How Different Was Tuxedo Mask in the Anime and Manga?

The Dueling Masks

The Dueling Masks

Second only to Sailor Moon, Tuxedo Mask was one of the original suited soldiers of justice fighting for peace and love on behalf of the citizens of Tokyo. In addition to the rather substantial differences between anime and manga Mamoru, Tuxedo Mask (when taken as an individual character) was also rather different between the two. Today, we’re going to look at a few of those differences.

Tuxedo Mask's Anime Transformation (ep. 19)

Tuxedo Mask’s Anime Transformation (ep. 19)


Probably one of the most obvious differences between anime and manga Tuxedo Mask is that in his animated form, he’s able to transform much like the rest of the Sailor Team.1 This appears on-screen only once throughout the Sailor Moon anime, though he transforms on several occasions throughout the Sailor Moon Sound Drama Collection2 published under the Animate Cassette Collection label. This is based on the anime and uses the same voices actors and actresses, so I believe it can be considered something of a joint/alternate universe, if not entirely canon. His transformation phrase in the audio drama is:

Tuxedo Power, Make Up! (click above for the audio)

Tuxedo Mask's Manga Costume (v.2, p.49)

Tuxedo Mask’s Manga Costume (v.2, p.49)

I understand that they wanted to align this with the transformation phrase shouted out by the Sailor Team, but it might have been a wise idea to use another term rather than make up, but that’s neither here nor there.

So what about the manga? Well, what’s interesting about Tuxedo Mask in the manga is that he doesn’t transform at all. In fact, the tuxedo he wears isn’t so much of a costume, but actual clothes that he puts on.3

Though it appears that he may  actually gain the ability to transform later in the series (around the Black Moon Family arc or later) since we never really witness Mamoru himself actually walking around in a tuxedo later on, at least in the very beginning Mamoru was actually actively dressing up in a tuxedo and mask when he was running around and playing super hero.

That brings us to difference number two!

Tuxedo La Smoking Bomber

Tuxedo La Smoking Bomber


Interestingly enough, things actually get reversed here between the anime and manga when it comes to his special abilities. Though his use of his cane and roses both for offense and defense is consistent between both the anime and the manga, he has one more power in his arsenal in the manga known as the “Tuxedo La Smoking Bomber.”4

Perhaps more interesting, though, is that this isn’t where Mamoru / Tuxedo Mask’s powers end in the manga. It’s also claimed that he has the powers of psychometry,5 or the ability to make connections between a physical object and events or persons related to it.6 He also displays the ability to heal injuries with only his touch.7

The Signature Attack

The Signature Attack

So what gives? Why does he have powers in the series where he doesn’t transform, but is stuck to sticks, rose-throwing, and motorcycles8 in the anime where he has an actual transformation? Well, the answer to this comes from when Usagi uses the power of the Silver Crystal to resurrect the Moon Castle and the Silver Millenium and heals the Earth.9 King Endymion himself also explains some of this away when discussing why it is that he too was able to live 1,000 years like the people of the Moon Kingdom:10

“It was all due to the power of the Silver Crystal . . . I was also granted power from the crystal and have been given a lifespan like those of the Silver Millenium court.”

We can assume that this would also mean that when Usagi had used the power of the crystal to cure him, she also gave him additional powers that were normally not granted to humans.

So as you can see, there were quite a few differences in the character in both his human and super hero forms, with both of them being equally interesting in my humble opinion. Though with some characters like Rei, the anime took some pretty drastic liberties, I feel like Mamoru was a pretty unique character in both incarnations. Which is your favorite?

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  1.  See episode 19 of Sailor Moon Classic
  2.  See the Sailor Moon Sound Drama Collection (Wikipedia)
  3.  See vol. 2, p. 49 of the original manga
  4.  See vol. 5, p. 46 of the original manga; for more details, see Tuxedo La Smoking Bomber
  5.  See vol. 4, p. 176 of the original manga
  6.  See Psychometry (Wikipedia)
  7.  See vol.4, p. 121 of the original manga
  8.  See ep. 69 / ep. 23 of Sailor Moon R
  9.  See vol. 4, pp. 22-23 of the original manga
  10.  See vol. 5, p. 116 of the original manga

25 thoughts on “How Different Was Tuxedo Mask in the Anime and Manga?

