Fourteen-year-old Sakura starts junior high school along her friends, including Syaoran, who had just returned to Tomoeda. After having a dream with a mysterious cloaked figure, all of Sakura's cards turn blank and are rendered powerless, thus she starts her quest to find out what is wrong. In doing so, Sakura and her allies discover and capture new transparent cards using a new key.
'The Greek word for "return" is nostos. Algos means "suffering." So nostalgia is the suffering caused by an unappeased yearning to return.'
Nostalgia, while is a strong tool to make a sequel successful with high ratings, is not enough if you are banking only… and only on it.
The act of watching the sequel of a beloved show itself brings on enough nostalgia. The older audiences feel happy inside, thinking of good old days when the original show used to air and how they enjoyed it and talked about it with their friends; or enjoyed the show alone while cuddling up with their house pet,
and parents moved around doing daily chores, smiling secretly at their kids’ lit-up faces.
Your etc. is part of that older generation audience, and is a huge admirer of CCS. And precisely that is the reason Clear Card-hen has disappointed me. Big time.
Regarding Story and Character, I am going to be in rant-mode now, please bear with me.
Yes, of course I shall compare this to the original saga. The original saga was not simply about a girl who can do magic and plays around with cards. It had decently paced narrative with immense character development, surprisingly good exploration of love, gender identity, sacrifice, family and most importantly, efficient magical world-building without expanding it in an out-of-control manner, in only 70 episodes.
On the contrary, Clear Card-hen has a pace that certainly reminds you of all the bad fillers of shounen animes, the SOL way! Even after 16 episodes, the story reaches nowhere, taking quite a test of patience. When a season is only 22 episodes long, this is certainly not the ideal way to advance a narrative. The new narrative has such limited amount of new elements - only introducing new characters do not imply the story will immediately feel new. While there were SOL-ish elements in CCS, this sequel has stretched that into “I-will-read-a-WHOLE-story-to-kids-and-use-up-an-episode” level.
Why are the episodes consuming so much time by revisiting the same locations to catch similar cards? Was a new location so hard to design? No. The answer is, “remember, we had <done this and this> here? Now we are here, doing <placeholder for similar this and this>, so lovely memory… etc etc”.
In a dynamic medium like Anime, if one does not follow the audio-visual rule “show, don’t tell”, then it quickly becomes a boring tale. The lunchtime banter among friends or “remember that?” between Sakura and Kero / Tomoyo/ ANYONE added surprisingly little to the actual story.
This show does not give detailed attention to an important factor like character development, given the fact that it takes place some years later. What happened to the MC? Mind that, Sakura is fourteen now. But her behaviour still does not feel like older than that of CCS. Her “Oyeeeehhhhh”, the frequency of which is much more than her younger years (how??) and endlessly thanking and praising Akiho-chan, while is very cute for the first couple of times, quickly becomes a repetitive aspect of her behaviour. Sakura can do better.
The only possible answer to this is that Madhouse is trying to grab the attention of the new younger audiences of Japan and around the world, for whom this sweetness of Sakura is new. But while nostalgia is the trump card, it is surprising to see Sakura herself not maturing with time. Even Anime-only Meilin has come a long way, she does not behave as she used to. Syaoran, while having frustratingly less dialogs except in the last three episodes, has grown up from that brat-y type of CCS.
As for the other characters, well, we come to know very little about the old characters and even less about the new characters, rather than seeing them saying endless thank you to each other and praising each other. Meanwhile, Syaoran boy keeps saying just “yeah” to everyone.
Romance of Syaoran and Sakura certainly took a backseat, which it shouldn’t have, after all those build-ups in CCS series and the movies. Interaction of Touya and Yue, while remained interesting, was SO short that I am sure many viewers were left feeling unfulfilled. A tease? Okay. But Touya’s secret power, which he will unleash whenever he feels right, serves no purpose in this season except being all words.
Akiho is a puppet and is painfully and repetitively so. Had the season been longer, we could have dived deeper into her and Kaito’s backstory, but the conscious decision of the director and animators to keep everything as the material for the next season is hardly the right way to keep the audience interested throughout.
The OP1 “CLEAR” and the ED2 are my favourites. Background sound is not as adorably cheesy as CCS, but not exceptional either.
The art is beautiful and the animation feels refreshing. It’s 2018, and it’s Madhouse, so of course! This is a good update.
I was elated as the show started, and was quite forgiving in the beginning. It was great to see Sakura and others again! But then, I grew tired of waiting for the big reveals, new magic by new characters, new power of old characters and so on. Nope. It never really took off.
