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EP. REVIEW: Astra Lost in Space


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MiloTheFirst



Joined: 10 Dec 2014
Posts: 382
PostPosted: Fri Jul 19, 2019 9:18 pm Reply with quote
I really wanted to like this one, the technical merits are great and I have always been a sucker for this type of castaway scenarios. but for some reason I just found most of the characters insufferable specially the lead couple, I guess sometimes something is just not made for you
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myskaros



Joined: 13 Jun 2011
Posts: 544
PostPosted: Fri Jul 19, 2019 9:32 pm Reply with quote
I'd say if you can put aside your current dislike of characters (they do change as the show progresses), spoiler[the betrayal plot gets really, really interesting in the latter half of the story.]
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Gwydion



Joined: 16 Feb 2008
Posts: 134
PostPosted: Sat Jul 20, 2019 10:45 am Reply with quote
Really enjoying how the anime is adapting the material so far. It took me a little bit to fully get invested in the manga, but watching the early portion with that later knowledge, it changes the sort of things I notice as the story goes along. Not trying to over-hype it, of course, but I do hope other people will stick with it long enough to experience the payoff of all this setup.
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steelmirror



Joined: 22 Oct 2015
Posts: 269
PostPosted: Sat Jul 20, 2019 11:58 pm Reply with quote
Yeah this one is definitely in my strike zone. As a kid, this was basically my default fantasy daydreaming scenario. Getting lost in space and exploring the galaxy is just the most appealing pitch you can make to me, so it shouldn't be shocking that I'm loving this on so far.

I think the characters have been pretty good so far, all things considered. The fact that I could remember all of them after the first episode and could give the basics of their personality is a credit to the character designs.The fact that the characters still have some surprises and depth when they get a little focus is even better. I've enjoyed the overall bright and optimistic tone so far as well; they get put into bad situations and have hangups, but in the end these kids (so far) are good kids, and have risen to the challenge. I love me a dark gritty show, but bright and shiny is good every once in a while too, especially in a retro space show.

Really happy with summer so far.
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Covnam



Joined: 31 May 2005
Posts: 1429
PostPosted: Thu Jul 25, 2019 9:36 pm Reply with quote
Another great episode this week, though I hope that at least some of these kids don't have terrible parents...

Quote:
Luckily for the crew, Charce's biology background lets him figure out how this works, which proves invaluable when they all end up poisoned


Was it just me that found it obvious that a tall structure surrounded by corpse in a crater extremely suspicious right away? You'd think the character with the background in biology would at least question it. Sure he figured it out in the end, but not until he had literally become a part of that life cycle.
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steelmirror



Joined: 22 Oct 2015
Posts: 269
PostPosted: Thu Jul 25, 2019 10:02 pm Reply with quote
Covnam wrote:
Quote:
Luckily for the crew, Charce's biology background lets him figure out how this works, which proves invaluable when they all end up poisoned


Was it just me that found it obvious that a tall structure surrounded by corpse in a crater extremely suspicious right away? You'd think the character with the background in biology would at least question it. Sure he figured it out in the end, but not until he had literally become a part of that life cycle.
Not just you. The instant I saw the dead animals, I figured that the spore plants (mushrooms I guess) attracted them and then killed them. The moment Yunhua randomly decided to give that flower/fruit thing to the dying animal, it was obvious how the episode was going to end. I imagine most viewers above the age of 9 thought the same.

