Toward the Terra


Toward the Terra

Infobox animanga/Header
name = Toward the Terra


caption = Cover of laserdisc release of "Toward the Terra" depicting Soldier Blue
ja_name = 地球へ…
ja_name_trans = Terra e...
genre = Science Fiction, Supernatural, Drama, Psychological
Infobox animanga/Manga
author = Keiko Takemiya
publisher = flagicon|Japan Asahi Sonorama (original) flagicon|Japan Square Enix (reprint)
publisher_en = flagicon|USA Vertical Inc.
demographic = Shōnen
magazine = flagicon|Japan Gekkan Manga Shōnen
first = January 1977
last = May 1980
volumes = 3
Infobox animanga/Manga
title = Terra e... ~Keith of the Blue Light~
author = Fumino Hayashi
publisher = flagicon|Japan Square Enix
demographic = Shōnen
magazine = flagicon|Japan GFantasy
first = May 2007
last = ongoing
volumes = Ongoing
Infobox animanga/Other
title = Radio Drama
content =
* Station: NHK-FM
* Program: NHK-FM Summer Special Edition Stereo Story Comic
* Broadcast: July 23 1979 - July 28 1979
Infobox animanga/Movie
director = Hideo Onchi
studio = Toei Animation
licensor = flagicon|Canada flagicon|USA Nozomi Entertainment
released = flagicon|Japan April 26 1980 flagicon|USA May 41994
runtime = 113 minutes
Infobox animanga/Anime
director = Osamu Yamazaki
studio = Minamimachi Bugyōsho, Tokyo Kids, Aniplex
network = flagicon|Japan MBS-TBS, Animax, Kids Station, RCC Chugoku Broadcasting, SBS
licensor = flagicon|Canada flagicon|United States Bandai Entertainment
first = April 7 2007
last = September 22 2007
episodes = 24
episode_list = List of Toward the Terra episodes

nihongo|"Toward the Terra"|地球へ…|Terra e...| is a Japanese science fiction manga series by Keiko Takemiya. It was serialized by Asahi Sonorama "Gekkan Manga Shōnen" between January 1977 and May 1980. In 1978, the manga series won the prestigious Seiun Award,cite web | url=http://www.sf-fan.gr.jp/awards/list.html | title=日本SFファングループ連合会議:星雲賞リスト | language=Japanese | acccessdate=2008-10-04] and in 1979 it also won the Shogakukan Manga Award for shōnen/shōjo manga.cite web | url=http://comics.shogakukan.co.jp/mangasho/rist.html | title=小学館漫画賞:歴代受賞者 | publisher=Shogakukan | language=Japanese | accessdate=2007-08-19] In 2007, American publisher Vertical Inc. released all three volumes of the manga in English under the title "To Terra...", while Japanese publisher Square Enix released a reprint edition of the original manga.

In 1980 it was adapted into an animated movie, produced by Toei Animation and directed by Hideo Onchi. TRSI released the movie in North America as "Toward the Terra", on VHS in 1994 and on laserdisc in 1995.

In 2007, the manga was adapted into an animated TV series, animated by Minamimachi Bugyōsho and Tokyo Kids, produced by Aniplex, SKY Perfect Well Think, and Mainichi Broadcasting System, and directed by Osamu Yamazaki, which premiered in Japan on MBS-TBS's Saturday 6:00pm time slot (previously occupied by other notable anime series such as "Mobile Suit Gundam Seed", "Fullmetal Alchemist" and "Blood+") on April 7, 2007.

Plot

In a distant future where mankind has colonized the stars, life is being controlled by supercomputers. A race of psionics called "Mu" has emerged, and humanity fears and wants to destroy it. Staying hidden and attempting to rescue as many "Mu" children as possible before they are eliminated, the "Mu" have only one longing - to return home.

