Does Princess Serenity’s iconic dress look white and gold or blue and black to you?
What about in this Animal Crossing screenshot which isn’t even doctored?
Does Princess Serenity’s iconic dress look white and gold or blue and black to you?
What about in this Animal Crossing screenshot which isn’t even doctored?
The two latest episodes of Sailor Moon R have been added to Hulu and Neon Alley. This week we have episodes 83 and 84 which take place entirely in 30th century Crystal Tokyo! It takes a long time for the story to finally make it to the future but here we are. A lot of stuff that we mostly already figured gets revealed.
Episode 83, The Shocking Future: Demande’s Dark Ambition, introduces us to a world we have previously only seen in dreams and flashbacks. All of the girls assumed it couldn’t really be that bad when they saw this destroyed city in Chibiusa’s mind but this was obviously spot on. Things are very bad. The gang runs into a familiar face, the holographic projection of King Endymion who is the future version of Mamoru. His voice, which sounds nearly identical to Mamoru’s, sounds familiar! Does Toru Furuya as King Endymion sound that much different than Toru Furuya as Mamoru? Anyway, his voice is the one from the dreams that foretold a great calamity if Mamoru didn’t dump Usagi. Just what was the reason for this silly fabricated friction between characters which didn’t really last? Oh he just wanted to test their relationship to make sure it was strong. Sorry but I just don’t see the logic of this and there is no indication that it helped at all. It didn’t change the future, so it seems like it was meant to strengthen their relationship in the past so that… Tuxedo Mask didn’t let Prince Demande kiss Usagi? Well I’m getting ahead with myself. We learn all of the things we kind of already knew. Usagi is Neo Queen Serenity, oh wow! Chibiusa is Usagi and Mamoru’s daughter. Who knew? This surprises everyone and even makes Rei a little mad. Maybe Rei would be the queen of Crystal Tokyo if Usagi hadn’t stolen her boyfriend last season! In a somewhat rushed end of the episode Usagi is kidnapped by Prince Demande who dresses her up a bit like Neo Queen Serenity and tries to use his hypnotic powers to kiss her without consent. It’s a very uncomfortable scene that deals with a pretty serious issue, but Tuxedo Mask comes in to save the day.
Episode 84, Wiseman’s Evil Hand: Chibi-Usa Disappears, has Chibiusa running off while the gang deals with Esmeraude. Esmeraude has been doing a pretty crappy job as villain but it’s okay, she can do more good as a dragon! This way she doesn’t need to be directly killed by the Sailor Guardians. Instead a dragon is killed who they didn’t really know was her. Prince Demande who was trying to sexually assault Usagi in the last episode seems only somewhat put off by Esmeraude’s death, tragically not returning her affections. Meanwhile Chibiusa is traumatized and runs off … to the park. In the past (our present) when Chibiusa runs away she always finds herself in the park. It’s not really clear why this is. But Chibiusa is not in some foreign city. She’s simply in another time. The park may be very familiar to her as it may be the same place she always run to, just from another time. Many landmarks from the future park seem to indicate that it is indeed the same once we often see in the past. Wiseman proceeds to mess with her memory of things. She remembers looking at the Silver Crystal, but not what happened to it. Her views of her family and friends is corrupted to make her think they are all against her. In the final moments of the episode we hear a laugh which sounds somewhat like that of Chibiusa but a bit different. We will see who this is in the next episode.
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The latest episode of Sailor Moon Crystal, Act 16, Abduction – Sailor Mercury, is now available to view for free on Crunchyroll, Hulu and Niconico. This week’s episode is tons of fun with the Tuxedo Mask puppet, some fan service in the form of swimsuits, young Ami and her daddy issues and of course Berthier who may or may not have been an inspiration for Elsa from Frozen.
This episode had a number of differences from it’s original manga version, in changes, omitted scenes and in added content. That said, it also had a lot in common and like the rest of Sailor Moon Crystal is a very faithful adaptation.
In the opening scene of the episode Usagi gets upset at Chibiusa but what she doesn’t do is raise her hand threatening to hit her as she did in the manga. This sort of changes the tone of the next scene where Usagi feels a sense of guilt but not about raising a hand at Chibiusa but instead about not protecting Sailor Mars who is now kidnapped.
