While Mutta finally takes the chance to look around the space centre, back in Japan things aren’t boding well for him as how he headbutted his old boss once more comes back to haunt him.
Not dead yet. Even if this is over a week behind now.
After taking a look around the displays Mutta and one of Hibito’s friends, Jennifer head outside to where Hibito and his fellow astronauts are training, Mutta being able to time him without a watch and unable to get over how his little brother is nicknamed Samurai Boy. With the reasons for all this training being revealed shortly afterward, that he’ll have to exercise much more to stay in shape as well as the importance towards keeping track of time.
At the end of the day Mutta also learns that a night show will be hosting Samurai Boy, the way he holds himself leading to him seeing some truth his nickname, however right when he least expects it Hibito mentions that his brother is also training to be an astronaut. Hitting him off guard since he isn’t even sure if he’s passed yet, and alongside this he learns just what’s happening in Japan. However it seems that this might not be the end of him at all, as the man who took notice of him in the interview, Hoshika happens to be looking back on the matter, also revealing what he remembers about two boys who visited JAXA as many times as they could, and as it would so happen Mutta remembers him as well. And clouded in doubt he laments his position.
Back in Japan at this point though, Hoshika has met some of Mutta’s old co-workers to gather evidence on the headbutting incident and has found that he was actually kind of justified in it, again looking back to how Mutta came to JAXA one day with a bandage on his forehead and how Hibito explained that while he could have handled it himself, Mutta chose to step in when some kids were bullying him. It’s because of all this that he believes that Mutta will make a great astronaut as he expresses what he truly felt when after watching the younger brother become an astronaut, the elder brother finally showed up as well.
In the next episode Hibito finds that even though his brother is well over thirty he still hasn’t changed that much, still being the type to watch the news, listen to the radio, and read the newspaper all at the same time over breakfast without missing a thing. With one particular thing that he picks up on being a mysterious robber who sprays his victims with a fire extinguisher. Following this things shift back to the space centre where Hibito is undergoing training in the event of him losing his sight, Jennifer explaining that the dust on the moon is incredibly sharp, and given the chance of it getting caught on their spacesuit and brought inside, there’s a risk of it blinding them or tearing up their lungs. Bringing up the case of Harrison Schmitt who appeared to suffer from an allergic reaction but was later found to have damaged eyes and lungs.
Back in Japan at this point Hoshika has presented his evidence that Mutta’s headbutting incident doesn’t make him a violent person, however his co-worker still refuses to accept it as the fact of the matter was that he used violence. In Texas Hibito and Mutta have arrived home and the latter reveals the doubts that he has about passing the exam, that he’s never been the lucky type thanks to the Agony of Doha and it would be best for him just to get another job and move on, Hibito however meets this with a certain stubbornness, proclaiming that if you don’t have what it takes to carry through it doesn’t count as a dream. And to this Mutta feels a certain sense of failure as an older brother.
However when he wakes up the next morning he runs into the Smiths again who take him to a diner and he tells him about what Hibito is doing now, doing it himself by covering his eyes and describing every little detail about the other customers, from what they’re wearing to what they’ve ordered. Before things can go any further though a haze fills the diner meaning one thing, the fire extinguisher robber. In Japan, Hoshika pushes for a computer to compare Mutta’s results with the opposing examinee when Mutta appears on the news.
I kind of got a bit behind with this but here it is now, as with the past ones these two episodes were consistently good. In the first we got some rather nice development for the guy who set up the loose screw test, Hoshika, and in the second we were able to see one of Mutta’s strengths, and throughout both his growing sense of doubt.
First things first, Hoshika’s story was a rather nice one, it probably wasn’t entirely necessary but even so that fact still remains. It turns the guy who set up a small extra test that he too had been given and that wanted to see those who passed it move on, into someone else entirely. Better painting his reasons for wanting to see Mutta succeed in that he had seen him grow up at JAXA and had been waiting for him to show up all along, which in turn better explains why he had taken an interest in him. The reasons he wants him to pass aren’t about winning a bet he set up but instead for personal ones, he legitimately wants Mutta to succeed, and so for a story on the side I thought that this was an incredibly nice one, working to develop Hoshika’s character better as well.
Moving on from that Mutta’s feelings of doubt across these two episodes was rather nice as well, a little drawn out but still nice all the same. He knows things aren’t looking good for him but at the same time he can’t exactly let any of this slip to his brother who’s so convinced that he’ll pass that he bragged about him on tv, well not necessarily but things really do seem pretty hard for him at this point, especially with his current defeatist mindset. That said it was great to see Hibito call him out on this, it’s pretty stupid to let something unfortunate that just so happened to occur around the time you were born push you down, especially for someone as ready to give up as Mutta, and alongside it Hibito does have a strong point as well. If this really was his dream he wouldn’t be giving up so easily, so with this hopefully we’ll see him get back on his feet.
Finally it was also great to see the second episode show off one of Mutta’s strengths in comparison to Hibito, who compared to his brother was having quite a lot of trouble with it, what could be considered a mental strength needed. While Hibito excelled at everything else he was shown having difficulty with the blindfold test, however in comparison Mutta was shown to be capable of memorising and multi-tasking with ease. For what it is it’s simply a nice way of balancing them out a bit, as well as showing that Mutta isn’t really as bad as he thinks he is and if anything has some valuable skills needed as an astronaut, and with the way the episode ended it’s going to be fun to see him put them to use.