The plot of "Toward the Terra" spans a large number of years, jumping ahead multiple times, from Jomy's life on Ataraxia, to the various events on Station E-1077, to Jomy's founding of a "Mu" colony on a habitable planet, to the humans' invasion of said planet in order to eradicate the perceived threat, and finally to the "Mu"'s return to Terra.

Characters

Main Characters

;nihongo|Jomy Marcus Shin|ジョミー・マーキス・シン|Jomī Mākisu Shin: Jomy, a student born in the Education City Ataraxia, unknowingly carries the Mu Factor within his genes. On his 14th birthday, he fails his adulthood exam, but is rescued by the Mu from an assassination attempt. Later on, Jomy's dormant powers awaken, and he is confronted with the realization that he is one of the strongest "Mu", and the only hope his race has for continued survival.: Jomy originally rejects the idea of him being a "Mu" but comes to accept it later on and succeeds Soldier Blue as their leader. Despite being unnaturally healthy for a "Mu", in the original manga his well-being eventually deteriorates to a state that renders him blind, deaf and mute.

;nihongo|Keith Anyan|キース・アニアン|Kīsu Anian: Raised in a test tube for the first 14 years of his life, Keith does not remember anything before his non-existent adulthood exam. Labelled as an "android" by Seki Ray Shiroe, he is known for his exceptional mind and elite skills on-board educational station E-1077, on which he befriended Sam. His continued outstanding performance earns him a rapid rise in ranks, and he eventually comes to lead all of Humanity at the young age of 30.: Interestingly, despite being pitted against Jomy and the "Mu" several times throughout the series, Keith's portrayal is similar to that of an anti-hero and somewhat of a second protagonist, rather than a "villain". His connections and experiences with the "Mu" ultimately lead him to betray Grand Mother, and the SD system itself.

;nihongo|Soldier Blue|ソルジャー・ブルー|Sorujā Burū: The first leader of the "Mu", and the very first Type Blue psion, hence the origin of his name. Having an abnormally weak body, Soldier Blue is reaching his limit, and seeks out Jomy to lead his people, and to ensure the continued survival of the "Mu".

;nihongo|Physis|フィシス|Fishisu: A blind woman who uses Tarot cards to predict the future, Physis is perceived by Blue to be the 'goddess' of the "Mu". She is different from other "Mu" in that she does not carry the necessary mutated gene, and is an otherwise normal human whom Blue bestowed upon psionic abilities.

;nihongo|Jonah Matsuka|ジョナ・マツカ|Jona Matsuka: A young man with an unwavering and almost twisted loyalty to Keith. Initially believing that his ability to read minds was merely him being 'weird' and unique', Matsuka is in actuality a Mu who managed to trick the system and pass his adulthood exams without detection. His name is incorrectly translated as Makka in Vertical's English translation of the manga.

;nihongo|Seki Ray Shiroe|セキ・レイ・シロエ|Seki Rei Shiroe: A young boy unaware of his Mu powers, he is a freshman onboard educational station E-1077 during Keith's senior years. With a fiery, rebellious nature and vehement dislike for the system, he opposes the perfectly elite and poker-faced Keith Anyan, constantly provoking him and striving to surpass him. : Although Jomy and Shiroe never meet in the manga or its 1980 adaptation, the TV series features an early episode in which Jomy attempts to take the 10-year-old Shiroe back to the "Shangri-La" with him.

;nihongo|Tony|トォニィ|Toonii: The very first natural birth since the implementation of the SD system, Tony was born to Mu parents on Naska. He marks the first of several similarly-born "Mu" children who experience rapid growth and powers far superior to many of the other "Mu". Despite being hot-headed and rebellious, he holds a deep respect for Jomy, calling him "Grandpa" (despite having no relation to him; however, in the movie version, Tony is depicted as Jomy's son).: Tony's ultimate fate differs in each adaptation. In the original manga, he and the other Nazca-born "Mu" exile themselves to a distant planet after refusing to see Terra; however, in the anime he succeeds the late Jomy as the leader of the "Mu".