Chibiusa runs off and, as usual, hides in the park. Mamoru takes her home and talks to her with his Tuxedo Mask puppet. This puppet has been in the original manga, original anime and even in the latest musical, Petite Étrangère. All of a sudden I wonder just where he go that thing. Is Mamoru such a megalomaniac that he built a puppet of himself? Maybe he found it in a store and finds it so bizarre that products of his alter ego exist that he had to buy one. He uses his ventriloquism to make the puppet talk and also makes the excuse that this is why Luna seems to talk. But why doesn’t Chibiusa expect Luna to talk? We will later learn that one of Chibiusa’s good friends in the future is Diana, a talking cat herself and daughter of Luna and Artemis. Chibiusa also travels with Luna P which looks just like Luna who she must surely know in the future. While Chibiusa has trouble recognizing her mother and father why would she also have trouble with this cat that looks so much like her ball and why would she be at all surprised to hear one talk?
Enter Berthier! She uses dowsing to find water and help with her chess game. Dowsing is not real. This whole arc is riddled with pseudoscience. I understand that within the context of the story these people can use magic but just like UFOs and to a greater fortune telling were the nonsense in the last show dowsing is the nonsense this week. Historically it’s just something that used to be used to find water or minerals underground using items such as a divining rod but when there are modern dowsing products which claim to do things like detect bombs, directly contributing to a loss of lives in war zones, I feel people can do with being reminded that dowsing has no basis in reality.
Those who read the comments on this blog will note that one particular commenter has been asking since the beginning just when we will be getting a beach episode, particularly desiring that we see some of the characters in two piece suits. Well his day has come. This week we see Ami, Naru and Usagi in swimsuits at the pool. In the original manga version we see these three only wearing simple one piece suits but they have been updated a bit for the show. Ami’s suit as seen from the pool seems like a simple one piece, though when seen from behind the design doesn’t appear to be that consistent. This is fitting with how she is usually portrayed in the original anime as well. Naru’s suit is the most interesting as it looks quite a bit like the bikini she wore in episode 23 of the original anime. While Sailor Moon Crystal is frequently manga based it only occasionally takes cues from the original 1992 Sailor Moon anime. This suit also bears a bit of a resemblance to the dress that Naru wears to the ball. Finally we have Usagi’s suit which goes from a one piece in the manga to a two piece bikini here in Sailor Moon Crystal. This seems like blatant fan service as Usagi wears her towel on her head. An awkward thing to do when your goal is anything but exposing your bare midriff to your fans. Apologies for speaking entirely too much about such a silly thing, but if the comments are any indication there are people who consider such things to be quite important.
Another anime original thing which makes it into this episode is Usagi’s inappropriate cheering at a chess tournament. In both the original anime and Sailor Moon Crystal she makes a spectacle while cheering for Ami and is told to be quiet. One background character in this scene looks a bit like Yusuke from Yu Yu Hakusho, written by the husband of Sailor Moon’s creator Naoko Takeuchi.
Berthier is shown to be the the 3rd ranked chess player in the world. Later in the episode Ami beats her. Does this make Ami the 3rd ranked chess player in the world? You would think someone with such a skill would do more than just occasionally play on their iPad! I guess she does have world saving to do. Berthier’s clothing is ridiculous. It’s a full on super villain costume. That’s cool for fighting the forces of good and all but the way she just wears these clothes to a chess tournament like it was nothing is a bit silly.
Speaking of the way Berthier dresses, some have mentioned similarities between her and Elsa from Frozen. See the image included above that explains the parallels between the two. This seems a bit far fetched to me. The controlling of the power and similarities in her relationship to Koan aren’t really the same. She does not encase herself in an ice tower. The similarities are mostly cosmetic and even that could be a coincidence. Elsa and Berthier both have ice powers, and so they dress in blue, a colour associated with cold. They also have white hair or light hair which is also natural for someone with ice powers. The braid is really the biggest similarity going on here. All considered I think Elsa bares more of a passing resemblance to Rosalina from Super Mario Galaxy. Why not just get the Elsa Disney Infinity figure instead of the Rosalina Amiibo which has been so hard to find?
