CLAMP is one of the most well-known manga artist groups out of Japan. They are the creators of one of the biggest magical girl series, Cardcaptor Sakura, as well as over 20 original anime and manga titles. While they didn’t animate or write all of the anime they’ve worked on, CLAMP has also provided character designs for equally popular shows such as Code Geass and Blood-C.
With over 30 years in the manga and anime business, CLAMP has covered many different genres, themes, and characters in their work. While some of their biggest titles will go down as anime classics, others are in desperate need of a reboot. With many other anime classics getting reboots, this is the perfect time for CLAMP to jump on the bandwagon and revisit some of their old series. Here are 5 classic CLAMP shows that still hold up and 5 more that deserve a reboot.
10 STILL HOLDS UP: Chobits
When it comes to mixing dark concepts with cute characters, CLAMP is unmatched. Chobits explores a world where computers or “persocoms” walk among humans, looking just like them only cuter. With human-looking computers, it is no surprise people in this world start falling in love with their persocoms. Chobits also explores some darker themes like the real-life repercussions of falling in love with a persocom, people who want to use them for evil, and the possibility of persocoms having free-will.
While the manga was released way back in 2000 and the anime adaptation came out shortly in 2002, the sci-fi and psychological concepts are all still relevant today. In addition to the themes, the anime is colorful and bright, contains classic anime visuals, and has a brilliant opening theme song.
9 NEEDS A REBOOT: Wish
A lot of older CLAMP works were never properly made into animes. Instead, they were included in CLAMP shorts as a bonus or they got an OVA at best. Wish, a classic CLAMP manga, was only ever adapted into a music video, which is a shame considering it is actually one of CLAMP’s most original stories.
Wish tells the story of a doctor, Shuichiro Kudo, who saves an angel, Kohaku. As a reward, Kohaku makes it her mission to grant a wish for Kudo, who insists he has no wishes. The story covers themes like Heaven, Hell, angels, and demons. Although it’s been 25 years since it first debuted, Wish is a refreshing story that would do well today.
8 STILL HOLDS UP: Kobato
While Kobato isn’t one of CLAMPs more well-known anime, it definitely should be. Even though it is technically not a magical girl anime, Hanato Kobato is adorable enough to be a magical girl if she wanted to. The anime follows Kobato as she is on a mission to heal suffering hearts.
The anime has fantasy elements like Ioryogi, a seemingly stuffed sidekick, and the “kompeito” Kobato is challenged to collect in order to grant a wish, it also has true to life themes. Ranging from love, friendships, tragedy, and family problems, Kobato covers it all.
7 NEEDS A REBOOT: RG Veda
Before they began giving all their characters happy endings, CLAMP started off with an affinity for tragedy. CLAMP made its professional manga debut with RG Veda. Taking place 3oo years in the past, RG Veda follows the story of Ashura, a prophesied God, and a Guardian Warrior, Yasha-O, who is tasked with helping Ashura fulfill a prophecy.
RG Veda was only adapted into two OVAs, which many fans disliked due to the changing of Ashura’s gender (who was genderless in the manga) and the altered story details. With an original fantasy storyline that would interest fans of Game of Thrones and The Witcher, RG Vega would be a hit if redone properly today.
6 STILL HOLDS UP: XXXHolic
Originally, xxxHolic was released in 2006 as a sister series to Tsubasa Reservoir Chronicles but it has since become the superior of the two. xxxHolic‘s anime was the perfect mix of supernatural elements with comedy. The anime follows Watanuki Kimihiro, a dorky high school student who is plagued by his ability to see spirits. One day, he meets the mysterious Yuuko and is tricked into working in her shop that grants wishes.
The anime and following OVA’s were a hit because they followed the manga pretty closely, while also expanding more on the story.
5 NEEDS A REBOOT: Tsubasa Reservoir Chronicle
Tsubasa Reservoir Chronicle started off as a very promising anime. Many long time CLAMP fans were excited to see their favorites Sakura and Syaoran from Cardcaptor Sakura in a new story alongside some new characters Fai D. Flowright and Kurogane. Tsubasa Reservoir Chronicle also brought in characters from Magic Knight Rayearth, RG Veda, Tokyo Babylon, and more.
The issues with Tsubasa Reservoir Chronicle stem from it straying away from the manga and giving the series a completely different ending. While the OVA’s attempted to rewrite the anime by following the manga, the damage was already done as many fans were disappointed. A fresh start from scratch would do this anime adaptation wonders.
4 STILL HOLDS UP: Magic Knight Rayearth
Before there was Sakura, there was Hikaru, Umi, and Fuu. Three girls are swept away into a mysterious land to live out their true calling: Magic Knights of Cephiro. The Magic Knight Rayearth anime had two seasons and ran from 1994 to 1995 with a total of 52 episodes.
Magic Knight Rayearth combines all the elements of a successful anime: school girls, a princess, fantasy lands, adorable sidekicks, and of course, a princess who needs help. The first season of the anime is the most faithful to the manga but overall, the entire series is still a fan favorite.
3 NEEDS A REBOOT: Tokyo Babylon
Before there was xxxHolic, the CLAMP supernatural and psychological title to go to was Tokyo Babylon. Set in Tokyo, the story follows twins Subaru and Hokuto Sumeragi and their friend Seishirou Sakurazaka. Subaru is an exorcist who finds himself being weighed down with how dark and cruel Tokyo can be.
The anime was only ever adapted into an OVA. Making matters worse was that it was a side story that does not even cover any of the manga’s stories. Since the story is continued in X, Toyko Babylon is deserving of a reboot to set the story right.
2 STILL HOLDS UP: Cardcaptor Sakura
What would CLAMP be without Cardcaptor Sakura? Not only is it CLAMP’s most well-known series, but it is also one of the most famous magical girl animes of all time. Cardcaptor Sakura follows Sakura Kinomoto’s journey in collecting the mysterious Clow Cards and eventually becoming the Master of the Clow.
Cardcaptor Sakura originally debuted in 1998 and 22 years later, its impact is still felt. It spanned 70 episodes and also had two feature films. Recently, the series was rebooted for a continuation of the original story in Cardcaptor Sakura: Clear Card.
1 NEEDS A REBOOT: X/ X1999
X was arguably the most promising CLAMP title and also the most controversial. The manga told the story of CLAMP’s most troubled character ever, Kamui Shiro. Kamui is destined to either save the world by joining the “Seven Seals” or destroy it with the “Seven Harbingers.” As Kamui makes a choice, his lifelong best friend Fuuma transforms and becomes his enemy.
X was adapted into both an anime, X/1999, and a movie of the same title. Since the manga’s production was halted due to controversy surrounding the “end of the world” storyline, both endings are not canon and left fans disappointed. If the manga is ever completed, a proper animated reboot is in order – complete with a revised ending.
CLAMP is one of anime's most well-known veteran studios but which of its beloved shows holds up and needs a reboot?