This episode had more danger signs that the perimeter of Area 51.
Mutta's backup crewmates seem especially likeable yet, because characters can grow on you over time. Andy has, though hopefully that's the only growing he's doing - it would seem as if he's dodgy on NASA height limits already (76 inches is the cutoff). No, the problem is that Koyama-sensei has a real problem with stereotypes (even by Japanese standards) and this crew is a walking collection of them.
Betty Rain, the angry broad whose curves the camera fixates on as if it had oppai radar (I was glad Mutta had the sense not to compare her tattoo to Apo’s). Carlo Greco, the classic depiction of a chauvinistic, arrogant Mediterranean male. And worst of all is Phillipe Louis, the Jamaican-American who's shown as having no attention span and bad hygiene habits. There's even a joke based on Carlo not wanting to get into a space suit after Phillipe, which hovers on the very age of being incredibly offensive but might charitably be "forgiven" as merely unintentionally insensitive. We've been down this road before, and it's not a good one for Uchuu Kyoudai - there are mines everywhere.
Arizona desert that they're one member short - the main crew is six, and the backup five. The missing component is the commander of course, and Butler has a scheme on that front. It's our cliffhanger (also note the "Moon Telescope Building Plan" manuals on Butler's table) - who will it be (we're cleverly only shown the left arm, which would have the American flag on it even if it were a Japanese astronaut)? We know he turned down the offer once, before relenting. I had a thought that it might be Hibito but I really, really hope not - I think Mutta needs to stake out his own place as an astronaut, which he can't do working under Hibito and his shadow (not to mention other reasons why one might be concerned about Hibito as a mission commander). I actually hope it will be Eddie Jay, but that seems like a real long-shot. Hopefully we'll find out next week, and this won't be one of those times that Space Brothers teases a cliffhanger for way too long.