Tomoya and Tomoyo have been dating for a month, and today happens to be the day of the student council elections. When Tomoyo gets elected to be student council president, the two are very happy, and Tomoya reminds her that her goal is to preserve the row of sakura trees that line the way to school. It quickly becomes clear to him though that his girlfriend is quite popular amongst the student body, yet everyone sees him as a delinquent and questions what relationship he has with her. To make matters worse, Tomoyo becomes incredibly busy in her new role, and she creates a minor incident when she uses the school’s PA system to tell Tomoya not to wait for her after school one day. This gets the two in trouble, and in light of it, the faculty raise concerns about her past and about her relationship with Tomoya. Tomoyo doesn’t let it get to her, but it bothers Tomoya, and as the school festival rolls around, the two spend less and less time together. On the day of the festival, he finally gets some alone time with her, and the two nearly kiss, but they’re interrupted by the vice-president who’s here to force Tomoyo to go take care of more duties that require her attention.

Tomoyo has no choice but to go, and after she leaves, the vice-president warns Tomoya not to continue hanging around her. Tomoya thinks that the vice-president is jealous, but the vice-president claims that he merely thinks that Tomoyo is someone who can reach high places and that Tomoya is dragging her down. He also points out that Tomoya should know that he can’t do anything for Tomoyo, and Tomoya doesn’t have an answer for that. The teachers also put pressure on Tomoya, and the final straw comes after the vice-president informs Tomoya that one of the alumni supporting them for preserving the sakura trees had heard a bad rumor about Tomoyo leaving Tomoya’s house in the morning. Tomoyo herself tells Tomoya that it’s not a big deal, but Tomoya decides that they should break up, citing how she has a goal and how she probably won’t reach it if she stays with him. Tomoyo attempts to argue that Tomoya would be lost in his life without her, however Tomoya feels that he’ll do fine and notes how he’d rely on her for everything if she was around. Even when Tomoyo confesses that she loves him, Tomoya claims that he hadn’t felt love for her, and she finally accepts the break-up. Shortly after Tomoyo walks away, Tomoya starts crying.

In the aftermath, Tomoya begins applying himself to school and righting his life, and every now and then, he hears of how Tomoyo is excelling. As winter arrives and graduation time nears, he and Sunohara both apply for jobs, and he finally finds one inside the city. It’s not until graduation day when he goes home early that he runs into Tomoyo again on the path lined by the snow-covered sakura trees. She had been waiting for him because she wanted to tell him that it had finally been decided that the sakura trees wouldn’t be cut down. Tomoya thinks that her dream was fulfilled, but Tomoyo notes that she lost something in exchange for it: she hadn’t been able to spend time with the one she loved. Upon hearing that she loves him even more than before and that she had been watching as he worked hard through the months without her, Tomoya tells her about the job he got at a thrift shop inside the city. He then explains that the two of them can’t move forward together because she will definitely go far after she graduates whereas he’ll still be in that city. To Tomoya’s surprise, Tomoyo vows to be at his side, and when he tries to tell her that she has higher places she can reach, she reveals that being with him is worth more than any such place. These words make Tomoya feel that an obstruction in his path has finally been lifted, and he promises that he’ll go to where Tomoyo is too. Both crying now, the two embrace.

Sometime later in the springtime, Tomoya heads off to work and is met by Tomoyo carrying a bento for him.


Seeing how this was an alternate world, I was rather tempted to title this “CLANNAD PARALLEL WORKS.” In all seriousness though, I think I prefer this world to that of the main story. For whatever reason, TomoyaXTomoyo feels much more natural to me than TomoyaXNagisa. Maybe it’s the fact that the two are already so far in their relationship here (helped along by how they started the episode already together and then by the quick passage of time) whereas Nagisa and Tomoya just don’t feel like they’re quite at that point yet. After Story may very well change my mind about that, but I’m sure it could change right back if Kyoto Animation ever animates Tomoyo After.