  1. I was amused by his portrayal in the Sound Drama’s. They send him up completely in those. His ‘Usagi in danger’ sense for one thing.

    • I’ve only listened to a few, but I’ve read summaries of the rest and they really seem to be focused more on comedy than even the anime. But I think it does open up an interesting side of the characters you usually don’t get to see in the anime, since they need to focus more on battles in the latter half of every anime episode.

      I hear that the anime comic adaptations done by Kodansha (where they take anime screenshots and add text bubbles) had a slightly different storyline of their own, due to having to compress 2-3 episodes into one book. I haven’t taken the time to read through them yet, but I’d be interested in seeing if — and how much — the characters actually differ!

  2. They’re a sadly overlooked and obscure part of the franchise, but it’s enjoyable hearing the cast basically having fun with their characters more then usual.

    Miss Dream also has another one ‘Anime Cassette Collection’. It’s like a lost episode in a sense, as it serves as a sequel to episode 21.

    • Oh, does she? I don’t believe I’ve heard that one, but I’d definitely be interested in any effort fans have for preserving these things. Unlike CDs, cassette tapes ultimately have a limited lifetime, so it really is just a matter of time until they’re all gone. Definitely need to check out that episode!

  3. Actually I think you are seriously underselling the power of anime Mamoru/Endymion. While it is true that he does not gain an energy attack like “Smoking Bomber”, he loses his role in powering the Silver Crystal, and even loses his direct link to the Golden Crystal I still think he may actually be significantly MORE powerful in the anime than the manga.

    His anime powers starting with the basic:

    Strength/Leaping – Just like all the Senshi he has enhanced strength and leaping abilities. He can jump across rooftops with ease, and in Venus’s debut episode he is able to leap the height of a tall crane, catch Sailor Moon, and land safely on the ground without issue.

    Sensing – He can sense when Sailor Moon needs him and where she is. He can also sense some kinds of energy such as when Zoisite (as Sailor Moon) fired his tiny energy crystals to eat away the ropes holding the window washers platform, Mamoru is able to see the shards and energy within burning away the ropes when no one else can.

    Pscychometry – He only uses it once but anime Mamoru has it too. When he first holds Chibiusa he does get a vision of Crystal Tokyo just like the manga. Not much is made of it here as it gets quickly overshadowed by the break-up arc “visions”.

    Healing – I think it’s just the one time he uses it but remember how he is able to channel his life force to “heal” Chibiusa to keep her alive after her pure heart crystal is stolen for an extended period of time.

    Teleportation – First hinted at back when he doesn’t know he is Tuxedo Mask. But when he senses Sailor Moon is in trouble he can seemingly teleport to her location. It also would explain how he is able to get to such strange high/small places for his entrances without being seen. The best and most undeniable use of this ability however is in 1×34. That’s the one where Moon and Mask find out each others identities. After the reveal during their confrontation with Kunizite and Zoisite, Tuxedo Mask is standing in front of Sailor Moon. Zoisite sneaks up behind Usagi and launches his icy spear at her back. Tuxedo Mask senses it and is suddenly behind her having been impaled from behind. There is no other way he could have gotten behind her without that quick without teleporting behind her.

    However all these pale in comparison his ultimate power. Anime Mamoru has insanely powerful psychic abilities!

