Monday, 7 July 2014

Magic Monday: Sailor Moon Crystal

Sailor Moon (or Pretty Guardian Sailor Moon) is a manga series written and illustrated by Naoko Takeuchi from 1991 to 1997 and was originally made into an anime series that ran (in Japan) from 1992 to 1997 followed by three feature films, three specials and three short films. In 2003 Toei Company even created a live action adaptation of the series in an attempt to update it and although it seemed to follow the story line of the manga quite well to begin with over the course of the 49 episodes it begun to greatly differ from the story line of the manga or even the original TV series. (As you read on please be aware of potential story spoilers and lots of possible picture spoilers as well!)

Now though the moment we've been waiting for since it was announced back in 2012, is here! Originally announced to be released worldwide in the summer of 2013 amid the 20th anniversary celebrations the second anime adaptation of Sailor Moon, now called "Pretty Guardian Sailor Moon Crystal" had been delayed but is now here and will be released every first and third Saturday of each month for the next year. After watching the original anime for most of my childhood I cannot explain how excited I've been for this to happen, sadly most of the series I watched while younger was the mostly cringe-worthy DIC media English dub with parts missing and the cheesy "Sailor Says" added in I was lucky enough to see the subbed versions without scenes translated badly or missing altogether and now with this new re-imagining I get to watch the whole story unfold again!

So how is it you ask?
It's completely awesome of course. A few things niggled me but not enough for me not to enjoy the show. I wonder how many people will actually be watching this story line for the first time as it was so hugely popular back in my day (and afterwards) as it wasn't really until I re-watched the older 1992 first episode that I started to notice anything wrong with it all. So, where do I start?


The opening has truly been updated and is fantastic, its a catchy piece of music for the show without being too cheesy (especially for those of us who remember the original English dub!) The animation is gorgeous, it does mean that so far we haven't seen any of the classic Usagi "derp" faces or the cute little added symbols like the original and to be honest I don't think it would fit well with the much cleaner smoother art style. My first reaction to the whole episodes were purely the words "It's sooo pretty!"

Character wise we've only really gotten to know Usagi, a little about Luna and briefly a few of the side characters such as Usagi's family and friends, Mamouru and at least a couple of lines from Motoki but at first glance everyone seems very much the same, Usagi, despite being much prettier now is still clumsy and very much a cry baby which is a part of her character and something I'm glad they didn't choose to cut out.

 Among other things the new transformation sequence was absolutely beautiful! Which is fantastic as I'm sure we'll be seeing these scenes a lot.

One of the things that did niggle me a bit was the story just didn't seem as strong and at times very opaque, I know a huge amount of of people watching will already know most of the storyline but it just seemed very vague and not as detailed as it was portrayed in the original anime. Also the fact that by the first episode we have pretty much no doubt who Tuxedo Mask is, or the princess, it was always fairly obvious before but there was a bit of wiggle room, whereas very little if any was left in the reboot. Nether the less I thoroughly enjoyed the episodes and look forward to many many more! I hope you all enjoyed it as well, let me know what you thought in the comments, until next time have some more episode one screen shots!

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