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File:Twin Spica vol 1 manga cover.jpg

Twin Spica (ふたつのスピカ Futatsu no Supika?) is a science fiction manga series written and illustrated by Kou Yaginuma in 89 chapters. The series tells a coming-of-age story of high school students in the early 21st century training to participate in one of Japan's first human spaceflight missions. It centers around the lead character Asumi Kamogawa, whose decision to become an astronaut is influenced by a family tragedy and a mentor figure from her past.[1]

Prior to writing Twin Spica, Yaginuma had written several short stories depicting Asumi's childhood, beginning with "2015:Fireworks" (2015年の打ち上げ花火 2015 Nen no Uchiage Hanabi?). These stories were serialized by Media Factory from the July 2000 issue (released June 5, 2000) of the seinen manga magazine Comic Flapper until June 5, 2002.[2][3] The Asumi story arc sets the stage for Twin Spica by introducing figures from her childhood that will affect her growth at the fictional Tokyo Space Academy. The main story arc at the space academy was first serialized in the October 2001 issue (released September 5, 2001) of Comic Flapper.[2] It continued until the publication of the 89th chapter on August 5, 2009.[4] Both story arcs have been compiled into 16 bound volumes,[1] with chapters of the Asumi story arc interspersed among several volumes.[2] The series is licensed by Tong Li Publishing for Chinese-language release in Taiwan under the title Dream of Spica (traditional Chinese: 麥穗星之夢; pinyin: Màisuìxīng zhī mèng).[5]

Following a three-week contract negotiation,[6] New York City-based Vertical Inc announced on September 25, 2009, that it had acquired the license to publish Twin Spica in English.[7] Vertical marketing director Ed Chavez explained that the motivation to acquire Twin Spica came about from the company's desire to license works from Japanese publishers that have yet to form a partnership with major American publishers. Chavez proposed that Vertical continued its previous partnership with Media Factory, a smaller publishing company from which Vertical licensed the Guin Saga manga in 2007. In assessing the series for possible licensing, Chavez, a fan of science fiction, found Twin Spica's story "technically sound" and noted it as "possibly one of the most heartfelt series I've read in ages".[8] Vertical expected that the series would help broaden its reader base. Twin Spica would also introduce science fiction to readers in anticipation of future Vertical licenses of works by Osamu Tezuka and the Year 24 Group. While the series was originally published in a seinen magazine, Chavez expected that it would also appeal to fans of shōjo manga.[6]

Volume list

<tr ><th rowspan="2" style="width: 4%;">No.</th><th colspan="2">Japanese</th><th colspan="2">North American</th></th></tr><tr style="border-bottom: 3px solid #f8b540"><th style="width: 24%;">Release date</th><th style="width: 24%;">ISBN</th><th style="width: 24%;">Release date</th><th style="width: 24%;">ISBN</th></tr> <tr style="text-align: center;"><td id="vol1">1</td></td><td> January 23, 2002[9]</td><td>ISBN 978-4-8401-0428-9</td><td>May 4, 2010[10]</td><td>ISBN 978-1-934287-84-2</td></tr><tr style="vertical-align: top; "><td colspan="5">

Chapters

  • "Mission:01"
  • "Mission:02"
  • "Mission:03"
  • "Mission:04"

Flashbacks

  • "2015: Fireworks" (2015年の打ち上げ花火 "2015 Nen no Uchiage Hanabi"?)
  • "Asumi" (アスミ?)

Anecdote

  • "Another Spica" (もうひとつのスピカ "Mō Hitotsu no Supika"?)

