Monday, 1 April 2013

Space Brothers - Episode 51

Nitta has recovered his phone but missed his all-important phone call as this week's Space Brothers begins - so what next for this rather different pair of space brothers?

Although the obvious answer to this seems to be "call Kazuya back", Nitta doesn't even really entertain this notion (surely it would have been worth a try), instead bemoaning the difference between his relationship with his brother and those of the Nanba siblings.  Of course, the external view of Hibito and Mutta as perfect brothers is far from true, as Mutta tries to explain, but Nitta is perhaps too caught up in his own perceived failings to really register this.

Meanwhile, Nitta might have missed the opportunity to talk to Kazuya directly, but he seems to have reckoned without his ability to talk to his brother indirectly via a video interview on the JAXA web site, which borrows some thoughts provided by Kazuya himself in his youth while also delivering a stirring speech on the importance of always moving forward.  Is it enough to bring Nitta's brother out of his slump?  Perhaps not in isolation, but it seems to be an important first step along his road to recovery.

Even in this arguably weak story arc, there's still something to be said about Space Brothers' delivery here - its willingness to eschew a "happily ever after" ending for something a little more realistic works in its stead, as does the subtlety of some of its emotional content.  That said, I'm looking forward to (hopefully) returning to some "proper" space-centric narrative again going forward, as ultimately that's what we're all here for each week.

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