Toward the Terra

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Toward the Terra
Toward the Terra LD Cover.jpg
Cover of laserdisc release of Toward the Terra depicting Soldier SHIN (The Chosen Soldier of Soldier BLUE)
地球へ…
(Tera e...)
Genre Science Fiction, supernatural, psychological
Manga
Written by Keiko Takemiya
Published by Asahi Sonorama (original)
Square Enix (reprint)
English publisher
Demographic Shōnen
Magazine Gekkan Manga Shōnen
Original run January 1977May 1980
Volumes 3
Audio drama
Station NHK-FM
Original run July 23, 1979July 28, 1979
Anime film
Directed by Hideo Onchi
Written by Chiho Shioda
Hideo Onchi
Music by Masaru Sato
Studio Toei Animation
Licensed by
Released April 26, 1980
Runtime 115 minutes
Anime television series
Directed by Osamu Yamazaki
Written by Dai Satō
Hiroshi Ōnogi
Yutaka Izubuchi
Music by Yasuharu Takanashi
Studio Minamimachi Bugyōsho
Licensed by
Original network MBS (and other JNN stations)
English network
Original run April 7, 2007September 22, 2007
Episodes 24 (List of episodes)
Manga
Terra e... ~Keith of the Blue Light~
Written by Fumino Hayashi
Published by Square Enix
Demographic Shōnen
Magazine GFantasy
Original run May 2007March 2008
Volumes 2
Wikipe-tan face.svg Anime and Manga portal

Toward the Terra (Japanese: 地球(テラ)へ…, Hepburn: Tera e...) is a Japanese science fiction manga series by Keiko Takemiya. It was originally serialized in Asahi Sonorama's Gekkan Manga Shōnen magazine, between January 1977 and May 1980. In 1978, it won the very first Seiun Award for manga,[1] and in 1980 also won the Shogakukan Manga Award for shōnen/shōjo manga (along with Takemiya's Kaze to Ki no Uta).[2]

In 1980 it was adapted into an anime movie, produced by Toei Animation and directed by Hideo Onchi. In 2007, the manga was adapted into an anime television series, co-animated by Minamimachi Bugyōsho and Tokyo Kids, and produced by Aniplex, SKY Perfect Well Think, and Mainichi Broadcasting System. Directed by Osamu Yamazaki and featuring character designs by Nobuteru Yuki, it premiered in Japan on MBS-TBS's Saturday 6:00pm doroku time slot (previously occupied by other notable anime series such as Mobile Suit Gundam SEED, Fullmetal Alchemist and Blood+) on April 7, 2007, and ended on September 22, 2007, replacing the cancelled Bones series Tenpō Ibun Ayakashi Ayashi.

Plot

The story takes place in the distant future sometime after the 31st millennium where humanity exists under the rule of the political order controlled by supercomputers known as Superior Dominance and the carefully selected humans known as the Members Elite. Centuries before the story begins, the human race came to the conclusion that war and pollution rendered life on Earth unsustainable. Using warp travel the decision was made to leave a supercomputer Artificial Intelligence and caretaker humans behind and colonize distant stars.

Under the rule of Superior Dominance all humans are born in vitro and given to carefully selected parents. At the age of 14, all children are put through brainwashing where their memories are wiped by Superior Dominance and overwritten to produce functional adults. A race of advanced humans with psionic abilities called Mu (pronounced myuu, μ) has evolved, and the supercomputers that control Superior Dominance make every effort to exterminate them. Led by Soldier Blue and then Soldier Shin, the Mu make every effort to locate and rescue as many Mu children as possible before the children are discovered and eliminated. The Mu have only one wish, to return to what they see as their promised land, Terra.

The series spans a large number of years, jumping back and forth multiple times, from Soldier Shin's life on Ataraxia, the various events on Station E-1077, Soldier Shin's founding of a Mu colony on a habitable planet, the Superior Dominance war of extermination on the Mu, and finally to the Mu's return to Terra.

