Reflections — Tsubasa Chronicle

Title: Tsub­asa Chronicle
Adapt­ed from: Tsub­asa ‑RESER­Voir CHRoN­i­CLE- (Man­ga)
Pro­duc­tion: Bee­Train, Pro­duc­tion IG (movie)
Broad­cast­er: NHK

The sto­ry is a crossover using lots of char­ac­ters from past series made by CLAMP.

Syao­ran, a boy who wants to become an arche­ol­o­gist, and Saku­ra, a princess from the Clow King­dom, are child­hood friends with a close rela­tion­ship. On a fate­ful night, Saku­ra lost all her mem­o­ries as a result of a con­spir­a­cy to obtain her pow­ers. In order to regain her mem­o­ry, Syao­ran seeks help from the witch, Yuuko. Yuuko tells Syao­ran that he has to trav­el from one alter­nate real­i­ty to anoth­er to col­lect frag­ments of Saku­ra’s mem­o­ry. How­ev­er, even if Saku­ra regains her mem­o­ry, she will have no rec­ol­lec­tion of Syao­ran. Trav­el­ling togeth­er with them is Kuro­gane, a war­rior who was exiled from his coun­try, and Fye, a magi­cian who wants to escape from his King. With the help of a mag­i­cal crea­ture, Mokona, they set off on an excit­ing jour­ney through time and space.

As a CLAMP fan, I quite enjoyed Tsub­asa, yes. Or at least, the man­ga… the ani­me, how­ev­er, left much to be desired. (;

The man­ga was already bet­ter than the ani­me in the first place. How­ev­er, it did­n’t mean that the ani­me start­ed bad. No, it did­n’t. The first sea­son was actu­al­ly pret­ty good, aside from throw­ing some of the com­e­dy out the win­dow and mak­ing it more seri­ous. Tsub­asa Chron­i­cle’s first sea­son was pret­ty faith­ful to the man­ga too. The sec­ond sea­son, how­ev­er, start­ed bad and end­ed bad because alot of the canon arcs were rushed, if not skipped entire­ly, and most it con­sist­ed of pret­ty hor­ri­ble fillers. Some episodes were okay, like the Kuro­gane back­ground sto­ry arc, the chibi filler and the Kero cameo but a major­i­ty of it was pret­ty bad. The last arc of sea­son two was the most painful to watch, not just because it was filler… it was just bad. All of it gave me a “WTF” feel­ing as I watched: “wtf is this prince of the bird/wing/whatever peo­ple and why is he try­ing to molest Saku­ra?!” It was esspe­cial­ly unbe­liv­able at the end where all those feath­ers scat­tered and Syao­ran did­n’t even try to get at least one them. And there were a shit­load of feath­ers too. What was the ani­me try­ing to do?! Make an estab­lish­ment for MORE fillers?!

I don’t even see why the fillers were there in the first place. The ani­me had a good amount of mate­r­i­al from the man­ga to adapt from — adding that to the “sea­son break” the ani­me seemed to have, there was no way pos­si­ble that they would go ahead of the man­ga. If they had filled the ani­me’s sec­ond with more man­ga mate­r­i­al, they would prob­a­bly have end­ed around Reko­rd. WHERE IT WAS SUPPOSED TO END IF THEY TRIED. And it prob­a­bly would­n’t have been can­celed (from broad­cast on NHK at least. Good news in the next post…)… if it was­n’t done by Bee­Train and was­n’t aired on NHK, then it prob­a­bly would­n’t have can­celed. Blah.

The ani­ma­tion for the ani­me ranged from good to com­plete­ly ter­ri­ble. As with the sto­ry, the ani­ma­tion in the first sea­son was­n’t all that bad. The only com­plaint among fans were that they were too scrawny, but hon­est­ly, that’s how CLAMP drew them so I would­n’t care less. Most of the ani­ma­tion in the sec­ond sea­son was… ter­ri­ble. Some char­ac­ters looked com­plete­ly off-mod­eled in some frames.

As for the sto­ry itself (spoil­ers ahead), it’s quite enjoy­able if you like your typ­i­cal romance/adventure. Actu­al­ly, it isn’t that typ­i­cal at all. If you are, in any way, a fan of CLAMP (or seen one of their series; that should be enough lol), this would feel like an ani­me-ver­sion of King­dom Hearts. Same con­cept, recy­cled char­ac­ters cross­ing over to the same sto­ry and such. The char­ac­ters aren;t exact­ly the same peo­ple you knew them as, just the same “soul” tak­ing on the same appear­ance in anoth­er world, heck: tak­ing on a com­plete­ly dif­fer­ent role. A per­son you may think is good may be com­plete­ly evil in anoth­er world and so on.

At first you’d think Syao­ran was just a typ­i­cal, polite, and bor­ing hero, only a shad­ow of his for­mer self in Card­cap­tor Saku­ra, but you’d come to like his kind­ness towards oth­ers and how he cares about Saku­ra (like he was at the end of CCS (:). As the sto­ry pro­gress­es, we find out that he has more mys­ter­ies in his past than we expected.

As the sto­ry gets more intense in the man­ga, we find out that our Syao­ran (the one we’ve seen lead­ing the sto­ry so far) is actu­al­ly a clone of the boy that looks like Syao­ran float­ing in the tube in Fei Wong Reed’s sanc­tu­ary (who was, at first, shown as if he was going to be an antag­o­nist), made specif­i­cal­ly to col­lect Saku­ra’s feath­ers. He reverts in the Acid Tokyo arc, and becomes a heart­less drone that only cares about col­lect­ing the feath­ers (he even tears Fay’s eye out and eats it), leav­ing his for­mer friends behind (with the real Syao­ran, the tube boy, tak­ing a spot in the main group… for the mean­time, hope­ful­ly). After this, Saku­ra is often seen pret­ty depressed (poor Saku­ra… ):).

Fay is also revealed to have a trag­ic and dark past… but I don’t want to spoil any of you too much. (;

Any­ways, the sto­ry isn’t exact­ly the best, but it’s decent and gets pret­ty intense lat­er in the man­ga. It’s a def­i­nite rec­om­men­da­tion to all the CLAMP fans out there. The ani­me, how­ev­er, is not rec­om­mend­ed besides the first sea­son (though there would be no point since that would­n’t fin­ish the sto­ry…). All the open­ings and end­ings in the ani­me are awe­some, though.

2 thoughts on “Reflections — Tsubasa Chronicle

  1. Did you know Mokona, Rayearth (syoran’s kudan), Selece (Kuru­gane’s kudan), and Wing­dom (Fai’s kudan) appear in a Man­ga and Ani­me that came out before Tsub­asa. It is called Mag­ic Knight Rayearth.

  2. @Ascula: Yup, knew all of that.Mokona actu­al­ly TALKS in this series though.

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