Please Save My Earth
|Please Save My Earth|
Cover of Please Save My Earth first volume as published by Hakusensha
(Boku no Chikyū o Mamotte)
|Written by||Saki Hiwatari|
|Magazine||Hana to Yume|
|Original run||1987 – 1994|
|Original video animation|
|Directed by||Kazuo Yamazaki|
|Licensed by||VIZ Media|
|Released||December 17, 1993 – September 23, 1994|
|Runtime||30 minutes each|
|Original video animation|
|Music Image Video ~ The Passing of the Golden Age|
|Directed by||Kazuo Yamazaki|
|Episodes||1 x 8 music videos|
|Please Save My Earth Movie: From Alice to Rin-kun|
|Directed by||Kazuo Yamazaki|
Please Save My Earth (ぼくの地球を守って Boku no Chikyū o Mamotte?), sometimes abbreviated Bokutama, is a shōjo science fiction manga by Saki Hiwatari. It was published by Hakusensha from 1987 to 1994 in the magazine Hana to Yume and collected in 21 volumes (tankōbon). The series was adapted as a six-part original video animation (OVA) in 1993. It is about six teenagers and a seven-year-old boy who share common dreams about their past lives as alien scientists who observed the Earth from the Moon. Both the anime OVA and manga are licensed for distribution in North America by Viz Media.
A sequel manga, Boku o Tsutsumu Tsuki no Hikari (The Moonlight That Embraces Me), is currently being serialized in the bimonthly Hana to Yume as well as the special edition magazine, Hana to Yume Plus.
The story centers around high school student Alice Sakaguchi, her seven-year old neighbor Rin Kobayashi, and five other teenage students who have recurring collective dreams about a group of alien scientists stationed on the moon observing and collecting data about the Earth.
Initially, when Alice learns that classmates Jinpachi and Issei have been having common recurring dreams since middle school, she thinks nothing of it until she has one of these "moon dreams" herself. Because of the nature of these dreams, the way Issei always dreams as the same person, and Jinpachi as well, now that Alice has provided a third perspective, they start to believe that people who dream as the other four scientists in their "moon dreams" can each be found.
Almost like it's a game, the three make plans to seek these other people out in the hopes of making sense of these dreams. After a suggestion from Issei, and a little bit of time and luck, they are finally able to make contact with the other four people. But as the six teenagers and one child start to piece together the timeline and content of their dreams, they began to realize that their "dreams" are not simply dreams, but rather suppressed memories of their past incarnations (as those same moon scientists) that ended tragically. And now, as their "game" begins to unravel, the kids must strive to come to terms with what happened in their past lives, as they struggle to prevent their past incarnations' rivalries, jealousies, and dubious actions from taking over their new ones.
Please Save My Earth, like early manga series that suddenly become popular for many different manga artists careers', is an illustration of the development and transition of Hiwatari Saki from a novice to an experienced manga artist. The difference in art style between the volume 1 and volume 21 of the manga is quite drastic, as illustrated in the image to the right.
Another notable point is that Hiwatari Saki appears to be quite the manga otaku, as illustrated by the significant number of homages to various classic anime and manga sprinkled throughout the manga. Additionally, Shion, the main male romantic interest himself, is shown to be quite the manga otaku.
- Manga volume 3
- Doraemon's theme song is sung by Issei and Rin on page 43, on page 91 he appears on a billboard, and he is mentioned again on page 100.
- Black Jack gets a name drop on page 22.
- Saint Seiya gets several shout-outs this volume, the first, Hyoga and Shiryu are seen outside the hospital on page 22.
- Saint Seiya surprises us with another appearance on page 34 when most if not all of the heroes are listed on the class rosters.
- Saint Seiya appears again as Rin poses in the Andromeda armor while Alice is shown in the Phoenix armor on page 41.
- Saint Seiya is holding strong as Issei poses with Jinpachi as Shun (female) and Hyoga (male) respectively on page 86.
