Tomoyo After - Tomoya Arc

Discussion topic for the first arc of Tomoyo After: ~It’s a Wonderful Life~, focusing on Tomoya. Feel free to discuss anything from this arc without [spoiler] tags, but please tag anything from later arcs or from CLANNAD, providing adequate context in parenthesis.

This topic also played host to Tomoyo After Bookclub discussion from this post onward.

How would you rate this arc?

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Man this quarter has so many fun little minigames in it. So just for funsies, what results did you get for the “The Panda in the Forest” song?

What a brutal panda.

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More than anything, this arc just made me mad. The characters all ranged from slightly annoying to extremely boring. Kanako was a right bitch most of the time, but she was still the most interesting character to have around. Other than establishing everyone’s basic character, the main point of the arc was just Tomoya fighting a bunch of thugs. It’s just depressing and infuriating that meaningless violence is the way to progress. And to add insult to injury, after Tomoya has been “manly” for a million years, the writing essentially mocks him by having the whole incident be a misunderstanding. This is one of those times when I’m glad I knew late game spoilers because I would need something to trudge through this.


This one just cracked me up, for some reason. Thanks Kanako

Those are some really long lyrics


How do I know when this arc ends?

The story wraps up, and another one starts up. It’s a pretty clear when the Takafumi arc starts.

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To be precise, July 20th is where Tomoya arc has ended and Takafumi arc begins.


Thanks guys, I appreciate the help!

Okay I definitely disagree on this, because after reading it, it’s not clear at all. One might think that the first arc would end after Tomoya confronts Tomo’s mother and they agree to keep her (which obviously has nothing to do with Tomoya).

Okay so I finished the Tomoya Arc, and here are my thoughts!

-First off, I adore Takafumi despite the terrible fashion. He’s so goofy and sweet.
-I also really enjoy the interactions between him and Tomoya. It’s nice to see the “in-laws” getting along so well.

-I didn’t like the beginning. It seemed kinda pointless and exploitative. Like, hey, let’s see what costumes we can put Tomoyo in and embarrass her with. I get that they’re a couple and whatever and some of it was funny, but it mostly just felt awkward and uncomfortable to me. Had stuff like the “convenient” miso spill when she just bought a bikini.

-The sudden announcement of Tomo the illegitimate child was… well sudden. I feel it could have been brought up and discussed a bit more smoothly than it was.
-They’re acting very… immaturely for finding a young child. You don’t just decide willy nilly that “okay, we’re responsible for this small human now, that’s settled.” Not saying they’re doing a bad job, but there are steps to take and things to do before you take on that kind of responsibility. I think they’re starting to touch on that more and realizing that as things progress. I hope so, because a child is not a pet, which seemed to be how Tomoyo was acting at first.
-July 9th writing felt rushed.

-On a more personal note, my mother left me a few times growing up. Like she would just outright leave me with other people, sometimes strangers, so the Tomo thing hits me on a personal level. I really sympathize with the little girl and I very much like her, although I could stand to see more of her (which will probably come later).

-There have been a lot of funny moments, like the panda noise and just the general shenaniganing of Tomoya that I liked him for in CLANNAD.
-I don’t much like Kanako, she seems spoiled and forced. I’m hoping I’ll like her more as the story progresses and she develops.
-There’s just way too many people in that apartment now.
-I didn’t like the lying thing. While it was kind of funny, I didn’t like them having fun at Tomo’s expense like that because she’s a naive young child.
-Detective Tomo was hilarious.
-D&T is hilarious and pretty fun.
-The fight stuff seemed kinda… random?

So sorry that was long. Overall I am quite enjoying it and looking forward to seeing more soon!


I don’t remember this from the original. Anyone know if this was a replacement for the H-content?

Yeah all the 18+ stuff was replaced by Tomoyo being dressed up in different outfits.

It’s a bit different having Takafumi hide in the closet while Tomoyo is showing off a bikini instead of when the two are having sex.

Okay, first off, Takafumi bear is SCARY.

That thing is staring into my soul. I think I’m gonna have nightmares…

I have to admit, while I was expecting Tomoyo After to be enjoyable, I think I’m liking it a bit more than I thought I would.

