Astra Lost in Space
|Astra Lost in Space|
(Kanata no Asutora)
|Written by||Kenta Shinohara|
|Original run||May 9, 2016 – December 30, 2017|
|Anime television series|
|Directed by||Masaomi Andō|
|Written by||Norimitsu Kaihō|
|Music by||Masaru Yokoyama|
|Original network||AT-X, Tokyo MX, TVA, KBS, SUN, BS11|
|Original run||July 3, 2019 – September 18, 2019|
Astra Lost in Space (Japanese: 彼方のアストラ, Hepburn: Kanata no Asutora) is a Japanese manga series by Kenta Shinohara. It was serialized online between May 2016 and December 2017 via Shueisha's Shōnen Jump+ website/app. It was collected in five tankōbon volumes. The manga is published in English by Viz Media. An anime television series adaptation by Lerche aired from July to September 2019.
In 2063, space travel has become possible and commercially viable; a group of students from Caird High School departs to the nearby planet of McPa for their Planetary Camp. Soon after the group arrives on the planet, the nine children encounter a mysterious and unforeseen intelligent sphere of light; it attacks them, transporting them into the distant depths of space. Floating in orbit around an unknown planet, they discover an old abandoned spacecraft nearby. Finding it in working order, they resolve to use the ship to return home. To do so, they must cross the 5,012-light-year gulf of space separating them from home by visiting alien planets harboring life to replenish and manage their limited resources.
The long and dangerous journey home aboard their vessel, which they name Astra, brings with it new character revelations, strengthening the bonds they share, and the eventual realization that the stakes of their journey are far higher than any of them could ever have realized.
- Kanata Hoshijima (カナタ・ホシジマ, Hoshijima Kanata)
- Voiced by: Yūsuke Kobayashi (drama CD), Yoshimasa Hosoya (anime) (Japanese); Josh Grelle (English)
- An optimistic guy with good athletic ability and captain in the Astra ship. While he has interest about space thanks to his now-deceased teacher, his father forced him to take a part in athletic activity. His lifelong dream is to be able to explore outer space while captaining his own ship. Later on, he loses his right arm as a result of an altercation with Charce. At the end of the series, he proposes marriage to Aries.
- Aries Spring (アリエス・スプリング, Ariesu Supuringu)
- Voiced by: Ayaka Suwa (drama CD), Inori Minase (anime) (Japanese); Megan Shipman (English)
- Aries sometimes acts like an airhead and sometimes has flashes of inspiration. She also has an eidetic memory. While her eyes are both green, her left eye color is slightly pale compared to the right one. She transferred to the school only a month before the trip.
- Luca Esposito (ルカ・エスポジト, Ruka Esupojito)
- Voiced by: Ayumu Murase (drama CD), Risae Matsuda (anime) (Japanese); Ciaran Strange (English)
- A naturally curious boy and a talented engineer capable of repairing any damage to the Astra. His father Marco is a controversial senator. Later it turns out that Luca is intersex, having an androgynous body with sexual characteristics of both sexes. Although he identifies himself as a boy, Luca notes that he does not really consider himself a man or a woman, and his identity can change.
- Charce Lacroix (シャルス・ラクロワ, Sharusu Rakurowa)
- Voiced by: Sōichirō Hoshi (drama CD), Nobunaga Shimazaki (anime) (Japanese); Jason Liebrecht (English)
- A handsome, intelligent student botanist who uses his cooking and botany skills to ensure the crew is properly fed. Acts as Kanata's first mate. Charce is in reality actually a member of the royal family of Vixia, sent to assassinate everyone utilizing a wormhole. However, upon meeting Aries and noticing her unique traits, he became convinced that she was a clone of his childhood friend, Seira, and so changed his plan to bring her back alive. At the end of the series, he becomes King of Vixia and orders the tearing down of its capital's walls.
- Quitterie Raffaëlli (キトリー・ラファエリ, Kitorī Rafaeri)
- Voiced by: Lynn (drama CD), Tomoyo Kurosawa (anime) (Japanese); Sakyiwaa Baah (English)
- A rich heiress who is the daughter of a famous doctor. She finds it difficult to trust other people besides Zack, who is her childhood friend. She received very little attention from her mother. As a teenager during the 113 days in space she was the Astra's ship "doctor". At the end of the series, she and Zack get married.