Overall, I found this episode good, if a tiny bit predictable – i.e. it was fairly obvious that the two weren’t going to stay separated by the end. I attribute that less to bad writing and more to just the constraints of trying to fit everything into a single half-hour. Regardless, I definitely still enjoyed watching it and am glad this got animated. It would have been nice for this to be stretched out over two or three episodes, but beggars can’t be choosers. I might even go as far as to say that this makes up for how abbreviated Tomoyo’s part ended up being in the main story (though not Kyou and Ryou’s). Just as importantly, this also got me interested in CLANNAD again with only a few months until After Story airs (this Fall according to MOON PHASE’s list), so I’m looking forward to seeing more.


  1. Huhwhat now??!! O.O I never would’ve seen imagined somethign like this being made in a million years… @_@

    Now if only they’d do this with other based-on-dating-sim anime out there…I wouldn’t mind seeing a bonus episode of Fate/Stay Night focusing on ShirouxRin… 😀

  2. Yeah although Tomoyo after, was really good it was sad too… and if i want to be left with any good memories of Clannad i want it to be a happy one, so i think ill love After Story when it comes out… But then Also this episode story before any after story is the best…

  3. The snow scene at the end was something I really wanted to see animated, ever since I heard Clannad was getting an anime, and KyoAni did a good job with it so despite having an entire route shoved into a single episode, I’m glad they animated it.

  4. The snow scene was rather low on colour and had a lot of distance and still shots so it doesn’t look especially hard to animate. It seems like an obvious choice and a fan pleasing one as well for it’s significance.

    Actually I’m probably breaking taboo here, but the episode in general wasn’t all that incredibly animated in my opinion. As I mentioned, a lot of distance shots, behind the speaker views (to avoid having to animate lip flap) and still shots were used. It was par, but not outstanding, not like their reputation should entail. I don’t think it’s that Kyoani has gotten worse though, just that everybody else has stepped up over the past few years since Haruhi and many have even overtaken them like Satelite with Macross Frontier and Bones with their latest Bonen No Xamdou and Kyoani hasn’t really improved all that much from where they were 3 years ago. I guess you tend to stagnate as well when you make shows very similar in appearance like Haruhi, Kanon and Clannad are and when the setting doesn’t change substantially from episode to episode.

    I also think that at this point I’ve tired and disinterested in the character designs they’ve had for Haruhi, Kanon and Clannad as well. The Kyoani look has sort of gone as far as it can for me and I think it’s really time for them to look into a new visual style in order to keep things fresh in the future.

  5. This is just a summary of Tomoyo’s Route in the game, in other words this is what the ending (episode 23) would be like if he had chosen Tomoyo instead of Nagisa.

    Tomoyo FTW!!!

  6. @ Kaioshin Sama

    While this episode wasn’t anything special, it was rather nicely animated and consistent with its quality.

    If you’re saying that Macross Frontier has superb animation, you need to take a second look at the 2-D animation and stop being blind-sided by the CG. A good portion of the traditional 2-D in that series is below average in quality. Nonetheless, the production is handled well enough so that most tend not to notice.

  7. “It is of course an alternate world to the main storyline, though I think I prefer this one more. For whatever reason, TomoyaXTomoyo feels much more natural to me than TomoyaXNagisa.”

    This is blasphemy! This is madness!

    I must be the only one that thought the Tomoyo’s route was pretty sub-par when I played the game I guess. It is the most “romantic” of the main girls’ routes, but it is light on drama, and given how Tomoya’s delinquent aspect was heavily downplayed in the anime compared to the game, I can’t see how this episode can turn out to be good.

    And again, the end of the Clannad school story anime was a bit of the letdown simply because Nagisa’s story doesn’t end there… heck, even her school story arc in the game goes longer than what shown in the anime, but it becomes incredibly depressing at the end, which is why they cut it after the school festival.

    The title is Clannad (=family) for a reason… the school part is only a prelude, the real meat is in the after-story. If they can manage to show everything and conclude with the true ending I have no doubt it will be one of the best anime drama ever.

  8. Man, I hope the subs come out soon. I would really enjoy watching the TomoyaXTomoyo (Why do their names have to be so similiar…), I have read the manga on Tomoyo After, and it is a sad story but I enjoyed it. If they decide to make a series based on Tomoyo after, I’d definatly would watch it.

