「頭にまつわるエトセトラ」 (Dou ni Matsuwaru Eto Setora)
“Et Cetera in My Head”

At last, the moment of truth – will Mutta be going into outer space? Or will he fail the exams and never manage to reclaim his place ahead of his younger brother? Or so it would seem… but this episode manages to draw the issue out leaving his fate in question once more (though things no longer look quite as bleak).

It would seem that Mutta’s supporter from earlier episodes actually has deeper reasons for his desire to see Mutta pass the tests. Having failed to become an astronaut himself due to ‘bad luck,’ it almost seems as though he’s been living vicariously through Mutta and Hibito all this time (just like us!). As someone who has watched the two brothers since the early days of their fascination with space, I can see how he’d become attached and want to see them both succeed – he knows how strong their dreams are, that they would spend so much time at JAXA, and he doesn’t want to see them crushed for the wrong reasons. On reflection, perhaps if you stray from your original chosen path, returning to it at a much later date might show just how much determination you have – to be able to return to it after having given up on it would take more resolve than sticking to the path without wavering.

Mutta’s former boss is a dick. I can understand his anger at having been headbutted (though he had it coming), but to go so far as to sabotage Mutta’s future with tales of misdeeds, some of which aren’t even true? I’m fully aware that this is something that actually happens to people – one slip-up and if your boss has enough influence, that’s it for your career in that industry, but that doesn’t make it any less wrong. On the other hand, Mutta did assault his boss, and it most certainly wasn’t the first time he’d thrown a headbutt at someone. It was quite a poor decision and it really illustrates how a ‘small’ mistake can have grave consequences down the line. Let’s just hope that Mutta’s defender can smooth things over!

Overseas in Mutta’s ‘holy land,’ someone is having quite a bad day. If hearing of his boss’ intervention and the subsequent dashing of his hopes (Mutta has no idea that he may still have a chance at this point) wasn’t enough, the envy he must feel would probably mar what should be an enjoyable experience at the Johnson Space Center. Everyone adores Hibito, from the audiences of talk shows to the other employees at NASA. He’s even nicknamed ‘Samurai Boy,’ which admittedly fits really well given his personality. In Mutta’s words, he only looks forward, working towards his goal without letting anything distract him from it.

The amount of effort Hibito clearly puts into the physical training makes me wonder whether that’s the extent of his abilities. Would he feel the need to train so hard if he was the most intelligent of the other astronauts? Perhaps, but we have yet to really see Hibito really show his intellect – in my experience, passing exams is often as much about how much information you can memorise as it is how well you can actually use that information. Where the other astronauts jog, Hibito sprints; where they do just enough weight training to meet the required amount, Hibito sets new records. It almost feels as though he has something to prove. If we weren’t explicitly told that he always sprints, I would think that maybe he was showing off for Mutta’s benefit.

So once again it looks like we’ll have to wait with bated breath to see if Mutta will have his dreams dashed. I’ll admit that at this point I have a strong feeling that they won’t be, but we can only wait and see!

Random thoughts:

  • Mutta refers to himself as Hibito’s foil which is slightly ironic when I’ve been seeing it the other way around this whole time. But it does bring up the question… who is the protagonist? It seems to be Mutta at this point, but that could easily change. The title is Space Brothers after all (the plural is important).
  • What a horrible first day on the job that would be – to have two children recite the lines you’re supposed to say when you stumble over them. Scars for life.
  • It’s kind of weird to hear the anime switch back and forth between Japanese and English at will – it makes it hard to decide whether we’re supposed to assume everyone is speaking ‘English’ or if most of the Americans the two brothers interact with are fluent Japanese speakers.
  • ‘I fell down.’ ‘That means you headbutted the earth!’ Note to self: falling over is much more epic than it may seem at the time.

Full-length images: 01, 03, 09, 11, 14, 15, 17, 26, 29, 32





  1. Relationships have always been an important factor in determining success and this episode highlights that really well. Let’s hope the brownie points that Mutta has accumulated over the years can help him pull through, he might actually be luckier than we initially thought. Hibito again showcased why he’s the more successful brother in life. Yes, he might be taller, stronger and better looking, but importantly, he works very hard and does not let anything distract him from his goal. That is a quality we could all use.

    Seishun Otoko
  2. I don’t care what anybody says. This show is the best of Spring 2012.

    Fate Zero still looks great (due to its mighty budget). But it’s losing its steam a bit.
    Jormungand is also good. So is Sakamichi no Apollon.

    But nothing, NOTHING can soothe me like this show does. I mean this show is still pure gold EVEN after I spoiled myself by reading the translated manga ahead, as if it doesn’t matter at all. (can’t say the same for Sakamichi no Apollon….Spoiling myself ahead definitely ruined that show for me a bit). Seriously this show makes other shows slightly immature. A child’s plays, if you will, comparatively speaking.

    1. I dunno. The only shows where I haven’t missed a week and had to do catch ups are Sakamichi, Tsuritama, Nazo no Kanojo X and this. I would be hard to pick one favourite out of that lot. They’re all special in their own ways and I would not want to drop any of those. They all make me so happy every week.

  3. I wouldn’t be surprised if Mutta actually failed the space test, and then NASA offering him a position or something, or that NASA puts in a good word, because the woman looked alot at Mutta

    that look could either be DAT afro or this guy has potential

  4. This episode might not have been the most crucial one, seeing the lack of comments suggest that most felt the same. Yet it lay down the foundations of what is to come in the near future.
    The training lady of Hibito who was (even thought she wanted to impress Mutta) somewhat taken back by Mutta’s abilities.
    The guy that remembered the brother from way back and saw in them his own old aspirirations motivating him to take the extra step for Mutta.
    Some flashbacks from the past that showed that Mattu had (has) the same motivation and inspiration that rivals his brothers. He’s willing to take all in the line for someone else and that trait will probably take him all the way into space


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