Wednesday, 9 January 2013

Completed: Clannad

now... i've watched this show a few times (i think this is the 5th time? possibly only 4th) However it's the first time i've watched it since doing these little written blurbs...

So here we go!
I will be covering both seasons as their own thing cause even thought they are similar there was a chunk of time between the two so i have different likes and dislikes...

Now when i hear people say the title of the show they pronounce it like Clah-NAH-d with major emphasis on the second syllable... i get why they do this but it sounds so strange to me so i just default to the fact that despite it being an Irish word the show is japanes therefor I say it like Cla-nad no emphasis on any one part of the word (because ku-ra-na-do doesn't have any emphasis within the word....)
and none of this matters cause it's written not spoken i just wanted to talk about the one thing everyone disagrees with me on.... i agree i'm probably in the wrong... i don't care... i will continue to pronounce it the way i do until someone proves with hard fact that i am mistaken.

okay back on track.

Clannad is simply the story of Okazaki, a boy who is tired of living in a town her hates, and Nagisa, a girl who despite certain issues loves the town, and how they help each other grow and be stronger.
oh and there are 5 other girls there..... yay for anime based off dating sims.
well... 'technically a dating sim' is a better way to put it since apparently of all the Key/Visual arts games it's one of the tamest, i don;t really know... i don't play dating sims.

So like a dating sim/visunal novel game each character has their own story and the way this show handles it is through certain arcs going through there tale.... in the first season there is an extra episode where he picks a different girl from Nagisa and normally i would cry fould to this but in this show showing the alternate stries is a plot device.

yes this is the first of two things where i have seen the multiple endings being used as an in game/show plot element... and i love it (fun fact the other this is 999: 9 Persons  9 Hours 9 Doors, out of the two 999 does it better but still both are good)

ok... back on track...

so the other element that is used in the show is levels of saturation to show how the main character sees the word. It's not terribly subtle but i feel it's used estremly effectively. when we first meet him the world is pretty crazy and almost fuzzy as if he isn't able to see the buety in his surroundings cause he is so miserable But then he seems Nagisa at the bottom of the hill asking herself if she likes the school and the colour suddenly brightens up when he helps convince her to go up the hill. Maybe it's just the fact that i'm an artist and i love anything and everything to do with colour Psychology but i just feel like it's used so well.

Another example is later in the show theres a basketball game, Okazaki has an injury that makes the sport difficult for him to play and they are about to lose the game, he gets knocked down while holding the ball and has a bit of an inner monologue about how it's all hopeless, why is he even trying, what could he possibly accomplish and while he things this time slows and everything greys out again, then when Nagisa calls out to him he decided to give it a shot anyways and the colour all returns simply because he tried. This was actualyl the moment that helped me decide that i love this show and it's always one of my favs.

i'm still not talking about the good and the bad yet... hm... OKAY one more story.
So after i bought the DVDs (which were kinda pricy for something that was Sub only and Sentai has since releaed a dub which is okay but a little strange) i lent it to a friend and told her "don't worry.... nothing too sad happens in season one.... it's after story you gotta worry about..."
Then i rewatched it... and i apologized to her cause even the Fuko arc (fun fact my least fav of all the arcs) made me tear up.
This show is sad, it's actually more sad upon rewatching and seeing all the hints they give you to how they plan to rip out your heart later. however this season just gets me a little teary eyes and not much more.

um.. okay yeah thast all the stories i have.... for this season.

The Good:
Animation is Lovely, it's so bright and colourful and all the characters are distinctive. I do laught that the character Fuko says okazaki's best freind has impossible hair cause he's blond but The twins and the girl genius all have purple hair and that raises no comments at all. Hell Okazaki has blue hair.... all colours i'm pretty sure you dont find in hair naturally... oh course i get what they are saying cause the boy actually dyes his hair to get it to be blond but still.

Music is great, some of the songs like To same hights get me ready to draw and other songs like snowfield make me stop and think. The intro song is really nice as we and the ending song is cute and isn't too jarring to hear when you are crying cause the last episode was heartwarming.

The characters, aside from Fuko, are really interesting and all have reason and motivation to act the way they do. i believe that these people could be a motley crew of friends just trying to get through the year and still have fun.

The not so good:
Some acts are too long *cough Fuko Cough* some are too short and when they end thast kinda it *cough kotomi Cough)
The show at times is a bit moe for my taste with all the girls being pigeon toed and a little doting on Okazaki (it is the everyone loves okazaki/okazaki fixes all things show at some points HOWEVER when he picks a girl the others back off and that's something you don't tend to see in romance shows) but in all fairness none of the characters are pointless... even sunohara who is a moron can be surprisingly sharp and sweet and caring.