  9. this is not what happened in the visual game of tomoyo after. but i still found out this episode somewhat good. it did get me tear eyed but i kinda hated it a little bit at the same time. this episode was illustrating the weak side of tomoya while in the game tomoya was tough while tomoyo was weak. i though that tomoyo was going to fail with her objective without tomoya but it did not happen. at the end both of them got their objectives. it was kinda crappy because of that and like i always say, “i hate unmanly protagonists”

  10. Agreeing with Steelman. TomoyaXTomoyo is sweet and all, but I think the Nagisa line is what really made this story stand out.

    Still, Tomoyo is a hotty-hot-hotty and I’m anxiously waiting for this to get subbed 😀

  11. Hmmm……

    la verdad no soy gran fan de tomoyo en realidad no me agrada -.- (hate)
    no se..
    mi favorita es Fuko-chan y me gusta mas tomoya x nagisa!
    pero bueno solo es mi opinion igual voy a ver aunq es similar al juego xD

  12. YES YES YES! This is what I was waiting for, I agree with you 100%, the NagisaXTomoya just doesn’t seem to fit, I wanted a little more development with TomoyaXTomoyo, and now I get to see that happen, WHOO! Can’t wait to watch this

  13. I disagree this is more natural. They go from not even close to being a couple to being completely rabu rabu in this. Even in an AU world, it doesn’t work for me because I haven’t see Tomoya be interested in Tomoyo at all. It was interesting for fanservice for Tomoyo fans, but did nothing for me otherwise. Nagisa x Tomoya had a lot more about family with Nagisa’s mom and dad, bringing up issues with his father and being together as a whole then this does. It’s nice and romantic though, but lacking.

  14. @nelly
    I presume that you think Tomoya x Nagisa has more background than Tomoya x Tomoyo…
    If that’s the case, then read the manga of Tomoyo After ~Dear Shining Memories~…

  15. AWESOME! I am a Tomoyo and Kyou fan, though I like Nagisa as well, it is kinda obvious and I want a non canon ending. However, I honestly prefer Tomoyo or Kyou to be with Tomoya, though Tomoyo is the better than the latter, I still want to see an alternate story where Kyou and Tomoya is dating. Man wouldn’t that be interesting! I could still see Kyou being tsundere though lol, or taking advantage of Tomoya as usual.

  16. Kaioshin: I’d understand the design fatigue you’re feeling, but still it’s a little too harsh. Despite their claim to fame, KyoAni has always been a small studio, with not only a relatively small staff (compared to the 6-floor enterprise Sunrise has), but a limited amount of source material to draw on, MOST of it so far coming from Key (AIR, KANON, and CLANNAD have all similar designs), while Haruhi (drawn by Noizi Itou) is shamelessly bishoujo from what we’ve seen in the novels (the variation we saw in the TV series was VERY welcome).

    Lucky Star, being a yonkoma adaptation, is of course stylistically different, as well as Full Metal Panic. I think you’re mixng the STUDIO STYLE with the style of the SOURCE MATERIAL, and as far as I’ve seen KyoAni doesn’t have a distinct ‘personal’ style yet unlike, say, Production I.G. or Bones. Also, you’re neglecting the fact that the studio has on a Key series adaptation roll. You’d probably feel less so if the studio cranked out more series in consecutive seasons that presented different aesthetics (compare what BONES did with Ouran to their outing in Darker than Black), but the fact is, its major clients (KEY and Kodakawa, respectively) have other plans.

    As for Tomoyo After… I’ll repeat what I usually say in Jason’s blog (AoMM/Derailed): Tomoyo’s story, while pleasing in its own way, has more romance in it than family (plus it panders to the Moe modes Tomoyo herself represents), which is the point of Nagisa’s School Life/After Story arcs. I found it so-so when I played through it, but then again, I’m probably one of the people the game is NOT made for (a well-adjusted non-fujoshi non-moe loving anime-watching woman).