- Manga volume 5
- Issei's sister Kyoko's character design is noted here as being influenced by Osamu Tezuka and is a homage to classic style shōjo manga artists such as Miyako Maki, Makoto Takahashi, Hikdeko Mizuno, and Shotaro Ishimori (a guy).
- Manga volume 6
- Osamu Tezuka is mentioned in the Editor's Commons, explaining his background and that he was a humanitarian (similar to how Hiwatari has environmental themes in her manga).
- The 1979 anime Tarō the Dragon Boy gets a mention by Mrs. Yakushimaru on page 77.
- Manga volume 8
- A 1970s-era story called "Uchuusen Pepe Pepe Ran" is mentioned in a 1/4 column by Hiwatari on page 31, with a plot surprisingly similar to the scientists' background.
- Manga volume 11
- Rin is seen reading a Hana to Yume monthly on pages 80–93, the same anthology in which Please Save My Earth was published in Japan.
- Manga volume 15
- Mokuren is seen on page 184 making the pose and jingle associated with classic Betty Boop.
From volume 16 and on, the "Editor's Comments" section was omitted from the English-language adaptation by Viz Media, as P. Duffield, the editor and one responsible for them, was no longer working on the project, as mentioned in the final segment of the "Editor's Comments" in volume 15.
The following flowers are featured in each volume, with a possible symbolism attached to them.
- Manga volume 1
- Aster - This flower is known for its ability to grow in poor soil, and is Shion's namesake.
- Camellia - These blossoms tend to drop their blooms all at once instead of petal by petal, reminiscent of a head being chopped off. For this reason, the Camellia can represent untimely death. This the flower Alice talks to frequently outside of her school.
- Crocus - A common flower for kids to grow in windowsills. Represents longing and youthful rejoicing. This is the plant Alice and Rin brought home from the zoo, that Rin later dropped from the balcony.
- Lily Magnolia - This flower represents a love of nature, and is Mokuren's namesake.
- Lily of the Valley - These flowers represent integrity, innocence, and the return of happiness. They are sweet-smelling and hardy.
- Peony - These large, bold flowers represent bashfulness in Japan.
- Plum Blossom - These flowers represent purity, loyalty, and honesty. They also carry a sense of youth and masculinity.
- Manga volume 3
- Currant - There is no traditional Japanese meaning to this non-native plant, despite how often they appear in the manga.
- Tulip - This flower symbolizes sympathy, charity and benevolence, and the obvious flower for Haruhiko's mom to bring to Tamura upon his release from the hospital. Tulips can also represent fame.
- Water Lily - This flower is a religious symbol in Buddhism, representing man's ability to achieve enlightenment. Despite this sacred significance, in Japan the water lily, most commonly the lotus variety, expresses conceit and false love. It is used to illustrate the virus as being divine punishment due to the scientists' own cold selfishness, as Daisuke mentions.
- Manga volume 5
- Baby's Breath - While there is no Japanese meaning for this imported flower, in English it connotes innocence.
- Begonia - This flower symbolizes unrequited love, and is Shukaido's namesake. It also represents kindness, politeness and care, which is also fitting for Shukaido's mild-mannered personality. In English, it can also imply "dark thoughts" which may also be appropriate to represent Shukaido.
- Carnation - This flower represents unabashed affection and a woman's love, and comes in a variety of colors, some of which have individual meanings. This is the flower Rin gives Alice, whie pretending it's from Haruhiko.
- Iris - This flower represents mysterious people and expectant news, perfect for representing Mrs. Yakushimaru's unexpected guest, Tamura.
- Chrysanthemum - This noble flower represents purity and nobility, making it the perfect background for Mrs. Yakushimaru's refined and imperious Kyoto-ite icyness as she dismisses Tamura.
- Manga volume 6
- Azalea - Azaleas are often considered conservative plants, expressing temperance and reserve. But they can also represent passion and enthusiasm.
