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AirCommodore

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Clannad

Feb 12, 2010

STORY

Upon light perusal, the story is pretty cute. A little boring, but nothing terrible. It's when you start thinking about what's happening (even just a teensy-tiny bit), that everything falls apart at the seams. What the dickens is happening and why?

How were Nagisa and Tomoya able to meet Fuuko in the first place? Scratch that, absolutely nothing in Fuuko's arch makes any sense at all. Nothing. When I wasn't rolling my eyes or staring dumbfounded at the screen, I was pretty impressed by this accomplishment.

How is Kotomi able to survive? Her financial situation is nonexistant. Why don't anyone's motivations make any sense? What does playing a basketball game have to do with establishing a club that has nothing to do with basketball or anyone on the basketball team? The entire show is full of nonsense and poorly-disguised plot-holes. It's pretty obvious that Clannad's creators think their audience is full of idiots who won't bother questioning anything that's happening. I'm not sure why nobody seems to be bothered by this.

One of the only interesting plot threads (Tomoya and his father) was completely ignored. In a very hentai-esque manner, it was used only to get Tomoya into Nagisa's house, then tossed aside.

Clannad had some funny moments (most of which were in Fuuko's arch), but I don't really like KyoAni's sense of humor, so that's another strike against the series, for me.

ANIMATION

OH GOD MY EYES!

OH GOD THEIR EYES!

Seriously though, I will never understand the character designers' reasoning behind- "We've got to make her super cute... Let's make her eyes take up half her face!". They look absolutely terrible and alien-esque. Does anyone actually find that attractive?

Aside from the horrendous character designs, the animation was pretty ok. Animation was fluid, and the backgrounds were nice. But the thing is, Clannad is a pretty character-driven anime. There are hardly any times when no characters are shown, so regardless of how nicely everything else was drawn, their disturbing faces ruin everything.

SOUND

Against my better judgement, I found the ED (the one about the Dango Family) absolutely adorable, and never skipped it once. The OP on the other hand, I couldn't manage to listen through the entire thing a single time. It was cringe-inducingly bland. I can't remember any of the insert songs, so I assume they weren't very interesting, either.

As for the voice actors: Well. The males were alright, but virtually every single female had an obnoxous too-shrill squeak. And they talked a lot. So some episodes were constant squeaking as they just tittered amoung themselves uselessly for long stretches of time. It was unpleasant.

CHARACTERS

Tomoya was alright. I can understand why people like him, especially in comparison with every other male harem lead in existance. He is significantly less useless than them. But he wasn't so great as to have a gaggle of mindless girls (one of each major character trope, how convenient!) following him around blindly and doing whatever he tells them. Hard labor? No problem! Join some club I don't care about? It's not like I have any motivations of my own!

And now we get to Nagisa, the other main character. Ugh. The girl never said anything of substance throughout the entire show. All of her dialogue could have been replaced by loud buzzing sounds or various birdcalls, and the series wouldn't have been significantly altered at all. She was offensively dull. Nagisa was also the worst ill-girl ever, as her health was only ever an issue when it would add dramatic tension to the plot. They made a huge deal of it at the beginning, and then the next episode she's acting like a normal girl and nothing in the world is wrong with her.

The creators tried to spice up the giant cast of moe archetypes by giving them all "kooky" and "unique" quirks. So-and-so is a terrible violinist! What's-her-face is obsessed with starfish! How novel! But the thing is, all of these "interesting" traits were shallow and hardly related to the character who had them. You could take all those traits and randomly re-distribute them amongst the cast, and it wouldn't make a lick of difference. They didn't turn the girls into deep characters or have any discernable impact on their personality or anything.

OVERALL

Did I miss something? I honestly cannot understand why this is one of the most beloved anime series. It was ugly, derivative, and predictable (in the few flashes of clarity when the plot was sensical).

?/10 story
?/10 animation
?/10 sound
?/10 characters
4/10 overall

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LastActionCowboy says...

The amount of "plot holes" you point out are explained in the show when they happen. I guess your intelligence level is far too low to see that.

Feb 14, 2013
Singan says...

Great review, my thoughts exactly.

Jun 7, 2012
babyyouloveit says...

I totally agree with you. I needed to find a less than good review of Clannad because I couldn't get why people liked it. Hell, I can barely get past the second episode it's so horrible. At least "Dango Daikazoku" is adorable...

Jun 5, 2012
SadisticTendencies says...

Pretty much everything you've said is true, but Clannad is still one of my guilty pleasures; it may be utterly stupid and pointless, but it's entertaining and if you try not to look into matters too closely you'll probably watch the whole thing with a silly smile on your face! So, to sum things up; I agree with all the things you complain about, but I overlooked them deliberately when I saw Clannad.