Pros: I LOVE the group chemistry between Tomoyo, Tomoya, Tomo, Takafumi, and Kanako (One of these names is not like the other…). The banter is legitimately funny and well-timed, each character playing off the other very well. Since all of the characters are quirky, each member gets to play the silly one at different times and that makes the dynamic feel very natural. I can’t believe how much I was laughing during the scene where they try to see who Tomo trusts the most. It’s stuff like this that makes me love Maeda.

I also love how Tomoya has retained his wacky/straight man mix that made him such a fun character in Clannad. I’ll admit, he’s a LITTLE hornier than I would have liked (though, considering some of his behavior in Tomoyo’s route, I can semi-excuse it), but he’s as compelling as he’s ever been. Watching him grow stronger so that he felt like he could honestly protect Tomo and Tomoyo was touching AND well-handled. It helps that Yuichi Nakamura is just doing a GREAT job capturing Tomoya’s emotional journey here. I can’t wait to see more of what this VN has in store for him.

I’m also really liking this translation. I might go so far as saying it’s a little better than Clannad’s, with fewer typos and prose that flows more smoothly. So, props to Visual Arts U.S.A and Doki Fansubs. They did a great job.

Cons: Oddly enough, I feel like TOMOYO, of all people, isn’t always written that well. The first few days, where she’s trying on random outfits and fetishes for Tomoya was just cringe-worthy. I mean, if she had some sort of interest in doing this stuff, and she ends up just humoring Tomoya once she notices his reaction, that would fit her character. But instead, it feels like she just reluctantly obliges as Tomoya plays out portions of his perverted fantasies, and that just doesn’t fit her. Where was the more balanced chemistry from her route in Clannad? It makes her come off almost like a tsundere (ironic, considering she acts as one for Tomoya’s sake at one point), when she really wasn’t one in the original VN. She’s constantly getting overly emotional, yelling at both comedic and dramatic moments. Tomoyo in the VN was a BIT more level-headed and composed than this. That’s not to say her entire character is off. Her bond with Tomo is very natural and fits the character we saw in the VN quite well. And when she’s not lashing out in an over-the-top fashion, I like her chemistry with her brother. But still, being the title character, I wish she was written a bit more consistently.

Also, while I do like a LOT of the humor here, some of the cruder stuff was just kinda forced and squicky. Do we really need jokes about incest between Tomoyo and Takafumi, or Takafumi being a lolicon? I think it works much better when the humor is being quirky in a more spontaneous, random way than when it’s trying to be edgy.


After having read the whole VN, I think I’ll say that this is intentional. Tomoyo is depicted in this route as a very impulsive girl is is easily carried away by the circumstances of every moment. In fact, in CLANNAD itself it is easily perceivable that she is level headed and focused up until he starts hanging out with Tomoya, where she starts being more spontaneous and emotional. This might, however, be a bit shadowed by Sunohara’s presence during a large portion of her route.


I can see that, considering how after spending a lot of time with Tomoya, she starts prioritizing their relationship over her run for Student Council President. Still, I think it’s a little excessive, but… I’ll hold up hope for the latter parts of the VN.

Now that the bookclub has up and started, it’s time to get discussion rolling! I started reading this pretty close to the time it was released (instead of waiting for the bookclub to start) because reasons but because life kind of interrupted, I had to postpone my reading for 2 weeks or so. That being said, I finished the “Tomoya Arc” a few months ago, so let’s hope my memories still remain fresh for this discussion.

The Characters

The main cast is built up of the 5 that spend their time in Tomoya’s apartment. I notice a lot of people are discussing and comparing their personalities so I thought I’d just give my own two cents on them.

I feel like Tomoya is a pretty believable personality continuing on from Tomoyo’s route in Clannad. While the Tomoya in other routes in Clannad is totally different, I can believe his personality here being hardworking, trying his utmost to make himself better for his own and Tomoyo’s sake, plus being a bit of a pervert.

Tomoyo, I think, got the best treatment in terms of characterization. Her flaws are made bare in this VN, and these flaws (her being headstrong and pushy) are put into much more emphasis in the VN. She no longer feels like a character that everyone in the story would blindly support, and the addition of Tomoya, Takafumi and Kanako, who all go against her at one point or another, makes her feel more human.

Takafumi is a pretty cool character and very level-headed albeit pretty stubborn. His character, by itself, is not interesting, but I like him either way. Always nice to see a straight man in these stories.

