「酒に酔う」 (Sake ni You)
“Drunk on Alcohol”

The most common definition of moé I see is that it’s the quality that invokes the desire to protect. It’s the number one defence mechanism of kittens everywhere; their large heads and round eyes deceives us into taking them in even though all we’ll get in return is a scratched up sofa. it’s the same deal with human babies too, most evident when you look at all the photos your most annoying co-worker has of their kid that they keep wanting to share on Facebook. Yumemi this week was certainly overflowing with the moé juice. Every time she tripped and fell was bound to illicit an audible d’aww from viewers, or perhaps a giggle of schadenfreude. I must have described Yumemi’s naivete as childlike before, and as Planetarian moves outdoors (while still being very dialogue heavy; this was a visual novel, remember) Yumemi’s childishness becomes all the more apparent in her simple guilelessness.

I think that Yumemi had actually gone beyond that now, and it was time for Planetarian to make full use of its science-fiction setting and the fact that Yumemi is a robot. Robots in sci-fi have traditionally been a handy way to invent an alien logic system to contrast our own human thought processes, and in that way Yumemi plays foil to basically the entire post-apocalypse setting. She is not simply naive; she is in fact locked into being able to see the world in a very specific way. And she is not childlike, because children are inherently selfish until they manage to learn some empathy, whereas Yumemi hardly has a self-preservation instinct, warning the junker against tripping before being ironic. She’s just very dedicated to customer service, I suppose. Or perhaps it’s just a product of the good-natured optimism and her sincere wish for a better tomorrow.

I would say that those three qualities—her unique world view, her love and dedication for humanity, and her desire to see a better tomorrow—all play into each other and makes her an impossibly positive character in an otherwise bleak setting. She is a wellspring of hope forlorn in the post-apocalypse. Planetarian argues that this hope is intoxicating, in ways that alcohol cannot match. For a while our junker is drunk on it as well, dreaming of a higher calling, of more people able to taste a sip of that hope as well. And then, reality decides to sober him up with a glass of tomato juice and a kick in the nuts.

Again, those three, great and positive qualities that define Yumemi. Are those actually, really, pragmatically sustainable? This episode forces onto Yumemi a choice: either stay in this sarcophagus, and let herr planetarium’s light go out with her, or abandon her city and her planetarium, but perhaps take its light with her. A sacrifice is demanded of our cute little robot either way. She does make it, but how much does she understand her choice? How desirable is understanding, anyway? Can she maintain the rest of her innocence? There’s one episode left, preceded by a cliffhanger at that; what else will be asked of her yet?

‘Please, do not divide the heavens in two.’


  1. Honestly I was expecting a bit more doom and gloom this week and I was rather surprised with what we got. Well not that I’m unhappy with the episode but I guess that for me this was the weakest episode so far. Maybe because we know that Hoshino is a robot and all but whereas this episode would have been the one where the protagonist “discovers his feelings” this episode is pretty much the same but with the twist that it’s not really love but a change of heart. Heart warming in a certain way and it’s nice to see the cold, tough junker melt even if it’s been happening since episode 2. Well again given that this is a Key series with its bitter sweet endings, though delayed a week and though we got a bit more of the sweet we still have that bitter pill to swallow next week.

    PS I seriously liked the practicality of his “vision of the future” though. I think it’s one of those things that just makes all the sense in the world given the character backgrounds.

  2. Well, in today some could argument that this Robot could be an “Siri” on Legs, an Companion against this loneliness of the MC, he knows she is a robot. But she behaves like an Human being, well at last her AI do this trick, and he found what he was looking for, not being alone, finally enable to talk to someone, to care for someone, in short for not being alone anymore. The same base idea of the “Plastic memories”, they are more for the Humans customer to fill holes in their hearts

    Is there any hope, if he can “save” her OS/Brain/Soul on some kind of USB Stick and find an Clone robot out there and revive her?… But i wrote this already.. it’s a dream. You go there an suppress or delete the Clones original OS/Brain/Soul. is that nit just an replacement?

    1. A bunch of movies, books etc have actually taken it up but it still really just feels artificial. No one will really accept tje idea that you have feelings for a program or robot etc. If anything making programs or robots more human is meant to make interacting with them more natural

      1. well, you can exchange the Robot with someone that will die on Cancer. Her battery will only left for 4 days, so perhaps this is the real point. in the VN she could be an placeholder of someone you began to love but will lose to cancer

        This show has many metaphors if you want to search for them

  3. It’s like finding water in desert to read a nice review of this very good adaptation. It didn’t seem to got that much attention.

    A little nitpick on the use of the word “planetarian”. I also used to think that it’s a misspelling of “planetarium”. But after the news of adapatation and remembering the “S-Planetarian” translation in ConRevo, it has dawn on me that it might actually means “someone of the planet”. By googling a bit, several meanings are found:

    1) n. A planetrium operator or staff of a planetrium.
    2) n. Inhabitants of a planet.
    3) adj. of or related to a planetarian.
    4) Annual journal of the International Planetarium Society

    It is quite interesting that both of the two noun meanings are relevent, that Yumemi is of the planetarian profession, and it’s also a story about the Earth planetarians.

  4. Planetarian is the best anime of the season so far. However, judging form the pace of this episode, the doom is imminent. Yumemi once allowed two kids to watch the star show for free. She also pretended that the junker was the “special number” customer even though he wasn’t. So there is evidence that her AI is not dictated by simple commands and is capable of making human-like decisions. If her AI is so advanced, then she must have “realized” that her doom was near. That’s why she made an excuse to “escort” the “customer” so that she could have one last look of the world.


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