Just a side-note over something that amuses me; if this was an official review it would be an enormous troll-magnet. If you ever feel provocative you may want to write an official review for this and see the response^^

Aug 16, 2011
moni82990 says...

I thought this was a good review, and I didn't hate Clannad.

I just finished watching it 30 minutes ago, and a lot of the things you mentioned went through my head as I was watching.

It seems to me there was some serious bad writing in all of this, but I thought the show had a nice feel, nothing too special though.

1. Fukko's arc really doesn't make sense. How is it that they can meet her, befriend her, forget her, lose sight of her (literally) and then see her again? Suddenly her condition worsens and she starts to fade, yet everyone still comes to the wedding. However....they still forget her after the wedding....but she still appears randomly. And wow, they can actually see her again.

Oh, and because Nagisa and Tomoya are her closest friends they remember her and see her the longest . For some odd reason though, her sister who loves her more than anyone can't. Could it be this is because they are students? who knows. But it's a mess, constant back and forth nonsense...."I see and remember you... oh no I don't!...wait I kind of do?".What the hell is going on.

2. I agree with the eyes thing.

3. Nagisa is all for the drama club and they all praise her, but in reality she doesn't do anything to make it happen except bring up the idea and tell Tomoya how much she wants it. Just saying..

4. Nagisa inviting Tomoya to stay with her and him accepting seems off to me. It's not even that I care about the story going in that direction, it just doens't go with the flow of their actions. The way her character usually acts, it would seem she would tell him to stop running away and talk to his dad. But she tells him, 'hey come stay with me you guys need space to appreciate eachother'... She's pushing him to not run away and face the teacher all of 10 seconds before that scene.

Tomoya never wants to ask for help (for example the garden scenes) and always acts like he's okay, so I thought it would make more sense for him to say 'no' to staying with her. I guess you can push the cliche and say it's because that's the girl he likes and he might be in real need this time and let someone special like her "in". I don't know, but I think it could've been done better.

5. The Kotomi thing is also a mess, but another arc I liked. It seems the things I thought had the most potential were done poorly and half-way,then dropped and left to a possible 'might pick up later'....

How does Kotomi live alone?... maybe inheritance money okay..

She fears the man that is always looking for her (collegue of her parents) yet he is her guardian so he must've been the one taking care of her growing up. She was a little kid afterall, parents don't just die and people go 'okay here's your inheritance and house fend for yourself little girl'.... If someone else took care of her it's still weird because they don't imply she ever stopped living in her house. Even stranger, she never sees Tomoya until they are their current age but he walks by her house for some time after the fire looking for her... maybe she didn't want to come out and play?... but she tells the story like he just dumped and forgot about her but that's okay because she always treasured and remembered him...that's great and all but he was just outside your house...looking for you... A LOT... again,just saying. who knows maybe she did move?... It's all baffling.

The teddybear thing was touching too although unlikely... ahem T&K doesn't make a floating suitcase return to Japan...especially written in English.

I realize though that watching any story requires imagination, so it was nice anyway.

6. I liked the story the play was about was too, it had potential. I thought they inserted it in a creative but confusing way. They don't interwine it well because it takes a long time to figure out why there is a girl and a robot at the beggining of random episodes. Altogehter though, that was a fail because it doesn't get anywhere. The girl is alone but then she has her robot companion but 'hey want to create another robot friend, aww it didn't work out, lets sing a song and float to a better world'... I'm sure that if the solution would've been so simple she could have left a lot sooner. If the writers wanted to wrap it up happily they should've just made the other robot come to life too. sheesh.

Last, because I have over done this "comment", I don't like the Tomoya and his Dad situation. It makes sense why Tomoya would be angry at his Dad...he's a drunk, a gambler,  injured Tomoya's shoulder, doesn't have a job... However, apparently those reasons aren't entirely why Tomoya is mad... it's because he acts like his son is a stranger and seems insincere with his fake smiles? and it's all (well Tomoya seems to think/insinuates) because he hurt his shoulder and can't play basketball anymore. I don't get it, Tomoya is upset his dad acts 'nonchalant', but the dad doesn't really appear apathetic in my opinion. Tomoya is always trying to get away from him. Someone who is uninvolved and doesn't care doesn't give you a reason or need to get away from them because they don't show up...they dont' care! This could've been done a LOT better. Again, another arc with potential gone awry.

Clannad really is full of nonsense in my opinion. Despite it all, I watched the entire thing and even liked it a little. I will probably dislike it more in a week seeing as just finished watching it, but I'm going to try AfterStory anyway. I guess that's saying something.

 

 

 

Apr 14, 2011