Note: Minor spoilers in this reveiw, nothing that will make you enjoy the anime any less though.
Also, just know this. I strongly urge you to pay close attention to the actions and way the robot and the girl in the other world act towards each other, and the type of relationship they seem to develop. You'll thank me later.
First, i'll say that this reveiw will be for the first season of clannad AND after story, i am just writing it under after story because after story was a bit better. Ah...Clannad...Where shall i start? This anime will show you tears, screams, and even laughter. I guess i can start off by explaining this anime in one word,
Oh wait, that was 4... Anyways, i saw this anime a few years ago, and i'll admit i was a bit skeptical at first, as it seemed it had an extremely slow development and a boring plot. Back then i thought it was just going to be another anime about friends trying to start up a school club, of which i've seen many of before. But no, it's much MUCH more then that... Starting with the opening scene, brilliant. The way it overlooks the town and exclaims tomoyas life and his veiw on it, how he doesn't have any interest in life anymore, sets the stage for the rest of the anime perfectly. Normal people might be tempted to stop after the first episode, but hang on, the directors of this anime brilliantly keep you hooked enough so that you can drench through the somewhat boring parts, using my favorite character in all of anime, sunohara. Sunohara is definatly the FUNNIEST anime character i have ever seen. He shows up in the best of times as the comic releif, and just drops down the funniest phrases that'll have you laughin all day. He's not always a clown though, he can be serious to a point where you think it's not even him anymore, showing that theres always more then 1 side to anyone. The first season of Clannad basically has a more casual approach, it has a few tearjerker moments like the time when you realize the love between the two main characters. All in all, it's full of laughter, tears (FUKO!!!!), and a hint of romance.
Clannad: After Story
This section will probably have a few more spoilers, but i'll be sure to post SPOILER before the sentence.
Oh boy, Clannad: After Story... This is where the Sh*t hits the fan. Sunohara doesn't come short again, he's still funny as ever, yet serious and caring when needed. All the characters have graduated from high school, each going their own way to find a job or go to university, except for one. The main focus of this season though, (Spoil) is the love between tomoya and nagisa, the two main characters. Season 1 ends with them proclaiming their love and going out, and in season 2 they go much farther. This season, besides their relationship, also focuses on tomoyas life after school. His job, everyday problems that normal people have with money, finding a place to live, settling down with his family. Then, about halfway through season 2, a huge step happens. (SPOIL) Nagisa is pregnant and gives birth to their daughter Ushio. Sadly though, Nagisa doesn't make it through the birth, and dies. This is the moment in After Story where you just know the rest of the anime is gonna be a rollercoaster of tears and cries. EVERYTHING from here and makes you whimper. At the end of season 2, you find out just what the little girl in the other dimension and the robot mean, and it'll astound you.(SPOIL) At the very end, theres a sort of cryptic ending as you see fuko run towards the forest, saying a little girl is calling to her. In the forest is the girl from the other dimension lying on the floor, and fuko approaches her as if she knows her, and says everything will be alright.
All in all, this anime is a MUST WATCH for everyone, even if you're not into the romantic field. It'll change the way you think about some things in life and leave you with some tears, wishing there was another season. If you've already seen this anime and you're confused about the ending, scroll down and i'll explain some confusing things.
Okay, so the little girl and the robot first. This is often the most confusing part for people who don't watch the anime closely. Throughout the anime, season 1 and 2, you see the robot and the girl develop somewhat of a father daughter association, as the robot seems to be comforting the girl. An obvious realization of this is in the last episode of the second season when the world is being destroyed, after tomoya "wished" that everything was back to normal. The world that the girl and the robot lived in symbolized tomoyas fantasy world, where the glowing balls symbolize wishes. It was a world that held all his "wishes" that he gathered up, through the legend of the town for doing good deeds/caring for others. As he makes his wish, the other world is destroyed and you hear the little girl tell the robot that they will meet again in another world someday, and she calls him "daddy." After this we can easily infer that the little girl is meant to symbolize Ushio, the daughter, and the robot is meant to be Tomoya.
Hope that clears some things up, if anyone has any other questions about absolutely anything in Clannad, then leave me a messege<33