If you’ve been involved with the Sailor Moon fandom as long as I have, I’m sure you’re quite familiar with all the absurd rumors that were running around in the early days, rampantly mixing original characters with the actual story, making it nearly impossible to tell what was real and what was fake.
Though Ms. Takeuchi never actually directly touches on the hows, whats, or whys involved in the connection between a human, their Sailor Crystal, and their respective celestial body, I think the information we can glean from the story tells us quite a bit.
Today we’ll be looking at just where that line in the sand is between what makes a Sailor Star Maker versus a Sailor Star Faker. For all you passionate Sailor Moon fans out there making your own custom characters, this one is going to be required reading!
As I mentioned, we don’t really have a whole lot of solid information straight from Ms. Takeuchi herself on the issue, but I think we can still lay down some general ground rules that seem to be true from what we see in the series. Fortunately for us, there are a lot of Sailor Solders in the series, so we have quite a large data set to work with!
In terms of hard-and-fast rules, I’d say there are two big ones that are important for our conversation today. For the sake of simplicity, we’ll take them one at a time.
Must be a singular, physical celestial object
I’d say that this is probably one of the most important rules when it comes to the whole Sailor Crystal/celestial body connection in the series, and is also the first one ignored when fans start coming up with their own original characters. The “celestial object” part is obvious, because each and every Sailor Soldier has a guardian planet/star/whatever that their Sailor Crystal is tied to, so we have no reason to believe that this isn’t always the case.
That rules out the possibility of a Sailor Flower, Sailor Photon, or Sailor Former-Soviet-Union. Of course, the Phages in Sailor Stars are an interesting exception to this, but since they technically aren’t even Sailors, I think we can safely overlook them.
The “singular” part comes into play because, at least as far as the series lets on, there’s no such thing as a Sailor Asteroid Belt, Sailor Oort Cloud, or Sailor Taurus. Yes, as tempting as it is to suggest that there are Constellation Senshi, constellations as we know them are completely made up by humans and exist only from an Earth-centric point of view.1
One Sailor Crystal per object
Basically what this rule means is that Sailor Crystals aren’t just continuously produced, and that like rabbits mating in Australia,2 eventually everyone will have a Sailor Crystal. There is exactly one Sailor Crystal for the Moon, and that’s all there ever will be. Though it’s unclear how a Sailor Crystal gets passed from one person to the next, such as from Usagi to ChibiUsa, we do know that there’s only one Sailor Crystal to go around.
This point is also made clear in the case of the Sailor Animamates, and how Sailor Lead Crow and Sailor Tin Nyanko killed Sailor Coronis and Sailor Mau for their respective Sailor Crystals.3
This rule also excludes common fan theories or original creations involving twin Sailors, having a Sailor Earth together with Tuxedo Mask (which doesn’t even work, considering that he possesses the Earth Sailor Crystal), and things like that.
Now that we’ve gotten all that out of the way, I think we’re finally in a spot to try to answer our original question: does every celestial object have its own Sailor Soldier?
Seeing as it’s nigh impossible to prove a negative,4 this is a bit of a tough point to argue, but I think that all of the information we have about the Sailor Moon universe points pretty clearly to the fact that Sailor Soldiers are more the exception than the rule.
The most obvious evidence is the fact that the Solar System isn’t overflowing with Sailor Soldiers, which it most certainly would be if every space rock over a certain size had one. Boasting a whopping 184 natural satellites,5 there’s no shortage of Senshi fodder in the Solar System. And that isn’t even counting all the space rocks in the asteroid belt, four of which (Ceres, Pallas, Juno, and Vesta) make up the Asteroid Senshi.
More specifically, though, I’d point to Sailors Lethe and Mnemosyne as a good example of this. The two of them live on the same planet, but get their Sailor Crystals from the binary stars they orbit between. Suspiciously missing from the picture is a Sailor Soldier for the planet they’re living on, though the implication is that they are the twin soldiers of the planet (which is probably related to the fact that living on a star isn’t practical).
Then of course there’s also Phobos and Deimos, the soldiers-but-not-Sailor-Soldiers from the planet Coronis that serve Sailor Mars.6 I guess there’s always the possibility that there’s some weird overlap with there being a Sailor Phobos and run-of-the-mill Phobos, but I’m comfortable ruling that out.
Probably the biggest question left here for me, and the one that only Ms. Takeuchi could answer, is what the determining factor is behind what has a Sailor Soldier and what doesn’t. Since we know that stars like Kinmokusei can have Sailor Soldiers, it seems like an odd oversight that there isn’t a Sailor Sun within the Sailor Moon universe.
But even if we can’t explain the how or why, I think we can at least reasonably say that there are limits, as we outlined above.
Do you have a different take on this? Or possibly an explanation as to why none of the other moons in the Solar System have a Sailor Soldier, when even asteroids do? If you have any theories on this, I’d love to hear them!
- See Constellation (Wikipedia) ↩
- See Rabbits in Australia (Wikipedia) ↩
- I just wrote “Sailor” six times in this sentence. Wow… ↩
- See Burden of Proof (Philosophy) (Wikipedia) ↩
- See List of Natural Satellites (Wikipedia) ↩
- There is some confusion over whether or not they were Sailor Soldiers, but the manga is pretty clear that they aren’t since they are described as “soldiers in training” (訓練兵), using an entirely different Japanese word for “soldier” (兵; hei vs. 戦士; senshi). They also have normal star seeds when killed by Sailor Lead Crow, which basically settles that argument. ↩