Not a big deal, I still liked the episode. I do hope that every ep isn't as ridiculously easy to predict, but like the review said, it was so earnest in its big emotions that I still had fun.
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Merida
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Joined: 21 Feb 2012
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PostPosted: Fri Jul 26, 2019 12:02 am Reply with quote
Am i the only one who hasn't read the manga or why isn't there any kind of speculation about who wants all those kids dead (and why)? We know they all seem to have strained relationships with their families, but all those parents joining in some kind of murder pact just to get rid of their problem children, seems to be a bit over-excessive...as for who the traitor might be, it's probably not one of the obvious choices like Yunhua or Ulgar.
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steelmirror



Joined: 22 Oct 2015
Posts: 269
PostPosted: Fri Jul 26, 2019 12:25 am Reply with quote
Merida wrote:
Am i the only one who hasn't read the manga or why isn't there any kind of speculation about who wants all those kids dead (and why)?
I'll log my guess for being Aries. I don't actually have a reason for that, she just seems like she'd be one of the more surprising choices.

I'm not giving too much thought to the rationale because I'm not sure we have any real way to guess. We don't know much about the world of Astra outside of specifically our goofball cast, so I don't think there is really any intelligent speculation to be done (yet) about what is really going on. Maybe the revelation will come and I'll realize that there were clues I've been ignoring all along, but for now this feels less like a "fair play" mystery where we have a chance of figuring out the solution, and more like something that will be revealed all in one go eventually.

I could be wrong, of course!
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AholePony



Joined: 04 Jun 2015
Posts: 294
Location: Arizona
PostPosted: Fri Jul 26, 2019 1:51 am Reply with quote
[quote="steelmirror"][quote="Covnam"]
Quote:
Not a big deal, I still liked the episode. I do hope that every ep isn't as ridiculously easy to predict, but like the review said, it was so earnest in its big emotions that I still had fun.


I wish it was no big deal for me but it's driving me nuts. I feel like they should have titled this Plot Contrivance: The Anime.

This show has been so odd with its tone. It hints at and deals with some pretty heavy topics but then also feels like they're aiming for their viewers having an average age of 7 or something.

I love journey type adventure anime and space stuff, so I'll keep at it in hopes things even out. It looks great visually at least.
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Kirki



Joined: 11 Jun 2019
Posts: 20
PostPosted: Fri Jul 26, 2019 2:23 am Reply with quote
This is one of the series where the character study and development are more important than anything else, and at the same time it's trying to stay lighthearted enough and not to venture into really dark territories like Infinite Ryvius did. Combine those two and you get "dangers" that don't really matter and you can predict that the MC will solve everything, so no worries there. (well it will seem like they are in a pinch, but they will always overcome it, because not overcoming it means death and this does not seem to be this kind of show). This robs the series of any kind of momentum or urgency - it's just seeing those kids learing how to cooperate and move past their psychological issues.

Now, the point is, did we really need such supposedly dangerous and potentially deadly set-up? They could have learned the same stuff during a simple camp, like the one they were supposed to go to in the first place.

It remains to be seen.
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myskaros



Joined: 13 Jun 2011
Posts: 544
PostPosted: Thu Aug 01, 2019 7:46 pm Reply with quote
Kirki wrote:
This is one of the series where the character study and development are more important than anything else, and at the same time it's trying to stay lighthearted enough and not to venture into really dark territories like Infinite Ryvius did. Combine those two and you get "dangers" that don't really matter and you can predict that the MC will solve everything, so no worries there. (well it will seem like they are in a pinch, but they will always overcome it, because not overcoming it means death and this does not seem to be this kind of show). This robs the series of any kind of momentum or urgency - it's just seeing those kids learing how to cooperate and move past their psychological issues.

In the interest of not spoiling too much, I can give you two pieces of information:

1. With episode 5, we've seen 21 out of 49 chapters from the original manga.
2. The rest of the series is not going to only follow the pattern laid out in the first 5 episodes. There are still huge developments to come.
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Covnam



Joined: 31 May 2005
Posts: 1429
PostPosted: Thu Aug 01, 2019 11:04 pm Reply with quote
Right as I started this episode I thought to my self, 'I wonder if we're ever going to see what's going on back on earth...'. Good timing.
I also thought the parents were all a bit too ok with the situation (other than Aries mom), but also thought that it seemed consistent with how great parents they were. I might be miss-remembering, but did both the VP and the politician both say basically the same thing about how they were being torn up inside? It seemed like they both said a similarly prepared statement rather than their actual feelings
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Eivion



