A manga and 26-episode anime built around the premise of a modern [[KaijuDefenseForce JMSDF]] Aegis destroyer named the ''JDS Mirai'' [[TimeTravel traveling through time]] back to the [[UsefulNotes/WorldWarII Battle of Midway]] . . . and the crew doing nothing. Fearing a TemporalParadox, the ship's captain decides stay as isolated as possible, while trying to figure out a way back home. This course of action does not go as planned, due largely to an [[UsefulNotes/ImperialJapan Imperial Japanese Navy]] officer the executive officer rescues, who reads the contents of the ship's library - and thus learns [[UsefulNotes/SecondSinoJapaneseWar the true nature]] [[UsefulNotes/WorldWarTwo of the war]] and what came after it.
Compare and contrast ''Zipang'''s events with the actions of the crew of the ''USS Nimitz'' in the 1980 movie ''Film/TheFinalCountdown'', where that ship was sent to Pearl Harbor ([[spoiler:and rescued a senator from the time period, too]]).
** Yatake, pilot of Umidori. Having far more advanced aircraft doesn't hurt.
** Hatton, attacking and [[RammingAlwaysWorks ramming the ''Mirai'']] when his plane got hit, and surviving.
** Singh, of KiplingsFinest squad.
* AlienSpaceBats: How the time storm comes to exist, how it works, and why it's targeting the ''Mirai'' at that particular time... [[MST3KMantra who cares?]]
* AnyoneCanDie: Aside the fact that some historical figures can and '''[[YouCantFightFate will]]''' die, the ''Mirai'''s crew isn't exempt from this. [[spoiler:Not even their captain, as the manga version shows later on.]]
* CoolBoat: The ''Mirai'' fits in that it is a modern AEGIS ship in WWII, which means it practically outclasses everything in the seas. That, and the ship it is a quite realistic design, which is a nice change of pace from the more fantastical designs of other fictional vessels.
** It's supposed to look realistic: the ''Mirai'' is mentioned as a fictitious ''Yukinami'' class destroyer, a variant of the real ''Kongo'' class destroyer designed to carry helicopters, which is in turn a modified version of the American ''Arleigh Burke'' class destroyer. (Interestingly, the JMSDF has since brought the ''Atago'' class destroyer into service, which is a real variant of the ''Kongo'' class intended to carry a helicopter, making it a real-life version of the ''Yukinami'' class for all intents and purposes. They even predicted, with impressive accuracy, how much larger a ''Kongo'' would have to be to add those capabilities.)
*** Not so much a prediction of a future capacity as a prediction that Japan would start building a version of the Flight IIA Burke-class destroyers (the first Flight IIA Burke, which added the hangar, was USS ''Oscar Austin'' (DDG-79), which entered service in 1998).
** And of course there's the several appearances of the Battleship ''Yamato'', a real-life CoolBoat in that it was the biggest battleship ever built.
* CoolPlane: The Umidori, the fictional VTOL scout craft of the ''Mirai'' which looks like the result of a tryst between an Apache attack helicopter and an Osprey.
** For classic plane fans, there are several WWII aircraft, most prominently the Dauntless dive bomber. While scores of them were chewed up by the ''Mirai's'' modern weaponry, one piloted by a particularly gutsy and lucky pilot managed to score a solid hit on the ''Mirai'' by [[RammingAlwaysWorks ramming it]] . . . and the pilot lives too.
*** There's also the Spit Fire Mark V piloted by AcePilot Singh, who takes the Alliance's side. Hurricane, Mosquito, Beaufighter, and Blenheim are also in his squad.
** The Zero makes a few appearances on the Japanese side. In particular, the rare floatplane version of the Zero intercepts the Umidori when the latter is sent to reconnoiter the Chichi Jima (a fairly heavily inhabited neighbor of Iwo Jima that does not have the real estate to support a real airfield).
** The A-29, a civilian long distance plane also makes an appearance. Capable of travel from Tokyo to New York, it gets missions to travel Tokyo-Singapore and Singapore-Berlin. In Zipang's timeline they even pulled it and came to Japan to boot. They didn't survive in Real Life history.
* CutShort: In the anime, the plot is not resolved in any way, instead just [[NoEnding petering out]] when they ran out of episodes.
* DeliberateValuesDissonance: The differing mindsets of the militaristic Imperial Japanese and the more pacifistic modern-day crew of the ''Mirai'' are explored in several instances.
** This shows up again in the encounter between former Prime Minister Yonai and the main characters. Yonai opposes the warmongers but believes that, for the future peace and prosperity of Japan, a painful and destructive defeat is necessary. The main characters have trouble buying into his line of thinking.
* ForWantOfANail: The ''Mirai'' notably declines to be the nail right the point at which it is commonly agreed by historians that a nail could have done Japan any good- the ship pops in on the first day of the Battle of Midway, in which Japan lost four aircraft carriers and is considered to have begun its defeat, but heads for home instead of the battle.
* GreyAndGreyMorality: The show strives for this, but given that this is ImperialJapan in the UsefulNotes/SecondSinoJapaneseWar and UsefulNotes/WorldWarTwo, the show only manages this by ignoring the [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/World_War_II_casualties#Japanese_war_crimes five-to-twenty million people]] who died due to Japanese economic mismanagement [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Japanese_war_crimes and War Crimes]] - and focusing instead upon [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/World_War_II_casualties Japan's two million military and one million civilian dead.]] That said, some 3-5 of those 5-20 million overwhelmingly-Asiatic dead were soldiers, like the 100k who died on the [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bataan_Death_March Bataan POW March]].
