Happy Birthday Minako Aino!

Sailor Venus cake by YouTuber DreamChaser

Sailor Venus cake by YouTuber DreamChaser (watch video)

Ah, Minako Aino — part-time lover, part-time volleyball playing, Queen-stabbing Sailor Senshi. Is there nothing this girl can’t do?

Thanks to her dual story arcs in Codename: Sailor V and in Sailor Moon, Minako is one of the few characters sporting character growth nearly on the same level, or possibly even greater, than Usagi herself!

The girl who was once a crime-fighting rookie eventually joins the Sailor Senshi as a veteran warrior and leader of the Sailor Team. The fact that these two arcs blend together so easily is yet another credit to Ms. Takeuchi’s amazing storytelling abilities.

Today in honor of Minako Aino’s birthday (her 40th, if case you’re counting!), we’ll be talking about five interesting facts about her character and the role she plays in Sailor Moon. Be sure to stick her around and wish her a good one!

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Does ChibiUsa Come From an Alternate Timeline in Sailor Moon?

There can only be one!

There can only be one!

ChibiUsa has always interested me not only for her character — which is certainly enough to win you over in its own right! — but also for what she represents in the series. Her very existence proves that Usagi and Mamoru’s magical romance works out, the Sailor Soldiers will ultimately win, and if your parents leave you crying in the rain, you’re justified in turning evil.

Except for one small, tiny, little catch:

Her existence may not actually prove any of those things.

How’s that? Well, dear reader, I’m glad you asked! Today we’re going to be exploring the possibility that the ChibiUsa we know and love may not be one, but several different ChibiUsas coming from several different timelines.

I hope you have a pen and paper handy, because things are gonna get a complicated!

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What Power Is Sailor Mars Invoking with Burning Mandala?

The mandala, it burns!!

The mandala, it burns!!

It certainly does seem like we keep coming back to Sailor Mars, time and again, in our effort to answer yet more Sailor Moon mysteries.

And it’s not like we don’t have a good reason for it, either.

While I’m certain that most fans the world over are perfectly capable of figuring out what a “Supreme Thunder” is, or parsing out the meaning behind a “Love and Beauty Shock,” Sailor Mars is something of a different story for the western world. Steeped in Shinto tradition, and yet having nearly no Shinto-inspired powers, the attacks wielded by the Sailor Soldier of fire have a surprisingly deep and convoluted background.

Join me as we dissect the Burning Mandala, and figure out once and for all what those symbols she’s summoning up actually mean. You may want to grab a snack, because this is gonna be quite a ride!

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Are the Outer Sailor Senshi More Powerful than the Inners?

Now girls, no need to fight...

Now girls, no need to fight…

As odd as it may sound, some of my favorite questions to answer on this blog are the ones that seem so obvious that they aren’t even worth asking. Take, for example, the fact that the Outer Senshi are much more powerful than their Inner counterparts. Done deal, right?

Well, kinda.

Taken in context of Sailor Moon, it’s a fair argument to make. Though, when you try to scratch below the surface, it quickly becomes apparent that there are never any specific references to back this up.

What do we mean by “more powerful”? Is this true throughout the entire series, or just when the Outers first appear? And how do the Sailor Soldiers stack up against each other, anyway?

Today we’re going to take a closer look at this issue and see if we can finally answer these questions once and for all!

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What Does Rei’s Akuryo Taisan Chant Mean?

The Magnificent Mars Mantra!

The Magnificent Mars Mantra!

While Sailor Moon definitely had its fair share of character stereotypes, I think that was actually one of the points where the series truly shined. Rather than just sticking with common tropes, it built upon them to make each of the characters into people that stood out on their own merits and that the readers/viewers could really relate to.

One such character, for me at least, is Rei — and especially the Rei that we see depicted in the anime. Though a haughty, strong-headed, and competitive 14 year old girl in her day-to-day life, she somehow manages to make this work with her spiritual side without ever feeling like either depiction of the character is shoehorned in.

Today, I’d like to take a moment to explore a little more of Rei’s spiritual side, and specifically about what some of her chants actually mean. If you happen to be an evil demon, you may want to skip this article. For the rest of you, read on!

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Are Phobos and Deimos Sailor Soldiers in Training?

Sailor Mars with Phobos and Deimos in the background

Sailor Mars with Phobos and Deimos in the background

From the moment that Phobos and Deimos first appeared in the series, I think that many fans got the sense that there was probably something deeper lurking within Rei’s bird companions. They had Mars-themed names, after all, and time and again we would find ourselves introduced to talking cats throughout Sailor Moon‘s run. So why not talking birds?

And yet, it took four long years before we ever learned any more about them… in the manga, at least.

Who are Phobos and Deimos really? What is their role in the series? And is it true that they’re also Sailor Soldiers in training?

Stick around, because today we’ll be taking a look at these questions and more as we discuss Sailor Mars’ feathered companions!

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Why Did the Amazoness Quartet Serve as Chibi Moon’s Guardians?

Amazoness Quartet

Amazoness Quartet

The Sailor Moon series is no stranger to making some seemingly inexplicable choices when it comes to groups and planetary associations. Jupiter, for example, is most definitely one of the outer planets… and yet we find her as a member of the Inner Senshi.

Odd though that choice may be, it pales in comparison with the bizarre choice of having Sailor ChibiMoon’s team be made up of… the Amazoness Sailor Quartet? No matter what way you try to cut it, there really just aren’t isn’t any logical connection between the asteroid belt and the Moon.

… right?

As we’ve learned many times before, sometimes the most difficult part of solving a mystery isn’t necessarily in finding the answer, but in finding the right way to frame the question.

Today we’re going to take a closer look at the Sailor Quartet, and why Ms. Takeuchi may have chosen these manga-only Senshi to serve as Sailor ChibiMoon’s guardians. You may want to keep a pen and paper handy, because things are about to get complicated!

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