</td></tr><tr style="border-bottom: 3px solid #f8b540; text-align: left;"><td colspan="5">In the year 2024, 15-year-old Asumi Kamogawa applies for entrance into the Tokyo Space Academy to fulfill her dream of becoming an astronaut. Asumi hides her intentions from her father, Tomoro Kamogawa, and pays for the examination fee herself, but he discovers an application packet sent by the school. Although initially angered by his daughter's actions, Tomoro supports Asumi and promises to pay for her tuition fees. Asumi and her childhood friend, Shinnosuke Fuchuya, complete the written portion of the entrance examination, but they are then taken with the other applicants to another location for a practical examination. Applicants are divided by gender into groups of three and confined to isolation chambers for one week. Asumi is assigned to a group with Kei Oumi and Marika Ukita, and Fuchuya is assigned to a group with Shu Suzuki and another applicant. Each group must complete an assigned task: line up several thousand domino pieces to create a successful domino effect. Throughout the week, each group must overcome differences among the members and endure a case of decompression sickness. Both Asumi's and Fuchuya's groups decide not to sleep for the final two nights in order to complete the task.

In a flashback to the year 2010, Japan launches the Lion (獅子号 Shishigō?) in the country's first human spaceflight mission, but the fuel catches fire 72 seconds after liftoff and the rocket crashes into nearby Yuigahama. Asumi's mother, who has been in a coma since the incident, dies five years later. Asumi meets the ghost of an astronaut who was onboard the Lion, whom she calls Mr. Lion, and buries her mother's ashes with his help. Asumi later falls into a river but is rescued by Fuchuya. While unconscious, Asumi finds her mother in the spirit world and helps her cross the Sanzu River before waking up.</td></tr>

<tr style="text-align: center;"><td id="vol2">2</td></td><td> April 23, 2002[11]</td><td>ISBN 978-4-8401-0440-1</td><td>July 6, 2010[12]</td><td>ISBN 978-1-934287-86-6</td></tr><tr style="vertical-align: top; "><td colspan="5">

Chapters

  • "Mission:05"
  • "Mission:06"
  • "Mission:07"
  • "Mission:08"

Flashbacks

  • "Campanella's Forest" (カムパネルラの森 "Kamupanerura no Mori"?)
  • "Our Stars, Leaf Stars" (ふたりの星 はっぱ星 "Futari no Hoshi, Happa Hoshi"?)

Anecdote

  • "Another Spica" (もうひとつのスピカ "Mō Hitotsu no Supika"?)

</td></tr><tr style="border-bottom: 3px solid #f8b540; text-align: left;"><td colspan="5">Asumi, Fuchuya, Kei, and Marika attend the Tokyo Space Academy entrance ceremony as members of the inaugural astronaut training program, but Shu skips it despite being appointed the new student representative. Asumi's father visits Tokyo that evening and gives Asumi a hair clip her mother had kept for her. Students in the astronaut program undergo extensive physical training and attend courses ranging from astrophysics to space medicine. Although Marika distances herself from the group, Asumi continues to reach out to her. Marika initially questions Asumi's motives but begins to see the value Asumi places on friendship and her dedication to training. Because Asumi has a smaller body compared to her classmates, the academy must order a new space suit for her. Takahito Sano, a teacher in the astronaut training program who blames Asumi's father for the Lion incident, uses this as an excuse to ask the school board to dismiss Asumi from the academy to limit "unnecessary" expenditures. The board rejects Sano's proposal, but he tells Asumi that her father is responsible for the crash of the Lion. Disturbed by this revelation, Asumi distances herself from her friends and decides to return to Yuigahama.

In a flashback, Asumi goes on a hiking trip with her class during elementary school but runs into the forest alone. Her teacher Yuko Suzunari and Fuchuya find Asumi hiding in a makeshift rocket built by Mr. Lion while he was still alive. Another flashback shows Tomoro Kamogawa being transferred from his duties as a rocket engineer to a division responsible for compensating families who lost relatives in the Lion incident. He is despised by them and meets Kasane Shibata, a girl who bears scars as a result of the accident and befriends Asumi. Kasane finds out that Tomoro is Asumi's father and stops meeting her. Asumi later discovers that Kasane is moving away from Yuigahama and bids her farewell at the train station while promising to remain her friend.</td></tr>

<tr style="text-align: center;"><td id="vol3">3</td></td><td> November 20, 2002[13]</td><td>ISBN 978-4-8401-0468-5</td><td>September 7, 2010[14]</td><td>ISBN 978-1-934287-90-3</td></tr><tr style="vertical-align: top; "><td colspan="5">

Chapters

  • "Mission:09"
  • "Mission:10"
  • "Mission:11"
  • "Mission:12"
  • "Mission:13"

Flashback

  • "Asumi's Cherry Tree" (アスミの桜 "Asumi no Sakura"?)