    I mean consider Moonlight Knight. Mamoru’s own subconscious was able to project an entire other physically tangible entity capable of acting independently from the rest of his body! (It’s in theory possible that the entire Tuxedo Mask identity with its weapons are all an extension of his psychic powers. I mean as far as we know Tuxedo Mask did not exist during the Silver Millennium. It was just a costume he wore to the ball to speak with Princess Serenity. So the mask suddenly becoming a transformation device just seems pretty out of nowhere. Not to mention the ability to produce an unlimited supply of roses that can pierce darn near anything, block almost any projectile, ensnare, or multiply…not to mention that cane which somehow not only can extend to any length but also appears to be able to bend just how he needs it to.)

    Another example of Tux’s psychic prowess is when he went up against Prince Demande. The first time that Demande attacks when the group was together at the palace the Senshi were all in pain unable to move an inch. It is Mamoru who is the only one still able to easily move and thus able to hurl his cane at Demande causing him to cease his attack. The second time when he rescues Sailor Moon from his clutches…Demande again tries his paralyzing psychic power AND even hits him dead on with a psychic beam fired from his third eye. Tux blocks it with only his cape and is completely unfazed as if he was just hit with a flashlight beam.

    As King Endymion his powers only grew to where while unconscious he was able to maintain a psychic hologram form that could walk around the city 24/7 and still interact with (via touch) things such as the computers in the Crystal Tokyo palace. Plus he could even psychically project his mind back through time itself to:
    1) Converse with his younger self and Usagi while they were asleep.
    2) Project the images in their dreams that he wanted them to see.
    3) Either actually shatter the glass in picture frames, or just mentally project the permanent image of the broken glass frames in their minds while they were still awake!

    You know it also just occurred to me that it is actually kind of interesting that anime Mamoru had the power to manipulate dreams here in R long before his Golden Crystal was fleshed out in the manga with its tie to dream power? Could Naoko have indirectly drawn some small bit of inspiration from the horrible break-up arc?

  4. I think Mamoru/Tuxedo Kamen is overshadowed and sometimes his own role in the series is misguided by the immense power we all know Sailor Moon has. I think Mamoru may be even stronger than Sailor Moon. For instance, he has abilities Usagi doesn’t have unless she transforms. He carries a crystal that it is portrayed to be the counterpart of the Silver Crystal, I think thst part of him needs to be a little more explored, I think the fact that there is much mystery around his character gives way to think there is more than meets the eye with him. I agree with Xenox33, with exception of thinking that anime Mamoru is stronger than his manga counterpart. I think is the other way around, plus, we get to know more about him than in the anime since he is constantly portrayed as a guy who throws roses and gives speeches no one really understands. Anyways, those are my two cents. I just found this webpage and I am already loving it.

  5. The reason why he has powers in the manga is shown to be his Golden Crystal. It may not be present until Sailor Moon SuperS but he has the ability to draw from its powers Another explanation for his ability to use his powers without “transformation” in the manga is that he is on his own planet and can tap into his powers any time. Its never shown but I have a feeling that the same powers would be granted to any of the senshi on their own planet.

  6. Actually, as someone on Facebook pointed out, in Act 36 of the manga, when Chibi Moon joins the fight after Hotaru´s sacrifice, we see Mamoru transforming into Tuxedo Mask. There was that one frame, where he´s drawn in the same manner as Usagi when transforming (silhouette of a naked body & some special effect). No phrase was used, though, I still think it was meant to be a transformation. What a pity they didn´t play with it in Crystal.
    See for yourself here:

    • You know, you’re absolutely right! Thanks for pointing this out, I totally didn’t remember that.

      I wonder when in the series he would have transitioned over from “dressing up as Tuxedo Mask” to “transforming into Tuxedo Mask.” Around the time he got the Golden Crystal?

  7. I know this is a super old article, but I’ve been thinking about it since you relinked it on twitter a few days ago.

    The idea that manga Mamoru gets his powers from the ginzuishou strikes me as odd, because he has powers that Usagi does not. Usagi can’t heal wounds, she can’t put her hand on the ground to sense where people are, she doesn’t see visions of Crystal Tokyo when she holds Chibi Usa, and she doesn’t get premonitions nearly as often as Mamoru does. Plus, I was under the impression that King Endymion was talking only about the ginzuishou extending their life spans after Crystal Tokyo started, and that it applies to all the senshi, not just him.

