Clannad is one of those things that some will love, some will hate.
I don't understand the hate.
Every episode gripped me (in a chokehold but whatever) and I knew I had to watch the next one. The characters were quite original and loveable!
Some would just skip this and go to After Story, but I don't recommend that. This really lets you grow a sort of friendship with the characters, because they're so real.
Incredible. Highly, highly recommended.
Final rating: 10/10.
This is a tragic and heart-felt story. I guarantee that those who like comedy with a bit of romance and a touch of tragedy will love this anime. Its full of life, and just makes you want to go, "No, don't end there!! Keep going!" I really enjoyed this anime, as much as any other. Just trust your instincts and watch this with no regrets!!
I had to buy the dvd and the after story first anime i have seen no powers or anything that intrigued me just with the story line alone crazy just absolute, I loved it and yes i cried like every fan did watching this, you were into each person and allowed to connect and feel like you where right there you could feel the pain and the love they had for one another
0 out of 7 people found this review helpful:
Everyone raves about this show, and talks about how sad it was. But I actually found it very slow paced and boring, and nothing was dramatic enough to make me cry.
I only have one friend who thought the same as I, I even watched the entire series. I might give afterstory a try since some people say it completes the show, but I'm skeptical.
1 out of 1 people found this review helpful:
I love this anime very much, it is my top favorite! It's broken into two sections. Clannad, where it is all about character build & then, Clannad: After Story, which is mainly all about Ushio. Nagisa & Tomoya's daughter. I had watched this anime at least twice now. I found it very hard to understand the first time around because if you fail to pay attention when this girl from the illusionary world, who's said to be the last human alive. A girl who is very lonely. She builds this robot to fulfill her loneliness. In this illusionary world, it explains the story as it progresses, if you take it for-granted you can easily misunderstand the story in the end.
This story is about a girl, named Nagisa, who is often sick. She is known to have a rare unknown illness that makes her ill often & makes a fever hard to go down. She was held back due to missing too many school days, so she's older than others in her grade when she meets Tomoya, in Clannad. She has her heart set on re-opening the drama club that had been closed due to lack of member's when she was out ill. Because she was held back she has no friends since they had all already graduated & some of the teachers she knew had also left in her absences. Therefore, re-opening the club has became a challenge for her, but with tomoya's help that had became a lot easier. Even though at first Tomoya was only an "outsider" in school, after meeting Nagisa they had slowly begun to make friends in the process of reviving the drama club.
In Clannad: After Story is where Ushio comes into the story, where she becomes the main focus. There is a lot of confusion at the birth of Ushio after it's known Nagisa passes away at her daughters, Ushio, birth. There on out Tomoya has a hard time finding it possible to care for Ushio so he gave her to Nagisa's parents Sanae Furukawa and Akio Furukawa. 5 years later a trip was planned by Sanae and Ushio and Tomoya left to a plan Tomoya had forgotten all about, his grandmother had told him all sort of things there. On the way back he decided to finally talk to his daughter, he told her about about her mom and his past life when they were only in high school. suddenly, not long after, Ushio was diagnose with the same rare illness her mom, Nagisa, had. Things toke a horrifying turn. The lost girl from the illusionary world started talking to Tomoya. Explaining all sort of things he did not understand. When he opened his eyes, he was in the site of Ushio's birth again. This time things where different.
The music and drawing to this anime is quite well. It blends with the story and I find the music to be very relaxing. It's hard to become "annoyed" with it. Sometime's the music can become sad, but the anime is an emotional type so it fits the script well.
I would watch this anime again for sure.
Even if you are even slightly interested in anime, the name Clannad is very familiar. Claim to fame- being one of the best sad anime there is. There is a large hype around it with one side being those who absolutely cherish it and the other side who see it as complete nonsense that is unrealistic and dumb. Well, let's see.
Note that this reviews Clannad season one only and After story is in another review or this review will be 3000 words long.
Clannad starts of with our main character- Okazaki Tomoya- meeting our main heroine- Furukawa Nagisa while going to school. This starts one of the most well-known starting dialogues of any anime and one of my favorites to date. This fated meeting then starts a series of events which change see Tomoya helping a series of people with their problems while changing himself.
Not bad. It's something expected from a harem. However, most harems are normally cheesy slice-of-life anime being too heavily based on romance or they are completely horrible *School Days!* *cough!*. Clannad does indeed have one guy with tons of girls surrounding him and it does get irritating a bit at some points but if you discard this thought in favor of the very well-written storyline, everything just becomes better. Honestly, Clannad has a very solid storyline even though it is a "girl-a-week" flow. It wraps things up well. This, in conjunction with the characters, is the reason why Clannad is so well-received by many. The characters are the reason why Clannad is deemed the saddest anime and while I disagree, it is very emotionally jerking seeing the character's past in the form of well-timed and executed flashbacks. They give you a sense of the hardships they have been through. You actually start liking some of the characters. Note the word "some". The other characters might become quite irritating after a while- especially in the 3rd quarter of the anime- where there isn't really an arc then. Anyone who has watched Clannad should know perfectly well what I'm talking about. Characters also seem to be given too much harem elements to their personality- which irritates me more. But that's exactly what Clannad is deep down- a harem.
