No relation to a certain redheaded girl from another popular anime series.
Also, we've got a different background this time due to the odd Anachronic Order
of the North American airings.
Sakura and Madison have arrived at the Reedington High Culture Festival, with Madison bringing her ever-trusty video camera just in case a Clow Card shows up, but getting Sakura is just as good. Tori is stitching up a dress for the play coming up as a redheaded girl (well, what do you know?) looks at him fondly from behind a door. Sakura sees Julian in a kimono operating the Japanese food booth, where they order soda. Gotta love Americanization of food culture, and I mean that in more ways than one. Sakura's Clow senses are tingling, introducing Li and some crazy gymnastics just so he can pout at Sakura. At least Julian is there to lighten the mood of their rivalry and show them around. Tori and the rest of the cast are shown preparing backstage.
Sakura sees a stuffed rabbit she likes, with Li, perhaps hinting at Kero, informing her that she already has one at home. Of course, it's a carnival game, which means she'll have to pay up a quarter to win it from 5 buff basketball players. However, the scrawny Julian takes up the challenge and wins handily with great agility. He gives the rabbit to Sakura, but he sticks around to win one for Madison and Li, with his resembling Kero incidentally. The team is impressed and tired, trying to convince Julian to join their team, but he merely says "I'll think about it." Julian later tells the kids it's time for their play, chuckling about Tori's part and saying it's a performance they'll never forget. Some green stuff swirls around outside the stage building ominously, because an episode just isn't an episode without the tiny zip of Clow Card.
Piano music finishes up as the intercom announces the play: Cinderella. Li suggests Tori would be playing the part of one of the rats, but as it turns out, the titular character cries on the floor rather man-like. Introduce Bishie Sparkle
as Tori turns his face to the audience. The wicked stepmothers and stepsisters are also played by tall male adolescents (classic theatrical tradition, I guess), and as Sakura's recorder music plays in the background, she blushes in embarassment. The characters in crazy makeup prance around in effeminate tone while Tori unenthusiastically acts out his part. Li points out his Bad Bad Acting
as Sakura hangs her head in shame and outside, the ectoplasm surrounds the building and enters through the window.
The redheaded girl Vicky plays the part of the prince but loses her cool when Tori shows up in drag, enraptured by the opportunity to dance with the ever handsome young man. As they stand at the balcony, the ectoplasm decides to make an unwelcome visit and cracks it apart, leaving Tori and Vicky at its mercy. It also drops the curtain down. La Commedia è finita
. Not for Sakura and Li. They head backstage to ward off the card. Sakura phones up Kero, who was just watching a sad romantic movie, and he identifies it as The Mist◊
card, which destroys things with its fog. He tells the two that they have to round it up somehow. They don't have much time, though, as Tori hangs on to Vicky for dear life and even Julian can't do anything to save them. Nonetheless, Sakura saves the day by employing Shadow to do the job and Li saves the falling actors from the crumbling balcony with his Element: Wind spell. That's one of the shortest captures ever.
That evening, the announcer prepares everyone for the bonfire dance. Madison laments that her film ran out, but is glad everything turned out okay for everyone. Yeah, okay, aside from the fact that the school would be in hot water for compromised safety. Sakura thanks Li for helping her out, but he just blushes and then denies it with arms crossed. Vicky and Tori have an awkward moment by the waterside as she asks him for a dance by the bonfire. "Dancing" of course means the characters simply rock back and forth in embrace. Tori decides to leave to talk to his sister as Vicky sadly stands there, saying she'll wait for him. Too bad girl, he's not interested. Tori is mad at Julian for letting slip that he was Cinderella, but Julian doesn't give him much in the way of conversation as he invites Sakura to join in the minimal animation ritual as a jealous Li looks on.