Sailor Moon Crystal Season III volume 1 Japanese Blu-Ray review

Sailor Moon Crystal Season III Blu-Ray vol. 1 - Contents

The first of three volumes of Sailor Moon Crystal Season III is now available on Blu-Ray. Volume 1 was released on June 29th in Japan. This is a Japanese language release so there is no English audio or English subtitles. You can import it from sites like Amazon Japan for 6909 yen, about $67 US. This release features four episodes, where the first 26 episodes of the series were only released on disks containing two episodes a piece. This time we get Act 27 parts 1 and 2 as well as Acts 28 and 29. The set comes in a smaller package than the earlier releases, which should fit more conveniently on your shelf. It also includes a 24 page special booklet with interviews and art.

Sailor Moon Crystal Season III Blu-Ray vol. 1 - Cover

The episodes included are Act 27, Infinity 1 – Premonition – First Part and Second Part, Act 28, Infinity 2 – Ripples, and Act 29 – Infinity 3 – Two New Soldiers. This covers the introduction to the Death Busters, the Sailor Guardians facing off against Eudial and Mimete, meeting Hotaru, Haruka and Michiru as well as Sailor Uranus and Neptune. With the first 26 episodes, plagued by sloppy inconsistent animation, a number of minor improvements and changes were done to the animation for the Blu-Ray release. None of this is present here. If you’ve seen the streaming version you’ve seen the version which is presented on this release. It seems they put a bit more time and money into the animation the first time so there was no need for updates.

Sailor Moon Crystal Season III Blu-Ray vol. 1 - DVD

The episodes include an optional audio commentary. These four episodes all feature commentary by Kotono Mitsuishi, the voice of Sailor Moon, Junko Minagawa, the voice of Sailor Uranus, and Sayaka Ohara, the voice of Sailor Neptune.

Sailor Moon Crystal Season III Blu-Ray vol. 1 - Special Booklet - Cover

As with earlier releases a 24 page special booklet is included. The contents are somewhat like what we’ve seen before. There are episode summaries, interviews and character designs. Osabu’s page is not present in this booklet. There are a total of five interviews included. These are with Kotono Mitsuishi, the voice of Sailor Moon, Hisaka Kanemoto, the voice of Sailor Mercury, Rina Sato, the voice of Sailor Mars, Ami Koshimizu, the voice of Sailor Jupiter, and Shizuka Ito, the voice of Sailor Venus.

Sailor Moon Crystal Season III Blu-Ray vol. 1 - Special Booklet - Pages 18 and 19 - Rei and Makoto designs

All in all this set is a more worthwhile purchase than the previous sets were. The cost is about the same and there are twice as many episodes. Without any changes in animation though, there isn’t much to get from collecting these when the streaming version is subtitled and free, though not quite at Blu-Ray quailty. Further now that we know that English Blu-Ray sets are coming with entire story arcs costing close to what a single Japanese disc does, it seems a little pointless for an English speaking North American fan to buy these Japanese only releases. All said we haven’t seen the English release yet. It seems unlikely that it will be plagued with terrible video quality like all North American releases of the original series have been, but that’s still a possibility. We may find that this is the better quality set to have when all is said and done. The French DVD and Blu-Ray came out last week and seems to be of exceptional quality though, so it seems likely the English release will be the same.

The next set will be released on July 27th and can be pre-ordered from sites like Amazon Japan. It is similarly priced at 6909 yen. It will include four episodes, Acts 30 to 33, bringing us to Sailor Moon’s transformation into Super Sailor Moon and the first flashback look at Sailor Saturn.

Keep reading for more photos of the packaging and all pages of the included special booklet.

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Sailor Moon Crystal Deluxe Limited Edition Blu-Ray vol. 12 Review

Sailor Moon Crystal Blu-Ray Vol. 12 - Cover

The last volume of Sailor Moon Crystal was released on Blu-Ray last month, on September 9th. I’ve dragged my feet on this review so much that the next disk, volume 13, is released today in Japan. Volume 12 can be purchased from sites such as Amazon Japan for 5194 yen, about $43 US. The next and final volume can also be ordered from Amazon Japan for 5994 yen, about $50 US. As always this release contains only two episodes, in this case Act 23 and 24, in Japanese only and the cover art included is of Black Lady, Chibiusa’s older and eviler self.

