Monday, May 7, 2012

Space Brothers 4-5: Mutta goes to Houston

Mutta arrives in Houston, Texas and goes directly to NASA's Johnson Space Center. There, he is assaulted by a pug named Apo. Turns out the pug is owned by none other than Hibito, "Apo" being short for "Apollo." The two brothers waste no time trying to rekindle their bromance. There's obviously a lot of issues between them, not least of which is Mutta's feelings of insecurity. But Hibito seems determined to turn Mutta's insecurity into a healthy sense of competition, which Mutta is too dense to realize sooner, so the older brothers spends much of his time in NASA moping about the past he can't change while his younger brothers continues to train his eyes on the future. Meanwhile, back in Japan, there's a lot of haggling by the head honchos over the astronaut candidates. At least two are rooting for Mutta despite a real obstacle, namely the manager whom Mutta headbutted. Apparently, the manager has been telling lies to the JAXA bigwigs, which greatly affects Mutta's chances. But, for once, Mutta's past comes to his rescue as one of the JAXA executives seems to remember him as a young boy who used to frequently visit JAXA's headquarters.

It looks like this NASA arc is going to spread through several episodes. After all, this show is entitled Space Brothers so it's only obvious we're going to spend a lot of time on the bromance between Hibito and Mutta. But man, is Hibito popular or what? And I love Mutta's reaction to Hibito's popularity. Even the nickname "Samurai boy" cracks him up. A mixture of disdain and pride -- that is spot on. It's like you can't take it seriously because it's your brother and you know all sorts of things about him no one else does and yet you realize that it's a serious matter and you're like "this boy has really done something for himself." Add into that a little bit of jealousy and resentment for being more successful than you, and then the guilt as that same brother turns the table around and say that he admires you the most. Yes, I get what Mutta feels and I feel genuinely sorry for him when he finds out about his former manager. But it's gonna be okay because that dude has his back. 
Excellent episode, show.

more screencaps from episode 6: