It’s over, then. It was nice seeing Tokyo arc animated.
In the end, they really did save the best for last, and what a last! I’m very happy with this last installment, I liked it a lot and it’s my favorite of all 3.
So here are some thoughts of mine while I was watching the subbed version of Shinsen Subs, who did a pretty good job, by the way, better than last time.
Yuuko mentioning about the prices that Subaru and Kamui had to pay in order to travel through different dimensions really made me curious and wondering if we’ll ever find that out. Fuuma and Seishirou’s prices are also very much desirable.
One of the greatest things of this OAD were the seiyuus. I think Ohara Sayaka has really found herself on playing Yuuko. You can tell from the previous two installments too but particularly in this one where she has a lot of screen-time. You can really sense the seriousness and power that Yuuko’s voice should have. I think Sayaka sounds more secure on playing her than before.
Namikawa did a great job on Fye too. He brought a lot of emotion to the almost emotion-less vampire transformation scene. He’s great, but I have to admit that sometimes he sounds more “Namikawa” than “Fye”, if you know what I mean.
And what a surprise, I’m giving my compliments to Yui Makino, who would have thought? Well, she did a great job as well, I must acknowledge that. She brought even more emotion to the scenes featuring Sakura. I think “tough” Sakura inspired her xD
Fye’s vampire transformation scene, like I said before, didn’t cause me the same impact the manga did. Actually the manga is better in all levels, in my opinion, but this scene in special is very shocking in the manga, you can tell Fye’s in real pain, but not that much in the OAD. I would say Namikawa’s gasps saved the scene.
I loved the scene with the water containers, looks so pretty xD I’m glad Ohkawa kept it even though an outsider can’t tell it was Watanuki who filled them up.
Fuuma mentions that he found the feather container 4 years ago, that really makes me wonder for how long he’s been traveling xD For some weird reason I couldn’t remember that was said in the manga, I looked it up and it really was. I demand more Fuuma/Seishirou/Kamui/Subaru backstory.
It’s a shame Ohkawa didn’t keep Yuuko’s line about how troublesome the hunter brothers were, I loved when she said that in the manga xD
Also regarding the hunter brothers, Ohkawa said in that notorious Puff interview that she wanted to add an “ordinary talk” between Fuuma and Seishirou if an animated version of Tokyo arc was ever to be made. Apparently she didn’t.
Sakura’s quest for the egg was definitely the biggest highlight of this OAD. It was perfectly animated. I actually felt pity for Sakura in the same way I did in the manga (partly due to the animation, partly due to Makino’s performance), her injuries were all very faithful. It is also a very dynamic sequence, I really like how we can see the events with Sakura alternating with those inside the Tokyo Government Office, it was a smart way of saving time and like I said, giving a dynamic feeling to it.
The total lack of censorship should be noticed too. When Sakura shot the first monster and they showed a wide shot (again xD) from the wreckage, I thought they would censor all the shootings, but then came the two-headed snake and the shoots were there, violent as they should be.
If Sakura’s quest was the biggest highlight, the appearance of Sakura Kinomoto was the biggest surprise. I could never, ever possibly guess this would happen, out of all things that could happen that would be different than the manga. This is the first huge difference between the OADs and the manga, and I think it could be a vital thread for a possible original ending, if they’ll ever make one. It’s as if CLAMP really want a continuation (of course they do) and they used their very best resource for that.
And she looks so adorable! Sakura Kinomoto, that is. You can tell the staff put a lot of effort into making her, as if she was the big star of the episode.
Is she pure fan-service? I don’t think so. Partly, it could be, because for heaven’s sake, it’s Sakura Kinomoto, CLAMP’s most known character, but I don’t think Ohkawa would put her only for the sake of the fans. She might be there for the sake of the cliffhanger and make people wish for a continuation, yes, but I doubt her appearance was meaningless for the plot.
Fan-service or not, if she’s there, there must be a reason behind it. Sakura Kinomoto IS “the dream seen by the princess”. Sure, there is that other dream that you all know that we only found out in Infinity, but for an outsider, someone who is not up-to-date with the manga, Sakura Kinomoto is the dream that Princess Sakura saw. She asks herself in the end if what she saw was a dream or an illusion, and then the killing cliffhanger question “Or was it…?”. That last line is TOTALLY screaming THERE WILL BE A CONTINUATION.
But not just fan-service, Miyuki-chan in the end is fan-service. Sakura saw someone who looks just like her, and judging by her clothes, she was most definitely not from that country. Wouldn’t you ask yourself who she was? She already asked that, and if there will be a continuation, she’ll keep asking herself who was that girl, she won’t forget her and how she helped her finding her way back to Syaoran and the others.
About the other dream, it’s worth mentioning that when Sakura arrives and Fye greets her, there’s a close up to her hand touching Fye’s arm, which is the moment she had the vision in the manga, the moment she touched him. Supposing there will be a continuation, this could be another thread (I can totally picture Ohkawa inserting that detail in the script).
Another difference that I noticed was that there was no mention by Yuuko about the “two futures”. That is probably related to Watanuki and thus, XXXHOLiC, so maybe Ohkawa decided to cut that part off of the plot, since the XXXHOLiC anime is not making links with Tsubasa’s, for the sake of a possible alternative ending.
The animation was very well-done, all scenes looked very good. I still don’t like the soundtrack, except for a couple of songs, so for this episode I will give a 9/10 grade. For being faithful, pretty, dynamic, having the emotion the previous episode did not have and for its surprising and foreshadowing element at the end.
Thinking better, I shouldn’t have given 9/10 to OAD #1, because the last one is my favorite, and I shouldn’t have given 7/10 to OAD #2 either. Now that we have all three, and we can compare one with the other, I can valuate them properly. So my final ranking and grades would be:
1st – The Dream Seen by the Princess 9/10
2nd – The Magician’s Message 8/10
3rd – The Boy’s Right Eye 6/10
After watching this episode, there’s no doubt that Ohkawa was thinking on a continuation when she was writing these, she left the door wide open just in case. Now we wait and see if the DVD sales were good enough to make a continuation or not. I’d say it’s just a matter of time for the announcement to come, and if that happens, all I ask is to keep Ohkawa in charge of the scripts.