It’s amazing how stupid this question sounds on the surface, but when you stop and get down to it, it’s actually a lot harder than you’d think to count all of the canonical Sailor Soldiers. The biggest impacting factor on answering this question is
your imagination what you’re willing to consider canon in the Sailor Moon universe.
As much as I’d love to write a long intro and drag this out, we’ve got a lot of discussion ahead of us, so let’s get this started!
Before we get down into the weeds on who does or does not count, since we’re going to be using this term a lot in this article, I’m going to address the obvious question up front: what do you call Sailor Senshi in English?
So while there are many options for what you could call them – Sailor Scouts, Sailor Warriors, Sailor Soldiers, Sailor Guardians, Sailor Senshi – I typically prefer to stick to Sailor Soldiers, and that’s what I’ll be using here.1
All right! Now that terminology is out of the way, onto the question.
So, as I mentioned, how many Sailor Soldiers there are is dependent upon what you’re willing to consider canon. Just the manga? That’s easy. Include the anime? This is getting surprisingly more difficult. The live action drama? Okay, that changes things. The musicals? Well now you’re just being rude.
But you don’t just want to hear me ramble about how complex this is, do you? No, you want some numbers! And numbers you shall get.
Solar System Sailor Soldiers (Anime)
These would be, well, your canonical Sailor Soldiers. The first ones that probably come to mind when I ask you to name the main cast.
- Sailor Moon
- Sailor Mercury
- Sailor Mars
- Sailor Jupiter
- Sailor Venus
- Sailor V?
- Sailor ChibiMoon
- Sailor Uranus
- Sailor Neptune
- Sailor Pluto
- Sailor Saturn
Whether Sailor V counts as a separate Sailor Soldier is an interesting question, thought I ultimately wouldn’t. You could argue that she was simply Sailor Venus in disguise, or that much like the connection between Sailor Moon and Super Sailor Moon, Sailor Venus is simply a powered-up version of Sailor V.2
Exosolar System Sailor Soldiers (Anime)
So now we have those Sailor Soldiers that are from outside the Solar System. You’re probably still familiar with all these characters, so that’s good at least!
- Sailor Chibi Chibi
- Sailor Starfighter
- Sailor Starhealer
- Sailor Starmaker
- Sailor Starmaker’s Forehead?
- Sailor Galaxia
- Sailor Iron Mouse
- Sailor Aluminum Siren
- Sailor Lead Crow
- Sailor Tin Nyanko
This list is again pretty straight forward. Sailor Stars introduced a lot of extrasolar Sailor Soldiers into the story, both on the side of good and evil.
Manga-only Sailor Soldiers
This is where the number really starts to explode. To an even greater extent than the anime, Ms. Takeuchi went a bit Sailor-crazy and started making a whole bunch of heretofore unseen Sailor Soldiers.
- Sailor Cosmos (?)
- Sailor Kakyuu
- Sailor Ceres
- Sailor Pallas
- Sailor Juno
- Sailor Vesta
- Sailor Heavy Metal Papillon
- Sailor Lethe
- Sailor Mnemosyne
- Sailor Chi
- Sailor Phi
- Sailor Mau*
- Sailor Chuu*
- Sailor Mermaid*
- Sailor Coronis*
- Sailor Chaos*
At first I was a bit unsure how to count Sailor Cosmos, since you have the whole Sailor Galaxia ⇔ Sailor Chibi Chibi ⇔ Sailor Cosmos weirdness going on in between the anime and the manga. Since we discounted Sailor V as an alternative of Sailor Venus, it makes sense that something would go on here. But ultimately, I think we’ll count Sailor Cosmos precisely because we know so little about her.
The ones marked with asterisks either were referenced in the manga or appeared as shadows. Even if they didn’t technically appear in the series proper, though, I’ll still count them.
Live-Action / Musical Sailor Soldiers
These are the Sailor Soldiers who appeared only in live-action versions of Sailor Moon – specifically, the tv remake from the early 2000s and the musicals. These are probably the most likely to be considered non-canon Sailor Soldiers since their stories really depart quite heavily from the anime and manga, but it’s still worth considering.
- Sailor Luna
- Sailor Astarte
- Sailor Theta
- Sailor Titanium Kerokko (Sailor Meet Kerokko)
- Sailor Pewter Fox
- Sailor Buttress
So of course, we’ve got everyone’s favorite love-to-hate character Sailor Luna, followed by the five additional musical-only characters. Since Sailor Titanium/Meet Kerokko both have identical costumes, personalities, and share part of their name, I’m willing to consider them the same character.
Uncounted Sailor Soldiers
“BUT WAIT,” you say, possibly followed by several unpleasant phrases, “how come you didn’t count…”
And you’d be right. I did leave a few out. Specifically, I left out the Oppositio Senshi:
Though they’re referred to as senshi in the game, these characters aren’t connected to any planets or any celestial bodies, so I think we’re allowed to cut them out. Absent the name, in fact, they’re really no different than any other villain in the series, especially when you consider that they don’t transform.
Also, I left out…
- Tuxedo Mask
… because he’s not a Sailor Soldier. Yes, he has a Sailor Crystal. Yes, he’s the guardian of Earth. No, he’s not a Sailor Soldier. Of course, I’d be interested in hearing other opinions on this.
Who else is missing in action? The Parallel Inners!
- Parallel Sailor Moon
- Parallel Sailor Mercury
- Parallel Sailor Mars
- Parallel Sailor Jupiter
- Parallel Sailor Venus
Because, well, we never really see them do anything in the Parallel Sailor Moon manga. We also never hear their official names or see the colors of their Sailor uniforms.
And last but not least, I left out the Phages – the monsters of the day of Sailor Stars. While they had the Sailor something moniker, I think it’s safe to say that they weren’t Sailor Soldiers by any stretch of the imagination.3 Oh, and there were also twenty-one Phages, so no one in their right mind would want to add them to the list.
So, what’s the grand total?
If you ask me – which you kinda just did – I would say that within the general Sailor Moon canonical universe, there are 41 Sailor Soldiers. And that’s a lot more than I thought there were even when I started writing this article. If you’re more charitable than I and want to count all the ones I skipped, that brings us up to a a grand total of 73 Sailor Soldiers.
Now that we got all the numbers out of the way, where do you draw the line? Personally, as interesting as I find the musicals and the live-action show, I don’t really consider them a part of the same Sailor Moon canon. Even if some characters were different in the two series, I still think you can generally apply information from the anime to the manga (and vice-versa), except where it conflicts. But I don’t think that’s true for the musicals.
I’d be interested in seeing how these numbers change depending on what other fans think, though!
- Then why, I hear you ask, did I use Sailor Senshi in the title? Because it’s more likely to help people looking for this article on Google. ↩
- Though I’d argue she’s less powerful than Sailor V, but who asked me? ↩
- I see you about to hit that comment button! You’re about to point out my obvious inconsistency in applying the “no Sailor Crystal, not a Sailor Soldier” rule here and yet not counting Tuxedo Mask even though he has one. Well, I’m not discounting that Tuxedo Mask could be a Sailor Soldier, just that in his present form, he isn’t. ↩