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Space Brothers Episode #22 Anime Review

4 min read

The third exam has ended and the choices are made.

What They Say:
The third astronaut selection exam has finally ended. Team A used rock-paper-scissors to select two members. Whose dreams are still alive?

The Review:
Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers)
While the third selection actually ended recently, we haven’t gotten the real word on what’s going on just yet, which was kind of frustrating as we saw the various participants go off on their own after leaving the isolation area that they were living in. Having them all get together again here for drinks and food is definitely a big positive as we get to see them hang out and have fun in a way that really works well, and makes clear who they actually chose with Serika and Nitta having succeeded through the luck of the game that they played. Which made sense since they all had various attributes that would have worked well. But you also have to feel rather sad that Mutta didn’t make it further at this point, which has you wondering how they’re going to advance things for him in the scheme of the series.

While we get that element of the show, we also see the administrators talking over the events that transpired and how several of them have a hard time grasping what Team A did. We get the nod towards the other teams and who passed, but it’s inconsequential in the end to the larger dialogue going on here about the changes in the testing that went on and how the bonds of the teams were different this time around compared to the fair amount of historical data that they have. It adds a welcome wrinkle to things since there’s a certain knowing by some of those in the room that works nicely. The series doesn’t ignore some of the other things going on either, as we see Mutta trying to come to terms with it by just getting away from it all for a bit and hitting a movie – and he has such choices!

One of the things that appeals about the series is the way it can weave so many small elements together to a larger story. The potential of additional candidates obviously opens the door, but Mutta is sure that Kenji would be the one picked. We see how those in Houston are dealing with things since life goes on and Hibito’s practice runs are going forward, including some kids being able to watch which is hugely inspirational. Between that and the time spent in Japan where we see Mutta just enjoying being out in the city, coming across Fukuda and really having that kind of quiet, simple but effective time works incredibly well. They’re not forced moments of fluff, but light moments that let us really connect well with these characters in a way that is, at times, very surprising and almost shocking.

In Summary:
While the path is circuitous as one might expect with what happens with the events after the third exam, it is pretty much expected. But there was also that chance that things could go any number of other ways as well, which is a big plus for the show in that there is enough that’s not firmly set. There’s a laid back feeling of acceptance that’s natural going on here for much of it and some very good character exploration and a solid bit of fun along the way as well. But when it hits those final few minutes, where the call is made, the reactions come down and you know that things are going where they are, you can’t help but to feel a tingle throughout your body in seeing it all open up for those involved across the whole range of characters. This is just one more stage completed, building on top of an amazing series.

Grade: A-

Streamed By: Crunchyroll

Review Equipment:
Sony KDS-R70XBR2 70″ LCoS 1080P HDTV, Dell 10.1 Netbook via HDMI set to 1080p, Onkyo TX-SR605 Receiver and Panasonic SB-TP20S Multi-Channel Speaker System With 100-Watt Subwoofer.