During the first few episodes of Clannad After Story I became afraid that they would just check off all the minor characters sidestories that didn’t fit in the first season over the whole run of the second one, but with crossing the school graduation border with Tomoya the series goes where only a few other series have gone before. After this (story-wise) point of no return Tomoya has to face a new kind of reality and has to find a place in the world he lived so far, and by telling this in a realistic, comprehensible and especially interesting way this series reaches a whole new quality. Before I was always in some degree comparing Clannad with the other two Key/KyoAni productions Kanon and Air, but now this isn’t any longer sufficient, because the topics just don’t match anymore. Clannad just can’t be seen as a mere (more or less equal) “copy” of the other two series anymore. A very welcome development I’d say.
Archive for the ‘Clannad’ Category
After the first six episodes of Clannad ~After Story~ I wonder if there is actually some after-story left to tell about the main characters after their respective main stories were told in the original series. Beside of Nagisa and Tomoya, who are practically bound to appear a lot, the other characters were demoted to a few cameos here and there in the last five episodes (with the first episode featuring all Clannad characters for a quick reintroduction I guess). Not that those episodes were wasted time, quite the opposite for sure, but, for example, Misae made no impact to me at all in the original series. I don’t have anything against watching the stories of the minor characters, but I would like to see a stronger integration of the main characters in them, because in the end they are the ones I’m watching this series for in the first place. After all, one of the major advantages Clannad had to, for example, Kanon is the fact that its girls didn’t “disappear” after their individual arc was done with, but still appeared in and even affected the later episodes in some degree. This is something I’m missing so far in the ~After Story~s.
I’m not that much into sport animes and I watched the first few Bamboo Blade episodes only because I had a bit too much free time at that moment. The quality is quite good after all and girls with swords always catch my interest, even if those swords only made of bamboo. Well, didn’t took much more to make this series grew to me. In the end, the whole run was pretty entertaining and it was a nice bonus to learn some basics about kendo. It’s only a bit sad that except of Tamaki the characters, even if well drawn from the beginning, never really developed much more from the start till the end. It also would have been a good addition to get to know that great side of Dan-kun everybody in the series seem to have seen at some time (especially Miyako). The way of love are surely strange and I like the basic idea behind this unusual couple, but in the end he stayed only annoying to me. Maybe the possible second season might iron those flaws out.
Like all the other KyoAni series before this one Clannad was already worth to watch only because of the brilliant quality of the technical aspects of this show. Of course the rest of the series was also quite entertaining and well made and I especially liked the gain of interaction between the girls in comparison to Kanon and Air. Guess to even this up the relationships between Tomoya and the individual girls somehow had not that much of emotional impact as in the named forerunner. But at least there were no supernatural components to the girls this time which gave the whole story a nice touch of normality. Okay, Fuko is a exception of this and while she wasn’t unlikeable at all she always had a way to ruin the mood (but not without being funny while doing so) and altogether she and her story arc somehow feels displaced to the rest of the show.
Oh, and while I’m eager to watch the already announced Clannad’s After Story I fear at the same time that I’m rather feed up by Key products at the moment. Maybe something in the style of FMP or the (*gasp*) next season of Haruhi Suzumiya would be nice change once in a while.
Shakugan no Shana Second
After the shallow start the second season of Shakugan no Shana finally got back on track again midways and ended with a great but a bit rushed final. Especially each of Wilhelmina’s share of the fighting sequences were highly entertaining to watch and Sabrac was just one hell of a good villain. Seeing Yuji to become useful on his on in fighting was also nice to see. I’m glad that this series was able to deliver in the end. I understand that the part with Konoe was important for the final and for some character development, but I believe that this part could have been cropped a bit after all. The attained screentime could have been used to give the Bal Masqué some more screentime to give a better feeling for the things to come or to make the ending a little bit less rushed (or to give Wilhelmina even more fighting sequences). But the ending was in all cases better than the one of Zero no Tsukaima, but I guess this goes without saying. And, like with both other series named above, I’m eager to watch the next season of this one.
Well, to tell the truth this wallpaper didn’t existed in my wallpaper-shuffle till yesterday, but after having watched the formidable seventeenth episode of Clannad today I had the sudden urge to have at least one wallpaper of this anime in my list. Don’t know how much people tried to stack two 10 Yen coins on their edges the last few days, I surely would have if I had them available. *g*
After a rather slow start this series grows more and more to me. For now I’d say that I still like Kanon better. I somehow cared more for the backstories of the girls then, maybe I’m just a bit feed up about the topic nice-girl with sad-past at the moment. But by having much more interaction between the girls and by not kicking them out of the mix after their story is told Clannad accomplishes to create a much more lively atmosphere which finally doesn’t remind of a survival of the fittest contest. Thus I think that Clannad surely might top Kanon in the end, won’t be too sad about it.
By the way, I created this wallpaper by basically just cropped it out of a larger scan that can be found here. It’s a bit like carving a spoon out of a bigger one, only a tiny little bit less useless I guess.
I’m already set for Clannad just because it is made by KyoAni. Might not be the best reason, but it’s sufficient for me and so far the animation quality is as good as expected. The first episode introduced Tomoya, the male protagonist, who isn’t sarcastic for a change but seems to be rather uninterested in to annoyed by his daily life routine. Even so he behaves normal on the outside and soon gets in contact with a bunch of girls from his school, who with no doubt each should have a more or less mysterious problem to come by. The obligatory male side-kick loser rounds the character set up. So while the main plot should be nothing spectacularly new the individually backstories of the characters might be quite interesting, although similarities with Kanon are to be expected.
Myself; Yourself seems to be standard harem drama so far with a 16-year old boy, Sana, coming back to town after a five year long detour. He left with a tearful goodbye at that time (which was nearly sickly sweet). Now meeting his old friends again he gets to know how they, uh, developed from that time and everybody is happy about their reunion. Everybody, except one of his female friends, who he doesn’t recognize at first and promptly gets smacked by…
As been said, so far pretty generic, but the intro is quite interesting and if the animation quality keeps on the level of the first episode this could turn out to be solid entertainment. Aoi’s voice could be some octaves deeper though, but it’s nice to notice that I’m not too old yet to hear such high frequencies (although sometimes that might be blessing as it seems).