Manga

The manga series, written and illustrated by Keiko Takemiya, was serialized by Asahi Sonorama in Gekkan Manga Shōnen between January 1977 and May 1980. The chapters were collected in three bound volumes, which was reissued in August 1980 with the release of the movie. In 2007, on the day before the TV series began airing, the manga was reprinted by Japanese publisher Square Enix. In 2007, American publisher Vertical released all three volumes of the manga in North America under the title To Terra.... The series won two awards: the Seiun Award for best manga in 1978 and the Shogakukan Manga Award for best shōnen in 1979.[1][2]

Movie

In 1980, Toward the Terra was adapted into an animated movie, produced by Toei Animation and directed by Hideo Onchi. rightstuf released a hardsubbed version of the movie in North America. It was titled Toward the Terra, and appeared on VHS in 1994 and on laserdisc in 1995. At Anime Expo 2008, The Right Stuf International announced that its Nozomi Entertainment division had licensed the Toward the Terra film for the North American market.[3]

TV series

Toward the Terra was adapted into an animated TV series in 2007, co-animated by Minamimachi Bugyōsho and Tokyo Kids, and produced by Aniplex, SKY Perfect Well Think and Mainichi Broadcasting System. It was directed by Osamu Yamazaki, written by Satoru Nishizono and featured character and conceptual designs by Nobuteru Yuki (Vision of Escaflowne) and Yutaka Izubuchi (RahXephon) respectively. The first opening theme, spanning episodes 1-13, was "Endscape", performed by the band UVERworld, while the first ending theme is "Love is", performed by Miliyah Kato. These were replaced from episodes 14-24 onwards, with the second opening theme being "Jet Boy Jet Girl", performed by Hitomi Takahashi, and the second ending theme being "This Night", performed by Chemistry.

The series premiered in Japan on MBS-TBS's Saturday 6:00pm time slot on April 7, 2007. That time slot was previously occupied by other notable animated series, such as Mobile Suit Gundam Seed and Fullmetal Alchemist. It was replaced in this timeslot by Mobile Suit Gundam 00, which premiered in October 2007. The series was also aired in Japan on the BS network Animax, who also subsequently aired in its English language network in Southeast Asia and South Asia.