- Boton - This flower is a variety of peony imported from China centuries ago, and represents wealth, honor, and bashfulness. It is a suitable backdrop to Mrs. Yakushimaru as she explains hers and Mikuro's difficult past to Tamura.
- Japanese Pagoda Tree - Called the Chinese Scholar tree in English, this tree often appears as the backdrop for its namesake, Enju.
- Gladiolus - This flower is used only in connection with the moon characters, indicating a sense of destiny, as well as strength, security, caution, and discretion.
- Lily - The backdrop of Mrs. Yakushimaru, white trumpet lilies, imply majesty, dignity and integrity, reinforcing her aura of polite intimidation as she speaks with Tamura at the temple. In general, all lilies imply a sense of refinement.
- Manga volume 9
- Daisy - Daisies convey a sense of innocence and inexperience. Hiwatari seems to enjoy using these to convey a sense of irony, since Shusuran and Enju are hardly naive little girls.
- Delphinium - A beautiful but poisonous plant that is native to Europe, these plants seem to be used with regard to the English meaning since there is no Japanese meaning. In general, they represent ardent attachment, levity and airiness. The pink variety also conveys a sense of fickleness, while the purple variety implies haughtiness.
- Orchid - The plants of this family represent the largest family in the flowering plant world, due to their adaptability – they can survive extreme conditions and so can be found on six of the seven continents of the world (Antarctica being the exception). Despite its refined grace, the orchid represents selfish beauty and cheap or shallow love in Japan. Two of our scientists take a cultivar of this flower as their namesake: Gyokuran and Shusuran.
- Rose - Roses represent love in Japan just as they do in the west, but of course, the colors each have their own individual meanings as well. Hiwatari seems to prefer using roses to symbolize melodrama rather than drama.
Please Save My Earth was written and drawn by Saki Hiwatari. The series was serialized by Hakusensha in the monthly shōjo (aimed at teenage girls) manga magazine Hana to Yume from 1987 to 1994. The serial installments were collected, without chapter divisions, in 21 tankōbon volumes. The series was later reissued in 12 bunkoban volumes in 1998. It is licensed in English in North America by Viz Media, with all volumes translated.
Please Save My Earth was adapted as an original video animation (OVA) directed by Kazuo Yamazaki and produced by Production I.G. The six-episode OVA anime covers roughly the first half of the manga storyline.
|This section requires expansion. (January 2009)|
Please Save My Earth Movie: From Alice to Rin-kun is a two-hour movie narrated by Alice, reminiscing on the events of the OVA as she is on her way to meet with Rin in a park. The "present day" scenes of Alice and Rin from the movie add scenes that were not present in the manga.
Please Save My Earth Music Image Video: The Passing of the Golden Age contains six music videos with footage not seen in the OVA and scenes taken from the manga, as well as a slightly different version of the OVA ending sequence, and the ending credits for the image videos.
These image videos were released with the movie on a single DVD in Japan entitled "Boku no Chikyuu wo Mamotte Vol.4" (Victor Entertainment, VIBF-77).
- Image video titles
- Prologue ~kiniro no toki nagarete~
- Mikadzuki no Shindai
- Yume no Sumika
- Moon Light Anthem ~Enju 1991~
- Tokete yuku Jikan
- Toki no Kioku
- Epilogue: Etude ~Tensei Gensou~
Of these, the two most significant contributions to the plot that was left out of the OVA are from Mikadzuki no Shindai and Ring.
Mikadzuki no Shindai contains a number of new scenes from Mokuren's past. In the OVA, only Shion's past gets any amount of screen time but Mokuren had just as much, if not more than he did in the manga. This image video will likely not make a whole lot of sense to someone who has not read the manga, but the scenes in it are meant to demonstrate that Mokuren's life up to the point when she goes to ZKK-101 has not been nearly as happy as the OVA makes viewers think.