Anecdote

  • "Another Spica" (もうひとつのスピカ "Mō Hitotsu no Supika"?)

</td></tr><tr style="border-bottom: 3px solid #f8b540; text-align: left;"><td colspan="5">Asumi returns home and finds an invitation to her elementary school teacher's wedding. She finds Mr. Lion, who planned to marry Yuko before his death, on the ridge overlooking the wedding chapel. Mr. Lion tells Asumi that no one truly knows what caused the Lion accident and that everyone involved with the project feels the same responsibility. Asumi returns to Tokyo the next day with Mr. Lion. Following a marathon race during physical training, Asumi and her four friends make a promise that none of them will leave the academy until they have graduated. Sano resigns from the academy after he tells his students that not everyone will become an astronaut. Sano recalls that Tomoro Kamogawa's design for the Lion was chosen over his but finds out that Tomoro was fired when the project faced a budget cut. Kei proposes a summer trip for the group, and Asumi expresses her desire to visit a new observatory in Chiba Prefecture. Asumi invites Marika along, but she declines. Asumi and Kei go to Marika's house on the day of the trip to invite her once again and find Marika in a fight with her father. The three escape and meet with Fuchuya and Shu for their journey. Marika falls unconscious during the hike to the observatory and recalls the solitary life imposed upon her as a child. She regains consciousness but slips off a ridge with Asumi, who attempts to catch her fall. They are rescued several hours later and find out that the observatory is closed.

In a flashback to Asumi's first year in middle school, a dying classmate named Takashi Shimazu befriends Asumi. She becomes close to Takashi, only to distance herself from him after classmates circulate rumors about their relationship. Takashi dies soon after and leaves a drawing of Asumi as a gift, and Asumi finally realizes her affection for him.</td></tr>

<tr style="text-align: center;"><td id="vol4">4</td></td><td> May 23, 2003[15]</td><td>ISBN 978-4-8401-0490-6</td><td>November 2, 2010[16]</td><td>ISBN 978-1-934287-93-4</td></tr><tr style="vertical-align: top; border-bottom: 3px solid #f8b540;"><td colspan="5">

Chapters

  • "Mission:14"
  • "Mission:15"
  • "Mission:16"
  • "Mission:17"
  • "Mission:18"

Flashback

  • "This Star Spica" (コノ星スピカ "Kono Hoshi Supika"?)

Anecdotes

  • "Sentimental" (センチメンタル "Senchimentaru"?)
  • "Another Spica" (もうひとつのスピカ "Mō Hitotsu no Supika"?)

</td></tr>

<tr style="text-align: center;"><td id="vol5">5</td></td><td> October 23, 2003[17]</td><td>ISBN 978-4-8401-0906-2</td><td>January 4, 2011[18]</td><td>ISBN 978-1-935654-02-5</td></tr><tr style="vertical-align: top; border-bottom: 3px solid #f8b540;"><td colspan="5">

Chapters

  • "Mission:19"
  • "Mission:20"
  • "Mission:21"
  • "Mission:22"
  • "Mission:23"
  • "Mission:24"

Anecdote

  • "Another Spica" (もうひとつのスピカ "Mō Hitotsu no Supika"?)

</td></tr>

<tr style="text-align: center;"><td id="vol6">6</td></td><td> April 23, 2004[19]</td><td>ISBN 978-4-8401-0944-4</td><td>March 1, 2011[20]</td><td>ISBN 978-1-935654-03-2</td></tr><tr style="vertical-align: top; border-bottom: 3px solid #f8b540;"><td colspan="5">

Chapters

  • "Mission:25"
  • "Mission:26"
  • "Mission:27"
  • "Mission:28"
  • "Mission:29"

Flashback

  • "Little Little Watery Stars" (小さな小さな水の星 "Chīsana Chīsana Mizu no Hoshi"?)

