October 4th 2003, 10 years ago, the first episode of the live action Pretty Guardian Sailor Moon TV series premiered in Japan. The show didn’t achieve much success with a North American audience but many fans did have a fondness for it. With a total of 49 episodes the series ran for about a year and also had two direct to video specials and a live stage show, along with a lot of merchandise.
The story of this series was a retelling of the Dark Kingdom storyline from the manga and anime. While at the beginning there were many similarities, the series quickly defied expectations and did it’s own thing going so far as to introduce new variations of classic characters like Sailor Luna, Dark Mercury, Mio Kuroki and Princess Sailor Moon. The effects were a bit cheap and Luna was a plush most of the time but the show still had a certain quality to it that made it very much Sailor Moon.
I am happy to call myself a fan of the series and enjoyed it immensely. The few issues I had with it paled in comparison to some of it’s great aspects such as the powerful story lines that were unique to the show and of course the lovely Keiko Kitagawa. If you’ve never taken the time to give this show a proper chance I would suggest you do so. What else are you going to do with your time while you wait for the new anime? The complete series and specials are available with English subtitles from Miss Dream. There aren’t many options to support the series in North America but you can always import the DVDs from Amazon Japan.