The drama you get from the story may very well be deemed unrealistic- even I have a problem with the amount of crying in the anime- but there are some times where the drama really touches your emotions. Some of the best drama came from the scenes of Tomoya's dad appearing. It really gnaws at your heart and makes you question what a family should be.
Speaking of family, I have to offer special praise to Nagisa's parents- Akio and Sanae. This is a case where the side characters are better than the main characters. The comedy relief is always welcoming and their personalities are some of the best written in anime. They always put a smile on my face and make for the best developments in the main characters. Honestly, these 2 people deserve recognition. Humor and comedy is also something that Clannad does very well. It has imaginative ways to get you laughing even if it looks stupid (That's why!).
Going on to music. The music is not entirely Kyoto animation and loyally uses many of the original visual novel's soundtracks- most of which composed by Jun Maeda. While very good on their own, there is a feeling that they are over-used a little the more you go into the anime but when the time is right- when everything is not okay- the music hits home.
The animation is surprisingly not that good for a work of Kyoto animation. The character designs aren't the best and the crying scenes made me facepalm myself (after I keep back my own tears) by the fact that it is so unrealistic. This, however, could be more attributed to Key's animation and not Kyoani's. Because if Kyoani had their way, it would probably be 300 times more moe. The background scenes are, however, beautiful to look at and everything is colorful and bright. Good thing.
To round it off, Clannad has quite a few problems but is a very good anime nevertheless. It is a sad anime but not depressing in the sense of Elfin Lied type. The themes in this anime are something you can relate to your own life and other's. It does promise what it says on the box and I give it a good recommendation. I can see why it was so popular. While season one by itself is only just on the level of "very good" (like, just touching), there is something that makes it a lot, lot greater than all the others. Season 2- After Story.
1 out of 1 people found this review helpful:
The problem with reviewing a show like Clannad is having to divorce yourself from the outcome you wanted to have happen and look only at the show as it was presented. When it comes to the audience having strong opinions as to how things should have concluded, from my experience this show routinely ends up firmly in the debate with different camps fervently supporting their particular "Clannad" girl and why she should have been the one to "win". Now despite the fact that this show is widely discussed and clips of all types are available on video sharing sites I will still do my best to not spoil anything for those who want to experience Clannad with fresh eyes, but do be warned I am no professional so I may inadvertently spoil something unintentionally so you have been cautioned. One final thing only from a point of personal opinion, DO NOT play the visual novel before watching the show as the show, due to necessity, has to gloss over some of the alternate arc elements in order to tell its version of the story and it does so in ways that will be disappointing if you've played the visual novel beforehand.
This is a very complex and very long story with a separate story running along side that does factor into the conclusion of the series (Clannad: Afterstory) but to avoid spoilers that is all I'll say about that. The most basic breakdown is: a disillusioned unmotivated high school senior is looking to trudge through one final year of school before entering adulthood with no real goal or hopes in mind when through a chance encounter he comes across a person that feels equally alienated from the school and her classmates. The two learn to lean on and support each other throughout various situations that occur until finally realizing that their friendship has gently swung from casual to serious without either of them really being aware of what was happening, finally climaxing in a moment that was a surprise to no one but themselves. This story is not flawless, but my only major nitpick would be the recycling of a major plot element from a previous work (Kanon 2006) when the previous telling of that "arc" was much more emotionally significant than the Clannad version.
The animation is very good and is both dynamic and consistent, I've just been spoiled by projects from P.A. Works and therefore can not bring myself to give it a perfect 10. That being said the use of lighting and effects is masterfully done to seem grounded when the story requires it to be and dreamlike when that is appropriate.
The sound is really good both in Japanese and in English but here is another place where you should be careful to no play the visual novel beforehand since you will get a mindset of how the characters sound and interact that the show does not fully capture. The best example of this disparity would be the visual novel Kotomi Ichinose is perfect and was not the same Kotomi in the show either in Japanese and definitely not in English, whereas the English Kyou Fujibayashi is completely made of win. Sub or dub you really can not go wrong with either for this show.