- Zack Walker (ザック・ウォーカー, Zakku Wōkā)
- Voiced by: Daiki Hamano (drama CD), Shunsuke Takeuchi (anime) (Japanese); Aaron Roberts (English)
- A cool and intelligent student who seeks to become a space explorer and has a space pilot license, making him the Astra's main pilot. His father works in the bio-technology industry who is currently working on a project with Quitterie's mother, thus making Quitterie and him childhood friends. His dream is to pilot his own ship with Kanata captaining.
- Funicia Raffaëlli (フニシア・ラファエリ, Funishia Rafaeri)
- Voiced by: Aimi Tanaka (drama CD), Hina Kino (anime) (Japanese); Dani Chambers (English)
- Quitterie's adopted sister, who was adopted into the family after the death of her parents. She is a cheerful, positive girl who wants to get along with Quitterie. She carries around a puppet named Beego with her.
- Ulgar Zweig (ウルガー・ツヴァイク, Urugā Tsuvaiku)
- Voiced by: Kyousuke Kitayama (drama CD), Kōki Uchiyama (anime) (Japanese); Christopher Dontrell Piper (English)
- A quiet, antisocial, but highly intelligent boy who does not get along well with the rest of the crew. His father is the vice-principal of Caird High. He is good at handling a gun. His late older brother was a freelance journalist who stumbled upon a secret he should not have which resulted in his death, leading Ulgar to despise and hold revenge against Marco Esposito. At the end of the series he follows his brother's footsteps, becomes a freelance journalist.
- Yun-Hua Lu (ユンファ・ルー, Yunfa Rū)
- Voiced by: Saori Hayami (anime) (Japanese); Dawn M. Bennett (English)
- A shy, quiet girl who constantly apologizes for everything she does as a result of being emotionally suppressed by her mother, Lucy Lum, a world famous singer. Yun-Hua has a great singing voice, but her mother constantly berated her and told her she should not bring attention to herself, so she distanced herself as much as possible. At the end of the series, she becomes a popular singer herself.
- Paulina Levinskaya (ポリーナ・リヴィンスカヤ, Porīna Rivinsukaya)
- Voiced by: Hitomi Nabatame (anime) (Japanese); Elizabeth Maxwell (English)
- A woman whom the crew of the Astra discovers has been in cryosleep for 12 years on a ship of a similar but older model than the Astra. Her allies were killed, leaving her the only survivor of her crew. They were members of a planetary exploration team looking for other habitable planets. At the end of the series she becomes a teacher at Funicia's school.
Astra Lost in Space, written and illustrated by Kenta Shinohara, was serialized on Shueisha's digital magazine app and website Shōnen Jump+ from May 9, 2016 to December 30, 2017. Shueisha collected its chapters in five tankōbon volumes, released from July 4, 2016 to February 2, 2018.
|No.||Original release date||Original ISBN||English release date||English ISBN|
|1||July 4, 2016||978-4-08-880843-7||December 5, 2017||978-1-4215-9694-5|
|2||November 4, 2016||978-4-08-880869-7||March 6, 2018||978-1-4215-9695-2|
|3||April 4, 2017||978-4-08-881065-2||June 5, 2018||978-1-4215-9696-9|
|4||August 4, 2017||978-4-08-881144-4||September 4, 2018||978-1-4215-9697-6|
|5||February 2, 2018||978-4-08-881314-1||December 4, 2018||978-1-4215-9698-3|
An anime television series adaptation was announced on February 5, 2019. The series is animated by Lerche and directed by Masaomi Andō, with Norimitsu Kaihō handling series composition, and Keiko Kurosawa designing the characters. Masaru Yokoyama and Nobuaki Nobusawa are composing the series' music. It aired from July 3 to September 18, 2019 on AT-X, Tokyo MX, TVA, KBS, SUN, and BS11. The first and last episodes aired as one-hour specials. Nonoc performed the series' opening theme song "star*frost", while the ending theme, "Glow at the Velocity of Light", was performed by Riko Azuna. Funimation has licensed the series in North America and the British Isles, and is streaming the series in both subtitled and dubbed formats.
