In 2075, space travel is no longer just a dream, but an everyday reality for mankind. Advancements in science and technology have led to the colonization of the moon, the commercialization of outer space, and the formation of large space corporations. Ai Tanabe, an upbeat woman whose interests lie in the cosmos, joins Technora Corporation as a member of their Debris Section, a department dedicated to the removal of dangerous space junk between the orbits of the Earth and Moon.
However, Ai soon discovers how unappreciated her job is. As the laughingstock of Technora, the Debris Section is severely understaffed, poorly funded, and is forced to use a dilapidated spaceship nicknamed the “Toy Box” for debris retrieval. Undeterred, Ai perseveres and gradually becomes acquainted with the strange personalities that make up the Debris Section’s staff, such as the bumbling but good-natured chief clerk Philippe Myers; the mysterious and tight-lipped temp worker Edelgard Rivera; and the hotheaded and passionate Hachirouta Hoshino, who longs for a spaceship to call his own.
Planetes is an unconventional sci-fi series that portrays the vastness of space as a backdrop for the personal lives of ordinary people—people who may have been born on Earth, but whose hopes and dreams lie amongst the stars.
About the Show
Planetes is an anime adaptation of the sci-fi manga series under the same name, written and illustrated by Makoto Yukimura. Produced by studio Sunrise under the direction of Gorou Taniguchi, Planetes aired a total of 26 episodes between October 4, 2003 and April 17, 2004.
Episode 1: Outside the Atmosphere
Ai Tanabe boards the ISPV 7 Space Station for her new job, and learns that she is assigned to the Debris Section. She is accompanied by Hachimaki for her first mission, and they’re tasked to deorbit a memorial plate.
Episode 2: Like a Dream
Hachimaki is made fun of by the other crew members of the Debris Section after he expresses his desire to acquire his own spaceship. Later, a derelict satellite goes on a collision course with Cheng-Shing’s orbital shuttle.
Episode 3: Return Trajectory
During a routine debris collection, Tanabe, Hachimaki, and Yuri Mihairov, recover a space coffin containing a prominent astronaut.
Episode 4: Part of the Job
Colin Clifford, the spoiled son of INTO’s chairman, visits the ISPV 7 Space Station. Later, the other crew members defend Hachimaki after Colin humiliates her.
Episode 5: Fly Me to the Moon
Hachimaki, Tanabe, and Fee decide to spend their holiday at the Moon. Instead of a relaxing time, the group find themselves tangled in a series of misunderstandings.
Episode 6: The Lunar Flying Squirrels
Hachimaki takes Tanabe to a rundown hotel on the Moon, and is later chased by the neighborhood ninja-wannabes. After some misunderstanding, Hachimaki rescues a girl he was supposed to be married with from a fire.
Episode 7: Extraterrestrial Girl
Hachimaki has to stay at a hospital, after injuring his leg during the fire incident. There, he meets a Lunarian named Nono, and a dying astronaut named Harry.
Episode 8: A Place to Cling to
Fee is offered a promotion as assistant chief of Control Section. However, she later turns it down after realizing that she prefers to work with the Debris Section crew.
Episode 9: Regrets
Gigalt Gangaragash visits the Debris Section for a safety inspection. Later, they encounter a group performing an illegal debris dumping activity.
Episode 10: A Sky of Stardust
Tanabe worries about Hachimaki, after learning about Gigalt’s cancer. Later, Yuri finds his deceased wife’s compass during a routine debris retrieval mission.
Episode 11: Boundary Line
An engineer from El Tanika visits the ISPV 7 Space Station to have his new spacesuit tested. However, due to the lowly status of his home country, no one at the space station wants to help him. The Debris Section then helps him test the new spacesuit.
Episode 12: A Modest Request
Fee learns about the terrorist bombings carried out by the Space Defense Front and frustrates her. Later, Fee pilots the Toy Box into Earth to save the ISPV 7 Space Station from a terrorist attack.
Episode 13: Scenery with a Rocket
Following the Toy Box’s destruction, the Debris Section goes on a holiday to Earth. There, Tanabe and Hachimaki share an intimate moment together, while Yuri learns something valuable from Hachimaki’s little brother.
Episode 14: Turning Point
The Debris Section receives a new hauling ship that will replace the Toy Box. Robbie then informs the Debris Section about the prohibition of office romance. Despite this, Hachimaki asks Tanabe to become his girlfriend, and the latter responds with a kiss.
Episode 15: In Her Case
Hachimaki and Tanabe sets out on their very first date. Later, Edelgard is contacted by her ex-husband, Sasha.
Episode 16: Ignition
Hachimaki is left alone in space in the middle of a solar flare, an experience which almost made him retire from being an astronaut. However, thanks to his friends, Hachimaki reconsiders his decision.
Episode 17: His Reasons
Werner Locksmith, chief engineer of the Jupiter Exploration Mission, visits the Debris Section in search of Hachimaki’s father, Goro Hoshino.
Episode 18: Debris Section, Last Day
The Debris Section is to be shut down, after orders were issued by the new director, Dolph. Later, during a final mission with the Toy Box, the Debris Section crew discovers a secret INTO orbital mine.
Episode 19: Endings Are Always…
Hachimaki decides to resign from the Debris Section. After discovering the classified INTO military satellite, the Debris Section wins a reprieve. On Earth, Hachimaki joins the candidates for Von Braun hosted by Locksmith.
Episode 20: Tentative Steps
The tests for Von Braun continues. Up in space, Claire is demoted from the Control Section to replace Hachimaki’s slot.
Episode 21: Tandem Mirror
The Debris Section gets assigned to recover debris from the Moon caused by the Tandem Mirror disaster. Later, Hachimaki discovers that Hakim plans to sabotage their mission.
Episode 22: Exposure
Hachimaki is reunited with the rest of the crew. Later, Gigalt dies from his cancer.
Episode 23: Debris Cluster
The Space Defense Front attacks INTO.
Episode 24: Love
The Space Defense Front’s attack continues to cause more damage and take more lives.
Episode 25: The Lost
Hachimaki meets a paralyzed Tanabe back on Earth.
Episode 26: And the Days We Chance Upon…
Hachimaki proposes to Tanabe, while they share an intimate moment out in space.