This is a fairly Ami centric episode, as she is the one to get kidnapped this time around. One big addition to the story not in the manga was the inclusion of young Ami and showing more of her father. Young Ami is quite cute and shown being abandoned by her father who is a painter. She is also shown having an interest in playing chess. Sailor Mercury uses a new ability Shine Snow Illusion. This isn’t enough to save her from getting kidnapped. Who will be next?
The next episode is Act 17, Secret – Sailor Jupiter. The episode preview shows some shipping between Makoto and Ittou Asanuma. His scenes were cut from episode 16 but we’ll be seeing more of him next time.
A couple of visually interesting things are seen in the next episode preview. Usagi has no nose in one shot and Chibiusa is wearing a short sleeved version of her blue school uniform. This seemed off to me and a post on the moonsisters.org Facebook page made me realize what is what. Chibiusa’s white school uniform is normally the one that has short sleeves while her blue school uniform has long sleeves.
Keep reading for more images from this episode and the next episode preview.
The latest episode of Sailor Moon Crystal will be available this Saturday February 21st on Crunchyroll, Hulu and Niconico. Act 16, Abduction – Sailor Mercury, will be available at 7pm Japan Standard Time which is 5am Eastern Time, 2am Pacific Time. This week we continue with the story Chibiusa and the Black Moon Clan as Sailor Mercury faces off against Berthier.
This episode will feature Mamoru’s very cool Tuxedo Mask puppet. Where did he get that thing anyway? We learn more about Chibiusa and get a brief look at the future. Berthier, the second of the Ayakashi Sisters, will be facing off against Sailor Mercury in a chess match. More importantly, Ami will be swimming in this episode. That’s right! That guy who always asks in the comments about when there will be a swimsuit episode will finally get some minor satisfaction. This won’t be like in the original anime where we would randomly have beach episodes which were ultimately cut from the English dub, but this will provide for some level of fan service. In the original manga version of this story Ami, Usagi and Naru all appear in one piece swimsuits. Perhaps Luke’s prayers will be answered and these will be animated as two piece suits for Sailor Moon Crystal!
The latest episodes of Sailor Moon R have been added to Hulu and Neon Alley. This week we very slowly make the decision to go to the future as Chibiusa decides to go back to Crystal Tokyo and then we take an entire episode to chill in limbo trying to get there.
Episode 81, The Dark Gate Is Completed? the Targeted Elementary School, introduces us to Chibiusa’s school friends Momoko and Kyuusuke. Momoko is presented as Chibiusa’s good friend, as she will be later in the series. Kyuusuke is kind of along for the ride and will later be seen as having a crush on Momoko. We haven’t gotten much of a look at her circle of friends outside of the main characters from the show but it would seem that part of Chibiusa’s plan to get the Silver Crystal and save the future involves enrolling in the local school and attending each day. We learn in a bit of a flashback to Chibiusa’s first day at school that Kyuusuke gave her the nickname of Chibiusa while teasing her for being small. Chibi is a slang term to mean small person or small child in Japan, so this fits. The Usa part is simply short for Usagi, the name which she got from her mother, whoever that will turn out to be. Esmeraude has filled Chibiusa’s school with evil energy, causing children to hilariously attack each other. This brings us to our villains Chiral and Achiral. These two appear as members of the Black Moon Clan in the manga. Sailor Moon kills them with her Moon Princess Halation which would, if they are humans, be the only people she kills in the entire season. While Sailor Moon kills many Droids she has a great record when it comes to humans this season. She heals the Ayakashi Sisters one by one. For liability purposes it is fire and less so Esmeraude that kills Rubeus. Without getting into spoilers Esmeraude is not technically killed as a human and then Saphir and Demande do not die by Sailor Moon’s hand. So what are these characters? They have gems on them which indicates that they may be Droids, but are not clearly referred to as such in the episode and we do not see them created or get turned into a pile of ash like other Droids. I pondered this question for years until finally I saw the Sailor Moon R Memorial. The Memorials are single season summaries narrated by Luna which were released on video. In the Sailor Moon R Memorial all of the season’s Droids are listed including, as the caption in the image below shows, Droid Chiral and Achiral. Indeed, Sailor Moon’s hands remain unsullied by murder for the Sailor Moon R season! As the episode wraps up Chibiusa decides it’s time to go back to the future and save her family.