The Bad:
If i hadn't made it clear by now there is one characetr i just don't like.
Fuko is just this ditzy moe blob who acts more as comedy relief for the first half of the season... now this would be find if she only showed up occasionally but again her arc is a large chunk of the season... and even after her arc is done she randomly appears only to vanish seconds later and have no one ever mention it again. she's not entirely pointless but so much attention is put on her and she's pretty much just a glorified side character (who gets more important in season two but we are not talking about that yet)
Now i don't hate her i just wish there wasn't so much focus on her....

OKAY.... from this point on i may spoil a few key plot lines to Season 1 so this is your only warning.... considering i've watched the show 5 times just assume that i like it a lot

Clannad: ~After Story~

So Nagisa and Okazaki are now dating. Yay~
But they are awkward and shy... Awwww~
and he's living with her and her family cause his family situation is awkward *tears up*
so this season mostly takes place in Okazaki's final year of highschool onward since he is planning to spend the rest of his life with Nagisa.
And everything looks so happy other then Nagisa is sickly and has to repeat her final year again... but thats not too bad...
everything still happy and fun...
until Key/visual arts rip your heart from your chest and squeeze it just cause they can.

This season is almost completely tearful... at first cause it's touching and sweet but it quickly goes into the "why would you even do that to me?" territory.
like i said before i do tend to cry easily but this show is the only show (well was until the going home chapters of natsume yuukinchou) to get that whimpery sob out of me.. .that sob that i hope no one hears cause they will think i am just incredibly sad.
lets just sad i made the mistake of watching episode 16 right before heading off to work...
yeah..... that was..... not a good idea...

again it uses saturation to show the main characters mood and feelings towards the town and gain the animation is lovely..... but.... i'll touch more on that later.

I don't have as many stories with this cause really all i remember is crying during almost every episode.... except the first one cause it's trying to show you it's not gunna be so bad. i do remember waiting and being excited to get my hands on the show.

The good:
Music, oh that intro song is so sad once you read the lyrics and so pretty, everything is still bright and colourful and since we've already spents 26 episodes with these people we get even more room for character devlopment.... also no Fuko till the end chuk pf the season.... YAY.

The not so good:
So inbetween Season 1 and season 2 a certain show was made by Kyoto Animation...
and i blame that show for pretty much ruining everything Kyo Ani has done since.... i am talking about K-on.
now i bitched about k-on plenty in my top ten things that annoy me so i'll be brief here... Every animation house has a certain style thats a mix of the original art as well as the houses style...... Until K-on was made in which every subsequent show  has a very specific style to the eyes, body, hands and overall movement..... and i HATE the look....
It really only affected two shows that i watch (This one and Melancholy of haruhi suzumiya) and in this ones case it was just a matter of motions getting a little more floaty and kind of lazy and moe however this show benefited because the faces became way more emotive.... but still the final product doesn't looks as good as the first season in my opinion. so yeah it would have been in the bad section of my blurbs but some good did come of it.

The Bad:
while not terrible theres one relationship i don't think they focus on enough for someone whos grown up in a western audience to get...
Okazaki and his father do not get along. Apparently he and his dad get into a fight before the show and it ruins Okazaki;s chance to play basketball cause he can't raise his right arm... however we we see him with his dad his father is always smiling and trying to be kind and give the boy his space... we never see any of the negative so it's hard to see why he hates him so much.... i mean i buy it... i do... i just feel liek that arc could have had more impact then it ends up having simply because i can't tell why okazaki feels like his father treats him like a stranger... the only difference i noticed is that when he's older he refers to him as tomoya-kun instead of just tomoya...
the only reason i even picked up on that is cause okazaki does not use any honorifics to anyone his age or that he's remotely close to.
but i still don't know if thats just me overanalysing of it thats actually the reason...

so it's not bad it's just.... i'm not equip with the proper knowledge to understand the full situation.

Also torch is way to happy a song to end the episode with when you are bawling like a baby.

if you hate shows that make you cry... do not watch this...
but it's really good and really well done and even if you don't like this genre you will probably enjoy this series because the dating sim aspect is actually kinda played down... especially once he picks Nagisa... then it just become Okazaki and Nagisa life out the rest of their life together.

also theres a side story oh a girl in a world thats ended... i'm not sure if it's done in 3d or at a higher frame count but wow are those scenes lovely and i didn't expect the twist at the end.... or the fact that Okazaki was wrong about what they would sing and nagisa was completely right.

but yeah... great show, one of my personal favs
now onto watch macross (cause i'm not sure if i've talked about it here....)

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