Naoko Takeuchi at San Diego Comic-Con 1998
I am what you could reasonably call a longtime Sailor Moon fan — a “lifer” if you will. I was there when the series was taken off the air, came back on the air, and was taken off again. Yours truly remembers when “new” episodes of Sailor Moon meant the last part of the Sailor Moon R anime that DiC never bothered to get around to dubbing.
And then there were the misguided Sailor Moon / Pop-Tarts campaigns.
Today we’re going to talk about something a little different: we’re going nearly 20 years into the past to talk about the time that Ms. Takeuchi addressed American Sailor Moon fans and answered some of our burning questions. It’s gonna get interesting, so stick around!
Tell me your secrets!
Whether it’s due to really restrictive NDAs signed by everyone involved, a stronger sense of respect for one’s prior workplace, or a power-hungry industry that will shut out anyone who opens their mouths from finding new work, it’s pretty uncommon to find tell-all accounts of what it was like working behind the scenes of Sailor Moon, or even any anime really.
While I wish I could say that I’m here to sate your (and my?) desire for drama, I’m actually here to share with you a heartwarming account by Kotono Mitsuishi, voice of Sailor Moon and Usagi Tsukino.
Sit back, relax, and enjoy!
In search of the missing link
Now that it’s been over a quarter of a century since Sailor Moon first hit bookshelves, and hit the airwaves shortly after that, I doubt it’s really much of a surprise to anyone to hear that another series by Ms. Takeuchi, Codename: Sailor V, served as a precursor to our favorite series.
And if you didn’t know… well, surprise! Now you do. Since I have a strict “one tidbit per post” rule, I guess that means that we call get to just go home then.
… or, I could finish what I started.
Today we’ll be talking about the creative process that was involved in turning a one-shot manga starring the no-nonsense beauty Sailor V and her sidekick kitty-pal Artemis into the multimedia powerhouse starring a full-fledged Sailor Team.
I hope you join along for the ride!
Ikuhara (left) trying the “zero-fashion-sense Mamoru” look
It’s been a long road here, but we’ve finally made it to the end of our three part special, where we review Director Ikuhara’s notes explaining his thoughts on the story of the Sailor Moon R movie. You can find Part 1 and Part 2 here, respectively.
If you’re new to this series, a little background: Kunihiko Ikuhara was the director and major creative force behind the Sailor Moon R movie. Included with the LaserDisc release of the movie was a six page summary of his “interpretation” – basically, his thoughts and inspirations – of the story, separated by chapter.
Today, I’ll be finishing up with comments 17 through 22! Why don’t you join along?
Fiore and his flower minions
After finishing the first half of my review of Ikuhara’s director’s notes for the Sailor Moon R movie, I have to admit that I feel like I have a bit of a better understanding of what story he intended to tell.
And you know, I think I like the movie even more. Knowing that there’s actual meaning behind scenes I just glossed over adds a new depth to the movie for me, and it’s definitely moved up on my “to watch” list.
That said, join me as I continue on with Director Ikuhara’s notes for chapters 11 through 16!
Flower Garden in the Sailor Moon R Movie
Love him or hate him, Director Kunihiko Ikuhara had a huge impact on the direction that the Sailor Moon anime took and, by extension, could arguably be said to be one of the more influential forces behind the series – especially for those fans who have only seen the anime.
One of his more well-known achievements in terms of Sailor Moon, though, is his work on the Sailor Moon R movie. I’ve written about his thoughts on the movie before, with regard to Usagi and the conflicting representations of motherhood, but today we’re going to take a deeper dive into his thoughts on the imagery of the movie. Come along!
Pretty Soldier Sailor Moon: Another Story (1995; Super Famicom)
Released on September 22, 1995, – halfway through the anime’s SuperS season, despite being firmly entrenched in Sailor Moon S lore – Pretty Soldier Sailor Moon: Another Story was a groundbreaking RPG for its time. Not only was it an RPG built from the ground up for a young, female audience, but it also had a much larger cast of characters than most other games in the genre dared to at the time and even included audio from the actual voice talent.
Today I’ll be translating an interview with members of the development staff so we can take a look at some of the challenges they faced in making the game. Let’s get going!