Anecdote

  • "Another Spica" (もうひとつのスピカ "Mō Hitotsu no Supika"?)

</td></tr>

<tr style="text-align: center;"><td id="vol7">7</td></td><td> December 22, 2004[21]</td><td>ISBN 978-4-8401-0984-0</td><td>May 2011</td><td>—</td></tr><tr style="vertical-align: top; border-bottom: 3px solid #f8b540;"><td colspan="5">

Chapters

  • "Mission:30"
  • "Mission:31"
  • "Mission:32"
  • "Mission:33"
  • "Mission:34"
  • "Mission:35"

Anecdote

  • "Another Spica" (もうひとつのスピカ "Mō Hitotsu no Supika"?)

</td></tr>

<tr style="text-align: center;"><td id="vol8">8</td></td><td> May 23, 2005[22]</td><td>ISBN 978-4-8401-1307-6</td><td>July 2011</td><td>—</td></tr><tr style="vertical-align: top; border-bottom: 3px solid #f8b540;"><td colspan="5">

Chapters

  • "Mission:36"
  • "Mission:37"
  • "Mission:38"
  • "Mission:39"
  • "Mission:40"
  • "Mission:41"

Anecdote

  • "Another Spica" (もうひとつのスピカ "Mō Hitotsu no Supika"?)

</td></tr>

<tr style="text-align: center;"><td id="vol9">9</td></td><td> December 22, 2005[23]</td><td>ISBN 978-4-8401-1349-6</td><td>September 2011</td><td>—</td></tr><tr style="vertical-align: top; border-bottom: 3px solid #f8b540;"><td colspan="5">

Chapters

  • "Mission:42"
  • "Mission:43"
  • "Mission:44"
  • "Mission:45"
  • "Mission:46"

Flashback

  • "Giovanni's Ticket" (ジヨバンニの切符 "Jiyobanni no Kippu"?)

Anecdotes

  • "Konohana Cherry Tree" (コノハナ桜 "Konohana Sakura"?)
  • "Another Spica" (もうひとつのスピカ "Mō Hitotsu no Supika"?)

</td></tr>

<tr style="text-align: center;"><td id="vol10">10</td></td><td> March 23, 2006[24]</td><td>ISBN 978-4-8401-1377-9</td><td>November 2011</td><td>—</td></tr><tr style="vertical-align: top; border-bottom: 3px solid #f8b540;"><td colspan="5">

Chapters

  • "Mission:47"
  • "Mission:48"
  • "Mission:49"
  • "Mission:50"
  • "Mission:51"
  • "Mission:52"

Anecdote

  • "Another Spica" (もうひとつのスピカ "Mō Hitotsu no Supika"?)

</td></tr>

<tr style="text-align: center;"><td id="vol11">11</td></td><td> November 22, 2006[25]</td><td>ISBN 978-4-8401-1635-0</td><td>January 2012</td><td>—</td></tr><tr style="vertical-align: top; border-bottom: 3px solid #f8b540;"><td colspan="5">

Chapters

  • "Mission:53"
  • "Mission:54"
  • "Mission:55"
  • "Mission:56"
  • "Mission:57"
  • "Mission:58"

Anecdote

  • "Another Spica" (もうひとつのスピカ "Mō Hitotsu no Supika"?)

</td></tr>

<tr style="text-align: center;"><td id="vol12">12</td></td><td> March 23, 2007[26]</td><td>ISBN 978-4-8401-1687-9</td><td>March 2012</td><td>—</td></tr><tr style="vertical-align: top; border-bottom: 3px solid #f8b540;"><td colspan="5">

Chapters

  • "Mission:59"
  • "Mission:60"
  • "Mission:61"
  • "Mission:62"
  • "Mission:63"
  • "Mission:64"

Anecdote

  • "Another Spica" (もうひとつのスピカ "Mō Hitotsu no Supika"?)

