Sailor Moon is a series with many adaptations and versions. In 2016 after much anticipation, a remake of the original anime called Sailor Moon Crystal was released. There was…mixed reception on this series. I’m going to review each episode to see how they all hold up. But to kick things off, I want to share my overall thoughts of the newer series. This is both an announcement for my per-episode review, as well! I also wanted to mention some of the main flaws, as well as improvements of the series as it aired.
The original Sailor Moon anime aired from 1992-1997 and was 200 episodes and is an adaption of Naoko Takeuchi’s manga of the same title. The newer Sailor Moon Crystal series is shorter in comparison with 13 episodes per season. However, the newest series is adapting the Chibiusa focused Dream Arc into a two part movie.
I know a lot of people have already discussed the animation errors and flaws so I won’t talk about them too much here. However, I personally feel that the biggest flaw of this series is on its lack of consistency. The animation style changes on the third series, albeit in a style that is a sort of in between the manga and original anime. The transformations also are in 3-D in the first few seasons, with a switch to 2-D in the third. Again, this is an improvement but is still something to note. I was not sure which art style to put up to represent the series. Because the series consisted of two different art styles, I wanted to put the two up so people could compare.
Something else I’ve noticed that entire YouTube rants and a few blog posts have been dedicated to pointing out the flaws in this newer series. Even in Japan, the ratings of Sailor Moon Crystal plummeted on Nico Nico Douga after during the first season. Nico Nico is a YouTube-like site which streamed the series via Toei Animation. It is very likely Toei Animation listened to feedback,which lead to the aforementioned changes. I think it that is great that Toei listened to fans and made the series better.
I’ve also noticed reception has gotten better since the series has had a new art direction and director. Consistency between seasons aside, I personally am happy with the changes from the second to third season. It was exciting to see Usagi’s Tsukino’s story animated once more and even more so excited to see a revival of the characters I’ve grown to love in the form of merchandise. And plus the series did do one huge thing that fans, including myself, really wanted to see: Sailor Saturn, finally got a very much anticipated transformation sequence of her own! Again, I’ll go into more detail in the review posts themselves.
Many people I know, myself included, were moved by the first episode and that is where I’ll start! But will the first few seasons be just as moving? I’ll give the series another watch and see!
Sailor Moon has influenced me as a creator. Although when it aired in America, I was just born, I got into it at around nine years old when a friend brought the VHS tapes over. It was one of the first anime series I’ve watched and loved seeing strong female characters share a sense of friendship and camaraderie and take down their foes in their cute senshi uniforms. Although I’m late to the review party, I still want to share my thoughts because Sailor Moon really means a lot to me.