#7: Clannad + After Story
(Spoilers ahead, you have been warned)
So, Clannad and I have an interesting relationship. It’s the show that probably sat on my PTW the longest compared to my desire to watch it. It was two years after I first created my MAL when I finally sat down and watched Clannad, thanks to the urging of a good friend. I had meant to watch Clannad for a long time, but always chose to start something else instead. Looking back, I feel like the wait and build-up was far worth it. Clannad, especially After Story, was one of the most touching and heartfelt anime I’ve ever seen and it is easily a show that I consider very special to my heart now. Considering the show’s heavy focus on family, in particular similarities between my relationship in my youth with my father and Tomoya’s with his, the show had a chance to tell some very deep and thought-provoking themes, which it pulled off with aplomb. As a show, it has been one of the shows that has gripped my emotions the most since I first started watching anime and elicited a full range of emotions from me throughout my time with it.
There are a lot of things I absolutely love about Clannad. The first season brought a focus on each different girl in the show’s main cast, giving each their own arc and character development and each girl had their own chance in the spotlight. While some may have been superior to others, each had a heartfelt message behind it and touched on different routes from its visual novel source. The second season, however, focused in far more on the relationship between Tomoya and Nagisa, as well as the two with their family, which is where I feel the show really shines. The stories told and the ideas conveyed are compelling and emotionally charged in their own, with Tomoya’ s conflicting relationship with his father and the growing relationship between Tomoya and Nagisa. Things only continued to ramp up during the second season and there were several moments that left me a broken teary mess.
Favorite Episode: After Story Episode 19, “The Road Home”
So, there is a big reason Episode 19 of After Story takes its place as my favorite episode of the series. The overarching plot point of Tomoya’s relationship with his father is one I was able to relate very heavily with, as my relationship with my father wasn’t exactly the best (though not to the same extent). The resolution of this arc is probably a defining moment of the series’ focus on family for me. Tomoya making up with his father and the entire scene with Naoyuki meeting Ushio for the first time and the idea of Naoyuki moving home with his parents is something that I feel was executed absolutely fantastically and it is really one of the best moments of the series. Even just rewatching the scene to write this nearly had me in tears and when a scene can make me cry on command, I know that it has to be something very special.
Clannad is a special series. It is a series that executes a very close-to-home theme for me and the idea of family is something that is very special to me. No matter what happens, through thick and thin in life, family will always be there for you. Even when things with your family seem bad, they’ll always be there for you. In the same way that Naoyuki was always there for Tomoya and the supportive nature of Nagisa’s family, family will always be behind you. It’s something that made Clannad a very special series to me and it’s an experience I will never forget.
To Be Continued Tomorrow With
Taku’s Top 15 Anime: #6