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[Ascaloth] CLANNAD (TV), Another World (Tomoyo Chapter)

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The so-called Episode 24 of CLANNAD (TV), which came as an OVA along with the CLANNAD DVDs, is based on the Tomoyo route in the game, and accordingly depicts an alternative CLANNADverse where Tomoya hooks up with Sakagami Tomoyo. Therefore, it has little in relation to the main Nagisa storyline which was portrayed in the rest of the series, but it provides a nice little insight into a ‘what-if’ where Tomoyo was the main heroine, and also gives a clue as to why the Tomoyo arc in the main series was so abruptly cut off. Although being a standard 1-episode OVA lasting only 30 minutes means that much of the Tomoyo story has been subjected to a hackjob by necessity, the result is still as decent as it goes, and shows us a side of Tomoyo that those of us who haven’t played the game didn’t know existed.

CLANNAD (TV), Another World (Tomoyo Chapter).

One of the most anticipated jokes of the CLANNAD veterans in the Tomoyo storyline is the "break up" joke, as depicted here. While Tomoya was merely saying that in jest at being bothered every morning, on the other hand it’s not funny for Tomoyo. Interestingly, it can be said that the difference between the relationship dynamics between the Tomoya-Tomoyo pairing is subtly, but immediately apparent to that from the Tomoya-Nagisa pairing.

For one thing, while the Tomoya-Nagisa pairing had both parties skirting around the issue and drawing it out as far as they can go before finally acknowledging the existence of their relationship, the Tomoya-Tomoyo pairing was straight-to-the-point in contrast; which kind of suits Tomoyo’s personality, really. For another, while a shy Tomoya had problems even holding hands with an equally shy Nagisa, this version of Tomoya clearly has no problems getting physical with Tomoyo. According to the game vets, the both of them are actually even more physical, and especially so in the Tomoyo After followup, if you know what I mean.

Moe Tomoyo is moe.

Oh, Sunohara…

…how I’ve missed your LOLWUTs.

One thing which interests me deeply is how prejudice featured so strongly in this OVA. We got a hint of the kind of prejudice foisted upon Tomoya for his delinquent status back in Episode 17,but the presence of it here is especially thick, basically being the basis of much of the crisis in the Tomoyo storyline. I’ll get back to this in a bit.

This is my face. This is my palm. What’s the term for the action where I put the latter to the former?

I don’t know how I didn’t notice this before, but Tomoyo’s eyes look as if they have entire galaxies staring out from them. It’s a fascinating sight.

(Is it just me, or does this version of Tomoya REALLY like soft-serve ice creams for some reason?)

Now, let’s come back to prejudice. This negative aspect of society, like I said before, features very strongly in this alternate storyline, and in fact is what comes back to bite Tomoya’s ass for being a perceived delinquent who dares to associate with such a successful person as Tomoyo (which is particularly ironic, considering that inference from the main series, and info from game vets suggest that he had a big part in getting Tomoyo elected in the first place). However, a particularly interesting point here is, why is Tomoya taking so much flak just by associating with Tomoyo?

First, we might want to start off with how Tomoya achieved his ‘delinquent’ status in the eyes of others; a particularly important concept which should be taken into account is the fundamental attribution error. First noticed and described by Heider as "behavior engulfs the field" *, it describes the tendency of people to overattribute others’ behaviors to dispositions while underattributing them to situations, and it is such a pervasive phenomenon that Ross gave it its present moniker in 1977**. This goes a long way in explaining the negative reputation that Tomoya and Sunohara share, where people fail to notice or do not even know about the respective situations that left the both of them where they are today, and simply attributed the underachievements of the duo to their "delinquent" dispositions.

Because of the popular idea among their peers that Tomoya’s delinquent behavior is due to his disposition, it follows that they believe Tomoyo’s own questionable behavior is due to negative influence from her association with the former, instead of her own disposition.

* Heider, F. 1944. "Social Perception and Phenomenal Causality." Psychological Review 51: 358-374 and Heider, F. 1958.. The Psychology of Interpersonal Relations. New York: Wiley.
** Ross, L. 1997. "The Intuitive Psychologist and His Shortcomings: Distortions in the Attribution Process." In Advances in Experimental Social Psychology (Vol. 10), ed. L. Berkowitz. New York: Academic Press.

It’s a very nice touch how the light in Tomoya’s and then Tomoyo’s eyes completely dies out when they start grappling with the issue of having to break up in order to allow Tomoyo to continuing pursuing her goal. Pretty heartbreaking, really.

Also, this part gave me a most uncanny feeling. Taken from this perspective, it was almost as if I were witnessing a couple breaking up from an outsider’s perspective in real life. Wonderful perspective play there.

"Few experiences in life are capable of producing more emotional distress, anguish and suffering than the dissolution of an important relationship." (Simpson 1987, 683)

According to findings by Jeffry A. Simpson, three factors influence the level of emotional distress an individual feels after a breakup; these are level of investment (intimacy and length of relationship), and perceived ease of finding an alternative***. This may help to explain the level of emotional distress that we see Tomoya feel at least; in this storyline, he has probably invested a lot of time and intimacy into his relationship with Tomoyo, and as a delinquent, his perception is that he probably can’t find anyone as suited to him as Tomoyo was. We don’t really get to see if Tomoyo felt the same, but considering that she probably invested just as much intimacy and closeness into the relationship, and that her perception of her chances of finding a suitable alternative is low due to her position and her personality, it would be a good guess that she feels the same….

….oh, dear. I got carried away; it’s not so much an infodump now as it is an infonuke. My bad, let’s move on.

