「わたしの名前は伊東せりかです」 (Watashi no Namae wa Itou Serika desu)
“My Name is Itou Serika”
The conclusion to last week’s cliff-hanger was pretty much as expected… or was it? Okay, I guess it was really, but Mutta’s elaborate tale of checking the odometer when boarding and disembarking the bus, combined with the extensive reverse calculations he used to get there had even me fooled for a little while. It’s pretty surprising to see how easily Mutta has begun ‘making full use of his luck’ as Ozzy would call it – I’d half expected him to come clean at some point. As I suspected when I saw him turn to look, rather than actively seeking the time, he was in fact checking to see if his assumptions on the driver’s baldness were correct. There’s still something fairly impressive about how he managed to perform the reverse calculations to figure out how far the bus had travelled. Whether or not he can actually tell how fast a vehicle is going by the engine is uncertain, but it’s definitely a skill I can imagine him having.
Contrary to a lot of speculation last week, there was no mention whatsoever on whether or not knowing the actual current time is important in space. While it may be true that all you really need to live by is a frame of reference (so theoretically it doesn’t matter whether your time is in sync with the rest of the world), it would likely be somewhat detrimental to be living on a different cycle to mission control – scheduled check-ins would be much harder to co-ordinate for example. Of course, merely following any frame of reference being more important to having the correct time is a moot point here since the test was evidently to work out the correct time based on observations made during the journey. It might not have any effect on the results in the long run, but only Team A and Team B managed to get roughly the right time (Team C is somewhat irrelevant anyway beyond their potential use as an illustration of how to completely fail the tests).
It would seem we have a possible rival for Mutta in the genius-level observation skills department. Tomii, our Rubik’s cube fanatic, seems to share Mutta’s uncanny ability to notice small details and make use of them. In a sense, this episode served as a better introduction to some of the characters we’ll be following for the rest of the test, Team A in particular. In addition to Mutta and Serika (who I’m sure need no introduction by this point) we have Nitta Reiji (Hoshino Takanori) who studied sports medicine and practices kendo (and continually makes me think of more typical shounen manga/anime characters); Fukuda Naoto (Bando Naoki), possibly one of the most suited for space travel given his experience in rocket development; and the ever disagreeable Furuya Yasushi (Naitou Ryou) with his Kansai-ben and chimpanzee research.
I personally agree with Team A’s decision when it comes to the subject of picking the two members to nominate at the end of the tests – it’s far too early to make any solid decisions on how to go about it when none of the team members have really had a chance to get to know each other. When everyone is better acquainted, the two who are most suited to be astronauts might begin to come to light or a better way to make the selection might present itself. Team B seems to want to use a point system, though Kenji will likely be the voice of reason in deciding on a more suitable way to judge. I get the feeling Team C and their ballot box will serve the purpose of teaching us what should not be done if you want to pass the exams.
- Mutta takes one for the team! Or for Serika at any rate. His luck seems to be running with him on that front.
- Space food! I can’t say I’ve ever really wanted to try it, but I guess there’s a novelty to it.
- Giving someone a name because you want to call them that actually seems like a better way to name a child than trying to attach a meaning. Another point in Mutta’s favour for his complementing of Serika’s name!
- Cooking together is also going to give Mutta a lot of time to bond with Serika. I foresee much bonding over the course of the next episode or two!