Episode 82, Journey to the Future: Battle in the Space-Time Corridor, covers our long trip to the future! I remember how excited I was, back in the 90s, having waited so long for new episodes and watching VHS fan subs of Sailor Moon R. I just wanted to see them get to the future already! How exciting that we are finally going, and we spend a whole damned episode just traveling through time! Chibiusa has finally decided to bring the Sailor Team and Tuxedo Mask to the future with her to rescue her mother with the help of the Key of Space-Time. This doesn’t go as smoothly as one would hope. First things first, we see Sailor Pluto! While she had a decent part in the Black Moon arc of the manga Sailor Pluto doesn’t get much attention during this season of the anime, as her appearance is limited to what we saw in a dream and her protecting the Space-Time Door. She tries to attack Sailor Moon, not recognizing her, but stops when Chibiusa interjects. Sailor Pluto sort of exists outside of time so it’s not really clear how old she is or just what time she comes from or goes to, but it doesn’t really matter in this season’s context as she just exists in this vortex which is between time. What follows is a lengthy walk through the Space-Time Corridor where it’s terribly important not to let go of your partner’s hand, only that is exactly what happens. Chibiusa sees a familiar looking face in her mother who turns out to be a Droid. The monster is killed and everything is great until they get to the other side of the corridor. It turns out that really terrible view of Crystal Tokyo we saw in Chibiusa’s dream was actually incredibly accurate. The future really sucks and everything is really wrecked. More on that next week when we actually get to spend a little time in the future!
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This weekend is Katsucon in National Harbor Maryland. On Friday, February 13th, Viz hosted a Sailor Moon panel in which the dub cast for Sailor Moon R was announced. The panel was hosted by Charlene Ingram and included Cherami Leigh, the voice of Sailor Venus, Amanda Miller, the voice Sailor Jupiter, Cristina Vee, the voice of Sailor Mars and Robbie Daymond, the voice of Tuxedo Mask.
The new actors who will be joining the show for Sailor Moon R are Johanna Luis as the alien An also known as Natsumi Ginga, Brian Beacock as the Alien Ail also known as Seijirou Ginga, Sandy Fox as Chibiusa and Veronica Taylor as Sailor Pluto. Veronica Taylor is likely the best known of these voice actors for providing the voice of Ash Ketchum in Pokémon.
You can watch the panel on Ustream below:
The first season of Viz’s new Sailor Moon dub is currently available on DVD and Blu-Ray in two half season sets. Buy them from Amazon using the links below to support the site:
Source: The Fandom Post
Jennifer Cihi, a singer who performed a number of songs for the original English dub of the Sailor Moon anime, will be making an appearance at Anime Zakka, a comic book shop in downtown Boston, on February 20th. Details posted on the Sailor Moon News Facebook Page mention that this free event will be an opportunity to listen to Sailor Moon songs, get an autograph, chat and more.
Anime Zakka has two locations in Boston. This event will be taking place at the location at 350 Newbury Street on Friday February 20th from 5 to 7pm.
Jennifer Cihi, often credited as being the singing voice of Sailor Moon, appears in a number of songs played throughout the series as well as on the three soundtracks which have been released. Her name is credited as Sailor Moon, Princess Serena and Sailor Mars as she has done the vocals for “I Wanna Be A Star!”, “My Only Love”, “Carry On”, “It’s A New Day”, “Call My Name”, “The Power of Love”, “I Want Someone to Love”, “I Want to Hold Your Hand” and “Who Do You Think You Are?”.
These CDs are out of print. You can buy them from resellers on Amazon using the links below. Many songs are also available on iTunes.
