OP Sequence

OP: 「Feel So Moon」 by ユニコーン (Unicorn)

Watch the OP!: Streaming ▼

「弟ヒビトと兄ムッタ」 (Otouto Hibito to Ani Mutta)
“Little Brother Hibito and Big Brother Mutta”

I’m positive it’s safe to say that everyone, at some point in time, dreams of going into outer space. There’s something magnificent and romantic about the idea of leaving our small spot in the universe and venturing out into the unknown – an innate desire to explore beyond the bounds of what’s already known. Uchuu Kyoudai, written by Koyama Chuuya and adapted by A-1 Pictures, tells a story along these lines: a story of two brothers and their dreams of outer space.

To quickly summarise the episode, two brothers head out one night to record the sounds of nocturnal creatures as the rest of Japan watches Zinedine Zidane’s legendary headbutt (lovingly recreated in anime form). During this excursion, they witness the mysterious floating object which sparks their dreams of becoming astronauts. Jumping ahead 19 years, we return as Namba Hibito (Kenn) speaks at a press conference regarding his upcoming journey to the moon (as the first Japanese man or woman to set foot on the moon no less), but saddened that a certain other would not be making the journey before him. Meanwhile, the elder of the two brothers, one Namba Mutta (Hirata Hiroaki), has just lost his job as an automobile designer (headbutting your boss is a bad idea, seriously) and moves back in with their parents.

Time passes and Mutta begins to notice that he’s being subtly phased out by his parents in an attempt to convince him to get a job. Once he declares his intentions to do so, he gets strawberries. Unfortunately, the termination of his previous employment proves detrimental to getting a new job in the automobile industry and he finds himself sitting in MoDonald’s, reminiscing about the promise he and his brother made 19 years previously. A little push from Hibito and Mutta listens to the tapes from that night, and hears the words, spoken so long ago, that spurred their dreams; Hibito would become an astronaut and travel to the moon, Mutta would stay one step ahead and aim for Mars.

One month later, all Mutta can think about is getting home to continue reading books about space. But having quit yet another job, he’s on the verge of giving up on his dreams as a failure. Arriving home, he finds a package which informs him that his application for the New Astronaut Selection Exam, secretly sent in by his mother, has been accepted.


“A big brother should always stay ahead of his little brother.”

Everything seems to come back to this line and I have a strong feeling it will remain an important theme throughout the anime. The idea that the elder of two brothers should remain ahead of the younger has always had great appeal to me. While I can imagine it might not be quite so pleasing to the younger sibling, nor always hold true, I’ve always felt that our primary job as elder siblings is to stand ahead and be someone dependable to look up to or turn to for help. Unfortunately, at this point in time, Mutta has fallen a step behind his younger brother, but I have faith that we’ll see him catch up, and possibly even take that step ahead over coming episodes.

It may be fairly early to be wondering this, but I can’t help speculating over what might have caused Mutta to lose sight of his dream. His success as an automobile designer (and the awards his designs received) seems to belie the idea that it could be due to having failed the required examinations. In fact, if anything, his employment suggests a high intellect which could be well suited for the job (I can’t speak for the state of his physical fitness though)! I can only assume that there were other factors which gradually pushed him away from their shared dream and hope to learn more as the anime progresses.

Of course, we also have the grand mystery that sparked it all – the strange UFO which headed for the moon and the unusual static it left behind on the tapes. Was it actually an alien spaceship? An experimental government probe? Possibly even a strange natural phenomenon? It’s much too early in the anime to make any judgements, but the part of me that loves sci-fi is hoping for the former of the three. Regardless, aliens or no aliens, as first episodes go, this manages to be an extremely varied and entertaining watch. Should the series continue with this level of quality, I’m fairly sure it will quickly become one of my favourites.

Music (and sound in general) is handled extremely well throughout the episode. It amazes me how the episode manages to move from being comedic, to slightly depressing, to touching, all without missing a beat or feeling spliced together. Certain scenes had me in tears of laughter, while others had me on the verge of a completely different kind of tears. Music and sound helps a lot on this front; the well placed comical effects during the more humorous scenes and the variety of touching music which plays during both the more depressing scenes, and those that are more emotionally elated. While I’d love to credit this entirely to the music, the directing and the writing itself contribute immensely. Only one episode in and already one line of dialogue has stuck with me while multiple others have managed to bring emotions to the surface. I literally cannot wait for the next episode!

I’m sure I don’t need to remind anyone to try and avoid manga spoilers as much as possible. If you really must include them, please make use of the spoiler tags. Thanks!


