Tomoya Okazaki is a third year high school student resentful of his life. His mother passed away from a car accident when he was younger, causing his father to resort to alcohol and gambling. This results in fights between the two until Tomoya’s shoulder is injured in a fight. Since then, Tomoya has had distant relationships with his father, causing him to become a delinquent over time. While on a walk to school, he meets a strange girl named Nagisa Furukawa who is a year older, but is repeating due to illness. Due to this, she is often alone as most of her friends have moved on. The two begin hanging out and slowly, as time goes by, Tomoya finds his life shifting in a new direction. Source: AnimeNewsNetwork.com
First 2 episodes and I knew that it was an anime I would have regretted missing. Clannad is one superb anime being able to be soothing yet heavy. Filled with emotions and does a proper job of passing on what it’s trying to express. Definitely one of the best tear-jerker animes yet. Throughout the series, I couldn’t help but wonder if the intro scenes of the other world and the girl and robot will play any role in the main story. No slapstick comedy here, just simple sarcastic replies which were very good and funny. Well… maybe a little slapstick here and there, mostly coming from Sunohara. Whereas Tomoya is more of the sarcastic cool type. I could tell more about the characters, but I couldn’t do that without giving at last some hints of spoilers. And I really really think you need to watch this one for yourself. So I’ll take a pass on character introductions. It really is THAT good!
Expect to get wet droopy eyes within every 3 episodes or so. Whether it be of joy or sadness. Clannad will take you on a roller coaster ride and fill you with emotions. It can make you feel extremely happy and terribly sad and it can do both in a single episode. It scares me to think I may not find a better storytelling anime than Clannad. The script and way the story was told was just so crazily flawless.
Remember how I once complained in Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya about how characters lack depth in terms of family or background wise? Well, Clannad really shows how it’s done! Most characters had their family background at least a little developed. Tomoya and his dad, Nagisa and her family, Kotomi and her family, Sunohara and his sister, and others. And now compare it with an anime without any relevant scenes of the main casts’ family. See my point? It really makes the character come alive with feelings as viewers can understand and can relate them to their family.
The animation is also really good. Pay close attention and I could notice how detailed the scenes were. Really enhanced each scenes and the mood it was bringing in the viewers. Initially the face of the characters looked a little weird to me. Seemed like their eyes were too far apart and really too big, especially Nagisa. But I am glad that I got used to it and really enjoyed it later on. Started to get all Moe over it even.
The opening theme, Megumeru-cuckool mix 2007, and the scenes of the other world brought about a serious feel to the anime. Not that the anime needed it, all throughout the episodes you can already feel it’s a very mature series. Very settling and comfortable. Anyone thinks that the opening theme reminds them of Noein? Sounded slightly similar to me and kept bringing up Noein memories to me.
The ending theme, Dango Daikazuku, was really nice and soothing. Definitely a must have! And the BGM, oh my god! It was superb. Every tune felt so touching. Every time a BGM played to a scene, I would get Goosebumps or wet eyes guaranteed. Yet another perfect aspect of Clannad!
Episode 14 also showed an important part of character scripting. In earlier episodes, the anime introduced Nishima Rie, a character with just a few scenes. Seemed like someone you can ignore. But during later episodes, Nishima was brought out again. This time playing a bigger role in the current storyline. The thing is, because Nishima was already slightly explored in the earlier episodes, viewers can already relate to her without needing a reintroduction which would be just a waste of episode. Triple Thumbs Up!
The first few episodes introduced this anime’s cast. Another Thumbs Up! As every character had a role to play and was significant. In no way were any of the characters redundant. Episode 5 to 9 showed Fuko’s story. It was so touching! I have honestly NEVER cried so much from watching an anime before. Come to think of it, I have never cried so much from watching ANYTHING before, no movies, no live series, none! Definitely get a tissue box ready by your side. Episode 10 and it was back to the funnies. This time with the story surrounding Kotomi and her violin wielding powers Lol! It did a good job of lifting up the mood again from the sense of loss after watching the conclusion of Fuko’s story at episode 9. By episode 12, a slight mystery develops based on Kotomi’s and Tomoya’s past and their relationship to one another. Keep an eye out for a special appearance in episode 12. And yet again, without failure another beautiful story is put together for the ending of Kotomi’s storyline in episode 14. The episodes after that seemed like it had a bit of everything, from Tomoya’s background to the development of the Theatre Club. Episode 17 and finally Tomoya starts to consider his true feelings and how everyone around him was starting to express their feelings for him in a more direct way. That ends somewhat good as the series starts to explore Nagisa’s past in episode 19, setting up for the final storyline. And also finally! The mystery of the other world with the girl and the robot starts to unfold. The anime felt climaxed at episode 22 and was just playing episode 23 out. That is the only slight fuss I have for Clannad. I really feel that they could have milk more tears out of episode 22, maybe by having the story use the final episode slot as well. Otherwise, it’s just perfect.
Erm… Anyone noticed the new Honda Civic drive by at episode 21? Lol! Just something to share. Felt like an “Easter egg” of some sort.