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Moe Check! ยป CCS Episode 13 – I Have The Power
This entry is part 13 of 20 in the series CCS Episode Summaries

Title Screenshot

The fourth DVD of Card Captor Sakura, entitled "Sakura Fight!" in what is possibly a clever way of referencing both the episode containing Sakura's and Kero's flare-up as well as a generic encouragement often heard in anime, contains the following text as a blurb:

Sakura challenges the Power Card to a game of tug-o-war, but thanks to Li, the game could be over in no time! Then, Sakura goes to see her brother in a peculiar version of Cinderella that is brought to a crashing halt by the Mist Card. What will Toya do? Next, after a fight with Sakura, Kero runs away and accidentally befriends a lonely child. Will Kero be able to see Sakura again if it means breaking a little girl's heart! Finally, Sakura's family takes a vacation where Sakura meets an old man in a mansion – who could he be?

I get the feeling that whomever comes up with these probably has nothing much to say about the episodes in question, and can see the looming future of so many DVDs to go and nothing to say about them too.

Extras outside the DVD would be one pencilboard, with rather nice pictures on both sides. One side has Sakura in her episode 2 battle costume framed by very large wings from the Sealing Wand (plus random glowies scattered around), and the other side has Sakura in her opening animation outfit posing against a backdrop which resembles a Clow Card. I might put the pictures up someday when I find them.

Extras in the DVD consists of an Art Gallery, with twenty-four line-art pictures and cleaned-up production sketches, a large number of which are basically Kero-chan in different poses. Standard "art gallery extra" stuff, essentially, and nothing particularly eye-catching, especially at the default resolution; one drawback of relatively older anime is that they don't really age well with regards to Bigger Better Screens and the ability to note every little pixel.

Anyway. Episode 13 is called "Sakura and the Elephant's Test of Strength", which I suppose technically counts as accurate if one kind of squints for a bit at the events in the episode. Sakura does have a test of strength, and an elephant does help out, and that's pretty much all one can say about it. I mean, it's just one elephant (well, technically two), not one thousand, much to Dibbler's disappointment.

Once again, the number of screenshots for this summary has been drastically reduced, or we'll be here all day staring at Tomoyo (Daidouji, I have to add, after the incalculable number of times I have to explain that I do not mean the CLANNAD Tomoyo of the Super Combo Hits). While I am perfectly content to while away the hours basking in Tomoyo's presence, I dare say that not everyone shares my view. (More's the pity.)

Therefore, every time Tomoyo appears onscreen, have another CHECK!Point. It's the right thing to do.

Screenshot 01

The day begins with the results of the night before, in a startling example of cause and effect: we saw an invisible force proceed towards the large penguin slide, and now we have a news report with said slide head down. I can only presume that the slide is made of material strong enough not to collapse under its own weight when its center of gravity is raised and the total mass focused onto a smaller area.

But that has little to do with Sakura's current state of mind, which is the sheer gut-bursting excitement of going on a class trip to the zoo. Remember that feeling? No? Then imagine that when you walk into work/school today, instead of the usual routine, you'll get to go on a tour of your favourite anime (or game) studio, as VIP guests. That sort of excitement.

Screenshot 02

CHECK!Point: On the way to school, Sakura runs into Yukito, who is all bishounen at her. Sakura reacts predictably.

Screenshot 03

The two of them pass by the news crew still on location at Penguin Park. This would imply that the report broadcast when Sakura was getting ready to leave was done Live, which is plausible, and that the reporter has managed to find plenty of things to say about this incident all the way until now, which begins to stretch the realm of believability. I suppose this counts as Amazing Occurences on a slow news day.

For some reason, the girl in the mid-background on the far right reminds me a lot of Naru Narusegawa from Love Hina. It's the hairstyle, I suppose.

Screenshot 04

CHECK!Point: Yukito bishounenly tosses Sakura a sweet. Sakura appreciates this greatly.

At the zoo, the class is split into various groups, presumably groups of five. I'm not sure if these groups were appointed or self-organized, but judging from how the five named girls in the class end up together (while Syaoran and Yamazaki end up with three other unnamed NPC guys), I'm guessing self-organized.

