wFeb 7, 2009

Rec: Sailor Moon

Post originally created for Halfamoon

Sailor Moon is a manga series created by Naoko Taekuchi. It ran from 1992 to 1997, and has spawned a 5-season anime series, three movies, a musical, and most recently a live-action retelling of the story.

Many people are familiar with the anime version of Sailor Moon, as it aired on Cartoon Network for a number of years.

What many people don't know is that the original manga version of Sailor Moon, crafted by Naoko Takeuchi, is a fantastic and mature manga series. In the English dub version of the story especially, many things are "dumbed down" from the original source material. For example, the homosexual relationship between Sailors Neptune and Uranus is erased in the English dub. Instead, they are referred to as "cousins."

Usagi Tsukino is a lazy middle school student who loves video games. One day, she finds a talking cat, who tells her that she is actually a champion of justice, Sailor Moon. Usagi is incredulous, but when her best friend is attacked, she does not hesitate to save her. Throughout the course of the series, Usagi finds other girls who are Sailor Senshi just like her. While fighting various incarnations of evil, they also deal with school, entrance exams, families, and boys.

Sailor Moon is one of few manga series to highlight a lesbian relationship without making it into a huge deal. Normally, for a manga or anime series to have a homosexual relationship, the story focuses exclusively on the relationship. In the case of Sailor Moon, the genre is very clearly "magical school girl," but Takeuchi allows her characters to interact naturally without detracting from the main plot.

Also, Takeuchi's art books sometimes contain slash-tastic drawings of her characters. She seems to love paring Sailors Mars and Venus together, with their arms around each other, etc. There are some examples of this in the icons below!

Art styles used by manga-ka (people who write/draw manga) are always evolving, but it is difficult to find consistent quality artwork from the mid-1990s. Takeuchi's artwork is a massive exception, and to this day, I think that this series' artwork is the most beautiful I've seen.
Also, Takeuchi makes adorably cute chibi versions of all her characters.

As for the angle, almost the entire main cast is female, as well as the supporting cast. Girls are everywhere, and they save each other and kick ass.


In the U.S., licenses have lapsed on both the anime series and on the manga series. The anime is still relatively easy to find on DVD, but the manga series is becoming increasingly rare. It was published by Mixx (which later became TokyoPop), but I would love to see a re-issuing here, much like they are currently releasing in Japan. Mixx did not do a very good job at binding the pages together. I own all 18 volumes, but many of them are falling apart!

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scribbled mystickeeper at 1:02 PM

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