Sailor Moon Crystal Blu-Ray Vol. 12 - Contents

The charm included with this release is Sailor Moon’s Crystal Star, her transformation broach for this story arc.

Sailor Moon Crystal Blu-Ray Vol. 12 - Crystal Star Charm

Two episodes are included on this disk. Act 23 – Covert Maneuvers – Wiseman, and Act 24 – Attack – Black Lady. The video quality as always is great. As with other DVD and Blu-Ray releases some minor changes to the animation have taken place since the streaming version. Nothing of significance is included with these particular episodes. Nothing changes any of the scenes in any major way. The biggest change with Act 24 is the colour and brightness for certain scenes. As always you can check out Crystal Comparisons for screenshots which show the changes for any particular episode, including Acts 23 and 24.

Sailor Moon Crystal Blu-Ray Vol. 12 - Special booklet - Pages 14 and 15 - Character designs

A 20 page full colour booklet is included once again. Unfortunately I am unable to identify the subjects of the first interview. The names are Nozomi Matsuura and Yukiko Kariya. This web site indicates that they work for Bandai, but no other details are given. The second interview is with the voice actors playing the Black Moon Clan. This includes Mamoru Miyano, the voice of Prince Demande, Hiroki Takahashi, the voice of Rubeus, Tsubasa Yonaga, the voice of Saphir, and Houko Kawashima, the voice of Esmeraude. Also included in the booklet are the usual episode summaries for Act 23 and 24, character designs for Black Lady, Prince Demande and Saphir, backgrounds and screenshots from the episodes and a page for Fumio Osano, Osabu.

These episodes include an audio commentary featuring cast and crew from the show. This includes Munehisa Sakai, director of the first 26 episodes of Sailor Moon Crystal, Hisako Kanemoto, the voice of Sailor Mercury, Rina Sato, the voice of Sailor Mars, Ami Koshimizu, the voice of Sailor Jupiter, and Shizuka Ito, the voice of Sailor Venus.

Should you get this? Should you pay over $50 to buy and ship this set with only two episodes in a language you can’t speak when an English and Japanese version will eventually be released for much less and you can watch the series for free online in the mean time? That’s your call!

Keep reading for more images of this set’s packaging including images of all pages of the included special booklet.

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Sailor Moon Crystal Blu-Ray vol. 9 review

Sailor Moon Crystal Blu-Ray vol. 9  - Packaging

I’m a little late with this review but the latest volume of Sailor Moon Crystal, volume 9, was released on Blu-Ray on June 10th. Like with other releases this only includes two episodes, in this case Act 17 and 18. These stories, part of the Black Moon story arc, focus on Sailor Jupiter and Sailor Venus. The cover for this release features all of the Sailor Guardians together in their civilian school uniforms. The volume 10 box art will feature the often neglected Sailor Pluto. You can buy volume 9 from Amazon Japan for 5194 yen, about $42 US, plus shipping. Pre-orders for volume 10 will be shipped out tomorrow.

Sailor Moon Crystal Blu-Ray vol. 9 - Charm - Sailor Mars's Star Power Stick

The charm included with this release is Sailor Mars’s Star Power Stick. We will likely be seeing Sailor Jupiter and Venus’s Star Power Sticks as the next two charms.

Sailor Moon Crystal Blu-Ray vol. 9 - Cover art

The contents of the disk are pretty standard. Two episodes are included. Act 17, Secret – Sailor Jupiter and Act 18 – Invasion – Sailor Venus. Video quality is great, as always. There are animation changes from the original streaming versions which are mostly minor and cosmetic. Crystal Comparisons is a great site to check out to compare the two versions. A frame which had Chibiusa incorrectly wearing a short sleeved blue uniform has been corrected to have her with the white uniform she wears in the rest of the scene. A scene in Act 17 had Usagi using the Moon Stick instead of the Cutie Moon Rod to use Moon Princess Halation. This has not been corrected for the Blu-Ray version.

Commentary are included as always. On these episodes we have Munehisa Sakai, the director for the series, as well as Ami Koshimizu, the voice of Sailor Jupiter, and Shizuka Ito, the voice of Sailor Venus. As always I do not speak Japanese so I can’t really comment on the quality of the commentary itself.

