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Card Captor Sakura: Clear Card has started streaming on CrunchyRoll, and it hits all of the nostalgia buttons you could ask for: the show is very pretty, Kero-chan is annoying, Tomoyo-chan is still evil[1], Sakura and Syoaran are still adorable together, etc, etc.

But what it isn’t is a new story.

Once again the cards have been scattered[2] or disabled[3], Sakura’s old wand/incantations won’t work anymore and she has new ones[4] with which to recapture[5]/restore[6] the cards.

BTW The Windy card[7] is now the Gale card. At least the card names are in kanji this time. I suppose that’s new.

The thing is there’s so much more that could have been done with a new season of Card Captor Sakura. If you still want to keep the card theme then run a plot with Sakura growing into her powers enough to create new cards in response to new challenges.

If you want to hammer the friendship theme (and, hey, it’s Card Captor Sakura so why wouldn’t you?), Sakura has always seen the cards as her friends rather than servants. So set up a quest where she can release the cards into incarnate forms and actually have them be her friends. Have the clear cards remain as her mementos or something.

I’m sure that there were other options to do something fresh with Card Captor Sakura.

As it is I’m wondering if the Law of Diminishing Returns will eventually overwhelm the nostalgia that the show was generating in the first episode. And to be clear, Card Captor Sakura: Clear Card is very good at hitting those nostalgia buttons.

So for the most part I’ll probably I’ll enjoy Clear Card on that level. There’s just going to be that lingering sense of disappointment that CLAMP didn’t do something a little more creative with it.

Here’s the OP which, while pretty, just reinforces the nostalgia theme from the initial moments of the animation to having Maaya Sakamoto[8] singing it:

[1] Adorable. But evil.

[2] Season 1

[3] Season 2

[4] Season 2

[5] Season 1

[6] Season 2

[7] The first card in Season 1

[8] She did one of the better Season 2 openings. Platinum IIRC.