The image video Ring, on the other hand, shows a very pared-down version of the end of the manga that was left out of the OVA. It explains why Rin needed Tokyo Tower and why was he was collecting the passwords of the other scientists. The title of this image video is another way to write "Rin" in English, as mentioned in the manga a few times.
Moon Light Anthem ~Enju 1991~ is an image video dedicated to Enju, depicting Issei's struggle to deal with Enju's incredibly strong feelings toward someone she cannot have.
Toki no Kioku is the ending animation from the OVA with a slight modification: Mokuren and Shion looking out across the sea near the end instead of Alice and Rin. This image video is the only occurrence of this version of the ending sequence; the movie uses the OVA version.
|This section requires expansion. (June 2008)|
As of 2006, over 15 million copies of Please Save My Earth volumes had sold in Japan, making it one of the best-selling shōjo manga ever.
Starting in volume 8 of the manga, a disclaimer appeared at the bottom of the first page of every compilation volume, stating that the story was entirely fictional. This was due to disturbing letters to Hiwatari received from people who were convinced that they had been part of the moon scientist's society (or even one of the moon scientists themselves) and had been reborn on Earth. These disclaimers have since appeared in her others works, most notably on the first pages of each volume of Global Garden.
- The Tale of the Bamboo Cutter - Japanese folktale with elements similar to Please Save My Earth
- Hiwatari, Saki (2004). Please Save My Earth. Volume 3. Viz Media. pp. 44–45. ISBN 1-59116-142-8.
- "Editors Comments" in Hiwatari, Saki (2004). Please Save My Earth. Volume 3. Viz Media. pp. 187–188. ISBN 1-59116-142-8.
- "Editor's Comments" in Hiwatari, Saki (2004). Please Save My Earth. Volume 3. Viz Media. p. 187. ISBN 1-59116-142-8.
- "Editor's Comments" in Hiwatari, Saki (2004). Please Save My Earth. Volume 5. Viz Media. pp. 199–200. ISBN 1-59116-268-8.
- "Editor's Comments" in Hiwatari, Saki (2004). Please Save My Earth. Volume 6. Viz Media. pp. 203–204. ISBN 1-59116-269-6.
- "Editor's Comments" in Hiwatari, Saki (2005). Please Save My Earth. Volume 8. Viz Media. p. 180. ISBN 1-59116-271-8.
- "Editor's Comments" in Hiwatari, Saki (2005). Please Save My Earth. Volume 9. Viz Media. pp. 177–178. ISBN 1-59116-272-6.
- "Editor's Comments" in Hiwatari, Saki (2005). Please Save My Earth. Volume 10. Viz Media. p. 179. ISBN 1-59116-273-4.
- "Editor's Comments" in Hiwatari, Saki (2005). Please Save My Earth. Volume 11. Viz Media. p. 179. ISBN 1-59116-846-5.
- "Editor's Comments" in Hiwatari, Saki (2006). Please Save My Earth. Volume 15. Viz Media. p. 185. ISBN 1-4215-0326-3.
- "Please Save My Earth Video (Out of Print September 2007)". Viz Media. Retrieved 2007-10-26.
- "Historic Shoujo Manga Circulation Numbers". ComiPress. 2006-05-24. Retrieved 2008-06-29.
- "1/4 Column Nonsense" (author notes) in Hiwatari, Saki (2004). Please Save My Earth. Volume 8. Viz. ISBN 1-59116-271-8.
- "Bisco Hatori: author, artist". Viz Media. Retrieved 2008-06-29. "She enjoys reading all kinds of manga, but she's especially fond of the sci-fi drama Please Save My Earth and Slam Dunk, a basketball classic."
- Official Viz Media manga website
- Please Save My Earth (manga) at Anime News Network's encyclopedia
- Please Save My Earth at Anime-Online
- Plot summaries of OVA episodes
- "Shojo Manga Pick of the Month" (J-pop.com review)