I have to be ridiculously vague in this section to both avoid plot spoilers and because the characters in Clannad are so dynamic that there is no way to full describe them without having to write a term paper on each one. I will also only cover the most significant characters as this show boasts a trainload of characters who all serve to expand and deepen an already dynamic storyline. That being said sound the spoiler alarm just in case.
Tomoya Okazaki - The previously mentioned disillusioned and unmotivated main character of the show who through a chance encounter with a classmate on the road to school one day sets in motion a chain of events that ends up reshaping his world view and redefining him as a person. He may be the best main character in terms of establishment and development I have seen thus far and easily trumps the two other male leads of the Kyoto Animation "holy trinity" (Air, Kanon, Clannad).
Nagisa Furukawa - A high school student who is effectively one grade behind due to repeated bouts of long term illness that threaten both her education and her life on occasion. She is shy and lacks self-confidence and may serve as the weakest character in the story as her submissive nature sometimes comes across as more annoying than the author intended as her meekness seems to come and go more as the plot requires than as would be fitting for her current point of emotional development.
Fuuko Ibuki - A quiet odd girl obsessed with starfish who will sometimes go into a trance-like state when her cuteness/happiness circuitry overloads. Her goal is to utilize hand carved starfish to serve as defacto invitations to her older sister's wedding. She is quirky and odd and immediately endearing but more so as the eccentric friend/little sister than a believable love interest.
Youhei Sunohara - Tomoya's best friend and reality anchor dispelling sound advice when called for but mostly serving as comic relief. His misadventures become permanently etched in the viewer's minds as comedic mastery and while they do attempt to provide him with some level of depth over the course of the story at least in Clannad he stays a mostly a humorous sidekick.
The Girl and The Robot - Despite having no interaction with the characters these two characters inhabit the second story that runs alongside the main one and to avoid spoiling anything I can tell you nothing more about them except to say their lack of development is intentional and essential to the overall series. When the pieces fall into place, it will all make sense and at least the first time will floor the viewer.
Ryo Fujibayashi - The technically younger twin of the Fujibayashi sisters who is painfully shy and also an avid fortune teller though her accuracy rate is suspect at best. She is much more developed in the visual novel than the show and to really understand her inner workings I would have to direct the viewer to the visual novel as she has a very deep personality and makeup that is only hinted at during the series.
And now for the quote unquote big three...
Tomoyo Sakagami - A recent transfer student attempting to rebuild her image and also working towards a goal of saving a local grove of trees that have significance to her. She is a strong willed pseudo vigilante who uses her vast arsenal of martial arts skills to protect herself and the locals from thugs and ruffians. This is also while she is trying to both emphasize and be accepted for her femininity and also achieve a place on the student council where she feels her position will assist her goal of saving the tree grove she holds sacred. There is much much more here but it would take a short novel to cover it all.
Kotomi Ichinose - A socially awkward loner who prefers the company of books to other people and while she is a virtual genius does not even understand the basics of social interaction. She is perpetually tormented by events of the past and her arc in the series is vastly inferior to the visual novel and like Ryo Fujibayashi to truly experience who Kotomi is you have to play the VN. That being said she still is one of the most tear inducing characters when everything comes together. Also violin = death of thousands.
Kyou Fujibayashi - The older of the Fujibayashi twins though it is never established why she deems herself as such though her super tsundere personality and hyper protective nature of her friends and especially her sister Ryo allow the audience to gloss past that point. She is constantly torn between being a tomboy and wearing her heart on her sleeve and this duality makes her that much better as you watch her try to keep her distance when all she really wants to do admit things she could never allow herself to say out loud. Interestingly enough her character in the visual novel changes depending on which route you choose to follow in one being the Kyou we know from the show and in another route being a pervy lesbian which also fits her personality surprisingly well.
What else is there to say except I can not recommend this show highly enough. As I said though play the visual novel only after watching the show as the retelling of some of the alternate story arcs in the show necessarily leave many things out that will leave you disappointed slightly. If you are a fan of romance anime this is a must watch/own.
Just for the sake of stating the obvious Kyou Fujibayashi is my #1 "Clannad" girl.
1 out of 1 people found this review helpful:
The title of this might be misleading to this review, but I assure you it isn't. This anime truly had a great plot that no one couldn't go without tearing at least once. I'm a guy and I could vouch for how touching this anime really was (No, I'm not gay!). Each character had a problem of their own and the protagonist of the story would find more than 1 or 2 ways to solve it. The adventure that he goes through for his friends are beyond that of what an average person would do. Every character had a really sad story, and being the hero of the story he fixed all of them, ended up getting the girl, and still had a great life! Usually when people see an improbable task, they would say, "I'm not Superman ya' know!" Well in this case, the protagonist was more than "Superman"! I haven't watched the after series, or the OVA's, but just after seeing all 24 episodes of the original series I will definitely be watching everything! This anime deserves much more than just 5 measly stars.