ED Sequence

ED: 「素晴らしき世界」 (Subarashiki Sekai) by Rake

Watch the ED!: Streaming ▼




    1. He headbutts when he wants, he headbutts when he wants. Zinedine Zidane, he headbutts when he wants.

      Eventhough he was born at the ‘Agony of Doha’, I hope Namba Mutta becomes a successful person.

  1. I really enjoyed this episode.

    “While I’d love to credit this entirely to the music, the directing and the writing itself contribute immensely. Only one episode in and already one line of dialogue has stuck with me while multiple others have managed to bring emotions to the surface. I literally cannot wait for the next episode!” I agree 100% with this, too.

    1. I seriously did not know what to expect with this. Space brothers? What the heck can you do with that idea? Well, as Nyara says so simply and so well… “I really enjoyed this episode.”. With some anime it takes me a while to warm up to it. This one hooked me from the start. The OP was executed perfectly. The music was just spot on.

      Like Ano Natsu I’m glad I gave this a chance- and I can’t wait to see where this goes.

  2. Pacing was kinda off in parts, but overall it was pretty decent. Never read the manga, so not sure what route this one’s gonna take. Hopefully not the route of constant struggle and heartbreak for the protagonist. If I wanted that I could just watch the news on TV.

    Expecting another Planetes would be asking way too much, but I’m (cautiously) looking forward to the next ep, for sure.

    1. I’m also hoping the series won’t take a route purely consisting of struggle and melodrama. However, while there were some darker tones in the episode, the overall feel I get edges towards something more hopeful. There probably will be some low points, but the impression I get from Mutta’s personality is that he won’t give up and will eventually achieve his goals. To me the focus seems to be more on the touching brotherhood and family moments than on the depressing scenes.

      Right now though, it’s anybody’s guess what sort of direction we’re headed in (except those who have read the manga).

    2. Actually Planetes’ major flaw was its inconsistent tone: the first half was both comedic and serious, whereas comedy disappeared from the second half.

      If Space Bros maintains a more consistent tone & doesn’t sacrifice its excellent combination when the stakes get higher then it will surpass even the great Planetes.

      I’ve high expectations of this show.

    3. I think Planetes is overrated, man. Perhaps because there aren’t that many realistic space theme seinen shows out there (no, Cowboy Bebop doesn’t count as one, even if it is one of the best ever). I tried to watch it many times and I just can’t do it. It wasn’t that good for me. It had too many weird eccentric characters for no apparent reason and just didn’t do it for me. Maybe because it was made years ago (8 years!!) and I didn’t get its particular japanese humour and style. Also I haven’t watched “Moonlight Mile”, which came out a few years after Planetes, and while some reviews said that it wasn’t as good as Planetes, it looked actually more promising to me.

      Uchuu Kyoudai, on the other hand, is already better than Planetes, based on what I read from 11 or so chapters of the source material. Sure it can screw itself up as it just started, anime-wise, but from what I read so far and this 1st episode, this will be great.

  3. I loved the first episode. I now have even higher expectations for this series, and the themes of following your dreams and brotherhood really appeals to a sap like me. Uchuu Kyoudai has a lot of heart, which a lot of shows, anime or not, are missing these days. It’s just the first episode, but I can already see myself following this through to the end.

    1. Second thanks for those of us in that age bracket, Luxor. I admit to have had some reservations going into this show but glad I watched the first episode. As an older brother, I really felt the premises touching me deeper than I thought. The line he said in that fast food spot: “What have I been doing with my life?” made me think about what I’ve been doing up to now and what impact I’ve had/done in general. Mutta-kun’s tears from a rekindled dream and maybe some light/hope from the dismal period he had gone through certainly felt true.
      Definitely looking forward to more of this goodness.
      Go Mutta-kun, I’m at least sure a few of us are rooting for your success!

  4. Thanks for blogging Uchuu Kyoudai Moomba and everyone should watch this, period! 😉
    What stands out most for me in this episode was the Mutta’s emotional struggle and the family dynamics which hits me at all the right spot. It was funny, heartwarming and importantly sends a very powerful message. Not sure whose brilliant idea was it to make a series like this since it’s probably gonna bomb in BD sales but thank you A-1 Pictures!
    Also wanna point out there will be an Uchuu Kyoudai live-action film this summer. Pretty boy Oguri Shun as Mutta? This is gonna be interesting. http://www.tokyohive.com/2011/03/manga-uchuu-kyoudai-gets-a-live-action-adaptation-starring-oguri-shun-okada-masaki/

    Seishun Otoko
    1. I agree! Everyone should at least give it a chance! On BD sales, while there’s a fair chance you’re right, there’s always that slight possibility we could end up surprised by it.

