Show me more Anime like "Clannad"
October 8, 2013 12:05 AM   Subscribe

I just watched "Clannad" and "Clannad: After Story" (the tv series) and it was amazing. Please tell me about more things like that. They can be tv or movies, anime or not anime, as long as they have the same feel.

Until this past month the last anime I had watched was "Robotech" when I was about 11. Then I saw a few clips of the "Clannad" tv series, got the English-subtitled discs off Netflix, and was instantly hooked. I'd honestly put it up there with "Six Feet Under" on my all-time favorite tv shows list.

Netflix lists it as "quirky and sentimental," which I think is a big part of what I loved about it. "Clannad" is fairly down-to-Earth compared to most animes (relatively speaking), and I liked that too. I enjoyed the metaphysical and highly-stylized aspects, but I liked that it focused on something resembling life on Earth as we know it, as opposed to crazy magic powers/sci fi/superhero stuff.

But having that stuff is not a dealbreaker. All I want is that same feeling of emotional engagement and knowing there are things going on beneath the surface but not knowing exactly what (Actually I watched all of "Clannad" and "After Story" and still didn't get it until I read a blog that broke it all down.)

If you haven't seen "Clannad," you probably have no idea what I'm talking about and won't be able to help me. But hopefully at least a few of you have. I cannot speak Japanese at all, so I'll need subtitles to be available. Thanks!
posted by drjimmy11 to Media & Arts (9 answers total) 17 users marked this as a favorite
Best answer: These are movies, not series:
5 Centimetres Per Second
The Girl Who Leapt Through Time

They are both sentimental and realistic, even the one with time travel. There are tons of other animes based on visual novels like Clannad, for example, Kanon, Da Capo, White Album, Kiminozo, the infamous School Days, etc.

TV tropes page for Key Visual Arts, the studio that produced Clannad, Kanon, and Air.
posted by betweenthebars at 1:14 AM on October 8, 2013 [1 favorite]

Best answer: Hmm, I'm a big anime fan, and I have not seen any Clannad amazingly. So, I really can't give you a perfect recommendation for something similar. Honestly, since you seem like you haven't watched that much anime I'd recommend not locking yourself to a specific type of show, but embracing a wide variety. That's the strength of anime that most people don't realize: it's not cartoons as a subgenre of overall visual entertainment, it's an entire medium of entertainment unto itself. There are shows about literally everything for every age group. It's amazingly diverse with a seemingly infinitely wide span of creativity.

So, I know we're not supposed to self-link, but I'm going link you to MyAnimeList. I feel like I've been fortunate enough to watch a high percentage of incredible shows, so I'm eager to proselytize. The main reason I'm linking (here's the main website), though, is that that website is both an encyclopedia and a community, which will make recommendations in the vein of "if you liked this, you might like this." Go there now and start cataloging your burgeoning anime fandom right from the get-go.

Here's the Clannad page
, which has a couple of similar recommendations and also reviews from fans. (Fair warning: I have no clue whether the recommendations are good or not, so read the reviews and check out the rest of the site to see if you find what you're looking for.)

Based on the genre tags for the show, I'll take a stab at a few shows to recommend from my list. Haibane Renmei is a beautiful, peaceful, "slice-of-life" show in a somewhat supernatural world. The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya is excellent, frantic, impressively produced, slice-of-life, and takes place around a school club. Highly recommended. Escaflowne, though it has an epic story has elements from just about every type of genre, and also has a musical score from the greatest anime composer of all time: Yoko Kanno. (I'm just going by shows I've rated a 10, a.k.a. masterpiece, on my list, and there are not just a few of them.) Also, regardless of genre, please watch Cowboy Bebop. Everybody loves Bebop; it's probably the best gateway anime for anyone. It melds every facet of a show perfectly together, especially the unparalleled music (also composed by Yoko Kanno).

If you want more anime suggestions, just feel free to MeMail me, and I'll be more than happy to help. :)
posted by KinoAndHermes at 1:18 AM on October 8, 2013 [1 favorite]

Best answer: Haibane Renmei for sure.

Looking at the recomendations that KinoAndHermes linked:

Air is very much in the slightly supernatural no-idea-what's-going-on slice-of-life anime.

Toradora! has no supernatural elements, but was fun to watch. It remains one of the few animes with a female lead that is tsundere that I ended up liking.

True Tears no supernatural elements either, but a story that's deeper then it first appears.

haha Fruits Basket is on that list. It might skew just slightly too supernatural for you, but it's a wonderful comedy with serious stuff cleverly woven in.
posted by royalsong at 5:25 AM on October 8, 2013

Best answer: The Place Promised in our Early Days. And a big +1 for Haibane Renmei.
posted by jbickers at 5:31 AM on October 8, 2013

The "Da Capo" series is emphatically not what you are looking for. Stay away from them.
posted by Chocolate Pickle at 5:58 AM on October 8, 2013

Best answer: I haven't watched Clannad, and now it's on my list because it sounds right up my alley.

From your description of what you liked about it, I would also put in a strong recommendation for Haibane Renmei. It pegs the meter on quirky, sentimental, metaphysical, and stylized. The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya does too, but in a slightly more frenetic direction, while Haibane Renmei is more sweetly soothing. MyAnimeList mentions Air as an if-you-liked-Clannad-you-may-also-like, and I'd already been planning to watch it based on a recommendation, so that's another good place to start.

Some that haven't been mentioned yet:

Planetes is set in space but is emotionally of-this-world--it mostly focuses on some folks in charge of picking up space garbage. It starts pretty light and gains depth throughout the series.

Honey and Clover is a sweet little show about art students that has occasional stylized diversions into a student's creative process.

Bamboo Blade was a slice-of-life anime that I found unexpectedly charming. It's about a high school kendo club.
posted by tchemgrrl at 6:42 AM on October 8, 2013 [1 favorite]

Response by poster: Thanks everyone- great answers!
posted by drjimmy11 at 10:34 AM on October 8, 2013

I've not seen Clannad, but you might like 'Durarara!!' - it's quirky with lots of plot twists, and although it has fantasy elements (a headless Irish demon motorcycle courier, for instance) it's set in a realistic Tokyo.
posted by BinaryApe at 12:42 PM on October 8, 2013

Best answer: You may like Someday's Dreamers, even though it has magic in it. Magic is just an everyday thing, some people have the talent but most don't. It's not a solution to all problems, and often causes problems of it's own. The story is about a young girl training under a seasoned mage for a summer, and the relationships she forms with the people around her. She is nervous and uncertain about her future as a mage, and goes through a few struggles with accepting her talents. Most of the characters have hidden pain and longing, but those stories reveal slowly.
posted by rakaidan at 7:10 PM on October 8, 2013 [1 favorite]

« Older I want to trust the hospital, but I don't . . .   |   Help me find the name of this poem! Newer »
This thread is closed to new comments.