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Extra-Terrestrial Boys And Girls - What We Know So Far

Science fiction has long been a staple of the anime world, likely due in part to the fact that fantastical sci-fi creations are not necessarily any harder to bring to life in animation than fixtures of the real world. All-time classic anime movie "Akira," for example, takes place in a decidedly sci-fi, dystopian future. Its depiction of a futuristic Tokyo benefits from its animated medium, able to appear exactly to its creators' specifications rather than being bounded by technology as a similar setting might be in a live-action film.

Mecha anime, meanwhile, is a formidable subgenre in and of itself that includes numerous heavy hitters like the entire "Gundam" franchise and longtime classic "Neon Genesis Evangelion." Mecha series, in which humans pilot giant, humanoid robots, are likewise firmly rooted within the science fiction genre and benefit from their medium in a similar manner.

"Extra-Terrestrial Boys and Girls" — a direct translation of "地球外少年少女" or "Chikyuugai Shounen Shoujo," as it's officially titled — is an upcoming original project that looks to add to the large and growing tradition of science fiction in anime. Here's everything we know so far.

When will Extra-Terrestrial Boys and Girls be released?

Since "Extra-Terrestrial Boys and Girls" is not based on any existing source material, relatively little is known about the project for the time being. The majority of details currently available about "Extra-Terrestrial Boys and Girls" were compiled in a preview shared on Twitter by writer and director Mitsuo Iso that was translated and recounted by sites like Anime News Network.

Iso is a seasoned animator, having contributed to well-known works like "Neon Genesis Evangelion," "FLCL," and "Porco Rosso," among others (via Anime News Network). His sole credit as writer and director thus far is on the sci-fi anime "Dennou Coil" about a group of high schoolers in a future heavily impacted by widespread augmented reality technology.

"Extra-Terrestrial Boys and Girls," meanwhile, will take place in space in a similarly futuristic environment. Iso revealed that it will be released in "hatsuharu" 2022. Anime News Network explained that the term, which consists of words for "beginning" and "spring" (via Jisho), can refer to either the first couple months of the year or the first couple months of the Spring season. So, while its release date is currently uncertain, it should arrive early in 2022 in either case.

Who are the principal characters in Extra-Terrestrial Boys and Girls?

Neither creator Mitsuo Iso nor Production +h, an anime studio founded explicitly for the project (via Otaquest), have revealed many details about the principal characters in "Extra-Terrestrial Boys and Girls" beyond their appearances and a few fundamentals.

Iso's tweet previewing the series includes a short video of unfinished stills and animation. The first few shots are of the specific brand of advanced technology that exists in the future of "Extra-Terrestrial Boys and Girls," including personal gadgets and large space stations. Various characters are then shown in rough, unanimated sketches.

These include a 14-year-old boy with dark hair and a green hoodie named Touya (登矢); a 14-year-old girl with short, dark hair and bangs, wearing an orange jacket and accompanied by a small robot, named Konoha (心葉); a brown-haired 15-year-old boy in a white jacket named Taiyou (大羊); a 14-year-old girl in a dress with silver hair named Miina (美衣奈); and a 12-year-old boy with glasses named Hiroshi (博士).

What is the plot of Extra-Terrestrial Boys and Girls?

A plot synopsis shared widely online, including in a preview on MyAnimeList, describes "Extra-Terrestrial Boys and Girls" as taking place in the year 2045, at which point advanced technologies are available not just on Earth but also in space. The series' core cast of characters all inhabit a space station that becomes the site of a technological disaster. The kids must then work together to survive in space by utilizing their remaining, still-working technology, including social media, artificial intelligence, and drones they can control with their smartphones.

Iso's preview video reveals what some of these technologies look like. Its opening shot, for example, is of a hand clad in a glove that doubles as a smart device, recording a video from a camera that seems to exist on its user's palm and previewing that video on the back of their hand. The teaser likewise showcases robots of various shapes and sizes. 

More details about the sci-fi world of "Extra-Terrestrial Boys and Girls" should become available as its early 2022 release date draws closer.