your name. Another Side: Earthbound Vol. 2 Review

Title: Your Name – Another Side: Earthbound Vol. 2
Author: Arata Kanoh (Story), Jyunya Nakamura (Art), Makoto Shinkai (Original Story)
Publisher: Yen Press
Language: English
Format: Paperback
Pages: 176
Genre: Sci-Fi, Romance
Publication Date: December 24, 2019

The Story

There was an interview with film director Makoto Shinkai where he said that your name. (Kimi no Na wa) felt unfinished. Through the two volumes of Another Side: Earthbound, I get the feeling that he was right. The way that these two volumes fleshed out some of the characters does make your name. feel a bit more complete.

While volume one focused on Mitsuha, Tesshi, and Saya, the second volume focuses on Yotsuha, Futaba, and Toshiki.

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With Yotsuha, her story is interwoven during the body-switching events of Taki and Mitsuha. We see things from her point of view in addition to something rather peculiar that wasn’t shown in the film at all. I’ll let you all read that for yourselves but what does happen throws things out of whack just a little bit. It makes it a bit confusing as to how Yostuha acted in the film after what she encountered here in this volume. I don’t know if it was done in order to try and fill a gap or if it was just an oversight by Shinkai. Maybe it was there in the film and it was just so subtle that we overlooked it. This means I’ll have to watch the movie again to see if it really is represented (which is not a bad thing because I absolutely love this movie!)

When we get to Futaba and Toshiki, we’re given a complete and total backstory on the two of them. We see what Toshiki was, how he married Futaba, how Mitsuha and Yotsuha were born, and just how Futaba’s death changed him into the person we see in the film. The second half of the arc follows Toshiki through the events of the movie from his point of view. The volume ends right before the ending of the movie… when the comet was about to fall on the town so we don’t really get to see what happens in the aftermath from this point of view. We just know what happens by watching the film.

I suspect that’s what the final page of the manga means. It clearly stated “THE END” but then it states “…to be continued but that’s another story.” I wonder if there will be another side story manga or if it was referring to the movie. I would venture to guess the movie as I hadn’t heard of anything else being created for Kimi no Na wa…. Especially since Makoto Shinkai had moved on to Tenki no Ko (Weathering With You.) Still, if this was the end, story-wise, then I can be satisfied with this. It gave us some meaningful looks into the lives of the side characters and truly made your name. feel like a more completed story!

Characters

As mentioned before, we focus on Yotsuha in the first half of this volume. She is still the same Yotsuha we know and love, lauding over her sister’s weirdness from time to time. It’s pretty clear that the grandmother knows what’s going on as she tries to explain it to Yotsuha by talking about Musumi… the same spiritual belief that was talked about in the film. This leads Yotsuha to become curious which leads to the event I hinted at earlier. It was interesting to see Yotsuha try and take in and process this information but, as far as the film goes, it doesn’t seem she fully grasped it. Maybe she did and just didn’t want to accept it or perhaps she was just too young to understand it fully. Still, it’s nice to see that she wasn’t left in the dark completely about what was going on.

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Toshiki, on the other hand, was a pretty likable character. He was a reporter who was going around to old villages to learn about their myths and legends. He comes to visit the MIyamizu shrine and that’s when he meets Futaba. It’s love at first sight and he starts to use his interviews as an excuse to talk to her. Eventually, they get married and that’s when he becomes Toshiki Miyamizu… taking Futaba’s last name rather than having her take his. Things were going great until Futaba became ill. Toshiki tried everything he could to get her to seek treatment but she refused, accepting her impending end. She believed that everything was being put into its rightful place because of it.

When Futaba died, it sent Toshiki spiraling down into depression. He couldn’t understand Futaba’s line of reasoning and something dark began to rise up inside of him. He decided that he wanted to modernize the thinking of the town and have them abandon their rituals and their beliefs. This is why he sought out to become mayor and to do that, he wanted to disassociate himself with the MIyamizu name which is why he dropped off his kids at grandma’s and then left to focus on changing the town. It is very night and day between Toshiki’s two personalities but it’s understandable why he would begin to think that way. He gave up everything to be with Futaba and then everything he had sacrificed for was taken away from him without any fight to keep it. The Toshiki we know from the film was the result of that heartache.

Final Thoughts

Your name was an amazing movie. It only slightly lost to A Silent Voice as my favorite anime from 2016 but just because it’s in my personal second place doesn’t mean the film wasn’t anything short of a masterpiece. Another Side: Earthbound does an amazing job of filling in the gaps of the film and if you loved the movie then this 2-volume series is a definite must-read. It really helps complete the story and makes the film feel whole.

It’s enough to make you wonder if CoMix Wave will go back and “redo” the film by adding in some of this material… thus creating an extended edition. Even though it is few and far between, it has happened before in the world of cinematography. Though in this day and age, it’s even rarer than it was back then but it’s still a nice thought to hold onto.

Even if we never see an extended edition of your name., we still have this manga to explain everything. Do yourself a favor… watch the movie then read this series. If movie-watching isn’t for you, your name. is also available as a light novel and a manga series as well. Check it out as this is well worth your time!

Be sure to follow me on Twitter @JJPiedraTOH

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This item was provided for review by Yen Press

About The Author

Josh Piedra

Josh (or J.J. as some have come to call him), is a long-time geek culture enthusiast with a deep passion for anime, manga and Japanese culture. Josh also has a Bachelor of Arts in Game Design and is a creative writer who has created original content for over 20 years! He is also the author of the original English light novel Final Hope.

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