Episodes

No. Title Storyboard Screenplay Original air date
01 "Day of Awakening"
"Mezame no hi" (目覚めの日) 
Osamu Yamasaki[4] Satoru Nishizono[4] April 7, 2007
At the human colony of Ataraxia, Jomy prepares to leave his parents' house and take the adulthood exam. However, just as Jomy's memories are about to be wiped by the mother computer, Soldier Blue interferes. 
02 "Mu Ship"
"Myū no fune" (ミュウの船) 
Osamu Tsuruyama[5] Akemi Omode[5] April 14, 2007
Jomy reaches the Mu mother ship and learns of the true nature of the Mu. But the truth is too hard to handle for one who still believes himself to be human. Blaming the disruption of the adulthood exam on Soldier Blue, Jomy demands to be sent back. 
03 "Ataraxia"
"Atarakushia" (アタラクシア) 
Osamu Tsuruyama[6] Akemi Omode[6] April 21, 2007
Still unwilling to face the truth, Jomy returns to Ataraxia with the help of Leo. However, only a cold house devoid of signs of life awaits him. Soon both Jomy and Leo are captured and interrogated. 
04 "Return from Space"
"Sora kara no kikan" (宙からの帰還) 
Hidetoshi Yoshida[7] Miho Sakai[7] April 28, 2007
Having just awakened to his Mu powers, Jomy is going wild. As Soldier Blue goes out to help him, the Mu ship surfaces to draw away the human forces' attention. However, the battle does not look good. 
05 "Leap of Death"
"Shi no chōyaku" (死の跳躍) 
Osamu Tsuruyama[8] Akemi Omode,
Osamu Yamasaki[8]
May 5, 2007
Jomy has come to terms with his powers and undergoes training to control them. But time is running out as Ataraxia's forces discover the location of the Mu ship. In a desperate move, the Mu warps the ship from the planet's surface and starts their long journey towards Terra. 
06 "Station E-1077"
"Sutēshon E-1077" (ステーションE-1077) 
May 12, 2007
At Educational Station E-1077, an academy for students who have passed the adulthood exam, Keith and Sam meet. When a transport ship collides with a military vessel in the docks and becomes isolated, Keith and Sam stage a rescue mission. However, with the station's mother computer preparing a purge of the affected region, they are running out of time. 
07 "Rebellious Shiroei"
"Hangyaku no Shiroe" (反逆のシロエ) 
May 19, 2007
Four years after Sam enters E-1077, Shiroe, a top student with a rebellious attitude, arrives at the station. Shiroe, who is the same child whom Jomy tried to save previously, tries his best to challenge Keith. His verbal provocations eventually lead to Keith hitting him. Meanwhile Swena, tired of trying to win cold Keith's heart, decides to marry and leaves the station. 
08 "Trembling Heart"
"Furueru kokoro" (震える心) 
May 26, 2007
Keith is troubled by his own nature and Shiroe's words, and questions Sam's statement that he is different from others after all. Shiroe, while investigating Keith's origins, uncovers the secret of Mother Ilaiza's genetic breeding program. Jomy, as the leader of the Mu telepathically broadcasts a diplomatic message causing everyone except Keith revert to child-like behavior. 
09 "Unreaching Thought"
"Todokanu omoi" (届かぬ思い) 
June 02, 2007
Keith finds and shelters Shiroe, who is fleeing from a psychic exam. Shiroe is arrested while in Keith's care, but manages to stir doubts in Keith. The next day, much to Keith's surprise, everyone's memories of Shiroe and Jomy are erased. However, as Jomy attempts to communicate yet again, Shiroe flees the station and is shot down by Keith. 
10 "Star of Escape"
"Nogare no hoshi" (逃れの星) 
June 09, 2007
Eight years after Shiroe is killed by Keith, the Mu are still drifting through space in search of Terra. Karina brings up the topic of natural childbirth in conversation with Jomy and her friends, and Jomy decides that this is the future path for the Mu. When the ship comes across an abandoned human outpost named Silvester 7 in the Silvester system, Jomy proposes to stay there, renaming the planet to Nazca. Meanwhile, Swena is investigating the existence of Moby Dick, the rumored space whale, as well as the events that took place on Station E-1077 eight years ago. 
11 "Child of Nazca"
"Nasuka no ko" (ナスカの子) 
June 16, 2007
The Mu have adapted to life on Nazca. The younger generation treat it as their home, but the elders are still bent on finding Terra. Karina gives birth to Tony, her and Yui's natural child. Meanwhile Sam, brainwashed by the computers, arrives on Nazca and attempts to assassinate Jomy who fortunately survives but causing Sam to lose his memories and revert to child-like behavior. With all the recent events surrounding Nazca, Keith is sent out to investigate. 
12 "The Lonesome Mu"
"Kodoku Naru Myū" (孤独なるミュウ) 
June 23, 2007