Sailor Moon Crystal Blu-Ray vol. 9 - Special Booklet - Pages 6 & 7 - Act 18 summary

Once again a 20 page full colour special booklet is included. This book includes episode summaries and art for the included episodes 17 and 18. The first interview is with Revo, the composer for Sailor Moon Crystal’s opening theme Moon Pride. The other interview is with Ryo Hirohashi, the voice of Luna, and Yohei Obayashi, the voice of Artemis. Character art included shows Luna, Calaveras, Petz, Asanuma and a bunch of items.

Sailor Moon Crystal Blu-Ray vol. 9 - Special Booklet - Pages 8 and 9 - Screenshots

It’s hard to recommend buying this. Episodes are still available to stream for free online. This is a Japanese only release with no subtitles. It’s probably worth the wait to get the English version which Viz will be released at some undetermined time in the future. But you don’t need me to tell you whether or not to buy something.

Keep reading for more images from this set including photos of all pages of the included special book.

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Listen to previews of every song from the Sailor Moon Crystal Character Song Collection CD

Sailor Moon Crystal Character Song Collection - Sea of Fire by Rei Hino

We previously announced that a Sailor Moon Crystal Character Song Collection CD would be released on April 29th. Previews of all songs have been posted to the official Sailor Moon Instagram page. The first 9 tracks posted match the names given in the track listing earlier. The final song was previously posted to YouTube. The clips on Instagram are all 15 seconds, the maximum length for videos on the site, but with a sample of every track we get a good idea of what’s in store for next week.

Sailor Moon Crystal Character Song Collection - I'm Going Down by the Shitennou

All video clips are embedded below.

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Check out a preview of the Sailor Moon Crystal Character Song Collection CD

Sailor Moon Crystal Character Song Collection

A Sailor Moon Crystal Character Song Collection CD will be released on April 29th. A preview of this CD has been posted to the Official Sailor Moon site. Just what is this? This is not music or songs from Sailor Moon Crystal but rather songs performed by the voice actors from the show. The old Sailor Moon Anime frequently had these and occasionally included them in the series. The site mentions that it has been nearly 20 years since the release of a Character Music Collection. This should be a surprise to fans of the 2003 Sailor Moon Live Action series which had many albums and singles of character songs by the main cast.

The full track listing in Japanese is on the Sailor Moon official site. There are 10 tracks in total. Songs will be performed by the voices of Sailor Moon by Kotono Mitsuishi, Sailor Mercury by Hisako Kanemoto, Sailor Mars by Rina Sato, Sailor Jupiter by Ami Koshimizu, Sailor Venus by Shizuka Ito, Tuxedo Mask by Kenji Nojima, Jadeite by Daisuke Kishio, Nephrite by Kosuke Toriumi, Zoisite by Masaya Matsukaze and Kunzite by Eiji Takemoto. All of the Sailor Guardians have their own solo tracks, as does Tuxedo Mask. The Shitennou all perform together on one track. Two duets are done, one with Sailor Mercury and Sailor Jupiter and the other with Sailor Mars and Sailor Venus. The final track has all of the Sailor Guardians performing together.

Sailor Moon Crystal Character Song Collection

You can preorder the CD from Amazon Japan or CD Japan for 3240 yen, about $27 US.

Sailor Moon Crystal Deluxe Limited Edition Blu-Ray vol. 6 review

Sailor Moon Blu-Ray vol. 6 - Packaging

The 6th Sailor Moon Crystal Deluxe Edition Blu-Ray set was released on March 11th. It can be purchased on Amazon Japan and CD Japan. MSRP is 7020 yen, about $59 US dollars. If you’re thinking of importing this keep in mind it is in Japanese only and there are no subtitles. The disk will play in North American Blu-Ray players for this who still want to buy it. There is also a regular edition Blu-Ray and DVD that will be released April 8th, when vol. 7 is being released in a Deluxe Limited Edition set. The DVDs will not likely play in a North American region 1 DVD player.

