TV-PG | 05 October 2007 (USA)

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    This story has more twists and turns than a second-rate soap opera.

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    As somebody who had not heard any of this before, it became a curious phenomenon to sit and watch a film and slowly have the realities begin to click into place.

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    Erica Derrick

    By the time the dramatic fireworks start popping off, each one feels earned.

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    This is a dark and sometimes deeply uncomfortable drama

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    Japan's favourite slice of life series, Clannad rises and falls on its oversized heart and untainted emotional grace. Infused with bits of magic realism, the show is some kind of a daydream; a story where everyone wins and gets what they want at a cost of virtually nothing.the protagonist is Okazaki Tomoya. He is unmotivated and depressed, (although he never seems that way) but things get turned around after he makes friends at his new high school. How perfect is it that all the girls in the show are drawn to him. One girl however stands out. Nagisa is an angel face with a heart to match, the kind of girl that is too impossibly perfect. The fact that she seems small enough to be his little sister is somewhat distracting once it becomes obvious that they are heading towards being a couple. What is important however is that they get along perfectly, it is everything but a forced relationship. And yet Nagissa is strangely underwhelming as a character simply because she has no flaws. She is precious, and not much else.When it comes to art, few animated shows paint with sunlight as vividly as Clannad. This is a world where the sky is always blue in the day and golden in the evening. Even more extraordinary however is how the show has a way of summoning beauty out of the mundane; out of the flies hovering around a street lamp, or the quaint naturalism of the bakery that Nagissa's family owns, or in the elegant minimalism of a traditional Japanese bedroom. If you are anything but a 12 year old girl, comedy goes further than drama in this series. Sakagami has the same angel face as all the other girls but she can drop kick any of the boys in the school out a window. Ichinosuke's violin playing is a riot and Nagissa's mom who is unflinchingly over sensitive about her baking is adorable. But the problem with Clanaad is it has an ongoing feeling of sameness. Everybody is generous everyday 24/7. There is little in the way of depth or drama. The introverted Ichinosuke has a shadowy intriguing backstory that far surpasses what the show writes for everyone else. Individual scenes and sometimes even episodes play well on the grounds of charm, but the whole series tastes of too much sugar.

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    clannad is a very great anime. I recommend it to anyone. It has comedy and romance and just about everything. The first season isn't as romantic as the second season afterstory. But its very very good. I was amused during every episode. I do have to warn you. It is a sad anime. I would be lying if I told you I didn't almost cry multiple times. But don't let this keep you from watching the anime. It is definitely worth watching. I give clannad 5 out of 5 starts and two thumbs up. Also it is a relatively clean anime. So if you are looking for some time to get drawn into a great TV show. Then clannad is definitely your type of anime. Enjoy

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    This dude goes to school, and meets some people. This chick beats the CRAP! out of everyone. This one chicks all naieve but her parents kick hind quarters. And then there's this one crazy CHICKh. Oh yeah, DANGO! DANGO! DANGO! FREAKING DANGO!!! I think it;s symbolic or something. But anyway they all make friends and go to school and beat up bikers and stuff like that. So you would think they all stay happy and live on with babies and stuff, RIGHT!?WRONG!!!!!!Everyone DIES AND THE CRAZY CHICK GOES ON AND ON ABOUT THIS HUIGE ROBOT IN A DEAD PLANET AND YOU START CRYING AND WANT TO THROW YOURSELF IN A BUCKET OF RAZOR BLADES AND THEN ROLL NAKED IN SALT. The end.

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    This is a review of both 'Clannad' and 'Clannad Afterstory', if your wondering.Story: Based on the visual novel of the same name, 'Clannad' tells the story of Tomoya Okazaki, a former basketball player who had been forced to quit his school team and all of basketball, and who's now going through life aimlessly. With him on this downward spiral is his 'friend' Sunohara, a former soccer player who had also been forced from his team, after he had attacked his coach; it's hard to tell what their relationship actually amounts to, though that'll be mentioned in a minute. Okazaki has to go up this hill to get to school; one day he meets this girl, who's standing along the path, who asks him if he'd go up it with her. This incident sparks a kind of chain-reaction. Okazaki develops a relationship with this mysteriously gentle Nagisa Furukawa, her family, others from his school and all of these girls who all, in normal harem fashion, fall in love with him. Simple enough. Of course, the visual novel this is based after was developed by 'Key', and in true 'Key' fashion, the story doesn't end too happily, or begin happily, as a matter of fact. After a while, what little which has been established is fully revealed to us, like why Okazaki isn't playing basketball anymore or why Nagisa talks with him. It's not depressing. Sad maybe? It's ending isn't depressing either; it may even make you smile, while your crying manly tears (or maybe that's just me). That's not to say the story isn't fun either, in fact there's more of an emphasis on comedy than on romance, and for a harem, the humor's pretty smart. There are laugh-out-loud worthy scenes to be had, if your interested, and when I say Tomoya's living life aimlessly, I'm not saying he's moping. He's sad and depressed of course, but he manifests it by playing pranks on others; he mentally tortures Sunohara, in particular, and all with this sarcastic smile. Getting past that and going back to the romance and this whole emphasis on 'family', the whole production has this warm, genuine heart to it. Unlike with most other harem shows, this develops it's heroines (if only just enough) to all be likable instead of just setting up some caricatures to drool over. Okazaki himself defies how a male lead in a harem should be by not being a completely unlikable failure, and then comes when you try to decide the story's genre; there's romance and comedy, but then there's fantasy and tragedy thrown in, and then there's the drama-club plot that's been developing this whole time. It accumulates back to this being a very comfortable/nice show (in tone and story and it's production-style) to watch, which ought to get you emotionally involved, if only a little.Production: The music score sounds like something from a visual novel (no shock there). The opening looks like something from one as well (maybe it's the same opening as the game's; I don't know). This was produced by Kyoto animation in between making 'Lucky Star' and 'K-ON!', and it shows; it tries looking like the visual novel and that works, and the actual animation is very fluent, like everything after Lucky Star, though not so much as K-ON!'s. Conclusion: A sometimes visually breath-taking show with simple but engaging intertwining stories and characters, who could've been forgettable but who are handled by obviously talented writers (I mean, it was written by Key, the people who did 'Air', would did you expect?).

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