*** Simpson, J.A. 1987. "The Dissolution of Romantic Relationships: Factors Involved in Relationship Stability and Emotional Distress." Journal of Personality and Social Psychology 53: 683-692

Somehow, I like the fact that Sunohara proves to be such a great pal for Tomoya when the latter is down and out. But then again, we’ve seen plenty of times that he can be a real decent guy if he wants to be; guess he isn’t any different here.

Just like Tomoya, I LOL’d.

In the end, I was like….wow. It may only a 30 minute OVA, and thus the full story may not have been portrayed in its entirety, but I think I have an idea of why Tomoyo was so popular amongst the game vets. Now I’m starting to wish I could have seen this animated in its entirety, but well, you can’t have everything, I guess. It was a beautiful, beautiful scene, as expected of KyoAni’s level of sakuga. Simply great.

(Of course, since leopards will always have spots, tigers will always have stripes, and certain people will always have an anti-KyoAni bias….)

It was a nice look into the alternative CLANNADverse of Tomoyo’s route, and while it isn’t nearly enough to rival the down-to-earth chemistry that the canon Tomoya-Nagisa pair had, one wonders if the full route animated would actually have had a fighting chance at doing so. I’m starting to understand why Tomoyo has so many fans amongst the game vets, enough to have a spinoff of her own. And all too soon, it ended, leaving many to wonder what might have been if it was not merely an OVA.

With the next-issue preview in the August issue of Animedia magazine indicating that CLANNAD After Story is likely to premiere in the Fall season, it is going to be a much anticipated year of CLANNAD ahead. Ascaloth of RIUVA, signing out.

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19 Responses to “[Ascaloth] CLANNAD (TV), Another World (Tomoyo Chapter)”  

  1. 1 Fabio 5 comments

    Nice animation but Nagisa is still my favorite girl.

  2. 2 The Sojourner 57 comments

    -(Of course, since leopards will always have spots, tigers will always have stripes, and certain people will always have an anti-KyoAni bias….)-

    lol. what the….

  3. 3 Hinano 107 comments

    i’ve been hesitating to watch this
    Nagisatan will always be #1!!

  4. 4 IcyStorm 13 comments

    This episode has cemented my love for Tomoyo.

  5. 5 TP 27 comments

    Hey, what’s with the annotations? This isn’t a public peer review, you know? (Unless there are lots of psychology students reading your blog, which I concede your utter |_33 |\|355.)

    OK, my personal opinion: I’ve not seen the Clannad TV series, but after your clever analysis of this path’s character, I’m tempted to watch them, just to dissect the story into juicy details.

  6. 6 Kaioshin Sama 82 comments

    @The Sojourner: Yeah that was kind of random.

  7. 7 C.I. 26 comments

    Tomoyo has now risen GREATLY in my moe meter.

  8. 8 AquaticIdealist 1 comment

    Interesting citations of psychology documents, they gave a nice touch to why the Tomoyo/Tomoya pairing is truly quite interesting. Quite nice indeed.

  9. 9 chas 1 comment

    Tomoyo’s arc has a far more romantic touch, I enjoyed it a lot more than Nagisa’s in the VN/game.

  10. 10 FlameStrike 36 comments

    Woot horray for Tomoyo, my favorite Clannad girl XD. The animation quality was way up there but to tell you the truth I think some of the scenes where not as emotional or connecting compared to the game. Well they had to rush it all in 1 ep so I can understand. Nagisa X Tomoya is still a better couple though hahah.

  11. 11 Stifler 71 comments

    Excellent post as always, Ascaloth. I enjoyed reading it.

  12. 12 shiro 2 comments

    I am repeating myself for the umpteenth time.
    I hope for a Tomoyo After series…

  13. 13 Enima 2 comments

    wow. i really enjoyed reading all the psychological refrences and stuff you put into this - i rather enjoyed that infonuke, if i may say so myself!

    but yeah, i agree - i also gained a lot of respect for the tomoya x tomoyo pairing after that…i could never see it while i was watching the actual series, and i always thought people supporting that pairing were…wrong? lol. blunt but true. but i can definitely see the success now.

    i also agree that i would have liked to see a full series like that, following Tomoyo’s route instead of Nagisa’s.

    but none of those were the reason that the Tomoyo After Story was amazing. what was the reason then, you ask? Tomoyo MOE. Tomoyo moe FTW.

  14. 14 Setsukyie 18 comments

    Good post.

    Tomoyo FTW. I lke her a lot better after watching this.
    But of course, Kyou remains my favorite. ^_^
    Ok, gonna play Tomoyo’s route rigthaway.

  15. 15 seiji7 1 comment

    hye..

    i want to ask something.
    anyone can tell me where to download the english subs for this episode??
    as i have the video but in chinese sub..

    please…
    i am eager to see this episode…

    thanks…

  16. 16 Silencers 32 comments

    I can only RAWs for this. Which group subbed this episode, or isit IRC only?

  17. 17 bovodo 1 comment

    yes this is subbed, its done by

    Aquastar Anime fansub
    (http://www.aquastar-anime.net)

    THANKS TO AQS fansub for this great release

  18. 18 tj_han 1131 comments

    I just saw this. Fantastic episode. It makes me hate Nagisa even more. WTF seriously, why in the world would Kyoani pick her story? It was crap in comparison. I wonder if more OVAs are coming out each showing the various endings.

  1. 1 [Ascaloth] Mahou Tsukai ni Taisetsu na Koto ~Natsu no Sora~, Episode 04 at Riuva : Research Institute for Unicultural Visual Arts


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