An art book released to celebrate the nearly 5 year old 20th anniversary of Sailor Moon was released yesterday, October 20th, in Japan. I received my copy yesterday and was very pleased with the contents. From the initial description of the product it wasn’t terribly clear what would be involved. Some were claiming it would just be a review of the Pretty Guardian Sailor Moon Exhibit at Roppongi Hills and others that it would just a product catalogue. It is both those things but so much more. It is packed full of information and images from products offered throughout the years as well as details and interviews from the original anime and musicals. This 160 page art book is packed densely full of 25 years of Sailor Moon goodness that fans will all surely get a kick out of. You can buy the book online from sources like Amazon Japan and CD Japan for 2480 yen, about $24 US plus shipping.
Overall the book is of a great quality. I was concerned when the official site referred to it as a Mook, short for Magazine Book, that it might be cheap. It is soft cover but the jacket and pages are of good quality. The book if 160 pages of full colour with a good layout. I’ll break up the contents by section to give an idea of what’s involved. I can’t easily include photos of every page, but I’ll include a lot of samples within the post and at the end to give a good idea.
The first section, encompassing about 30 pages, is named “Return of the Sailor Moon”. Getting past this ridiculous Donald Trumpesque superfluous usage of “The”, this is an overview of the Roppongi Hills Sailor Moon Exhibit which was held in Tokyo from April 16th to June 19th of this year. This includes an in depth look at the exposition which includes in itself a general overview of Sailor Moon since 1991. This spans the manga, anime, merchandise and musicals. Included in this event was a special shop with tons of Sailor Moon goods. A catalogue of all of that merchandise is included as well. A Sailor Moon Cafe was also set up the event. Details on the menu and photos of some of these beautiful food options are included.
Next is the “Sailor Moon Goods CompleteWorks” which is about 40 pages full of merchandise which has been released since Sailor Moon’s 20th Anniversary revival. This doesn’t cover older merchandise, which is included in some of the exhibit photos and later in the book, but is a thorough catalogue of everything that has been out since Sailor Moon Crystal was announced. This includes toys, clothes, food, media like Blu-Rays and CDs, and jewellery released since 2013. A lot of this stuff is still available to purchase in Japan.
The next 46 pages are about the original Sailor Moon anime. This is referred to as the Sailor Moon 1992-1997 Animation Characters Encyclopedia which sums it up pretty well. We start out with biographies on all of our favourite characters. Sailor Moon gets four pages, Sailor Mercury, Mars, Jupiter, Venus and Chibi Moon get two a piece, Sailor Uranus, Neptune, Saturn, Pluto and Tuxedo Mask get a page each and then the Sailor Starlights and other characters get less than a page. These are all accompanied by a number of screenshots and character art from the series. We then get an overview of the films and a season by season breakdown of all episodes. Also included at the end of this section is a full page interview with Shoko Nakagawa, the voice of Diana from Sailor Moon Crystal who sang a song on the 20th Anniversary Tribute Album. Since she doesn’t have anything to do with the original Sailor Moon anime this interview is separate from that chapter.
The next section, which is the rest of the book, is dubbed the “Sailor Moon Movement Graffiti”. I won’t pretend this name makes sense. I can’t even try to understand what this is meant to mean and it is itself divided into a few sections which I will treat as being separate. The section begins with a timelines of events occurring since the 20th Anniversary. This is mostly Sailor Moon Crystal and Sailor Moon Musical related events though there are merchandise details included as well.
The next 10 pages or so are all about Sailor Moon Crystal. We have general information about the series, some character art and interviews with all of the main cast. This includes the voices of Sailor Moon, Mercury, Mars, Jupiter, Venus, Chibi Moon and Pluto.
Then we have information about the musicals, both new and old, packed full of photos and interviews. This includes interviews with all of the cast of the first three Sailor Moon Musicals. There is a lengthy interview with Anza, who played Sailor Moon in 13 of the older musicals, as well as some other lady who I don’t recognize. (Update: The other woman is Akiko Kosaka, a composer who wrote many songs from the original anime, the musicals and Sailor Moon Crystal)
The next few pages are a mixed bag. We have a world map showing products from around the world. What does North America have? The Sailor Moon RPG book and a children’s Play-a-Sound book that has little buttons that you push so that it makes noise. Both points of the map are in Canada. The RPG book is somewhere in the sparsely populated North West Territories or Nunavut and the Play-a-Sound book is somewhere in Manitoba.
Am I that Canadian for owning both of these?
There’s a map of Tokyo which shows many Sailor Moon locations with photos of where they are now! There is then a timeline which covers the manga and anime years and some of the products released over that time. As a very small footnote in the corner of the last page covering this time is a blurb about the live action Sailor Moon series which was released in 2003 and 2004. I was hoping to have better coverage of that series in this book but unfortunately that was not the case.
The final 6 pages are all of older merchandise from back in the 1990s. Most of the toys shown are now incredibly rare and very expensive if you’re lucky enough to find them. Let’s be glad we have all of this new merchandise which is only somewhat unaffordable!
Overall I thought this was a great book. It has an overview of so many different facets of the series! While there isn’t a ton on the manga or live action series the book makes up for it by going into great details on merchandise, the anime and the musicals. I recommend that any fans who were on the fence about buying this book get it! You won’t be disappointed.
Keep reading for more photos of the book. To see the rest, buy it for yourself!