Random tangent: if CCS were a mecha anime, Sakura would obviously be the lead pilot, Tomoyo would be the trusted mechanic or a support pilot, while Chiharu, Rika, and Naoko would probably turn out to be the Bridge Bunnies, who do stuff like report on enemy movements or opening hailing frequencies or Pushing The Buttons. They just give that sort of Named NPC feel.

Tomoyo is handed the camera in recognition of her l33t Sakura-stalking photography skillz. The conversation turns to the Incident of the Inverted Penguin, and Naoko enthusiastically claims a supernatural cause. Sakura finds an excuse to run far, far away from her ghost-loving friend.

Screenshot 05

CHECK!Point: I think this is one of the very, very few times Tomoyo is seen to be visibly even remotely uncharitable towards any of her acquaintances. Instead of a serene smile unconcerned by Naoko's inability to grok that not everyone is a horror fan, she (and the others) just kind of grin nervously, thinking: "I'm not going to tell her. Are you?"

Sakura hears a muffled protest emanating from her backpack, and hurries off to check on a nagging suspicion.

Screenshot 06

No prizes. Really.

Kero-chan had apparently wafted in beside Sakura's lunchbox due to the delicious smells, thus raising an interesting question of logistics: Sakura received her lunchbox from her father just before leaving the house, and presumably put it in her backpack then. Being that Kero-chan would probably be inside Sakura's room on the second floor of the house, I wonder how he managed to set himself in Sakura's backpack without being seen.

Even if Sakura had brought backpack plus lunchbox up to her room prior to leaving, after what happened in episode 2 (when Kero-chan sneaked into Sakura's schoolbag), I'd imagine that Sakura would be a bit more vigilant against a repeat occurence.

A sudden crash and commotion rocks the zoo grounds. Chaos ensues.

Screenshot 07

Ladies and gentlemen, we have penguin sign. Well, live penguins, anyway.

I'm not entirely sure why commotions at the zoo immediately result in stampeding animals all over the place; surely some of the animals would rather hide in the safest place they know rather than run around in the open. Besides, I'm not sure what a penguin is doing running around on land in a panic.

Screenshot 08

The commotion turns out to be the invisible force from before, which smashes various walls for no reason other than being able to. It also lifts an elephant off the ground (presumably for the same reason, or lack thereof), and lets go. I'd like to see that trick tried with a whale, or at least a vase of petunias.

Sakura summons the Windy card to create a cushion of air. My physics isn't that great, so I'm assuming that this is plausible somehow, without turning to MAGIC.

The invisible force starts chasing Sakura down, and Sakura challenges it to the first thing which comes to her mind, being a tug-of-war.

Screenshot 09

The Power card appears. Clow Reed really, really likes the loli form.

Screenshot 10

The tug-of-war gets underway, with absolutely no explanation given as to how they found the rope, or why there does not seem to be anyone else around now that the commotion appears to have calmed down. Sakura also does the tug-of-war without gloves, which I've generally found to range from mildly to dangerously painful.

Surprisingly, Sakura gives a good accounting of herself. Keep in mind that the Power card has just lifted an elephant in the air without apparent difficulty, and now it appears to be exerting some amount of effort in a tug-of-war against a ten-year old girl.

There does not appear to be any mid-point marker to denote victory conditions. In fact, considering that the elephant suddenly joins in (instead of hiding like a sensible elephant), there don't appear to be any rules, either. The addition of the elephant in the equation means that the Power card has to strain a little more. Um, okay.

Screenshot 11

Syaoran, now at the scene, invokes the Time card, and stops time for everyone but himself. If you've been wondering where he was previously, Yamazaki had been spouting yet another whopper about sloths and their amazing turn of speed, and Syaoran had swallowed it whole. This will be mildly significant later.

Screenshot 12

CHECK!Point: Dammit, I will have my Tomoyo screenshots. Leave me this one vice.

Syaoran takes the rope out of the Power's hands with no apparent problems, yanno, undoing her grip, and tosses it aside. This raises yet more questions about exactly what is affected by the time stop and what is not.