Tracey Moore, the original English voice of Sailor Moon, will be appearing at Tsukino-Con this weekend, February 13th to the 15th, at the University of Victoria in Victoria British Columbia. Though she was not the voice of Sailor Moon for very long, she was the first to have the role. Tracey Moore provided the voice of Sailor Moon for the first 11 dubbed episode as well as two others, Dangerous Dollies and Jupiter Comes Thundering In. During this short time she not only provided the voice of Sailor Moon but also acted as the voice director for the series. Roland Parliament, the voice of Melvin and author of Sailor Moon Reflections, filled in as voice director once she left. Tracey Moore also voiced one of the Doom and Gloom Girls, the monsters who killed the Sailor Scouts at the end of the first season.
Also appearing at the convention is Kyle Hebert who recently voiced the Priest and Rainbow Crystal carrier who turned into the monster Boxy in Viz’s English dub of Sailor Moon.
The Pretty Guardian Sailor Moon Petite Étrangère musical was released on DVD on January 28th in Japan. This is a region 2 DVD so if you’re thinking of getting it, make sure you have a DVD player that you can watch it on. The DVD can be imported from sites like Amazon Japan or CD Japan. It will cost a bit over $50 US plus shipping fees. If you don’t speak Japanese, I’m sure you can find a subtitled version of this musical somewhere.
The main feature, the musical itself, runs in at 2 hours and 36 minutes. This is the second of the latest round of musicals focusing on the story of Chibiusa, Sailor Pluto, the Black Moon Clan and Crystal Tokyo. Like with the first musical, La reconquista, it features an all female cast, even for the male characters. This DVD only has Japanese audio included and no subtitles so it may not be worth much to English speaking fans. The video quality isn’t great. There is no Blu-Ray and the video is interlaced. I can’t say I feel it’s much different than the feed I watched on Niconico when it was first playing. Judge for yourself with the screenshots below.
The performance is followed by footage of the cast members speaking to the audience.
The second disk includes the special features. Its total duration is 84 minutes and spans many different parts, each of which I will briefly explain. All features are in Japanese only and as I do not speak the language, I can’t say I have a full grasp of the content.
The first bit of footage shows various clips of Chibiusa throughout the musical, first starting with her running around among the audience and going through the entire story. This lasts roughly 15 minutes.
Next is footage from a July 21st live performance which appears to be taking place at some sort of mall in Japan. The first song performed is Ai No Starshine (Starshine of Love) followed by Moonlight Densetsu, the theme song to the original Sailor Moon anime. As this only covers two songs it runs for about 6 minutes.
This is followed by an interview between Fumio Osano, Sailor Moon’s editor also known as Osabu, Satomi Ookubo, the actress who plays Sailor Moon, and Yuga Yamato, the actress who plays Tuxedo Mask. This is a 10 minute interview.
Next is footage of the 6 actresses who play the Sailor Guardians, Sailor Moon, Mercury, Mars, Jupiter, Venus and Pluto, sitting around, drinking juice and chatting for 40 minutes. This is pretty long to watch if you don’t speak any Japanese but I imagine if you know what they’re saying it is much more interesting.
We then have the two actresses who played Chibiusa, Kokoro Kuge and Airi Kanda, going around and interviewing various other actresses for about 10 minutes. It may not be obvious from the musical itself but yes there are two actresses to play Chibiusa and Sailor Chibi Moon. This is standard for earlier musicals as well.
Finally the last clip is something that I couldn’t quite figure out. It has all actresses from the musical one by one talking while holding what appears to be an autograph card signed by them. I don’t fully understand the purpose of this. Perhaps the cards were part of a giveaway of some kind. This lasts for about 8 minutes as we work our way through all of the actresses.
The packaging is pretty standard for a DVD. It comes with a 26 page booklet which includes character bios and the words to songs from the musical.
It’s difficult for me to recommend this DVD to most of my readers. It’s region 2, not playable in most DVD players outside of Japan. It’s in Japanese only and the quality isn’t good enough to be something worth watching raw instead of the decent quality subbed versions available. If you’re a hard core collector of all things Sailor Moon, you’ll probably just buy it anyway as I did.
Keep reading for more images from the menus and photos of the packaging and all pages of the included booklet.