    I think what is more likely is that Mamoru does not know he even has powers he could use until he regains his memories. Unlike Usagi, he never had a talking cat to just tell him what he could do. The first time he uses powers is during the Metallia fight at the end of the Dark Kingdom arc, first to give Sailor Moon some of his energy, and then to use his psychometry to find out where the Inners are. It seems odd that Mamoru would just confidently use these powers if they had been gifted to him a moment before by the ginzuishou bringing him back to life. I think it’s way more likely that they were always his to begin with, and he just had to remember.

    Plus, I feel like there would be no point to him possessing the Golden Crystal if that crystal granted no powers, not to mention all the emphasis placed on him having a sailor crystal for Galaxia to steal. He is a sailor senshi in all but the name; his powers just appear more subtle.

    I’m glad someone else pointed out that he’s shown transforming later in the manga. There is a second incident when he has a joint transformation with Usagi, too.

    • Interestingly enough, now that I’ve been re-reading through the manga recently, I notice that Mamoru transforms in Act 4 of the manga.

      When he is dancing with Usagi at the ball, Mamoru doesn’t have his top-hat, cape, or neck… brooch… thing. But when she falls off the balcony and he saves her, she does.
      And yet, at least in the Dark Kingdom arc, we’re basically left to believe that he doesn’t transform. So it’s likely a story inconsistency, sadly.

      • TBH, there is really only ONE scene that’s generally cited as proof that he doesn’t transform, and both the pictures and the wording seem to leave the whole thing ambiguous. If Moon can remove her tiara and hairpins to use them as weapons, we can’t assume that the senshi (and Tux) can’t take off parts of their battle uniforms without actually de-transforming.

        Also, look carefully at the moment where he finds Usagi about to pass out in the middle of the street (which was, interestingly enough, altered in Crystal). That would suggest that he went and changed into his tux right before waking her up, which doesn’t make sense since the chapter ends with him revealing his secret to her anyway.

      • Oh, good observation!

        I guess it’s just never stated outright either way, and that’s really because he’s supposed to be shrouded in ~mystery~ in the first arc. But he is shown to remove pieces of his outfit outside of battle (the scene when Usagi wakes up in his place, and there’s another one when he wakes up wearing what are obviously tuxedo trousers), which is something the senshi never really do. Could this be a case like the Moon Kaleidoscope, which was an ordinary object they bought in the store that gained magical properties just because the senshi needed it to? Maybe the tux started out as something he physically put on but over time he figured out how to summon it whenever he wanted.

        There’s just a lot of ambiguity over the whole thing. It’s too bad Naoko couldn’t explore this stuff more.

  8. Great article. Loved your other article on things that inspired Tuxedo Mask as we know him! Just wanted to add: “Tuxedo La Smoking Bomber” attack makes a bit more sense if you understand that “le smoking” is French for “tuxedo” or “black tie”. In French, it’s a false friend, so to speak, of the traditional, Victorian “smoking jacket.” Thus we get “le smoking” (in French, it’s masculine not the feminine “la”). Pretty fitting words for Tuxedo Mask’s attack. Love the articles! Please keep writing!

  9. Great article. Loved your other article on things that inspired Tuxedo Mask as we know him! Just wanted to add: “Tuxedo La Smoking Bomber” attack makes a bit more sense if you understand that “le smoking” is French for “tuxedo” or “black tie”. In French, it’s a false friend, so to speak, of the traditional, Victorian “smoking jacket.” Thus we get “le smoking” (in French, it’s masculine not the feminine “la”). I’ve been reading and watching “Sailor Moon” since I was six years old- my passion for languages got me to study French, and I remember the day I was researching vocab for a French essay, and bam! There it was. My Moonie mind was blown! Pretty fitting words for Tuxedo Mask’s attack. Love the articles! Please keep writing!

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