Thursday, April 26, 2012

Preview: Space Brothers

Space Brothers shows two brothers, Mutta and Hibito Nanba. During a nocturnal expedition to the local woods, they see an UFO going towards the moon and decide to become astronauts when they grow up. The show skips to 2025 and shows Hibito in a press conference with other astronauts that are going to the moon. Meanwhile, Mutta, who worked as a car designer loses his job. When Hibito learns that, he calls Mutta and makes him remember his childhood dream, which makes Mutta try to become an astronaut.

This plot isn't original. Two guys that share a childhood dream. One manages to accomplish it while the other abandons it. For some reason the one that abandoned the dream decides to try again. In fact, this is a pretty common plot in shounen sports anime.

What makes Space Brothers different is using this plot to show an adult protagonist with adult problems going after his dreams in a very funny way. The message that it's never late to go after your dreams might be a little cliche in movies, but that's not the case when we're talking about anime. The whole space program setting also makes it different and more interesting.

Mutta is a very goofy and clumsy 31 year-old guy. He's responsible for most of the series' humor. And he has an afro. But he's also a capable engineer going after his dreams. It's always good to see a protagonist that isn't a rebel or antisocial teenager. Hibito didn't have much space until now, and the only two noteworthy  characters areKenji Makabe, an applicant in the astronaut programme who is the same age as Mutta and becomes his friend, and Serika Itou, a beautiful doctor and applicant in the programme. Mutta has a crush on her.

If the series goes on like this, it'll probably be one of the best of the season.

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