I never actually think that I would’ve watched another CLAMP anime. Well, guess I was wrong. Kobato is yet another anime on my Fall Anime Weekly Watchlist. Bwahahaha…
The opening… called “Magic Number”, calm joyful singing from Maaya Sakamoto, nice visual animation fitting for the theme of the series in general and overall, pretty good if you ask me.
The ending, “Jellyfish’s Confession”, sung by Megumi Nakajima with her nice soothing soft singing, also a basic visual screening of the mysterious bottle Kobato holds spinning around at a slow speed rate with the credit’s spinning slowly around with it too. Also at the end shows a quick preview of the next episode and the title (like the ED of Umineko). Dunno if this is just for the first episode or will lag on for 13 or so episodes. Seems basic if you ask me.
A little flashback to start off. The first CLAMP anime I watched was back in my childhood in 2001 when I watched Cardcaptors Sakura, which happened to air on TV straight after school. You know, the time when anime was widely available on TV. I can still remember the day where I almost rage due to Cardcaptors not airing due to a certain breaking news report suddenly airing on all channels (Hint if it doesn’t ring a bell; nine eleven).
Anyhow, great series, although not actually watched the first episode but soon grasped on what the series was all about (I had a thing during that time when I virtually always miss the first episode of a new show and soon getting to know the story from the second episode and so on). Obviously, I had to put though the cheesy English dub (which wasn’t really a bother for me at the time). 3 or 4 years later, I actually broke into tears when they aired the final episode (lol), when Sakura held the “Hope” card the screen fading to black. -sniff-
Moving to recent times, the last CLAMP anime I had watch was actually Chobits back in 2006, where it was the start to me being introduced to the H eroge world (no kidding). Anyhow, Chobits was a great anime to watch, panties, robots called persocoms for some kind of reason, and some ethical issues going on about Men ditching real women and preferring an electric personal robot human.
Now back to the present day, now comes Kobato. Virtually the 3rd CLAMP anime I’d ever watched (Tsubasa and the rest seems Shojo =P).
Just saying this first; I actually haven’t read a wiki or even a summary upon watching this first episode. So every at first seemed experimental. After all, I was talked into watching by a buddy of mine…
Anyway, summary! Well copy pasta’d from Wiki…
Kobato is sweet and perky girl, but also extremely naive about the world around her. She has a “mission”, which is to fill a mysterious bottle of hers with the suffering from people’s hearts so her wish to go a certain place that she desires to go can be granted. However, she has a restriction in that she is not allowed to fall in love with any person whom she heals the heart of.
So the main point of this series is a strange and naive girl who has a mission to fill a weird science-fiction bottle with the remnants of many individual’s suffering hearts so that she can grant her wish to go to a certain place where she desires to go? Wow I can see many endings like the many in H-games of how this series will turn out.
Firstly, we have Kobato Hanato. A strange and naive girl we first see at the start. So strange and naive I doubt that she isn’t even a normal human being, and I’m not being hypothetical here. Voiced by Kana Hanazawa, who also voiced the loli Sengoku (Bakemonogatari), Sharon (Pandora Hearts), Zange-chan (Kannagi) and also Satomi from Higurashi. I felt a resemblance of her voice somewhere during in the first episode… (God knows where she lives or where her family is)
Next, we have Ioryogi, who seems to be a ripped version of Snoopy Dog but dyed in various levels of blue and is a companion of Kobato. Who, in the first episode, tests Kobato’s adaptation of the world and will give her the bottle to fill the remnants of people’s suffering hearts if she passes (what this episode is all about, Kobato aquiring the strange bottle). Often, Ioryogi yells at Kobato for her incompetence and screw ups, leading to him making nicknames for her, including Dobato (deriving to “Stupid Bird”) and the one at the end of this episode which I seem to forgot. -_-
Straight from this, I can already see a resemblance of the characters with the one in Cardcaptors. Due to CLAMPs habit of making references and parodies of its previous projects, I have a judgement that Kobato’s character design seems to be based of Sakura’s design, and Ioryogi being a reincarnation of Kero, the stuffed animal companion of Sakura. Heck, even the story itself. I mean…
Cardcaptors = Sakura retrieving all the clow cards she released in the first episode.
Kobato = Kobato collecting people’s suffering hearts so that she can grant her wish to go to the place she really desires.
See the correlation here, Kobato seems to be the opposite of Cardcaptors in means of the plot…
Sakura = Kobato
Kero = Kero
Lee = Fujimoto
At least that’s what I presume…
Not only the intended plot and the characters but also that strange bottle, it has the chibi wings similar to the wings Sakura has on her costumes and on her staff. Okashii wa ne…
Leading to our next character intro. Here we have Kiyokazu Fujimoto. Who appears at the time rescuing Kobato from a blow at an unsuspecting guy who just got burnt from Ioryogi’s fire blast. Fujimoto also appears later on in the Sakura Viewing festival, working at some food bar, and due to some circumstances, he takes his leave taking care of something. Which then Kobato takes his place as a temporary staff at that bar (as an apology for smashing the crockery when she intended to throw a ball back at some kids). He also has a cold, blunt and sarcastic personality to him, probably due to this he’s usually popular with the girls.
Onto the episode itself. Well, at first we see Kobato walking around town, coming across many things and of course, screwing things up. In the second half, Kobato passed by a Sakura Cherry Blossom viewing festival, where she somehow works temporarily at some bar (due to lack of staff) and in the process making some mighty fine nabe. Which at first being a disaster…
Oh lol… But thinking it’ll taste like Saya’s bentou from Onidere, well, I beg to differ. It actually turns out alright. Even so that the manager is adding the natto on his menu. Despite just being random ingredients like Milk and Chocolate into the mix.
I wonder if Ioryogi can eat like Kero…
1st Task – Kobato VS Acting like a normal civilian at a normal park
2nd Task – Kobato taking out the trash
My views on Kobato fitting for a younger general audience has been diminished.
After many minutes of thinking…
Well, that failed.
3rd Task – Interacting with humans
Asked out to get some “tea” and following them to a “cafe”…
BOOM! And the dirt is gone! =failed
Task 4 – Making Nabe
As shown earlier on, looking it was gonna be a fail, it was a pass!
Task 5 – Making a constant crying baby fall to sleep.
Have to say, this is really the warmest tinkly feeling part of the episode to me. And hah, man Kobato has an awesome singing voice.
Okay, Ioryogi DOES look like Snoopy.
Picking up massive amounts of attention, hordes of people group hug Kobato wanting her to sing again, and after being dragged away and singing all evening to night, the day has come to an end.
Soo did Kobato pass?
（ ﾟДﾟ） <- Fitting smiley for the shock pic.
But wait! After the granny from before came by again thanking her for singing to her grandson to sleep…
What a nice pleasant passing face.
DING DING DING! Kobato earns 140 points! Even though there weren’t really some point scheme and a minimum point to earn a bottle, she did it! And thus ends the episode.
Well looking at the second episode it seems that we’ll dig into the story a bit more when Kobato begins to work at a Kindergarten or something… (Dunno why its pronounced “Kindergarten” and not Kindergarden”).
So until the next time~