Tsubasa Shunraiki – 02 (finale)

ツバサ 春雷記 Episode 02
Tsubasa: Spring Thunder – 02
Tsubasa Shunraiki – 02

SPOILER Summary/Synopsis:

Tsubasa Shunraiki - 02Syaoran-clone enters the dream world and seeing Watanuki, he expels the xxxHOLiC character but not before Syaoran urges Watanuki to do what he can as the other part of Syaoran. With Watanuki gone, Syaoran-clone is determined to get the feather from him no matter what. He produces his sword as does Syaoran and the two clash steal and magic. As the others wait outside the giant sakura tree and wait in anticipation, Syaoran-clone and Syaoran fight with Syaoran ultimately losing the contest due to the superior magic Syaoran-clone has, thanks to the magic he stole from Fay.

Tsubasa Shunraiki - 02Sakura cradles the injured Syaoran and defies Syaoran-clone’s wishes in doing so. Fei Wong Reed, observing from his hidden facility, orders the clone to kill Sakura. Syaoran-clone attempts to but finds he cannot. Yuuko-san, sensing what is happening in the dream world, states to Black Mokona that even if the mind forgets, the body remembers. Because the clone had traveled with Sakura for so long, he could not kill Sakura. Seeing this to be the case, Fei Wong orders Syaoran-clone to kill Syaoran.

Tsubasa Shunraiki - 02Syaoran-clone activates powerful magic which causes the sakura tree to split wide. He forces Sakura away and extracts the feather from Syaoran, who grabs the clone’s arm. Black goo emerges from the sakura tree and snares everyone outside as the two escape the dream. The feather comes free and both Syaoran’s go for it while attacking each other. Instead, their blades pierce Sakura, who’s somehow come between them. Both Syaoran’s are shocked and Sakura reveals she is a clone as well. She tells Syaoran that the real Sakura is waiting for him and as her body-soul dissolves into sakura petals, she attempts to confess to Syaoran-clone before disappearing.

Tsubasa Shunraiki - 02Kyle, one of Fei Wong’s associates who’s been on two different worlds with the group, emerges from a tear in space to retrieve the unconscious body of Sakura that had been resting in the boughs of the tree as well as the feather. He escapes, leaving the others to talk of events where Fay reveals that he knew Sakura was a fake from the start. Syaoran decides he wants to rescue both the clone and real Sakura and makes a wish of Yuuko-san. Kurogane and Fay also decide to accompany Syaoran. Tsubasa Shunraiki - 02Yuuko-san reveals that the price for their wish has been paid for by Watanuki, who sacrificed his own memories in order to make payment.

In his lair, Fei Wong now has the body of the clone Sakura and is closer to his goal of being able to grant his own wish as well as freely cross dimensions.

Tsubasa Shunraiki - 02Meanwhile back in Nihon Country, Princess Tomoyo pays Kurogane a visit, who knows she’s there before she announces herself. She is amused by this as he’s always known when she’s around. He answers that he always knows where she is at all times. Tomoyo presents Kurogane with a gift — his father’s sword Ginryuu. Though Kurogane had wanted it buried with his parents, Tomoyo had previously promised Kurogane’s mother that Kurogane would get the sword and that promise trumped Tsubasa Shunraiki - 02Kurogane’s wish. Accepting the sword, Kurogane again vows to serve Tomoyo and to return to her side after this mission is over. Tomoyo blesses Kurogane and the sword, addressing him by the name she gave him — “Youou.”

The following day, Kurogane, Fay, and Syaoran are dressed as they were when the adventure first started. Yuuko-san directs them to Fei Wong Reed’s hideout — the frozen in time lands of Clow Country.

Thoughts/Review:

Tsubasa Shunraiki - 02Ah yes — the infamous story where dream Sakura reveals she too was only a clone, thus meaning the Syaoran and Sakura at the beginning of the series were only clones and where the manga series went south for me. I was reminded of all this as I watched this episode and while I won’t spoil ahead for those who aren’t current with the manga, I will say that things get stranger from here on, should more of Tsubasa be animated.
Tsubasa Shunraiki - 02
One thing that this episode pointed out to me which had not stood out in the manga was how worthless all of the other characters are for the most part outside of Syaoran-clone, Syaoran-kun, and Sakura-chan. All they have to do for the most part is stand around looking at a sakura tree that’s spewing lots of cherry blossoms and splitting at times due to the fight going on in the dream pocket. Well, they do provide moments of exposition as well as “I hope they are doing OK” moments, but those later moments are mere filler.

Tsubasa Shunraiki - 02Another thing this episode did well was accent the gentle yet sweet relationship between Kurogane and Tomoyo. This element was present in the manga, but the scene when Tomoyo presents Ginryuu to Kurogane comes off exceptionally well to me. I think in that moment, I saw the actual love between the two characters that pretty much goes unspoken. It makes me wonder if CLAMP will have them end up as a couple (presuming of course we get any kind of “Good End” at all).

Tsubasa Shunraiki - 02Something else that stood out to me is how much effort went into the animation for the fight between Syaoran-clone and Syaoran-kun. The fight is very fluid and very well done. (I wish the fights in Fate/stay night would have been done this way but I digress.) Because animation like this isn’t cheap, the production team makes some sacrifices during moments of exposition, where they will revert to artistic still images that are panned and scanned. That’s fine because during talky moments, we don’t need to see a whole lot of animation, right? Save it for the fights and that’s exactly what the production team did.
Tsubasa Shunraiki - 02
The episode’s end clearly is set up for another OVA/OAD series, should one be created. The problem is will such a series decide to skip over another wide swath of story?

I’ll write some final thoughts later but for what it was, this episode is not a bad adaptation and conclusion of the manga story.

x3 Tomoyo and Kurogane
Tsubasa Shunraiki - 02
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5 Responses to “Tsubasa Shunraiki – 02 (finale)”

  1. mastermack0 says:

    High five! You, me, and about a billion others all hate Tsubasa for the same reason (well, hate is a strong word): neotokyo and the cloning. Yeah, no one can even properly explain wahts happening in the manga now. But apparently the clones are the original’s parents or… something

  2. AstroNerdBoy says:

    I get the feeling that CLAMP had a good concept at the beginning for both xxxHOLiC and Tsubasa but the when they attempted to start resolving things, they went off the deep end.

  3. O-chan says:

    It’s Spiderman all over again!
    (If you don’t get the reference please ask…)

  4. AstroNerdBoy says:

    I’m asking (’cause I should be asleep now and instead, I’m streaming “Kannagi”). ^_^;

  5. Kal says:

    Yeah agreed. The story was going pretty well, with it’s dark moments, painful sacrifices, and difficult choices for Sakura and party. And then… Well, let’s just say the manga should have ended quite a bit of time ago. Too much filler 🙁

    Still, seeing it animated does make it fun. The Tomoyo/Kurogane moment, and the fights you mention, do really look very, very nice.

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