|No.||Title [a]||Original air date|
|1||"Planet Camp"||July 3, 2019|
|On her way to the planetary camp, Aries Spring has her bag snatched at the spaceport, but fellow student Kanata Hoshijima stops him. Nine students from Caird High School arrive at the planet McPa for their planetary camp. Not long after setting foot, a mysterious sphere appears out of nowhere and swallows up the students. They end up adrift in space where they find an abandoned spaceship. Everybody except Aries makes it on board. At the risk of running out of fuel and also ending up lost in space, Kanata goes out and rescues Aries. Kanata runs out of fuel, but the other students form a human ladder to rescue Kanata and Aries. With everybody safely on board the spaceship, the students introduce themselves to each other, and Zack Walker learns that the sphere transported them 5012 light years away from home. As paranoia sets in realizing that the trip is impossible with the limited resources they have, the mood changes when Kanata inspires them to have hope, telling them how he was in a similar situation in a hiking trip where his teacher died in an accident and he had to help his classmates survive seven days in the wilderness. In addition, Zack finds planets the students can resupply on and a route to get back. The students unanimously nominate Kanata as the captain and name the spaceship the Astra after seeing the phrase Per Aspera ad Astra on a plaque inside the spaceship.|
|2||"Wilderness"||July 10, 2019|
|The students arrive at the first resupplying stop, the wilderness planet Vilavurs. The students encounter strange forms of wildlife that includes parachute plants and trampoline trees. As the students go around obtaining resources for the next leg of the trip, they encounter the mysterious sphere again, but this time managing to elude it. Kanata begins eating impulsively, while Quitterie becomes upset at the situation remembering that she came from a wealthy family that did not love her. Quitterie also turns against her little sister Funicia due to her being adopted into the family, much to the latter's sorrow. As night falls, Funicia becomes trapped when a trampoline tree suddenly rises and a winged beast snatches her away. Despite the dangers, Kanata jumps onto the tree and grabs a javelin Luca left on one of the trees to save Funicia. Quitterie and Funicia reconcile their differences and Kanata reveals that he was trained to be an world class athlete by his father. With the students ready to leave Vilavurs, Zack confides to Kanata that he found out the Astra's communications system was sabotaged, with the culprit likely being somebody in the group.|
|3||"Meteor"||July 17, 2019|
|As the Astra travels to the next resupplying stop, Shummoor, Kanata secretly tries to figure out who the saboteur is, but does not know enough about everybody to make a determination. When Funicia recounts how a mysterious man in sunglasses arranged for her adoption into Quitterie's family, Kanata theorizes that somebody wants them all killed and warns everybody about the possible saboteur hiding among them. Ulgar reveals that he is the son of their school's vice principal, which puts the most suspicion on him. However, the ship is suddenly struck by micrometeorites, breaching the hull and disabling the main power supply. Without power, the Astra is caught in Shummoor's gravity and begins plummeting in an uncontrolled descent. The group moves frantically to seal the holes and connect the ship's gravity controller to a backup generator. However, the gravity controller's safety mechanism kicks in when it detects a small flying alien creature, forcing Ulgar to shoot it with a glue gun. With power restored, Zack is barely able to land the Astra safely. It is later revealed that Ulgar secretly possesses a real handgun.|
|4||"Star of Hope"||July 24, 2019|
|In light of their combined effort to prevent the Astra from crashing, the students conclude that the saboteur has a desire for survival as well and decide not to actively investigate for the time being. They land on Shummoor and begin foraging for food and encounter large, friendly bird-like aliens they dub Gruppies. Unfortunately, they discover that most of the edible plants on Shummoor spoil extremely quickly making them unsuitable for long term storage, and the Gruppies are inedible, meaning they do not have enough food supplies for the next leg of the trip. Meanwhile, Yun-Hua deserts the ship, telling the crew to leave her behind. Kanata goes out to search for her and finds her. Yun-Hua reveals that her mother emotionally abused her and raised her into believing it was better to avoid the attention of others. At that moment, the large mushrooms scattered around the planet begin releasing poisonous spores, infecting all of the students except Kanata and Yun-Hua, who were wearing their spacesuits. Charce tells them that there should be an antidote mushroom to counter the poison, and Kanata and Yun-Hua remember feeding a sick Gruppie a yellow mushroom that cured it. As Kanata gathers the antidote mushrooms, Yun-Hua begins to sing to calm her sick friends thanks to Kanata encouraging her to pursue her dream to be a singer. Kanata brings the antidote mushrooms back, curing his friends while Yun-Hua gains more self confidence.|