    Myssa Rei
  17. Nelly, Tomoyo did show interest with Tomoya in the anime, but miner because their intent was for him to end up with Nagisa… and u should not be looking at Tomoyo’s love interest history for Tomoya in the Anime 1-23 because this is in the Alternate world where she did have interest hence them being a couple… And yeah this for the fans. who already know the history and all that… and i was pretty satisfied with what they did in one episode…

  18. i thought it was quite an enjoyable episode all in all. The only slight thing that was missing or that i wished happened was sumone nailing that student council member in the face or sumthing. His smug attitude reaaally got on my nerves. Ah wells, u cant have everything, and at least it ends happily.

  19. this may be irrelevant but anyway.

    in the original clannad series there’s always these dreams of this girl playing with robotic-toys that gained life, i don’t understand it at all -.- someone willing to explain?

  20. hmmm: Show Spoiler ▼

    Myssa Rei
  21. @Myssa Rei

    thanks for info.
    while im still going at it im gonna ask a new question.

    there is the clannad game, clannad anime,this tomoyo chapter, Tomoyo After: It’s a Wonderful Life (game) and apparently som manga also.
    if it’s not to much im asking for i would like to see a timeline so i play/watch everything in the “right” order.

  22. > Myssa Rei

    Can you please elaborate on why you say that Tomoyo After is more about romance than “family”? Everyone in Tomoyo After has family issues: it’s basically how everyone wanted to protect their family and sacraficing themselves for it, as a continuation of what happens in Clannad.

    If you’re just refering to Tomoyo’s route in Clannad, then you have a point. But it’s no more or less about family than say, Kyou’s route, for example.

  23. @hmmmm

    Clannad: Nagisa route -> Clannad After Story
    Clannad: Tomoyo route -> Tomoyo After

    As simple as that. Ignore the other materials(manga) since they’ve screwed up the original, like a certain someone’s half sister turned into some random lost kid.


    There’s a vast difference between Nagisa and Tomoyo’s After Story. As with her route, Tomoyo and Tomoya’s relationship is still the core of the story, only with added interactions with the supporting cast. Nevermind the theme of the story is “Eternal Love”. While in Nagisa’s, It focuses with the relationship between Tomoya, Nagisa and the people around them, co-workers, the Furukawa family, and Tomoya’s own family. Including his father and daughter. Simply put, its on a wider scale than Tomoyo’s, hence the theme “Dango Daikazoku”.

  24. lol tomoyo after ….

    I really liked tomoyo’s main scenerio, before the after story

    man tomoyo after was like O_o;;wtf I’d rather just keep it to the main story

    I wonder if they’re going to do other peoples arc’s in small episodes?
    like the landlord lady that was pretty sad >:

  25. @Myssa: So are they actually like literally signed into this whole Key deal and can’t do anything else until the contract runs out. Is it that sort of deal? If so that’s a kick in the nuts to any attempt they might want to make at personal creativity.

    And now that you mentioned it, just listening to the dialogue, it definitely had more of a romantic ideal to it versus the family aspect I liked better in the TV series proper. It also felt almost cliche, almost cheesy at times. Perhaps it’s because I’ve been playing a little to much eroge lately, who knows. I can’t say I felt it was a very realistic portrayal of a romance either. It felt to much like the kind of stock storyline one would read in a visual novel. Probably because it was adapted almost word for word, or so I hear. It’s been a long time since I looked at the Clannad game script.

    You know though….sometimes I really wish Kyoani would take some more liberties in their adaptations and stray from the source material just a touch more. Not screw around with it of course, but maybe just exercise a little adapters privilege and maybe try to look at a scene from the games in a whole different manner in the process. It could help in a lot of cases where I end up saying something like, “You know, this is all just a tad predictable and feels like it’s catering to much to x”.