</td></tr>

<tr style="text-align: center;"><td id="vol13">13</td></td><td> December 22, 2007[27]</td><td>ISBN 978-4-8401-1984-9</td><td>May 2012</td><td>—</td></tr><tr style="vertical-align: top; border-bottom: 3px solid #f8b540;"><td colspan="5">

Chapters

  • "Mission:65"
  • "Mission:66"
  • "Mission:67"
  • "Mission:68"
  • "Mission:69"

Anecdote

  • "Another Spica" (もうひとつのスピカ "Mō Hitotsu no Supika"?)

</td></tr>

<tr style="text-align: center;"><td id="vol14">14</td></td><td> March 22, 2008[28]</td><td>ISBN 978-4-8401-2205-4</td><td>July 2012</td><td>—</td></tr><tr style="vertical-align: top; border-bottom: 3px solid #f8b540;"><td colspan="5">

Chapters

  • "Mission:70"
  • "Mission:71"
  • "Mission:72"
  • "Mission:73"
  • "Mission:74"
  • "Mission:75"

Anecdote

  • "Another Spica" (もうひとつのスピカ "Mō Hitotsu no Supika"?)

</td></tr>

<tr style="text-align: center;"><td id="vol15">15</td></td><td> June 23, 2009[29]</td><td>ISBN 978-4-8401-2576-5</td><td>September 2012</td><td>—</td></tr><tr style="vertical-align: top; border-bottom: 3px solid #f8b540;"><td colspan="5">

Chapters

  • "Mission:76"
  • "Mission:77"
  • "Mission:78"
  • "Mission:79"
  • "Mission:80"
  • "Mission:81"
  • "Mission:82"

Anecdotes

  • "Three-Dimensional Spica" (三次元のスピカ "Sanjigen no Supika"?)
  • "Another Spica" (もうひとつのスピカ "Mō Hitotsu no Supika"?)

</td></tr>

<tr style="text-align: center;"><td id="vol16">16</td></td><td> October 23, 2009[1][30]</td><td>ISBN 978-4-8401-2923-7</td><td>November 2012</td><td>—</td></tr><tr style="vertical-align: top; border-bottom: 3px solid #f8b540;"><td colspan="5">

Chapters

  • "Mission:83"
  • "Mission:84"
  • "Mission:85"
  • "Mission:86"
  • "Mission:87"
  • "Mission:88"
  • "Mission:89"

Anecdote

  • "Another Spica" (もうひとつのスピカ "Mō Hitotsu no Supika"?)

</td></tr> </table>

See also

References

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 "Twin Spica Sci-Fi Coming-of-Age Manga Ends in Japan". Anime News Network. August 7, 2009. Retrieved August 19, 2009. 
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 Script error
  3. Script error
  4. Script error
  5. Script error
  6. 6.0 6.1 Welsh, David (October 5, 2009). "Flipped!: David Welsh Interviews Vertical's Ed Chavez On Their New Announcements". The Comics Reporter. Retrieved October 18, 2009. 
  7. "Vertical Adds Peepo Choo, Twin Spica, Needle, Chi's Sweet Home". Anime News Network. September 25, 2009. Retrieved September 26, 2009. 
  8. VonSchilling, Scott (October 16, 2009). "Interview: How Vertical Owned the NYAF". The Anime Almanac. Retrieved October 18, 2009. 
  9. Script error
  10. "Twin Spica, Volume: 01". Random House. Retrieved November 15, 2009. 
  11. Script error
  12. "Twin Spica, Volume: 02". Random House. Retrieved November 15, 2009. 
  13. Script error
  14. "Twin Spica, Volume: 03". Random House. Retrieved January 6, 2010. 
  15. Script error
  16. "Twin Spica, Volume: 04". Random House. Retrieved February 15, 2010. 
  17. Script error
  18. "Twin Spica, Volume: 05". Random House. Retrieved May 4, 2010. 
  19. Script error
  20. "Twin Spica, Volume: 06". Random House. Retrieved July 14, 2010. 
  21. Script error
  22. Script error
  23. Script error
  24. Script error
  25. Script error
  26. Script error
  27. Script error
  28. Script error
  29. Script error
  30. Script error

External links

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