Congratulations, Mutta Nanba - today is the first day of the rest of your life.
a reminder of what she's lost before she had the chance to keep her promise. Even nicer was a look at Kitamura Ena, the member of the JAXA Five (heh, I like that) whom we knew least about. But why no Nitta? We now know less about him than Ena, despite the fact that he was on Mutta's team in the isolation pods. In fact, we know less about him than Ena's sister. It seems as odd oversight, and I hope it's one we see corrected before too long.
puts on his jumpsuit when he gets to Narita - the only one of the five to do so, in fact. I initially interpreted this as a sign of his desire to revel in his new celebrity a bit, but it turns out it was a joke by Murasaki - a mail he sent (only to Mutta and Kenji - interpret away) with a tine "j/k" that was only visible after extended scrolling. Which the anal Kenji did of course, though the anal Mutta did not. Kenji later credits this to Murasaki testing the pair of them, sending them a coded message to pay close attention to details and act like an astronaut even if not dressed like one. Personally I think that's horseshit, and Murasaki was simply being a smart-ass and Mutta fell for it.
unscripted encounter as a celebrity. There were interesting moments in Houston, too, where Mutta's pairing of blue jumpsuit and ten-gallon hat made an altogether cooler impression. The big new player in Houston seems likely to be Vincent Bold, as mentioned last week played by Tsuda Kenjiro. Bold's M.O. so far seems to be pretty stock material - terrorize the newbies by driving too fast, dismiss the foreigners as lost causes, race through life at breakneck pace. I will say this - for someone who was in the military, he has a very odd habit - he never lets anyone finish a sentence. I get the idea - he's in a hurry in every respect, no time to waste - but if you try that with a superior officer, there'll be hell to pay. He has no problems disrespecting his NASA boss, Cmdr. Jason Butler (Tachiki Fumihiko, Gendou Ikari himself) by finishing his sentences, entering his office without permission and leaving before his orders are explained. With Bold set to take charge of the new candidate training, there's some potential for formula conflict and redemption here, but I hope the series doesn't stoop to that.
Ozzy and wife (shouldn't she be named Harriett?) met Mutta at the airport, and off they whisked him and Kenji to Hibito's house. Will Mutta continue to live there after Hibito returns from the moon (and re-adaptation to gravity) I wonder? As Kenji and Mutta watch an American sitcom (I've missed to wry but affectionate take on American culture in this series) Kenji begins to tell his friend about an "odd question" Murasaki asked him - something about the training being held every two years - but uncharacteristically becomes hesitant and never finishes his thought. It's an odd moment, and clearly the lead in to next week's plot.