CCS Clear Card Arc Episode 2 kept up with the quality of the first episode. As I mentioned, I probably won’t review every episode, but I was anticipating this episode all week long, so I thought, why not.
My memory of the manga is hazy, so I’m not always sure which dialogue was included in the manga script and which ones were added to flesh out the anime. First off, I’ve always enjoyed “filler” episodes in the original CCS anime—some filler episodes actually ended up becoming some of my favorite ones, such as the “Dream Card” episode, Meilin’s childhood flashback episode and the elevator episode. I’m too lazy to look up the episode numbers, but I’m sure fans will know which episodes I am referring to anyway.
Some of my favorite parts of CCS were where the crew were idly sitting around and chatting and just being their adorable selves, in between all the battling cards. So I especially loved the lunchtime picnic scene this episode. How do they all keep that kneeling posture throughout the meal though? They are such proper kids. I am very glad to here the crew mention both Wei and Meilin—I think it’s a good sign that Meilin might make at least a one-episode return this season. I thought it odd that they included a flashback image of Wei, but not of Meilin, especially since they mentioned her matsuri photo. And there was something fishy about Syaoran saying “You guys know better about news about Meilin than me.” It was sad he didn’t get to go to the festival with Meilin, and the fanfic writer in me couldn’t help going—evil Li Clan Elders, keeping Syaoran so busy!
I really enjoyed the art class scene, because the drawing of the woman playing violin kind of pulled my heartstrings a bit, because it reminded me of Nadeshiko. I liked reference to Tomoyo’s design roots, sketching of the designs like a pro, and also a glimpse of her pattern book. The other thing that pulled my heartstrings both last episode and this one is how much happier Syaoran looks compared to when he first came to Tomoeda. I think the Dash Card episode was the first one we saw him half-smile in in the original series. Now, he’s smiling so often, gets along with his friends, even eats lunch with them, and can carry normal conversations with people other than Sakura and Tomoyo. The other point is, even though he has Sakura and is back in Japan, how he still manages to looks so lonely in between shots. I loved the crew’s conversation about clubs—as predicted, Sakura and Chiharu’s in cheerleading, Tomoyo in chorus, and Naoko is befittingly in the drama club. Syaoran is busy so he’s not joining in any clubs—but we see him happily playing soccer again in Episode 2—could I ask for anything more? Syaoran making a goal (I presume because it was off screen) and happily being glomped by his teammates, jumping up and down like a proper middle schooler, with Sakura watching on from the art classroom. And Yamazaki-kun is tall so he got scouted to the basketball club. I love how Tomoyo slyly points out that if Syaoran joins an athletic club, Sakura would be able to cheer for him. I also like how they did so much to flesh out Naoko’s character in the past two episodes, since she was pushed to the side often in the original series, and I’ve also taken a renewed interest in her these days.
I’m glad Tomoyo came to the rescue with the Siege Card with her clothespins, and that Sakura is wearing battle costumes again. I found the last bit with Mizuki Kaho taking care of Nakuru at the end rather endearing, considering I’m not feeling too kindly to Eriol for being so mysterious again. But Eriol does have great interior décor taste. Why does Ruby Moon want to return right away—I wouldn’t mind more fleshing out of her character as well. She’s a lot cuter away from nagging Touya all the time to keep him apart from Yukito.
I don’t know why but I can’t help enjoy Touya and Sakura’s sibling bickering so much—their encounters are some of my favorite parts of each episode. If I had a little sister as cute as Sakura, I’d bully her all the time too. No Fujitaka this episode. I don’t know why but it sounded like Touya was being a bit jealous of Sakura over Yukito too this episode though. And Kero-chan is a glutton, and of course Touya cooks okonomiyaki.
And how glad I am to see Kero-chan introduce outfits of the week again at the end of the episode.
Random remark, but last week, one of our designer interns had a pink Card Captor Sakura mouse pad in the office (it was one of her magic circle), and I couldn’t help pointing and exclaiming, “Card Captor Sakura!” so excitedly. I felt an immediate bond with the new intern. I said, “My favorite anime of my youth!” I’m not sure if I ever uttered that sentence out in public before, let alone work. She was like, “A new season of CCS started,” and I was like “I know!” The other two designers were like, “I don’t know what that is,” and we went, “How can you not know?”