|5||"Paradise"||July 31, 2019|
|After the group recovers, they credit Yun-Hua’s singing for helping keep them alive, and find out that she is the daughter of the famous singer Lucy Lum. To symbolize her growth, Yun-Hua has her hair cut short. They then manage to find a stable food source and leave Shummoor. Meanwhile, back home, the authorities have all but given up on finding the missing students after an exhaustive search on McPa. The parents of the missing students meet and consider whether they should declare their children legally dead. Only Aries' mom is genuinely concerned while the other parents are quick to accept the decision to stop the search. The man in sunglasses that Funicia talked about earlier is silently sitting off to the side of the room. The only parent missing is Luca's father, Marco, who is a powerful and controversial government official. Back in space, the group has landed on the oceanic world of Arispade, which they consider a paradise. Food is plentiful and Charce discovers all life on the planet reproduces via parthenogenesis. Quitterie starts teasing Aries about her feelings for Kanata, convincing her to try and confess to him. However, Kanata misunderstands Aries' words, angering her. Luca and Ulgar go fishing, with Luca trying to get Ulgar to open up, though Ulgar is shocked to learn the identity of Luca's father. Later that evening, the group has a picnic to celebrate their last night on Arispade when Ulgar appears with his gun and holds Luca at gunpoint.|
|6||"Secret"||August 7, 2019|
|Ulgar explains to everybody that he believes his older brother was murdered by Marco for investigating his corruption. As revenge, he seeks to kill Luca, who is Marco's eldest son and apparent heir. Luca then reveals that he is not Marco's heir due to being Intersex, having been born with both male and female biology. In addition, he had been secretly adopted into Esposito family before his condition was discovered, and was all but disowned when his younger brother was born. Ulgar realizes Luca is an outcast from his family just like him and stands down. Suddenly, the island is hit by a quake followed shortly by a tsunami. Most of the group manages to make it on to the Astra safely, but Ulgar and Luca are washed away. Ulgar attempts to sacrifice himself to ensure Luca's safety, but they both end up being rescued by Kanata. After they leave Arispade, Ulgar apologizes to Luca and vows to return home alive to investigate his brother's death. Zack then brings up the possibility that Ulgar's brother may have uncovered a much deeper conspiracy than government corruption, which may be why they've all been targeted. Ulgar decides he will become a journalist like his brother and Kanata allows Ulgar to keep possession of the gun since he is the only person who knows how to use it. Later on, Aries gets into a conversation with Charce, and she notices an inconsistency in his story when she does not remember seeing him in the biology class he claimed to attend. The group confronts Charce, suspecting he is hiding something from them.|
|7||"Past"||August 14, 2019|
|Charce reveals that like Aries, he is also a transfer student who arrived after Aries. He admits that he did not reveal this earlier since he did not want to talk about his past, since he is from the Vixia Royal Quarter, the only nation on their home planet that is still ruled by nobility. In the past, he had befriended a commoner girl named Seira and smuggled her into the area reserved only for nobles. When she was caught by a guard, Seira resisted and was pushed off a building, falling into a coma due her injuries. Some time later, Seira's family left Vixia, taking her with them. Charce left as well, swearing to learn biology so he could hopefully find and heal Seira some day. The rest of the group are touched by Charce's tragic story, and Charce remarks that Aries reminds him of Seira. Afterward, the group reaches the next planet, Icriss. However, Icriss' rotation is perfectly in synch with its orbit around its sun, meaning one side is permanently scorching hot while the other side is permanently freezing cold, meaning the only safe place to forage is the region directly between both extremes. Unfortunately, as they attempt to find a landing spot, the Astra is attacked by a massive carnivorous plant, resulting in the Astra suffering significant damage that makes reaching space impossible. Zack points out they do not have the parts or resources to repair the damage, so they will have to accept living on Icriss as their new home. Later, Charce leads a foraging party and discovers a second ship similar to the Astra. The group examines the ship, noting it is heavily damaged and seemingly abandoned. Zack then realizes there is somebody preserved in the ship's hibernation pod for the past 12 years, and the group opens it to reveal a young woman inside.|
|8||"Lost and Found"||August 21, 2019|
