This side story evokes the exact same feelings CLANNAD’s common route had: it felt peaceful, but still packed with stupid situations and, best of all, Sunohara.
While this specific story didn’t achieve anything new, and wasn’t outstanding either, I can see how many of us may like it as a nostalgic story, since pretty much all of the characters appear and the brief story condenses both the happy, peaceful moments; the hectic, funny ones, and the worrying, dramatic ones. You could even say that this episode is something like “CLANNAD in a nutshell”, so despite how plain it was and how there wasn’t much originality, I can’t bring myself to hate this episode. This is why I gave it a 3.
Some issues I saw were, apart from the lack of originality, the fact that the drama part with Akio in his last days was pretty much too forced and its ending was too obvious. However, one could argue that this was to create some comedy, but in my opinion, if this was the case, this idea is pretty poor in comedy value.
Also, the ending to the episode is a bit too sudden (if you don’t consider the fact that the next episode follows this one right away). And, despite this not being purely a drawback, I still missed a bit of the good old baseball matches we can find in KEY’s works.
While you might think that I have a pretty negative opinion about this side story, The reunion of the Furukawa bakers surely had some hilarious gags like Fuko’s summoning, the a cappella singing of “YO-SHI-NO!” and even a mention to our beloved Saitou (presumably, Jet Saitou). While not very ambitious, this story sure made me grin a couple times, and this is something I won’t deny.