Three years after settling on Nazca, Yui is killed in an accident. The old and the new generation are split more than ever about the future of Nazca and the quest to return to Terra, with the young Mu refusing to work on the ship. Meanwhile, Keith begins his journey to Silvester 7 to investigate the possible appearance of the Mu
13 "What Hides On the Planet"
"Hoshi ni Hisomu Mono" (星に潜むもの) 
June 30, 2007
Jomy is optimistic about the future of the Mu on Nazca, but Physis feels the "winds of misfortune" coming to the planet. Keith arrives and is shot down, captured, and interrogated by the Mu while his inexperienced crew abandons him and runs away. To Physis' surprise, Keith has the same vision of Terra that she does, although they couldn't find out more due to his strong mental block. 
14 "Identical Memories"
"Onaji Kioku" (同じ記憶) 
July 7, 2007
Jomy continues to interrogate Keith but ultimately fails. Tony attempts to take Keith's life using his power but Keith manages to throw a broken shard at Tony and immobilizes him. Meanwhile Soldier Blue awakens from his long sleep while Matsuka flies to rescue Keith from capture. Episode ends with Keith meeting with Physis. 
15 "Omen of Change"
"Hendō no Yochō" (変動の予兆) 
July 14, 2007
Tony, along with Physis, is taken hostage by Keith. Karina goes berserk believing her son is dead and unleashes powers that damage sections of the ship. She is finally calmed by Jomy but in the end dies, due to her overexerting her powers. Keith uses the two hostages to slip by Soldier Blue and is taken home by Matsuka. Keith then contacts the military base and plans to return to eliminate the Mu
16 "Red Eyes, Blue Planet"
"Akai Hitomi, Aoi Hoshi" (赤い瞳 蒼い星) 
July 21, 2007
Tony and other children on Nazca are suddenly in a state of hibernation now and the doctor is unable to bring them out of it. Keith assembles a crew and heads back to Nazca. A massive planetary scale weapon called the Meggido is introduced and the Members Elite plans to use this to eradicate the Mu's planet. The Meggido fires at Nazca and Soldier Blue teleports out of the ship to put up a powerful psion shield to stop it. 
17 "Eternity and the Heat Haze"
"Eien to Kagerō to" (永遠と陽炎と) 
July 28, 2007
Soldier Blue's shield isn't enough to stop the Meggido. Immediately, Soldier Shin (Jomy) and the seven other hibernating children teleports to the scene and reinforces the shield. The majority of the beam from the Meggido is deflected but a portion still manages to damage the planet and kill the Mu taking shelter there. Soldier Blue uses his last ounce of strength and destroys the Meggido while Jomy gathers other Mu and warps out in the Shangri-la. In that act, Soldier Blue dies and Jomy takes his place as the leader of the Mu. Jomy orders the Mu to return to Artemisia to destroy the system that controls humans and to liberate all that reside in it. 
18 "Reunion on Artemisia"
"Saikai no Arutemeshia" (再会のアルテメシア) 
August 4, 2007
The seven blue-type children, including Tony, are now fully grown and are used as deadly weapons against the humans that get in the Mu's way. Due to their power and ruthless antics, the new blue-types are feared and a generation clash emerges. Jomy recognizes this but chooses to ignore it to reach the goal ahead, Artemisia. Keith, Swena and Sam are reunited and Swena hands over Shiroe's Peter Pan book. Inside the book Keith discovers a chip with a visual recording of his own birthplace. Keith decides to return to Educational Station E-1077 while Jomy and the Mu obliterate the humans' defenses and reach Artemisia. 
19 "Respective places"
"Sorezore no Basho" (それぞれの場所) 
August 11, 2007
Keith and Physis discover the shocking truth that they both were artificially created through a process of genetic manipulation and a product of many failed experiments. It becomes evident that Physis is not a Mu, but an artificially created human given powers by Soldier Blue in the past. Jomy returns to the amusement park where he was supposed to have undergo his adulthood exam by Terras #5 and completely destroys Terras #5 this time. Keith puts Mother Iliza and Educational Station E-1077 on a self-destruct sequence and a new computer system called Grand Mother is reinstated. With Terras #5's computer system destroyed and the path to Terra cleared, Jomy decides to venture there along with the other Mu. 
20 "The Night Before the Decisive Battle"
"Kessen Zen'ya" (決戦前夜) 
August 18, 2007
With the help of Grand Mother, Keith quickly rises to become the leader of the human race and announces his plan to exterminate the Mu. A plan to ambush the Mu spaceship with a vast army before they reach Terra is immediately put in place. 