Mu

;nihongo|Harley|ハーレイ|Hārei: The commander of the "Mu" mother ship. Despite appearing older than Soldier Blue, they are from the same generation.

;nihongo|Leo|リオ|Rio: A gentle-natured young man born with speech disability, Leo communicates primarily through telepathy. He is one of the first "Mu" to encounter Jomy, aiding his escape from Ataraxia.

;nihongo|Carina|カリナ|Karina: Tony's mother. She is the first female to give birth naturally after the introduction of the SD system's controlled birth program. After Keith stabs the 3-year-old Tony while being held captive on the Mu mothership, Carina is immediately led to believe that he is dead, and she ultimately destroys herself out of her own grief-induced rage.

Humans

;nihongo|Sam Houston|サム・ヒューストン|Samu Hyūsuton: A childhood friend of Jomy, Sam passes his adulthood exam and is placed in the same class as Keith, where the two become close friends. He eventually loses his mind and is reduced to the mentality of am 8-year-old, his mind ironically filled only with the memories of his childhood that repeated memory erasure had forced him to forget. Keith carries Sam's blood in his earrings.

;nihongo|Swena Dalton|スウェナ・ダールトン|Suvena Dāruton: An anime-only character, Swena was another of Jomy's childhood friends. She is placed in the same class as Keith and Sam on E-1077.

;nihongo|Serge Starjon|セルジェ・スタージョン|Seruje Sutājon: An anime-only character who also serves as an homage to Serge Battour, the main character of Kaze to Ki no Uta (another of Keiko Takemiya's more famous works). Serge is loyal to Keith - as shown by his grief when he believes that Keith is dead - and often acts as his second in command. He also befriends Matsuka, and is the only person shown to refer to him by his first name ("Jonah").

Computers

;nihongo|Grandmother|グランドマザー|Gurandomazaa: The all powerful computer that governs mankind. It disapproves of the "Mu".

;nihongo|Computer Terra|コンピュータ・テラ|Konpyuuta Tera: A computer deep within Earth that appears after the destruction of Grandmother. Originally installed ten years before the S.D. calendar, its calculations showed a high probability of the "Mu" deciding Earth's destiny. The politicians of that time disapproved of the calculations and went on to build Grandmother.

;nihongo|Terraz Number 5|テラズ・ナンバー5|Terazu Nanbaa5: One of the nine "Terraz Number" and directly connected to Grandmother. Terraz Number 5 is the computer in charge of the awakening ceremony on Ataraxia.

;nihongo|Mother Eliza|マザー・イライザ|Mazaa Iraiza: The mother computer of Educational Station E-1077. She appears as a holographic projection, taking the form of a person familiar to the student. While she acts as counsellor, she is in reality in charge of the station, frequently praising and favouring Keith, whom she considers her "child".

Other

;nihongo|Weeping Mouse|ナキネズミ|Nakinezumi: A creature looks like a purple fox. It communicates with its kind using ultrasound and is capable of limited telepathy. It was created by the "Mu", but humans were led to believe that it came from a foreign planet. One specimen communicates with Jomy telepathically at Fanatic Dreamworld and is freed from its captivity and follows Jomy to the "Mu" mother ship later on. In contrast, it is also used throughout the TV series as a symbol of Keith and Sam's friendship.

Media

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. The series is licensed in North America by Vertical Inc., which in 2007 released the manga in English under the title "To Terra...".

The series won two prestigious awards: the Seiun Award for best science fiction manga in 1978 and the Shogakukan Manga Award for best shōnen/shōjo manga in 1979.

References

External links

* [http://terra-e.com/ Official website of TV anime series] ja icon
* [http://www.scifi.com/sfw/anime/sfw3543.html Movie review] at SciFi.com
* [http://terra.rightstuf.com Right Stuf/Nozomi's Official "Toward the Terra" Film Website]
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