To me, Clear Card-hen has clearly gone overboard with nostalgia and the SOL trend. Only the last two episodes are comparatively decent ones. The season leaves everything so open-ended that one is bound to feel cheated by the brains behind this show; ‘okay, so you simply want me to watch another season, you never had any intention to make it a concise, self-sufficient narrative’.
Will I watch the next seasons? Yes, I will. But this “hen” needs to step up the game. Else it is nothing more than an okay-kind nostalgia-fest than being the true successor of arguably the most interesting magical girl show.
Clear card sakura is just an ok enough show to watch. The plot goes through the same rodeo that it had done twice before in the original show. There's enough differences in the plot line, including a whole mystery aspect that just makes it different enough to not feel to samesy. Most of the characters relatively stay the same and sakura and syaoran relationship feels a tad underdeveloped. There are also some new characters including one that is almost a mirror to sakura and also has some purpose in the plot. Yet by the end while the whole mystery had been revealed, even though there
were unsubtle clues about it, the whole thing comes off as a means for setting up for another season rather than being a well developed story.
Audiovisualy the show is still good all around like it's predecessor, and with what i believe many voice actors reprising their roles and many of the old soundtracks coming back into the show.
So although the plot may feel derivative with an unsatisfactory payoff, and the characters being the same throughout. The show still has its charm that makes it a decent watch.
Personal Rate: 5
Overall Rate based on the different criteria: 5,6 rounded down to 5
Okay. I guess like most viewers here, I first saw Sakura in my childhood. Basically. CCS came out when I was in my first year of middle school ( last year of primary school in the US system). It was one of my first anime and I still have very fond memories of it in spite of being relatively bored when rewatching it a couple of years ago...
This anime should only be watched if you've seen the original series...
What's obvious however is that it was made too early... It's TOO
LONG for so little a plot and the fanservice... sucks.
Sigh... Not much... In fact, CCS- Clear Card fails to capture the original magic of the series. When in the past, you would have Sakura thinking of how to use previously captured cards to capture a new one... You get like 2 minutes of capturing a new card in each episode... The rest is full of cooking classes, meals, picnics, random discussions with familiar characters etc.
The useless fanservice takes so much space that I got ultimately bored out of my mind.
I don't mind fanservice. In fact, one could argue that the 1998 series was filled to the brim with fanservices... But there was enough plot advancement to make up for it and the fanservice was interesting:
Sakura's discovery of her new power, her crush on her older brother's best friend, then the arrival of Shaoran, their rivalry (mostly on Shaoran's side), the love triangle with Sakura, Shaoran and Yukito ( and Sakura, Shaoran and Meiling), then Shaoran falling hopelessly in love with Sakura and all the cute interactions they got, her older brother's overprotective zeal and so on and so on.
The "filler fanservice" in the original anime was cute and interesting and even if the plot wasn't moving forward that much, there were still interesting interactions with the characters. Hell, I remember watching it only to see when Shaoran would manage to tell Sakura that he luuuuuuuuurrrrrrrrrrrved her. It was just that cute.
But here, forget Shaoran (even if they're now officially together).. Nope, we get more interactions with Sakura and her new friend... which honestly is a total Mary sue ( arguably they're all Mary sues in this series but her awful haircut got on my nerves) and LOTS and LOTS of them eating, cooking, eating and cooking and cooking and eating and eating and drinking tea and eating and drinking tea... and Kero eating as well for good measure.
We get crumbs of plot here and there but you have to suffer lots of boredom to get there.
The last 2 episodes are way above the rest of the series but it's too little too late to save it.
Forget the 20 years of CCS... They should have waiting for more volumes of the manga before making an anime. Seriously who cares it's been 20 years... 25 years would have done the trick as well and the disappointment wouldn't have been as big if any.
Good not astounding. Respect the original series... A bit disappointed Sakura goes to school by foot and no longer with her inline skates... She also has a smartphone now. Wow. Modernity.
Fans of the original series will be satisfied... though I'm not too fond of neither the openings nor endings.
Not much to say. Totally bland. The thing is, we don't really discover anything new about the original characters and the only new characters we get are Kaito, Akiho and her rabbit plushy.
Kaito is cryptic and is not given enough screentime to really be interesting although he's certainly the character whose motivations are the most interesting. Too bad the plot moves slower than a snail's pace.
Akiho's haircut is a nightmare and she's just bland. Sigh... It is stressed through the whole series that she resembles Sakura in many ways so obviously you get that this will turn out to be important somewhere. But honestly, since the plot was getting nowhere all her screentime was really wasted.
More Shaoran would have done wonders.
I'm refraining myself from giving less ( because yeah this is my CHILDHOOD!) but man WAS I BORED. If at least I had gotten more Shaoran with Sakura I wouldn't have complained that much. But NOPE. By the middle of the series, I had given up hope but even the last two episodes couldn't give me back my faith.
