THE BLACK MOON
ART, ANIME, AND JAPANESE CULTURE
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Card Captor
Sakura-chan
Card Captor Logo
Written by Jeaninne Thorpe Copyright 2001.
Editor's Note: The following essay was written several years ago, when the dubbed and edited version of "Cardcaptors" first began airing on American television. The essay was written in an angry and hostile tone, that reflected my extreme displeasure and frustration at seeing a beloved show, twisted and contorted into something it wasn't. Since that time, it is our opinion that the ladies of CLAMP have shown even more disregard for their fans... with recent series like Angelic Layer and Chobits really deteriorating our opinion of them. But for history's sake, we wanted to leave up this essay as it was - as a sign of more innocent times, and a record of the passion that good art can leave on a receptive audience. The postitive news is, since this essay was written, the original Japanese series of Card Captor Sakura is now available on unedited subtitled DVDs... so now everyone can enjoy the series as it was meant to be seen!

Perhaps you, beloved reader, are aware that "Cardcaptors" now airs on North American television. Here in the U.S., it is shown on the Kids WB network. Whatever your experience or opinion of the show, we here at the BLACK MOON feel we must come forward to tell you..... that what is being broadcast is not the REAL Card Captor! "Cardcaptors", like "Pokemon", was not made by Kids WB. It was not even made in the USA. Rather, it is a product of Japan, and thus deserves the name 'anime'.

The "Cardcaptors" shown on North American television bares little resemblance to the original program... Card Captor Sakura. The Japanese series is a girls' manga and anime series produced by the Japanese all female manga artist team CLAMP. It began it's run in the monthly girls' comic Nakayoshi in 1997, just as Sailormoon was nearing its finale in that same magazine. Sailormoon fans like ourselves knew of Card Captor Sakura because of this connection, and were elated to hear that it would be made into an anime in 1998. In fact, we know it so well, we usually abbreviate the title to "CCS".

Sakura and her Mother CLAMP is no stranger to success. The quality of CLAMP's art and stories is always superb, and most anime lovers would recognize the characteristic, large, dark, "CLAMP eyes" which all their characters possess. The group, which began their career in doujinshi (fan created comics), have made many popular manga and anime series.... from cute shoujo (girls') series like Magic Knight Rayearth and CLAMP Campus Detectives... to darker tales like X or RG Veda.

The X movie even had a limited run in American theatres this year. But CCS may be CLAMP's most popular series yet, with two full length films to its credit, one debuting summer 1999 and another released in Japan, July 2000! Thus, we here at the BLACK MOON have great admiration for CLAMP, and the delight that is Card Captor Sakura has only increased this respect. CCS made its debut in Japan on April 7, 1998, and we were lucky enough to receive fansub copies of its first 4 episodes within only a few months.

Kero-chan CHECK!

We fell instandly in love with it then, and this love had only increased in the past two years, as we saw more episodes, got ahold of the wonderful soundtracks, and above all just admired the quality of the work, which is excellently animated even by current Japanese anime standards.

That all being said, we are disappointed in the translation, dubbing, pronunciation, and editing of the show by Nelvana and the WB network, as they have presented it to the North American audience. The edits, computer graphic additions, and music changes, we feel have decreased the overall aesthetic value of the series. But perhaps worse, is that the editing and rewriting of the script have changed the entire flavor of the program, and are not true to the artistic vision of CLAMP.

For these reasons, we have decided to give homage to the original series by presenting these images and providing an overview for those readers who are unfamiliar with the original Japanese series (all names are written Japanese style, with family name first). Kinomoto Sakura (sah-koo-rah with even accent), is a ten year old Japanese girl in the fourth grade. Sakura means cherry blossom in Japanese, and the image of cherry blossoms is a pervasive one in anime, particularly in this series.

My name is NOT Madison!!!
Thus the show's title, Card Captor Sakura (Kaado Kyaputa Sakura), reflects Sakura as being the protagonist of the show. She lives in Tokyo with her archaeology professor father and older brother Touya... her beautiful mother Nadeshiko died when she was only three. Other important people in her life include her best friend Daidouji Tomoyo (pictured directly above) with her sweet angelic voice, and Touya's best friend Tsukishiro Yukito (age 16), whom Sakura secretly has a huge crush on!
MORE ON SAKURA
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