      Somehow the live action movie slipped my mind while I was writing the post – it’s definitely something I intend to check out.

  5. I think this show is going to be the best, even better than Fate/zero for Spring season. Sure I like Fate/zero, but as good seinen show is very hard to come by and Fate/zero is more geared towards to mainstream with high budget; I’d like to give this one an edgy!! Finally something more intelligent than overwhelming majority of the same old mediocre stupid sh$t they keep pumping out there every season!!!

    Too premature, you say??? Well, I went ahead and read the available source material and it’s great! So I know this will be good. Unfortunately, the translated manga is only available up to 1 volume and a few more chapters when in fact, 16 volumes has come out in Japan. What a shame. So by the episode 3 or 4, there won’t be any more spoilers for non-japanese readers anyway.

  6. Mutta really struck a good chord with me. While he is bummed about falling behind his little brother and generally being less than successful in life, he follows his own personal philosophy of sorts and doesn’t compromise on that. When his boss mocks his little brother, he casts Level 5 French Headbutt. When customers are making his job experience miserable, he straight up quits instead of making excuses such as “I need to work harder and make the money in order to attain X arbitrary goal.” I mean, there are times when you should suck in your pride, but life is about taking falls, getting back up, and seeing the opportunities in front of you instead of dwelling upon your losses. It’s taken me a lot as a person to see this in my 20 years of Earth-inhabitance, and to see this earnest little theme show up nearly brought tears to my eyes.

    So, everything about this show really impressed me. It’s not often that we see a fairly down-to-earth(?) portrayal of young men, their dreams, and their struggles with not only the expectations of society at large – but also their own expectations.

    1. I completely agree. In particular, the family relationships are what draw me to the series. The way Hibito and their mother give Mutta small pushes towards achieving his dreams impressed me a lot. I’m really looking forward to seeing the brotherly bond deepen (hopefully) and watching Mutta blaze a trail to the future (ho ho ho).

  7. Uchuu Kyodai for sleeper hit of the season. Haha. With Mutta-san being born under an unlucky star, with various mishaps during his life, I was thinking he’d be the adult version of Kamijou Touma (Fuko Da/Such Misfortune) XD

    Anyone thought that Mutta-san’s dog was cute? I want to see that dog go to space as well. Haha.

    1. umm, actually that little puggy is Show Spoiler ▼

      Not that it matters much. You will see around episode 4, I’d asume. Anyway it’s time for pugs to shine finally! I can’t recall any bulldog family breed getting a major role. It’s always been dogs with pointy noses. The smashed faces have been suffering for so long under blatant discrimination!!

  8. If there is a genre called “motivational,” then this anime may be a good example of it! It is not easy to keep going when your whole life is turned upside down. It will be interesting to see how the story develops.

  9. Not many people will watch this. It’s a shame though, while harem animes will always be more famous.

    Anyway, this was my most anticipated anime and it delivered more than I expected. Now I just have to wait for Sakamichi no Appolon and I am golden for this season. The rest will be decided by the 3 episode rule.

  10. This anime makes me want to cry. I love it, I love the feeling it gives off. The romanticism of going into space. I don’t know why but I think they have some thing going on with middle-age protagonists who are in rut trying to be something or like… I am looking forward for the next episode!

    Jack Vojack
  11. being an uni graduate from 2011 and had 1 short term jobs 2 internship since i graduated… i cant help but sympathise with mutta… the feeling of being useless; the feeling of inferiority in comparison to my sibling; the feeling that your own parents thinks you are incompetent, along with an e-mail folder full of rejection letters, some are even from supermarket and mc donalds (because they think u’d leave cause u r over qualify). I found myself tearing up a little bit 🙁

    1. Hey no216332- on a personal note- been there. Don’t give up hope! I went through that during the early 2000’s. It was frustrating and made me want to just cry. You’ll find your landing place.

      Banana Furikake
  12. I’ve always wanted to go to space. But when I started to think of the resources needed to do it, I was like, “Or…maybe not.”

    Brilliant first episode. Now I want subbed versions of the OP and ED. While I was watching the episode, I was feeling this slight Tiger and Bunny vibe – how it can be quite funny and serious at the same time (which I like) – then I started recognizing “the voice.” Also, the use of the three-panel frames is just genius.

    I do wonder if they need to get permission to use real-world organizations (NASA and JAXA) for this show – I find pretty cool.


    To quickly summarise the episode…


  13. Wow, I wasn’t expecting this one to be this great when I first read its preview. I can’t believe I overlooked this one! You’ve just gotta love the characters and the plot. I’m really looking forward to this series, thanks for blogging it.

    The Story You Don't Know

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