** [[spoiler: HitlersTimeTravelExemptionAct: Subversion, Kusaka knows Japan will lose, so he pulled strings so Lt. Tsuda do it. Failed.]]
* InSpiteOfANail: Though the timeline in the Pacific Theater differs greatly from actual history, the European Theater proceeds as history dictates. [[spoiler: knowing Italy will surrender, the Pacifist faction wants TheEmperor to propose peace to Allies. This fails because Kusaka also knew, and he informs the Tojo/pro-war faction so they will prolong the war]].
* MeaningfulName: The name of the ship (''Mirai'') means "future" in Japanese.
* MoralMyopia: The ''Mirai's'' crew would like to stop the war so that the Japanese People won't suffer as much as they did in the original timeline... with little mention that in doing so they are helping Japan's brutal military dictatorship to drive their country and their people into the ground before they are inevitably defeated by the weight of Allied industrial superiority[[note]]The US alone having an advantage of more than ten-to-one in all meaningful production categories[[/note]]. That millions of people are suffering and dying pointlessly as a direct result of the regime's refusal to surrender is not debated or mentioned.
** Despite wanting to end the war early and save lives, the ''Mirai's'' crew only ever approach their problems from a perspective of helping Imperial Japan. No one ever even considers that they could instead help America win the war faster, and bring a swifter end to the military dictatorship ruling the country.
* MyCountryRightOrWrong: Though they try to avoid mucking with the timeline, once things start to spiral it never even occurs to the crew that maybe they should side with Britain and/or the USA - you know, countries with governments that ''aren't'' brutal military dictatorships responsible for the deaths of millions.
** Deconstructed during a HeroicBSOD by Masayuki. He was the pacifist in the future who seriously thought about resigning from the SDF when Japan might have to send its forces to support the US during its conflicts in the Middle East. But he insists that the ''Mirai'' has no choice but to fight the Allies because, like it or not, they are a Japanese warship and every Allied ship and plane they came across in the past saw them as an enemy and attacked them.
* MyNameIsNotShazam: The name of the ship is ''Mirai'', not ''Zipang''.
* NiceJobBreakingItHero: Our heroes may have 'succeeded' in prolonging the war... if they have, this will result in greater Japanese civilian deaths than in the original timeline, as the US won't be around to rescue the country from the brink of starvation[[note]]ImperialJapan imported much, of its food[[/note]] in 1945. Overall civilian and military casualties may well be an order of magnitude higher (to the tune of at least a couple of million extra Japanese dead) if the Allies have to resort to ''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Operation_downfall Operation Downfall]]'' instead of merely the (300k killing) Atomic Bombs as per the original timeline. Finally, the Red (Workers And Peasants) Army can be expected to liberate not just Manchuria, but Korea and northern (and perhaps eastern) China as well. Depending on the spheres of influence hashed out beforehand, and which Chinese leader(s) Stalin chose to support[[note]] While the Communists would seem the logical choice, not least because of their natural isolation and thus dependency on the USSR, Mao would hardly be their first choice. Whomever they favoured, Communist or not, would owe them ''big time'' [[/note]], this could very well change the outcome of [[NoMoreEmperors the Chinese Civil War]] and avert the UsefulNotes/KoreanWar entirely.
* NotSoDifferent: Neither the JMSDF nor the IJN personnel want Japan to be defeated, regardless of politics and the suffering of non-Japanese in the war.
* OfficerAndAGentleman: the IJN officer they rescue from a crashed seaplane fits this trope to a T.
* RedChina: In a way, Mao's army show up as enemy of Imperial Japanese Army. [[SmallReferencePools The myriad other Chinese foes like Yan Xishan, and]] ChiangKaiShek, [[SmallReferencePools don't]].
* RogueAgent: Kusaka heads off to attempt to utilize the raw resources in Manchukuo to sustain Japan's war economy and build a nuclear weapon outside the authority of the Japanese military.
* ShownTheirWork: For the most part, the show does a remarkably accurate job of portraying various aircraft and ships that appear throughout the series.
** Not only the characteristics of the destroyer--the writers also did their homework on moon phases. To be clear: both the 4 June dates, in 2004 and 1942, are correctly shown (full moon and last quarter, respectively). Attention is called to this, and it's one more thing that proves something has gone wrong.
** Curiously in the midst of all the ShownTheirWork, the ''Mirai'''s superiority only lasting for the first thirty or forty targets it engages is never discussed in the anime (though it is in the manga). It would be quite possible for WWII enemies to mob it to death.
*** This is an important plot element twice in the anime version. First, when the Yamato arrives to shell Guadalcanal, Masayuki mentions that, since they will soon run out of missiles to intercept shells with, the only choice they have is to attack Yamato directly. Later, he suggests that they intercept the US naval bomber squadron when they are closer with cannon and short range missiles because they only have so many long range missiles.
* SlidingScaleOfIdealismVersusCynicism: The JMSDF trains its people to emphasize non-lethal methods, something that wears off the more time the crew spends in combat.
* TrappedInThePast: One of the few instances where the characters make an honest and serious attempt to keep their heads down.