Monday, 17 December 2012

Space Brothers - Episode 37

It's been a little while in coming, but at last it's time for Mutta to receive his fateful phone call from JAXA in this week's Space Brothers.

Not that Mutta knows that his wait is almost over, as he continues to fret about the good luck he's burned over recent days and how that luck has suddenly taken a hefty turn for the worse at the least appropriate opportunity.  While he's worrying, we have time for a quick visit to the Moon, before getting to enjoy the unlikeable Mizoguchi get his comeuppance as (unsurprisingly) he learns that he hasn't made the cut.  He had a bottle of wine at the ready and everything, poor fella.

So, onwards to Mutta, and when his phone call does come around it's decidedly unorthodox - not only because of Mutta's greeting, but also because rather than being told the result over the phone he's invited to his local park to meet a JAXA representative.  Is it because they bring good news, or so that they can deliver a fatal blow to Mutta's dreams face to face?  Well, this isn't the last episode of the series, so....

It's really the moments when, and immediately following, the split-second where Mutta learns whether he's made the grade or not which utterly make this episode what it is - it's a beautifully raw bit of emotion that we get to share utterly, not only thanks to its portrayal here (although that is a big part of it) but also thanks to the journey we've followed him on up to this point.  Making a viewer cry tears of happiness isn't easy, but Space Brothers manages it admirably here, continuing its first-rate ability to get its portrayal of its characters nailed on and thus get under the viewer's skin with consummate ease.  With the press waiting to get a view of the second Nanba brother to be selected by JAXA as this episode ends, we know where things are headed next, but this seems like an opportunity for the series to reach even greater heights - and I don't just mean the Moon.

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