Kanako is just hilarious. She’s like Haruka (same VA, too!) but with a lot more crude jokes and pranks. Despite all this, she has this innocence to her that makes you realize that none of her jokes are really meant in offense; she just has a weird way of thinking. And I think that’s fun to see.

Tomo is just precious. Not only does she have the innocence becoming of a toddler, but she is also pushy about this innocence, and while it adds in to the humor at times, it also offers perspective to the adult characters, who have gotten more cynical over the years.

The Story

Arguably, the story really only starts after the opening sequence. The whole costume perversion thing is something that can be ignored and skipped (just as much as the continuous H-scenes in its original version could) without losing any bearing on the story. Can’t say I wasn’t entertained by it, though!

Tomo arrives and it hits a pretty dark spot real fast. Yes, Tomoyo’s father has an illegitimate child. Not only is it something heavy, its also believable. Tomoyo deciding to raise her like that, despite Tomoya being more objectionable (trying to find her mother and everything) shows absolutely everything about their personalities well enough. Tomoya even knows that Tomoyo may not be able to control herself once confronted with Tomo’s mother, as is shown by the choice in the middle of this arc.

We then go into meeting Kanako, more hilarity ensues, and then Tomoya finds out some thugs are out to get Tomoyo and takes it upon himself to beat the shit out of them. With the help of Kanako, he succeeds. The message of this arc is pretty clear-cut; Tomoya needs to improve himself to make himself a man worthy of loving Tomoyo. Regardless of whether he is that kind of person at the beginning, he does it through not only perseverance, but through appreciating his connections with other people (namely, Kanako and Takafumi). The story tells us that we should never take the easy but wrong way out, because we will fail to learn from this experience. However, we should not be afraid of humbling ourselves and asking for help from those willing to do so.

However, I feel that the story does not make this believable enough. Tomoya beats a bunch of thugs, day after day, then suddenly, after beating some crazy dude, they decide that it is enough. Yes, he is rewarded for his hardwork, but I honestly feel like this reward is not quite believable. Thus the impact of the message somewhat cheapens. Yes, if we work hard enough, good things will happen. But that being in the form of our adversaries simply just getting tired and giving up seems too hard a pill for me to swallow.

That being said, I gave this arc a 3/5. As much as I enjoyed the introduction of the characters and the “common” route, the crux of the arc had enough flaws for me to not consider it up to par. At the least, it set up some really really good themes that I personally thought are brought up again later in the story.


Great write-up, Pepe!

I agree with you, and Helios Alpha that the ending was poorly executed. From a characterization perspective, it is important for Tomoya to grow and prove himself in this manner but revealing that there was no real danger, and it was essentially all in his head was kind of a cop-out. However, I believe these sections partly redeemed themselves with some quality writing between Tomoya and Kanako (though, yeah, it may have been a tad bit rushed), and some well-written fight scenes. The sound-effects, narration, and music really worked together to make those scenes intense. For a second near the end, I legitimately thought I’d accidentally stumbled upon a bad end.

I can understand your viewpoint on Tomoyo, but I still believe they overdo her emotional side a bit. Having her comically yell at people who bug her in different ways was just too much for me. In more dramatic moments, they do balance this out by having her show equal parts emotion and rationality when she’s looking for Tomo when she gets lost in one scene, but I will concede her weakest moments were definitely in that prologue sequence.

To ask a really silly question, is the Seiyuu playing Tomoyo different here than in Clannad? Because if she isn’t, I give her points for sounding quite similar to the original…

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I didn’t say jack shit about execution: I hate the basic premise of Tomoya having to beat people up to “be a man.” I’m in favor of the ending because it supports my opinions.

In the anime it’s Kuwashima Houko; in TA it’s Tanaka Ryouko. However, TA came out 2 years before the anime, so Tanaka is the original.

My apologies for misunderstanding you. I didn’t mean to be presumptuous. While I’ll concede that thematically, it renders his actions pointless, contextually, I believe Tomoya’s actions were reasonable. Considering how many thugs he was dealing with, Tomo would legitimately in danger (though, it wouldn’t be incorrect to say that Tomoya’s primary motivation was to prove himself).

As for Tomoyo’s voice actress, good to know. I hadn’t actually thought of it that way, so… Yeah, you’d be right. :stuck_out_tongue: