Friday, July 9, 2010

The School's Trees: Everyone's Waiting for You (Kotomi Arc)


This is the second character arc of Clannad, the one that I'm the most conflicted about. Why? Well, on the one hand it's a great amount of fun. The violin recital is undoubtedly one of the funniest moments of Clannad. Heck, it's so funny I'll post it!



See what I mean? She's just so deadly, so unaware, so......cute. If I may, I would like to say that she is the cutest of the girls, even moreso than Fuko. There's just this charm to her that's so disarming, so honest, so... well....watch...



Bo-n-jour? It's cuteness. All of it.

All arcs of Clannad are a foreshadowing of the end, and this arc is no exception. Kotomi's arc is even more blatant in its foreshadowing than Fuko's, showing us many things about Tomoya and the child that he and Nagisa will have. I can't say too much without giving it all away but rest assured, when the time comes I will do a full comparison between all the Clannad girls and the child. For the moment, just take into account Kotomi's relative isolation, and this video clip (skip to 5:12)



Tomoya's heroism once again shines out. His belief that the world, that God, will love Kotomi is just as strong as his belief in Fuko. Despite Tomoya being a jerk and his inability to stay awake for any length of time his faith and love are enough to help get Kotomi to a place where she can heal. She puts her trust in God, in the world....

And, once again, the world reciprocates as Tomoya had promised, as shown in the following scene:


I gotta admit, this is the corniest part of Clannad. No matter how much time passes, I can't help but roll my eyes over the sheer corniness of that scene. However, it does prove the point. Corny or not, it's beautiful.

The lights around Kotomi are also the key part of this story, and for obvious reasons you should be wondering what the heck they are. Rest assured, I will explain it. But for now, be content with the fact that I know what's going on and you don't. ;)

As good as her arc is though, in my humble opinion it has the most plot holes of Clannad. I say this for a few reasons. First, her seeming abandonment by her godfather. Second, THE BRIEFCASE! And third, her mental state, which goes back to the the first reason.

First, the issue of her godfather. Now, I understand that things probably work a bit differently in Japan, but why the heck didn't this man take Kotomi in? He obviously cares for her, and even though she's scared of him initially that really shouldn't make a difference as to what her godfather's actions are. His seeming lack of common sense always jerks me back to reality, something that I really can't forgive the writers for. That and putting him in a trench coat and sunglasses and a hat REALLY make him look like a bad guy. Seriously, writers, seriously. What the hell were you thinking?

Second, that briefcase. I understand on some level that it's a miracle that the briefcase made it all around the world, but for criminy's sake those sorts of things just don't happen. And for comparison, I agree with the ending of Clannad, which is as about as out of the blue as it gets for an anime, and I didn't buy THIS. Are my priorities screwed up? Probably, but then again I always had a bit more trust of God than I did humanity.

Third, Kotomi shows some signs of PTSD and having some sort of personality disorder. I don't just say that because she's weird, I'm saying that because of her inability to connect with others, her misunderstanding of social cues, and that maddening toe walk which no woman with her bust size would do willingly. Something's just not right, which fuels problem number one that I have with this arc. If she has these issues why didn't someone step in and help her before Tomoya?

GAAAAAAAAAAH!!! THREE PLOT HOLES IN A PERFECT SHOW! IT'S ENOUGH FOR ME TO GO CRAZY!!!



OK, I feel better now.... the Dango song....yay....

Despite having these plot holes I could drive my Chrysler through, Kotomi's arc is amazing. While it didn't affect me as much as Fuko's arc did, Kotomi's arc is a good follow up to the masterpiece that is Fuko.  I love Kotomi's violin, I love her innocence, and well, I love Kotomi. I'm sorry that I can't talk as much about her overall place in the plot yet, but trust me, I'll have plenty to say later.

With three hiragana.

Many thanks to Clannad Central for uploading these videos specifically because we asked them to. You guys are awesome!