think it’s great they both share a general zest for life and a craving for cakes and pastries, but outside of that, let’s try to keep them apart!

Then there’s Mio.  I don’t know why everyone keeps calling Yui the moe-blob, when it’s Mio that insists on actually getting into a blob-like state.  I think people are being blinded by their Blobbles here.  Anyway, her song lyrics were cute and I am looking forward to seeing the School Festival next week!

And please, don’t think of the fact that Werther, Mishima and Cobain all−  You know what I mean!  If Mio hears about it she will get upset so let’s not mention it, OK?

~ by Haloed Bane on May 4, 2009.

15 Responses to “K-On! 05: Mugi’s Eureka = Yuri ka?!”

  1. Madness. Consider me this blog’s #1 Fan(boy). You have pierced the heavens with this post. I flatter myself by thinking I can write posts like this, but truthfully I’d rather read yours.

    I’ll become who I am and remain a fanboy, only that the idols are variable. Doesn’t this make the fanboy a bit too powerful? Nietzche implies free will, which at the very least is a problematic concept.

    Ecce Fanboy

  2. prelim comment: of what work does said Nie-sama quote derive? I MSUT NKOW1!

  3. @ghostlightning

    Thanks for the support! How does that go? “Believe in me who believes in you”..

    According to Nick Bostrom’s theory, we are all likely living inside a computer simulation, so we might all be the idols of some fanboy alien. Look here: http://www.simulation-argument.com/


    Gay Science Aphorism # 270. The subtitle for his last book Ecce Homo is “How one Becomes who one Is” so it’s a variation of that.

    Apparently the quote is a paraphrase of the poet Pindar. I just downloaded an old translation of his Odes, and sure enough, in his 2nd Pythian Ode he says:

    “Show thyself to be what thou naturally art, since thou hast learnt what thou art.”

    Pindar was advising a successful man not to let others ruin him but to continue down his own path. The Greeks knew it all, 2500 years ago. It ain’t fair 🙂

  4. I don’t think Mugi has the hots for Sawako-sensei necessarily, despite her compliment about her. You noticed that she was blushing never at moments when Sawako-sensei was alone, but when she was in the close contact of the other members of the club like Yui and Ritsu. Which makes sense when you consider her position of liking to observe girls in the process of bonding with each other.

    With the “puni puni” moment earlier in the series, manga-wise, that should have been the first time that you would see Tsugumi’s yuri-goggles, so eliminating that was kinda disappointing to me, and made me surprised that they actually decided to focus on that aspect. 😛

  5. But… But, ghostlightning, I SAW HIM FIRST ;_;

    And, well, I stand unable to say much about this episode except that it confirmed, with a devent bit of overkill, that Mugi is the most adorable one out of the bunch.

  6. @N

    You’re totally right!! I went back and read the manga, but even the anime is pretty clear: Mugi is simply a lesbian, and not at all focused on Sawako-sensei. What threw me off is that she seems so debonaire in her daily life (I mean, she’s in a girls’ high school for crying out loud) but as soon two girls are touching she gets all in a tizzy. Because in the anime it happened first with Sawako I just took it the wrong way…

    Which makes me a bit sad, because a generic lesbian without an actual love interest is, well, generic. I’d much rather have her be someone in love, as such.


    Mugi is also the palest. It’s subtle, but I’ve noticed Yui and Ritsu are darker than Mio, and Mio is darker than Mugi.

  7. The answer seems to be inside Thomas Anderson’s copy of Baudrillard’s Simulacrum et Simulacra only that when I opened it, it was hollow save for a decapitated haruhi keychain and a piece of paper with Kaiserpingvin’s comment scribbled furiously on it.

  8. Though seeing Tsumugi go all blushing anytime she has a “yuri delusion” doesn’t necessarily make her a lesbian, you know. To paraphrase another (male) blogger, “just because I like seeing girls bond doesn’t mean I’m a lesbian”. In this case though, I don’t think orientation really matters, and for the moment it’s just “that quirk that Tsugumi has”.

  9. @ghost

    You must have some funky dreams, dude.


    A straight man enjoys looking at women bonding because he likes women. Gay men don’t make it a hobby of looking at women bonding. Thus, Mugi is a lesbian in my book. Either that or a voyeuse with a fetish for woman’s love, which would make her something like a passive lesbian… Sapphic scioness yay!

  10. I’m with ak here, Mugi is a lesbian, or at least bisexual, or better yet ignorant of any such delusions as sexual orientation. She is just full of love, as God should be.

  11. I will now settle this issue once and for all: Mugi is a lesbian. Now we can move on to more important things, like drawing her lesbian misadventures with Sawako-sensei.

  12. […] appreciation. ‘They’ is perhaps hyperbole, only 1 guy likes Ritsu). I’ve had my Yuri-ka moment and found God (or at least deux ex machina), and have picked Mugi as my favorite. Yes I have […]

  13. […] Fuwa Fuwa Time! ~Me, Myself, and Moe~ By usagijen ⋅ June 8, 2009 ⋅ Post a comment Hello there! If you are new here, you might want to subscribe to the RSS feed for updates on this topic.Powered by WP Greet Box yuri-ka? […]

  14. […] yuri-ka? […]

  15. […] Mugi’s Eureka = Yuri ka?! […]

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