Honestly, by this point I had given up. Even the knowledge that Tomoya might be able to bring Nagisa back really didn't move me at this point. Really, why would he? She was dead...
He did it? Wait, what? Tomoya had let it go? Ushio was the kid that the robot was with? What's up with the strange conversation? And the lights? And the...and the....
What the hell was going on?
I'm a diehard fan of Lost, but screw that show, it didn't do this. At least there's a basic system that I'd noticed that made that show make sense. But this? What the hell is this? I thought. Where's the explanation? Where's the closure? Where's......
How did this answer my question? How did this answer the question of death?
To be honest, I didn't get it the first time. It actually pissed me off. The writers had cheated me. All that build up, all that catharsis, all the heartbreak, and HE JUST GOT HER BACK?
I walked away in anger.
But it stuck with me.
That damn happy face. Tomoya was happy.
And I was angry.
I almost didn't want to watch Clannad again. But I couldn't help thinking about it. The show was a masterpiece, almost perfect (gang arc being the only speck in my humble opinion). They couldn't have just screwed it up. They couldn't. They couldn't be wrong. It had to be me that was wrong.
So I watched it again. Just to see. And to facilitate that I've made a new page on this website. You can find it here. It has all the videos that I think are essential to understanding Clannad's plot. I'll update it as I feel the need. I suggest going to that page and watching all of them, in order. But there one's set of videos that you need to watch.
That's right. Taylor spliced together all the robot clips. ALL. OF. THEM. Marvel at Taylor's awesomeness!
I watched all of these things. Over. And over. And over. All to see what I'd missed. Each time I watched Clannad I felt that I'd gotten another piece of the puzzle. I wanted to know what these guys were thinking when they made the most realistic anime I'd ever seen tell us all we had to do was wish and we could come back to life. Even starting this blog I had no idea what the answer was, still. I didn't know why the ending jived at all with me when I started. I didn't know where I got this feeling of familiarity from, or why I liked the ending more every time I watched it. But I started the blog anyway, reasoning that writing out my obsessive thoughts on Clannad would help me process what was going on.
But I figured out something that I think is true. So here goes.
Each alternate world is someone's mind, which interfaces through our body. Tomoya, for whatever reason, wasn't firmly "interfaced" into his own body, and so therefore could wander around his own mindscape during dreams. Ushio was the same, being related to Tomoya, and so the two of them could share their mind and dreamscapes. Their worlds could mesh. Tomoya isn't really a robot, but that is how he sees himself, which is why he appears as such. The same goes for Ushio, who just sees herself as a girl.
The two of them share dreams for years, because minds are not restricted by time. Only the body is restricted by time, so Tomoya and Ushio could have been talking since the start of the show without any trouble.
During Tomoya's time on earth he had unleashed certain lights, which were stored inside of him. These lights ARE Ushio. Ushio is the combined total of the happiness of Tomoya and Nagisa. She is Tomoya and Nagisa's wish.
Well, eventually Ushio and Tomoya actually meet and things start to change. The two of them don't want to just share dreams (remembered or not) anymore, they want Nagisa. They want family, like all of us do. But the two of them alone are not enough. So Ushio decides to make her wish, using herself as the "barter", so things can be made right. She gives up the limited time she had with her father so that way all of them can be together. She's the only one who can do it because if the others did something like this they'd have to give up themselves to do it, which is something that they can't do and be with Nagisa. Like it or not, but God has rules to this thing, as evidenced by Shima. It only makes sense then to assume that Ushio really is the only one who can make this wish. What's her wish?
Give Mamma back to Papa and me.
But the trouble is not with Ushio. It's with Tomoya. Will Tomoya be able to let go of his bitterness over meeting Nagisa to be with her again? Thankfully, Tomoya finally comes through! In total faith (and blindness to Ushio's plan) he lets go of his bitterness, which allows God to finally give him the happy ending that he'd wanted all this time. Things resume as they should have, and the Okazaki family finally defeats the tragedy that had plagued it for so long.
This, in my opinion, is what happened. Keep in mind that I haven't beaten the Visual Novel, so I don't have a complete view of what's going on. But this is the closest that I can get.
HUGE kudos to Taylor. He made those videos in two weeks, flat. I can't believe the amount of work and energy that he puts in to making this little blog so awesome.
Taylor, you are the reason why this blog works. Thank you so much.
Part 1 is over, but Part 2 (My Personal Ending) will be covered tomorrow. Check back tomorrow!