Happy Birthday Mamoru Chiba!

Happy Birthday Mamoru!

Happy Birthday Mamoru!

Ah, Tuxedo Mask… Sailor Moon‘s leading man and namesake for for this blog. Whether you’re a fan of his far more active manga counterpart or the quirky anime rendition who manages to always “save the day” without ever actually doing anything, I think we can all agree that the Masked Tuxedo plays an invaluable role across from our leading lady.

In honor of Mamoru Chiba’s birthday, I’d like to take the opportunity to highlight five interesting facts about the man behind the mask and his role in Sailor Moon. Happy Birthday, Mamoru!

1. Would it be Legal for Mamoru and Usagi to Date?

Considering the age difference between our leading couple, this is a question that gets asked a lot.1 While everything is (mostly) kosher with Usagi and Mamoru in the manga, him being in university throws a bit of a wrench into things.

But where does Japanese law weigh in on this? They don’t seem to keep their relationship a secret in the series, so it can’t be too big of a deal… right?

2. Why Was Mamoru Changed to a University Student in the Anime?

Speaking of the age difference between the two, why did the anime decide to change Mamoru from a cold and aloof high schooler to a cool-guy university student in the first place? It seems like they could have saved themselves a whole lot of issues if they just skipped that little change.

On the other hand, it may have had a very important impact on the anime’s narrative…

3. Did Mamoru Meet Usagi In the Hospital As a Child?

Putting aside for a second whether or not the Sailor Moon R movie should even be considered a part of the series canon, the pivotal hospital scene where Usagi gives Mamoru his trademark rose2 is one that I’m sure left a strong impression on most of us.

But there’s something amiss about this scene. Could it really have played out as we see, or did Mamoru only encounter a vision of Usagi — Princess Serenity — as he sat all alone in his hospital bed?

Mamoru has his reasons

Mamoru has his reasons

4. How Was Mamoru Affected by His Amnesia?

There’s no nice way to put this: Mamoru is… well, he’s a weird guy. While Motoki is busy running the family business and otherwise being a productive member of society, Mamoru spends his days making fun of 14 year old girls and riding panda-operated kiddy trains and theme parks.

Don’t get me wrong, I love the character, but the series leaves more than a few hints that the amnesia has much further-reaching effects than we’re led to believe.

5. How Smart Is Mamoru in the Anime and Manga?

We all know that Ami Mizuno is an unmatched child genius, even if her 300 IQ may be overblown, but we rarely discuss Mamoru’s intellect in both the anime and the manga. Not only is he rich, tall, and handsome, but the guy is also attending some of the best and hardest to attend schools that Tokyo has to offer.

The only problem that faces him is that he claims to want to be a doctor, though that’s absolutely not possible with his chosen undergrad. What gives, Mamoru?

Mamoru on his birthday. What could POSSIBLY go wrong?

Mamoru on his birthday. What could POSSIBLY go wrong?

What’s my favorite thing about Mamoru? Well, I’d have to say it’s the fact that he actually is Usagi’s boyfriend, actually. Far too often, shojo manga creates drama by having the “chase” and romantic tension between the two leads just drag on and on until the series finally ends, but Sailor Moon doesn’t bother with that trope and just gets them together right away, though this was probably more due to the oversight of assuming the series would only run for one season rather than by design.

So, hats off to ya, Mamoru! If only we were saved from that stupid Sailor Moon R story arc where you break up for literally no reason, your relationship would otherwise be an inspiration to us all!

If you have any questions you’d like me to look into about Mamoru, I’d love to hear about it in the comments below!

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  1. Or, rather, it should be asked a lot. Generally people just make broad statements about US law without considering that this is… you know, Japan.
  2. Which he then promptly gave to Fiore…

12 thoughts on “Happy Birthday Mamoru Chiba!

  1. Has it ever been explained where his money comes from? He doesn’t seem to be working part time, so… inheritance? Plus he must have had a foster family(ies) at some point, right? His backstory intrigues me to this day, although I suspect that Takeuchi probably didn’t really give it much consideration…

    • Oh, he could have been at an orphanage unil he turned… what age exactly? – I don’t know the japanese law. Damn.

      Now I’m starting to wonder how it was with Makoto. Damn!

    • My guess is that the implication was that all the money is what was left to him by his family. Life insurance policies, other assets and the like.
      But they never officially discuss it.

    • The live-action has Mamoru taken in by a family friend who then acts as his benefactor. Mamoru wasn’t officially adopted, but was going to marry his benefactor’s daughter when they came of age. There’s no information if this was a pre-arranged marriage before his parents’ death, a condition imposed by his benefactor, or Mamoru simply going along with Hina’s wishes (probably the latter). It doesn’t seem like Mamoru is particularly rich himself and most of his expenses are covered by his benefactor.

      With the lack of any real information in other versions, it’s likely someone is acting as his legal guardian but it’s not someone Mamoru is close to. The relationship would be purely professional. Mamoru clearly doesn’t live with anyone in the manga when he’s underage, and he is a legal adult in the anime. In these versions, he’s a trust fund baby.

      • Yeah, I know about live, but I consider it too much of a standalone story. Thanks anyway! 🙂

  2. I love Manga so much looks good relationship Mamoru and Usagi were together right:) sounds like story of “Romo and Julia “ the real relationship are life as Sailor Moon Romantic:) I like episode act 19 was good things usagi little alone he hug her and kisses Am I love it episode.❤️ Am I favorite Sailor Moon because I like it my life looks beautiful relationship with romantic emotions was good learning about the emotions love and passion. ❤️

    • He’s not saying that Sailor Moon R as a whole is stupid, but the part where Mamoru breaks up with Usagi, an arc that goes nowhere and has no real purpose to the overall plot. That part is pretty dumb.

      It’s not even that the breakup idea is bad, it’s that it was ultimately pointless and the reasoning behind it was silly.

  3. I never really thought of Mamoru as that weird. They are bound by fate and are soul mates after all. I doubt he set out to be with a 14 year old after all. He is shown to work part time while going to college and is working towards being a doctor. I’m not sure why his undergrad wouldn’t allow him to become a doctor? I know Japan has a different medical system than the US but I don’t know the intricacies. I also don’t have any problem with their age gap, I mean it’s only four years after all. That’s not much of an age gap to me. My issue with it is being raised in the US I see age of consent as 18 and anything below that is just creepy. To Americans, it gives pedo vibes for someone 18 and over to be interested in a 14 year old. So while the age gap isn’t an issue per say, the timing of their relationship is. 4 years in the future when Usagi is 18 there would be no issue. I think that they tried very hard to keep their relationship PG for this reason. Alas though Japan’s age of consent is 13 so although icky at times, it is perfectly legal. I find their relationship amazing and would love to find my own Mamoru. I would never support a 14 year old being with an 18 year old in real life, you just have to kinda put it aside and realize it’s legal in Japan. They even joke about it a bit in the anime. I kinda always mentally aged the characters up in my head, they all look to be more like 17ish to me anyways.

  4. First off: Mamoru *did* still indeed helped a lot in the much left to be desired 90’s anime adaptation.

    Second: his canonical age was 16 when Usagi was 14… (I say canonical because the manga is of course the true source and written by the author herself ) Once again, the 90’s anime makes a weird change again?

    Third: Uhh yeah that’s just weird. Yet again, more things that the 90’s anime changed about him haha. (There’s a pattern here isn’t there) He’s a high school student canonically.

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