What a beautifully rendered piece of anime. Shame about the abundance of DULLNESS and the childish nature of the story.
I’ll begin with the pretty-much-perfect visuals. They do, completely deserve high praise. The detail is awesome, animation professional; with exquisite world designs and artwork, and a familiar but respectable visual style. At first I was a bit thrown by the elongated characters, but this style won me over in the end. I’ve rarely seen CLAMP falter when it comes to visuals and this is no exception. Each world is gorgeous in its own way and gives off an often breathtaking aura.
The soundtrack of Tsubasa Chronicle is definately one of the strongest points of this title. The soundtrack is the main reason this title had me hooked on from the first episode. The opening and ending werent quite my taste, but still pretty good nevertheless. The soundtrack is composed by Yuki Kaiyura, who also did the soundtracks for Noir and .Hack//SIGN, so if you have seen either one of those titles, you know what to expect a little. If you are one of those people that doesnt like the soundtrack being so overly present in an anime, then I guess the soundtrack of this title will not appeal to you.The story, so far, cannot be rated completely as it seems that the main storyline wont pick up until the second season. Tsubasa chronicle takes places in all sorts of dimensions, where the good guys have to collect feathers to let Sakura regain her memory. Mostly, when they are searching for this feather, they will get caught up in the storyline of that dimension. These little stories are pretty wel developed, but hints at a greater plot (namely the story of Syaoran, Kurogane and Fay) are scarce. During the end of this first season some hints are made, but nothing that makes us anything wiser at all. I hope they do a better job at that during the second season, because those small stories can get tiring.
The story is where anime falls down, while the manga goes up, the anime just was way too much extended and fillerish. The entire first season(taking out filler eps) would fit into ~5 episodes. While the anime used up the beginning material to create entire season, it was a mere few volumes introduction in manga. Another bad thing in this anime was the atmosphere. I mean, the whole point of the first part of manga was the change of atmosphere. Tsubasa Chronicle is exactly that kind of thing, where atmosphere goes from happy and adventuristic to angsty and sad. The animators decided to omit this fact. So instead of atmosphere change, we got an adventure style boring anime. The other fact, which enraged the original mangaka, CLAMP, was the handling of the storyline itself. The animators took freedom to take out what they thought was “unnecessary” or “Inappropriate”, and to put in something they thought will fit. They did very bad job here, because of this many characters seemed two-dimensional(the exact thing what would they seem if you would take out their expressions and famous lines out and put in some lame jokes). But the worst part of handling was the part called by original manga an “insult to their work”. The animators got a little more brave. and changed the story direction. The “Library” arc, who was supposed to be a big “wtf” twist with very unexcepted ending was changed into traditional “adventure”. I am talking about how they finished that arc. they basically omitted the entire end of it and replaced it with some gross chibi-chimera saying that main characters aren’t bad and that they helped the country. Instead of angsty fight-filled post-apocalyptic world and biggest twist, for which entire first part was intended, we get some stupid “king” storyline. I am REALLY disappointed on how they “adapted” the story so.
While i still enjoy the manga, the anime was ruined by the things pointed out above