21 "Stardust Memory"
"Hoshikuzu no Kioku" (星屑の記憶) 
September 1, 2007
On the way to Terra the Mu encounter a large human army near Jupiter. War and bloodshed ensues with lives lost on both sides. The human army is equipped with special spacecraft immune to the Mu's psionic powers and as a result three of the blue-type Mu are killed. Tony who was struck with grief unleashes a large psionic wave that pulverizes a large section of the human army. Keith then decides to use the Mu captured on Artemisia as hostages and this angers Tony even further. 
22 "Fading Life"
"Kureru Inochi" (暮れる命) 
September 8, 2007
Tony decides to take matters into his own hands and tries to assassinate Keith. He uses telekinesis to suffocate Keith but it ends prematurely when Matsuka jumps into the scene. Tony tries to deal the finishing blow but instead kills Matsuka who jumps to shield an unconscious Keith. At that moment, reinforcements arrive and Tony was forced to retreat. 
23 "Toward Earth"
"Chikyū e" (地球へ) 
September 15, 2007
Due to Jomy's persuassion, Keith requests a meeting between the higher ups of both sides. Jomy and the Mu warp close to Earth only to find a planet that is completely ruined and does not support life. What was awaiting the Mu was an ambush consisting of 6 Meggido units ready to fire. The firing of the Meggido weapons were stopped by Keith himself who decides to have talks with the Mu. The humans and Mu argue and bicker in a conference until Keith offers to take Jomy to Grand Mother. They both go down towards the center of the planet where Grand Mother awaits. 
24 "Terra's green hills"
"Tera no Midori no Oka" (地球の緑の丘) 
September 22, 2007
Swena broadcasts Keith's message to humanity about the truth behind Grand Mother's ideals. The final truth about the Mu genes is revealed: before the creation of SD system, scientists discovered the mutant Mu genes and arguments ensued as to whethere they were only a flick of mutation or the next phase of revolution. Unable to decide, the SD system was programmed to leave Mu genes intact in birth control process, only to carry out the extermination when the gene carrier reached adulthood; the purpose was to check whether they could survive the stress and became the next phase of revolution. As such, the Mu survived, confirming their superiority; the only problem being that the Grand Mother system has flawed programming and cannot accept the Mu. Keith broadcast this revelation for all humans to see, urging them to finally take over the decision and not relying on SD system any longer, while choosing to maintain the system for the sake of controlling human as a bet on human's future. Acknowledging Keith's decision, Grand Mother's programming moved to phase 4: eliminate Mu factor in birth progress, and order Keith to kill Jomy. Keith & Jomy decide to fight Grand Mother and are fatally wounded. Tony is chosen by Jomy to destroy the Meggidos pointed at Terra and to stand up as the next Soldier. Keith calls his subordinates to also destroy the Meggido units along with the Mu. The Meggido units are destroyed with the help of General Murdock who rams into it with his ship and Terra is saved from obliteration. Humans across the galaxy are shown rebelling against the SD system, and Tony steps up as the next leader of the Mu to bring humans and Mu together. The final scene after the credits shows a reborn Earth, as both the humans and Mu had hoped it would become. Two boys who resemble younger versions of Jomy and Keith meet each other for the first time, only to shed tears upon seeing each other, and not knowing why. 

References

  1. ^ a b 日本SFファングループ連合会議:星雲賞リスト (in Japanese). Retrieved 2008-10-04. 
  2. ^ a b 小学館漫画賞:歴代受賞者 (in Japanese). Shogakukan. Retrieved 2007-08-19. 
  3. ^ Right Stuf Adds Gakuen Alice, Reissues First Terra e - Anime News Network
  4. ^ a b http://www.sonymusic.co.jp/Animation/terra/story/01.html
  5. ^ a b http://www.terra-e.com/story/02.html
  6. ^ a b http://www.terra-e.com/story/03.html
  7. ^ a b http://www.terra-e.com/story/04.html
  8. ^ a b http://www.terra-e.com/story/05.html

External links

  • Official website of anime television series (in Japanese)
  • Movie review at SciFi.com
  • Right Stuf/Nozomi's Official Toward the Terra Film Website
  • Toward the Terra (TV) (anime) at Anime News Network's encyclopedia
  • Toward the Terra (movie) (anime) at Anime News Network's encyclopedia
  • To Terra... (manga) at Anime News Network's encyclopedia
  • Toward the Terra (1980) on IMDb
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