Cephiro

Character Discussion/Appreciation: Clef

Re: Character Discussion/Appreciation: Clef
« Reply #30 on: December 11, 2017, 03:37:42 AM »
*pause to stare and alternately sigh and wail at THAT MANGA PANEL shdasgdg it's only pretty much my favourite in ALL RAYEARTH*

I can understand people not liking him/his role, because he's very....... passive, in his action. And that concept of duty-right-or-wrong which he struggles with himself over is an older fashioned one, in many ways - particularly in anything created after WW1 - but that's one of the reasons his choices and his debate with himself hit SO HARD, because he DOES struggle with them. And the way he's been brought up/living within the system makes it such a huge thing that he would try to fight it, even from within - telling Emeraude not to summon the knights, planning to tell the next candidate the whole truth - but it's one which is overshadowed in some ways by the pov of the knights and the reader who are from OUTSIDE the system and can see 'make fundamental change' as an option. I mean, that's why he's there - and here I will SIDESTEP the essay about how the themes of change-from-outside and working-TOGETHER-with-others-from-outside instead of being-invaded-by-outside-forces when the old system is broken are resonant particularly in Japan which has had so many periods of closing-off-from-the-world-then-opening-up-again-for-various-reasons through her history, trying to find the balance between being her own country and being open to the rest of the world instead of dominated by it and losing her own identity but THAT IS AN ESSAY I WILL ONE DAY MAKE MY OWN VERSION OF AND CLEF WILL BE SO IMPORTANT IN IT - but he's here to SHOW that tension, that almost BLINDNESS which comes with growing up inside a system - hell, it's the same for any kind of privilege, and the privilege the Cephirans had in that system was HUGE. Endless peace and prosperity, defended by someone else!

and and and where the heck was I even going here THIS IS WHY I AM NOT ALLOWED TO GET STARTED ON CLEF. XDDD

I think... being sent to guide the people who are going to kill his leige is an awful, awful situation and it breaks my heart every time I reread that first bit, and then the thank you/apologies scene in Rayearth 2, because I honestly think he doesn't WANT to like these girls, doesn't actually want them to win - how can he? - but he knows their losing would be worse than anything else for Cephiro even if he hates it - and that accounts for how VERY VERY short his temper is then. He doesn't want to be charmed by Hikaru's idealism, and he certainly doesn't want to face Umi's blunt honesty (we're NOTHING TO DO WITH CEPHIRO'S PROBLEMS indeed) and yet he has to TEACH THEM MAGIC

which, even just for a moment, can't be anything but an intimacy between him and them, because magic comes from the heart, the soul.

I think he's so torn at that beginning bit because he really thinks he's sending them off to die, these children. Only then the reaction of magic to them (of CEPHIRO to them?) is so strong, and Hikaru's WILL and KINDNESS is so strong, wanting to stay and help him - that maybe he starts to believe that they can do something. That maybe Emeraude hasn't chosen the wrong people - and that leads to that smile when he sends them off, but it only lasts for a moment of relief before reality and the rest of the situation kicks in again, and he knows what their WINNING will mean.

His apology is sincere, because he could have done so much more - he could have gone with them. There was no reason not to go with them! He could have faced down any one of Zagato's minions! Though his getting involved in that conflict MIGHT have disturbed what peace Cephiro had left at that point..... But he doesn't want to help them! and that's why that apology and his reaction when Umi thanks him for Mokona WHO HE DIDN'T EVEN GIVE THEM but accepted from Emeraude and abandoned with Presea was so strong and BREAKS MY HEART (and why it makes SO MUCH SENSE that they turn him to stone in the anime, because as a metaphor it's pretty damn PERFECT especially with the term 'pillar' going about - CLEF YOU ARE MY FAVOURITE FLYING BUTTRESS~~~ - and it gives him the excuse he needs to not act, and hides what would be a very very obvious LACK of action spread across that many episodes...)

and I'm being ridiculous and headcanony all over the boards when I should be editing, heh, PLEASE EXCUSE ME I SHALL DEPART THIS THREAD. >.>

I have not so much to add, but this is so beautiful.
I love this series because every single character is so much more complex than what they appear to be at first instance.