    This is again the case where you must absolutely be the person that game or anime is made for in order to enjoy it and with the Tomoyo Chapter this is especially the case I found (considering the focus is on her). I find that with a lot of Kyoani series I’ve seen too. Either you are the person it is intended for and you absolutely love everything about it as a result, or you aren’t and you get a sort of ho-hum feel about it as a result. Me being the type of person who is always trying to look at the bigger picture, and Clannad not always being the type of series that is going to strive to paint one makes this episode especially a hard one for me to get into. Nonetheless, with subs I managed to get about the same enjoyment out of it as the TV Series. That is to say a bit, but nothing overwhelming.

  26. > kuruze

    I don’t look at it that way. I don’t agree that just having more “members” makes the Clannad After Story more grand and more “family” like. There is still a very strong underlying family theme in Tomoyo After. Also it shows a transition of Tomoya/Tomoyo’s love from being purely romantic to one that is family, and other pairings in the game (including Kanako’s family issue) shows a similiar theme. A lot of Tomoyo After is about what it means to accepting others into their “family” too. The whole issue with Tomo (a good third of Tomoyo After) is also way more complex in its family issue that anything that is offered in Clannad. The Tomoya/Tomoyo pairing also makes a stark contrast to that of Tomoya/Nagisa, Tomoyo/Tomoya showed much more maturity and independence in their thought.

  27. @senshi

    No, its not about having more members, its how they explore the relationships between them. You may say that Tomoyo After is the same but having no blood relation with Tomoya makes a big difference in the case of Takafumi and Tomo. They’re still Tomoyo’s siblings first to him. Just look at how he views Sanae, and his talks with Akio.

    “The whole issue with Tomo (a good third of Tomoyo After) is also way more complex in its family issue that anything that is offered in Clannad”

    Parenthood and starting life over. Thats something that tops Tomo’s issue by a mile.

    “Tomoyo/Tomoya showed much more maturity and independence in their thought.”

    I doubt that. Over the course of her route and After Story, Nagisa’s character developed more and matured alot. She shares many traits with Tomoyo but Nagisa comes out as the “Motherly” one while Tomoyo remains the big sister. Like how she reprimands Tomoya, and how she comforts him during a certain untimely screw up by a certain person. Also, Tomoya realize that he needs to grow up and work really hard to give Nagisa a comfortable life, which he doesnt do in Tomoyo’s route. Unlike the OVA, he stayed as a delinquent in the VN. He never really tried, sadly. Lastly, the final arc of the After Story made him very mature and father-like, as Kyou mentioned.

  28. “just saw the ep”. . . .was hoping for tomoya to get hit by a train warner bro’s style at the end there…. must truly suck to have low self-esteem, and don’t nobody come and tell me he was being considerate/mature/thoughtful. cuz in this scenario the dude was a straight BIATCH.

    BROOKLYN otaku
  29. I must admit, this one episode did what an entire season could not do for me. And Tomoya has now moved up to the top of my list for best harem male protagonist (sorry Negi).

  30. I really do prefer Tomoyo’s arc; I think it is, overall, a much better way to go for Tomoya. He has already had one abusive family at his home; he doesn’t need another, much less dependents as opposed to someone who can support him equally. Economically supporting someone else and/or being a parent has nothing to do with “good” qualities, let alone as compared with a free young person who is able to explore life without pathetic ties.

    Watching this episode, though, I kind of wished there were more elements that told us this was really ‘another world,’ like, for instance, I think some of the other girls (but not nagisa) could have been used as background characters, showing them as different people leading different, separate lives as well. One episode perhaps just can’t allow a deep enough exploration.

  31. Yeah I prefer Tomoyo’s route over Nagisa….Nagisa is just another Shiori clone, and if feels more like Tomoyo’s younger sister than someone he’s romantically involved with. Tomoyo clings to Tomoya, and visa-versa in the series, and its like they can’t live apart. (Hence why the last parting in Tomoyo ever after was more emotional than the Nagisa one in Clannad.)

    And by the way I like Kaioshin Sama’s points on shortcuts used in this animation–I never thought of them.

  32. Just watched this again after playing her route in the game. And this is by far the ONE episode that makes the anime, they really caught the games feeling with this.
    And I also feel that they waste the anime on the Nagisa route, and especially after seeing this episode again. This episode and the game will be remembered.


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