Episode 19 is the epitome of BOREDOM HELL. You have my utter respect if you manage to watch it without sighing, snoozing, snoring, yawning or manifesting any other sign of ultimate boredom.
You know.... If it wasn't for the last 2 episodes... I would have given up. But these last 2 managed to save the tiny flame still surviving on my candle... IF there is a follow-up ( in 5 YEARS PLEASE, so CLAMP can move the story forward a little), I'll watch it.
Honestly, the only reason I'm not giving a 4 or even a 3 is because it's my childhood and I'm just very reluctant to crush an anime that used to be a middle school obsession on my part.
I can't even recommend it. If you haven't seen this anime yet but know the original series and are curious to know more... I say wait for the next season and watch the recap episode of this season that will inevitably be aired: You won't be missing anything except not wasting your precious time.
Having just seen the original Cardcaptor Sakura, I was immediately rewarded with a sequel. My expectations were lower than normally. CLAMP has been rebooting franchises in the past just in the name of milking them, without the sequels ever accomplishing anything. Moreover, I had some major problems with the original CCS to begin with. Saying that, I have been somewhat positively surprised by both: MadHouse and CLAMP themselves.
When it comes to the original CCS, it was simply too long, dragging, and always afraid to go anywhere and to do anything. The romantic subplot became the main reason for its fans to follow the series, but
CLAMP failed to deliver so bad they even had to make a sequel movie just to offer some sort of canon pairing to it. Unfortunately even this "conclusion" was practically a copy-paste of the generic, open ending mainly seen is harem series. With this sequel, CLAMP has seemed to finally learn what the fans want, and offer at least some amount of content like that.
The writing is still a mixed bag. The slice of life moments vary from heart-warming picnics to explanations on how to use a microwave. Needless to say, the latter type of slice of life silliness is awful to watch. The comedy writing can be equally hit and miss. The weird sounds Sakura makes, and the scenes where her brother teases her are all great to watch. Any other comedy doesn't really relief anything. The romance aspect has changed from annoying to rather cute with the sequel. Our main couple's awkward blushing really does serve the atmosphere of the show overall.
The actual story is bit more believable than last time, and also the events around our cards are often way more original and memorable: take the walking trees for example. However, the balance of the show is pretty weird. Half of the time it feels like the cardcaptor side is just an excuse to fill the series with slice of life silliness, but on the hand, the same can be said about the school and family life of Sakura who seems to so often have her thoughts in nothing but the cards and current events. The fact that she has to hide her magical girl side from so many other characters is really splitting the show in two which limits the writing and makes it repetitive, moreover, makes the people who do not know her secret seem stupider than they are.
Our characters are still pretty much kids. Long time skip would have been a good idea, considering that the series was on hiatus for over 15 years anyway. Sakura is identical to the character we saw in the movie 2. Outside the romance, there isn't much development on her character. Still, some of her behavior is simply stunning. Like that dancing scene from episode 9. She radiates happiness so much it's practically impossible not to feel the same when watching her. Syaoran acts rather inconsistently in this. His dialog 50% of the time consist of him replying "yeah" to whatever anyone says to him. The other 50% of the time he seems to be the same character as before except the whole "annoying brat" aspect of him has been removed completely. Great decision right there. Tomoyo still sounds like she will die if winds blows on her too hard, and once again only exists because Sakura exists. At least her singing scenes are great to watch. Touya is obviously real bro because he is so skilled at teasing Sakura, and creates some funny comedic situations by doing so.
Having watched the original anime from bluray, I can't be but surprised how much better the sequel looks and sounds like streamed. Some of the scenes were clearly created in the purpose of being screencapped. The moe faced comedy segments are just really good addition, and practically the whole production is -- art-wise-- an improvement. Especially some of the card "fights" were just ridiculous color effects in the original. In this one, everything is pretty and serves the show. The OST on the hand is also pretty weird. The BGM mainly reminds me of those cheesy tracks you can hear in children adventure games when you enter a shop to buy consumables. Not all that good decisions were made when these tracks were picked. The ED1 "music video" is still simply amazing. One of the best ED's in recent years.
There really isn't all that much the sequel adds to the franchise outside the overall length of it. The source material is of course ongoing and all. That's hardly a problem, tho. This series has been made for the fans to enjoy it, and as far as I can agree any series accomplishing what it tried to do: this one hit a homerun. The series often comes with such a charming atmosphere it almost looks like Kobato the early years. Unfortunately, it suffers from quality differences so bad that the show is definitely more enjoyable to watch than it is good, but personally, I am still very pleased with it.