Clannad is a lovely, touching story that I recommend all the time. I managed to hold in my emotions through the first season, but I broke down during "Clannad: After Story". Even if it's sad, once you've finished watching you really appreciate how good it is and how everything has a meaning by the end.
That said, Clannad is best watched all in one sitting, or at the very most, two. The saddest moments in the series take many episodes to build up before they happen and to really enjoy this Anime to it's fullest, you need to have all that emotion fresh in your mind. If you haven't watched it yet, find yourself 19 hours in a row that you're free, or 2 days in a row with 9-10 hours each and watch it. I can't say you won't be sorry you did, because at some point you probably will be, but stick it through and you'll be happy you watched. :)
Also, the part with the robot will make sense eventually, just keep watching.
1 out of 1 people found this review helpful:
Well, this is practically my first venture into the Key/Kyoto trilogy of moe anime known as Air, Kanon and Clannad and since they have no connection with each other aside from them animated by the same production company, based by the same visual novel publisher, and have some of the same traits, I can watch each show in whatever format I want, but why would I want to review Clannad first? I don’t know either. I’m just going to review this first.
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.
Well, I know the first thing to say about this and it is…..highly emotional and often very cute and adorable (which is what they also trying to achieve, too), but when I watched the anime, I often get confused in which storyline of which character to follow as all of them do have something to contribute, although for me, I have lost track of whose story to follow most of the time. Plus, when I say it’s highly emotional, it can be too forced as in they should expect you to care about them instantly, either by playing sad music to compliment that. Don’t get me wrong, I do care about what happens to some of the characters but whatever situation is easily being overdramatized as it goes and that often make me not give a damn anymore. However, as overly dramatic as it is, the story arcs are fine and while being nothing new about self-confidence, family, abandonment issues (let’s face it, nothing is new nowadays) but the situation is mostly relatable for those (mostly anyone) who have been through those situations like that.
The characters are the basic anime archetypes but they are livelier than they sound. Tomoya Okazaki is the main character with a basic awful past (his mother died, father is a drunk and gambler and they don’t get along, mostly Tomoya) but he is less stiff and can actually be a funny character once you get into the show and his friend Sunohara is more of a comic relief than him, but is actually the punching bag of the show, although he did deserve it many times and what can I say? It’s funny to laugh at his pain. The main female characters are those that either have a crush or want to be in love with Tomoya and unlike any harem anime, it isn’t overly annoying. Nagisa Furukawa is the main heroine of the anime, who’s in her 3rd year of high school because of her illness of the “Um?” disease. (I called it the ‘um?’ disease because I honestly don’t know what she got. That and somebody already used ‘butt cancer’ in their review.) That and her parents are outrageous, especially the father, who looks younger than he is. Kyou and Ryou Fujibayashi are sisters with Kyou being the aggressive one and Ryou being the timid one. Tomoyo Sakagami is the one that gets into a lot of fights in the school, mostly with delinquents and occasionally beats up Sunohara because of his stupidity and for kicks…..and yet I love that about her. Kotomi Ichinose is another schoolmate, who is a very quiet girl but when she plays the violin, get some earplugs or far, far, far away from that and lastly there’s Fuko Ibuki, the first year student who really likes to make starfishes and carves them out of wood and sell them a lot in the school and yes, I know of that twist of hers and no, I’m not going to spoil it.
The animation by Kyoto Animation does deserves some high marks as since their bread and butter are slice of life shows and their budget is high enough to make their animation lively, fluid, and beautiful to look at. Although, their character designs are the basic moe design, even on Sunohara, and I think they made some of the adults too identical to the teenagers as I couldn’t tell who’s older or younger, aside from a few characters. The music also gets a decent mark as I thought the score was remarkably well, even if it gets repetitive. The OP song is okay but nothing to remember unlike the ED song, which every reviewer I know likes this song, and I also do but I felt after most episodes, it felt inappropriate to play, especially if an episode ends on a bad or sour note. I know it’s meant to be uplifting but it doesn’t end you should play it on every single time.
The English dub by Sentai Filmworks has some great performances from Luci Christian (Nagisa), Hilary Haag (Fuko), David Matranga (Tomoya) and Shirley Calene-Black (Kyou) but aside from that, it was either a so-so dub that was rated to OK (The performances I listed above)-to-awkward (the adaptive script to other performances like Greg Ayres)-to-bad (most Japanese mispronunciations).
FINAL VERDICT: Clannad is a very emotional anime series that can tug to your heart but often feels too forced to care about the characters but it doesn’t stop you from watching it. It’s both funny and dramatic and I may not be the biggest fan of this, but you should probably give this show a chance before rejecting it.