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Cardcaptor Sakura 14: Episode 40 (Sakura and the Sakura in the Dream)

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Episode 40 (Sakura and the Sakura in the Dream) is a "filler" (that is, original with the anime and not really advancing the overall story arc), but it's an extraordinarily effective one. A strong creative team made this possible:

Scriptwriter: Nanase Ohkawa
Episode Director: Shigehito Takayanagi
Animation Director: Atsushi Hasebe

Ohkawa-sama is, of course, familiar as the storyteller of the CLAMP team and the author of the original CCS scenario. Takayanagi is less familiar, but played a crucial role in the CCS anime, directing and storyboarding some of its most crucial episodes. Episode 40 was the first one he took on: subsequent assignments included Episode 46 (the “Final Judgment” that concluded the second season and the Clow Card story arc), Ep. 47 (the opening of the third season and introduction of Eriol as Sakura’s new adversary), Ep. 57 (the elevator episode, an especially cherished part of the anime for many fans), Ep. 64 (the ski lodge episode), and Ep. 68 (Sakura’s atmospheric trip back in time to meet Clow Reed). A veteran of Trigun and Flame of Recca, Takayanagi later did much work on Galaxy Angel before becoming senior director of the popular series The World God Only Knows (2010-11)

This was also the first of four CCS episodes for which Atsushi Hasebe did animation direction (the others were 46, 53, and 60). He too went on to an active career in this field, supervising the animation for, among others, Ouran High School Host Club (including the opening episode), Eureka Seven, Soul Eater, RahXephon, and Darker than Black.

It is not only a visually beautiful episode, with many memorable moments, but also one that (like others directed by Takayanagi) takes the characters on a trip deep inside themselves. All of them (even Meilin) get a glimpse of what's truly inside their hearts. Before, I'd put these in separate galleries, but getting a set of closely related sketch sets (includes some lovely roughs that are probably animation director Hasebe’s work) made me realize that they belong together in a corridor of their own.

CAUTION! SPOILERS! Be careful about reading the descriptions (which I've put all underneath the images) unless you've seen this classic episode.

 Sakura Out on the Town

 Photo Op

 Tomoyo's Dream

 Romantic Movie

 Syaoran's Dream Movie

 Tokyo Tower Touya: Rough

 Tokyo Tower Touya: Shuusei Genga

 Tokyo Tower Touya: Cel and Background

 Tokyo Tower Touya: Original background

 “Yo!” : Layouts

 “Yo!” : Rough genga

 “Yo!” : A1-A3 Shuusei gengas

 “Yo!” : A4 genga and Shuusei genga

 Hey, you guys…

 “This is a dream”: Layouts

 “This is a dream”: Gengas

 “This is a dream”: Shuuseis

 The Snack Bar Turns Surreal

 No Need to Cry

 Sakura Sees Her Future Self

Curator: 60something-sensei
Gallery Created: 8/3/2002
Hits: 262594

Presentation 8.82/10   Collection 9.47/10   Overall 9.03/10   Votes 84 votes
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