After discovering an element on the moon that, when used to create a nuclear reaction, would power the Earth for the next 1,000 years, the leaders of sixteen countries declared that their space programs would be combined into the International Space Agency (ISA) – and fifteen nuclear reactors would be built on the moon by the year 2023. Lostman and Goro are two young climbers who have conquered the highest point on Earth – Mt. Everest – and now look to the skies for their next challenge: to become astronauts and explore the stars. While Goro becomes a construction specialist, Lostman joins the air force; both will work their hardest to make their way into space, by whatever means necessary.
In the year 2075, humanity has spread to the stars, along with their technology, colonies, and... waste? At such great speeds in orbit, even a tiny bolt can cause a tragic disaster. Enter the team of the half division. Their job? To gather the garbage and debris that circles the Earth, in order to keep space safe. From broken-down satellites to bolts and nails, there's nothing that the underpaid and underappreciated staff can't salvage. Join Hachimaki, Tanabe, Fee, and the rest of the gang as they risk their lives to keep space clean, and keep their wallets... empty.
When Moonlight Mile came out, most people assumed it would be nothing more than a Planetes ripoff. While both are realistic tales of space travel, they are fairly different in content, style, and tone. Regardless, if you are interested in space travel and enjoy realism, these two anime are of the few that exist.
Both series are Science Fiction in the classic sense. No mecha children and magic transformations, but real people in a realistic concept of the future.
In the present, murders are solved not by investigations, but by memories. Using the removed brain of a victim, the members of Forensic Investigation Office Section Nine examine the person's last thoughts to determine a suspect and motive in the case. Many oppose the violation of their loved ones' private and personal memories; but what they don't understand is that behind the scenes, even the investigators themselves are often conflicted with their deeds. Aoki Ikko is one such man who struggles to overcome his own mental doubts about his profession, while trying his best to take down those responsible for the crimes.
Though Moonlight Mile and Himitsu would seem to have little in common at first glance, well... maybe they don't. Regardless, call this one a gut feeling: the drama, sci fi and intelligent moments make both of these a good fit for each other. They easily would appeal to the same audiences.
When Mutta and Hibito were children, they made a promise to become astronauts together after spotting a UFO one night. Now adults, the duo's path couldn't have diverged more – Hibito is about to travel to the moon with NASA to help simulate the future exploration of Mars, and Mutta is unemployed, having recently headbutted his boss at an auto company. Still, the man can't shake his desire to surpass his younger brother, and soon, he becomes an applicant for Japan's JAXA space program. His ultimate goal, to get one step ahead of Hibito and go to Mars. But the path to becoming an astronaut is long and fraught with tests and challenges. Will Mutta and newfound friends Kenji and Serika manage to persevere and achieve their dream?
The tone and plot of these aren't too similar, but both involve a pair of men who make a promise to each other to become astronauts, and approach the goal in a different way. It's not a super common theme in anime, so if you liked one, you could try the other.
In the year 2058, mankind is about to take its first leap into the distant reaches of space. Using the resources at the tail end of a comet, massive spaceships will be sent to the corners of the universe in an attempt to colonize other worlds, but due to the length of time it will take to arrive at even the closest solar system, the comets must be destroyed in-flight, resulting in super-fast speeds that will kill any life onboard; only frozen sperm and eggs, and machines will survive the journey. Carrying the unborn children of the Robinsons, the first of these ships must now set forth to Ozma; and with its precious cargo is coupled the hopes and fears of all humanity.
Moonlight Mile and Space Fantasia 2001 Nights are realistic looks at mankind's attempts to travel into space. SF is a bit more fantastical in nature, but each has a tone and feel that will remind you of the other.
SF is an epic journey into the stars, while MM is the beginning of a basic one; if you liked one, you'd like the other.
When Asumi was just a baby, a space shuttle accident changed her life, and the lives of the townspeople of Yuigahama, forever. As a young woman, the spirited Asumi has only one desire: to someday travel to the stars in a rocket, with her father and ghostly friend Lion-san along for the ride. With heartache, happiness, and plenty of determination, Asumi and dozens of talented teenagers now face the greatest challenge of their lives: the test to enter a prestigious space academy, so that they may one day reach out and touch the stars...
The comparison should be obvious; both Twin Spica and Moonlight Mile follow people who want nothing more than to go into space. Twin Spica is more of a childish tale, while Moonlight Mile is (unfortunately) overtly adult at times - regardless, both are realistic stories of space travel and preparation, and fans of one would surely enjoy the other.