Sailor Moon Blu-Ray vol. 6 - Contents

As with other volumes the disk comes in a collectible box. This one features a silhouette of Tuxedo Mask on the cover. The cover of the disk itself has an image of Usagi and Tuxedo Mask on it.

Sailor Moon Blu-Ray vol. 6 - Sailor Moon's transformation brooch charm

Every set comes with a charm which goes on the charm bracelet included with volume 1. This release includes Sailor Moon’s transformation brooch. This is the second Sailor Moon item included as volume 1 had Sailor Moon’s Moon Stick.

Sailor Moon Blu-Ray vol. 6 - Booklet - Pages 12 and 13

A 24 page full colour booklet is also included. Amongst the pages are episode summaries, character art for Tuxedo Mask, the Shitennou and Reika, interviews with Yasuhara Takanashi, music composer for the series, and Kenji Nojima, the voice of Tuxedo Mask as well as a page by Fumio Osano, Osabu. Photographs of all pages in this booklet are included at the bottom of this post.

Sailor Moon Blu-Ray vol. 6 - Booklet - Pages 14 and 15

The contents of the disk aren’t terribly exciting. Two episodes are included as usual. This time we have Act 11, Reunion – Endymion, and Act 12, Enemy – Queen Metaria. Many fans took issue with the many changes in Act 12 hoping they would be corrected with the video release but this not the case. Sailor Venus still does not kill Queen Beryl. Sailor Moon still breaks Beryl’s necklace with the sword. The Shitennou still die. Kunzite still says something that sounds like penis. Most of the video releases have some minor updates to the animation. Though I did not notice any specific changes with these episodes it’s likely they are updated as others had been.

Sailor Moon Blu-Ray vol. 6 - Disk

There is an audio commentary on this disk. I don’t speak Japanese so it’s hard for me to tell exactly what is going on or even who is present. I would seem that the voice actresses for Sailor Mars, Rina Sato, and Sailor Jupiter, Ami Koshimizu are present. There is also a man who’s identity I couldn’t figure out.

This set will likely appeal to fans with a lot of money or who feel they must have every bit of Sailor Moon on video. The video quality is better than the streaming version but is that difference really worth buying something in a language you can’t understand? I leave that call to you because at this point if you’re likely to buy this you probably already have the other volumes.

Keep reading for more images of the packaging including photos of all pages of the included booklet.

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Sailor Moon Crystal Deluxe Limited Edition Blu-Ray vol. 4 review

Sailor Moon Crystal Blu-Ray vol. 4 - Box

The 4th volume of the Sailor Moon Crystal Deluxe Limited Edition Blu-Ray was released in Japan on January 14th. Because I’m irresponsible with my money I’ve purchased this, so here is my review. The set is Japanese audio and contains just two episodes, Act 7, Mamoru Chiba – Tuxedo Mask and Act 8, Minako – Sailor V. It comes with a 24 page full colour booklet and a charm of Sailor Jupiter’s transformation item in a decorative box.

Sailor Moon Crystal Blu-Ray vol. 4 - Contents

As with other releases, minor changes to the animation are included. This one it no different, though some of the changes here are more considerable. One of my favourite parts of act 7 is the part where Umino drops in uninvited to a conversation between Usagi, Makoto and Ami to talk about Sailor V. He’s ultimately creepy and for some unexplained reason is a black shadowy figure with yellow eyes and a mouth, looking something like a Heartless from the Kingdom Hearts games. For whatever reason this has been fixed up for the Blu-Ray release so that he is just normal looking, though still intensely creepy, Umino. While changes in the past were largely cosmetic, this is one that is a little more intrusive and something I’m not very comfortable with.

Sailor Moon Crystal Act 7 - Creepy Umino looks like a heartless

Sailor Moon Crystal Act. 7 Blu-Ray - Umino is less creepy than in the streaming version

Other changes in the episode were not as big a deal. Act 7 contains what I would consider to be the worst animation of the series to date. Some of those shots have been fixed up, but a lot of the really terrible looking shots remain. An error that occurred in the original streaming version of act 7 was that Sailor Venus was wearing Sailor V’s uniform when seen from behind but then Sailor Venus’s orange uniform when seen from the front. This has been fixed to correctly show Sailor Venus’s uniform for all angles. It was unclear it this had been intended or not, as the idea might have been that at first Sailor Venus looked like Sailor V, but upon closer investigation was actually wearing a different costume. This wasn’t really what the scene seemed to insinuate so it’s a decent thing to change. I didn’t notice anything but fairly cosmetic changes to act 8.