Joined: 26 Dec 2008
Posts: 551
PostPosted: Fri Aug 02, 2019 12:54 am Reply with quote
Covnam wrote:
Right as I started this episode I thought to my self, 'I wonder if we're ever going to see what's going on back on earth...'. Good timing.
I also thought the parents were all a bit too ok with the situation (other than Aries mom), but also thought that it seemed consistent with how great parents they were. I might be miss-remembering, but did both the VP and the politician both say basically the same thing about how they were being torn up inside? It seemed like they both said a similarly prepared statement rather than their actual feelings

You missed nothing. It was either the exact same phrase or close enough. Never read the manga but it felt like all but maybe two of the parents were in on the conspiracy. I mean just the speed alone they are trying to have them declared dead makes it pretty obvious something is up.
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Fred Lougee



Joined: 01 Oct 2018
Posts: 92
PostPosted: Fri Aug 02, 2019 7:16 am Reply with quote
"Beware the Stobor"

That's from Doorway in the Sky by Robert Heinlein. It's set a couple hundred years in the future, they don't have FTL space travel but they do have very precise "gates". wormholes they can open up to any location. Over short distances, New York to Tokyo, you can keep that gate open indefinitely, but for long, interstellar distances it takes a prohibitive amount of energy to keep it open for more than a few minutes.

Earth is rather crowded, there are a lot of inhabitable worlds out there, but because of the practical limitations of gate travel they can't just send through a ready-made human civilization. The first colonists have to start from scratch, build the beginnings of a town, with latter arrivals prepared to help. That's the general background.

The story background is a group of high school kids who get dropped via gate onto a planet a couple of thousand light years away for a training camp. It's a survival camp for people who might one day go "founding parties" to new planets. They are told only that the planet is safe so far as anyone knows, the gate will open in ten days with the folks coming to bring them home, so work hard until then, and "beware the stobor".

Well, "stobor", the MC learns at the end of the story, is just "robots" spelled backwards, and the warning is meant to prepare the kids to stay on their toes against unexpected dangers. The ten days comes and goes, the return party never shows up, eventually the kids realize they have to stop treating this like it's a survival test, meaning competing with one another, and start treating like it's an actual survival situation.

The first Ep. of Astra put me in mind of the book, but it had been so long since I read it I had to run to internet helps for a memory refresh. Here's the cool thing about the book...the group of kids is mixed race and both boys and girls. It's hinted at but not stated that the MC is Black, Heinlein later confirmed that the character is. In the story girls are put in positions of authority within the small community of a few dozen, based completely upon merit. The book was published in 1954, better than a decade before Gene Roddenberry pitched Star Trek to the networks.
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Gina Szanboti



Joined: 03 Aug 2008
Posts: 8365
PostPosted: Fri Aug 02, 2019 10:07 am Reply with quote
Huh, I could've sworn I posted this in the other thread, but I guess not. Anyway, ever since the reveal of what Funi overheard, I've had Btooom! vibes, thinking all the kids were on the trip because their parents wanted them dead. Sure looks that way now, except for Aries, who was apparently a very recent transfer student. However, there's certainly a lot more to it than that, what with Quitterie and Zack's parents working on memory storage and transplantation, and the DNA thing.

[just me speculating] spoiler[If they're planning on cloning or something, I'm not sure how their kids being dead would be helpful to them. Maybe the DNA testing is to prove you're not a clone? And they needed to get rid of the kids because all of them are? Luca's dad was apparently famously opposed to the testing, but lost that battle. That probably ties in somehow with why Yunhua's mom was so adamant that she never sing in public or draw attention to herself in any way. She didn't want anyone to remember her. And why Kanata's father wanted him to be the same kind of athlete he had been. And only Aries seems to have any sort of close relationship with her parent(s).]
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