(Gekka 7) Visiting Tokyo’s All-Sailor Moon Doujinshi Expo

Gekka 7 Promotional Pamphlet

Gekka 7 Promotional Pamphlet

When I learned that there was a Sailor Moon-only doujinshi event being held in Tokyo, it was pretty much a given that I would definitely be there. No matter what I had to do to make it happen, I absolutely needed to be surrounded by the epitome of Japanese Sailor Moon fandom.

In addition to the obvious selfish reasons, this also was a great opportunity for me to introduce the Japanese fan community to readers in the west, who may not have as much exposure to what it’s like to be a fan of Sailor Moon in the land where it originated.

So today I’m going to take you along on my trip to 月華遊星 (Gekka Yuusei; lit. Alluring Moon & Planets),1 an annual by-fans-for-fans Sailor Moon event held in Tokyo. Stick around — there are a lot of pics here you won’t want to miss!

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Why Are Cats Such an Important Part of Sailor Moon?

Seriously Luna, explain yourself!

Seriously Luna, explain yourself!

When talking about an anime/manga series with a well-developed and passionate fan base, you often have to keep in mind that a lot of the “mysteries” out there are probably already common knowledge to fans of the series.

The rabbit imagery in Sailor Moon is a great example of this. If you asked a random person on the street about the connection between rabbits and the moon, you’d probably be met with a blank stare. A seasoned Sailor Moon fan, however, could talk your ear off about the lunar-dwelling mochi-makin’ rabbit.1

No, if I’m going to be true to my word of working to “unravel Sailor Moon mysteries,” we’re going to need to go deeper, and far more obscure.

That’s why we’ll be talking today about the cats that made Sailor Moon possible… and just why the heck Ms. Takeuchi chose cats in the first place! I hope you’re emotionally prepared for this, because things are about to get down right pawsome!2

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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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What Does Naoko Takeuchi Credit for Sailor Moon’s Success?

Got a few questions here for Naoko...

Got a few questions here for Naoko…

As the writer of a Sailor Moon blog, invariably the day would come where I’d sit down and put pen to paper fingers to keyboard and weigh in on the “secret to Sailor Moon‘s popularity.” I thought that today would be that day.

But then I started to have second thoughts. Why should I write this?

Why don’t we just go straight to the source, and see what Ms. Takeuchi has to say for herself? With all the dozens (hundreds?) of interviews that she’s done over the years, she must have already answered this question, right?

And, as a matter of fact, she did!

Join me, dear readers, as we follow Ms. Takeuchi’s logic behind just what made Sailor Moon the raging success that we know it to be today!

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Is Parallel Sailor Moon a Part of the Series Canon?

More like Inverted Sailor Moon

More like Inverted Sailor Moon

Parallel Sailor Moon has always held a special place in my heart due to its unique place in the history of the series: technically speaking, it’s the last Sailor Moon manga written by Ms. Takeuchi… well, ever.

Though she did draw a few short comics about the series in her Naoko Punch comic series, and was involved in designing the live-action series’ very own Sailor Luna, this was the last story that Ms. Takeuchi would write in the world of Sailor Moon.

But just how seriously should we take Parallel Sailor Moon, and where does it tie in to the greater lore of the series?

If you’ve ever been kept up at night wondering about these issues and more, stick around! Once we’re done, you might finally have that restful sleep you’ve been hoping for!

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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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Is Sailor Stars Really a Story About Flowers?

Eternal Sailor Moon also likes flowers

Eternal Sailor Moon also likes flowers

Right from the moment that you first read the series’ title, it should be apparent to even the most casual observer that Pretty Soldier Sailor Moon likely has something to do with space.

As you read/watch more of the series, it continues to drive this home as new space-themed characters are added and the story leaves the boundaries of Earth to travel to the Moon, asteroids, and beyond.

With all that in mind, you’d think that the climax of the series — named Sailor Stars no less! — would practically be a love letter to all things space-related. And you’d be right.

… kind of.

Today we’re going to talk about the less-discussed flower-themed imagery hidden within Sailor Moon Sailor Stars. You may want to put on some gardening gloves, because we’re about to get dirty!

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