|The group brings the woman back to the Astra, where she tells them that she is Paulina Livinskaya, and an astronaut from the ship Ark VI. The Ark VI had originally been sent out to find worlds suitable for human habitation, but was forced to crash land on Icriss. The rest of the crew went out to explore the planet but never returned, forcing her to use the hibernation pod to survive. Aries then gets the idea that since the Astra and Ark VI are modular and of the same ship type, they can switch out Astra's damaged reactor section with the Ark VI's intact one. Meanwhile, Yun-Hua tells Paulina that she has been asleep for 12 years and it is now 2063. Paulina panics upon learning it is 2063, but does not reveal why. The ship repairs are a success and the group returns to foraging for food. Zack and Quitterie have a quiet moment together. Zack reveals he does not want to be like his father, who has become cold and uncaring due to his memory transplant research, and he plans on becoming the pilot for Kanata's future spaceship. Quitterie finally admits her desire to marry Zack, and he reminds her they already promised to marry when they were children. Before the group leaves Icriss, they head out to investigate the fate of Paulina's crew and discover they were eaten by carnivorous plants hidden underground. The group finally leaves Icriss and plan to hold a party for Paulina. Quitterie notices her and Funicia's blood types are an exact match, which is a highly unlikely coincidence for adopted siblings. Zack offers to perform a DNA test and is shocked to discover Quitterie and Funicia are genetically identical, which he privately reveals to Kanata.|
|9||"Revelation"||August 28, 2019|
|Zack and Kanata reveal to the whole crew that Funicia and Qutterie are clones. Together the crew forms the theory that they all, except for Aries, are clones. Younger replacements for their parents, who will transfer their memories with technology developed by Zack's father. Meanwhile, all the parents, except for Aries' and Charce's are seen meeting and lamenting how the recently introduced Genome Control Act would expose their children as clones, which is why they stranded them in space to ensure their bodies would never be found. Back on the Astra, everyone is distraught by this revelation but Kanata reassures them by claiming that even if their whole life was a lie, this trip has turned them into a family, and now they have more reason to return, to bring their parents to justice. Kanata then takes time to approach the crew members individually to see how they are doing, and most of them have found closure regarding their family situations. Zack and Quitterie decide to get married, announcing their engagement to the whole crew. Zack later restores the space telescope using parts from the Ark VI and is able to bring up an image of their home planet. While the crew is celebrating, Paulina enters the bridge and becomes confused at the physical differences between Earth and the planet they're traveling to. When the crew shows no knowledge of a planet named Earth, Paulina becomes hysterical, prompting the crew to reveal that their home planet is called Astra.|
|10||"Culprit"||September 4, 2019|
|Paulina and the group talk with each other, and discover that Earth and Astra both had the same history up until 1962, where in Astra's history the Cuban Missile Crisis caused World War III, spurring the survivors to form a unified world government. Paulina then explains that on Earth, scientists discovered that an asteroid would strike the planet in 2057. The Ark ships were sent out to scout for habitable planets, and the entire population would evacuate through the use of artificial wormholes. The group then realizes they were brought to what was left of Earth through one of these wormholes, where they came across the Ark XII, which had been left behind and never used. Paulina theorizes that Earth's population successfully settled on Astra, but covered up their own history for some reason. Aries suggests that rather than thinking on it too much, they should focus on getting home first. They arrive at the last planet, Galem. While foraging, Kanata encounters another wormhole and is narrowly able to escape. Realizing that the traitor will most likely get rid of them on Galem and take the last leg of the trip home themselves, Kanata decides to confront the traitor, who he has already figured out. He privately approaches Zack and Charce to stage an ambush on Ulgar, but it is in fact a ploy to trick Charce into exposing himself as the traitor. Kanata explains that the traitor would have had to be the last person to be sucked into the wormhole, to ensure the entire group is eliminated. Charce admits his role, and reveals that he knew he was a clone from the start and that his original is Noah Vix, the current king of Vixia.|
|11||"Confession"||September 11, 2019|
