I love CLAMP, truly I do. I fiercely admire and worship their work, from Card Captor Sakura, to Man of 20 Faces, to X1999 to Magic Knight Rayearth and I cried buckets over their happy and tragic endings. So here now is my latest review on one of CLAMP’s ongoing manga, Tsubasa Reservoir Chronicle. Be warned, this post is spoiler filled!
In Animax, it was dubbed in English and retitled as Chronicle of the Wings. The English translation absolutely reeks (of poor adaptation and sub-par quality)! I bought the first season of Tsubasa Reservoir Chronicle so I got to see the anime in its “undiluted dialogue”. I may be a snob when it comes to anime dubbing, I’m of the firm opinion that the Japanese language should be retained and that it should be subtitled, I can still appreciate well-made dubbing like Ranma, Gokusen and even the tagalog version of Naruto. In this instance however, Chronicle of the Wings is an absolute dud. And its pretty disappointing really that Animax cut away a lot of scenes, neglected important nuances of the dialogue like since after Sakura has lost her memory, she calls Syaoran, “Syaoran-kun” and that in fact, it was the reason how Syaoran defeated the emperor because he knew the man wasn’t keeping the real Sakura captive.
Also, a funny thing about the Kuro-Fai triangle is that Fai calls Kurogane a lot of weird names and that’s the comedy of it. “Kuro-pon, Kuro-tan, Kuro-pi” it’s a smorgasbord of Fai’s pet names for Kurogane. Also about the anime, the score can be annoying, the opera-like music whenever Syaoran thinks about his mission, the constant replay of the time when Sakura lost her memory and the Yuuko (the dimensional witch) bargain, are even more irritating! Also annoying about animax is that they actually cut or edited the part where Syaoran admits he’s blind in his right eye! Dang! It was such a good angle on the story and they actually took it away! ARGH! Words fail me when I try to describe how pivotal that fact is and how he and his first teacher, Seishirou share the same defective eye and why he always gets injured on the right side.
Kurogane’s bloodthirsty spiels have also been cut and it was the essence of why he got banished. There are also a lot of filler episodes in the anime and for those who read the manga, the anime doesn’t contain half the substance and power of the manga.
Okay, here are some good points. First, as an animation, Chronicle of the Wings gets better every so often. Initially, the drawings were almost too thin and the colors not as vivid but when I got to see the movie, the title is “Princess of the Birdcage Land” and the animation improved considerably! The rendering is not as totemo kawaii as Card Captor Sakura’s but at last the characters are beginning to look the way they should be!
The last few episodes were pretty good, I did like it when Sakura sang about wanting to remember the old days and how she misses it. I have just finished season 1 and while I firmly believe the manga is so much better and regardless of the fact that Animax butchered a lot of parts in the anime, I will still be an avid viewer of the Tsubasa Reservoir Chronicle because for me, the Sakura-Syaoran pairing is just MAGIC. ^_^
How far will you go, to save the one you love?