Sailor Moon Crystal Act 7 - Sailor V

Sailor Moon Crystal Act. 7 Blu-Ray - Sailor Venus is no longer dressed as Sailor V

The rest of the content was pretty much as expected. The cover of this one includes an image of Sailor Jupiter. The charm included, to go with the charm bracelet included in the first volume, is of Sailor Jupiter’s transformation item and bow.

Sailor Moon Crystal Blu-Ray vol. 4 - Sailor Jupiter charm

Also included as always is the full colour booklet. It includes interviews with Yukie Sako, animation director and character designer and Ami Koshimizu, the voice of Sailor Jupiter. There are also episode summaries, production art and a special page by Fumio Osano as always. Photos of all pages of the book are included at the bottom of this post.

Sailor Moon Crystal Blu-Ray vol. 4 - Booklet - Page 12 and 13

The disk itself includes the two episodes, act 7 and 8, as well as and audio commentary for each. The commentary track is in Japanese with no subtitles so I can’t really comment on it. From a brief listen I can tell that voice actors Kenji Nojima, Tuxedo Mask, and Shizuka Ito, Sailor Venus, are on this one as well as some other Japanese people who worked on the show who’s names and jobs you will quickly figure out if you can understand the commentary.

Sailor Moon Crystal Blu-Ray vol. 4 - Disk

You can import this disk from online stores such as Amazon Japan, CD Japan or YesAsia for as low as 5194 yen, which is about $45 US, though shipping can be considerable on some sites. The regular edition Blu-Ray and DVD versions will be released on February 11th if you’re feeling cheap. With only two episodes included as always I can’t really recommend buying these when a free an legal way to support the show always exists with the streaming options. If you’re hardcore about the show and video quality well you’ve probably bought other volumes so I don’t need to tell you what to do.

Keep reading for more images of the set and photos of all pages of the included booklet.

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Sailor Moon Crystal voice actors and character artwork plus new musical information

New character designs for Sailor Jupiter, Sailor Mercury, Sailor Moon, Sailor Mars and Sailor Venus from Sailor Moon Crystal

The Sailor Moon live event featuring new information about the upcoming Sailor Moon musical and Sailor Moon anime is complete and with that we have a great deal of new information. For the new anime, Sailor Moon Crystal, we have some new character art for all five of the main cast as well as the full cast listing. Most notable is the return of Kotono Mitsuishi, the original voice of Sailor Moon from the 1992 Sailor Moon anime, who will be reprising her role as Usagi in Sailor Moon Crystal. This was heavily insinuated at the original event announcing the new anime but now we have official confirmation.

New character designs for Sailor Jupiter, Sailor Mercury, Sailor Moon, Sailor Mars and Sailor Venus from Sailor Moon Crystal

New voice actresses will be joining the show for the voices of Sailor Mercury, Sailor Mars, Sailor Jupiter and Sailor Venus. The new cast will include Hisako Kanemoto as Sailor Mercury, Rina Sato as Sailor Mars, Ami Koshimizu as Sailor Jupiter and Shizuka Ito as Sailor Venus. Click on their names to view their Wikipedia pages and see what roles they’ve done in the past.

The cast of Sailor Moon Petite Étrangère

In addition to the new information about the new Sailor Moon anime Sailor Moon Crystal we also got details about the Sailor Moon musicals! Last September’s new musical, Sailor Moon La reconquista, will be released on DVD on July 9th 2014. Most of the cast, with the exception of Sailor Mercury, will be returning for this summer’s new musical which is titled Petite Étrangère, which is French for “Little Stranger” with the feminine usage of both words leading us to believe we’re talking about Chibiusa. The musical will play in Tokyo from August 21st to the 31st and in Osaka from September 5th to the 7th. The new Sailor Mercury will be played by Momo Koyama.

Here’s a look at all of the new voice actors from Sailor Moon Crystal:

Kotono Mitsuishi, the voice of Sailor Moon from Sailor Moon Crystal

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