February 19, 2009

Clannad -- a throbbing headache

After Haruhi came out, a lot of people (whose blogs I read) became big fans of KyoAni, the studio that did it. Lucky Star certainly didn't harm that reputation any. But since then, KyoAni has spent apparently all its time and resources converting sob-sob interactive games from Key into animations.

It began with "Sad Girls in Snow" aka Kanon, which was a remake of an earlier series someone else did. And that was commercially successful, leading to "Sad Girls in Spring" (aka Air) and then "Sad Girls in Summer" aka Clannad.

Clannad was a full season, 24 eps, but evidently there were more sobs to be wrung from the story, so they immediately did another full season of "More Sad Girls in Summer" aka "Clannad After Story". It's running now.

Big eyes, sad faces, lots of crying (among people who have been watching it) and damned near every episode-coverage blog I read has been hooked on this damned series. I'm really very tired of the whole thing.

CAS is nearly over now; another four or five eps and then I'll be free from this plague. Or will I? Just in time, the first half of the US DVD release of Clannad has appeared, and now the other blogs I follow will all spend lots of time talking about it. Will I never be free of this plague?

My problem is that I'm not into bathos. I've never liked stories which were designed to make me cry.

Wonderduck is a friend, and maybe he'll have something to say that isn't fawning adoration expressed through tears and hankies. But it would be nice if KyoAni would work on something else for a while. After a flash of brilliance three years ago, they've settled into being the Harlequin Romance of anime houses. Blech.

UPDATE: I need to use the "Rants" category more often.

Posted by: Steven Den Beste in Rants at 08:52 PM | Comments (14) | Add Comment
Post contains 315 words, total size 2 kb.

1 If I may correct the KeyotoAni (sic) timeline for a sec, it actually went Air, then Kanon '06, then Clannad/Clannad After Story, and will (presumably) finish up with Little Busters! sometime in the future.

The plan all along was for there to be a "sequel" to Clannad, aka After Story.  The first half (Clannad) covered very little of the source game's material, and practically none of the tear-jerker stuff.  That's the heavy drama part of the game, and is being nicely covered in AS

Having said all that, don't expect any fawning in that upcoming post.

Posted by: Wonderduck at February 19, 2009 10:12 PM (tMdKd)

2 Don't worry, Haruhi sequel is coming.

Posted by: BigFire at February 20, 2009 07:09 AM (JylMM)

3 Ah, much better than more sad girls:  another series SDB has to avoid like the plague, lest he get lynched by the fans.  *ducks*

Posted by: metaphysician at February 20, 2009 08:02 AM (h4nEy)


BigFire:  Cite, please.  Or be prepared for a lynching yourself. ;-)

The Faithful are very touchy on the subject of false reports of the Second Coming of the Goddess. 

Posted by: ubu at February 20, 2009 09:52 AM (i7ZAU)

5 This link from Wiki is the best I can do, towards the bottom.  I believe like the first season which uses the first Melancholy novel as the base 6 episodes, the new season is supposed to use the Disappearance novel as the base. 

Posted by: BigFire at February 20, 2009 10:23 AM (9KNwi)


The problem is, it didn't happen. It's not clear why they did that a year and a half ago, but since then the only hint we've gotten was the faux announcement for July, which turned out to be a replay of the first series rather than anything new.

There's a lot of resentment among fans about that fake-out. And there was an apology for it.

Posted by: Steven Den Beste at February 20, 2009 11:15 AM (+rSRq)


To each there own.

Personally I preferred Clannad over Kanon due to the large amounts of comedy (and the interlacing of the variousgirls arcs was better. Kanon was more of a process of elimination), and don't think it deserves to be summed up as sad girls crying. The second season is a lot more emontional, but (IMO) its good to have a series that takes a different route from the usual harem endings (It is a bit similar to School Days in that respect).

Speaking of the DVD, I just noticed it is sub only. If even ADV are cutiting out on dubbing could this be the beginning of the end for English dubs? 

Posted by: Andrew Janes at February 20, 2009 11:18 AM (8sv/y)


I don't think that dubbing will cease entirely, if for no other reason than because a series has to be dubbed for cable broadcast, and I don't think that cable broadcast of anime will cease completely.

But I think eventually more titles will be sub-only than dubbed. For a lot of titles, the sales increase you'd get for a dub doesn't compensate for the added cost of doing the dub. The production cost for a sub-only release is a hell of a lot lower.

For a long time the main impetus for doing dubs was that the big-box stores wouldn't carry anything that wasn't dubbed. But most of the big-box stores have stopped carrying anime entirely, and the remaining ones are cutting way back. Which means that the anticipated sales-increment gained by doing a dub is going to be lower, and in a lot of cases it won't be enough to justify the expense.

Posted by: Steven Den Beste at February 20, 2009 01:31 PM (+rSRq)

9 I'd hesitate to extend any observations about ADV to the rest of the industry. It's really, badly in dire shape at the moment; the decision not to dub Clannad is likely to be as much due to lack of ready cash as it is anything else. Not only does dubbing cost money, it costs money during production; if you've got access to credit, that's not an issue, but if you're hanging on by your fingernails, you might not be able to front the dubbing cost.

Bandai not dubbing Hayate, now, that could be more indicative of a trend...

Posted by: Avatar_exADV at February 20, 2009 03:01 PM (pWQz4)

10 Avatar- is that definite? I was thinking that since Media Blasters, Bandai, Nozomi and now ADV are releasing sub only titles that the industry is definitly moving away from dubbing, and may stop entirely in the near future. Which would be a shame IMO.

Posted by: Andy Janes at February 20, 2009 03:31 PM (8sv/y)

11 Well, Nozomi is an outlier to start with - they're not "moving to" sub only, that's what they -do-.

The problem is that it's now difficult to split up anime company behavior into the "little company" and "big company" categories. ADV is now a little company. Bandai just laid off a bunch of people; while they're a big company in Japan, they may not be a big one here anymore. Media Blasters is little. The only "big" companies left are Funimation and Viz, and they're a huge chunk of the market now. If one of them starts going sub-only, we definitely have an industry-wide trend. I do not anticipate that they'll do this for all of their titles, though they might experiment with it for niche titles if it's working for everyone else.

(We don't know that it IS working for everyone else. Bandai's announced it on a single title that would be very unlikely to see good sales on DVD due to its length, and ADV I've already commented on.)

Posted by: Avatar_exADV at February 20, 2009 08:04 PM (pWQz4)


Well, Aria is the only release formally under the Nozomi imprint, so it's really hard to say.

TRSI released Shingu with a dub. And Ninja Nonsense was dubbed.

Posted by: Steven Den Beste at February 20, 2009 09:59 PM (+rSRq)


Well, Aria is the only release formally under the Nozomi imprint, so it's really hard to say.

They've put out MariMite and Emma sub-only as well.

Posted by: DiGiKerot at February 20, 2009 10:28 PM (f/+hx)

14 Hm... Karekano they dubbed too, huh. Looking at it that way, maybe they just went in that direction first? ;p

Posted by: Avatar_exADV at February 20, 2009 11:23 PM (7TgBH)

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