|Charce reveals that he was originally supposed to be Noah's spare body and was raised since birth to believe that was his only purpose in life. When the Genome Control Act was passed, he was assigned the mission to eliminate the other clones. Kanata remains skeptical, pointing out how Charce always deactivated the wormhole before it could suck anybody in. Charce explains that he stopped his attempts because he did not want to harm Aries, who he reveals to be Seira's clone, and that Seira was Noah's daughter, the princess of Vixia. He reveals his true past, where Seira helped raise him but was opposed to cloning project, and Aries was born without her knowledge. Unwilling to subject Aries to a doomed fate, Seira secretly had Aries' surrogate mother smuggle her out of Vixia to live a normal life. Seira, however, is later pushed off a cliff and killed by an assassin. With Seira's death, Charce felt his mission was his only purpose in life. Kanata remains unconvinced, and points out how much Charce enjoyed interacting with everybody, and that their friendship is genuine. The other students also try to convince Charce he does not have to be beholden to Noah's wishes. Overcome with guilt, Charce attempts to commit suicide by using a backup wormhole controller and creating a wormhole between himself and everybody else. Kanata charges straight at the wormhole, but uses his anti-gravity shoes to jump over it and tackle Charce. Kanata convinces Charce to stop his suicide attempt, but not before the wormhole is so close that he loses his right arm above the elbow in the process. This shocks Charce back to his senses, and Kanata reminds him of the promise he made earlier of how he would be Kanata's second in command on his future spaceship. One of the final scenes shows Kanata's arm floating above Earth. Qutterie is able to stop the bleeding and Charce helps Kanata back to the Astra.|
|12||"Friend-Ship"||September 18, 2019|
Despite Charce's actions, Kanata and the rest of the group still accept Charce as one of their own, convincing him to live for himself. After they forage enough food to leave Galem and Kanata has had some time to rest with Aries taking care of him, Charce tells everybody about the truth of Astra and Vixia. In the past, the nations of Earth developed wormhole technology to evacuate the population to Astra. However, when the plan was revealed to the public, war immediately broke out as different nations attempted to fight over land on Astra and the wormholes were misused as weapons. A single world government was finally formed to bring about peace, but not after half the population of Earth/Astra was killed. As a result, the world government decided to destroy all of the wormholes to prevent them from ever being used again. They also decided to manipulate history so that later generations would be unaware of the wormhole technology that brought them to Astra. In reality, 100 years had passed since Earth was destroyed, making the true year 2163. The students decide to tell all of Astra the truth. However, their originals and the government remain obstacles to their return. Kanata has the Astra briefly stop above McPa so they can get into the communications system so Aries can send a message containing their entire story and pictures of the planets they visited to her "mother", Emma, who the group knows they can trust with instructions to contact a police officer that worked with Ulgar's brother. As they return to Astra, they are greeted by a fleet of warships who welcome them home and inform them that their originals have been arrested for illegal cloning and attempted murder. The man, who is the younger brother of the King of Vixia, responsible for Seira's assassination and the transfer of Aries to Team B5 is also arrested. After their return, the group become celebrities overnight. Kanata and Charce convince the government to reveal the truth about Earth, with Kanata managing to defuse the resulting public uproar by writing a bestselling book recounting his experiences during his journey home. Charce becomes the new king of Vixia but immediately gave up all political power, opens Vixia's borders, and releases wormhole technology to the public. As a relic of the old Earth era, the Astra is put in a museum. All the kids, except for Funicia, finally graduated from high school.Seven years later, Ulgar has become a journalist, Paulina is a teacher at Caird High School, and Funicia is now in high school. Aries, Quitterie, and Luca attend Yun-Hua’s concert, where Aries reveals Kanata finally proposed to her for marriage. Luca looks and dresses more like a woman. Quitterie and Charce have successful modeling careers. Meanwhile, Kanata has used his fortune to buy the Astra as well as a new prosthetic arm designed by Zack. Together with Zack and Charce, they head off into space to explore new worlds to place wormholes on. When asked why he came, Charce says he is keeping his promise.
The manga was ranked third in the 2019 edition of Takarajimasha's Kono Manga ga Sugoi! guidebook and won the twelfth Manga Taishō Awards. The anime won "Best Media" at the 51st Seiun Award during the 59th Nihon SF Taikai.
Michele Liu of Anime News Network said that the series is "unique" because Luca is a main character who is born intersex rather than "altered by sci-fi space diseases or external influence," with Liu also describing Luca as bisexual.
- All English titles are taken from Funimation.
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