He jumps back into the tree, and restarts time. Both contestants fall down, but Sakura is still holding the rope. This, apparently, means that she wins.

Screenshot 13

CHECK!Point: And so Sakura celebrates.

Screenshot 14

I'd just like to point out that the Power card has a much aggrieved expression here, as though she knows exactly why she lost, and is holding Sakura completely responsible for this travesty.

Perhaps it doesn't count as cheating if one doesn't lay out any rules.

Screenshot 15

The card goes to Sakura, despite Syaoran's help. Syaoran, for his part, is unconcerned with this turn of events, and instead wonders if the sloth his group was watching had started to zoom about yet. With that, he leaves.

That's right. Rather than challenge Sakura for the card, which is one of the cards he's in Japan in the first place for, he is decidedly more interested in speedy sloths.

I suppose he can get the card from Sakura anytime, while a speeding sloth is a once-in-a-lifetime experience.

Screenshot 16

CHECK!Point: Tomoyo requests a final picture of Sakura. I'm assuming that she'll keep that one, while the rest of the pictures will be used for the actual purposes of the zoo trip, ie the school report. I'm also assuming that she's going to develop the photographs independently, rather than possibly turning in the camera for batch development.

One wonders if the reports handed in will be more about the animals or the great big explosions all over the place. An educational experience either way, or something.

The next day (I think), Tomoyo is walking along with a photo in her hand, as Sakura catches up with her. Just as Yukito turns up to be bishounen at the two, a convenient gust of wind blows the photo right into Yukito's hand.

Yukito stares at the photo. Blinks.

"Sakura's very strong, isn't she?"

Screenshot 17

CHECK!Point: Tomoyo smiles that nervous smile as Sakura facefaults. "It's all special effects, special effects!"

Screenshot 18

Yeah, you had to have seen this coming. I do have to wonder how Sakura dealt with the bulk of the penguin slide, since I've found that the primary problem with handling large unwieldy objects is often that they were not meant to be handled like so, and thus have no convenient handholds. No, really; try taking a light and yet large object, turning it upside down while still handling it with care, and you'll see what I mean.

Also, I have to wonder why the penguin slide was not fixed prior to Sakura's capture and subsequent use of the Power card, or why Sakura is fixing the slide in broad daylight.

Some things will remain forever unexplained.

Screenshot 19

This episode's Kero-chan ni Omakase deals first with Tomoeda Elementary's summer uniform, and then their field trip backpacks. I must admit to a fondness for large roomy backpacks myself, since they have the obvious advantage of being able to store just about everything I'd need. Of course, I might not be able to actually lift the damned thing once I'm done packing, but that's another matter, conveniently solved by the very card captured in this episode. So there's one worry off Sakura's mind, in any case.

Series NavigationCCS Episode 12 – Pime TaradoxCCS Episode 14 – Shiku Shiku
3 Responses to “CCS Episode 13 – I Have The Power”
  1. Misha says:

    Even if the POWER card made her body impervious to being crushed, the weight of the penguin slide alone should've driven Sakura into the concrete like a railroad spike, assuming the laws of physics weren't in abeyance. Ah, well. MAGIC, and like that.

  2. DKellis says:

    I'm assuming that the penguin slide is made of plastic or something, and it's heavy (heavier than any one person to lift, certainly) but not pound-into-the-ground heavy. Otherwise, yeah, it's suspicious.

    I'm actually kind of curious about whether the penguin slide had… what are those things called? Rivets? Attaching it to the ground so it doesn't skitter all over the place when kids are especially rambunctious. Maybe the Power card can rip the slide off its moorings, but I don't think it can be fixed as easily.

  3. Lysander says:

    I'm not really sure about that "plastic" idea DK, since later in the series when Meilin is kicking and punching all of the chibi-penguin figures, they seem to be made of solid stone. Wouldn't they be made of the same material as the penguin slide? Just something that came to mind while I was thinking about it.

    And yeah, the bolts being pulled out of the ground would make it impossible to fix through pure strength, but then again this show wasn't really meant to be super-realistic. Sometimes I think "realism" and "made for adults" are synonymous, so I don't hold any of these little quirks against CCS anyways; they are amusing to point out though.

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