Space Brothers (Uchuu Kyoudai) is adapted from a manga of the same name, with art and story by a fairly new manga-ka named Chuya Koyama. The director, Ayumu Watanabe, hasn’t done much directing and has worked mostly on shows like Doraemon. Knowing these facts, I had no idea what to expect. However, I was extremely surprised and pleased with what I got from the first episode.
Space Brothers follows Mutta and Hibito, two brothers, who make a promise to each other to one day become astronauts. Flash forward to the year 2025 and Hibito is set to be the first Japanese man on the moon along with a promising project to attempt colonization of it. Mutta, having long forgotten their promise, has just been fired from his job as a car designer for headbutting his supervisor. Mutta’s supervisor makes it impossible for him to get another job within the auto industry, so he is forced to stay at home with his mother and father. After a series of events, Mutta’s passion for space travel is re-ignited and he begins his battle to catch up with his younger brother and surpass him.
This show captured my attention almost instantly. Through a bit of creative writing and visual direction, the entire stage of the show is set. Mutta wishes to strive ahead of his brother, but he was born in less fortunate circumstances than him. Therefore, the tone of fighting against ones destiny is established. It speaks to Mutta’s character. He’s given ambitions and emotions that are easy for the viewer to understand and connect with. It will be interesting to see how the story unfolds around him, and viewers can certainly get enjoyment as they watch him strive to pass his younger brother and prove something to himself. Ultimately, the story has a very inspirational feel.
There aren’t too many other standout elements. The musical score fits the theme and mood perfectly, and it plays at the right moments to pull the right emotions. It’s kind of orchestral with a focus on the trumpets and flute, to give the impression of soaring during those certain occasions. The art and character designs aren’t much to bat an eye at, but they are interesting enough to look at. The animation is only okay. It passes for being a show without much intensive action, but it could be done better in certain places.
With its interesting characters and premise, Space Brothers is an anime I will definitely be following, and one you should be following too.